1 Tuesday, 1 March 2011
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness takes the stand]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.02 a.m.
6 JUDGE KWON: Good morning, everyone.
7 Now we are back to Courtroom I.
8 Today, we are sitting in the absence of Judge Flavia Lattanzi,
9 who is indisposed today. I hope she will recover very soon.
10 Good morning, Mr. Witness.
11 WITNESS: KDZ020 [Resumed]
12 [Witness answered through interpreter]
13 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Karadzic, let's conclude your cross-examination
14 in 40 minutes' time.
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Excellency. Good
16 morning to everyone.
17 Cross-examination by Mr. Karadzic: [Continued]
18 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. Good morning, sir.
20 A. Good morning.
21 Q. In order to be fair to you, yesterday you mentioned Renovica. Is
22 it the Renovica who had a moustache and who was in the State Security in
23 the old system as well, so he's an old professional operative?
24 A. I'm thinking of Mile Renovica, who was the chief of the State
25 Security Service for Vogosca and Ilijas. He did have a moustache. I
1 don't know how long he was employed in the service.
2 Q. And was he introduced by the Serbian Democratic Party after the
3 1990s or was he in the service before that?
4 A. I don't know.
5 Q. In order to be fair to you, if this is an old cadre, then I did
6 recall him, and you are correct. But I thought that you were thinking of
7 a cadre of the Serbian Democratic Party, and there was no such person.
8 All right. Can you please tell us if you know what happened on
9 the 4th of May in Kotonje and after that in Vlahovici?
10 A. I don't know what you're specifically thinking of.
11 Q. On the 4th of May, did the -- were the Serbs in Kotonje attacked
12 as a minority community, and that many of them fled to Grahoviste, and
13 that they were captured and intercepted in Grahoviste and then later
14 killed? That was the group that was killed later?
15 A. Well, you put a number of questions and assertions here. Serbs
16 in Kotonje were not a minority community, absolutely not, because there
17 was a significant number of Serbs in Kotonje who lived there and worked
18 there. I'm not aware that they were attacked on the 4th of May, and I'm
19 not aware that they fled from Kotonje to Grahoviste. It wasn't logical
20 for somebody, even if they were attacked, had a need to escape from
21 Kotonje to Grahoviste. It would have been logical if they had a need to
22 escape from Kotonje somewhere. Then it would have made sense to flee
23 towards the centre of Vogosca, to that area, because the Serbs were
24 already in power there.
25 Q. If they had to pass by an armed group or something, I would agree
1 with that.
2 But let us now look at 1D3341 in the e-court. I believe that
3 there is a translation.
4 This is an announcement by the Crisis Staff of the Municipal
5 Assembly of Vogosca, and states that in relation to the arrests of nine
6 ethnic Serbs at Grahoviste on the 3rd and 4th of May, it is again
7 informing the public about certain details of the arrests.
8 I would like to ask that this page not be broadcast.
9 It states:
10 "One day before the arrests took place, Hamdija Ackar, a
11 well-known grocer from Kobilja Glava had arrived in Grahoviste ..."
12 Do you know this Hamdija Ackar?
13 A. Yes, I do.
14 Q. " ... and started ensuring inhabitants that there was no reason
15 to be afraid of Muslims. However, he advised them not to separate, and
16 if they had any weapons, not to fire. They spoke merrily, and then
17 immediately after he left, the -- right after he had left, Green Berets
18 came from the direction of the Salatovic [phoen] houses, with rifles
19 pointed at the people, and took away 11 men. They had been taken through
20 the woods to Barice."
21 Is this village of Barice close to Vogosca?
22 A. The village of Barice is between Kotonje and Ugorsko, and it's
23 part of the Vogosca municipality territory. So if you're going from the
24 direction of Kobilja Glava, you have Kobilja Glava, Hotonj, Glavica,
25 Ugorsko, and Vogosca as a populated area.
1 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
2 Could all parties please look at this. And then after that, I
3 would like to look at page 2 in the Serbian. I believe that it's also
4 page 2 in the English, and I would kindly ask that the document not be
5 broadcast. I'm not going to be reading it out loud. Page 2 of both
6 versions, please.
7 You can see that it states here "Haris Trnka; Cutura, Murat," and
8 so on. I'm not going to be reading the names, so please can everybody
9 look at the second paragraph on this page.
10 How is it possible that neighbours who -- no. Well, up in the
11 previous area, it says when they had arrived in Busci, Obren Sikiras and
12 Mile Palija were released, thanks to certain local Muslims, while the
13 other 9 were stripped naked and taken away. And then it says that the
14 neighbours did see and know who did that. Do you see these names?
15 A. Well, it doesn't say that in the Bosnian, but I do understand.
16 I can see the Cyrillic writing, and I can see the names.
17 Q. Would you like to read it in the English? If you cannot read it
18 in this Bosnian that doesn't exist, perhaps you can read it in English.
19 Perhaps it would be easier for you.
20 A. I would kindly ask you not to insult me. The language I speak is
21 called Bosnian. I'm a Bosniak by ethnicity, I'm a Muslim by faith, and
22 yesterday you referred to my ethnic group by its religious name. If you
23 would like to be fair until the end, I would like you to use the official
24 terms. I speak the Bosnian language. I understand the language that you
25 speak. By ethnicity, I'm a Bosniak, and I'm a Muslim by faith. I don't
1 want to be insulted here.
2 Q. Sir, you are possessing the -- laying claim on the language.
3 It's actually the Serbian language. You called yourselves Muslims and
4 Bosniaks, and you would be upset if you were referred to as something
6 JUDGE MORRISON: Dr. Karadzic, trading insults with the witness
7 is not only wasting your time, it's wasting the whole of the Court's
8 time. Now, please just carry on and ask specific questions relating to
9 the indictment.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I agree completely. I shouldn't
11 have been caught on his hook.
12 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. But, anyway, since you read in English -- you can read English,
14 do you see these three names here, sir?
15 A. Yes, I see all three of the names.
16 Q. Do you know these people?
17 A. Yes, I know each of these three people.
18 Q. Are you trying to say that these families were mistaken and they
19 don't know who took away their relatives?
20 A. How do you know what I want to say? Yesterday, you asked me,
21 too, about this event, you put questions to me about it, and I said that
22 in this instance, I didn't participate in any way in this incident, and
23 that I am prepared before any court in Bosnia-Herzegovina, in the world,
24 or before an international court, to reply to questions on this incident.
25 In this incident, I had no part in it, I had nothing to do with it.
1 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
2 Can we tender this document?
3 JUDGE KWON: Ms. Edgerton.
4 MS. EDGERTON: Well, while the witness did offer something with
5 respect to name recognition of some of the individuals involved, he
6 flatly denied any involvement in the incident that's brought out in the
7 document, Your Honours, so --
8 JUDGE KWON: How about the incident, itself?
9 MS. EDGERTON: As regards the incident, Your Honour, I'm not
10 accepting and we're not prepared to accept that it took place in any way
11 that was depicted in this document. I also don't find the incident to be
12 at all relevant.
13 JUDGE KWON: Do you like to reply, Mr. Karadzic?
14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson is going to reply.
15 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. President.
16 Well, first of all, we think that the witness's answers without
17 the document wouldn't have that much context, and this is a situation
18 where the document provides sufficient context for his answers that it
19 should be admitted.
20 And while it is true that he has denied the allegations about
21 himself in the document, I think it would be unfortunate if the Chamber
22 didn't receive a document simply -- that's so relevant to a witness and
23 to their credibility simply because the witness denied parts of its
24 contents. So I think there's sufficient elements within the witness's
25 answer to admit the document.
1 [Trial Chamber confers]
2 JUDGE KWON: Yes. In order to understand the context of the
3 witness's evidence, we admit this. Give the Defence exhibit number.
4 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit D1110, under seal, Your Honours.
5 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
7 Can we now have 1D3326, please. And can this document also not
8 be broadcast, please. I don't know if we have a translation, but the
9 date is the 12th of May. All right, we do have a translation.
10 Can we now look at page 4, please. In the Serbian, it's at the
11 top, in the right-hand column:
12 "According to eye-witnesses, Serbs and Muslims arrived ..."
13 And so on and so forth.
14 Can you look at that, please. In the English, it's page 6, but,
15 yes, we have it:
16 "According to the Serbian Muslim eye-witnesses ..."
17 And it says here -- actually, it repeats the same thing and says
18 that they were taken to Barice and the arrest was made by -- you can see
19 who it is. You can see, again, what it says, and then:
20 "The Crisis Staff of the Serbian Municipality of Vogosca will do
21 everything in their power to exchange the nine arrested Serbs for the
22 detainees from Svrake who participated in the armed attack on Vogosca."
23 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
24 Q. Do you know what happened with this? Do you know that these nine
25 people were exhumed and that traces of slaughter and massacre were found
1 on them?
2 A. While giving testimony here, I heard about it here. I don't know
3 if it was found that their throats had been cut and that they had been
4 massacred. I don't know that.
5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] All right.
6 Can we tender this document, please?
7 JUDGE KWON: Not this time. This is just a news clipping, and
8 the witness didn't confirm anything. And I think it's sufficient to have
9 admitted 1D3341, not this one.
10 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
11 Q. Can I remind you -- or, actually, do you agree -- do you remember
12 that on the 18th of April, the Green Berets, and the Muslim part of the
13 MUP, and SDA activists from Vogosca attacked the Pretis factory on the
14 18th of April?
15 A. Which incident are you thinking of, specifically?
16 Q. On the 18th of April, there was one single major incident by
17 these formations. Members of the Green Berets, the Muslim part of the
18 MUP, and the SDA activist attacked the Pretis factory, the military
19 factory Pretis. It was a large attack. Did that attack take place?
20 A. You're not saying the correct things.
21 Q. All right. Enlighten us, tell us what happened.
22 A. With pleasure.
23 On the 18th of April, a special unit of the Ministry of the
24 Interior, and you refer to them as the Muslim part of the MUP. Actually,
25 it was the special unit of the Ministry of the Interior under the command
1 of Dragan Vikic. It's generally known that Dragan Vikic is not a Muslim.
2 I hope you know that as well. You know very well who that man is.
3 Q. Dragan Vikic is a Croat. He was a member of the Muslim-Croat
4 coalition; is that correct?
5 A. I kindly ask you not to interrupt me. It's not important to me,
6 what Dragan Vikic is by ethnicity. In this context, it's important to
7 know that he's not a Muslim. The unit that he commanded throughout the
8 war was completely multi-ethnic. It had Bosniaks, Serbs, and Croats, and
9 other ethnicities. On the 18th of April, they entered the Pretis factory
10 and they took some of the weapons that were needed for the defence of the
11 town of Sarajevo. Thank God that they were successful, because by doing
12 that they saved hundreds of people from your shells and from your crimes.
13 This was a legal and legitimate action carried out by a unit of the legal
14 Ministry of the Interior, and the weapons, in any case, belonged to the
15 Government of Bosnia and Herzegovina. What was left of the weapons fell
16 into your hands, and it is well known how and how often you used it, all
17 the way until NATO bombed that particular factory.
18 Q. Mr. Witness, do you know that the Yugoslav People's Army, or
19 rather its unit that was guarding the factory, refused the warnings and
20 the assistance offered by the Serbian side because they did not consider
21 the Serbian side as an existing entity? They considered this factory to
22 be the property of the JNA, and, therefore, no attack by the MUP can be
23 considered legal if the target is a legal installation of the Yugoslav
24 People's Army?
25 A. Again, you are presenting erroneous facts. This factory was not
1 guarded by any JNA unit. The factory had its own internal security
2 service. Security officers, as they call them in English. This unit was
3 led by Risto Bajalo. You mentioned him here. And as I said, there was
4 no JNA unit guarding the factory. The responsibility for providing
5 external security was under the remit of the Government of
6 Bosnia-Herzegovina and the MUP forces.
7 Q. And these security officers within the factory, under whose
8 command were they?
9 A. They were under the command of Risto Bajalo, a Serb.
10 Q. And Risto Bajalo, under whose command was he?
11 A. I already told you the factory had its own internal security
12 service. Therefore, Risto Bajalo was an employee of the factory.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we now have 1D3327.
14 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. Mr. Witness, was this part of Pretis factory a military plant?
16 A. I believe so.
17 Q. Thank you. Can you please now look at the column on the left,
18 paragraph 3. It says:
19 "Members of the Green Berets and the so-called BH MUP carried out
20 an armed attack on the Unis factories in Vogosca, which resulted in the
21 first casualty. On that occasion, some of the Pretis special-purposes,
22 industry-produced products and a large number of the cars were looted and
23 stolen. This prompted the Serbs to take power in the municipality, and
24 all of this affected and resulted in the suspension of the production."
25 Is this the event that we are talking about?
1 A. You have already put forth a number of assertions that are
2 absolutely untrue. This event could not possibly be the last straw that
3 induced the Serbian Crisis Staff to take power in Vogosca, because they
4 had already had power in Vogosca and did what they wanted. I'm telling
5 you again, that was a legal police operation. There were no
6 Green Berets, no activists, no hoards, as you often call them in your
7 statements, took part in this operation. Therefore, we are talking about
8 a legal police operation carried out by the legal forces of the BH.
9 Q. So the victims were also legal?
10 A. There were -- what kind of casualties are you talking?
11 Q. How many Green Berets were killed on that day?
12 A. This operation was carried out so superbly that not a single
13 member of the police force, which you call Green Beret, was wounded. You
14 probably have wrong information provided to you by your people from
15 Vogosca. Nobody was killed, and none of the Pretis employees were among
16 the casualties. There were only casualties the following day. The first
17 operation was carried out during the night; whereas, the next day there
18 are casualties.
19 Q. Now, look at this:
20 "They burst into it on the 17th of April, and then they came back
21 on the 18th of April to capture the factory, which caused tremendous
23 Do not qualify my question. Does it say here that the
24 Crisis Staff took power at that point, and that was on the 14th of May?
25 A. I absolutely don't understand what you are trying to say. You
1 have cited a number of things that don't hold water, and I don't
2 understand them. You are completely lost in asking questions.
3 Q. Does it say that on the 13th of May, 1992, that this event was
4 the cause for the Serbs to take power?
5 A. Sir, I'm not interested at all in reading any pamphlet printed by
6 the SDS. This is a Chetnik and a Greater Serbian pamphlet full of lies.
7 Q. This is a municipal bulletin, not a pamphlet.
8 A. Was it a joint municipality or just a Serbian?
9 Q. Only the Serbian.
10 A. So now you expect me to accept the statements of Chetnik
12 Q. Now, you see, sir, why you have been branded as a dangerous
14 A. If I may be allowed to answer this question.
15 Mr. Accused, I am a Muslim, and I will remain a Muslim forever.
16 You are not a relevant person -- you're absolutely not a relevant person,
17 particularly in the position that you are in, to judge whether I am an
18 extremist or not. This is up to you. I am telling the truth here, and I
19 refuse to be insulted. I cannot be anything else but a Muslim. However,
20 your blind hate of the Muslims is your problem; it's not my problem.
21 Q. Do you see what is written here about the 3rd of May, saying that
22 Green Berets from Kobilja Glava, together with HOS, attacked Blagovac?
23 Was Blagovac and part of Hotonj, where Serbs lived, attacked as well as
24 the central part of Vogosca? Did that take place on the 3rd of May?
25 A. There was some combat operation. I don't know which operation
1 you're having in mind. I don't know whether there was one on the 3rd of
2 May, but there were no HOS members or Green Berets taking part in these
3 operations where police and the regular Territorial Defence, which was
4 later renamed Army of BH. Of course, you find it difficult to say the
5 name of BH Army because they have caused so much trouble for you. And,
6 of course, we are talking about regular MUP police forces. But I do
7 understand your need to distort the truth.
8 Q. Did the BH Army exist on the 3rd of May?
9 A. There was a regular and a lawful Territorial Defence of
10 Bosnia-Herzegovina, which would later grow into the Army of
12 Q. Now, what was the basis for this regular, whatever you wish to
13 call it, force, to attack Kotonje, the Serbian village of Blagovac,
14 Krivoglavci, and the central parts of Vogosca? What was the reason for
15 that attack?
16 A. First of all, the TO and the police did not attack the Serbian
17 village of Blagovac, as you say, although in this village, the Serbs were
18 a dominant community. But there were also Bosniaks and Albanians living
19 there as well.
20 Now, from these positions -- positions from Krivoglavci, from
21 Blagovac, from the central parts, there were shells fired on a daily
22 basis. What do you expect them to do? Should they have been sitting and
23 not responding to fire? People were being killed by shells, by snipers.
24 The power -- the power was cut, the water supply was cut. Did you expect
25 us to sit quietly and just look at it without doing anything? You, as a
1 peacemaker, wanted to ethnically cleanse Vogosca.
2 Q. Please refrain from these patterns.
3 Were you fired at from Vogosca and all these parts before the
4 3rd of May?
5 A. I kindly ask you again not to interrupt me again.
6 Q. You are wasting my time. Please answer my questions. Don't ask
7 me questions.
8 JUDGE KWON: Just a second. Please calm down.
9 And you don't have much time, Mr. Karadzic. Just ask the
10 questions one by one.
11 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. The question is clear. Are you saying that -- as you say, the
13 fact that fire was being opened, did that happen before the 3rd of May?
14 A. You had started firing before the 7th of January, 1992, from
15 artillery guns, from sniper rifles. You were using the whole arsenal of
16 weapons that you had at your disposal. Are you trying to tell me that
17 that is not true?
