Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 1877

 1                           Monday, 21 November 2011

 2                           [Open session]

 3                           [The accused entered court]

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

 5             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Good morning to everybody in and around the

 6     courtroom.

 7             Madam Registrar, will you please call the case.

 8             THE REGISTRAR:  Good morning, Your Honours.  This is case number

 9     IT-04-84bis-T, the Prosecutor versus Ramush Haradinaj, Idriz Balaj, and

10     Lahi Brahimaj.

11             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you so much.

12             Could we have appearances, please, for the day, starting with the

13     Prosecution.

14             MS. KRAVETZ:  Good morning, Your Honours.  For the Prosecution,

15     Daniela Kravetz with my colleague Aditya Menon; our legal intern,

16     Andrej Micovic; and our case manager, Line Pedersen.  Thank you.

17             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you so much, ma'am.

18             For the Defence of Mr. Haradinaj.

19             MR. EMMERSON:  Good morning, Your Honour.  Ben Emmerson for

20     Ramush Haradinaj, together with Rod Dixon, Annie O'Reilly, and

21     Andrew Strong.

22             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you very much, Mr. Emmerson.

23             And for Mr. Balaj.

24             MR. GUY-SMITH:  Good morning, Your Honours.  Gregor Guy-Smith on

25     behalf of Idriz Balaj, together with Colleen Rohan, Chad Mair, and


Page 1878

 1     Gentian Zyberi.

 2             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you very much, Mr. Guy-Smith.

 3             And then for Mr. Brahimaj.

 4             MR. HARVEY:  Good morning.  Good morning, Your Honours.

 5     Richard Harvey for Mr. Brahimaj, assisted by Mr. Paul Troop and

 6     Mr. Luke Boenisch.

 7             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you very much, Mr. Harvey.

 8             May the Chamber please move into closed session.

 9                           [Closed session]

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25                           [Open session]


Page 1879

 1             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, we're back in open session.

 2             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you so much.

 3             Yes, Madam Kravetz.

 4             MS. KRAVETZ:  Thank you, Your Honour.

 5                           WITNESS:  81

 6                           [Witness answered through interpreter]

 7                           Examination by Ms. Kravetz:

 8        Q.   Good morning, sir.  Can you hear me in a language you understand?

 9        A.   Yes.

10        Q.   You're getting interpretation in the Serbian language?

11        A.   Yes.

12             MS. KRAVETZ:  With the leave of the Court, I would like for the

13     witness to be shown the pseudonym sheet, if the usher could kindly assist

14     and hand it over to the witness.

15             JUDGE MOLOTO:  You've got the leave, ma'am.

16             MS. KRAVETZ:

17        Q.   Sir, I would like you to read the information that's in this

18     paper that's going to be handed over to you and simply -- don't read it

19     out loud.  Read it to yourself and simply -- are you not getting

20     interpretation or ...?

21        A.   I am receiving interpretation now.

22        Q.   Is it not loud enough?  Can you not hear it?

23        A.   It is all right now.

24        Q.   So, sir, I was just explaining, don't read that out loud, read it

25     to yourself, and I just would like for you to confirm whether the


Page 1880

 1     information in that document is correct or not.

 2        A.   It is correct.

 3        Q.   Thank you.

 4             MS. KRAVETZ:  Your Honours, I seek to tender the pseudonym sheet,

 5     the 65 ter 03121, and I tender that under seal.

 6             JUDGE MOLOTO:  It's admitted into evidence.  May it please be

 7     given an exhibit number and may it please be shown also to the Bench.

 8             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, that will be Exhibit P408, under

 9     seal.

10             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you.

11             MR. GUY-SMITH:  And if I could, Your Honour, if I could just see

12     it for one quick second again, please.

13             JUDGE MOLOTO:  If you could what?

14             MR. GUY-SMITH:  Just see it for one quick second again, please.

15             JUDGE MOLOTO:  By all means, Mr. Guy-Smith.

16             MR. GUY-SMITH:  Thank you so much.

17             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you.

