1 Monday, 17 September 2007
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 2.17 p.m.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Good afternoon to everyone in and around the
6 courtroom assisting us.
7 Mr. Registrar, would you please call the case.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Good afternoon, Your Honours. Good afternoon to
9 everyone in the courtroom. This is case number IT-04-84-T, the Prosecutor
10 versus Ramush Haradinaj et al.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Registrar.
12 Both parties I think have indicated that they would like to
13 address the Chamber. Prosecution first -- or is there any logical order
14 in the matters you would like to raise? Or is there nothing?
15 MR. RE: I don't believe I -- good afternoon. I don't actually
16 believe I indicated anything I wanted to address. I think Mr. Emmerson
17 was going to address the witness for tomorrow --
18 JUDGE ORIE: Which might be --
19 MR. RE: But we would seek to call Mr. Dourel tomorrow and I think
20 he would wish to address the Trial Chamber on why he doesn't wish Mr.
21 Dourel to give evidence before the Chamber.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Emmerson, is that the issue you would like to
24 MR. EMMERSON: There were two issues. There's one relating to the
25 next witness and the exhibits that the Prosecution has given notice of its
1 intention to tender through the witness and then there is the issue of the
2 witness to come, Mr. Dourel. Can I deal with Mr. Dourel first.
3 Your Honour will have seen the Prosecution's proposed amended
4 witness list which gives rise to a number of issues which will call upon a
5 response from the Defence. One of them and the only one that is pressing
6 in the sense that it presses against the Prosecution's intention to put
7 Mr. Dourel in the witness box tomorrow is that as the Trial Chamber will,
8 I think, appreciate, Mr. Dourel's report is, in effect, a comment on
9 certain of the conclusions reached in Professor Lecomte's report. And
10 when the Prosecution indicated its intention to as Mr. Dourel to the
11 Prosecution's witness list, certainly so far as we were concerned our
12 consent at that stage was certainly premised on the assumption that the
13 Prosecution intended to call Professor Lecomte to give evidence before the
14 Trial Chamber, she having been on the Prosecution's witness list since the
16 And Your Honour will recall that during the course of the evidence
17 of Professor Aleksandric, the Prosecution through Mr. Re indicated that it
18 would indeed tender Professor Lecomte's report and Professor Aleksandric
19 was dispatched with a request to provide a critique of it. Mr. Dourel's
20 is also a critical aspect of Professor Lecomte's report. So when the
21 Prosecution's proposed amended witness list was filed on Friday it came as
22 some surprise to me to discover that the Prosecution intended to abandon
23 Professor Lecomte and not to call her to give evidence before the Trial
24 Chamber, particularly since there is to be evidence from two witnesses
25 which is in effect a comment on the evidence that was to be elicited from
1 Professor Lecomte.
2 So there are two difficulties as matters currently stand.
3 Mr. Dourel is on a proposed list, it's obviously rather short notice to be
4 calling forensic evidence of that nature, particularly when we haven't
5 heard from the author of the report upon which he is, in effect, being
6 invited to comment so that she hasn't set out her conclusions and the
7 relevance of insect and larvae to the conclusions that she drew. And so
8 as a matter of logic, there are really two issues that arise. One is the
9 circumstances in which it would be right for the Trial Chamber to have
10 Professor Lecomte's evidence before it and the second is the order in
11 which the evidence is to be called.
12 As I say, we have no objection to the Prosecution adding
13 Mr. Dourel, providing Professor Lecomte is called before the Trial Chamber
14 to explain her conclusions and her reasoning as well.
15 If the Prosecution is adamant that it will not call Professor
16 Lecomte, despite the way in which the matter has proceeded thus far, then
17 I suppose the reluctant position that we would have to adopt would be to
18 invite the Trial Chamber to call Professor Lecomte, but even then it would
19 be certainly more logical for Professor Lecomte to give evidence before
20 those who comment upon her conclusions to give evidence.
21 So the main concern that I have is that in effect the Prosecution
22 has added Mr. Dourel and taken away Professor Lecomte on whose conclusions
23 he is being invited to comment. So that is our immediate concern.
24 There are, as I say, a number of other issues about the way in
25 which the Prosecution re-ordered its witness list which require to be
1 addressed, but they don't need to take up Trial Chamber time at the moment
2 and could be addressed in the course of a short written submission to the
3 Trial Chamber.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re --
5 MR. GUY-SMITH: If I might, Your Honour.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, Mr. Guy-Smith.
7 MR. GUY-SMITH: I join in Mr. Emmerson's remark but would only
8 like to add that in the filing with regard to the submission of this
9 particular witness's report, that's Mr. Dourel's report on August 16th,
10 the Prosecution states the Prosecution requested this report on the 25th
11 July 2007. It clarifies and provides further details about forensics
12 issues relating to the September 1998 body recovery operation at the Lake
13 Radonjic canal site which were the subject of the two expert reports of
14 forensic expert Professor Dominique Lecomte. So it is very clear that
15 this was a supplemental report to follow in light of that information that
16 had been obtained by the Prosecution with regard to the forensic
17 pathological issues that exist in this case.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re.
19 MR. RE: Professor Lecomte has provided two reports. The first
20 one was on the 27th of October last year and the second one was on the
21 15th of June this year. The original purpose of a report from Professor
22 Lecomte was to examine or have an outside expert examine the methodology
23 of the Serbian forensic recovery process in 1998 and to give an
24 independent and learned critique and commentary on how it was carried
25 out. As you're aware, her conclusions are generally that it was carried
1 out as well as it could have been under the circumstances. The
2 Prosecution is satisfied, having heard the evidence of so far Professor
3 Aleksandric and Dunjic that her conclusions are consistent with the
4 evidence that the Trial Chamber has heard and the Trial Chamber could, in
5 our respectful submission, come to that conclusion themselves without
6 Professor Lecomte's -- without burdening the Trial Chamber with additional
7 witnesses and Professor Lecomte.
8 Professor Lecomte provided a second report this year, and it
9 appears to the Prosecution that Professor Lecomte went outside the area of
10 her expertise in providing an opinion which she was probably not as well
11 equipped to make in relation to the presence or otherwise of larva in
12 bodies or in a forensic site as someone who has that particular area of
13 expertise as a specialty. When Professor Aleksandric testified in July,
14 the Trial Chamber, in fact, the Presiding Judge, Judge Orie, asked
15 questions of Professor Aleksandric directed towards to the presence or
16 otherwise of larva or maggots in the bodies of what he was observed when
17 he was carrying out -- when -- at the time. To cover a gap between what
18 we saw as a deficiency in Professor Lecomte's second report and the
19 questions the Trial Chamber was asking, on the 25th of July or in that
20 week we asked -- we sought an expert, a suitably qualified entomologist
21 and it's a highly specialised field, forensic entomology, and we found all
22 sort -- the opinion of Mr. Dourel, Laurent Dourel, Lieutenant Laurent
23 Dourel of the national gendarmerie of France, and you can see from the
24 curriculum vitae which is filed with his report that he has 700 expertise
25 since 1992, of which about 70 to 80 have been have been in relation to
1 forensic entomology solely. He is a world expert in the area of forensic
2 entomology, and particularly in Europe. If anyone is qualified to give
3 the opinion the Trial Chamber it appeared to us was seeking to find more
4 information on, that is presence or otherwise of larva or maggots when
5 bodies are recovered in situ, it is Mr. Dourel or someone of his
7 I just correct myself. A moment ago I said he has 700 expertise,
8 it's actually the institute for which he works in Paris, not him -- not
9 Mr. Dourel himself. And on that basis we obtained the report and we put
10 him on the witness list.
11 Why are we calling him tomorrow? Well, the Trial Chamber is aware
12 of that, as are the Defence, in that we had a difficulty obtaining other
13 witnesses next week because the witnesses we had planned to call became
14 unavailable. And Mr. Dourel is in Paris and he was the easiest and most
15 convenient witness to call in the time available. We filed the motion on
16 the 17th of August this year, and we -- and the Defence has had his report
17 since the first week of August, the week after we obtained the report, had
18 it translated into English. So the Defence in our submission should be
19 well prepared to cross-examine Mr. Dourel on this issue because they in
20 fact should have been prepared to cross-examine Professor Aleksandric,
21 Professor Dunjic when they testified in July so in our submission there
22 can be no prejudice to the late notice. Of course, if there is any issue
23 we would of course listen to any submissions that Defence counsel would
24 make about the need they would have to -- for additional time to prepare
25 their cross-examination. But at the moment it doesn't appear to us in our
1 submission that they would need it.
2 So those are the reasons why we seek to add him to the list. It
3 provides -- the evidence he provides is not merely a commentary on
4 Professor Lecomte's report and in fact it is not intended as a comment on
5 Professor Lecomte's report, it's actually intended to fill a gap in
6 relation to the presence or otherwise of maggots and what it means in
7 relation to how long the bodies might have been there and it's something
8 which in our submission Professor Lecomte is not qualified to comment on
9 in the same way that Mr. Dourel is. So in our submission he is the most
10 appropriate witness to cover that particular area of expertise.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Emmerson.
12 MR. EMMERSON: Your Honours, on the 23rd of April of this year,
13 Mr. Dutertre wrote to Professor Lecomte and her colleague, drawing
14 attention to questions that had been raised about the integrity of the
15 crime scene and the possibility that bodies may have been moved post
16 mortem, and basing themselves no doubt on their knowledge of her sphere of
17 expertise, they asked her to address four specific questions with that
18 potential outcome in mind. First of all, an estimation of the date of
19 death for each body based on the available video, photographic, and post
20 mortem findings; secondly, the period for which, that is to say the period
21 of time for which each body had been in situ at the site where it was
22 recovered; thirdly, any other forensic medical conclusions capable of
23 being drawn; and fourthly, "to submit any other comments that may be
24 useful for determination of the authenticity of the three crime scenes
25 where the relevant bodies were discovered."
1 Professor Lecomte then goes through each set of remains one by
2 one, looking at the state of the remains, not simply at the question of
3 dipteral larva, although that is one of the factors that in some instances
4 she chooses to refer to, but also the presence or absence of complete
5 skeletons. What inference is there to be drawn from the location of the
6 skeleton and the missing bones where they are missing, and a variety of
7 other indicia which lead her to express certain conclusions. If I can
8 summarize it very briefly, her conclusions in respect of the remains
9 recovered adjacent to the canal are consistent with the proposition that
10 the remains had been moved sometime shortly before they are recorded as
11 having been found.
12 Just to take a random illustration, she will say, for example, in
13 respect of a particular set of remains that the date of death can be
14 placed at more than three months, not taking account of all of the
15 environmental features, including larvae but not confined to it, it is her
16 opinion that the body has been in situ for a very short period of time.
17 She also draws certain conclusions about the bodies that have been removed
18 from the indictment that were recorded as having been discovered in and
19 around the economic farm.
20 THE INTERPRETER: Mr. Emmerson, could you please come closer to
21 the microphone, you are very hard away from it and the interpreters are
22 having a hard time.
23 MR. EMMERSON: I do apologise.
24 The remains that were recovered in and around the economic farm
25 where she has drawn conclusions about dates of death, which are consistent
1 of the dates of reported disappearance and would place those dates of
2 death at a time after the area had been secured by Serbian forces.
3 Now, plainly she is an important witness in evaluating the other
4 evidence that the Trial Chamber has heard, and for Mr. Re in effect to
5 suggest that her conclusions are premised solely upon the presence or
6 absence of dipterous larvae and the development of insects in relation to
7 the bodies is obviously inconsistent with the way in which she expresses
8 herself in her report.
9 As far as cross-examination is concerned, I have to say candidly
10 that because of the way in which her report was presented and the way in
11 which the Prosecution then served the report of Mr. Dourel, it had been
12 our confident expectation that Professor Lecomte would explain her reasons
13 to the Trial Chamber and that therefore Mr. Dourel's gloss or
14 qualifications of what can be inferred from dipterous larvae would be
15 before the Trial Chamber as part of the overall picture of the evidence.
16 So that is the position as we submit it.
17 It would in our submission be quite wrong for the Prosecution now
18 to be permitted to substitute, effectively, a witness who supports their
19 case for one who arguably does not -- or indeed to suggest to the Trial
20 Chamber that the conclusions that Professor Lecomte expressed in direct
21 answer to questions that the Prosecution expressly put to her and must,
22 therefore, have concluded were within her expertise should now be
23 discarded on the basis that somehow overall her conclusions lie outwith
24 her expertise. So, Your Honour, those are our submissions.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re.
1 MR. RE: Can I just briefly respond. Only one thing in relation
2 to whether or not we would call Professor Lecomte. In a sense, we're in
3 the Trial Chamber's hands. I mean, the Trial Chamber is clearly making
4 the assessment at the end of the case. If it's of assistance to the Trial
5 Chamber, if you're of that view, we will call Professor Lecomte, if you
6 feel that it's necessary to get a complete picture as to how the forensic
7 process was carried out by the Serbs at the -- Serbian authorities at the
9 However, we would not rely upon that portion of her second report
10 in which she bases an opinion in relation to the presence or otherwise of
11 larvae because now despite what Mr. Emmerson's just said, she has in our
12 submission gone outside her area of expertise and she wouldn't be the
13 first expert before this Tribunal or any other to have done so, in an
14 attempt to be helpful. So if it's of assistance we would make application
15 to put her back on the list. We make it clear, we don't rely upon that.