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. We are going to ask the
19 OTP to corroborate your statement with appropriate documents.
20 Can we have this document tendered into evidence, because it was
21 a contemporaneous document drafted at the time of the event?
22 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Karadzic, you put your question to the witness
23 based upon the viewpoint of this article, and the witness answered
24 clearly to the questions, so we don't need -- we don't need this article
25 to understand the context of the witness's evidence.
1 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
2 Can we now have 1D3346.
3 This is news from Bosnia, published by the Sandzak News Forum,
4 which is a Muslim forum based in Sandzak, in Serbia, and it says here:
5 "On the night between the 17th and 18th of April, special MUP
6 units, based on the previous co-operation, established contacts with the
7 most responsible people from Vogosca and demanded support for carrying
8 out an operation in order to take out equipment and materiel from the
9 Vogosca Pretis factory and take them away from TO Vogosca."
10 It says here that a number of Patriotic League were involved in
11 this. Then it says that from Stari Grad municipality, units were
12 dispatched. And towards the bottom, it says part of the unit TO
13 Novi Grad, led by the late Safet Hadzic - and later on a street was named
14 after him - Safet Hadzic, unfortunately, with his van came to the unit's
15 main gate, where from the forest and the bunker across, they were faced
16 with Chetnik bursts of fire from machine-guns.
17 Do you agree that a number of people were killed on that occasion
18 and that Safet Hadzic was amongst them?
19 JUDGE KWON: Before you answer, Mr. Witness: Yes, Ms. Edgerton.
20 MS. EDGERTON: It would have been useful to have been notified
21 about this document.
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I agree and I apologise, but this
23 is the result of the witness's rebuttal of things that are generally
25 JUDGE KWON: It is something from one's blog.
1 Yes, in any event, can you answer the question, Mr. Witness?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Of course I can, Your Honours.
3 This was taken off a private Internet provider. Anyone can have
4 their blog on the Internet, and they can put on it whatever they please.
5 I absolutely don't want to comment what is written here, because a huge
6 number of things stated here are not true. It's your problem, if you had
7 been using this for your propaganda purposes.
8 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. Is this a Muslim blog, sir?
10 A. I browsed the Internet very often, and I don't care whether any
11 blog is Muslim, Croatian, Australian, Israeli, or whatever. I don't view
12 them in that way. I don't know if it is Muslim. Objectively speaking,
13 it could have been created by the Serbs.
14 Q. The Serbs, in that case, would have called it "Raska." Do you
16 A. No, I don't agree. For me, Sandzak is Sandzak, and you may call
17 it what you want.
18 Q. Sir, do you dispute that Safet Hadzic, a hero after whom a street
19 was named, was killed on the night between the 17th and 18th on the
20 attack on Pretis?
21 A. Mr. Safet Hadzic was killed one day after the operation carried
22 out by the MUP special unit.
23 I haven't finished.
24 So the special unit carried out an attack during the night, and
25 before dawn they left the premises of the factory. Safet Hadzic,
1 however, was killed sometime around noon on the following day.
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we have this blog admitted into
4 JUDGE KWON: We have no basis, Mr. Karadzic, to admit this.
5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Very well.
6 Can we now have 1D3340, and can it please not be broadcast.
7 This is a document that was retrieved from the archives, and it
8 was created from the 1993/1994 section. We still don't have a
9 translation. I'm going to read it.
10 Archive document. The year is --
11 JUDGE KWON: This is another document which was not notified?
12 MS. EDGERTON: Correct.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I am really sorry, but this pace is
14 really killing me, and it is affecting our ability to present evidence,
15 and it can also jeopardise our health.
16 Now, I am going to present this to everyone concerned. This is
17 an archived document kept in the archives, and this document was created
18 in 1993 and 1994.
19 Can we please have page 4. Do not broadcast this.
20 Here, listed are the activities, the crimes, and the
21 mistreatment, and the names of the perpetrators.
22 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. Now, Witness, if you'll look on the column on the left,
24 paragraph 3, "Nijaz Grebovac" and the others, look at these names. Do
25 you see that according to these archived documents, all these people took
1 part in organised taking away of the Serbs to Kosevo, where they were
2 executed? They also carried out preparations for combat and provided
3 arms to the Muslims? Can you see these five names here?
4 A. Out of these five names that we see here, only two are people
5 from Kobilja Glava. So that is incorrect, for starters.
6 I have already denied participation in what you are trying to
7 impose on all of us here now, so this doesn't really mean anything to me,
8 that my name is contained in your archives. As a matter of fact, I am
9 pleased that that is the case, because it means how worthy I am.
10 Q. Thank you very much.
11 A. You're welcome.
12 Q. Look at these names. Where it says, at the very bottom, that
13 during lunch, they killed the Ristovic family sometime in the summer of
14 1992. Is it true that the Ristovic family was found having lunch at home
15 and then they were killed, all of them? Just say that, don't be afraid.
16 A. Don't you worry about me. I'm not afraid. It is true that the
17 Ristovic family was killed. Nobody is denying that, and don't you worry
18 about me.
19 Q. What about these starting with the letters "Zh" onwards?
20 A. Yes, I know each and every one of them because they live there --
21 they lived there, rather, at Kobilja Glava.
22 Q. Thank you.
23 A. And that's no secret.
24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
25 Can this document be admitted, or marked for identification
1 before it's translated?
2 MS. EDGERTON: Your Honour, what's the provenance of the
3 document? "An archival document" means absolutely nothing to us.
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] May I explain?
5 The Army of Republika Srpska and the ministry were abolished, but
6 all of this material has been archived, and that was done then in 1993
7 and 1994. That's the date of the document, and these complete archives
8 were established. And the Ministry of Defence of Republika Srpska no
9 longer exists, but the archives remained within the joint documentation.
10 I'm afraid that you have been notified of this document, that the
11 Prosecution had been notified that this document would crop up.
12 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Witness, have you heard of a person by the name
13 of Milorad Bukva?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Never heard of that person.
15 JUDGE KWON: We mark it for identification, but only for the
16 purpose of understanding the context of the witness, because this was put
17 to the witness. He identified some names and some incidents, not beyond
18 any more.
19 MS. EDGERTON: Yes, thank you. We just -- I don't know what the
20 document is at all. That's the basis of my question, and I'm still no
21 clearer on what the document is.
22 JUDGE KWON: Really? I'll consult my colleagues.
23 [Trial Chamber confers]
24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] May I say something before you
25 reach your decision?
1 These are archived documents, and they have become part of the
2 archives of all of Bosnia-Herzegovina. And notice was provided yesterday
3 that I would be using this document during the cross-examination. These
4 are voluminous archives.
5 JUDGE KWON: At this moment, we are not satisfied with the
6 foundation of this document, Mr. Karadzic. And some parts of this
7 document was recognised by the witness, and I think it's sufficient by
8 this. At this moment, we would not admit this document.
9 You have five minutes to conclude.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I would kindly request a few more
12 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. Witness, are you sure that these paramilitaries existed in your
14 day in Vogosca, these White Eagles and whatever, and how did you
15 recognise them?
16 A. What do you mean, specifically, Mr. Accused?
17 Q. Well, you mentioned in different statements and during the
18 examination-in-chief that there were different paramilitary groups there,
19 that the White Eagles and Seselj's men were there, and that you
20 recognised them by the white eagles that they wore?
21 A. Well, it's a generally-known thing that Seselj's soldiers, the
22 White Eagles, were in Vogosca. They were put up at the Park Hotel. Any
23 child in Vogosca knew that. Any inhabitants of Bosnia-Herzegovina knew
24 that. It is a generally-known fact that they took part in military
25 operations, and their leader, Seselj - do not interrupt me, I haven't
1 finished - said in public several times that that was the case, and he
2 boasted about the participation of his soldiers in the fighting there.
3 Q. Thank you.
4 A. You're welcome.
5 Q. You've already said that.
6 Up until November -- oh, I'm sure that we will probably have to
7 move into private session briefly.
8 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
9 MS. EDGERTON: Your Honour, if I may, I'd like to apologise and
10 correct myself. I'm sorry, we don't need to be in private session for
11 this, but I thought I'd better do it sooner, rather than later.
12 With respect to the last document, I was ill-informed as to the
13 notification, and we misunderstood the notification e-mail, and I very
14 much wanted to make my apologies to everyone in that regard.
15 JUDGE KWON: Very well. Let's go into private session.
16 [Private session]
11 Pages 12627-12628 redacted. Private session.
22 [Open session]
23 JUDGE KWON: Yes, we are now in open session.
24 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. So it's paragraph 30 of your amalgamated statement, where it
2 [In English] "First, I would like to explain that at this
3 meeting, there was also the chief of the Security Services Centre
4 present ..."
5 [Interpretation] And so on:
6 [In English] "Probably they planned that Maksimovic would be
7 present at the meeting."
8 [Interpretation] Who is "they," who is the "they"?
9 A. I don't understand what you're trying to ask me.
10 Q. All right, we'll leave that aside. We don't have enough time.
11 Do you have the amalgamated statement there?
12 JUDGE KWON: Why don't we up-load his amalgamated statement,
13 para 30, around the region of page 9. I take it there's no B/C/S version
14 of his amalgamated statements.
15 He's referring to your statement.
16 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
17 Q. Do you see this part here? There was a meeting. Koprivica
18 mentioned Momo. Then Tintor was there. And then Tintor's answer that
19 Momo was in the Assembly.
20 So you are saying here that -- well, you were probably
21 interpreting some intercepted conversation. Krajisnik was president of
22 the Assembly, while Momo Mandic was not a member of the Assembly and
23 wouldn't have any reason to be there:
24 [In English] "That is why I am sure Krajisnik is referred to
25 here. I am certain that Koprivica had contacted Krajisnik to let him
1 know about the problem, and that he asked for the instructions on how to
3 [Interpretation] Did you know that? Are you firmly convinced
4 that it is so? Do you have any proof that he called him?
5 A. I knew.
6 Q. How come?
7 A. Well, of course I knew, because Koprivica on several occasions
8 said that to me, as far as this particular problem was concerned as well,
9 that he would not take a single step without consulting Momo Krajisnik.
10 So I did know.
11 Q. And then you draw the following conclusion:
12 "That means that Krajisnik ..."
13 [In English] " ... had the authority to give an order to be
14 implemented through Koprivica and Tintor."
15 [Interpretation] Is this something that you drafted, or did
16 somebody ask you to interpret what Krajisnik could do and what that would
18 A. Again, you're putting an unclear question to me. I already gave
19 a specific answer.
20 On several occasions, Rajko Koprivica told me, even about this
21 problem, that he would not make any moves without first consulting
22 Momcilo Krajisnik, and you know that is so too. So there's no dilemma
23 there. I don't know what the formulation is in the Bosnian language and
24 how that has been translated to you into the Serbian, and then into the
25 English in turn. And the conclusion that you draw from all of that, that
1 is quite a different matter.
2 Q. Sir, I'm asking you: You're drawing the conclusion that this
3 means that Krajisnik -- why didn't you write that down, that Koprivica
4 informed you that in this case, he called Krajisnik?
5 A. I didn't write this. I was speaking. I was telling the
6 investigators, and they were writing it down. I don't know how they
7 understood it in the English. I don't know.
8 Q. Please, I must say something here in order to be fair to you and
9 to the OTP and to the transcript.
10 The authors of these amalgamated statements are not witnesses.
11 It's evident that the witness has now said that he didn't write this.
12 A. No, no, no, no, I don't expect you to direct me. I signed this
13 statement. It was read back to me in the English and in the Bosnian.
14 Therefore, you cannot -- you cannot, and it does not stand as a fact --
15 or the allegation doesn't stand that somebody chose these words for me.
16 Q. Witness, sir, who selected the words, the information?
17 A. Sir, I spoke in the Bosnian. I'm not an expert in English. I
18 don't know how the interpreter translated it. I don't know that, but I
19 know what I said in the Bosnian. I know -- I hope you understand the
20 Bosnian language.
21 Q. All right, thank you.
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can I now ask you, please, to allow
23 me to address the Chamber.
24 What is of concern to the Defence is the piling up of cliches and
25 different things from one amalgamated statement to the next. This is
1 causing the Defence to expend a lot of resources and time on that. This
2 is not something that the witnesses have said. This is something that is
3 created by the OTP. I do not want to insult or attack anyone, but I want
4 to put it to the Chamber that, as far as we're concerned, it's confusing,
5 coming from our legal system, it presents a burden, because an
6 investigating judge would not allow such things to be part of the
7 statement unless he could see that it was corroborated or not. These
8 amalgamated statements are full of general statements, political cliches,
9 and it is my only hope that this Trial Chamber, as the Chamber of Judges,
10 professionals, without a jury, will be able to establish what's what.
11 But I would really like to ask the Trial Chamber to ask the OTP to stop
12 burdening us with quantity, rather than quality, at the expense of
13 quality. The Defence is snowed under a vast number of statements that
14 are uncorroborated and which would not be acceptable in our legal system.
15 Thank you, I am finished.
16 JUDGE KWON: Let's hope the Judges will be able to sift the wheat
17 from the chaff.
18 Yes, Ms. Edgerton.
19 MS. EDGERTON: Thank you.
20 Re-examination by Ms. Edgerton:
21 Q. (redacted), I'd like to ask you a couple of additional
22 questions --
23 THE ACCUSED: [No interpretation]
24 MS. EDGERTON: I think I need a redaction, Your Honour, please.
25 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
1 MS. EDGERTON:
2 Q. Mr. Witness, I'd like to ask you a couple of questions based on
3 your testimony of the last couple of days; to begin with, some evidence
4 that you gave yesterday.
5 At page 12492, line 10, referring to September 1991, you said
7 "The Crisis Staff at Vogosca was established at the time I
9 You also said:
10 "I heard from Serbs who were in -- I heard that from Serbs who
11 were in official positions and didn't conceal that either."
12 Could you tell us who you heard this from, then, and what did
13 they say?
14 A. Specifically, the first information I got about that was from
15 Borislav Maksimovic, and he said that, in any case, he had to listen to
16 and do what the Crisis -- Serbian Crisis Staff decided. In a broader
17 context, Koprivica even mentioned that, because they felt so secure and
18 safe that they did not conceal the existence of the Serbian Crisis Staff,
19 nor did they feel that there was a need to conceal something like that.
20 Q. So you've just said, in answer to my question, that you -- as to
21 who you heard of the existence of the Crisis Staff from, you've just
22 named Rajko Koprivica and Borislav Maksimovic. Is there any other Serb
23 in official positions that you heard this from?
24 A. Svetozar Stanic was there, who was a pretty open and quite fair
25 man. There was Slavko Jovanovic, who was the former president of the
1 Municipal Assembly. I was on relatively good terms with him, we
2 communicated well. I frequently spoke with Tintor as well. He would
3 introduce himself as the deputy president of the Serbian Democratic
4 Party, and as a representative of all the Serbs in Vogosca, and as a
5 member of the Serbian Crisis Staff, a person who is responsible for
7 Q. Thank you. Now, just to go further: At page 12515, lines 11 to
8 14, in answer to a question from Dr. Karadzic, you said that you heard
9 from specific Serbs, who communicated with you, that the Serbs had
10 established a territorial defence since September in Vogosca. You asked
11 Dr. Karadzic:
12 "Do you want me to give you the name?"
13 And Dr. Karadzic replied: "No, no."
14 Could you give us the name?
15 A. More or less, these are the same people that I already mentioned.
16 But the first time I received this information was from
17 Jovo Baranovic [phoen], who was the commander of the joint TO staff,
18 practically. But more or less all the people that I mentioned already
19 confirmed and spoke about that fact.
20 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please be asked to speak into
21 the microphone.
22 MS. EDGERTON:
23 Q. I've been asked by my colleagues, the interpreters, if you could
24 speak more directly into the microphone. They would be able to hear you
25 better and be able to interpret you a bit more effectively.
1 Now, further in your evidence of yesterday, in the discussion of
2 the replacement of Zeljko Skrbic, which was at pages 12539 to 12540, at
3 page 12540 you said to Dr. Karadzic:
4 "If you allow me, I can explain to the Trial Chamber the reasons
5 why the replacement took place."
6 And Dr. Karadzic said:
7 "We'll get to that."
8 I wonder if you can explain, briefly, the reasons why the
9 replacement of Zeljko Skrbic took place.
12 MS. EDGERTON: Your Honour, having a look at the witness's
13 answer, although the question didn't call for private session, I think
14 the answer might well have.
15 JUDGE KWON: Very well.
16 MS. EDGERTON: Thank you.
17 Q. Further, at page 12549, line 10, you were asked yesterday:
18 "Please, could you tell us against whom the president of Vogosca
19 municipality wanted to mobilise the TO in September 1991?"
20 And as part of your response, you said:
21 "The situation in the municipality was already such that the
22 existing police forces were unable to keep law and order, and it was
23 necessary to mobilise the TO so that they could assist in improving the
24 situation in the municipality."
25 You referred also, at page 12571, line 15, to valid reasons to
1 muster the TO units. And I'd like to ask you if you could tell us what,
2 in September 1991, was the situation in Vogosca that led to the attempt
3 to mobilise the Territorial Defence.
4 And, please, in your answer, if you feel your answer would lead
5 you to divulge your identity, feel free to ask for private session.
6 A. We can move into private session right away, then.
7 JUDGE KWON: Yes, let's do that.
8 [Private session]
11 Page 12639 redacted. Private session.
15 [Open session]
16 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Witness.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The special police unit carried out
18 its action during the night and, at dawn, left the Pretis compound. So
19 the police action ended with that. There were no casualties on any side
20 during the police action. No one was wounded, no one was killed. The
21 police carried out their action brilliantly, in a professional way.