18             MS. KRAVETZ:  Your Honour, I would like to briefly move into

19     private session just to ask some initial questions of the witness and --

20             JUDGE MOLOTO:  May the Chamber please move into private session.

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11 Page 1881 redacted. Private session.















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14                           [Open session]

15             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, we're back in open session.

16             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you so much, Madam Registrar.

17             Yes, Madam Kravetz.

18             MS. KRAVETZ:

19        Q.   Sir, were you ever in the village of Jabllanice in Gjakove

20     municipality in 1998?

21        A.   On several occasions.  To be more precise, if I recall correctly,

22     on four occasions.

23        Q.   Okay.  Let's talk about the first occasion that you visited.  Do

24     you recall when that was, the first time you went to Jabllanice village?

25        A.   To the best of my recollection, it happened several weeks or


Page 1883

 1     perhaps a month after I joined the KLA, that was the first time.

 2        Q.   Can you help us with the month, approximately when do you recall

 3     this -- this visit taking place?

 4        A.   Sometime in April or May.

 5        Q.   Did you travel there alone or did you travel there with others?

 6        A.   I didn't travel on my own because that was the first time I was

 7     in Kosovo and that was the first time in my life that I was there.  I

 8     wasn't familiar with the villages, and of course, there were other

 9     soldiers travelling with me.  Because I had no knowledge of Kosovo.

10        Q.   Just to clarify, you say there were other soldiers travelling

11     with you.  Approximately how big was the group that was travelling with

12     you?  How many people are we talking about?

13        A.   Six of them.

14        Q.   And how did you travel there, to the village of Jabllanice?

15        A.   At the time I was in the village of Trstenik, near Drenica.  We

16     went from there on foot.  There were a lot of soldiers, Serbian soldiers

17     around, tanks, et cetera, so we had to go on foot from one village to the

18     next.  And that was how we arrived there.

19        Q.   And do you recall approximately how long this trip took from the

20     village where you were based to the village of Jabllanice?

21        A.   It took a long time, some nine to ten hours roughly.

22        Q.   At what time of the day did you travel there?

23        A.   As I told you previously, we weren't able to travel during the

24     day because there was a large Serbian military presence with tanks there

25     and one couldn't move freely around.  So we only set off in the evening

Page 1884

 1     hours.

 2        Q.   You told us that you weren't familiar with Kosovo and that you

 3     travelled with other soldiers.  Who showed you the way from the village

 4     of Trstenik to Jabllanice?

 5        A.   A local soldier who was familiar with the area.

 6        Q.   And why did you make this trip from Trstenik to Jabllanice

 7     village?

 8        A.   Because I was ordered to do so.

 9        Q.   Without mentioning any names, can you tell us who ordered you to

10     do so?

11        A.   My superior, under whose command I was.

12        Q.   Are you able to tell the Judges what sort of orders you received

13     from your superior in relation to this trip?  Did he explain why it is

14     that you had to go there?

15        A.   We were told that we were supposed to help out those in

16     Jabllanice, that there were only a handful of them, and that they needed

17     our assistance.  That was the reason why we set off.

18        Q.   When you arrived in the village of Jabllanice, was there anyone

19     there waiting for you?

20        A.   Yes, there was.

21             MR. EMMERSON:  Your Honour, I wonder if we could move into --

22             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Yes.

23             MR. EMMERSON:  I'm sorry to interrupt.  I wonder if we could move

24     into private session briefly.

25             JUDGE MOLOTO:  May the Chamber please move into private session.


Page 1885

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25                           [Open session]


Page 1894

 1             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, we're back in open session.

 2             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you.

 3             You may proceed, Madam Kravetz.

 4             MS. KRAVETZ:  Thank you, Your Honour.

 5        Q.   Sir, I was asking you about the moment you arrived in the village

 6     of Jabllanice, and I asked you whether there was anyone waiting for you,

 7     and you said, yes, there was.  Could you tell us who was there waiting

 8     for you and the group you were travelling with.

 9        A.   Idriz Gashi.

10        Q.   Was this person on his own or was he with anyone else?

11        A.   There was another villager, a soldier, from that village, but I

12     cannot remember his name and I don't think I asked him either.