16 Mr. Dourel we would say is the preferred expert in that particular area.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. You've said several times Professor Lecomte is
18 not the first expert in this field and she went beyond her expertise.
19 That's -- the first sentence suggests that there are better ones and the
20 second sentence suggests that she should have stayed out it at all.
21 MR. RE: What I meant was clearly in the experience of everyone in
22 this courtroom experts sometimes go outside their area of expertise. I
23 just mean that in general. What I meant in the second -- in relation to
24 the second area, having read her opinion we are of the view in relation to
25 the larvae and the presence of maggots, et cetera she is wrong and
1 Mr. Dourel the expert in that particular field of forensic entomology is
2 correct and we do not wish to put her second report or that portion of it
3 in which she expresses an opinion which we say, A, goes outside her
4 expertise and, B, is wrong.
5 [Trial Chamber confers]
6 JUDGE ORIE: The Chamber will consider the matter during the first
7 break. We don't find it useful to do it at this very moment, but we'll
8 give it full priority today.
9 MR. EMMERSON: Could I just invite the Trial Chamber whilst doing
10 that, for example, to have a look at her conclusions and the reasons for
11 them, in respect just to take as an example of body R-3 where she
12 concludes the body has been dead for three months and one of the bases for
13 her conclusion that the body has only been in situ for a short time is
14 that there has been no colonization of the remains, not by dipterous
15 larvae but by grass or branches that one would expect to have grown into
16 it if it had been there since it had died. That's the sort of general
17 conclusion that she reaches quite independent of the issue of larvae
19 JUDGE ORIE: You would say it's not just the little animals, but
20 there's more.
21 MR. EMMERSON: Exactly. Can I --
22 MR. GUY-SMITH: That's -- well, hold on for a minute.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Guy-Smith would like to --
24 MR. GUY-SMITH: There also remains another issue which is what is
25 the propriety of the Prosecution moving at this time based upon the
1 information they have received from Professor Lecomte and withdrawing her
2 from the witness list. There's also another legal issue with regard to
3 the prosecutoral duty and obligations to in the broadest sense seek
4 justice and to assist the Trial Chamber independent of the specific issues
5 as they relate to factual matters that have been presented through her
6 report, and we would, if the Court deems it appropriate, wish to give
7 submissions on that issue.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re, there's another question I would have, that
9 is: Is this now -- but perhaps my memory doesn't serve me well enough.
10 Is this the first time that you take the position that the report of
11 Professor Lecomte on this specific aspect is going beyond her expertise or
12 have you expressed this view also at a time when we just had received this
13 report and where others were invited to comment on it. Was it -- at that
14 time did you already say there was no need to comment on that because that
15 part of the report is -- was beyond her expertise anyhow, so we'll not
16 rely on that, we'll just ignore that.
17 [Prosecution counsel confer]
18 JUDGE ORIE: Is my question clear?
19 MR. RE: If your question is directed to when did the Prosecution
20 form the view that Professor Lecomte --
21 JUDGE ORIE: The question was whether you expressed that view for
22 the first time, is that today or was it done earlier? Perhaps, if you
23 hadn't developed it, then you couldn't express it, that's clear. But I
24 just wanted to know if my memory serves me well if my recollection is that
25 I'm now -- it's now for the first time put that Professor Lecomte here
1 went well beyond her expertise as far as this aspect of her report is
3 MR. RE: It probably is the first time we've expressed it in
4 court, but clearly the fact that we sought Mr. Dourel's expertise in July
5 meant that we were thinking about it and especially when the Trial Chamber
6 asked questions to Professor Aleksandric and it became an issue. From
7 when we got it we were concerned about what it said, but whether we
8 expressed it in court before, I don't think so.
9 JUDGE ORIE: Of course for the Chamber to give specific attention
10 to whether the concerns are about the conclusions or about the methods and
11 the expertise of the witnesses -- yes.
12 Anything else at this moment?
13 MR. EMMERSON: Not on that matter. May I turn to the question of
14 exhibits with the next witness.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
16 MR. EMMERSON: Briefly. This morning Mr. Re notified the Defence
17 and the Trial Chamber of a number of exhibits that he proposes to seek to
18 use with the next witness. I don't think there's any question about
19 protective measures in respect of the next witness. I'm pausing.
20 JUDGE ORIE: The Chamber is not aware of any -- next witness, no
21 protective measures applied for nor to be expected.
22 MR. RE: There are no protective measures sought.
23 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
24 MR. EMMERSON: So far as Mr. Repic is concerned, the -- I don't
25 know whether Your Honours have seen the e-mail that was sent by the
1 Prosecution, but in effect the suggestion is that through this witness the
2 Prosecution seeks to use four statements taken from arrested, detained
3 suspects between June of 1998 and March of 1999 concerning the
4 disappearance of Rade Popadic and his colleague. Your Honours will recall
5 Rade Popadic's remains, partial remains, were recovered from the canyon
6 section in September.
7 These statements, Your Honours, are statements that were not taken
8 by this witness whose testimony from his statement makes it clear that he
9 himself has no knowledge, direct or indirect, of the circumstances of
10 their death beyond the fact that having been dispatched from Baballoq to
11 Junik, the two individuals did not arrive at their destination. And we
12 respectfully object to the admission through this witness of statements
13 taken allegedly from suspects under interrogation, who from the content of
14 their statements do not appear to have any direct knowledge and cite no
15 source for allegations that are made that these individuals were arrested
16 and detained and captured and then killed as opposed, for example, to
17 dying in some other way perhaps in the context of an exchange of fire.
18 So they are four statements taken by the security service, and we
19 respectfully object to their introduction through this witness. And
20 indeed given that they are individuals who could properly testify, the
21 Prosecution has given no intention of any intention to take statements
22 from them or to call them. They can be in our submission of no probative
23 value to the Trial Chamber in those circumstances. They're not in the
24 same category as the statements that were examined in relation, for
25 example, to Zenel Alija and Bekim Kalamashi where it was by common
1 agreement that those statements were not put forward as evidence of the
2 truth of their contents but as evidence of the progress of the
3 investigation that was taking place and its integrity. But these, as we
4 say, late statements are in our submission entirely outside that
5 category. This witness is not in a position to speak to them. I think
6 Mr. Re can confirm he's never seen them before. I don't know whether he's
7 been shown them since he arrived in The Hague, but they are entirely
8 outside any evidence that he is in a position to give and we would
9 respectfully submit that they should not be admitted or indeed used in
10 evidence with this witness.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re, would you please respond to that. Also a
12 distinction has been made by Mr. Emmerson between the Kalamashi statements
13 et cetera which he said served some other purpose. Just from the e-mail I
14 cannot see what purpose, what probative value you find in the four
15 statements, the fact that they were given or the truth of their content.
16 I'm not aware of that. Please respond.
17 MR. RE: Well, I express some surprise that Mr. Emmerson has
18 decided to use court time to debate this particular issue when I informed
19 him earlier when he rang me that I did not intend to tender those two
20 statements through the witness but merely have them marked for
21 identification. And when a witness from the DB testifies within the next
22 few months -- sorry, next few weeks, to have that person identify where
23 the statements have come from. The only reason why I would show them to
24 this witness and have them identified as Serbian government statements is
25 to set the process in chain. I'm not intending to tender them through
1 this particular witness.
2 I will make the appropriate submissions at the appropriate time
3 about their relevant and probative weight, given that they are
4 corroborating each other and the events with which this witness will
5 testify about. So my intention is not to tender them, but to show them to
6 the witness, have the witness identify them as Serbian government
7 statements, taken by DB or MUP and leave it at that for the moment.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Guy-Smith.
9 MR. GUY-SMITH: Yes, it would be more appropriate for these
10 statements to be tendered at a time when he has an appropriate witness to
11 deal with that information as opposed to doing it in this fashion. At
12 this time -- and I echo the remarks made by Mr. Emmerson. And it's really
13 cluttering up the record. There's no reason for this to occur at this
14 time. There is no indicia of reliability whatsoever. We have no
15 information at all concerning the circumstances under which these
16 statements were taken --
17 JUDGE ORIE: But I do understand from Mr. Re the main purpose of
18 having them marked for identification and to ask the witness about is to
19 say are these the kind of statements that were recorded at the time and
20 not tendering them, so to that extent if you say would it be more
21 appropriate for these statements to be tendered at a time he has an
22 appropriate witness to deal with that information, as far as the content
23 is concerned, I think that Mr. Re takes the same position. As far as -- I
24 mean, if we would have to recall Mr. Repic at that time to say, Well, this
25 is a kind of document --
1 MR. GUY-SMITH: He won't.
2 JUDGE ORIE: -- produce them at the time --
3 MR. GUY-SMITH: Which he won't. The witness who he seeks to
4 tender the statements through theoretically should be in a position to say
5 these are the kind of statements that are taken by the Serbian police at
6 certain times based on the information that I have from Mr. Re is that he
7 plans on doing that.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Of course the Chamber doesn't know exactly through
9 which witnesses these statements will then later be tendered. Let me just
10 consult my colleagues -- or is there any other -- Mr. Harvey, you have
11 been --
12 MR. HARVEY: I join entirely in everything that's been said, Your
14 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
15 [Trial Chamber confers]
16 JUDGE ORIE: The Chamber within the limits just set out by Mr. Re,
17 that is, he's not going to tender these documents, that, therefore, he's
18 not relying on the truth of the statements which are therein but mainly
19 focusing on the format of the statement as such, the Chamber will not
20 disallow Mr. Re to do that. But as may be clear, of course the Chamber is
21 not aware yet of the circumstances under which Mr. Re thinks that he could
22 tender them as far as to their content. And of course the Chamber will
23 then consider whether it's appropriate to do that. And if they then are
24 tendered and if we would decide that they would be admitted, then of
25 course we have a statement of the present witness on -- on the format.
1 Of course the Chamber is not aware whether it will be a person who
2 made a lot of these statements who will be the witness later on through
3 which to tender or someone who gave the statement who might not be fully
4 familiar with the usual way of putting statements on paper. So therefore,
5 within the limited -- within the limited purpose set out by Mr. Re, the
6 Chamber will not disallow him to have these documents marked for
8 MR. GUY-SMITH: With that in mind, when Mr. Re chooses to have
9 those documents marked for identification, just so that we don't have a
10 slippage in terms of issues that come up in the future, could he please
11 identify specifically for the record that these are the documents we have
12 been discussing.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re, if you at a certain moment tender them say
14 you remember these are the documents already -- he will have to do that
15 because he will have to refer to the MFI number, which eventually might
16 become an exhibit number. So therefore, I think the procedures in place
17 already make it reasonable to expect --
18 MR. GUY-SMITH: Fine, I'm in your hands.
19 JUDGE ORIE: -- that attention will be drawn to that.
20 MR. RE: For the record, they're in Rule 65 ter Exhibit 1973
21 [sic], four documents within that one.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, that's not exactly what -- but let's -- there
23 seems to be no problem in this respect.
24 Mr. Re, are you ready to call your next witness and who's going to
25 examine the witness?
1 MR. RE: Me.
2 JUDGE ORIE: It will be you.
3 MR. RE: Mr. Rade Repic, I call him.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
5 Mr. Usher.
6 [The witness entered court]
7 JUDGE ORIE: Good afternoon, Mr. Repic. Can you hear me in a
8 language you understand?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, yes, I can.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Before you give evidence in this court, the Rules of
11 Procedure and Evidence require you to make a solemn declaration that you
12 will speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
13 Mr. Usher will now hand out this solemn declaration, the text of it. May
14 I invite you to make that solemn declaration.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
16 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Repic. Please be seated. You'll
18 first be examined by Mr. Re, counsel for the Prosecution.
19 WITNESS: RADE REPIC
20 [Witness answered through interpreter]
21 Examination by Mr. Re:
22 Q. Good afternoon. Your name is Rade Repic?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Your date of birth is the 2nd of December, 1965?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. And you are currently an officer in the Serbian gendarmerie?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. What rank do you hold?
4 A. Lieutenant-colonel.
5 Q. And you're based in Novi Sad?
6 A. No. I live in a town in western Serbia and I work in Novi Sad.
7 Q. That's what I meant, but I'll take you through -- I'll just take
8 you through some brief details. You went to JNA military academy in 1986?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. From 1990 to 1992 you worked in the MUP in Belgrade as an
11 assistant commander of a police station?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And from 1992 to 1995 in Mali Zvornik, assistant commander of a
14 police station there?
15 A. I started off as deputy commander and I very soon became a
16 commander of the police station.
17 Q. And from 1995 to 2001, were you the commander of the police
18 station at Sabac in Serbia?
19 A. The Loznica section within the secretariat of Sabac.
20 Q. Did you join the PJP, or the special police forces, of Serbia?
21 A. Yes, I did, in 1992.
22 Q. What was its role within the Serbian MUP?
23 A. The role of the special police units, the PJP, in the period
24 between 1992 and the end of 1999 was to maintain law and order, which had
25 been disrupted in areas such as Belgrade and so on and so forth and to
1 assist certain units such as the units in Kosovo where security situations
2 were impaired.