22 The following way, Safet Hadzic's group - these were members of
23 the Territorial Defence from Novi Grad - went to the Pretis factory to
24 take weapons from there. The Pretis factory has two gates. One is
25 called the main gate, and the second gate is called the industrial gate.
1 The special units entered the factory through the industrial gate because
2 it is closer from the Kobilja Glava direction. However, Safet Hadzic and
3 his TO group from Novi Grad were not aware of this fact, and instead of
4 entering the Pretis factory through the industrial gate, they tried to
5 enter through the main gate. At the main gate, they were intercepted by
6 members of the Serbian TO. And as soon as they left their vehicles, came
7 to the main gate, these people opened fire. Safet Hadzic was killed at
8 that time, and I don't know how many other members of the TO from
9 Novi Grad; maybe four or five of them. Six or seven people were wounded.
10 This is the truth, this is how it happened.
11 MS. EDGERTON: Thank you.
12 I don't have anything further, Your Honours.
13 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
14 Then that concludes your evidence, Mr. Witness. Thank you for
15 your coming to The Hague to give it.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you for listening to me.
17 JUDGE KWON: Please have a safe journey back home.
18 Please wait until we draw the curtain.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
20 JUDGE KWON: Wait for a minute.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
22 JUDGE KWON: Shall we go into private session briefly.
23 [Private session]
11 Page 12642 redacted. Private session.
5 [Open session]
6 JUDGE KWON: I note the time.
7 We take a break for half an hour.
8 Yes, Mr. Tieger.
9 MR. TIEGER: Just very quickly, Your Honour.
10 In the interests of overall efficiency and decorum, we try to be
11 sparing about rising in response to comments by the accused, but in this
12 instance -- so in this instance, let me simply say that with respect to
13 the comments about amalgamated statements, we reject them as virtually
14 wholly inaccurate.
15 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. President.
16 While we maybe have a few minutes before we take a break, if
17 I can address that issue. This is something that has cropped up
18 regularly by Dr. Karadzic in our discussions, and I know he's brought
19 this to the attention of the Chamber on several occasions, and I remember
20 that Judge Morrison suggested that he consider addressing this issue in
22 And I just want to explain to the Chamber that basically what
23 Dr. Karadzic asks me on many occasions, and to which I have always given
24 him the same answer, is, What is the effect of these amalgamated
25 statements, including many generalisations that appear in those
1 statements? And I've told him that under Rule 92 ter, everything in an
2 amalgamated statement is evidence as if the witness uttered those words
3 in the courtroom, and that to the extent that he wants to challenge that
4 evidence, he has to do so during his cross-examination. And that advice
5 is not something that Dr. Karadzic likes to hear, because he doesn't feel
6 he has enough time to deal with all of those matters in his
7 cross-examination, and that's the source of the frustration that he has,
8 that he regularly expresses to the Chamber.
9 So I wanted to explain that. And if my advice is erroneous, then
10 I apologise, but I don't think it is.
11 JUDGE MORRISON: Well, Mr. Robinson, I don't think your advice is
13 Inevitably, one thing that concerns the Judges - I'm speaking,
14 but I think I speak for my colleagues as well - is the huge amount of
15 evidence that's coming before the Court, and, inevitably, some of it is
16 of more probative value than others. Some of it may turn out to be of no
17 probative value at all. But a striving by all parties to reduce the
18 burden of evidence is going to do three things: It's going to
19 concentrate the Court on the issues; it's going to reduce the time that
20 the whole trial takes; and it's going to make the monumental task of
21 writing a judgement in this case more concise and, frankly, easier.
22 Those are all self-evident points, I suspect, but they are ones that the
23 Judges would certainly like all parties to bear at the forefront of their
25 JUDGE KWON: Even if the evidence-in-chief is led live, one
1 cannot deal with every aspect of the evidence-in-chief. Let's
2 concentrate on important issues, and then believe in the Judges' --
3 professional Judges' ability.
4 We'll adjourn for half an hour. We'll resume at 11.00.
5 --- Recess taken at 10.28 a.m.
6 [The witness entered court]
7 --- On resuming at 11.00 a.m.
8 JUDGE KWON: Good morning, Mr. Muracevic.
9 If you could take the solemn declaration.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
11 I solemnly declare that I will speak the truth, the whole truth,
12 and nothing but the truth.
13 WITNESS: ESET MURACEVIC
14 [Witness answered through interpreter]
15 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Please be seated.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
17 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Ms. Sutherland.
18 MS. SUTHERLAND: Thank you, Your Honours. Good morning.
19 Examination by Ms. Sutherland:
20 Q. Good morning, Mr. Muracevic.
21 Could you please state your full name?
22 A. Good morning. My name is Eset Muracevic.
23 Q. As we've discussed, part of your evidence in this case will be
24 submitted in writing, so we first need to deal with the formalities
25 associated with that submission.
1 It's right, isn't it, that you've provided a number of statements
2 generally to the Bosnian authorities, and also statements in relation to
3 a number of suspects?
4 A. Yes, I did.
5 Q. You've also provided a number of statements to members of the
6 Office of the Prosecutor of this Tribunal?
7 A. That's right.
8 Q. You've also had an opportunity to review a statement which has
9 consolidated relevant information from these prior statements into one
10 amalgamated witness statement; is that right?
11 A. Yes, that's right.
12 MS. SUTHERLAND: Mr. Registrar, could I have 65 ter 90228 on the
13 screen, please.
14 Q. Mr. Muracevic, is this the statement that you reviewed? Do you
15 recognise your signature at the bottom of the page?
16 A. Yes, this is the statement that I signed.
17 Q. And you initialled each page and signed the last page; is that
19 A. That's right.
20 Q. Do you confirm that the statement is accurate?
21 A. Yes, it is accurate.
22 Q. If you were asked today about the same matters contained within
23 that statement, would you provide the same information to the
24 Trial Chamber?
25 A. Yes, I would provide the same answers.
1 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, I tender 65 ter number 90228, the
2 statement of the witness, into evidence.
3 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
4 THE REGISTRAR: That will be admitted as Exhibit P2361.
5 MS. SUTHERLAND: With Your Honours' leave, I'll now read a
6 summary of the witness's written evidence.
7 Prior to the conflict in Bosnia-Herzegovina, the witness worked
8 for many years as the secretary of the local commune of Svrake, in the
9 Vogosca municipality. The witness describes events from the multi-party
10 elections and changes that were felt in the village from that point on.
11 At the beginning of 1992, check-points were established on all
12 main roads. In early March 1992, Muslim-owned houses came under infantry
13 fire and another set on fire. Barricades were established in the Svrake
15 The witness describes the arming of the local Serb population by
16 the JNA and others. Weapons from the Pretis factory in Vogosca were
17 taken to the Semizovac military barracks, from where the local Bosnian
18 Serb population collected automatic rifles and ammunition.
19 At the beginning of May 1992, the village of Svrake was attacked
20 by SDS paramilitary formations, houses destroyed, and the village
22 On the 4th of May, 1992, when a convoy of around 600 villagers
23 attempted to escape to the Bosnian-controlled territory of Breza, the
24 last group of 430 villagers were stopped by police and soldiers and taken
25 to the military barracks in Semizovac.
1 From May until December 1992, the witness was detained in a
2 number of different facilities under the control of the Bosnian Serb
3 authorities. He was first detained in a facility known as the bunker,
4 which was nearby to the local restaurant Kontiki, otherwise known as
5 Kod Sonja. While he was held at the bunker, he was taken to another
6 facility for one night, known as Naka's garage, where a large number of
7 local non-Serb population were being held. Around 11 August 1992, he and
8 other detainees were transferred from the bunker to a detention facility
9 known as Planjo's house.
10 The witness describes how the detainees were interrogated,
11 beaten, abused, and threatened with death by the guards, interrogators,
12 and various other groups, including Seselj's men, who would enter the
13 bunker and Planjo's house. Branko Vlaco, the head of the detention
14 facilities in Vogosca, was regularly present when the detainees were
15 subjected to the abuse.
16 The witness describes the conditions at the bunker. The
17 detainees received little food, slept on cold, wet floors, and did not
18 receive medical treatment. A number of detainees were taken from the
19 bunker for exchange and never seen again.
20 On a number of occasions, the witness and other detainees were
21 taken from the bunker and Planjo's house for forced labour to the
22 front-lines, where they were also used as human shields. A number of
23 detainees were killed and injured doing this forced labour and being used
24 as human shields. Bodies of those killed while forced -- doing forced
25 labour were brought back to Planjo's house and buried by other detainees
1 in the local cemetery. The witness describes a visit in August 1992 to
2 Planjo's house by Momcilo Mandic and a journalist from Serb Radio/TV in
3 Pale. Mandic told the detainees that there was no need for them to be
4 exchanged because they were already at their homes.
5 On the 5th of December, 1992, the witness was taken from Planjo's
6 house to the front-line and used as a human shield, and while at the
7 front-line, he managed to escape to Bosnian-held territory.
8 After his escape, the witness resided in Sarajevo. He describes
9 the terror inflicted on the population, the civilian population, by the
10 shelling and sniping by the Bosnian Serb forces, and relates specific
11 instances of shelling of the city between 1993 and 1995, when he was
12 wounded as a result of the shelling.
13 In 1996, after re-integration, the witness found a number of
14 documents in the Vogosca municipality building and provided those
15 documents to a number of Bosnian agencies and also to the ICTY. He
16 provides information relating to some of these documents and also
17 additional documents shown to him.
18 Your Honour, that completes the summary of the witness's written
19 evidence. I have a number of question.
20 Q. Mr. Muracevic, as secretary of the Local Commune of Svrake,
21 briefly, what were your duties in early 1992?
22 A. As the Local Commune secretary, I was involved in technical
23 issues relating to the organisation of life at the level of the Local
24 Commune. That also included co-ordination with political parties,
25 co-ordination of certain actions that were organised at the level of the
1 Local Commune. I was in charge of that.
2 Around 1200 people lived in my village, predominantly of Muslim
3 ethnicity; i.e., around 1.036. There were only 170 Serbs, whereas the
4 remaining population was composed of members from other communities, such
5 as Croats, Yugoslavs, and those who declared themselves as the others.
6 Before the war, my village was one of the best-known villages
7 where good inter-ethnic relations prevailed. Therefore, there was no
8 indication before the war of what happened later in 1992 and thereafter.
9 Q. Your statement contains details of your interrogations and
10 beatings in the bunker, and conditions of detention, and that's at
11 paragraphs 20 to 61, and also in Planjo's house, and that's paragraph 62
12 to 84. So I'm not going to ask you to expand on those details in the
13 limited time I have, because I wish to show you a number of documents.
14 If we could have 65 ter 19133, a photograph, please. It consists
15 of two photographs. If we could have the first -- the exterior
16 photograph first.
17 Mr. Muracevic, looking at the photograph in the top left-hand
18 corner, the upper photograph there - there's two photographs - do you
19 recognise what's depicted there?
20 A. This photograph shows the camp or the bunker close to Kontiki Bed
21 and Breakfast in Vogosca. It was better known as Kod Sonja. At the time
22 when I was there, this bunker was not covered with roof tiles. The
23 photograph beneath depicts one of the rooms inside the bunker, where we
24 were detained.
25 MS. SUTHERLAND: Thank you.
1 I seek to tender 65 ter number 19133, which consists of those two
2 photographs, Your Honour.
3 JUDGE KWON: Different from this map, together with pictures?
4 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, we can admit the whole map. That's
5 part of -- oh, I'm sorry. I called up 19133, which is the entire map.
6 The two photographs are in 65 ter number 01449. So I'm in Your Honours'
7 hands as to whether you wish --
8 JUDGE KWON: Having the benefit of the computer, through which we
9 can zoom in, I don't think we need to accept separately the two photos.
10 I think this will --
11 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yeah. Or we could actually admit the two
12 photographs, which are 01449.
13 JUDGE KWON: If you please, yes.
14 MS. SUTHERLAND: Oh, I'm sorry.
15 JUDGE KWON: No problem. We'll admit 1449.
16 MS. SUTHERLAND: I'm sorry, Your Honour. It's -- I misspoke when
17 I mentioned the 65 ter number 01449. It's simply 19133, which is what
18 we're seeing on the screen. I'm sorry, my apologies.
19 I wish to show 65 ter number 23096. And, Your Honours, I seek
20 leave to use that photograph -- that's to add it to our 65 ter list.
21 JUDGE KWON: Yes. So shall we admit 19133?
22 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes, please.
23 JUDGE KWON: Very well.
24 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P2362, Your Honours.
25 MS. SUTHERLAND:
1 Q. Mr. Muracevic, do you see what's depicted and do you recognise
2 what's depicted in that photograph?
3 A. This photograph depicts one of the camps known as Naka's garage.
4 It's a tyre repair shop of Nasif Karalic, and it was used as a camp known
5 as Naka's garage.
6 Q. And in your statement, you say that you were taken there for one
7 night only and then back to the bunker; is that right?
8 A. That's right. I saw around 150 people, residents from my
9 village, in this facility who were detained there.
10 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, I seek to tender that photograph.
11 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
12 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P2363, Your Honours.
13 MS. SUTHERLAND:
14 Q. Mr. Muracevic, what happened to the house that you lived in in
16 A. Since in the attack on my village, the JNA Air Force was also
17 used to bomb my village, close to my house eight aerial bombs fell, but
18 did not explode. However, after the village was captured by
19 representatives of the Bosnian Serbs some 10 or 15 days later, they took
20 a number of detainees from the camp who were in the bunker with me, and
21 they forced these people to carry one of those unexploded bombs into my
22 house, into the local mosque in Svrake, and a third one in
23 Nurija Selimovic's business premises in Gora Local Commune. By
24 detonating these devices, they demolished my house, the mosque, and the
25 business premises of Mr. Selimovic.
1 Q. I want to turn now to what you describe in paragraph 69 to 84 of
2 your statement, and that is how you and other detainees were taken for
3 forced labour and used as human shields. Can you first briefly describe
4 for the Chamber what you had to physically do when you were taken for
5 forced labour?
6 A. The taking of the detainees to perform certain labour jobs from
7 their place of detention was done under Branko Vlaco's authorisation, who
8 was the warden of the prison. He, in a certain way, gave his approval
9 for the detainees to be taken out. The detainees were forced to carry
10 out various jobs, mainly on the front-lines, which included the digging
11 of trenches, communication trenches, and other fortification features.
12 Such jobs carried out on the front-lines actually took part along the
13 lines of separation between the Serbian Army and the BH Army. The
14 majority of the detainees who carried out these jobs was virtually
15 exposed to fire from both sides. Many of the people who went to perform
16 this labour never returned. Some of them were killed and buried at the
17 local cemeteries either in Svrake or in the vicinity of the detention
19 Naturally, there were some jobs that were requested by the local
20 population, which involved working the fields. Then other units made
21 similar requests, such as the Rajlovac Brigade, Serbian Brigade. Then
22 there were jobs relating to the Ilijas Police Station, et cetera. For
23 the most parts, all these jobs were performed on the front-lines, where
24 the detainees were exposed to fire from both sides. Quite a few of them,
25 as I said, were killed while doing labour. Many were seriously wounded,
1 and some of those seriously wounded did not receive proper medical
2 assistance, which caused the injuries to heal in a very complicated way
3 and it took a long time.
4 Q. What, if any, psychological -- what was any psychological impact
5 on you from -- as a result of you being used as a human shield?
6 A. Of course, the very knowledge that you are between two fires
7 enhances your fear of what might happen. I, myself, was injured once
8 when I did the labour and I did not receive proper medical assistance,
9 and I had complications in my left hand all through the end of my
10 detention. Before the war, I was able to play guitar, but due to the
11 badly-treated wound, I am not able to do that any longer.
12 Q. And when you actually went to work on the front-lines, what did
13 you actually have to do?
14 A. Typically, we were digging trenches on the front-lines. On
15 several occasions when I was there, I was involved in the digging of
16 trenches, covering of the trenches. And once, before I escaped, I had a
17 feeling that they were preparing us to put us forth as a human shield,
18 because we were digging along the separation line facing Rajlovac and
19 Zuc. All this work mainly involved the digging of trenches, carrying of
20 ammunition and heavy weaponry, and providing their lines with materiel,
21 whether it be ammunition or the like.
22 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, that is all the questions that I
24 I seek to tender all of the associated exhibits; that is, the
25 exhibits listed in paragraph 88 of the statement and also the one listed
1 in paragraph 9 -- oh, sorry, 10.
2 JUDGE KWON: Many of them were the ones already admitted?
3 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes, Your Honour. There's seven exhibits --
4 eleven exhibits, because a few more came in through the recent witnesses.
5 So I seek to tender the remaining 65 ter documents listed in the final
6 notification which was filed on the 25th of February, 2011.
7 JUDGE KWON: Let's deal with them one by one, although it
8 makes --
9 MS. SUTHERLAND: Do you wish me to read out the 65 ter numbers?
10 JUDGE KWON: Could you read out one by one? Okay, yes.
11 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes. 01526.