13        Q.   And once you met these two individuals when you arrived in

14     Jabllanice, did you introduce yourself?  Did the persons -- you and the

15     persons you were travelling with, did you introduce yourself to them?

16             MR. GUY-SMITH:  I would ask at this time, since it is seemingly a

17     non-leading question, but I would ask at this time that Ms. Kravetz

18     confine herself to more general manner of questioning so that she does

19     not in any fashion whatsoever suggest any conceivable answer to the

20     witness.  She can ask what he did, or when he did it, or where he was,

21     and how things happened --

22             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Mr. Guy-Smith.

23             Start again.  Mr. Guy-Smith.

24             MS. KRAVETZ:  I -- Your Honour -- I was --

25             MR. GUY-SMITH:  Excuse me, Ms. Kravetz, I was asked to start

Page 1895

 1     again.

 2             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Just take a seat, Madam Kravetz.

 3             MR. GUY-SMITH:  I would ask that Ms. Kravetz not ask leading

 4     questions.  She can ask who, what, when, or how questions, but not ask

 5     questions that in any fashion suggest answers.  And the reason I'm asking

 6     that is because of what we have just seen with regard to the manner in

 7     which this particular witness answers questions.  When you got there,

 8     what did you do, who did you meet, what happened next?

 9             JUDGE MOLOTO:  You've got an objection there being raised against

10     you, Madam Kravetz.  Any response to that objection?

11             MS. KRAVETZ:  I can simply rephrase the question, Your Honour,

12     there's no problem with that.

13             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Do, ma'am.

14             MS. KRAVETZ:

15        Q.   Sir, you've told us you met these two individuals when you

16     arrived.  What happened after you met these two persons in Jabllanice?

17        A.   We went to a house.  It was a one-storey house.  It had bare

18     walls.  We went there.  I didn't know what it was at the time.

19        Q.   Do you recall when -- where in the village this house was

20     located?

21        A.   I recall.  It was by the road.  When you go from the mosque it's

22     on the right-hand side, a small house.  There were no windows on the

23     front facade.  It was an abandoned house.

24        Q.   And what happened when you got to that house?

25        A.   It was in the morning hours when we got there.  The first two

Page 1896

 1     rooms didn't have any windows and the following room to the left was the

 2     one where we were received and we were told to rest there.

 3        Q.   And do you know why you were taken to that house?

 4        A.   It's -- or rather, when you go to an unknown place and you're

 5     taken to a house, then you don't ask yourself too many questions.  You

 6     just follow.  So at the time I didn't know what it was about.

 7        Q.   And you've told us you rested there.  What happened after you

 8     rested in that room?

 9        A.   On the following day, I don't know at what hour but it was in the

10     morning, a gentleman arrived and I didn't know who he was at the time.

11     He introduced himself as Maxhup.

12        Q.   Did you later -- I'm sorry.  Did you later learn the name of this

13     person who introduced himself as Maxhup?

14        A.   Yes, I did.

15        Q.   Can you tell us the name?

16        A.   Lahi Brahimaj.

17        Q.   And when is it that you learned that this person called Maxhup

18     was Lahi Brahimaj?

19        A.   Later, when I went there for the second time.

20        Q.   Sir, you've told us you were taken to a house and specifically to

21     a room.  Was this the only house on the property where you were taken to?

22        A.   As far as I remember, it was not the only house.  There was a

23     pine tree next to the entrance to the house and there was a wooden gate

24     on the left, if I'm not mistaken, and there was another house there near

25     this one.  Again, I say as far as I remember because it's been a number

Page 1897

 1     of years.

 2        Q.   Did you have to go through this wooden gate to get to the house

 3     where you rested?

 4        A.   Yes.

 5        Q.   And was there anyone else on this property, other than the two

 6     persons you have referred to who greeted you and took your group to this

 7     house, was there anyone else there when you arrived?

 8        A.   There were two or three villagers, they were dressed like local

 9     soldiers.

