1 Monday, 18 July 2011
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness takes the stand]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.14 a.m.
6 JUDGE KWON: Good morning, everyone.
7 There was a delay due to some technical difficulties.
8 We have to be very efficient, in terms of time this week.
9 Yes, Mr. Karadzic, please start your cross-examination.
10 WITNESS: DJORDJE RISTANIC [Resumed]
11 [Witness answered through interpreter]
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Good morning, Excellencies. Good
13 morning, everyone.
14 Cross-examination by Mr. Karadzic:
15 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Ristanic.
16 A. Good morning.
17 Q. First of all, I would like to thank you for your kindness for
18 agreeing to meet with the Defence, which I hope will facilitate this
19 cross-examination and expedite it.
20 I would like to ask you a few questions in relation to
22 On page 60, it was stated and you agreed that the bridge had been
23 blown up by the Serbian forces. Then on page 66, there was also a
24 reference to the Serbian forces. Let us clarify one thing.
25 Given that the Serbian forces feature in the pre-trial brief and
1 the indictment as a unique entity that had unique control and single
2 control, do you understand them as being composed of Serbs or the forces
3 that were under the control of the Serbian authorities?
4 A. Those were primarily forces made up of the Serbs. But at the
5 time when the bridge was blown up, that was the JNA.
6 Q. So if we say "Serb forces," that does not mean that was a single
7 formation under somebody's control, but, rather, we're referring to
8 ethnic composition, and it would be necessary for each individual
9 formation to establish the composition and the subject of control?
10 A. Yes, that would be true at that time.
11 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
12 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Ristanic, can I remind you again that you need
13 to put a pause before you start answering the question, because
14 everything should be interpreted. Thank you, Mr. Ristanic.
15 Yes, Mr. Karadzic.
16 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
17 Q. On page 64, my learned friend the Prosecutor suggested that Brcko
18 had been taken over. I would like to see a map so that we can see who
19 has taken over what in Brcko, and from whom.
20 As the man number 1 of the Serbian authority in Brcko, tell me
21 whether there was any plan and preparations prior to the take-over of
23 A. We didn't have a plan to take over Brcko. The only plan we had
24 was that for the evacuation due east towards Bijeljina, or, rather,
25 towards Serbian villages. That was what we referred to Alternative B, if
1 I'm not wrong.
2 Q. Are you aware with similar recommendations on plans in the event
3 of the outbreak of war? The plan was to save the population by taking
4 them out to Serb-controlled areas, and I'm mean the population from
5 Zenica, Tuzla, Gostovici, which is south of Zavidovici, and from Brcko.
6 For the most part, the people left Zenica. Thanks to the kindness of the
7 Croats from Gostovici, the people moved to Ozren, and it was very
8 difficult for the remaining areas. Whereas in Brcko, due to certain
9 circumstances, people remained behind; is that correct?
10 A. Yes, it's correct, but the Serbs left the town proper and moved
11 to the Serbian villages located towards the Drina and eastwards of the
13 Q. Not towards the Drina, but it should be Bijeljina?
14 A. Yes, Bijeljina.
15 Q. Yes. You did not misspeak. It was wrongly recorded.
16 On that same page, you said that there was shelling coming from
17 both the north and the south. I'm afraid that it remained unclear as to
18 who was positioned to the north of the Srpska Varos and north of the
19 Srpska Varos, that is to say, the Serbian parts of Brcko, and who was it
20 that was shelling these areas?
21 A. The River Sava is to the north, and across the Sava is the
22 Republic of Croatia. To the south at the time, at a distance of up to
23 one kilometre were the positions, what were then the Muslim Croatian
24 forces. Therefore, the shelling sometimes came on Croatia, specifically
25 Rajevo Selo, and more often from the southern part vis-a-vis the
1 Srpska Varos, which was the Muslim municipality of Rahic, and it was
2 renamed the free Brcko two days after the outbreak of the conflict.
3 Q. On page 66, there was a discussion about the civilians in the
4 barracks. Were the civilians detained in the barracks, or did they find
5 shelter with the JNA?
6 A. Initially, all of them found shelter there. The people who had
7 been encircled within the radius of one or two kilometres, all of them
8 decided to go to the barracks or to the Serbian village, Brezik, Stanovi,
9 Razljevo, et cetera. And later on, they returned to the town.
10 Q. Were among them Serbs, Croats and Muslims who found shelter in
11 the barracks?