12 JUDGE KWON: 01526.
13 MS. SUTHERLAND: Do you want me to describe each of them,
14 Your Honour? That's on page 3 of the final notification.
15 JUDGE KWON: Shall we deal with it after the break? I don't
16 think I'm in the position to deal with it, I think. I didn't bring the
17 last -- the notification, which seems to be a bit different from earlier
19 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes, Your Honour --
20 JUDGE KWON: I'll get back to you.
21 MS. SUTHERLAND: -- because the first notification had the two
22 tables, and they have now been made into one table in the final
24 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
25 JUDGE KWON: Okay. Let's deal with it.
1 Could you start again? 1526 --
2 MS. SUTHERLAND: 01526.
3 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
4 MS. SUTHERLAND: The second one is part of 65 ter number 15568.
5 It's a document dated the 20th of May.
6 JUDGE KWON: 15568?
7 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes, Your Honour. It's page 14 of 65 ter number
9 JUDGE KWON: Is it different from 15568A?
10 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes, Your Honour. It's the order of the
11 Crisis Staff headquarters of the Serbian Municipality of Vogosca, re:
12 obtaining permits to leave the municipality, and it's signed by
13 Commander Jovan Tintor.
14 JUDGE KWON: Yes, thank you, I found it. Yes.
15 MS. SUTHERLAND: The next one is 01542.
16 JUDGE KWON: Just going back to the previous one.
17 MS. SUTHERLAND: 01526 is an order signed by --
18 JUDGE KWON: No, 15568.
19 MS. SUTHERLAND: I'm sorry, Your Honour. Yes.
20 JUDGE KWON: I note that it's a document of 27 pages. Do you
21 tender them all?
22 MS. SUTHERLAND: No, Your Honour. That is -- the entirety of the
23 documents that this witness provided to the OTP in 2001. And from that
24 package of documents, there are certain of the documents that we seek to
25 admit today.
1 JUDGE KWON: Did you specify the page numbers of that document?
2 MS. SUTHERLAND: It's page 14 --
3 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
4 MS. SUTHERLAND: -- of the --
5 JUDGE KWON: Only page 14?
6 MS. SUTHERLAND: Of the English translation.
7 JUDGE KWON: All right, that will be --
8 MS. SUTHERLAND: So it's, in fact, the ERN is 0200-0627.
9 JUDGE KWON: Very well. And your next document?
10 MS. SUTHERLAND: The next one is 01542, the list of members of
11 Special Detachment.
12 JUDGE KWON: Yes. And then?
13 MS. SUTHERLAND: The next one is 11320.
14 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
15 MS. SUTHERLAND: The next one is 0 --
16 JUDGE KWON: I note that it's a duplicate of something else.
17 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes. It's also part of this bigger -- larger
18 exhibit that we were just talking about, 15568. So that is also a
20 JUDGE KWON: All right, very well. And the next one?
21 MS. SUTHERLAND: 01544.
22 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
23 MS. SUTHERLAND: The next one is 11204.
24 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
25 MS. SUTHERLAND: The next one is part of this 15568, and it's
1 page 16 of the English translation. And the ERN is 0200-0629.
2 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
3 MS. SUTHERLAND: The next one is 01572.
4 JUDGE KWON: This is also a portion of that --
5 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes, Your Honour. I wanted to list when it was
6 part of this -- that other exhibit to show that it was a document that
7 this witness had actually produced to the OTP.
8 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
9 MS. SUTHERLAND: And the next one is 14342.
10 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
11 MS. SUTHERLAND: The next one is 01584.
12 JUDGE KWON: 1584. Could you tell us what it is about? Yes, I
13 found it. Yes, I found it.
14 MS. SUTHERLAND: Oh, I'm sorry, Your Honour, that's P01605.
15 JUDGE KWON: Yes. That has been already admitted.
16 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes.
17 JUDGE KWON: Okay.
18 MS. SUTHERLAND: The next one is 01586.
19 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
20 MS. SUTHERLAND: Next, 01591.
21 JUDGE KWON: Without having that in numerical order, it's
22 terribly difficult. 1591.
23 MS. SUTHERLAND: It's dated --
24 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
25 MS. SUTHERLAND: -- the 21st of July, 1992.
1 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
2 MS. SUTHERLAND: It's about --
3 JUDGE KWON: Very well, yes. And the next one?
4 MS. SUTHERLAND: 01592.
5 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
6 MS. SUTHERLAND: Again dated the 21st of July. Next is 01594.
7 JUDGE KWON: Yes, which is also part of that previous exhibit.
8 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes.
9 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
10 MS. SUTHERLAND: 01598.
11 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
12 MS. SUTHERLAND: The next one was 01603, but that is P01606.
13 JUDGE KWON: Very well. That has been already admitted.
14 MS. SUTHERLAND: The next one on the list is a telex dated the
15 6th of August, and that is 01605, which is part of Exhibit P01142.
16 JUDGE KWON: Do we have to admit it?
17 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes, Your Honour. It's two documents. In the
18 exhibit index, it's dated the 10th of August, but, in fact, there's two
19 documents contained therein and dated the 6th of August and the 10th of
21 JUDGE KWON: You said this is part of the exhibit which we
22 already admitted?
23 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes, Your Honour.
24 JUDGE KWON: So why do we have to admit it again?
25 MS. SUTHERLAND: You don't. I'm sorry, I'm just going through
1 the notification. I'm sorry.
2 JUDGE KWON: Okay. Very well. We don't have to admit it. Yes.
3 MS. SUTHERLAND: Okay. The next one is 23097, and I seek leave
4 to add this exhibit. This document, this is --
5 JUDGE KWON: What did the witness say about this document in his
7 MS. SUTHERLAND: It appears from the document to be from the
8 Vogosca Serb Municipality to the Ministry of Justice. Before the war,
9 Ratko Babic worked as a judge in the Serb Municipal Court in Vogosca, and
10 during the war, he worked as an investigative judge. So the witness has
11 actually identified who it's being sent by.
12 JUDGE KWON: I think in order to tender this document, you may
13 put some questions to the witness. I don't think that -- para 88 is not
14 a sufficient basis to admit this as an indispensable and inseparable part
15 of his statement. I will allow you to put some questions after this
17 MS. SUTHERLAND: Okay.
18 JUDGE KWON: And the next one?
19 MS. SUTHERLAND: 01610.
20 JUDGE KWON: I think the same applies to this exercise as well.
21 You referred to para 88 of his statement?
22 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes, Your Honour.
23 JUDGE KWON: So could you put some questions on these documents.
24 Yes, and the next one?
25 MS. SUTHERLAND: But all of these documents that I'm taking you
1 to, Your Honour, are contained within paragraph 88.
2 JUDGE KWON: Yes, but --
3 MS. SUTHERLAND: So just in -- but these particular documents --
4 JUDGE KWON: 22, yes.
5 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes.
6 JUDGE KWON: Documents I'm fine with, I make no comments.
7 Please carry on, Ms. Sutherland.
8 MS. SUTHERLAND: The next one for admission is 01607.
9 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
10 MS. SUTHERLAND: 143 -- the next one is 14359.
11 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
12 MS. SUTHERLAND: The next one is 14358.
13 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
14 MS. SUTHERLAND: The next one is 01615.
15 JUDGE KWON: Yes. That has been already admitted as P2326.
16 MS. SUTHERLAND: I wasn't aware of that, Your Honour. Thank you.
17 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
18 MS. SUTHERLAND: The next one is -- the next one for admission is
20 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
21 MS. SUTHERLAND: The next is 18858. That's dated the 30th of
22 August, 1992. Vogosca Prison list of 139 prisoners appended to the daily
23 bulletin as at the 30th of August, 1992.
24 JUDGE KWON: Was that also admitted with the previous witness,
25 Exhibit 2357?
1 MS. SUTHERLAND: Mr. Reid will check. I did do this exercise
2 yesterday, Your Honour, so I may --
3 JUDGE KWON: Yes, the court deputy confirmed that. It has been
4 already admitted.
5 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes, Your Honour.
6 The next one is 14378.
7 JUDGE KWON: 14378, yes.
8 MS. SUTHERLAND: Next, 14357.
9 MR. ROBINSON: Excuse me, Mr. President.
10 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
11 MR. ROBINSON: If we could just go back to 14378.
12 Do you feel that the comment made --
13 JUDGE KWON: Oh, yes. That's true. He wasn't able to confirm on
14 the document or didn't offer any additional information. This may be the
15 kind of witness -- document you may ask some questions about.
16 Thank you, Mr. Robinson.
17 Yes. After 14357?
18 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, you already -- had no comment on
20 JUDGE KWON: Yes, that's fine.
21 MS. SUTHERLAND: So it's 14378 that I will --
22 JUDGE KWON: You need to put questions in order to tender it.
23 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes. And the next one is 14388.
24 JUDGE KWON: Yes. But do we have English translation up-loaded?
25 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
1 JUDGE KWON: We'll mark it -- shall we mark it for
3 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, I do have a translation, so there
4 must be one available. Mr. Reid is up-loading it as we speak.
5 JUDGE KWON: All right. With that understanding, we are fine
6 with it.
7 And the next, please.
8 MS. SUTHERLAND: 01622.
9 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
10 MS. SUTHERLAND: Next for admission is 012928.
11 JUDGE KWON: Could you repeat the number?
12 MS. SUTHERLAND: 12928. I'm sorry, my mistake.
13 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
14 MS. SUTHERLAND: 01625.
15 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
16 MS. SUTHERLAND: Next, 14375.
17 JUDGE KWON: 14375, yes.
18 MS. SUTHERLAND: Next, 1 -- sorry, 01635.
19 JUDGE KWON: I think that has been also admitted as
20 Exhibit P2307. Can we check it? Yes, I have a confirmation.
21 MS. SUTHERLAND: The next is 06677.
22 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
23 MS. SUTHERLAND: Next, 06679.
24 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
25 MS. SUTHERLAND: Next, 14387.
1 JUDGE KWON: Do you have the English translation for this?
2 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes, Your Honour.
3 JUDGE KWON: It hasn't been up-loaded. But with the
4 understanding it will be up-loaded --
5 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes.
6 JUDGE KWON: -- we'll admit it.
7 And next?
8 MS. SUTHERLAND: 01647.
9 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
10 MS. SUTHERLAND: 01653.
11 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
12 MS. SUTHERLAND: 14386.
13 JUDGE KWON: Could you check the English translation is
15 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes, Your Honour.
16 The next one is part of 15568, and that is page 22 of the English
17 translation, and the ERN is 0200-0634.
18 JUDGE KWON: And the 65 ter number, which is what?
19 MS. SUTHERLAND: 15568.
20 JUDGE KWON: I'm sorry, 155 --
21 MS. SUTHERLAND: That bundle of documents, Your Honour.
22 JUDGE KWON: Yes, we have dealt with it.
23 MS. SUTHERLAND: It's a list of 26 names --
24 JUDGE KWON: All right. Let's carry on.
25 MS. SUTHERLAND: -- in relation to the village of Nahorevo.
1 Mr. Reid informs me that is part of -- that is 15568J.
2 JUDGE KWON: My question was you said the next one is part of
3 15568, so my question is what 65 ter number are we dealing with?
4 MS. SUTHERLAND: The 65 ter number is 15568, that's the bundle of
5 27 pages, and then some of them have individual numbers, like this one,
6 which is 15568J.
7 JUDGE KWON: Yes, thank you. So now you're tendering 15568J?
8 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes, Your Honour.
9 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
10 MS. SUTHERLAND: And that's it, as far as the documents to be
11 admitted, Your Honour.
12 The photographs were admitted this morning, or they have recently
13 been admitted.
14 JUDGE KWON: So you're not tendering 14382?
15 MS. SUTHERLAND: That was the one that you asked me to put some
16 questions to the witness before you would rule.
17 JUDGE KWON: No. I said -- that's 65 ter number 14378. I don't
18 think we dealt with 14382.
19 MS. SUTHERLAND: Okay. Sorry, Your Honour. Yes, I seek to
20 tender that document.
21 JUDGE KWON: But I would like you to put some questions in
22 relation to that document --
23 MS. SUTHERLAND: Okay.
24 JUDGE KWON: -- if you are to tender that document.
25 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes.
1 JUDGE KWON: Have we dealt with 19133 or that we admitted --
2 MS. SUTHERLAND: This morning, yes.
3 JUDGE KWON: Yes. And 23096?
4 MS. SUTHERLAND: That was also admitted this morning.
5 JUDGE KWON: Okay, very well. Then we dealt with everything.
6 [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]
7 JUDGE KWON: There are further items, but I didn't -- which I
8 didn't mention, are the ones we have already admitted already. So please
9 deal with the witness -- you remember all the items? Yes.
10 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes, Your Honour. If we can deal with the last
11 one first --
12 JUDGE KWON: Microphone.
13 MS. SUTHERLAND: If we can deal with the last one first.
14 If I can have 65 ter number 14382.
15 Q. Mr. Muracevic, this is a request from the SJB Ilijas to the
16 manager of the Vogosca Prison for 10 prisoners to carry out tasks for the
17 SJB Ilijas on 12th-13th September 1992.
18 You stated in your statement that you don't recall the names of
19 any detainees who had to perform tasks for the SJB Ilijas, but did
20 detainees have to undertake tasks for the SJB Ilijas, even though you are
21 not able to recall the names of any persons that had to do that?
22 A. They did have to work for them, because many teams came to get
23 prisoners to do some work; inter alia, the representatives of the
24 Police Station Ilijas. That is to say that this is just one of the
25 documents that shows that the police station in Ilijas took inmates from
1 the camp to do some work there. I don't know what kind of work they did
2 for them, but the assumption is, in view of the date when this was
3 happening, it probably had something to do with certain combat activities
4 in the area of Ilijas, towards Ravno Nabosce [phoen].
5 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, I seek to tender this document.
6 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honour, that will be Exhibit P2386.
8 MS. SUTHERLAND: If I could have 65 ter number 14378 on the
9 screen, please.
10 Q. Mr. Muracevic, this is a request from the chief of the SJB
11 Vogosca to the manager of the Vogosca Prison for eight workers
12 (prisoners) to carry out tasks for the SJB Vogosca, dated the 1st of
13 September, 1992.
14 In your statement, at paragraph 88, you said that you can't
15 recall the names of any detainees who had to perform work for the SJB
16 Vogosca, but the same question again. Are you aware of people being
17 taken from the detention facilities to undertake work at the Vogosca SJB,
18 even though you're not aware of the names of the detainees?
19 A. I did know that representatives of the Serb police from Vogosca
20 took inmates away to do some work for them. As a matter of fact, during
21 one period of time, I, myself, was taken away by them, by the
22 representatives of this police station.
23 MS. SUTHERLAND: And that's contained in paragraph 34 of your
24 amalgamated witness statement, for the Chamber and the accused.
25 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. That will be admitted.
1 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P2384, Your Honours.
2 MS. SUTHERLAND: Now, the other two, Your Honour, the two
3 telegrams dated the 6th and 10th of August, 1992.
4 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
5 MS. SUTHERLAND: In order to take the witness to the first one,
6 dated the 6th of August, I need to bring up two other documents first.
7 If I could have Exhibit P01606.
8 Actually, Your Honour, I don't think the witness is going to be
9 able to go further than what's already in the statement, and I think that
10 we could put these -- submit these documents by way of a Bar Table --
11 part of a Bar Table motion.
12 JUDGE KWON: At a later stage?
13 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes.
14 JUDGE KWON: You're not tendering now?
15 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes, Your Honour.
16 JUDGE KWON: Very well.
17 MS. SUTHERLAND: Thank you.
18 Mr. Muracevic, I have no further questions for you.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
20 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Muracevic, you'll be cross-examined by
21 Mr. Radovan Karadzic.
22 Mr. Karadzic.
23 MR. ROBINSON: Excuse me, Mr. President.
24 Just before we do that, I just want to note for the record that
25 the Prosecution disclosed to us the fact that this witness had testified
1 in proceedings in Bosnia, for which we don't have his testimony yet.
2 We're hoping to receive that at some point, and those are proceedings
3 involving Momcilo Mandic, Mladen Milanovic, Sretko Damjanovic, and
4 Borislav Herjak [phoen]. So it's my understanding he testified in trials
5 of each of those persons, and we don't have the transcripts or the
6 recordings of those. I just want to make a note of that. Then if it
7 becomes necessary to ask for any relief, we'll do that in the future.
8 Thank you.
9 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Karadzic.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
11 Cross-examination by Mr. Karadzic:
12 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. Good afternoon, Mr. Muracevic.
14 A. Good afternoon, Mr. Karadzic.
15 Q. According to your statements, you worked in Svrake, as secretary
16 of the Local Commune, from 1981 until 1992; is that right?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. I have to ask you, and remind myself, to take -- to make small
19 pauses so that the interpreters can actually interpret what we are
21 Am I right when I say that before the system changed after the
22 elections in 1990, you worked as the secretary of the Local Commune?
23 A. Yes, that's right.
24 Q. At the time, were you a member of any political party?
25 A. Yes. I was a member of the League of Communists.
1 Q. Thank you. I'm pausing for the interpreters, just so that it
2 doesn't puzzle you in any way.
3 Did you then go on as a member of the party that was the
4 successor of the League of Communists?
5 A. Well, in 1990, as a member of the League of Communists, I held
6 the position of the secretary of the Municipal Conference of the
7 Socialist Alliance of the Working People in Vogosca. After that, I
8 was -- I became a member of the organisation that was called the Alliance
9 of the Reformist Forces. In Bosnia-Herzegovina, it was headed by
10 Nenad Kecmanovic.
11 Q. Thank you. In one of your statements, it says "SDP," so I
12 thought --
13 A. Well, the League of Communists. You know how that transformation
14 went. The SDP was -- well, I mean, I don't know how to put this. I was
15 a member of the League of Communists, and it was later transformed into
16 the SDP. But just before the outbreak of the conflict, I was a member of
17 the Alliance Of the Reformist Forces, headed by Mr. Nenad Kecmanovic.