3 Q. How did the duties of the PJP differ from those of the regular
5 A. The difference lay in the fact that the equipment which the PJP
6 units had was of a higher level, the training they underwent was stricter
7 and more complex, and the unit -- the tasks performed by the PJP units
8 were of a more complex nature and involved emergency situations,
9 incidents, and so on.
10 Q. What was the difference in weaponry the PJP had compared with
11 those of the regular police?
12 A. In Serbia all the members of the MUP had short-barrelled and
13 long-barrelled weapons. The PJP units, in addition to these weapons,
14 whenever the units were used as formations they were also wielding
15 machine-guns and anti-aircraft machine-guns, which meant that they did
16 have more sophisticated weaponry.
17 Q. What about vehicles?
18 A. The vehicles, too, differed of course. The regular police forces
19 used passenger vehicles, whereas the members of PJP units used all-terrain
20 vehicles as well, such as Mitsubishi, Nissan makes, TAM-100s, I don't know
21 how to explain this, but these were trucks.
22 Q. What about armoured personnel carriers, did the PJP have those?
23 A. They had APCs, but also these were combat armoured vehicles.
24 Q. Tanks?
25 A. No.
1 Q. Kalashnikovs?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. RPGs?
4 A. Can you repeat, please?
5 Q. Rocket-propelled grenades.
6 A. I apologise, I -- you mean hand-held rocket-launchers?
7 Q. Yes. Did you have them in the PJP?
8 A. Yes, we did.
9 Q. And how did the uniforms of the PJP differ from those of the
10 regular police?
11 A. The regular units of the Ministry of the Interior, i.e.,
12 policemen, wore quite a different uniform which was blue in colour with
13 short-sleeved shirts and peaked caps, whereas members of the PJP units
14 wore camouflage uniforms with greyish colours. They wore caps and
15 protective equipment.
16 Q. So they were distinctively different?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. The reporting chains, how did they differ from those of the
19 regular police, that is, the subordination upwards?
20 A. The chain of command within the PJPs started off with the squad
21 leader, who had up to ten men under him; the next in line was the platoon
22 commander who had 25 men; the next level is that of a company commander
23 who had about 130 to 150 men under his command; and then the commander of
24 a battalion or a detachment who had three to four companies under him
25 depending on the formation.
1 Q. What I'm after is how they reported upwards as compared to the
2 regular police? Was there a separate reporting chain of command?
3 A. Yes, there was a separate chain of command. From the lowest level
4 the reporting went up to the highest level. The squad commander reported
5 to the platoon commander, the platoon commander in turn reported to the
6 company commander, who reported to his detachment commander.
7 Q. What I'm after is: Who did they report to after that, the
8 minister of the interior or someone else?
9 A. The detachment commanders reported to the gendarmerie commander or
10 to the person authorised by him, the person who had been authorised by the
11 gendarmerie commander to be in charge of a given action.
12 Q. Where did General Obrad Stevanovic fit in here, what was his job?
13 A. General Obrad Stevanovic was assistant to the minister at the time
14 and was in charge of PJPs.
15 Q. Was that a separate reporting line to that of the normal police?
16 That's all I want you to tell us.
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. In 1998, were you a company commander in the PJP, that is, you
19 just described having about 130 to 150 men under their command?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. What did your duties as a company commander involve, just very
23 A. Duties of a company commander are to take care that his unit is at
24 full strength, to conduct training of his unit, to prepare his unit for
25 activities out in the field, to be in command of the unit in the course of
1 security-related activities and tasks, to deal with any problems that may
2 arise, and to report on any important events or problems to his immediate
3 superior I suppose.
4 Q. And in 1998 who was your immediate superior when you were a
5 company commander?
6 A. My immediate superior was Colonel Branko Prljevic.
7 Q. And where was he based?
8 A. I don't understand fully.
9 Q. Where did he work from? Where was he physically located?
10 A. It's difficult to answer that question. In 1998 we had various
11 assignments and actions, and this dictated where he was based. We can say
12 that he spent most of the time in the northern part of Kosovo, that's to
13 say in Kosovska Mitrovica.
14 Q. Were you deployed to Kosovo in 1998, just yes or no?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. How many times?
17 A. Between four and five perhaps, I can't tell you exactly, but not
18 less than that.
19 Q. When did you first go there in 1998?
20 A. I wouldn't be able to give you the exact date, but I believe it
21 was in March of 1998.
22 Q. Did you say March?
23 A. March, yes.
24 Q. Why did you go to Kosovo the first time?
25 A. We were sent to Kosovo for the first time in order to assist the
1 local security forces because the security situation in Srbica was quite
3 Q. Where did you go in March 1998? Where were you deployed to?
4 A. In the month of March of 1998 we were deployed to the hunting
5 ammunition factory and the local police station.
6 Q. How long were you there for?
7 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please repeat the name of the
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Every time I was engaged in Kosovo,
10 I was engaged for the duration of four to six weeks. I wouldn't be able
11 to tell you for that particular occasion. I could tell you that I was
12 there for about a month.
13 MR. RE:
14 Q. When did you go to Junik?
15 A. We went to Junik in the second half of May.
16 Q. When you say "we," did you take a unit with you from Sabac?
17 A. Of course. When I say "we went," I meant my unit and I.
18 Q. How many were in this unit?
19 A. I don't recall the exact number, but the entire company went
20 there. I suppose that there were around 130 men.
21 Q. How did you get there, by bus?
22 A. We travelled to Kosovska Mitrovica by bus and then via Istok and
23 Pec to Decani, Junik, and Babaloc. We travelled in a convoy with escort.
24 Q. What do you mean by an escort?
25 A. By an escort I meant the security assistance provided by PJP
1 members who were supposed to be relieved by that particular reinforcement
2 and who were in APCs.
3 Q. How long did your unit remain in Kosovo in the Junik area in May?
4 A. The entire month of May and part of June, perhaps until mid-June.
5 Q. Why was your unit sent to Junik?
6 A. Just as was the case with the month of March, we went to Junik to
7 assist local police units.
8 Q. Why did they require assistance?
9 A. In that period, the intelligence obtained and the local situation
10 indicated that the members of Albanian ethnicity started organizing armed
11 units by arming their members, and they started attacking settlements that
12 were predominantly Serb as well as Albanian settlements that had sided
13 with the Serbs, loyal to Serbs.
14 Q. And which group was doing this?
15 A. Do you mean which group exerted pressure?
16 Q. Yes.
17 A. Our intelligence at the time indicated that these were Albanians
18 from the local settlements near Decani around Junik and around Djakovica.
19 Q. Did your intelligence tell you anything about the existence of the
21 A. In this period they were working intensely on building up the KLA.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re, I would like to have one clarification.
23 Witness, you said in that period the intelligence obtained and the
24 local situation indicated that the members and they started attacking
25 settlements, members of what exactly were you referring to?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I was referring to persons who gave
2 their allegiance to the KLA.
3 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. But members, because the previous question was
4 about assistance to local police units. So when you were referring to
5 members you were not referring to members of the police units but members
6 of another type of organization?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. Perhaps I wasn't clear
8 enough. I meant the local authorities, our colleagues who worked in local
9 police stations.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. And you said that those members of those who
11 were working in the police stations, they started attacking and
12 reorganizing -- they started attacking settlements which were
13 predominantly Serb but also Albanian settlements that had sided with the
14 Serbs. Is that -- so police persons organizing themselves to attack local
15 settlements or -- I'm still struggling with the word "member" you used or
16 was it your intention to say that by organizing themselves and attacking
17 settlements they became members of those units or that finally performed
18 these attacks?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I will clarify this. We were sent
20 there to help the local authorities, i.e., the local police units because
21 ethnic Albanians, members of the Albanian people started arming themselves
22 up. As a result of this, vehicles travelling along roads came under
23 frequent attacks, as did settlements predominantly inhabited by Serbs.
24 And there was pressure put to bear on Albanians who were loyal to Serbs,
25 to Serb representatives of the local authorities.
1 JUDGE ORIE: Please proceed.
2 MR. RE:
3 Q. A little earlier you said that when you arrived you came in buses
4 with armed escort. You said you were in a convoy with armed escort. Why
5 did you require armed escort?
6 A. Escort was necessary because from Sipolj, which is a place on the
7 outskirts of Kosovska Mitrovica, all the way through to Decani and
8 Djakovica, along that route there were frequent attacks on vehicles driven
9 by civilians and particularly targeted were police vehicles travelling
11 Q. What was your information about who was doing the attacking?
12 A. The information I spoke a moment -- spoke of a moment ago which
13 indicated that local Albanians were getting organized, those who were
14 loyal to the KLA more and more, and that as they were getting armed their
15 attacks increased and their armed formations grew.
16 Q. What weaponry did you take with you to Kosovo in May 1998?
17 A. The regular weapons I already mentioned that PJP members normally
18 held which were short-barrelled weapons, pistol; long-barrelled weapons,
19 rifle; machine-guns; and hand-held rocket-launchers.
20 Q. Were there refugees in the Junik area?
21 A. Yes. In the Junik and Babaloc areas there was -- there were
22 refugee settlements holding the population that fled from the areas of
23 Albania, Croatia, Bosnia, and other war-struck areas at the time.
24 Q. Well, let's go to Junik. Where were the refugees in Junik?
25 A. As you set off from Decani in the direction of Junik, about a
1 kilometre ahead of the village of Junik there is a refugee settlement
2 holding, or rather, which held or had about a hundred houses complete with
3 infrastructure and ready to receive and accommodate refugees.
4 Q. Where were those refugees from? What was their ethnicity?
5 A. As I said, the refugees came from Albania among other places. I
6 do recall that there were two or three families from the village of
7 Vrane. This remained etched in my memory. There were also refugees from
8 Bosnia and Croatia there.
9 Q. Were they Serbian refugees from Bosnia and Croatia?
10 A. I suppose that they were Serbs -- or at least most of them were.
11 I wouldn't be able to tell you exactly now. Perhaps there were people of
12 other ethnicities too.
13 Q. Had the accommodation been built specifically to house the
14 refugees or was it already there when they arrived?
15 A. I don't know what had existed in the area before the refugee
16 settlement was built. What I do know for a fact is that the settlement
17 was brand new, it had been recently built, it had the necessary
18 infrastructure, the roads, the community building, health centre, police
19 station, all the necessary infrastructure you need to have for a
20 settlement to operate.
21 Q. Let's go to the refugees in Babaloc. Can you describe the refugee
22 situation there?
23 A. Two-thirds of the unit under my command was based in Babaloc. The
24 situation was identical as in Junik. The refugees from these regions also
25 had their accommodation there. The refugee settlement was identical to
1 the one in Junik in terms of its structure, size, resources, and so on,
2 except that it was located 4 to 5 kilometres or perhaps even 6 to 7
3 kilometres from it. It was on the left side of the road travelling from
4 Decani to Djakovica. What was more characteristic is that it was further
5 in the territory under the control of the KLA during that period of time.
6 Q. What was the ethnicity of the refugees then accommodated in
8 A. I wouldn't be able to tell you that precisely, but I know for a
9 fact that they came from different regions.
10 Q. Were they Serbian, to your knowledge, or Serb?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. You just said two-thirds of your unit was based in Babaloc. Was
13 the other third based in Junik?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Were the members of your unit staying in the same accommodation as
16 the refugees?
17 A. That's correct. In both refugee settlements we used houses on the
18 outskirts for accommodating our unit, the houses that did not have
19 refugees living in them.
20 Q. Were you in Junik or Babaloc?
21 A. I was in Junik.
22 Q. What was the security situation in relation to the refugees in
23 Junik and in Babaloc, firstly dealing with Junik?
24 A. Upon my arrival in Junik, my arrival and that of my unit, we
25 realised that the situation was a bit more favourable in Junik and this is
1 why we opted to base there only one-third of the deployed unit. The
2 village of Junik was known as one of the largest villages in the former
3 Yugoslavia. The estimates were that the village had between 7 and 9.000
4 inhabitants at the time. During that period of time in cooperation with
5 the commander of the local police we went frequently into the village for
6 patrol duty. We communicated with local residents, and we visited the
7 Serb houses which were on the outskirts of Junik, a couple of them were.
8 Q. Were there any attacks on refugees in Junik during the month you
9 were there from May to June 1998?
10 A. During that period of time, there were no instances of provocation
11 by Junik residents against the refugees, in the refugee settlement. The
12 refugees mostly encountered problems when they went to Decani for their
13 own personal needs. On their way there, they would be met and mistreated
14 or their IDs checked by illegal organs, that is to say, uniformed
15 individuals representing the KLA.
16 Q. How did you come to know about this?
17 A. Fortunately, the majority of people who had encountered problems
18 returned back to the refugee settlement and this is how we learned about
20 Q. You said the majority returned back. Are you suggesting that some
21 didn't return?