12 A. Yes, they were all ethnicities. I apologise. Yes, there were
13 people from all ethnicities, and the ones from the other two ethnicities
14 outnumbered the Serbs, as far as I know.
15 Q. Thank you. On page 68, there was discussion about passes, and it
16 was said that a pass was issued to -- passes were issued to Jelisic for
17 people he decided to let through. Could anyone who received this pass be
18 deemed to be lucky?
19 A. Well, I don't know how to answer this question. These passes
20 were issued in the Sumarija building at first, then in the police station
21 and the garrison. Basically speaking, all the people received passes
22 which allowed them to leave freely, with the exception of those who were
23 detained. Now, speaking specifically about the passes given to Jelisic,
24 I think that those people who received them were lucky.
25 Q. Thank you. So did the authorities need these passes or did the
1 people who wanted to pass without any obstacles, without being treated as
2 paramilitary, terrorists, et cetera, wanted them more?
3 A. Well, the purpose of these passes was to ensure free movement,
4 and it was valid along with an ID. It had to be shown to military forces
5 that were manning check-points, and without any further checks they were
6 left through.
7 Q. And that certainly had to do with the front-line which was very
8 close; right?
9 A. Yes. At the time, the front-line was at about 800 to
10 1 kilometres from the River Sava, so it was very close. It was
11 practically within the town, itself.
12 Q. Thank you. On page 71, you said "he didn't listen to us." I
13 didn't comprehend completely whether you referred to Veselic or
14 Goran Jelisic, but what I'm more interested in is that it was recorded
15 "he didn't listen to us." However, listening or obeying is important to
16 make a distinction between. Did you mean that he wasn't listening to
17 what you were saying or that he didn't obey what he was told to do?
18 A. I meant that he didn't obey.
19 Q. Were you talking about Goran or Veselic; Goran Jelisic or
21 A. Well, it's out of context, but I was primarily referring to
22 Veselic, because with Jelisic, we didn't have any communication or
23 control over whatsoever.
24 Q. Thank you. Can you please help me clarify another term that was
25 used. On page 82, there was reference to the people killed or murdered.
1 There is no distinction in the English language between these two terms.
2 Can you help me clarify this for the Chamber?
3 If you say in Serbian "got killed," does that imply the loss of
4 life, unrelated to any criminal activity, that is to say, in combat or in
6 A. When you say "poginuli," in our language it implies that somebody
7 was killed in combat in unrelated criminal activity; that is to say, by a
8 shell, by a stray bullet, in their apartment, at the street, or on the
10 Q. Well, the same applies to those who lose their lives in
11 accidents. Nobody says that they were "poginuli." However, if you say
12 that somebody was killed, that implies some kind of criminal activity?
13 A. Yes, it does.
14 Q. On page 84 and in document P2889, somebody from the military said
15 that he was not very much bothered by your statement that a large number
16 of people were killed. Do you agree that the army and the civilian
17 authorities were not in agreement, that they were slandering each other?
18 A. Yes, I agree. That was the case even before the conflict started
19 in the former Yugoslavia. That was the kind of latent animosity that
20 always existed between the army, primarily the officers, on the one hand,
21 and the civilian authorities, on the other.
22 Q. I read a portion of this document, where it says that not that
23 you weren't bothered, but that you didn't feel responsible, and you
24 distanced yourself because you didn't feel to have had any responsibility
25 with regard to that?
1 A. I am familiar with that document. It speaks about an
2 intelligence officer from East Bosnia Corps. I first saw this document
3 and heard of it some three or four years ago, when there was some local
4 trials held in Brcko. I don't remember that man at all, nor any
5 conversation with people of his kind, and I don't see any reason for the
6 military to be observing us civilians and to give their interpretation of
7 our conduct. Therefore, I believe that these are more some personal
8 impressions that were not based on any proper conversation. In other
9 words, there was no valid reason for any civilian to be bothered by that,
10 as they put it.
11 Q. Thank you. On page 85, there was mention of contacts between
12 Dr. Beli and the leadership at Pale. Since Dr. Beli spent most of his
13 time during that period in Belgrade, is that an opinion of yourself, or,
14 rather, wishful thinking that he was frequently in contact, or did it
15 really happen?