18 Q. Thank you. You can also follow the transcript, and when the
19 transcript stops, that means that the interpreters managed to interpret
20 what we were saying.
21 Am I right if I say that in view of those 11 or 12 years, as
22 secretary of this local commune, you were one of the prominent citizens
23 in your village?
24 A. I don't know whether you can call it prominent. But as a man who
25 carried out this technical work for the Local Commune, I was a person who
1 everybody knew, and, in a way, I was involved in the organisation of life
2 in the territory of the Local Commune. I was carrying out different
3 activities related to the functioning of a village; right?
4 Q. Thank you. Did you note the formation of the SDA, the SDS, and
5 the HDZ before the elections in 1992 in your village?
6 A. I did note the formation of the SDS party and the SDA party in my
7 village. Other than the political parties that were active before - I'm
8 thinking of the League of Communists and the Socialist Alliance - there
9 were no other options before that.
10 Q. There weren't too many Croats there, so you didn't have the HDZ
11 there, did you?
12 A. Yes, that is correct. We didn't.
13 Q. Thank you. And can you please tell us who represented the SDA?
14 Who were in the party? Who was the SDA membership in your village?
15 A. It was mostly the local population of Muslim ethnicity, no one in
16 particular who was prominent in that party. It was mostly the local
18 Q. Are you trying to say that the more prominent Muslims stayed
19 faithful to the left-oriented parties, the SDP and the reformist parties,
20 or did any of them cross over to the SDA?
21 A. I don't think that many people crossed over into the SDA and the
22 SDS, although a number of people who were in these parties did transfer
23 to the SDS and the SDA.
24 Q. Thank you. In your consolidated statement, paragraph 3, you said
25 that the ethnic structure of the population was 1.240 total in the
1 village of Svrake; around 1.030 Bosniaks, 170 Serbs, 2 Croats, and 21 who
2 declared themselves as Yugoslavs, and 18 persons -- actually, 18 per cent
3 of other ethnicities. Who are these others? What did you think of?
4 A. Mostly the Roma, Albanians, and some others who declared
5 themselves as others and did not declare themselves as belonging to the
6 ethnic group that they belonged to. This is according to the ethnic --
7 to the census of 1991.
8 Q. So they did not declare themselves as being as any of the three
9 constituent peoples, Serbs, Croats, or Muslims; is that correct?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Am I correct that there were fewer Serbs than these others?
12 There was about 16 or 17 per cent of Serbs, and the others, there was
13 18 per cent of them?
14 A. There were just 170 Serbs. So when you make that comparison,
15 that's what it comes to, approximately, although the others, who declared
16 themselves as others and as Yugoslavs, there were also Bosniaks and Serbs
17 who did not declare themselves according to the ethnic definition or
19 Q. Thank you. I'm not sure if we were talking about persons or
21 A. I think it's persons, individuals, not percentages. 170 persons
22 of Serbian ethnicity lived in my local community.
23 Q. And that amounted to 17 per cent; is that correct?
24 A. I never made that calculation, but I assume that that is correct.
25 Q. Thank you. In other words, this was a predominantly Muslim
1 village, not to say exclusively Muslim; is that correct?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. In your statement, the consolidated statement, in paragraph 4 you
4 say -- I will have to read in English because we don't have a Serbian
6 [In English] "The residents of Serb ethnicity started visiting
7 neighbouring Serb villages more often, such as Semizovac, Krivoglavci,
8 Paljevo Brdo. This was during 1991 and more often during the first
9 months of 1992. It usually happened during the night, and during the day
10 they would return to their homes to feed the cattle. Since I was
11 secretary of the Local Commune, we organised our men of Bosniak ethnicity
12 to look after Serb houses so that there would not be any robberies."
13 [Interpretation] You did receive the translation. Is this your
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. And are you able to tell the Trial Chamber and the participants
17 why the Serbs spent nights in Serbian villages and not in Svrake, in
18 their own homes?
19 A. In the course of 1991, at your rallies devoted to organising the
20 plebiscite of the Serbian people, you had the habit of announcing the
21 following: that in the municipalities and areas that would be under the
22 control of the Serbs, you would ban the sale of properties to Muslims,
23 you would ban the construction of houses for Muslims in territories that
24 are under your control, and that any Muslim foundations that are built
25 will be blown up. This you had the habit of stating at your public
1 rallies before the plebiscite of the Serbian people.
2 Sometime in late 1991, you publicly threatened, from the Assembly
3 platform, that the Bosniak people would disappear if a conflict were to
4 break out. Perhaps all of that had an effect on the local people who had
5 some kind of instructions from representatives of the Serbian
6 Democratic Party that we were not aware of. And as good neighbours, a
7 place where inter-ethnic relations were good, it was strange to us why,
8 from time to time in 1991, they were more often going to Krivoglavci,
9 going to Paljevo, where some of them had weekend homes before. So, in a
10 way, we were afraid that some local criminals, perhaps, could rob one of
11 their houses. We were afraid that there would be an incident, and we
12 were also afraid that the Serbian population was trying to bring about an
14 I must say that in 1991 or early 1992, the majority population of
15 the Svrake Local Commune, which comprised of Muslims, did not cause a
16 single incident that would cause such behaviour on their part. There
17 wasn't even a single incident involving robbery of their property or
18 anybody threatening anybody's security. I think that the fact that they
19 kept leaving the settlements was pursuant to directions of the Serbian
20 Democratic Party, either the local branch, the local branch that had
21 links with the municipal organisation, which, in turn, was linked to the
22 republican organisation under you.
23 Q. Sir, are you trying to say that the Serbian people were so
24 obedient that they would go to sleep and spend the night in discomfort
25 upon recommendation of the Serbian Democratic Party? Is that so?
1 A. There was no other reason. There was no other reason. The
2 Muslim population did not give any single cause for something like that.
3 They had to have been listening to somebody. They didn't leave their
4 houses because somebody was telling them to leave or driving them out.
5 Even in conversations with them, we kept asking them not to go, but they
6 wouldn't listen.
7 Q. Thank you. Mr. Muracevic, where did you hear that I said
8 publicly that Muslims will not be able to build houses and settlements in
9 Serbian territory and that foundations would be blown up? Where did you
10 hear that?
11 A. In documents -- there is an audio-recording of such a statement.
12 I don't have it with me. There is an audio-recording of a statement of
13 yours, where you say that.
14 Q. And you studied those audio-recordings and documents of my
15 speeches at the meetings of my party; is that right?
16 A. Later, there was an opportunity to hear and to read all sorts of
17 things, as they say; of course, not prior to the conflict, but after the
19 Q. Ah-hah. And somebody showed you that after the war. Who was it
20 that showed that to you?
21 A. I had the opportunity to read that in a gazette or a bulletin of
22 the State Commission for Investigation of War Crimes.
23 Q. Ah-hah. So then we have to take into account that what you are
24 saying, you are not saying based on your own experience or what you went
25 through in the field, but based on your experiences while studying
1 documents about war crimes, as compiled by the state; is that correct?
2 A. In 1991, I didn't have the opportunity to hear these transcripts
3 and read them. I had the opportunity to read that after the war.
4 Q. And after you read that, can you please tell us, is it correct
5 that I conveyed, at a party Planum, what I told Mr. Izetbegovic in
6 response to his idea to move in four million Muslims from Turkey, and
7 that I told him, Yes, you can do that, but not to Serbian areas. You are
8 not going to artificially alter the ethnic compositions. Such
9 settlements will not be set up in the Serbian areas. I am interpreting
10 what I told privately to Izetbegovic, and I stated that at a closed
11 meeting. And you say that I said that. Is it the way I said it?
12 A. Well, it's your right to say whatever you will, but what you are
13 saying is something that I don't know. What I do know are the results of
14 what you, together with the local authorities and the local SDS in my
15 local community in my municipality, what you did.
16 For example, in the territory under the control of the Serbs in
17 the beginning of 1992, which is meaning that in a year -- in a territory
18 controlled by Serbian forces from Vogosca, 13.127 citizens were deported,
19 over 11.000 of whom were Bosniaks. This was in the territories that were
20 under your control from May 1992 until mid-June 1992 [as interpreted],
21 when the local Serbian authorities in Vogosca municipality made some kind
22 of census. You expelled 13.127 non-Serb inhabitants, including over
23 11.000 Bosniaks.
24 If this is what you were talking about with Mr. Izetbegovic
25 privately, or reached some kind of agreement about something, then all
1 right. But I am aware of what was happening in the territory that was
2 under your control.
3 JUDGE KWON: Just a second.
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I will wait, of course.
5 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Ms. Sutherland.
6 MS. SUTHERLAND: I'm sorry to interrupt, but I think that there
7 may have been an interpretation mistake. Page 71, line 1, "until
8 mid-June 1992." Mr. Karadzic may like to clarify with the witness
9 whether he means 1992 or 1993.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
11 I cannot see page 71. Something has stopped here on my screen.
12 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. But, Witness, sir --
14 JUDGE KWON: The public, common computer.
15 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation] Ah-hah.
16 Q. You say here at the beginning of this page that the Serbian
17 authorities, up until mid-June 1992, expelled 11.000 -- actually, 13.127
19 A. I'm sorry, I made an error. I'm talking about June 1993. It was
20 a slip of the tongue.
21 Q. Thank you. Witness, sir, are you saying this as someone that
22 you, yourself, saw, or are you talking about it based on what you read in
23 the material given to you by the State Commission for Investigation of
24 War Crimes?
25 A. I'm speaking partly from personal experience, because 1.036
1 Bosniaks from my village in that period left. None of them stayed. None
2 of the Bosniaks stayed behind in Tihovici, either, which was
3 predominantly populated by ethnic Muslims.
4 So this is information partially obtained during the war.
5 According to the documents, upon the integration of Vogosca as part of
6 the Bosnia-Herzegovina Federation, dealing with the Vogosca municipality,
7 a report by the Census Commission indicates how many citizens there were
8 in 1993 in territory controlled by Serbian forces. So from May 1992
9 until this census in June 1993, 13.127 non-Serb citizens were deported,
10 expelled, placed into camps from the territory under your control. This
11 included more than 11.000 Bosniaks, and the rest were people of other
12 ethnic groups and those who did not declare themselves as Yugoslavs.
13 Q. Sir, Mr. Muracevic, is my information that you are a poet
15 A. Well, you could say, amongst other things, that I do write poetry
16 as well, yes.
17 Q. Thank you. I think that all people are honourable, and
18 particularly poets. And, of course, you also gave your solemn oath here.
19 So may I ask you this: You are not here as an expert of the Bosniak
20 government; you are talking about things that you know reliably. Thank
21 God you know a lot, and, unfortunately, you went through a lot of these
22 things yourself. So because there are so many of these things, why would
23 you also need to look at material that the Government of Bosnia and
24 Herzegovina gave you to look at? Were you coached, and who coached you
25 for this testimony?
1 A. Sorry, the government or anybody else [as interpreted] gave me
2 any kind of documents to prepare myself for this testimony.
3 After 23rd of February, 1996, when we returned to the part of the
4 Serb-controlled Vogosca, I found certain documents in the municipality
5 where I used to work. Among other documents, the documents that we see
6 today here are there. So nobody gave them to me. This is what I found
7 inside the municipal building, in schools, in the Kontiki Bed and
8 Breakfast, in the vicinity of the bunker camp, et cetera.
9 So we are talking about the documents that I personally
10 collected. We are not talking about any documents given to me by the
11 government or anybody else in order to coach me for giving evidence here.
12 Q. Witness, you were able to see what happened about 1.000
13 inhabitants of your village. You couldn't know what happened to about
14 13.000 people, so let us just confine ourselves to the things that you
15 personally saw or experienced yourself.
16 JUDGE KWON: Let us clarify with the transcript again.
17 Did you say, Mr. Muracevic, that government or anybody else gave
18 you any kind of documents to prepare yourself for this testimony? It's
19 line 5 and 6 of page 73.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The government did not give me any
21 kind of documents in order to prepare myself. However, the documents
22 that I personally collected were placed at the disposal of various
24 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Just one second, please. I
1 apologise, Mr. Karadzic. Since you asked me and the President took the
2 floor, I failed to give you an answer.
3 In the area of Vogosca municipality, I stayed in the camps until
4 the 5th December 1992. Therefore, I had an opportunity to see and hear
5 what was happening in the area that you controlled in Vogosca, meaning
6 not in my village alone, but in the whole area of Vogosca under the
7 Serbian control.
8 During my detention at various camps, occasionally other people
9 would be brought in, coming from other parts of Vogosca municipality, who
10 then gave me accounts of what was happening in their respective areas.
11 Now, if we talk about the number of people expelled from the territory
12 under your control, this is something that I have personal knowledge
14 Q. Thank you. I will be grateful to you, and I believe that goes
15 for other participants as well. If you present all of this that you saw
16 yourself, and I'm wondering if what you say -- saw yourself. A minute
17 ago, you gave us a precise number, 13.127, which is the figure that you
18 saw in the papers produced by the Commission for the Investigation of War
19 Crimes. Did you, yourself, acquire this information or did someone
20 provide you with it?
21 A. Mr. Karadzic, it is not true that these documents were given to
22 me by representatives of the government. That's the document that I
23 personally found in the municipal building in Vogosca, left behind by the
25 As for my personal knowledge about the expulsion of the
1 population, I just made a comparison between the two and the document
2 from 1991, and we reached the figure that I mentioned. So I'm talking
3 about the document that was left behind by the Serbs after the 23rd of
4 February, 1996, when this area became an integral part of the Federation
5 of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
6 Q. Are you trying to say that on the premises where the Serbian
7 authorities had been, you found a document produced by a Muslim
8 commission for investigation of war crimes, even before the document was
9 compiled, because it hadn't been compiled before February 1996.
10 Therefore, Mr. Muracevic, I am calling upon you as an honourable poet and
11 man to tell us the truth.
12 A. Mr. Karadzic, you are not speaking the truth. I found this
13 document after February 1996 on the premises that prior to that had been
14 controlled by the Serbian side. So nobody gave me that document. I
15 found it personally in the municipal building of Vogosca.
16 Q. Is that a document of the Muslim or Bosnian Government or is it a
17 document produced by the Serbian authorities?
18 A. This is a document produced by the Serbian authorities, not the
19 Bosnian Government.
20 Q. Can you show us this document?
21 A. Sir, I'll try.
22 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Ms. Sutherland.
23 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, I do have the two documents the
24 witness is referring to.
25 I think Mr. Karadzic is confusing the witness somewhat.
1 Mr. Karadzic was given a proofing note the other day which said that
2 there was a Serbian document that was found in the municipal building,
3 and he was also given a document which states in the proofing note that
4 it was authored by the witness, which has the figure of 13.157.
5 So these are the two documents that the witness is referring to.
6 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Ms. Sutherland.
7 MS. SUTHERLAND: That could go on the ELMO, perhaps.
8 JUDGE KWON: Do you like to see that document now, Mr. Karadzic?
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Now I know which document is being
10 spoken about by Ms. Sutherland. But the witness spoke about the document
11 produced by the Commission for Investigation of Crimes. This is not the
12 one. That was the kind of interim census that was carried out in the
13 course of the war. I am interested in the document that the witness
14 received from the Commission for Investigation of War Crimes. And if my
15 LiveNote was in order, I would have given you the exact page and line.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. Karadzic, you're not talking
17 truthfully about what we are discussing. I never said that I received
18 this document from the Commission for Investigation of War Crimes.
19 Instead, I found it in the municipal building, upon my arrival on the
20 23rd of February, 1996, to the territory that had been under the Serb
21 control. Therefore, it is not true that anyone from the Commission for
22 Investigation of Crimes gave me this document, or anyone from the state
23 authorities, for that matter.
24 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. When I asked you how you knew that, didn't you, yourself, mention
1 the Commission for Investigation of Crimes?
2 A. I gave you that answer in relation to your public appearance with
3 regard to the plebiscite in 1993.
4 Q. Who gave you those documents?
5 A. The ones referring to the plebiscite, is that what you mean, the
6 1991 plebiscite? Your question is not clear.
7 Q. Who gave you the documents produced by the Commission for
8 Investigation of Crimes that you mentioned here?
9 A. Nobody gave them to me. I said that I read that in a bulletin of
10 that commission, and part of those speeches were published in the media;
11 specifically, in "Oslobodjenje" newspaper, where reference was made to
12 your statements given during the plebiscite. So nobody gave me that
13 personally. I rather had an opportunity to read it in a public document.
14 Q. With all due respect, Witness, you said here that I said in a
15 public speech, which is something that I actually said in a closed
16 meeting of my party, and that was an interpretation of what I had
17 discussed with Mr. Izetbegovic in private.
18 Now, who gave you the documents that were not in the public
20 A. There is no such document. I just quoted part of the speech that
21 you delivered before the 1991 plebiscite. There were broader statements
22 carried in the media, and there were lots of things that you said apart
23 from what I wanted, so in the bulletin of the State Commission for
24 Investigation of Crimes, part of it was published in "Oslobodjenje."
25 Unfortunately, I don't have the copy of that newspaper with me here.
1 Q. Just one more question. What you're talking about now, did you
2 know all of that in 1992?
3 A. Well, I knew some things, because your fiery speeches at the SDS
4 rally were intended to awaken the national consciousness of Serbs.
5 Perhaps you did not directly instigate certain things, but you used to
6 express yourselves in a poetic way, as you did, and that provoked a
7 certain reaction.