22 A. Well, I wouldn't be able to say precisely. There were cases where
23 it was reported that a certain refugee had not returned; however, it
24 remained unresolved whether they had been taken away by the KLA or whether
25 their departure from the refugee settlement was of their own accord.
1 Q. A moment ago you said that some refugees would be met and
2 mistreated or their IDs checked by people representing the KLA. What do
3 you know about them being mistreated?
4 A. Well, the mere fact that an armed group of people stopped you on
5 the road, that they took you out of your car, searched you, confiscated
6 your documents, IDs, and so on, made your situation unsafe and it was
7 certainly unpleasant for people experiencing this.
8 Q. Let's go to Babaloc. You talked about Junik. Let's go to the
9 refugees and the security situation of the refugees in Babaloc in May/June
10 1998. How did it differ from Junik?
11 A. The difference between the refugee settlement in Babaloc and that
12 one in Junik was that the one in Babaloc was closer to the villages where
13 the KLA was in majority and where it was almost impossible for local
14 authorities to operate in safe conditions. One couldn't send a single
15 patrol of local policemen to carry out any task in the villages that were
16 in the hinterland of Babaloc. In addition to that, there were daily
17 provocations against the village of Babaloc, the refugees in the Babaloc
18 refugee settlement, and the units securing them. Those were armed
20 Q. Can you just please describe to the Trial Chamber what you mean by
21 armed provocations; what happened?
22 A. When I say "provocations," I'm referring to a situation where you
23 had daily problems with your security organs who were in observation
24 posts, where they were supposed to take -- to ensure safety of the
25 citizens, and they came under fire, they were fired at. So we needed
1 trenches, we needed to ensure safety for those people so that they could
2 carry out their duties properly.
3 Q. Where were these observation posts?
4 A. In the outskirts of the settlement, near the Rastavica
5 intersection, near the villages around Radonjic Lake and at the elevation
6 which is above Babaloc, I'm now having difficulty remembering the exact
7 toponym, but it was some sort of an elevation, feature.
8 Q. Are you referring to Erecka Suka?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. You referred a moment ago to -- you said one couldn't send a
11 single patrol of local police to carry out any task in the villages that
12 were in the hinterland of Babaloc. Which area are you referring to when
13 you say the hinterland of Babaloc?
14 A. Towards Radonjic Lake, towards the following villages: Rznic,
15 Dubrava, and another five or six villages there, towards the lake, on the
16 left side of the road travelling from Decani.
17 Q. Was the MUP or PJP able to go into that area at that time, that
18 is, the villages you just referred to?
19 A. Well, unless there was a dire necessity, even PJP would not enter
20 those villages because it had already been clear what was under the
21 control of the KLA. And protection was provided only in order to unblock
22 the roads and in order to ensure normal daily activities for people.
23 Q. Can you just clarify what you mean by the last line, "protection
24 was provided only in order to unblock the roads," which roads are you
25 referring to?
1 A. I'm referring to the main roads between the following centres:
2 Djakovica, Decani, Pec, and when I say that we did not enter villages
3 unless there was a dire necessity, I mean to say that we did our best to
4 avoid provoking any clashes.
5 Q. You mean with the KLA?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. When you were there in Junik and Babaloc in May to June 1998, did
8 you or your unit go into those villages, that is, to the left of the road
9 from Decan?
10 A. We were not given such tasks.
11 Q. Were there any attacks on refugees in or from Babaloc in May/June
12 1998 when you were there?
13 A. I don't remember that any longer.
14 Q. What was your information about how many KLA were in the area on
15 the left of the Decan road?
16 A. Our official intelligence indicated that during that period of
17 time in that sector around a dozen or so villages in that area, there were
18 already 600 armed and trained members of the KLA. There was information
19 indicating that there was a far greater number of armed men who only
20 possessed weapons but did not have full equipment, uniform and everything
22 Q. Were there any KLA check-points to your knowledge on local roads
23 or main roads in that period in that area?
24 A. There were local check-points and there were armed guards in front
25 of every village on the local roads. I would use a military term for
1 them, in fact, and I would call them ambushes and not guards.
2 Q. How did you know they were there?
3 A. Every attempt on the part of local authorities was thwarted either
4 by stopping them, checking them, or opening fire against policemen.
5 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re, I'm looking at the clock. Would this be a
6 suitable time to have a break?
7 MR. RE: Indeed.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Then we'll have a break until a quarter past 4.00.
9 --- Recess taken at 3.48 p.m.
10 --- On resuming at 4.16 p.m.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Before we -- I give you an opportunity, Mr. Re, to
12 continue the examination-in-chief of the witness, the Chamber has
13 considered the -- has considered the issue raised in view of experts to be
14 called. First of all, Mr. Repic, I have to deal with a matter which
15 doesn't affect you in any way at this moment, so I apologise for raising a
16 matter. Just Ignore what I'm saying. I'm addressing the parties at this
18 Mr. Re, the Chamber is inclined to believe that it would assist
19 the Chamber to hear all the expert evidence related to the matters we
20 discussed before the break. That would mean that it is suggested that you
21 would call the expert Lecomte and not only the expert Dourel. At the same
22 time, the Chamber is a bit concerned about having witnesses here, sending
23 them back home, recalling them in order to respond to all the criticisms.
24 I think that a well-accepted - but please correct me when I'm wrong - a
25 well-accepted difference between witnesses and experts is that usually
1 experts, unlike witnesses, are allowed to attend the testimony of other
2 experts so that they have first-hand knowledge of what the other expert
4 I also do understand that you have some difficulties in getting
5 other witnesses for later today. So the Chamber has asked itself whether
6 it would still be possible to explore the possibility of having witnesses
7 Lecomte and Dourel in court, both of them by let's say Wednesday and
8 Thursday. I do understand that it doesn't entirely fit into your plans,
9 but at the same time -- of course the Chamber is less concerned about who
10 comes first and who responds at what moment to whatever criticism the one
11 has expressed in view of the opinions of the other. So there is still an
12 opportunity that the expert could even follow the proceedings if it would
13 be impossible to have two experts together in court. It would still be a
14 possibility to -- even the internet would or a videotape or video -- DVD
15 would make that possible, because it doesn't make much sense to put all
16 kind of questions to experts, referring to what the other expert said with
17 the -- the expert himself is far better equipped to understand what the
18 other expert had said.
19 Mr. Re, at this moment the Chamber has not made any decisions, but
20 I think we understood at least from what you said that you were willing to
21 seriously consider what the Chamber -- what the Chamber thought would
22 assist it.
23 MR. RE: If the Chamber wants Professor Lecomte, we will call
24 Professor Lecomte. In terms of the scheduling, I understand that
25 Mr. Dourel is available on Tuesday and Wednesday this week only and then
1 not again until October. I have no idea about Professor Lecomte and I
2 don't know about her ability to read an English transcript and I very much
3 doubt there would be a French transcript available by Thursday.
4 JUDGE ORIE: We have no transcripts available, but I always have
5 to ask the technicians to what extent the French channel with the video
6 would already be available and I do not know whether the French
7 translation can be followed on the internet. I think it could. I'm not
8 quite sure, but certainly something to explore because then we could even
9 consider to invite -- of course to the extent possible, I don't know
10 whether Professor Lecomte has -- might have a very busy schedule, but if
11 she could follow part of the testimony given by the expert Dourel and then
12 join Wednesday, that even might be a solution. But the Chamber would
13 suggest that you actively explore possibilities to have the evidence of
14 both these experts before the Chamber, and preferably in such a way that
15 we don't have to do things five, six times. That would be our
17 If there's any comment on it which the Chamber would have to
18 consider, then of course the Prosecution -- the Defence is in a position
19 to raise that now, although we don't want to have a full debate again on
20 the matter, but just if this is totally unworkable or fundamentally
21 opposed by the Defence, then of course we would like to know.
22 MR. EMMERSON: Not at all, subject to practicalities, it's a
23 course that in our submission commends itself.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
25 Then, Mr. Re, having dealt with this matter you're invited to
1 continue the examination with the witness.
2 Mr. Repic, we now turn to you again. Again apologies for dealing
3 with other matters which were of some urgency.
4 Mr. Re.
5 MR. RE:
6 Q. Mr. Repic, before the break -- just excuse me for one moment.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Perhaps if one of the parties could assist me, I
8 tried to find a photograph Babaloc hill on which the settlement appears,
9 but I can't find the number at this moment. If anyone could help me.
10 MR. EMMERSON: I am in a position to deal with that during
12 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, but could you give me the number already so that
13 I can --
14 MR. EMMERSON: I can. It's D111 and D112.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you very much.
16 Please proceed, Mr. Re.
17 MR. RE:
18 Q. Before the break we were -- I was asking you about the KLA
19 check-points and you were telling the Trial Chamber that you would call
20 them ambushes and not guards on the village entrances and exits. In the
21 period you were there, May/June 1998, was there any difference in the KLA
22 activities at night to those in day; and if so, can you tell the Trial
23 Chamber what was happening at night?
24 A. Our information, what we were able to observe and register from
25 our positions, positions from which we secured these two settlements,
1 indicated that there was a certain activity of Albanians in the hinterland
2 of the Junik village; that is to say in the area between Junik and the
3 state border with Albania. All of that was taking place during
4 night-time, late evening and early morning hours, where on a nightly basis
5 we registered movements of a large number of motorised vehicles,
6 tractors. There was certain activity which was not typical for a village
7 which doesn't have illumination and all of that. All of this activity
8 indicated that there were certain preparations going on. People were
9 coming and going from the state border.
10 Q. What were they doing?
11 A. We supposed that during that period of time the activities that we
12 could directly observe meant that they were using local roads to go to the
13 state border and then bring in weapons and ammunition, that is to say
14 military equipment, from the state border back.
15 Q. Now, moving --
16 MR. GUY-SMITH: Excuse me.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
18 MR. GUY-SMITH: To the extent that that answer is speculative I
19 think causes problems. He can say what he observed and I have no
20 difficulty with what the gentleman observed. With regard to what was the
21 purpose of any movement, there's no information whatsoever at this point
22 that develops that point other than the speculation on this witness's
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. At the same time the question was clear what
25 they were doing, and the witness spontaneously gave the answer as he gave
1 it. So therefore Mr. Re can proceed, and it's rather a comment to the
2 testimony than anything else at this moment, Mr. Guy-Smith.
3 Please proceed, Mr. Re.
4 MR. RE:
5 Q. Moving to another area now, and that is Rade Popadic and Nikola
6 Jovanovic. Who was Rade Popadic?
7 A. Rade Popadic was a member of the Ministry of the Interior and he
8 worked as the head of sector in the Secretariat of the Interior in Sabac.
9 That was his regular job as policeman, and then within the PJP unit he was
10 a platoon commander from the Secretariat of the Interior in Sabac.
11 MR. RE: Could I just interpose for one moment and ask through the
12 Trial Chamber whether the Defence have given us the notification of the
13 exhibits they intend to use in cross-examination. We're just trying to
14 locate them.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Has this notification been given?
16 MR. GUY-SMITH: Yes, to the extent that we are going to rely on
17 any exhibits is those that have already been forwarded to them.
18 MR. RE: We can't find them. We kindly ask if they would send
19 them --
20 JUDGE ORIE: The question is whether it was sent by e-mail or any
21 other way?
22 MR. RE: I just can't find them in our trial support account. I
23 just ask if they could resend it because we can't locate it.
24 JUDGE ORIE: If you could send another copy, that would be
1 Mr. Re, where I earlier said to Mr. Guy-Smith that it was comment
2 on the testimony rather than anything else, of course would not mean that
3 an answer which starts by saying: "We supposed that during that period of
4 time the activities that we could directly observe ..." There is some
5 intrinsic problem is what is just a supposition and what is an
6 observation, which is of course not clear in the answer.
7 MR. RE: I'll develop that.
8 Q. If you recall, Mr. Repic, a few moments ago, you told the Trial
9 Chamber that based on your observations you supposed that they were going
10 to the state border and bringing in weapons and ammunition, that is,
11 military equipment from the state border of Albania, what did you see or
12 hear that led you to conclude that they were bringing in the weapons in
13 from Albania?
14 A. Given that this was during night-time, it was difficult to see
15 anything. But what one could hear and conclude based on observation and
16 registering all movements was that there was an activity of motorised
17 vehicles from the village of Junik using local roads in the direction of
18 the border. I can also add that there was a situation where there was no
19 electricity in an entire region and then quite -- quite unusually you see
20 a hamlet that is all illuminated because they have generators producing
21 power, then in the military sense it means that it is a good orientation
22 point for whoever is moving from the border without using any lights.
23 Q. What time of the night are you talking about, the sudden
24 illumination occurring?
25 MR. GUY-SMITH: Excuse me, he didn't say "sudden."
1 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re.
2 MR. RE:
3 Q. Whatever type of illumination, sudden or otherwise, what time of
4 night are you talking about it occurring?
5 A. This occurred in the late evening hours starting from 11.00 p.m.
6 through to 5.00 a.m., but at any rate it was night hours.