16 MR. HAYDEN: Objection.
17 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Hayden.
18 MR. HAYDEN: The reference to Dr. Beli spending most of his time
19 in Belgrade, I think that's assuming a fact not in evidence. Or if it
20 is, I would like to be pointed to that portion.
21 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Karadzic.
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, in numerous statements,
23 Mr. Ristanic persistently said, and he can confirm or deny that, that
24 Beli spent most of his time in Belgrade, and that he only thought that he
25 was in touch with Pale, but he didn't know that for sure.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Before the conflict, it is true
2 that Dr. Vojinovic or Dr. Beli spent quite a lot of time in Belgrade, and
3 it is also true that I assumed that at the time, he was able to control
4 [as interpreted] more or less frequently, but I have no reliable proof of
5 that. I don't know if he did it on a daily basis or wherever he wanted.
6 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. It says "control." Did you say "control" or "contact"?
8 A. I said "contact."
9 Q. Thank you. On page 86, there is a reference to thousands of
10 people who got killed, and my appeal to President Bush to help us to shed
11 light on this. Eventually, can we speak about 3.000 or fewer than 300?
12 I am not saying that even three people is not horrible enough, but for
13 the sake of the truth, can we establish the figure?
14 A. Officially, it is below 300. Initially, it was 8.000, then
15 6.000, then 3.000, and ultimately we arrived at the figure that I
16 mentioned a minute ago. Unfortunately, that, in itself, is a big number
18 In the first days of the conflict, there were hundreds of dead,
19 but according to the media, such as Slobodno Brcko, they immediately
20 started disseminating this kind of news, and this news reached
21 international media and other sources.
22 Q. For a better understanding, Malo Cerakic [phoen], Slobodno Brcko,
23 are all these pseudonyms for the Muslim Brcko and the Muslim-held
25 A. Yes, that is south of the town, and those were the pseudonyms for
1 the Muslim municipality or the Muslim part of the town and the villages
2 that are populated 100 per cent by Muslims.
3 Q. Thank you. On television, I saw a monument to the Serbs who lost
4 their lives in Brcko. How many Serbs lost their lives in Brcko?
5 A. I don't know the exact number. But when we're talking about the
6 total number involved, we have to see who were the civilians that got
7 killed, that is to say, persons who did not take part in combat and who
8 lost their lives in combat, on the other hand. I think that the brigade
9 sustained losses. That 1st Bosnian Brigade sustained losses that
10 amounted to 400. I'm not sure about other units from the
11 Eastern Bosnia Corps and the 1st Krajina Corps and the 2nd Krajina Corps,
12 and they were there every now and then. As regards civilians - please
13 don't take my word for it, there is exact information about this - but
14 I think that over 45 civilians got killed in town on account of the
15 shelling that we spoke of at the beginning.
16 Q. "Forty-five civilians," that was the word that you used. It was
17 not recorded. That was the figure you received to?
18 A. I said I wasn't sure.
19 Q. Do you remember when the National Assembly was in session in
20 Brcko, shelling took place and civilians lost their lives?
21 A. Yes, I remember that. I think the year was 1994, and I think
22 that Brcko was shelled on that day, and I think that seven persons got
23 killed. I'm not sure, but in the centre itself, about 100 metres away
24 from the location where the Assembly was in session, an entire family got
25 killed; a woman, her father, a child, and also a child that was not even
1 born yet.
2 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Hayden.
3 MR. HAYDEN: Mr. President, it's clear the witness is talking
4 about events in 1994. I'm wondering what the relevance is of this line
5 of questioning.
6 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Karadzic.
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, I asked about the persons who
8 got killed, but the fact remains that that was the attitude of the other
9 side towards our Assembly. They were shelling us, whereas we gave safe
10 passage and escort to their MPs. We have documents to prove that.
11 JUDGE KWON: We are having very limited time, Mr. Karadzic.
12 Please concentrate on the more relevant issues.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Excellency. I forgot it
14 was 1994. However, I know it had to do with the session of the Assembly.