8 Q. Witness, I would like to get an answer from you, because you
9 didn't know anything about what you cited from that meeting because that
10 wasn't published, and you didn't know that in 1992. Are you trying to
11 say that the Serbian peasants knew about that in 1992, or is it that they
12 went to spend the nights in the Serbian villages because they were afraid
13 of what might happen to them?
14 A. I believe that members of the Serbian population could have known
15 that, because they regularly attended various rallies and meetings of
16 yours, where you gave a variety of speeches, and that applied to my
17 fellow villagers. I don't know whether they went to this particular
18 meeting that had to do with the preparation for a plebiscite, but they
19 did attend the meetings that you held.
20 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Is it the time for a break?
21 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
22 Very well. We'll have a break for 30 minutes and resume at three
23 minutes past 1.00.
24 --- Recess taken at 12.33 p.m.
25 --- On resuming at 1.04 p.m.
1 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Karadzic, please continue.
2 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
3 Q. Mr. Muracevic, in early March you sent your family to Germany; is
4 that correct?
5 A. No, I did not send my family to Germany in early March, but
6 rather my family, that is to say, my wife and my children, on the day
7 when our village was attacked, went to pay a visit to my wife's mother.
8 And then from there, during the war, they left for Germany and joined my
9 brother there, who had been working there for quite a number of years.
10 Q. Well, I am now confused, Mr. Muracevic. It says here, in
11 paragraph 2 of your amalgamated statement:
12 [In English] "My wife and children left B and H in March 1992,
13 and returned in 1996, after the war."
14 [Interpretation] And you said a similar thing in one of the
15 interviews that you had with the Prosecution in 1996, immediately before
16 your family returned.
17 A. My family left my village in May 1992. On the 2nd of May, to be
19 Q. Why did you then say here that they left in March?
20 A. I can't now compare and explain various statements that I made.
21 I don't know why it says "March," but I know that they left the village
22 on the day when the village was attacked, and they went to Visoko to join
23 my wife's mother.
24 Q. And when did they leave Bosnia-Herzegovina?
25 A. In the course of 1992. I didn't know exactly. They lived in
1 Visoko with my mother-in-law for a certain period of time, then they
2 moved to my sister's place in Zenica, and then they established contact
3 with my brother in Germany, and eventually they left for Germany in 1992.
4 Q. Which month?
5 A. I didn't know that at the time, but I think it was towards the
6 end of 1992.
7 Q. When did you find out when they left?
8 A. I spoke with my family for the first time in 1993, after I
9 escaped from the camp. So I spoke to them for the first time on that
10 occasion, and that is when I found out that they were practically living
11 with my brother in Germany.
12 Q. But after your escape, one day after your escape, you told the
13 Muslim authorities that your family was at Visoko?
14 A. At the time when I escaped, I knew that they were in Visoko, but
15 I didn't know that they had already left Bosnia and Herzegovina. At that
16 moment when I gave them this statement, I was not aware of the fact that
17 they had left Bosnia-Herzegovina, which is something that I learned only
18 in 1993; that is to say, that they were not living in Bosnia any longer.
19 Q. But after 1993, you knew when they left. Why did you maintain
20 your claim that they left in March?
21 A. It must have been a misprint. I have always claimed that they
22 left in May, so it's probably a misprint.
23 Q. You say that you organised night guards to protect the Serbian
24 houses in your village?
25 A. Yes. Alongside the local police and the population, we made an
1 effort towards protecting these houses from being looted by criminals or
2 preventing any incidents happening that might cause the Serbs to say that
3 their property was under attack.
4 Q. It's not clear to me, Mr. Muracevic. And in spite of the guards
5 and this protection, the Serbs preferred to go to spend nights in other
6 villages. Wasn't everything that you did enough to make them feel safe?
7 I think maybe it was just the contrary. That is what made them go out
8 and sleep elsewhere.
9 A. I don't think that you are describing the situation correctly. I
10 even think that Serbs had certain instructions about the attack on our
11 village by the Serbs, even before the 2nd of May, when the village was
12 attacked. Probably due to this kind of information, they decided to
13 leave the village in order to avoid becoming a target of their own units.
14 Q. I understand that you were thinking, because, as they say,
15 everyone has a back and everyone has a thought in his mind, but, I mean,
16 do not tell us what you think. Tell us what you know.
17 A. They started leaving our village towards the end of 1991.
18 Immediately after the multi-party elections, people felt in my village
19 that inter-ethnic relations were being disrupted. It was particularly
20 due to the influence of the neighbouring village of Krivoglavci, where
21 215 citizens of Serb ethnicity, in relation to the municipality of
22 Vogosca, where there were representatives of Bosniaks, Serbs, and Croats,
23 they sent a petition, actually, to this Vogosca Municipal Assembly to ask
24 for banning the sale of Serb houses to Muslims and to prohibit Muslims
25 from building houses in that village. So all of that, in a way, affected
1 their behaviour in our village. Towards the end, in 1991, they started
2 leaving, and in 1992, it was practically an everyday occurrence.
3 In view of everything that happened at the beginning of May, it
4 probably indicates what -- that they knew what would happen to my village
5 even before the village was actually attacked.
6 Q. Six months before that?
7 A. Well, yes. Yes, precisely in that period.
8 Q. This petition, did you bring the OTP this petition not to have
9 farms and property sold to Muslims?
10 A. I haven't brought it, but it's a public document. You can find
11 it in the archives of the municipality. I didn't bring that, and I
12 didn't attach it to my documents, but that is a fact, and it can easily
13 be found in the archives of the municipality of Vogosca.
14 Q. Am I right, Mr. Muracevic, if I say that you gave at least 10
15 statements and other forms of testimony?
16 A. Well, it could be put that way.
17 Q. How many -- in how many statements and testimonies did you
18 mention that petition?
19 A. Several, a few, possibly. I cannot say that with any degree of
20 certainty now.
21 Q. Well, we are going to ask the distinguished Ms. Sutherland to
22 save the day for us, because I have not found that in a single one of
23 your statements or in a single one of the testimonies you provided. This
24 is the first I hear of it. What do you say to that?
25 A. I cannot say anything for sure. I mean, I know how many
1 statements you have there at your disposal, but I just mentioned this
2 petition. I mean, I didn't attach it here.
3 So it is a fact that at one of the first sessions after the
4 multi-party elections, one of the first sessions of the Municipal
5 Assembly, where the SDS participated as well, this kind of document was
6 received, and that can be found in the municipal archives.
7 Q. Thank you. This is a first-rate document. If it exists, we
8 certainly need it. If it does not exist, then, Mr. Muracevic, your
9 statement and your testimony that you are providing just now look quite
10 different, don't they?
11 A. The document does exist, and we shall do our best to have it
12 provided to you.
13 Q. Thank you. You said, in paragraph 8 of your statement, your
14 amalgamated statement, that after the referendum, incidents started
15 occurring, the Public Security Station was split up on an ethnic basis,
16 roadblocks were set up, et cetera. Are you linking these roadblocks to
17 the referendum?
18 A. Well, for the most part, these barricades/roadblocks have to do
19 with the referendum on the independence of Bosnia-Herzegovina. Sorry,
20 although there were some barricades - perhaps I can call them that - but
21 there were some check-points at the entrance to certain villages that
22 were primarily Serb populated. They existed before, too. But if we're
23 talking about barricades and roadblocks, we basically link them to the
24 period around the referendum.
25 Q. And what you said about before the referendum, could you please
1 give us specific information and proof to that effect?
2 But you did mention that these barricades had something to do
3 with developments related to the referendum. What particular
4 developments are you referring to?
5 A. Well, on the 29th of February and the 1st of March, 1992, there
6 was a referendum that had to do with citizens stating their views on the
7 independence of Bosnia-Herzegovina. Already during the night of the 29th
8 of February, things started happening. In Krivoglavci, which is a
9 village near the Vogosca fly-over, there was shooting, so the balloting
10 station had to be closed there.
11 On the 1st of March, 1992, the local population of Serb ethnicity
12 got an enormous quantity of weapons out of the Semizovac Barracks. This
13 was weaponry of the Territorial Defence that was actually stored at the
14 Semizovac Barracks, and all of this was taken to Krivoglavci,
15 Kotorovici [phoen], above Simovac, and other places that were populated
16 by Serbs.
17 After the 2nd of March, the roadblocks cropped up all over town.
18 Q. Mr. Muracevic, are you trying to say that the Serbs were
19 hindering that referendum, obstructing it?
20 A. In Blagovac and other areas, yes. As a matter of fact, the
21 Local Commune of Blagovac did not allow a balloting station to be placed
22 in Blagovac because one of the voting stations had to be moved to the
23 university in Vogosca. And as for Krivoglavci, since the referendum went
24 on for two days, the polling station in Krivoglavci had to be closed down
25 because of the provocations of the Serbs. There was shooting and so on.
1 Q. Mr. Muracevic, do you know that we received compliments from the
2 United Nations and the European Union because we made it possible for
3 Muslims and Croats to vote? In Serb-populated villages and towns, there
4 weren't balloting stations because the Serbs did not want to vote; isn't
5 that right?
6 A. Well, that is not right. I don't know about these compliments.
7 But as for the question of voting in Krivoglavci and Blagovac, that could
8 not be linked to those compliments, because the voting was actually
9 obstructed in those places. Also, there were some Serbs who voted at
10 that referendum. Specifically in my Local Commune of Svrake, there were
11 Serbs who came to vote.
12 Q. And why was this not carried by the press? That is close to
14 A. Well, you're not telling the truth or you didn't read the local
15 newspapers, especially in relation to these incidents in Krivoglavci, at
16 the polling station there. That was reported in the press. As a matter
17 of fact, during the night between the first and second day of the
18 referendum in Krivoglavci, the Serb population even attacked a police car
19 in which there were three policemen of different ethnic backgrounds.
20 There were even Serbs among them. It was riddled with bullets from
21 rifles, because during the night -- between the first and second night in
22 Krivoglavci, there was some shooting, and in this way pressure was
23 brought to bear on the Adrovic family, and also the next day the police
24 patrol intervened and was attacked by the Serb population -- the local
25 Serb population. This patrol managed to leave through my village. So
1 from Krivoglavci, they escaped to Svrake, and from Svrake, they managed
2 to get to Vogosca.
3 Q. What is this? Is this a unit or is it villagers from
5 A. I cannot say whether it's a unit or whether it's the villagers,
6 but the local population, that most probably had weapons. Well, I didn't
7 really testify about this incident, but I was a witness when this police
8 patrol got out of Krivoglavci and came to Svrake. I personally went with
9 them to the police station in Vogosca in order to get there, because they
10 were so scared by everything that was going on because of this gun-fire
11 that had been opened at them, at policemen.
12 Q. All right. Why are you and I beating about the bush? Why are we
13 not talking about the main thing that happened; that is to say, the
14 roadblocks? Why are we avoiding that? Is it not true that the
15 barricades were put up because a member of a Serb wedding party was
16 killed near Bascarsija?
17 A. I cannot say anything about that. I wasn't the organiser of
18 these roadblocks or barricades, so I cannot speak about that. At any
19 rate, it did happen during that period of time. But I cannot testify
20 that that was the reason, the killing of the member of the Serb wedding
21 party there or the referendum, because I had nothing to do with that.
22 Q. So you cannot say that it was the referendum that was the reason
23 for that? You've just said so.
24 A. Well, all of that has to do with these situations. It has to do
25 with this period of time. Now, what the real cause was, you probably
1 know that because you organised it.
2 Q. In paragraph 8, you say that in addition to these barricades and
3 all of that, the Public Security Station was split up on an ethnic basis;
4 isn't that right? Do you remember that or do you want me to read it out?
5 A. Well, sometime in March, there was this division of the police
6 force along ethnic lines, so, yes, yes, that it happened, the police
7 station was split up on an ethnic basis, yes.
8 Q. Thank you. Did Muslims erect roadblocks at the same time?
9 A. No, not at the same time. It was only after -- afterwards, when
10 the Muslim population saw these barricades that were erected by the
11 Serbs. Then for a short period of time, barricades were placed in
12 certain neighbourhoods, but very soon they were removed and no longer
14 After these barricades that were put up in March, Serbs were
15 placing barricades, roadblocks, at check-points, and they continued to
16 check vehicles and people passing there. So they did keep these
17 check-points under their control.
18 Q. Are you trying to say that the barricades were not lifted already
19 on the 3rd of March throughout Sarajevo?
20 A. No, no, no, they were lifted by the Serb Democratic Party
21 throughout Sarajevo.
22 Q. Are you trying to say that they were not removed on the 3rd of
23 March, the barricades? What you said about the Serb Democratic Party,
24 you would have to prove that, Mr. Muracevic, and please stick to what you
25 know, please.
1 A. The representatives of Serbs who put up barricades that had to do
2 with the 2nd of March, I mean, the roadblocks, themselves, were removed.
3 But in most places in the municipality of Vogosca where these roadblocks
4 did exist, there were still physical checks that were carried out by
5 representatives of the Serb police and the Serb forces. They were
6 checking vehicles and also the movement of people in and out of various
8 Q. Let us see what you say in paragraph 8:
9 [In English] "After that, Vogosca Public Security Station
10 employees split up on ethnic basis. Muslim and Croat policemen moved to
11 the village of Svrake and set up a police station and a check-point along
12 the Sarajevo-Zenica main road, in the village of Svrake."
13 [Interpretation] Who placed these check-points, according to
14 paragraph 8 of your statement?
15 A. Well, part of the local population, part of the police force, and
16 part of the Territorial Defence; right? Well, around us, Serb forces had
17 placed their check-points all over, so this was a way of protecting our
19 Q. So it's Muslims and Croats, as this paragraph says; right?
20 A. Well, Muslims, for the most part.
21 Q. And then in that way, the road leading to Zenica was obstructed,
22 or rather one had to pass through that check-point; right?
23 A. No. The Sarajevo-Zenica road was not stopped in any way.
24 Vehicles of the JNA and all other vehicles could just pass both ways.
25 That is to say that the JNA passed there.
1 Q. Thank you. Was there such a check-point at Kobilja Glava as
3 A. I think so. So in response to the barricades erected by the
4 Serbs, counter-check-points were erected in areas where the Muslims were
5 a majority; specifically, Kobilja Glava, Barice, Svrake.
6 Q. These are predominantly Muslim neighbourhoods; right?
7 A. Well, for the most part, most of the population was Muslim.
8 Q. In paragraph 9, you say that:
9 "Serbs held the top positions in the overall system at that time,
10 in terms of military, politics, economy, education, simply everything."
11 You say "simply everything." Do you stand by that assertion?
12 A. I do. In my municipality, in all key positions, regardless of
13 whether it had to do with the municipality, the police, schools, any
14 other public institutions, even the barracks in Semizovci, it was the
15 Serbs who held all of these top positions. I can also testify to that
16 because I was secretary of the Municipal Conference of the Socialist
17 Alliance of the Working People at the time just before the referendum or,
18 rather, the multi-party elections in 1990, and I, therefore, had an
19 opportunity of seeing this; that is to say, what the personnel situation
20 was in the municipality of Vogosca.
21 Just before the multi-party elections, when the term of office
22 would expire of, say, the president of the municipality, or the head of
23 the League of Communists in the municipality, or the principals of
24 various schools, and so on and so forth, instead of agreeing on what the
25 ethnic structure would be, in accordance with the number of inhabitants
1 from different ethnic groups, most of these office-holders had their
2 terms extended. So there was no ethnic balance in these top positions.
3 It was primarily Serbs who remained in all these positions of top
5 Q. Mr. Muracevic, is the municipality of Vogosca an integral part of
6 the city of Sarajevo?
7 A. At that time, yes, it was an integral part of Sarajevo.
8 Q. Are you trying to say that in the town of Sarajevo in the
9 Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Serb national community was
10 dominant, holding all the levers of power?
11 A. Based on what I could see in my municipality and in all other
12 parts, mostly, all the significant posts, for the most part, were held by
13 the Serbs.
14 Q. And do you know who Alija Delimustafic was?
15 A. Yes, I do.
16 Q. Was he a Muslim, and was he a member -- a minister of internal
18 A. Yes, he was a Muslim and minister of internal affairs.
19 Q. Was Avdo Hebib a Muslim, and was he his police deputy?
20 A. First of all, you want me to testify about the structure of the
21 town, of Bosnia and Herzegovina. I was subjected to certain torture in
22 the municipality of Vogosca, primarily in the settlement of Svrake, so I
23 would like to speak about those positions. When I said in my statement
24 that all the key positions were held by Serbs, what I mainly meant was
25 the municipality of Vogosca and in the territory where I lived at the
2 Q. And was the president of the municipality in Vogosca a Muslim?
3 A. After the multi-party elections, the president of the
4 municipality, after God knows how many years, was finally a Muslim.
5 I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of Muslims who were
6 appointed to such high-ranking positions.
7 Q. What about the chief of the Public Security Station and the
8 number-one person in Internal Affairs; was that a Muslim?
9 A. At one point, it was. But as soon as the multi-party elections
10 were held, then again the post went to a Serb.
11 Q. What about Vehid Hodzic; is he a Serb?
12 A. No, no, Vehid Hodzic was one of the Muslims who was appointed at
13 the head of the police. Before that, no Muslim was at the head of a
14 police station. After the multi-party elections -- after the
15 multi-ethnic elections in 1990, there was a kind of balancing carried out
16 to a degree to have the president of the municipality post given to a
17 Muslim. The police head was given to a Muslim. I was also talking about
18 the situation before that.