10        Q.   You told us that a person called Maxhup arrived and introduced

11     himself.  What happened after you met this person, Maxhup?

12        A.   Nothing special.  We said hello, as was the custom.  And on the

13     right there was a room where there was a table and we entered it and we

14     said why we had come and who had sent us.

15        Q.   You told us that you had gone there on instructions of your

16     commander.  Did you explain to this person, Maxhup, or Lahi Brahimaj,

17     what your instructions were, what instructions you had received from your

18     commander?

19        A.   I explained, but he knew why I was there.

20        Q.   What did you tell him?

21        A.   That my commander had sent us as assistants, but he was aware of

22     our arrival and he received us nicely.

23        Q.   Where did this meeting with Maxhup take place, this initial

24     introduction with Maxhup?

25        A.   In the house to which we were taken.

Page 1898

 1        Q.   And after you met Maxhup and told him about the instructions you

 2     had, what did you do?

 3        A.   We entered, as I explained, and on the right there was another

 4     room.  We went there and we started to talk.

 5        Q.   When you say "we entered and we started to talk," who are you

 6     referring to?

 7        A.   Me, Maxhup, and one of my comrades who was with me and one of

 8     them -- that is, two of them in all.

 9        Q.   And what did you discuss, what did you talk about with Maxhup?

10        A.   We spoke about us supposed to go somewhere as assistants, that

11     is, to provide escort and we were talking about what we were to do and

12     how we were to go about it and who would show us the way.

13        Q.   After that conversation ended, what happened?

14        A.   After the conversation, he showed us a basement with a couple of

15     people in it.  And when I say that, they may have been seven or six

16     possibly.  I cannot recall precisely, but that was the approximate

17     number.  They were tied.  They weren't of our ethnicity.  They weren't

18     Albanians.  And we went to see them.

19        Q.   Okay.  I want to clarify that answer, sir.  First of all, you

20     said he showed you a basement.  Where was this basement located?

21        A.   It was the basement of the house in which we were, the house had

22     a basement.

23        Q.   Could you describe that basement for the Judges?

24        A.   Yes, I can.  You go down the stairs.  There's a -- and you come

25     to a room, and it was very humid.  There was a layer of 20 to

Page 1899

 1     30 centimetres and a small window.

 2        Q.   When you say "there was a layer of 20 to 30 centimetres" of what

 3     exactly?  We didn't get that.

 4        A.   There was water, water and mud.

 5        Q.   You said you saw six or possibly seven people there and they were

 6     tied.  Could you describe these people that you saw there?

 7        A.   Yes.  Two young Roma or gypsies, one Serb, and I don't know about

 8     the religion of the older folks but I could tell that two of them were

 9     gypsies.

10        Q.   So you told us there were two young Roma and one Serb and what

11     about the others?  Could you describe the others?

12        A.   They were elderly people.  I really don't know what their

13     religious affiliation was, I didn't ask them, nor could I have because

14     I -- because of my capacity there.  I -- but I could tell by the faces of

15     the two that they were gypsies and these others spoke Serbian, but I

16     didn't ask the others, I didn't have the right to do so.  I was only

17     there to help out.  It wasn't for me to ask questions.

18        Q.   Were there any women in this group of people that you saw in the

19     basement or were these all men?

20        A.   There were women as well, two women.

21        Q.   When you say there were women as well, two women, do you mean

22     within this group of six or seven people or are you talking about

23     additionally there were two women there?  Just so we're clear on the

24     number of people.

25        A.   No, no.  The two women were part of that group, that is, two

Page 1900

 1     gypsies, one Serb, two women, and then maybe another old man or two old

 2     men.  But I think that there were two.

 3        Q.   And when you say there were old men, can you tell us

 4     approximately how old these men were that you saw there, just

 5     approximately?

 6        A.   Well, they may have been 45 to 50 years of age at the time.

 7        Q.   What about the two women who were there?

 8        A.   Same thing roughly.

 9        Q.   Could you help us with the condition that these persons you saw

10     in the basement were in when you saw them?  I'm speaking physical

11     condition they were in.