15 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Mr. Ristanic, on page 86, there is -- P3029, that is, it is being
17 suggested that in October, there were camps as well. Until when did the
18 Luka Camp exist in Brcko?
19 A. I could never give a precise answer to that question. I think
20 that it was disbanded definitely sometime in June. I'm not sure, but
21 I think -- I think it was the month of June.
22 Q. Thank you. Bearing in mind that you did not actually know at the
23 time when it was established, and that it was only later that you found
24 out what was happening in the camp, was there a way for the Presidency of
25 Republika Srpska to have been informed in a timely fashion about details
1 of what was going on in Brcko?
2 A. At first, we thought that there would be some kind of
3 co-ordination or whatever. But there was a great deal of difficulty
4 involved, in terms of these contacts, and it was not only with the
5 Presidency of the republic, but also for the police station, with the
6 Ministry of the Interior. Telephone communications were not safe, and it
7 was hard to make proper telephone calls. There weren't any special
8 communications. So very often when you would even reach someone by
9 phone, actually, you'd reach only the office. The man would not be
10 there, himself. So very often this was discouraging. People were, in a
11 way, discouraged from establishing contact with others. I think that
12 there was a multitude of problems in all municipalities, because even
13 larger organisations could not have managed so many problems during that
14 short span of time. Of course, ultimately these problems were being
16 I hope I was clear on this.
17 Q. Thank you. Am I right if I say that for the Serbs in Brcko,
18 peace was their only chance, or fleeing towards Serb areas, and that it
19 was only by way of peace and agreements that they could have had a
20 municipality of their own and a safe life in Brcko?
21 A. Yes, that was the assessment of the leadership, that quite simply
22 we are a minor player, a minor force. There was hardly anything we could
23 do. We could only survive in peace, or perhaps we could move out to
24 safer areas, these Serb villages. But they had to be defended, too, in a
25 way, regardless of where they were. Those areas had to be defended as
2 Q. Could I briefly paint a picture of the post-electoral situation,
3 that is to say, which officials held important positions. Mustafa Ramic
4 from the SDA, a Muslim, was he president of the municipality?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. The president of the Executive Board, was that Pero Markovic, and
7 who was he?
8 A. It was Pero Markovic. He was a Serb, a member of the
9 Serb Democratic Party.
10 Q. The chief of the Public Security Station, was that
11 Stjepan Filipovic, and was Zlatko Jasarevic the commandeer? Jasarevic
12 was a Muslim; Filipovic was a Croat.
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. In the MUP, did the Serbs have the position of the commandeer of
15 the traffic police?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. The commander of the Territorial Defence, was that a Serb,
18 Milica [as interpreted] Milutinovic, who did not agree -- or, rather, who
19 did his best to have the crisis overcome and to have the
20 Territorial Defence remain as a single force?
21 A. Yes. It should also be said -- I apologise for interrupting. It
22 should say Milisav Milutinovic, not Milica.
23 Q. I did say "Milisav ," but perhaps it wasn't clear enough. Thank
24 you. Am I right if I say that the negotiations of the transformation of
25 Brcko into three municipalities, every one of the municipalities had a
1 part of the inner town and villages that belonged to that urban area?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Would that have been a good solution, Mr. Ristanic, because
4 Sarajevo has 10 municipalities, many other bigger towns have several
6 A. Well, in peacetime, that would not have been a problem at all.
7 Three administrations that would have had, perhaps, something in common,
8 I don't think that would have been a problem at all if everyone would
9 have agreed to it at the time.
10 Q. What about the city infrastructure? Would it have remained as it
11 was, and schooling, cultural life, et cetera, would that focus on the
12 ethnic communities?
13 A. Well, that infrastructure would have to be joint infrastructure,
14 waterworks, power, whatever else, but everything else would have been
15 divided along ethnic lines, as is the case today in Bosnia, as far as
16 culture is concerned and all of these other ethnic or national
18 Q. Thank you. In your statement of 2003, on page 16, you said that
19 it was impossible to do anything in secret and that the Crisis Staff
20 could not do anything that would not have been made public.
21 A. Well, sort of. It's a small community, generally speaking.
22 There is a saying to the effect that we are like a torn sack, everything
23 falls out. Once something had been agreed upon, it would leak one way or
24 the other.