19 Q. All right. But at the time when the crisis erupted in Vogosca,
20 which is what we're talking about, are you saying that the Serbs held all
21 the main levers of power in the municipality of Vogosca, in the city of
22 Sarajevo, and in Bosnia and Herzegovina? But let's stand -- let's stay
23 with Vogosca.
24 A. The president of the Vogosca municipality who presided over the
25 legislative body where half of the membership was Muslim, but the head of
1 the Executive Board was a Muslim, and that is practically the executive
3 Q. Mr. Muracevic, do you remember that only as of recently the
4 executive authority became more important, but at that time the
5 number-one person would be the president of the municipality?
6 A. Well, that may sound like that, but executive power, after all,
7 is executive power. The president of the municipality, at least as far
8 as this first person who was elected after the multi-party elections, was
9 not really asked about much.
10 Q. All right. We will come to this in more detail later.
11 You are probably familiar with the directives -- I will wait.
12 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Ms. Sutherland.
13 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, I'm not sure if there's -- the
14 witness has misspoken or -- it's page 92, lines 2, 3, and 4, when he was
15 saying who the president of the Vogosca municipality was, and then who
16 was the head of the executive board, what ethnicities they were.
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] We heard that from previous
19 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation].
20 Q. But perhaps we can confirm that, that the president of the
21 municipality was a Muslim and the president of the Executive Board was a
23 A. Yes, that is correct.
24 Q. And in that system, was the president of the municipality
25 superior to the president of the Executive Board; is that right?
1 A. In a way, the president of the Executive Board was not above the
2 president of the municipality, but practically it was the other way
4 Q. Practically, the Muslim president of the municipality was a
5 superior to the president of the Executive Board?
6 A. Well, the way the situation was at the time, the Executive Board
7 was taken much more into account. The president of the municipality was
8 the one who would convene all the different positions and ask people to
9 do what was needed, but the Executive Board president already had his own
10 body, and within that body they could implement certain decisions without
11 needing to resort to any outside bodies. As soon as that body was
12 convened, the president of the Executive Board could implement decisions
13 until the next Assembly was convened or until somebody drew his attention
14 to the fact that perhaps he wasn't doing his job properly. But on paper,
15 the president of the municipality was the number-one post and a superior
16 in relation to the Executive Board.
17 Q. What about the Executive Board? Was the Executive Board
18 president able to act outside of the Secretariat or did they act under
19 the auspices of the Secretariat, and did his cabinet consist of a
21 A. Well, I really cannot go into the composition of the actual
22 cabinet, but the president of the Executive Board was asked about
23 everything. I don't know if he consulted with members of his cabinet.
24 I'm thinking about other members of the Secretariat. This not something
25 that I can talk much about, because I'm not really that knowledgeable
1 about the details, how the meetings were conducted and how he executed
2 his duties as the president of the Executive Board.
3 Q. Mr. Muracevic, you were a president -- you were a part of the
4 system. You were the secretary of the Local Commune. Is it correct that
5 the municipal government comprises the Secretariat and that the cabinet
6 is comprised of secretaries; is that correct?
7 A. Yes, for the most part, that's how it should have been.
8 Q. Do you know that the main secretarial functions in the
9 Executive Board of Vogosca were held by Muslims?
10 A. Look, my previous statement, which talks about the relationships
11 which preceded all of this that happened, what I spoke about what, up to
12 1990, was the situation up to the multi-party elections, when all key
13 functions were held by Serbs, this is what I talked about. After the
14 multi-party elections, there was a certain balance achieved in the
15 execution of these functions, but practically this was not something that
16 functioned. It didn't function properly, because representatives of the
17 Executive Board, Serbs mostly, reached agreement with the president of
18 the Executive Board, and those members did not, in turn, consult much
19 with the members of the Executive Board who were Muslims. Mostly, they
20 implemented the positions that they felt should be implemented.
21 Q. But you didn't attend those meetings, and that is your
23 A. Yes, that is my impression. So I didn't really want to go into a
24 debate about the work of that government, but the impression was that
25 mostly representatives in the Executive Board who were Serbs consulted
1 more with the president of the Executive Board and implemented those
2 positions they saw fit, and to a lesser degree did they consult with
3 members of the Executive Board who were from the Muslim ethnic group.
4 Q. Well, we're dealing with the Executive Board now, but you don't
5 know that. You didn't attend the meeting, so you don't know that. Do
6 you know that the main Secretariats were in the hands of the Muslims?
7 A. Yes, but this is what I'm telling you: The policies implemented
8 by the Executive Board did not correspond to what was established at
9 meetings of the Municipal Assembly, and what should have been established
10 and ascertained at the meetings of the Executive Board. It actually took
11 a completely different course that was to the advantage of the Serbs, in
12 a certain way.
13 Q. Mr. Muracevic, earlier on you said that the president of the
14 Executive Board cannot act in any other way other than through the
15 Secretariat, so how do you explain this impression of yours that
16 something was done when the president of the Executive Board does not
17 have the power, other than what is implied in the power of the
18 secretariats or the secretaries?
19 A. Let me explain what that means.
20 In a certain period, my local commune, in order to implement a
21 specific project, should have received 200.000 dinars at the time. I
22 don't know the value. And then, at the proposal of the Executive Board,
23 it was said that only 100.000 dinars was awarded in order to implement
24 that project. So now there is the question: If it was agreed that it
25 would be given 200.000 dinars, why did the president of the government
1 then only give us 100.000? So based on things like this, one would gain
2 the impression that the president of the Executive Board did not care
3 much for the opinion of his colleagues in the Executive Board who
4 happened to be Muslims.
5 Q. Thank you, Mr. Muracevic. By that analogy, in each government in
6 Europe, the Serbs would be in charge, because all governments function
7 like that; they promise you something, and then they give you a half of
9 But, anyway, is it true that the war began in your area on the
10 2nd of May?
11 A. The attack was carried out or began on the 2nd of May, 1992.
12 Q. Thank you. And you in your statement you said that:
13 "The war in our area began on the 2nd of May."
14 Is that correct?
15 A. Yes. For me specifically and for my Local Commune, it began on
16 the 2nd of May, although the given is that the war in Bosnia and
17 Herzegovina began a bit earlier, didn't it? Already, shells were falling
18 before the 2nd of May, launched by Serbian forces.
19 Q. Well, let's just leave aside the things that you don't know. We
20 have a list of the expended ammunition daily, as it pertains to Sarajevo.
21 A. It's not that I didn't know that shells were falling on Sarajevo.
22 You could hear detonations in Vogosca as well. The detonations of shells
23 dropping on Sarajevo could be heard in Vogosca and also in the place
24 where I was living; namely, Svrake. So you cannot say that I didn't know
25 that shells were hitting Sarajevo before the 2nd of May.
1 Q. Thank you. All right. So how do you explain that from the 6th
2 of April, when war broke out in Sarajevo, until the 2nd of May, there was
3 no war where you were?
4 A. How do I think that possible? My village, before the 2nd of May,
5 was completely encircled. From the beginning of 1992, it was literally
6 encircled by Serbian forces that were around the village, and that they
7 had armed guards, trenches. And then from the March barricades on,
8 literally, the village found it difficult to bring in food into the shops
9 that were still working. Very often, citizens were inspected at these
10 check-points. At some check-points, even cars were confiscated from our
12 Q. In another place, Mr. Muracevic, you said that events further
13 away from Svrake were responsible for the shortages of food, and it's not
14 the way you are telling it today.
15 A. No, it's not true that I said that it had to do with events
16 farther than Svrake.
17 From the beginning, from 1992, my village was completely blocked
18 by Serbian forces, which literally monitored the entrance of each
19 individual, and each individual village [as interpreted], that entered
20 the settlement, including the supply vehicles. So from the beginning of
21 1992 until the attack on my village, the shops had a lot of difficulty to
22 obtain food articles in order for the people to be able to buy them.
23 Q. Mr. Muracevic, in paragraph 8 earlier, we read that the
24 check-points near your village were held by Muslims, not Serbs, so now
25 this is something new. Nobody knew about this before now. What
1 encirclement? Which forces encircled the village of Svrake from the
2 beginning of 1992?
3 A. Mr. Karadzic, I don't know whether you are deliberately or
4 unintentionally twisting everything that I'm saying.
5 If you look at my village, Svrake, on the map it was
6 strategically surrounded by places that were controlled by the Serbian
7 population. All key directions, Vogosca, Semizovac, Ilijas, the
8 Zenica-Sarajevo motorway that could provide entries into my area, were --
9 had check-points at the entrance of my village of Svrake, at Manjez, from
10 the direction of Ilijas. There was also a check-point controlled by the
11 Serbs. Also at the Vogosca roundabout leading from the motorway. The
12 Muslim police in Svrake, you could say, didn't -- I apologise -- didn't
13 have many check-points. Beyond the Muslim check-points, there were
14 check-points by Serb policemen from the direction of Ilijas, from the
15 direction of Vogosca, because the motorway passes through Svrake. So
16 from the direction of Ilijas, before you entered Svrake, in a part of the
17 village called Malacici [phoen], there was a Serbian check-point, as well
18 as on the point where you exit from Svrake and you go towards
19 Krivoglavci, going towards the Vogosca motorway. These were the points
20 where the Serbs had set up their check-points.
21 Q. Mr. Muracevic, let us save on time a little bit.
22 Am I correct if I were to say that earlier you said that Svrake
23 was encircled by Serbian forces, and then after that, just now, you say
24 that Svrake was encircled by Serbian settlements? Which of the two is
1 A. Both are true, both encircled by Serbian forces and encircled by
2 Serbian settlements. Krivoglavci, Ilijas, were settlements that were
3 under the control of the Serbs. The entire area around my village,
4 Svrake, meaning Krivoglavci, Paljevo, Semizovac, were held by the Serbs.
5 Q. Were Serbs living there or were some armed forces there?
6 A. Both. There were people living there and there were armed forces
7 there, and they did this alongside the Serbian police forces deployed
9 Q. Before 27th of March, 1992, was there a Serbian police force?
10 A. Even before the division of the police along the ethnic lines in
11 March, it operated before 1992 as two component organisations. They were
12 all together in the same police station, but they did not act exactly
13 together. However, I am reluctant to talk much about the police work,
14 because I have no knowledge about how these structures functioned. All I
15 know is that it often happens that the Serb policemen assisted the
16 barricades, that they were checking mainly Muslims and Croats, which
17 created an impression that even before they were officially divided along
18 ethnic lines, they acted separately as two components.
19 Q. Thank you. Did Muslim police officers man the check-points?
20 A. If we talk about the Vogosca junction, the main roads connecting
21 Semizovac, and further on with Tuzla, Zenica, Sarajevo, were mainly
22 manned by the Serbian police officers. Maybe a Muslim or two was with
23 them at times, but I never saw any of them at these check-points.
24 Q. As for the check-points on the motorway to Zenica, in the area of
25 Svrake, were those held by ordinary people or by the police?
1 A. Mainly by ordinary people and by reserve police force. Some of
2 the Muslim officers that were present there were more involved in
3 maintaining law and order inside the village, itself.
4 Q. Mr. Muracevic, I'm not holding you responsible for these
5 check-points, but you said precisely in paragraph 8 that those things
6 were done by the policemen?
7 A. Excuse me. When I say "police," I meant the reserve police
8 force, because in a certain manner, they acted as one single component.
9 Q. Thank you. Do you know that Hasan Efendic, the commander of the
10 BH Territorial Defence, had issued two directives to attack the JNA and
11 the Serbs? One of them was dated the 12th of April, and the other one
12 was dated the 29th of April.
13 A. I'm not familiar with these directives.
14 Q. But do you know what happened at Pretis on the night between the
15 17th and the 18th of April?
16 A. Well, more or less, I know.
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we take a look for a moment at
19 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Did you know about this second directive that was issued towards
21 the end of April?
22 A. I didn't know anything about either the first one or the second
24 Q. Mr. Muracevic, do you accept that the 29th of April is a date
25 very close to the 2nd of May?
1 A. Well, you don't need me to confirm that. It is so obvious from
2 these two dates that they are not far apart.
3 Q. Look at this directive, please. Does it say:
4 "I order full and massive blockade along all the road
5 intersections on the territory of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina,
6 on which the units of the former JNA are beginning to withdraw technical
7 and material assets along with the MUP.
8 "Carry out the blockade of the wider region of military objects
9 ...," et cetera.
10 Did you have any military facilities in Svrake?
11 A. No, we didn't have any military facilities in Svrake.
12 Now, first of all, speaking about this document, I must say that
13 this is the first time that I'm seeing it, and I absolutely had no
14 knowledge of it in 1992. As I said, this is the first time that I am
15 seeing it. As I said, there were no military facilities in the village
16 of Svrake.
17 Q. Where was this military facility, and how far your house was from
19 A. The JNA barracks in Semizovac was on the right-hand bank of the
20 River Bosna, and my house was on the left-hand-side bank of the
21 Bosna River, exactly opposite the barracks.
22 Q. Can you see this item 2, which says:
23 "Carry out the blockade of the wider region of military
24 facilities ..."
25 Did this include this military facility that you mentioned,
1 regardless of the fact that you didn't know how and on the basis of what
2 the developments took place?
3 A. As far as the barracks is concerned, it is a military facility.
4 But I can't tell you what the intention of the author of this order is.
5 I know that there was no attack launched from Svrake against this
6 military facility, in relation to this order or any other order, for that
7 matter. This military facility was situated in a different local commune
8 on the other bank of the River Bosna, and all the main roads at the time
9 were under the Serbian control. Therefore, there was no possibility for
10 anyone to threaten this kind of facility, and we didn't have any
11 resources to do that anyway.
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we now please have 1D3354.
13 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. You managed to escape on the 5th of December; is that correct?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. You gave your first statement on the 6th of December, which means
17 one day after you escaped?
18 A. Correct.
19 Q. Is this the statement?
20 A. Yes, it is.
21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we now look at page 2.
22 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. Somewhere in the middle, after the paragraph which begins: "The
24 1st of March ... ," it says that:
25 "Military columns started moving in all directions, due to which,
1 because of the directive not to touch the army, and due to the lack of
2 proper materiel and equipment, we did not stop these convoys or control
4 So it means that you knew that there were directives, and then
5 among them was the directive not to touch the army?
6 A. Well, that was a publicly-known thing. The Muslim leadership of
7 Bosnia-Herzegovina called upon the people to refrain from entering into
8 clashes with the JNA. There was no written directive to that effect. It
9 just arrived from various statements given by politicians for the people
10 not to clash with the JNA. The fact is that columns were passing through
11 my village and through Semizovac, made up of the JNA assets obviously
12 stationed in the Serb-controlled areas.
13 Q. Thank you. Do you remember that on the 23rd or the 24th of
14 December, the military leadership of Yugoslavia came and held a meeting
15 with the entire leadership in Bosnia-Herzegovina, in which the Muslim
16 part of the leadership wanted the JNA to be more proactive and active in
17 preventing inter-ethnic conflicts? Was that something that was
19 A. Well, I cannot remember the details. I know that there were
20 various alternatives relating to how the JNA should not interfere and how
21 they could help the people, but I can't recall exactly all the details.
22 I know that there were various options on the table for the JNA to become
23 more actively involved in trying to calm down conflicts, but we were all
24 witnesses of how that happened and that it did not happen exactly as how
25 you had agreed.
1 Q. Thank you. Did you take part in military defence preparations in
2 your village?
3 A. Well, in a certain way, after having studied everything that was
4 happening around us, we were, in a sort of way, forced to protect
5 ourselves in the event of a possible attack on our village.
6 Q. So you were an active participant in the defence preparations; is
7 that correct?
8 A. Well, you can put it that way, but I was not solely responsible
9 for that. But you can say that as the secretary of the Local Commune, in
10 a way, it was my responsibility and duty to take care of the population
11 living in my village.
12 Q. Look at this paragraph, please, which is second from the bottom,
13 which reads:
14 "On the 1st of May, I, Ferid Cutura, commander of the Svrake
15 Territorial Defence, Nijaz Salkic, an active policeman, in agreement with
16 Mirsad Durak, a Gras driver who often parked his bus in front of my house
17 in Svrake, decide to transfer one mortar in a Gras bus to Grad, to the
18 Police Officers' Club, which we succeeded in doing, even though we had to
19 pass through two of their barricades. On our way back from town ..."
20 Now, let's stop here.
21 Do you know that as early as on the 6th of April, separation
22 lines were established, but you managed to cross them with this mortar?
23 A. Well, speaking about this mortar, one needs to know that the
24 barricade that was erected on the motorway stopped a vehicle driven by a
25 Serb. Having inspected the vehicle, they established that certain parts
1 of materiel mentioned here were in that car. Since we did not need those
2 pieces of equipment and materiel in Svrake, and we had no intention of
3 using them, we decided to transfer them to the Territorial Defence of
4 Bosnia-Herzegovina in the way described in my statement.
5 Q. Let's forget about this car driven by a Serb. In Svrake, you had
6 a mortar, and your judgement was that it could be put to a better use in
7 the city of Sarajevo. So you loaded it onto a Gras bus, you crossed the
8 separation line, you passed through the Serbian check-point, and you
9 managed to deliver it in Sarajevo?
10 A. Well, I can't give you a simple answer as it is correct or not
11 correct. We are speaking about some of the equipment and materiel that
12 in the days before that --
13 Q. Sir, I'm not asking you why you did it. I'm asking you if you
14 did it.
15 A. You can see, from the minutes, what I did. But the circumstances
16 that brought this about had to do with the fact that the local Serbs were
17 receiving weapons from the JNA barracks, and the mortar, driven by a
18 Serb, was confiscated on the road. Since we did not have any intention
19 of firing at Serbs from mortars, we decided to pass it on to the legal
20 formation of Bosnia-Herzegovina, which at the time was the
21 Territorial Defence of the State of Bosnia-Herzegovina. We did not need
22 it, because we didn't want to fight anyone by using a mortar.