7 Q. What led you to believe that weapons were coming from Albania,
8 that is, the traffic was coming from Albania as opposed to going the other
10 A. I will go back to the official information that we received from
11 both military and civilian bodies collecting intelligence, which indicated
12 that in the period before 1998 there was the toppling of the regime in
13 Albania, and the weapons of the sort we're discussing could be purchased
14 at low price. All the supply channels of the then-KLA originated in
15 Albania, since the possibilities of purchasing weapons there were on the
17 Q. Just what I'm trying to get at is: What was it about the
18 illumination of the village between 11.00 and 5.00 which led you to
19 believe it was being used to guide people bringing weapons from Albania?
20 A. If you look at it topographically, the state border with Albania
21 is at a given level above the sea. The border area goes down into a
22 valley where the villages of Junik, Babaloc, and others are situated, as
23 well as the road from Pec to Djakovica. If you need to complete any sort
24 of activity without the assistance of the state border and the area around
25 the border, you only need one landmark which is well illuminated. If you
1 end up in a valley, the moment you go uphill again you will be able to
2 observe the landmark that will serve as an orientation point for your
4 Q. How many times did you see this in May/June 1998?
5 A. I can't give you the precise number. Several times in that period
6 of time. Since we worked in shifts, I suppose that others who were
7 present there observed the same sort of thing.
8 Q. And what was the PJP response to seeing this?
9 A. Specifically, I can only speak of the PJP members who made up my
10 company. Since we had the specific assignment of securing the refugee
11 settlements of Junik and Babaloc, we responded to what we saw by reporting
12 to the superior commands with a view to taking certain measures.
13 Q. Did you go out at night to see what was happening? Did you send
14 some patrols out to those illuminated villages is what I'm asking.
15 A. I did not.
16 Q. Why not?
17 A. I've tried to explain to you that my task was to secure the
18 refugee settlement. Such a type of engagement would run contrary to the
19 task that I had been given.
20 Q. Were you aware of any other, apart from your own unit within the
21 PJP, any other unit of the MUP or the PJP responding to villages
22 illuminated at night by perhaps going up and seeing what was going on?
23 A. Since the locations were situated on the other side - let me
24 explain this to you in topographic terms - on the other side of these
25 settlements and that other side having been under the KLA control. I
1 don't know whether any of the units attempted to enter those villages and
2 find out what was going on and why. I think that would have been far too
3 risky and would have incurred unwanted consequences.
4 MR. RE: Is there anything else on that that the Trial Chamber is
5 interested in?
6 JUDGE ORIE: There's only -- the witness in his last answer
7 said "locations were situated on the other side" and that other side
8 having been under the KLA control. That's not entirely clear what you
9 mean by the other side, the other side of something, or could you please
10 further explain that.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I will try to explain this once
12 more. The state border with Albania is located at a certain level above
13 the sea. From the state border inwards, the land goes downhill slightly
14 leading to the villages that I spoke of, Babaloc and Junik and others, and
15 this is the road leading from Decani to Djakovica. On the other side of
16 that particular road, the -- there is higher ground, it's a gentle slope,
17 and it was on that side that the illumination could be observed, that sort
18 that was used as an orientation point, as a reference point. Had it been
19 otherwise, the lights would not have been visible.
20 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Last question is: You explained all this to us
21 as why you thought they were smuggling -- smuggling, why they were
22 importing weapons. Now, could a similar observation not observed whatever
23 other contraband or even whatever other legal stuff to be imported or I
24 mean, where's the link with the weapons specifically?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Since we're discussing the period of
1 time when the KLA was working intensively on setting up armed formations
2 and was arming at a much greater speed than before, we concluded that this
3 is the sort of merchandise that was involved. Given the period of time,
4 or rather, it could have been other merchandise, generally speaking. But
5 given the period of time and the circumstances in which it was going on,
6 we inferred that weapons were the merchandise that was being smuggled.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you.
8 Please proceed, Mr. Re.
9 MR. RE:
10 Q. Now, I've asked you about Rade Popadic. Who was Nikola Jovanovic?
11 A. Nikola Jovanovic was a member of the Ministry of the Interior
12 holding the rank of sergeant, and he worked in the local police station of
13 the municipality of Ljubovija. He was a young person, he wasn't married,
14 he was a good person and a good member of the KLA.
15 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction: His rank was
17 MR. RE: I think you just said "good member of the KLA." Was that
18 the correction you made?
19 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction: The MUP.
20 MR. RE:
21 Q. Were both Rade Popadic and Nikola Jovanovic members of your PJP
23 A. The mistake you mentioned is something I haven't heard, but I do
24 repeat. They were good members of the police and they were members of the
25 company I was in command of.
1 Q. Did they come with you from Sabac in May 1998 to Junik?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Where were they accommodated?
4 A. They were accommodated in the refugee settlement of Junik.
5 Q. Where were -- where was your unit getting its food and daily
6 supplies from when you were based in Junik?
7 A. The logistics support of my unit was received from the Djakovica
8 secretariat and we received our food-supplies from the kitchens of the
9 Djakovica secretariat.
10 Q. How did they get from Djakovica to Babaloc and Junik?
11 A. In that period of time, precisely due to frequent attacks on
12 police vehicles travelling individually and without escort, we resorted to
13 all sorts of things, to go at unpredicted times, to use different types of
14 vehicles, to have our PJP members travel in civilian clothes in order to
15 be as inconspicuous as possible and avoid possible provocations en route
16 as far as possible.
17 Q. How often was your unit being supplied with food from Djakovica?
18 A. On a daily basis.
19 Q. How many times per day?
20 A. Once.
21 Q. What happened with Rade Popadic and Nikola Jovanovic? Go back to
22 the last day you saw them.
23 A. The last day I saw them alive we had regular morning activities
24 which meant getting up, touring the units, conducting controls and
25 inspections in the military sense. I had a morning meeting with Rade
1 Popadic in order to exchange information and issue tasks and solve
2 whatever current issues there were. We went to -- which involved also
3 going to the Djakovica secretariat and picking up the food-supplies for
4 the entire unit for the day and returning to Junik.
5 Q. Are you saying you had a morning briefing?
6 A. It could be put that way, yes.
7 Q. At about what time approximately in the morning?
8 A. Most often it took place between 7.30 and 8.00. There was no
9 strict time set aside for the briefing. It was dictated by the
10 obligations and tasks the unit was faced with.
11 Q. To the best of your recollection, what was the date that you last
12 saw Rade Popadic and Nikola Jovanovic?
13 A. If I remember correctly, it was on the 23rd of May.
14 Q. 1998?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. How sure are you about the correctness of that precise date now,
17 nine years later?
18 A. You see, you're right in saying that nine years later a person may
19 make a mistake with regard to the date. I believe it was on the 23rd of
20 May; if I'm mistaken, don't take it against me.
21 Q. What did you decide at your morning briefing with Mr. Popadic in
22 relation to obtaining the food-supplies in Djakovica?
23 A. On that day we agreed that we would use a civilian vehicle that
24 had been provisionally seized by the Junik police unit, and we agreed that
25 Rade Popadic and another PJP member should take the vehicle and head for
1 Djakovica and that -- ultimately that they should return to Junik.
2 When I say another member of the PJP, I want to stress the
3 following. According to the schedule, instead of Nikola Jovanovic,
4 another person was assigned to that task, but because of some private
5 commitments the schedule was changed that morning and Rade Popadic and
6 Nikola Jovanovic went on that task.
7 Q. Can you remember what sort of car they had?
8 A. I remember that it was confiscated vehicle and I believe it was an
9 Opel Kadett if I'm not mistaken.
10 Q. Were Mr. Popadic and Jovanovic in civilian clothes or in uniform?
11 A. They were in civilian clothes with official weapons.
12 Q. What do you mean by official weapons?
13 A. Official weapons to be carried on duty meant long-barrelled
14 weapons, that is to say rifles --
15 Q. Do you remember whether --
16 A. -- pistol.
17 Q. I'm sorry, are you saying rifles and pistols?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Okay. Do you remember whether the car had number plates, its
20 licence plates, or not?
21 A. Yes, it had licence plates issued to the local secretariat.
22 Q. What -- are you saying police number plates? This is the civilian
23 car which had been requisitioned?
24 A. No. They were civilian licence plates that were from the area of
1 Q. What food-supplies were they supposed to obtain in Djakovica?
2 A. From the MUP secretariat in Djakovica, the kitchens there, they
3 were supposed to collect two sets of lunch packets for the following day
4 and a cooked meal for that day.
5 Q. Are you saying a hot lunch?
6 A. Yes, yes, a hot lunch, that's to say a cooked meal.
7 Q. And was that for your unit both in Babaloc and in Junik?
8 A. That's correct.
9 Q. Were they supposed to travel to Djakovica, pick up the food, drop
10 it in -- drop some in Babaloc, then return to Junik with the remainder of
11 it; is that the plan?
12 MR. GUY-SMITH: If Mr. Re --
13 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Guy-Smith.
14 MR. GUY-SMITH: If Mr. Re could refrain from leading from now on.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Re. Please proceed.
16 MR. RE:
17 Q. What was the intended route and plan, Mr. Repic?
18 A. The plan was that Rade Popadic and Nikola Jovanovic should take
19 the vehicle and go to the Secretariat of the Interior in Djakovica and
20 pick up the lunch packets and the hot meal, and then on their way back to
21 drop by in the refugees' settlement in Babaloc, which was en route, to
22 unload the meals for the unit there and to resume their journey to Junik
23 bringing the rest of the meals intended for the unit there.
24 Q. Did they have an armed escort or were they in convoy?
25 A. No.
1 Q. Why not?
2 A. That's a good question. Had we known what was going to happen
3 next, they would not have left without escort.
4 Q. Now, you said a moment ago that this was a daily collection or
5 supply of food for your units. What was the normal practice in sending
6 your members to collect food in Djakovica in relation to escorts and
8 A. Since these were daily activities involving a greater number of
9 journeys and a great many men plus the intention being not to draw the
10 attention of the KLA members to that -- to that particular travel, we
11 decided not to give the men who were supposed to do that particular task
12 any escort on their way to Djakovica and back.
13 Q. Did they make it to Djakovica?
14 A. Yes, they did make it to Djakovica. They reported to us over the
15 radio that they had picked up the food-supplies and that they were on
16 their way back to the unit.
17 Q. Did they make it to Babaloc?
18 A. Yes. We were in touch with them on their arrival in Babaloc
19 because they had -- had a problem. The vehicle they were using broke
20 down, and my deputy who was in command of the part of the unit in Babaloc,
21 we -- that's to say me and my deputy solved the problem by unloading the
22 food-supplies and loading them into a Mitsubishi van.
23 Q. Just to clarify your last answer, you say you solved the problem.
24 Who loaded or unloaded the food-supplies in the Mitsubishi van? Are you
25 saying you did it or someone else did it?
1 A. As they arrived in Babaloc, they delivered part of the
2 food-supplies to the unit stationed in Babaloc. Together with the
3 colleagues in Babaloc, they unloaded and reloaded the rest of the
4 food-supplies for the unit in Junik; that is to say, they did it with the
5 colleagues there.
6 Q. Now, what about this Mitsubishi van, whose van was it?
7 A. That was a vehicle belonging to the Ministry of the Interior and
8 it was issued to the Secretariat of the Interior in Sabac.
9 Q. Was it one you had brought with you from Sabac?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Were there any official markings on it to indicate it was a
12 Ministry of the Interior vehicle or what colour was it?
13 A. It was gold metallic or yellow metallic colour, and the only
14 police markings were the white M licence plates -- I apologise, not white
15 but blue.
16 Q. Do you now remember whether it had number plates or licence plates
17 on it on that day?
18 A. I cannot give you an answer because that vehicle was in Babaloc
19 and not in Junik with me.
20 Q. Who authorised them to use that vehicle to travel between Babaloc
21 and Junik?
22 A. I gave the consent after consultation with my deputy who was in
23 Babaloc. I approved for that vehicle to be used to travel to Junik.
24 Q. What's the distance, the approximate distance, between Babaloc and
25 Junik and how far should it have taken to drive between the two under
1 normal circumstances?
2 A. If my recollections are still right, I think it's just 6 to 7
3 kilometres away. Since it's an asphalt road it takes a maximum of ten
4 minutes to cover that distance.
5 Q. Did Mr. Popadic and Jovanovic make it back from Babaloc? Did they
6 ever arrive in Junik?
7 A. They didn't.
8 Q. How long did you wait for them after authorising the -- the use of
9 the Mitsubishi?
10 A. Since they radioed when they finished the loading and unloading
11 and when they were ready to start, we waited for some 30 minutes and then
12 we realised that something was wrong, that there was a problem. First we
13 thought that the vehicle broke down again or that they had an accident en
14 route and for that reason they did not arrive back on time. We tried to
15 establish radio contact with them, and that was not successful.
16 Q. Did you go looking for them?
17 A. Yes. After half an hour and after checking with our colleagues in
18 Babaloc, who confirmed that they had departed towards Junik, I sent out a
19 patrol consisting of two vehicles and we went from Junik to Babaloc. We
20 expected to come across them on that road; however, we didn't and we
21 didn't find any trace indicating that there had been an accident or a
22 problem with the vehicle.