25 Q. 65 ter 22238. This is for the participants. We don't need to
1 call it up. We just need the participants to know where this is. On
2 page 23 of that statement, there is a question, and they're asking you
3 whether your estimate of the active and reserve policemen,
4 Territorial Defence, Civilian Protection units, whether:
5 [In English] "... being about the full letters necessary for the
7 [Interpretation] Your answer:
8 "Nothing was done, absolutely nothing."
9 And then on that page, you explain that the Crisis Staff was not
10 prepared for that. People were fleeing, all three ethnic groups.
11 Everyone was fleeing. And this chief of the Territorial Defence said
12 that he didn't want to command Serbs only.
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Do we agree -- actually, you say on that page as well that the
15 JNA was there. Do we agree that that was a rather poorly-manned
16 garrison, and in view of the experience gained in Croatia, this garrison
17 lived in fear of a blockade and total annihilation?
18 A. Yes, you put it right. It was very poorly manned, in terms of
19 active personnel, officers. And also, it was poor from the point of view
20 of resources. It was called a motorised brigade, but I think they had
21 one or two tanks only. And for the most part, they had infantry weapons.
22 On the basis of the experience from Croatia, probably there was fear
23 there, and there was constant threats that there would be a blockade of
24 the barracks, that power would be cut, water supplies. Well, we took
25 part in this tripartite government throughout, regardless of all the
1 problems that were there, the many problems that were there, because we
2 wanted to make sure that things functioned properly, and we did not want
3 to have a situation like the one that they had in Croatia and everything
4 that happened to the garrisons there.
5 Q. Now that we're on the subject, perhaps it's best if I ask you
6 now. Since the army, the reservists, the mobilised persons were looking
7 at what the civilian authorities were doing, and if the civilian
8 government withdrew, then they would flee as well: Did the JNA want to
9 keep the authorities in the barracks, where they had put you up, in order
10 to make sure that there were no further desertions?
11 A. Well, certainly that was one of the stronger reasons for that.
12 Any departure from town, any time certain individuals left town, people
13 who were in power, I mean, prominent citizens, if we can put it that way,
14 people would notice straight away and panic would prevail. I think that
15 the garrison and its leadership had that attitude all the way up until
16 the outbreak of the war. And this was rather successful with the Serbs,
17 and with the Muslims to a degree, but very unsuccessful with the Croats,
18 so it was an indicator that it was possible to discuss things, to have
19 people stay on, to provide guarantees that nothing would happen, and so
20 on and so forth.
21 Q. How wide is the Sava River there, Mr. Ristanic?
22 A. Well, say 350 metres. I don't know. During the year, the
23 average width is, say, 250 metres.
24 Q. So 250 metres away from town, the war had just ended between the
25 JNA and Croatia; right? It went on for a few months, and it took a long
1 time for things to calm down in 1992, isn't that right, after 1991?
2 A. Yes, that's right. Vukovar is 30 kilometres away, as the crow
3 flies, and, of course, the war in Vukovar was finished by the end of
4 November. But it took quite a long time for things to calm down, the
5 area of Slavonia and Croatia, an so on, so it was felt for quite a while.
6 Q. Thank you. Not going into your actual knowledge as to who the
7 authors of the papers known as Variants A and B were, on pages 14 through
8 20 of this statement and further on, you said that nothing or almost
9 nothing was done on the basis of that paper. Did anyone ever call from
10 SDS headquarters to ask for a report on the status or the state of
11 affairs with regard to that paper? Did anyone ever ask you to apply
12 certain things or did they ask you to report on the implementation?
13 A. I have never been asked any such thing, myself. I cannot confirm
14 that anyone made phone calls and urged anything in that respect. Our
15 assessment was that what can be done should be done, and what cannot be
16 done should not be done by force. When I say "by force," I mean that we
17 should not engage in exercises in futility. Some things were not even
18 touched, some things were not completed, and so on.
19 Q. Thank you. Do you then agree that this document, unlike other
20 party decisions, was optional, so those who wanted to could implement
21 things, but those who did not want to would not be subject to any
22 pressures or sanctions from the party?
23 A. Well, to be quite honest, I don't recall the document or the
24 content. It probably did not contain anything referring to consequences
25 of failure to implement it. It was part of a campaign, something to do
1 with the plans of the European Union, Cutileiro, and so on. So what we
2 did was look at what was agreed on at the top. If something was agreed
3 on at the top, we would implement it. Otherwise, we wouldn't, because
4 nothing could remain secret. Had we been preparing something in secret,
5 it would have leaked out, so we refrained from that.