23 Q. Thank you. When did you confiscate this mortar from this Serb?
24 A. That was on the night before the 1st of May, which means the last
25 day of April, 1992.
1 Q. Why didn't you provide a description of that?
2 A. What do you mean, I didn't provide a description? What do you
3 mean by that, if you see that I described this event in all the
4 statements I gave?
5 Q. Now, tell me, how did you manage to pass through -- over the
6 front-line? At that time, a public city bus was able to cross over?
7 A. At that time, if a public bus set off from Sarajevo, it could
8 only pass through the territory controlled by the Serbs. If it went from
9 Kobilja Glava to Donja Vogosca, which is on the other end of Vogosca,
10 when it turned back, the whole time it had to pass through the barricades
11 controlled by the local Serbs. So in that respect, the transport was
12 done in that way, because we made use of a bus that had been in Svrake,
13 and it managed to pass through Vogosca and onwards to Sarajevo.
14 Q. What would have happened if you had been detected and discovered
15 by the Serbs?
16 A. Well, they would probably have shot us dead.
17 Q. Thank you. You say here:
18 "Upon return from the town, and after consultation with the TO
19 Municipal Staff, Bakir Alispahic, Vehbija Karic and Mustafa Hajrulahovic,
20 it was agreed that we transfer the mortars to Sarajevo."
21 "Ferid Cutura and I, in a Jetta police car, took mortar shells,
22 and we hid it within the food articles that we were transferring and
23 transporting for the police."
24 Now, it seems that you were brave and you managed to hide four
25 mortars intended for Svrake, which means that it's not true that you had
1 no intention of opening fire from Svrake?
2 A. Well, we did not intend to go to Sarajevo. However, the
3 circumstances prevailing at the time couldn't guarantee anything. And
4 I think that it would have been impossible for us to repeat what we did
5 on the 1st of May, which is to say to transfer the mortars to Sarajevo.
6 Q. Were the Serbs aware of these activities that you were carrying
8 A. I assume they were.
9 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Ms. Sutherland.
10 MS. SUTHERLAND: Mr. Karadzic misstates the record. It's
11 actually one mortar and four rounds for a mortar, not four mortars.
12 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I believe that this is a wrong
14 translation, although I do not hold it against them, because due to such
15 speed that we speak at, they might make mistakes.
16 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation].
17 Q. Mr. Muracevic, were you a member of the Crisis Staff?
18 A. By virtue of my position as the secretary of the Local Commune, I
19 was a member of the Crisis Staff.
20 Q. In Svrake local community?
21 A. Yes, in my local commune, and I co-ordinated things in a certain
22 way with the Vogosca Crisis Staff. I'm referring to the part where the
23 Muslims were a majority.
24 Q. When was the Svrake Crisis Staff formed?
25 A. After the multi-party elections and when all those things started
1 happening, there was an attempt, together with the local residents, to
2 rally people more, and it all started towards the end of September or
3 early October 1991.
4 Q. Thank you. Was the municipal Crisis Staff established at the
5 same time?
6 A. I believe that it was also established sometime in mid-September
7 or thereabouts.
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. Let me jog your memory
10 Can we have the first page of this document, please.
11 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. The third paragraph says:
13 "Up until the moment when taken prisoner ..."
14 Mr. Muracevic, do you distinguish between taken prisoner and
16 A. Well, arrests and prisoner-taking, it's one-and-the-same thing
17 for me. I mean, arrests, well, it means I'm taken prisoner when the
18 population is leaving our village; that is to say, on the 4th of May,
19 1992. That is to say, together with a column of people from Svrake.
20 When, in agreement with the representatives of the local Serbs in
21 Semizovac, when it was agreed upon that they would let the citizens of
22 Svrake leave through Semizovac, I was in that column. However, the Serbs
23 did not honour that agreement, and they let part of the column pass, and
24 they took prisoner or arrested another part of the column, this group
25 that was taken to the Semizovac Barracks. And I was included in that
1 group, so that was when I was taken prisoner.
2 Q. Thank you. Before I continue with this paragraph: Is it true
3 that after this confusion, it's the fault of your two Muslim negotiators
4 who did not inform you what the Serbs had promised them; rather, they
5 just got their own people out, and you just managed to show up there
6 without any agreement having been reached with the Serbs?
7 A. Well, our negotiators told people that at 2.00, they would stop
8 firing at us, and that during that interval, whoever wanted to leave the
9 village could. However, the area of my local commune is rather big. Not
10 all the people from my local commune were in a single building. They
11 were throughout the territory of the Local Commune. So over this short
12 period of time, it was not possible to get almost 1.000 people to gather
13 there so that they could pass through this -- or, rather, by this
14 barricade over an hour or two. The Serbs said that they would allow two
15 hours for this passage, but already after an hour, an hour and twenty
16 minutes, they did not -- they cut the column and did not allow all the
17 people from Svrake to get to Breza and other parts of that area.
18 Q. We'll get back to that.
19 In one statement, Mr. Muracevic, you said that your negotiators
20 kept some information from you, what kind of guarantees they got from the
21 Serbs. They took their own people, and when they left, the people
22 organised themselves, and then that column was stopped; is that right or
23 is that not right?
24 A. Well, look, I cannot give a mere yes-or-no answer to your
1 When the negotiators returned, they explained what the terms
2 were. However, the problem is the following: As I and some of my
3 co-workers were walking all over the village, trying to rally all the
4 people to gather, these negotiators managed to leave the village first of
5 all, and those who lived closest to the highway between Zenica and
6 Sarajevo left together with them, and also some others who were there
7 simply didn't have enough time to leave with them. That is where this
8 thing happened.
9 Q. Well, on the basis of this explanation, the agreed column passed
10 and the non-agreed column was stopped?
11 A. No, no. The agreement reached was that the entire village could
12 leave. However, the Serbs did not honour that agreement. So as the
13 column was leaving the village, they simply cut it off. Those who
14 managed to get through did, and the rest were taken to the barracks in
15 Semizovac. I was in this second group. As the secretary of the Local
16 Commune who had worked there for 10 years, I could not allow myself to be
17 at the head of the column and to be the first to leave, whereas some of
18 my citizens would be left behind. I tried to be among the last people
19 who would be leaving the village.
20 JUDGE KWON: My apologies, Ms. Sutherland. I kept you standing.
21 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, if Mr. Karadzic can give me the
22 statement that he's referring to, I'd be very grateful. Thank you.
23 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I do apologise. I will certainly
24 do that.
25 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. Up until the moment when you were taken prisoner, do you agree
2 that a criminal is arrested, but a fighter, an honest man, is taken
3 prisoner, so you did not explain it properly here?
4 A. Well, I explained specifically what it meant to be taken
5 prisoner. They simply cut off the column. I was with this group of
6 people who remained in the village, and I was taken to the barracks of
7 the Yugoslav People's Army, and that, in a way, was one of the first
8 camps that were established for the inhabitants of my municipality, or,
9 rather, my local commune.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I'm worried about whether "taken
11 prisoner" is a proper translation. I would like to have the word
12 "capturing" used.
13 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: "Taken captive."
14 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation] At any rate, let me continue.
15 Q. "I was not involved in the Territorial Defence. I was a member
16 of the Crisis Staff when it was headed by Abdil Kula and later by
17 Murat Cutura."
18 Let us stop at this point. This Murat Cutura, was he in the
19 police of Vogosca? Was he some important person up there?
20 A. Well, he did work in the Vogosca police. Now, I don't know
21 whether he was a really important person. He did work at the police
22 station in Vogosca.
23 Q. Do you remember that Skrbic, Zoran Skrbic or whatever his name
24 was, was dismissed, and this Murat Cutura replaced him at the police
1 A. I don't know about that. But Murat Cutura was one of the
2 officers at the police station, and, in a way, he did something there.
3 He issued permits for weapons or whatever. I wasn't really that familiar
4 with the structure of the police station, itself, and I didn't know what
5 was actually going on within it.
6 Q. I think that the transcript misstates that you were not involved
7 in the Territorial Defence. You said that you were involved in the
8 Territorial Defence, and in your statement you say:
9 "I was involved in the organisation of the Territorial Defence."
10 A. Of course, as secretary of the Local Commune, it is only logical
11 that I was involved in all of this that had to do with the life and work
12 of my local commune, and that included protection from everything that
13 was going on around us and what started happening around our village
14 months before that, and there was this danger or threat that a certain
15 conflict could happen and my village would be attacked too.
16 Q. Thank you.
17 "At the same time, I was a member of the Crisis Staff for Svrake,
18 Semizovac, and Gora. Through an organised group of five youths, we were
19 in contact with the Green Berets, the radio station we had was operated
20 by Dzafer Devic from Svrake. Given that the Territorial Defence units
21 had been disbanded earlier, we were working on manning the police reserve
22 formation and later on recruiting people into the new TO unit. In
23 co-operation with the municipal Crisis Staff, I was engaged in the
24 acquisition of weapons for the settlements of Svrake, Semizovac, and
25 Gora, which we were paying between 600 and 800 German marks apiece,
1 depending on the type of barrels. Certain SDA activists were involved in
2 the acquisition of weapons through their channels too."
3 Did the Serbs know what you were doing?
4 A. Well, of course they did, because they were the main sellers of
5 this weaponry, because people from my local commune and the neighbouring
6 local commune, days before these activities, entered the army barracks in
7 Semizovac and, quite literally, got all these weapons free of charge.
8 Later on, they sold them to the persons you mentioned there. At any
9 rate, it wasn't that this was some kind of organised procurement of
10 weaponry. Basically, it meant buying weapons from the local Serbs who
11 got these weapons from the soldiers of the JNA from the
12 Semizovac Barracks.
13 Q. Thank you. Murat Cutura and Ferid Cutura, are they related?
14 A. I don't know. I don't know whether they are related. However --
15 well, I don't know whether they are related.
16 Q. It's an unusual surname. Are you not aware of the fact that they
17 are closely related; that they're brothers, as a matter of fact?
18 A. Well, I'm not sure. I don't know about that, and I really
19 wouldn't want to speculate.
20 Q. Thank you. Mr. Muracevic, can you explain to all of us here why
21 your amalgamated statement does not contain any of this from the first
22 two pages of this statement?
23 A. Well, as secretary of the Local Commune, I dealt with the
24 organisation of life and work in the territory of the municipality -- or,
25 rather, the Local Commune, and that includes the protection of the local
1 population. It meant that everything was included. In the statement
2 that was handed over here, there is a reference to statements as
3 documents. I don't see how this could have been concealed from you in
4 any way. I mean, the statement that I gave, and that is subject of this
5 other statement, too, I mean, there is a reference to these other
6 statements that you are quoting just now, so I don't think that anything
7 has been concealed. After all, there is nothing to hide.
8 JUDGE KWON: Ms. Sutherland.
9 MS. SUTHERLAND: The witness is right when he says in the
10 amalgamated witness statement, at paragraph 11, it talks about the
11 organisation and what the witness was doing in relation to the TO and the
12 weapons, and it actually footnotes and gives the B/C/S page as well as
13 the English page, to assist Mr. Karadzic. So this earlier statement is
14 actually footnoted in paragraph 11, when the witness describes all of
15 what Mr. Karadzic just talked about, except for the price of the weapons.
16 JUDGE KWON: Very well. Thank you.
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
18 But this buying and selling of weapons does not actually fit into
19 Mr. Muracevic's assertions made in his subsequent statements, that Svrake
20 was not armed and that they had only hunting weapons.
21 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
22 Q. Isn't that right? That's what you said in your subsequent
23 statements, that Svrake did not have enough weapons and that the only
24 weapons that the people there had were hunting weapons?
25 A. All the weapons that existed there were so few, in relation to
1 what had been pointed at us. People who bought some weapons there at
2 very high prices, without the right kind of ammunition, I mean, that
3 really didn't mean very much for the defence of our village, because,
4 basically, people paid money for weapons for which you could not find
5 ammunition in the market for years even before that.
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
7 I owe the Trial Chamber and the witness and Madam Sutherland a
8 reference for this agreement between the Serbs and Muslims about the
9 passage of civilians from the combat areas. 1D3351.
10 Now we can remove this, and tomorrow we will be dealing with
11 documents exhibited by the Defence.
12 So can we have 1D3351.
13 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. In December, you gave yet another statement, or, rather, two more
15 statements on the 24th and on the 26th of December; right?
16 A. Well, there were several statements. I cannot remember at this
17 very moment how many there were, but I think that they are referred to in
18 the appropriate statements; right? Well, yes, this is one of those
20 Q. This is the 26th of December, 1992.
21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we now have the third
22 statement, or, rather, the third page.
23 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation].
24 Q. What you say here is that:
25 "The enemy forces asked us to surrender several times. Without
1 consulting the entire population of Svrake, Hajrudin Djulevic went to
2 negotiate with the enemy. Hajrudin Djulevic was the commander of the
3 newly-formed Svrake Police Station, and Senad Kerla, a member of the
4 Svrake Crisis Staff. During the talks, they received assurances from
5 Miro Kuzman and Nebojsa Spiric that anyone wishing to leave the village
6 of Svrake and head towards the village of Gora would be able to do so.
7 However, after Djulevic and Kerla returned to the village, they failed to
8 inform all the residents about that, and, instead, on the 5th of May,
9 1992, people started leaving the village in an unorganised fashion.
10 Thus, the enemy forces allowed a small portion of the population to leave
11 Svrake, but stopped the remaining 400 residents who followed afterwards
12 and locked them up in a hangar in the Semizovac Barracks compound, where
13 all of us remained together until the 6th of May. After making a list of
14 the detained persons, Nebojsa Spiric and Miro Kuzman arranged for our
15 houses to be searched and looted ..."
16 And so on and so forth.
17 Does this correspond to the truth, that one group that had been
18 agreed upon with Djulevic and Kerla did manage to get out, and that this
19 other group that was moving in a chaotic fashion was stopped and sent to
20 the barracks?
21 A. Kuzman and Spiric, Nebojsa. These two other people, actually,
22 Djulevic and Kerla, they agreed with these two men that the entire
23 village could leave. However, these two men did not inform the entire
24 village about that. That is not to say that there were supposed to be
25 two groups leaving. Quite simply, while I, with my associates, were
1 trying to involve the entire population of my local commune in what they
2 had agreed upon with Kuzman and Spiric, they, on the other hand, left
3 with some other people from my local commune before the dead-line that
4 had been agreed upon. Do you understand that? So when this column
5 started leaving, some of these citizens could not get down there quickly
6 enough, and then this column was cut off. So it was just this one single
7 column, and the agreement reached had to do with the entire population,
8 not only with one group.
9 Q. Mr. Muracevic, I am very grateful to you for these detailed and
10 very extensive explanations. All the participants may benefit from that.
11 But then I'm going to have to ask the Trial Chamber to give me more time
12 tomorrow. However, let's try to round this off.
13 There were 400 people there. Is it correct that out of these 400
14 people, nine of you ended up in the bunker, in this prison?
15 A. Among the first ones, yes. It wasn't only nine that were there.
16 It was at the first moment that it was the nine of us, and then there
17 were others later.
18 Q. Is it true that the women and children were released on the 6th
19 to go back to the village, and then after 33 days, the rest of the men
20 were released, too, and were obliged to report back to work, while 9 of
21 you were detained at the bunker and later at Planina Kuca; is that
23 A. We were transferred from Semizovac to the bunker. A part of
24 the -- a number of the people who were captured at the Semizovac bunker,
25 out of them, with the women, were returned to this Svrake settlement,
1 while all the men were taken to another camp, called Naka's garage, at
2 the Vogosca motorway exit. After a few days, they were returned to the
3 Svrake settlement, but had to report in the evening to sleep at Planjo's
4 house. But before the people were returned to Naka's garage, to Svrake,
5 a group of people were transferred, together with us, to Planjo's house
6 and the Kontiki location. So some of these men returned to Svrake. They
7 had to report to Planjo's house to spend the night every night, which
8 then later turned into them having to spend the whole day to Planjo's
9 house, during the day. And then some of them were sent for work duty
10 every day, and then some of them completely disappeared and were never
11 heard of again.
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] How long are we working today? Do
13 we have time for another question?
14 JUDGE KWON: We've passed already.
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes. Just one more question.
16 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
17 Q. Since you confirmed to us that the Serbs knew what you were
18 doing, in terms of arming, do you see now that that -- the fact that nine
19 people were selected out of a total of four hundred had some sort of
20 basis in the things that the Serbs knew about you?
21 A. No, I don't think that that was that, because those nine people,
22 including me as the secretary of the Local Commune, and if you think of
23 us who were included in some kind of system, but then on the basis of
24 that, there were also among those people in the camp some people that
25 were not really included in anything.
1 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not hear the first part of
2 the question.
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could we ask the Trial Chamber --
4 in view of this extreme broadness that the witness is answering with, I
5 would like to request a little bit more time tomorrow; actually, not
6 extreme, but actually useful broadness. I said "the useful broadness."
7 Well, I'm afraid that these translations are really not precise,
8 and I'm dealing with nuances here.
9 JUDGE KWON: That would be a good reason for you to plan to
10 conduct your cross-examination more efficiently.
11 Tomorrow, 9.00.
12 [The witness stands down]
13 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 2.33 p.m.,
14 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 2nd day of
15 March, 2011, at 9.00 a.m.