23 Q. Was there a shop on the road between Babaloc and Junik?
24 A. On the road to Junik itself, there wasn't; however, after the
25 Rastavica intersection towards Decani, on the left side there was a
1 village shop.
2 Q. Did you stop there?
3 A. We went there as well, believing that they could have gone there
4 to buy something in the shop, but even that was unnecessary because they
5 had been travelling from Djakovica.
6 Q. Did you confine your searches to that main road or did you go off
7 it looking for them?
8 A. Other than travelling to that local shop, we didn't venture out
9 anymore. We went back to Junik, and I informed my superior command about
10 the event.
11 Q. Why didn't you go off the main road to look for them?
12 A. That's quite a large area, there are many roads there. It was
13 impossible to allow a policeman who was much younger and much less
14 experienced to venture off the route that was set out to them, let alone
15 to use some local roads. That's what we believed, that they were there in
16 the immediate vicinity.
17 Q. Why did you believe that?
18 A. Rade Popadic is an experienced policeman, a very responsible
19 person, and an officer who knows very well what is an order and what it
20 means to make a detour from the route that was given to them. The mere
21 fact that it takes ten minutes to travel between Babaloc and Junik was the
22 final order for him.
23 Q. When you said he's very experienced, was he born in 1956,
24 specifically the 15th of June, 1956?
25 A. He was older than me, and I think that he was born in 1956. I'm
1 not sure about the date.
2 Q. What other searches were made for Mr. Popadic and Mr. Jovanovic
3 after that when you went looking on the main road for them?
4 A. Upon my return to Junik I informed the superior command, and after
5 some two hours they dispatched a police helicopter. We tried to search
6 through the broader area of Junik and Babaloc. We inspected the roads
7 from Decani to Djakovica.
8 Q. Was that in a helicopter or in a vehicle?
9 A. In a helicopter.
10 Q. Why didn't you go in vehicles into that area?
11 A. It simply wasn't safe to enter that area without a strong unit and
12 without an organized manner of entry.
13 Q. How long did the search go on for?
14 A. Well, that entire afternoon, for a couple of hours until the dusk.
15 Q. What about the next day and the days after that?
16 A. On the following day we had another incident. At the same
17 location another colleague was attacked. That, in turn, meant that we
18 sped up an operation that comprised of special measures to sweep the
20 Q. Who was the colleague who was attacked, what was his name?
21 A. Miladin Novakovic.
22 Q. What was his -- what was his role?
23 A. Miladin Novakovic was a member of the Djakovica Secretariat of the
24 Interior, and he served as a squad commander of police in Junik.
25 Q. You said at the same location he was attacked. Which location are
1 you referring to?
2 A. Rastavica intersection, the intersection for Junik.
3 Q. What happened to him? How was he attacked?
4 A. In the morning hours, as he was travelling to Junik in his private
5 vehicle, it was a red Kadett, he was fired at, he was ambushed, and he was
6 wounded in the lower part of his body, his legs. He was fortunate enough
7 to be able to jump out of the car, start shooting himself, and get into a
8 canal, a ditch, that was by the road, from where he managed to get to
9 Junik and was helped there by the colleagues securing that village.
10 Q. How far was that from where they were based in Babaloc that this
11 am -- I'm sorry, this attack took place?
12 A. 500 to 600 metres.
13 Q. What were you told about who the attackers were?
14 A. Since they helped him in the Babaloc refugee settlement, they gave
15 him first aid there and then transferred him to the Djakovica hospital.
16 When they transported him there, he told them that he was fired at by the
17 KLA members from automatic weapons. I think he even said quite
18 specifically that they wore black uniforms, but I'm not quite sure about
20 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction: Three answers
21 previously, the location was not Junik, it was Babaloc, as in he managed
22 to get to Babaloc and was helped there by the colleagues.
23 MR. RE:
24 Q. Did you know someone called Srdjan Perovic?
25 A. Perovic, yes.
1 Q. Who was he?
2 A. Srdjan Perovic was an officer of the secretariat in Pec. He
3 completed land forces academy in Belgrade. I knew him personally, and in
4 the several meetings that we had, briefings, exchange of information in
5 Pec, we met there.
6 Q. Okay. What happened to him?
7 A. After my deployment in Junik and Babaloc, I was deployed to secure
8 the settlement in Decani. That was our stay in Crnibreg. That was
9 sometime in June, and on one of my visits to Pec we learned that Srdjan
10 Perovic, together with a couple of policemen, tried to complete an
11 official task in a village near Pec, at which time he was ambushed. The
12 colleagues who were with him were killed; and according to the information
13 that was given at the time, Srdjan Perovic was captured and later killed.
14 Q. What was your information about who did the ambushing?
15 A. That was the information given at official briefings. It was
16 based on intelligence and talks with colleagues who had sent Srdjan
17 Perovic out on a mission and were in radio contact with him until the
18 critical moment.
19 Q. Who was supposed to have been responsible for the ambush, based on
20 the information you just said?
21 A. Members of the KLA were responsible from the area of the village
22 of Lodza or whoever was there in that area at that time.
23 Q. All right. Let's just go back to Mr. Popadic and Jovanovic for a
24 moment. Were they ever seen again after leaving Babaloc for Junik on that
25 day in May 1998?
1 A. No, they were never seen again by anyone.
2 Q. And what about the vehicle, the Mitsubishi van, was that
4 A. After involving the helicopter in the search and after completing
5 an infantry -- police infantry search of the terrain in the broader Junik
6 and Rastavica region, we didn't manage to find the vehicle. After some
7 time, I'm not sure exactly how much time, the vehicle was located and
8 identified as a vehicle belonging to the secretariat in Sabac.
9 Q. Can you now remember where it was found?
10 A. I saw that vehicle subsequently, but I cannot remember at which
11 location exactly. I know it was in an area around Decani, between Decani
12 and Djakovica, a village there. I'm not sure exactly how it was called.
13 Q. You said you saw it. Where did you see it, in what
14 circumstances? I mean, how did you come to see it?
15 A. Upon receiving information that the vehicle had been found, first
16 I was told that the vehicle was found camouflaged in some bushes. They
17 tried to explain -- describe the environment to me. They said that there
18 was a creek, a stream, and that the vehicle was concealed by bushes or
19 branches. I wanted to see the vehicle. I went there. It had been
20 retrieved from that initial location, and based on its appearance, the
21 colour, and so on, I was able to see that that was the vehicle they drove
22 on that critical day. There were bullet traces on the car, the windows
23 were broken and there was some other damage as well.
24 Q. Just describe what you mean by bullet traces. What did you see?
25 A. There was damage indicating that fire was opened, that the car was
1 damaged by ammunition, by bullets.
2 Q. Was the vehicle recoverable, could it still be used?
3 A. The vehicle was not usable. It was in quite a poor condition.
4 Later on it was repaired, though, and is being used to this day.
5 MR. RE: Could the witness please be shown Exhibit P10, that's a
6 photo -- that's a map.
7 Q. I'm going to show you a map of the Junik-Babaloc area which will
8 come up on the screen in front of you, and I want you to draw several
9 things -- make several markings on it. The court usher will assist you
10 with the pen.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Usher, could you please assist the witness in the
12 use of the electronic pen.
13 MR. RE: I'm sorry, I think we've got the same problem with this
14 one in that it's extremely difficult to read unless it's --
15 JUDGE ORIE: Well, I don't know what you are --
16 MR. RE: I'm going to get him to mark three things, the area under
17 KLA control at the time, to hach that in.
18 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
19 MR. RE: Where the refugee settlement was in Babaloc and where it
20 was in Junik.
21 JUDGE ORIE: We have -- of course, for Babaloc we have detailed
22 information about that. We have seen a picture. We have Mr. Crosland
23 explaining that it was next to the road and closer to the road than to the
24 village Babaloc. Therefore, that seems to be covered. I don't remember
25 that we have similar information about the location in Junik. Please, you
1 know, Mr. Re, you can zoom in and zoom out, but once you start --
2 MR. RE: Yeah.
3 JUDGE ORIE: -- marking, then there's no further zooming in or
4 zooming out anymore.
5 MR. RE: Can you highlight this bit here. I can't read it. I
6 doubt whether the witness can read it. It's too small.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can see this well, but I don't
8 know what you want me to do.
9 MR. RE:
10 Q. I want you to mark in where the refugee settlement in Junik was --
11 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, but then it would be good to have Junik at least
12 on the map --
13 MR. RE: Yes.
14 JUDGE ORIE: -- because as I see at this moment. Could we move a
15 bit -- yes. Junik is just -- the problem with this map, Mr. Re - I don't
16 know whether it's a problem or not - is that Junik is only half -- or at
17 least the name is not -- it's the bottom left corner where the legenda
18 where I at least expect Junik to be.
19 MR. RE: I'll give him a hard copy and ask him to look at this and
20 mark what he sees on the hard copy on the screen. I think that might
21 assist, because he can see it. I can show him again --
22 JUDGE ORIE: Just I think -- could we work on the basis of what we
23 have now on the screen. Of course I do not know since not all of Junik is
24 on the map and since ...
25 MR. RE:
1 Q. Can you see where the refugee settlement is on that particular
2 map? You can see Junik where it says "nik," n-i-k, at the bottom and
3 there's a road going to Rastavica?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Can you mark it with an X.
6 A. You want me to mark where the refugee settlement was?
7 Q. Yes, with a large X.
8 A. [Marks].
9 Q. Can you make it bigger.
10 A. [Marks].
11 Q. All right. It's now a circle but that's fine. You mentioned
12 earlier there was an area you said was under KLA control -- you want to
13 say something?
14 A. You told me that I encircled it. I marked it exactly the way the
15 settlement looked. It was on both sides of the road to Junik.
16 Q. And there's a circle with an X inside. That's great. The area I
17 want you to mark is just -- if you could -- just look at me for a moment,
18 Mr. Repic, can you just hach, cross the area in.
19 A. I have a correction. We can see the factory here, it is quite
20 clear on the map. The map -- the factory was in the settlement, so if I
21 can make a correction. I made a mistake and I can -- in my marking.
22 Could I correct it.
23 MR. RE: [Previous translation continues]... can we just put --
24 and start again?
25 JUDGE ORIE: Another way of dealing with it is - we have not yet
1 assigned a number - to have this now again on the screen clean, forget
2 about the markings made until now and then restart the whole exercise.
3 Would that be a way of doing it? So forget about this one, not to be
4 marked, not to be tendered, just to have P10 again, zoom in again, and
5 then have the marking at the right place. Although we also have an
6 instrument for undoing. Now we have it clean again.
7 Mr. Repic, we have the same map now. If you do the marking again
8 at the right spot.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The map is topographically plotted
10 into, or rather, the factory is topographically plotted into the map.
11 It's in the centre of the refugee settlement.
12 MR. RE:
13 Q. Thank you. Now the next thing I want you to do is the area into
14 which the MUP and PJP would not go which you said was under KLA control, I
15 want you to hach it in, that was the area you said to the left of the
17 A. On the left side of the road when you observe it from which side?
18 Q. Where you said it was. I don't care whether it's left, right, or
19 centre, just the area that you said was under KLA control.
20 A. [Marks].
21 Q. All right. You've circled Rastavica, Prilep, Rznic, Glodjane, and
22 Dubrava. What about the roads in between those particular villages and
23 the areas in between those villages, did you consider them to be under KLA
24 control at the time as well?
25 A. Yes. I circled the villages themselves, the strongholds
1 themselves, whereas if we speak of the area they had under their control,
2 then it would cover all of this including Babaloc, save for the area where
3 the refugee settlement was, even Erecka Suka would come under the area
4 they controlled, and of course we can extend it further like this.
5 Q. And just so the record's clear, you've put a circle on the road
6 around -- the road leading to Babaloc, and that's the area which was not
7 under KLA control or a semicircle from the main road. Okay.
8 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Could that be -- Mr. Registrar, that would be
9 number ...?
10 THE REGISTRAR: P918, Your Honours.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Could you please verify with the witness
12 whether KLA control was only exercised on that side of the road or whether
13 on the other side of the road similar observations were made.
14 MR. RE:
15 Q. What about the other side of the road, were there areas under KLA
16 control there?
17 A. Yes. They were present in other villages, too, Junik, which I
18 said a moment ago was relatively peaceful and stable remained so until the
19 PJP action. Later on they showed their true colours and made it quite
20 clear that this too was a very strong KLA stronghold.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Emmerson.
22 MR. EMMERSON: Could the witness just clarify that last answer,
23 please. He had indicated that Junik remained relatively peaceful until
24 the PJP action.
25 JUDGE ORIE: Perhaps we could find a bit more details, Mr. Re,
1 about when that action took place and what it consisted of.
2 MR. RE:
3 Q. Mr. Repic, you heard what the Judge said. When -- what was this
4 PJP action and when did it occur?
5 A. Immediately after the after the attack on Miladin Novakovic. This
6 attack on him sped up an action by a local PJP which covered the area of
7 Junik and Rastavica through to Decani along the main road. The objective
8 was to have the police sweep the area, search the area.