6 Q. Thank you. Do you recall, when you were drawing up the lists for
7 the elections, did anyone from the SDS Central Office interfere in what
8 you were doing or did you do this completely autonomously?
9 A. Well, at the Municipal Committee, we drew up the lists,
10 ourselves. I think a list of some 90 persons was drawn up, and in the
11 first 20 or so places, we put more prominent and better qualified people.
12 So I don't recall anyone ever putting pressure on someone to appoint
13 someone to this or that post, the way things are done today. We simply
14 did things the way we wanted to.
15 Q. Thank you. I believe that the interpreters want both of us to
16 slow down and make more pauses, and it's in the interests of the Defence,
17 because everything should enter the transcript.
18 On page 30 of this statement, 22238, you say that events
19 influenced the situation more than these instructions did because some
20 sort of self-organising had already begun and everyone was cautious, and
21 the war was just across the river, it was that close.
22 A. Yes, that's correct, because we saw what was happening in Croatia
23 every day.
24 Q. Thank you. How far is Bosanski Brod away from Brcko, as the crow
1 A. Well, as the crow flies, not more than 50 kilometres.
2 Q. Thank you. Do you recall that every incident was widely
3 publicised and broadcast, and that very often soldiers from Croatia
4 crossed the bridge, either the National Guard Corps, or some unidentified
5 paramilitary units, or the regular Croatian Army, and together with
6 Armin Pohar and the local Croatian and Muslim para-militaries, they
7 killed people in Bosanski Brod? The first time they crossed the bridge
8 was on the 3rd of March, and then on the 25th of March and the
9 26th of March in Sijekovac.
10 A. Well, I don't know the dates and names you mentioned, but
11 everybody knew about the incursions of Croatian forces into
12 Bosanski Brod, and especially the crimes in Sijekovac which are still
13 under investigation, and so on.
14 Q. Thank you. Do you recall that the Croatian side destroyed the
15 bridge at Gradiska and the one at Samac on their side at a time when they
16 were afraid that the JNA would cross over from Bosnia into Croatia, and
17 that in Brcko, when the JNA was afraid that the Croatian Army would cross
18 over into Bosnia, the JNA destroyed the bridges ? So do you agree that
19 bridges are destroyed by the side which fears that the other side might
20 cross the bridge?
21 A. Well, I don't know that in general. But as for Gradiska, Samac
22 and Orasje, where the bridge was destroyed sometime in October 1991, and
23 also in Brcko, where that well-known bridge which we referred to as the
24 footbridge which could take only up to five tonnes in weight, that they
25 were destroyed on the Croatian side, and what was left could only be used
1 by pedestrians and small vehicles, so that, in a way, they were afraid of
2 a Croatian invasion in Bosnia. I assume that was the reason for the
3 destruction of the bridges, because no one would wantonly destroy bridges
4 of such importance.
5 Q. Thank you. Referring to the plebiscite at page 36 of this
6 statement of 2003, you say that no one was opposed to the plebiscite of
7 the Serbian people, and it took place without any incidents, and that, on
8 the other hand, the Serbs did not cause any problems when the referenda
9 were held among the Croatian and Muslim communities in February and
11 A. Well, when it comes to Brcko, that's quite correct.
12 Q. Was voting by secret ballot, and was there any way to determine
13 who was loyal and who voted for what, or was it really a secret ballot?
14 A. Well, the Serbian Democratic Party carried out the plebiscite
15 according to the electoral lists which had already been in place since
16 1990. It was really by secret ballot. You would take a ballot paper and
17 go behind a screen, circle the answer you wanted, and drop the piece of
18 paper into a box. So it was truly democratic, it was really by secret
20 Q. Thank you. The media at that time were functioning, and there
21 were many reports about shooting across the River Sava from
22 Bosanska Kostajnica, Bosanska Dubica to Bosanski Samac. Gradiska was
23 shelled in Brod, and then there was the attack on Kupres, the murders of
24 over 50 Serbs at Kupres. All this took place before the 6th of April.
25 How did you manage to keep peace in Brcko for a whole month after the
1 outbreak of the war in Brod, Kupres and Sarajevo?