12        A.   Well, they weren't in the best condition.  They had bruises,

13     their legs were tied, it was dirty.

14        Q.   You said there was water in the basement.  Were these persons in

15     the water, standing in the water, or did you see them somewhere else in

16     the basement?

17        A.   No.  I saw them there, where the water was.

18        Q.   Did you ask Maxhup why these persons were there in the basement?

19        A.   I couldn't ask Maxhup because Maxhup was the host.  I was a new

20     arrival and I had no right to ask him why, but he explained me that they

21     were of a different religion, that two of them were gypsies, that there

22     was one Serb; in a word, that they weren't Albanians.

23        Q.   You have referred to the elderly men and the women as well and

24     you also told us that there was one Serb.  Do you recall approximately

25     how old this Serb individual or man that you saw there was?

Page 1901

 1             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Hasn't he already given that answer?  Didn't he

 2     say the man -- the elderly man was 45 to 50 years, also the women.

 3             MS. KRAVETZ:  No, Your Honour, he's talking about an additional

 4     person.

 5             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Okay.

 6             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] When I mentioned the age of 45 to

 7     50, I meant the old folks you asked me about, whereas the young people,

 8     they were about my age, these Serbs and these two.  They may have been a

 9     bit younger than me actually.

10             MS. KRAVETZ:

11        Q.   Just so it's perfectly clear, when you talk about the younger

12     people, whom are you speaking about specifically?

13        A.   The two gypsies, they were younger, my age roughly; then the

14     Serb -- so when I'm referring to the younger people, I mean these three.

15     And the others were between 45 and 50 years of age.

16        Q.   So after you went down to that basement and saw these people,

17     what did you do?

18        A.   Later we returned to that room where that table was, and Maxhup

19     then had one prisoner brought in and he was brought there.

20        Q.   Just to clarify, sir, you said you returned to that room where

21     the table was.  Which room was this?

22        A.   Yes.  When you enter the house it was the second room on the

23     right.

24        Q.   Just so the Judges are clear on the layout of the house, could

25     you just tell us, when you entered the house, how many rooms there are in

Page 1902

 1     the house and where this room was exactly.

 2        A.   As I've said already, the two rooms in front had no windows and

 3     then there were two more rooms behind these.  So there were four rooms in

 4     all.

 5        Q.   Okay.  So you said you were -- you went to this room with a table

 6     and Maxhup had one prisoner brought in.  What happened after this

 7     prisoner was brought in?

 8        A.   When the prisoner entered, an interrogation began about the

 9     whereabouts of their forces.  That's when I learned that the young one,

10     I'm talking about the Serb, the young boy or the young man, he was asked

11     where their forces were, where the check-points were, and such questions.

12        Q.   Was this prisoner that was brought in for interrogation one of

13     the persons you saw down in the basement or are you talking about someone

14     new that wasn't in the basement?

15        A.   I told you a short while ago that the Serb that I had seen in the

16     basement was brought in for interrogation.

17        Q.   You have referred to several Serbs that you saw in the basement.

18     Which one of those was brought in for interrogation, just so we're clear?

19     Are you talking about one of the elderly men or are you talking about the

20     younger?

21        A.   I told you that out of these three young people, one was a Serb

22     and that young Serb was brought.  I saw him when I entered and I speak

23     Serbian and other languages, and so I could tell that he was a Serb.  And

24     it became apparent when they brought him in for interrogation.

25        Q.   And what was he asked about during this interrogation?

Page 1903

 1        A.   As I've told you, they were questioning him about their

 2     check-points, where the police was, where their military units were, and

 3     those kinds of questions.

 4        Q.   Who was doing the questioning?

 5        A.   Maxhup was.

 6        Q.   Was there anyone else in the room during the questioning, apart

 7     from Maxhup?

 8        A.   I was there, a comrade of mine, and one of their men, a villager,

 9     a local soldier.