9 Q. All right. I'm going to show you another document.
10 MR. RE: I'm going to show him 65 ter 1972 which is the police
11 investigation into the circumstances of the death of the -- or the
12 disappearance of his two colleagues. It will take too long in my estimate
13 to show it to him in e-court, so I can show him a paper copy and have him
14 identify it and it can be displayed while doing that.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Let's proceed in this way. At the same time, I take
16 it that it's being uploaded for us. You can give that to the witness,
17 Mr. Usher. I think Mr. Registrar needs more information.
18 MR. RE: 1972. English would be good.
19 JUDGE ORIE: If you want to put questions to the witness in
20 relation to that, perhaps it would be better to have it in the original
21 language. Of course the Judges can consult the English translation.
22 MR. RE: Of course.
23 Q. Mr. Repic, the document in your hand, is it the police
24 investigation of case 3/IV-070 relating to the investigation into the
25 disappearances of Mr. Jovanovic and Mr. Popadic? Is it?
1 A. The document I have before me has the format of a criminal report
2 and a case file the way it is produced in the MUP of Serbia. Of course I
3 haven't had time to peruse the contents.
4 Q. All right. I'll put it this way. You didn't take part in the
5 investigation yourself?
6 A. No.
7 Q. And you haven't seen this before arriving in The Hague?
8 A. No.
9 Q. But so far as you can tell, it appears to be an official
10 investigation into those deaths, based upon your experience of all those
11 years in the MUP?
12 A. Yes. This is the format of criminal reports as they are drafted
13 in Serbia.
14 Q. And if you go to the first page you will see the date of
15 disappearance is given as the 24th of May, 1998 --
16 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. --
17 MR. EMMERSON: Yes, I'm sorry, I think we dealt with the matter as
18 far as Mr. Re had indicated it in advance that he was going to deal with
19 it. I think beyond that --
20 MR. RE: I can ask him about the difference between the date here
21 and the date which he remembers, they're one day out, I mean nine years
23 JUDGE ORIE: I think as a matter of fact, was the witness quite
24 clear in -- yes. Now, Mr. Re, I think that -- is it just to establish
25 that there is a difference or which is the right one?
1 MR. RE: His memory is slightly different to what's recorded in
2 the official contemporaneously recorded --
3 JUDGE ORIE: What should the Chamber do with that?
4 MR. RE: The preferred date we will be submitting ultimately is
5 the 24th of May.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, but that's the substance of what happened. It
7 could well be that the witness is right. That's exactly I think the point
8 that -- but let's move on to your next question.
9 MR. RE: Our submission will be ultimately it doesn't matter
10 whether it's the 23rd or the 24th of May.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Okay, it doesn't matter that much that -- I think the
12 witness already said that to the extent his memory served him, he gave a
13 date, but it's very difficult after nine years to know that for sure,
14 isn't it, and it's not the only evidence we have on the event, is it. And
15 the Chamber is -- of course we'll -- at a certain moment we'll have to
16 assess what any difference in material we received -- what assessment to
17 be given to that. Please proceed.
18 MR. RE:
19 Q. Can you please just look through that and you'll see some
20 photographs of a van.
21 MR. RE: For the benefit of the screen there it's U0156110, 6111,
22 6112, 6113.
23 Q. I just want you to have a look at those photographs which show a
24 van and a car. What can you say about that van and that car?
25 A. Since these are black-and-white photographs which were presumably
1 taken at the very scene where the vehicle was recovered, but based on the
2 damage and the appearance of the car, I can confirm that this is the
3 vehicle that I subsequently had occasion to see.
4 MR. RE: Might that be marked for identification?
5 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Registrar.
6 THE REGISTRAR: As P919, Your Honours.
7 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you. Marked for identification only.
8 Mr. Re, do I understand that a car and a van -- a van is not a car
9 and is just a car -- is that well understood or -- it's not my native
10 language but --
11 MR. RE: A van --
12 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, I know, yes, both automobiles, but please
13 proceed and if there's -- if it's clear to everyone then it's clear to me
14 as well.
15 MR. RE: Okay.
16 Can 65 ter 1973 please be displayed.
17 [Prosecution counsel confer]
18 MR. RE:
19 Q. I just want to show you pages 0168 and 0169 and just to ask you
20 whether that is an official criminal charge issued by the MUP in Djakovica
21 on the 26th of May, 1998, signed by Radovan Zlatkovic to authorise an
22 investigation. But you won't find it in the documents you've got there,
23 it's on the screen; but if it assists, I can give you a hard copy if it's
25 A. Yes, this is the same KU number, 307/98, and the format is that of
1 a criminal report which has been filed before the district public
2 prosecutor in Pec.
3 MR. RE: Could that also be given a number.
4 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Registrar.
5 THE REGISTRAR: P920, Your Honours.
6 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, marked for identification only.
7 Please proceed.
8 MR. RE:
9 Q. And the final document I wish to show you for Exhibit -- sorry, 65
10 ter number 1971. I'm going so show you four documents.
11 MR. RE: I don't want them displayed because if I tender them
12 they'll be under seal. They've been given to us -- I don't want the names
13 of the people who have given the statements displayed at the moment. But
14 what I want you to do is just read the four dates of the four statements:
15 One is the 22nd of June, 1998; ERN U0169639 to 9641; the next one is 3rd
16 of September, 1998, U0169644 to 9647; the third one is the 15th of
17 September, 1998, U0169648 to 9652; and finally the 23rd of March, 1999,
18 U0169659 to 9663. They purport to be statements given to the state
19 security department, that's the Serbian DB, in Pec on those dates. What I
20 simply want to ask -- want you to tell the Trial Chamber is if these are
21 or appear to you to be official statements in official statement form of
22 the type you would encounter if given to a Ministry of the Interior organ
23 such as the Serbian state security in 1998.
24 MR. GUY-SMITH: I think this question goes a bit farther than
25 his --
1 JUDGE ORIE: Well, whether they have the appearance, that's -- I
2 take it -- well, I listened carefully. They -- if these are -- appear to
3 you the official statements in official statement form of the type you
4 would encounter if given to a Ministry of the Interior organ such as the
5 Serbian state security in 1998, it's quite a lengthy formulation, but I
6 take it that you would like the witness to tell us whether these documents
7 just on the basis of their appearance are similar to statements as used in
8 criminal investigations at the time. Is that --
9 MR. RE: Do they for all intents and purposes look the same as
10 other statements given to the MUP at that time.
11 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Whether they are forgeries or not is not a
12 matter but whether they look the same.
14 MR. EMMERSON: I'm just hoping that Mr. Re will then establish the
15 basis for that. I'm hoping Mr. Re will then establish the basis for
16 that. I'm looking at the statements as they appear, perhaps it's the type
17 face or the official stamp --
18 JUDGE ORIE: Or the format.
19 MR. RE: That's why the witness is here as, a long-standing MUP
21 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Perhaps you ask him why he recognises this as
22 the type of -- one problem of course is that -- do we have it on our
23 screen, let me just check --
24 MR. RE: If he says yes, I will certainly ask the follow-up
25 questions; if he says no then --
1 JUDGE ORIE: Let's proceed. Yes.
2 Do you recognise these documents as similar to those you're
3 familiar with as produced as statements; and if so, why?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. There are four records of
5 statements taken before me, and according to their form and contents they
6 are consistent with the type of statements taken in the Ministry of the
7 Interior of Serbia. The heading which states the person giving the
8 statement, his personal background and the time at which the statement was
9 taken and the body by which it was taken, whereupon the contents of the
10 statement itself follow. Finally, the statement is signed by the citizen
11 involved and the authorised official.
12 MR. RE: On that basis, could they be marked for identification.
13 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Registrar.
14 THE REGISTRAR: As P921, Your Honours.
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Could we have a look at the four documents as
17 Mr. Usher, could you ...
18 MR. RE: If they get ultimately admitted, I will -- we will simply
19 extract those four from the larger range, but they can be handed to the
20 Trial Chamber.
21 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Well, the witness is looking at something and
22 then I would like to have a look at it as well.
23 MR. RE: Of course.
24 JUDGE ORIE: That's what I'm used to.
25 Could they be given to the witness for a second again in this
1 order as I just gave it to you.
2 Defence counsel has an opportunity to look at it I take it because
3 it's in their system. Yes.
4 You said something you recognised this as, among other matters, on
5 the signature. Now, the one on top of the bundle I gave you that is pages
6 8 to -- up to and including 11 out of 27 pages, there seems to be not a
7 signature and also no signatures at the bottom of the page which we found
8 at all others. Could you explain that? We have an idea, but I would
9 rather ask you to explain what we found at the bottom of the page and what
10 we found at the last page instead of a signature.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] When I said that these were
12 statements, I was referring to their format. I wasn't focusing on all
13 four of the statements to see whether they were indeed signed. But there
14 is the form which I described a moment ago, the heading, the statement
15 itself. There is that much there. Now, as to why there is no signature,
16 I don't know. I do see a blob here, perhaps someone's finger-print.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, that's what came into our mind as well, but was
18 that usual if someone couldn't read or write that he would put a
19 finger-print on the place where others would sign? Was that a usual way
20 of ...
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. There is no other way to affix
22 a signature, other than by placing a finger-print. There has to be some
23 sort of trace.
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, and that is -- thank you for that answer.
25 Mr. Usher, could you please retrieve the documents again from the
2 [Trial Chamber confers]
3 MR. RE: I've finished, Your Honours. That's my
5 JUDGE ORIE: That's -- okay. Then let me just see whether -- I'm
6 just verifying whether we already -- whether a number was already assigned
7 to the four statements.
8 MR. RE: 921.
9 JUDGE ORIE: 921. That's the four as a bundle together?
10 MR. RE: Yes.
11 JUDGE ORIE: I add to that that the four statements apparently are
12 parts of a bigger document because the numbering at the bottom which
13 indicates that there might have been 27 pages, this does not cover all 27
14 pages, there are interruptions.
15 MR. RE: Before you --
16 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
17 MR. RE: The inquiries of Professor Lecomte have revealed that she
18 is not available this week because she is testifying in court in Paris.
19 She is checking her schedule for early October and will get back to us --
20 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
21 MR. RE: -- tonight or tomorrow.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. We will further consider that matter.
23 [Trial Chamber confers]
24 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
25 Then we'll have a break. Mr. Re has finished his
1 examination-in-chief; that means that after the break you will be
2 cross-examined by Defence counsel, Mr. Repic.
3 We'll have a break until 20 minutes past 6.00.
4 --- Recess taken at 5.59 p.m.
5 --- On resuming at 6.33 p.m.
6 JUDGE ORIE: The Chamber apologises for returning late.
7 Mr. Emmerson, the Chamber would need five minutes at the end of
8 this session for the other matter which is still pending.
9 Mr. Repic, you'll now be cross-examined by Mr. Emmerson, who is
10 counsel for Mr. Haradinaj.
11 Mr. Emmerson, please proceed.
12 Cross-examination by Mr. Emmerson:
13 Q. Mr. Repic, I wonder if you can help me first of all with the
14 titles of the companies of PJP that were deployed in western Kosovo during
15 the period that you were there. First of all, can you help us, the 24th
16 Detachment or 24th Battalion, where was that based?
17 A. I'm not aware of that. I do not belong to that establishment, and
18 that is at a level above a level of a company, to which I belonged.
19 Q. Yes, I understand that. But each company has a number, is that
20 right, 3rd Company, 4th Company, 7th Company, and so on?
21 A. Within a detachment there are companies from 1 to 5, and as for
22 24th Detachment, that means nothing to me.
23 Q. Can you help us about this. What was the number of your company?
24 A. 2nd Company.
25 Q. Thank you. And can you give us the designation of the detachment
1 or battalion to which your company was attached?
2 A. The 31st -- the 35th Detachment.
3 Q. Thank you. Now, just one or two general questions, if I may, to
4 start with. You mentioned weaponry and the differences between weapons
5 used by the PJP and other constituent forces, and you mentioned
6 anti-aircraft machine-guns being one of the weapons that were used by the
7 PJP; is that right?
8 A. Yes, I mentioned that, that is integral part of the weapons of
9 armoured combat vehicles.
10 Q. Would the PJP have been armed then with howitzers?
11 A. No.
12 Q. Can you give us, please, the name of the weapons that the PJP used
13 as anti-aircraft machine-guns?
14 A. I am aware of two types, the Russian DSK and the Browning.
15 Q. And can I just ask you briefly about ammunition. Did the PJP use
16 Chinese ammunition?
17 A. No.
18 Q. Now, you've told us that you arrived in Kosovo in March of 1998
19 and you first were transferred to Junik in the second half of May. Can I
20 ask you, please, first of all, do you remember when in March it was you
21 arrived, at the beginning or at the end of March or somewhere in between?
22 A. I will not be able to give you an exact date. I was there during
23 March, but I don't remember more than that.
24 Q. All right. I'll come back to that if I may. And your last tour
25 of duty there was June 1999; is that correct?
1 A. Correct.
2 Q. I want to ask you, please, first of all about joint operations
3 between - and this is not specifically your company, but PJP companies
4 more generally as far as you are aware - joint operations between the PJP
5 and other specialist anti-terrorist forces. First of all, is it right
6 that the PJP used often to work in joint operations with the JSO?