2 A. Well, there was an agreement within the party that we should
3 approach those negotiations according to the instructions, that all three
4 sides should negotiate, and we agreed not to raise tensions; for example,
5 when there was voting in the Executive Board - that was the municipal
6 government, that's what it was called at the time - or when there was
7 out-voting in the Assembly which happened from time to time, this
8 out-voting. But our policy was simply not to raise tensions and to
9 create an atmosphere of tolerance. In view of our size and our strength,
10 we had only 14 assemblymen in the local parliament. We had only two
11 prime ministers. So, at any rate, it suited us that there should be
12 peace. We did not want to provoke anything. We simply monitored the
13 situation, and, in a way, we were buying peace, hoping that somebody else
14 at a higher level would manage to negotiate something, and that in this
15 way we would be able to avoid a conflict, because we knew that we would
16 be sure to lose it. As for the other side and this third side, I don't
17 know what their reasons were. I'm just telling you my impression about
18 our reasons.
19 Q. Taking into account what you have just said, were you in a
20 position to bang your fist on the table at meetings of the Assembly of
21 Brcko Municipality?
22 A. Are you referring to me, personally, or to all the
23 representatives and members of the executive?
24 Q. I am referring primarily to you, personally, because someone said
25 that you are in a position to dictate the course of events and to bang
1 your fist on the table. Was this an option?
2 A. Well, first of all, I'm not that sort of person. I have never
3 done that sort of thing in my life. And my next point is that we were
4 not in a position to dictate to anyone, especially not in the way you
5 describe, because this was always broadcast on television, there were
6 always journalists present. In April, the last month, there was no
7 chance of an incident occurring. I remember some joint statements and
8 some individual statements we made for the public, trying to calm down
9 the population, to encourage the population. This Court probably has
10 these statements. If not, I recently found them somewhere. So the
11 chances that this is true are very small, indeed, non-existent.
12 Q. Thank you. You, like others, were called up as a reservist.
13 Until when were you a reservist?
14 A. I was in the reserve composition of that brigade until, I think
15 it was, the 21st of December, 1991, and -- well, this means I was there
16 for a full three months, which is the most you were able to stay away
17 from your job, your professional job. I responded to the call-up, as did
18 many others at the time, and I spent three months in the reserve
19 composition in the garrison which was some 300 metres away from my house.
20 Q. Thank you. So in 1991, you did not go to the Municipal Assembly
21 in uniform. In 1992, in April, did you attend Assembly sessions wearing
22 a uniform and banging your fist on the table?
23 A. No, never, never. Not only did I not go to the Assembly in
24 uniform, I never put on my uniform except during those three months.
25 Q. As a reservist, a conscript, did you have a rank?
1 A. Yes. I was a reserve officer of the military police.
2 Q. Thank you. I would now like to ask you about the six strategic
3 goals that you spoke about on page 40 of this statement made in 2003.
4 Is it correct that except for the corridor and, possibly, access
5 to the sea, we discussed all these strategic goals with the other two
6 sides in Bosnia-Herzegovina peaceably, and were these strategic goals,
7 for the most part, built into the Cutileiro Plan or, rather, the
8 Lisbon Agreement?
9 A. Well, that was our understanding, that these strategic goals
10 which appeared in a document form much later, but that all the points
11 in -- contained in these strategic goals, that all this should be
12 achieved in peaceable conditions, in peacetime, not in war and wartime
13 conditions. In war, there are other rules.
14 Q. Thank you. If we look at the first strategic goal, ethnic
15 separation into separate entities, do you recall that this was something
16 that the European Community offered us as a condition for us to accept
17 the secession of Bosnia-Herzegovina and the existence of
18 Bosnia-Herzegovina within its existing borders, and that we agreed to
20 A. Yes. I remember this was agreed to. I don't know what under
21 conditions. You know that better than I do, so that you would know that.
22 But I know that the leopard skin, as it was referred to, was offered and
23 agreed to.
24 Q. Well, thank you for mentioning the leopard skin. Do you agree
25 that in peacetime, assuming that there would be no war, the territorial
1 continuity of these constituent units was not necessary? For example, in
2 Switzerland, which has a certain number of inhabitants, everyone can have
3 their own canton. They have 30.000 inhabitants. Let me simplify.