10        Q.   For how long did this questioning last?

11        A.   About half an hour, 45 minutes, roughly speaking.

12        Q.   And were you there throughout the questioning?

13        A.   Yes, mostly.  After a couple of questions we went out to the

14     yard.  It only went on for about half an hour, 45 minutes.  I didn't keep

15     the time, but it wasn't long.

16        Q.   Was this -- can you describe how this questioning took place in

17     this room?  Was the Serb boy sitting down?  Was he standing?  Can you

18     tell us how it took place?

19        A.   The youth had his hands tied behind his back and -- and, of

20     course, he was on his feet while the interrogation was going on.

21        Q.   And where exactly was Maxhup during this interrogation, where in

22     the room was he?

23        A.   In the room with a table and a chair.

24        Q.   You said that you were there for part of it and then you said "we

25     went out."  When you say "we," who are you referring to?

Page 1904

 1        A.   I and my comrade who was with me.

 2        Q.   What happened after this interrogation in the room ended?

 3        A.   As I said, we then went out.  It was by that time 9.00 or

 4     10.00 in the morning.  We got out into the open.  A while later they took

 5     out the two Roma and that individual who was being interrogated.

 6        Q.   When you say "they took out," who took out the two Roma?

 7        A.   The local soldiers who were there.

 8        Q.   And they took them out from where?

 9        A.   Out of the house where we were.

10        Q.   So are you saying that you went out into some sort of yard or you

11     went somewhere else?  What -- can you explain that?

12        A.   Yes, the yard.

13        Q.   And was the Serb young man also taken out to that yard?

14        A.   Yes, I told you a moment ago that two Roma and a Serb were taken

15     out.  And when I say "a Serb," I mean that Serb youth, he was taken out

16     together with the two Roma people.

17             MS. KRAVETZ:  Your Honour, I'm looking at the time.  I believe we

18     have a break at 10.15.  I would suggest --

19             JUDGE MOLOTO:  You are correct, ma'am.

20             MS. KRAVETZ:  I would suggest we do the break now before I move

21     on to a --

22             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Okay.

23             MS. KRAVETZ:  -- other areas.

24             JUDGE MOLOTO:  May the Chamber please move into closed session.

25                           [Closed session]


Page 1905

 1   (redacted)

 2   (redacted)

 3   (redacted)

 4   (redacted)

 5   (redacted)

 6   (redacted)

 7   (redacted)

 8   (redacted)

 9                           [Open session]

10             THE REGISTRAR:  Your Honours, we're back in open session.

11             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you so much.

12             We'll take a break and come back at quarter to 11.00.  Court

13     adjourned.

14                           --- Recess taken at 10.15 a.m.

15                           --- On resuming at 10.54 a.m.

16             JUDGE MOLOTO:  The Chamber has just been advised that the witness

17   (redacted)

18   (redacted)

19   (redacted).  So we'll probably stand

20     adjourned until we hear further from Madam Registrar.

21             I see counsel are -- look surprised.  Is there anybody who wants

22     to say anything?  Mr. Harvey, you looked like you wanted to say

23     something?

24             MR. HARVEY:  No, Your Honour, I'm surprised but I don't think I

25     have anything that I can usefully say to anyone.


Page 1906

 1             MR. GUY-SMITH:  I take it you would like for us to mill about the

 2     courtroom?

 3             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Indeed, mill about the building at least --

 4             MR. GUY-SMITH:  Very well, okay.

 5             JUDGE MOLOTO:  -- if not the courtroom so that you can be

 6     contacted should we resume.  We are also in complete darkness as to how

 7     serious this is.  Okay.

 8             Yes, Mr. --

 9             MR. EMMERSON:  Would it be convenient if we were to perhaps

10     schedule a time, say around noon, to take stock of whether we're likely

11     to be sitting again today?

12             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Madam Registrar is going to keep us updated.

13             MR. EMMERSON:  Very well.

14             JUDGE MOLOTO:  And we'll -- let's decide it upon whatever report

15     she gives us.

16             MR. EMMERSON:  Okay.  Thank you.

17             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Court adjourned.

18                           --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 10.56 a.m.,

19                           to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 22nd day of

20                           November, 2011, at 9.00 a.m.