7 A. They did have joint operations, but not frequently.
8 Q. And would there be occasions when PJP units would be subordinated
9 to the JSO?
10 A. I don't know of a single case where there was resubordination to
11 the officers of the JSO.
12 Q. Do you exclude the possibility that that could have happened or
13 are you simply telling us you don't know one way or the other?
14 A. Given that these are two different formations, I can even say that
15 that possibility is excluded.
16 Q. Can I ask you to be shown the red binder. There's one or two
17 documents I want you to help us with if you could, please. I wonder if
18 you could start by just turning behind tab 1. You may need the usher's
19 assistance in this. Behind tab 1 in the file you will find first in
20 Serbian and then there is an English translation of a report dated the
21 24th of June, 1998, signed by the gentleman whose name you mentioned
22 earlier, Srdjan Perovic. Do you have that?
23 A. [No interpretation].
24 Q. Does that document indicate that in June, or rather, from the 29th
25 of May to the 20th of June three platoons of the 3rd Company of the 24th
1 Detachment of the special police unit were directly subordinated to the
3 A. Yes, that's what it says there.
4 Q. And when it's there referring to the special police unit, could
5 that be anything other than the PJP? Could it be a different
7 A. I don't know. It says that the 3rd Company of the 24th Detachment
8 was resubordinated to the JSO. I cannot comment upon this. I don't know
9 who drafted this or how.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Emmerson, in -- when you said could it be
11 anything else other than the PJP, I noticed that in the translation the
12 abbreviation is not followed --
13 MR. EMMERSON: Exactly. That's why I asked --
14 JUDGE ORIE: -- but in the original of course we see "PJP." The
15 question would then be: Are there -- is there more than one PJP. Yes,
16 please proceed.
17 MR. EMMERSON:
18 Q. Looking at that document and assuming it to be genuine, do you now
19 accept that the answer you've given us a moment ago that it's not possible
20 that there could be resubordination because there are two different
21 formulations or formations, do you agree that that's an answer that needs
22 to be reconsidered?
23 A. Based on my personal experience I know that officers of the JSO
24 never commanded the officers of the PJP. Given what is stated in this
25 document, yes, there is a possibility that there were such cases.
1 Q. We've heard testimony in this court from Colonel John Crosland,
2 the British military attache to Belgrade, who - and I'm referring here for
3 the record to transcript 3095, line 13, although there are other
4 references - who describes an incident at the end of July when he came
5 across a joint PJP and JSO strike force preparing to launch an attack near
6 Malisevo with the operation as a whole being commanded by a man who used
7 the name Legija. You presumably know who Legija is, do you?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Just for the record, that is Milorad Ulemek, is it not?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. So again I'm suggesting to you that the testimony we have heard in
12 this court is that on another occasion, too, the PJP forces were being put
13 at the disposal of the JSO.
14 A. I have to repeat my answer. Based on my personal experience I can
15 say that I have never participated in any operation where we were
16 resubordinated to the officers of the JSO.
17 Q. And you'll bear in mind in answering my questions that I'm not
18 solely asking about your company but about your knowledge of the
19 operations of the PJP more generally in Kosovo, please. So if you know
20 anything about the operation of the PJP beyond your own company, please
21 bear in mind that I'm asking you questions more broadly.
22 The Brazil Group was a constituent part of the JSO, was it not?
23 A. I have never heard of this group.
24 Q. Could I ask you, please, just to turn behind tab 2 in this
25 bundle --
1 JUDGE ORIE: Before we continue, is it your intention to tender
2 what we find under tab 1?
3 MR. EMMERSON: I should certainly refer to it on the record, Your
4 Honour, and ask for it to be at least marked for identification at this
5 stage and that is --
6 JUDGE ORIE: Then it needs a number.
7 MR. EMMERSON: Defence document 1D6D0001.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will be marked for
9 identification as D162.
10 JUDGE ORIE: Thank you, Mr. Registrar.
11 Please proceed, Mr. Emmerson.
12 MR. EMMERSON:
13 Q. Tab 2 is a report signed by Colonel Dragan Zivanovic, commander of
14 the 125th Motorised Brigade of the VJ which was based in Pec, I think you
15 can confirm; is that right?
16 A. As far as I am aware, this unit was based in Kosovska Mitrovica,
17 but I do not exclude a possibility that I'm mistaken. This is an army
19 Q. Thank you. And tab 2 is 65 ter number 1945.
20 I just want to ask you, please, if you could just cast your eye
21 down the entries that appear under number 1, and there are a series of
22 bullet points there describing joint operations beginning on the 25th of
23 July and running through to the 6th of August just between the figure 1
24 and the figure 1.2. Can you in summary, please, confirm for us that that
25 is a description of a series of joint operations along certain designated
1 axes involving a joint force of VJ, PJP, and what is described as the
2 Brazil Group?
3 A. I see this document for the first time and superficially glancing
4 at it, I don't know how I can comment upon this, whether this is a report,
5 whether they participated in it, I don't know.
6 Q. It is a report. It is produced by Colonel Zivanovic, and it is
7 describing a series of engagements, as you can see from the opening words,
8 and what I'm putting to you - and to some extent it may be plain from the
9 words themselves - but what I'm putting to you is that this is describing
10 a series of joint operations in which the PJP were working alongside the
11 Brazil Group and a series of combat groups of the VJ. Would you agree
12 with that?
13 A. Again, I have never heard of a group called Brazil. That's why I
14 can't tell you whether this is true or not. You're asking me something I
15 don't know.
16 Q. Very well.
17 JUDGE ORIE: Mr. Emmerson, perhaps the date of the document and
18 the earlier answers makes it not very logical to ask further questions to
19 the witness, of course, until something suddenly would come into his mind
20 but that's not what I reasonably could expect at this moment to happen.
21 MR. EMMERSON: Could I just, if I may, ask one or two generic
22 questions about the document.
23 Q. If you could look, please, at the last bullet point under 1.2
24 which on the Serbian text is on the first page six lines up from the
25 bottom. In the English translation it reads as follows: "On the
1 remaining axes, Brazil Group (106 men) carried out deep wedging and
2 burning operations on all axes, while the 4th PJP Detachment secured
3 points on the lines achieved."
4 I wonder if you could help us, please, do you know what that
5 expression "deep wedging and burning operations" means?
6 A. With all due respect to Mr. Zivanovic, this is the first time that
7 I hear the term "burning" or "progorevande" in the original. I know what
8 wedging is, but I have never heard of the other term and I don't know what
9 it means.
10 Q. You see, as a general proposition, Mr. Repic, we have heard
11 testimony in this court that the PJP along with the JSO and the SAJ were
12 used as ground troops to enter villages under cover of VJ shell fire,
13 where they would then burn houses, shoot livestock, burn haystacks, and
14 destroy the infrastructure to make it impossible for civilians to remain.
15 Now, can I ask you this, please: Were you ever aware of the PJP -- never
16 mind your unit but other units of the PJP engaging in those kind of
17 burning operations while you were in Kosovo?
18 A. I'm not aware of that.
19 Q. Presumably you've heard those allegations made since the time you
20 were in Kosovo, have you not?
21 A. I haven't heard of such a description of events. This is a crime
22 and I cannot comment upon this.
23 Q. When you first arrived in Kosovo you were based in Srbica; is that
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Can you give us some idea of the geographical proximity between
2 Srbica and the villages of Prekaze and Likoshan?
3 A. Srbica as an administrative centre is located some 2 kilometres, 1
4 to 2 kilometres from the village of Prekaze; and as for the distance to
5 Likosane, I don't know exactly.
6 Q. Somehow perhaps you could help us to date your arrival a little
7 bit more specifically. Presumably you were aware of what took place in
8 Prekaze on the 5th of March?
9 A. My arrival followed that event. It was five to seven, up to ten
10 days later.
11 Q. Thank you. So that helps us date your arrival around the middle
12 of March; is that right -- well, I claim it is right. When you arrived
13 was there already a PJP detachment in Srbica?
14 A. Yes, there was a PJP detachment in Srbica and we came to relieve
16 Q. And presumably in the handover that took place you had discussions
17 with them as to what operations they had been involved with?
18 A. I don't remember that we had such discussions; however,
19 subsequently through intelligence briefing we learned about some details
20 concerning our execution of the task during the time we were there.
21 MR. EMMERSON: I see the time.
22 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, Mr. Emmerson.
23 MR. EMMERSON: I just have one final question, if I may --
24 JUDGE ORIE: Okay, yes.
25 MR. EMMERSON: -- which I think with be a short answer.
1 JUDGE ORIE: If you keep it short.
2 MR. EMMERSON:
3 Q. Were the PJP involved in the operations at Likoshan and Prekaze,
4 as far as you know?
5 A. I don't know which period of time you're referring to. I really
6 don't know. I don't know if they participated.
7 Q. I'm talking about the attack on the Jashari compound on the 5th of
8 March, ten days before you arrived and relieved the PJP contingent that
9 was there. Were they involved in the operation at Prekaze on the 5th of
11 A. If I understood you well you asked me something about Likosane and
12 now you're asking me again about Prekaz. Another matter is this: You
13 want me to tell you about the activities of a unit to which I do not
14 belong. All I can do is suppose that they had a certain role, a certain
15 task in that operation, but I cannot confirm this.
16 Q. Very well.
17 MR. EMMERSON: Would that be a convenient moment?
18 JUDGE ORIE: Yes, at the same time, Mr. Repic, you just said I
19 can't say anything else then what their task may have been. Sometimes you
20 hear things from others, which is -- could be relevant as well. So
21 therefore, if you were asked whether they were involved you are expected
22 to at least tell us what you personally observed or experienced but also
23 if you arrived ten days later and you heard other PJP members telling
24 about what happened ten days ago, then you're supposed to - you're under a
25 duty - to inform the Chamber about that as well.
1 So therefore, if you have any personal knowledge, tell us; if you
2 heard something, although it's not your personal observation, you
3 nevertheless should give it as part of the answer. But you could of
4 course say that you don't know whether it's true or not, but this is what
5 A, B, or C told you, yes, or what you read in a document or whatever.
6 Whatever your source of knowledge is, be clear on that and give us as
7 complete information as possible.
8 Mr. Repic, we'll finish for the day as far as you're concerned.
9 We'd like to see you back tomorrow quarter past 2.00 in this same
10 courtroom, but I instruct you that you should not speak with anyone about
11 the testimony you have given today and you're still about to give
12 tomorrow. Then I'd like the usher to escort the witness out of the
13 courtroom. We'd like to see you back tomorrow.
14 MR. RE: Your Honour, while the witness is leaving --
15 JUDGE ORIE: Yes.
16 MR. RE: -- just a tiny matter. Exhibit MFI P921, could I ask
17 that that be kept under seal for the moment, that's the four DB
18 statements. There are names in those statements which I don't think
19 should be public at the moment.
20 [The witness stands down]
21 JUDGE ORIE: Yes. Was that not yet indicated -- but at least they
22 are under seal for the time being.
23 The other matter is the testimony of Mr. Dourel. As I said
24 earlier, the Chamber would prefer to have -- to receive all the evidence
25 in relation to what the experts, Aleksandric, Dunjic, Dourel, and Lecomte
1 gave their expertise. At the same time, the Chamber finds under the
2 present circumstances no reason at this moment not to start hearing the
3 evidence by Mr. Dourel. At the same time, the Chamber would like to make
4 sure that the expert Lecomte receives a copy in whatever form, preferably
5 in her own language, of the testimony of Dourel so that we don't have to
6 repeat everything.
7 Now, the witness Lecomte has not yet been called, has not given
8 any evidence, so therefore, Mr. Re, would it be possible for you to
9 provide, either in audio/visual form or by getting hold of the French
10 transcript, as you may be aware of is produced in a relatively short time,
11 and to provide that to witness Lecomte so that she can prepare herself for
12 the testimony. At the same time, I think the Chamber has specifically
13 invited Professor Aleksandric to comment on the Lecomte report. If that
14 information, but that should be done through the Victims and Witnesses
15 Section, if that written comment would be available, the Chamber would
16 like to receive that as quickly as possible so that it is available
17 already when the expert Lecomte testifies.
18 MR. RE: I understand that Professor Aleksandric I think was on
19 holidays and was returning I think today and the report will be available
20 this week or the beginning of next week, that's my understanding.
21 JUDGE ORIE: I don't have the details as far as timing in my
22 mind. I remember that we also invited the expert Dunjic that if he
23 wanted -- I think he has been provided with the report, but we did not
24 specifically ask him to give any comments. But if the Victims and Witness
25 Section would verify with Professor Aleksandric whether he has already any
1 comments put on paper and to provide them as soon as possible so that we
2 have a full picture of this type of evidence.
3 Then finally, Mr. Re, is our understanding correct that apart from
4 the expert Dourel that we have no further witnesses for this week?
5 MR. RE: Unless something happens tomorrow, we are attempting to
7 JUDGE ORIE: Please keep the Chamber updated as good as you can in
8 relation to any developments. Then we'll adjourn for the day. We'll
9 resume tomorrow, quarter past 2.00, same courtroom.
10 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 7.04 p.m.,
11 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 18th day of
12 September, 2007, at 2.15 p.m.