4 A. No, I'll answer that. I'm just waiting for the interpretation.
5 I'm just waiting for the interpretation so that we are not told to make
6 pauses. But please simplify.
7 Q. In other words, do you agree that a corridor, as a necessity,
8 emerged only in the course of the war; that in Banja Luka, 12 babies died
9 because nobody wanted to deliver oxygen, that it was impossible to
10 communicate, and that the corridor appeared as a strategic goal only
11 because the war broke out, but it did not exist as a necessity before the
13 A. Well, the corridor, as an idea, emerged only during the war. It
14 proved to be necessary in the war. Until then, nobody mentioned it. We
15 all know what the word "corridor" means. It appeared as a necessity.
16 You mentioned the deaths of those 12 babies, and there was not just that.
17 This corridor was needed for the proper functioning and life of most of
18 the population west of the corridor and up to the corridor.
19 Q. You are a reserve officer. If, in some places, the corridor is
20 only 800 metres wide, is it possible to use infantry weapons across the
22 A. Well, that was the situation we had in Brcko for almost
23 15 months, these 800 to 1.000 metres, so you could never go through the
24 corridor in safety. There was an anecdote saying that the authorities
25 stopped in Brcko only when they had a flat tyre. Everyone would drive
1 through at great speed because it was simply unsafe. There were many
2 incidents when people got killed in that corridor, and they were killed
3 by infantry weapons, especially in the part near the River Sava.
4 Q. Thank you. Do you remember that in the Cutileiro Plan and the
5 Lisbon Agreement, it was envisaged for the Serbs to get something in
6 Posavina, but that somehow in the area of Brcko, this communication line
7 was severed and that that happened -- or, rather, that this was
8 acceptable in peacetime?
9 A. I cannot remember any details. All I know is we didn't get
10 anything as a result of these negotiations. We were featuring nowhere.
11 Our great problem was how to ensure the functioning of the municipality,
12 itself. The municipality of Brcko was equally divided, in ethnic terms.
13 We had Serbs on both sides, and the Croats were in the middle.
14 Therefore, it was vitally important for us to establish links between
15 these Serbian villages, and the only way to do that was through the town.
16 Therefore, we were rather dissatisfied with the solution and we were
17 looking for other ways of making passages, which led to some new
18 researches and new negotiations.
19 Q. Thank you. On page 40 of the statement, you explain why it was
20 necessary to expand the corridor towards Majevica in order to reduce the
21 danger from fire that the corridors were exposed to; is that correct?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. You would then expect the prime minister or the president of the
24 republic to stop at Brcko and have a cup of coffee?
25 A. Yes, exactly, and that happened later, indeed.
1 Q. Do you agree that the whole Province 3 in the Cutileiro Plan,
2 including Posavina and Brcko, was handed over mostly to the Croats, and
3 that I gave my agreement in principle to that plan, although we failed to
4 ensure the corridor, and then later on the people rejected that plan?
5 A. Yes, I remember us being very frustrated due to that, and - how
6 shall I put it? - our morale was deflated concerning our participation in
7 politics or war, because nobody was able to explain to us how could we
8 live with some viaducts that we would have passage on the south or on the
9 east, that various maps were being drawn at the time and they were
10 brought to the government, and eventually we would rather happy that this
11 plan failed.
12 Q. If I'm not wrong, the Vance-Owen Plan, the whole Province 3 was
13 given to them. But what you're talking about is something that was
14 included in the Stoltenberg Plans that included the so-called tea
15 passages with viaducts, and that Brcko would be divided east and west of
16 the railway tract. Do you remember these terms, viaduct, tea passages
17 east and west of the railway tracks; do you recall that?
18 A. Yes, yes, I remember that clearly. But, thank God, that didn't
19 happen. And I'm talking about Brcko, because I'm thinking locally.
20 Q. Thank you. I don't know how much you know about the
21 Strategic Goal 3, which is surrounded by some kind of confusion. Our
22 position was not to have a solid boundary on the Drina between the two
23 worlds. Did you understand it the same way or in the way as suggested in
24 the indictment between the two-Serbian state? And in the mind of our
25 people, was the Drina boundary line between the east and the west, the
1 Orthodox religion and Islam, or is it a link to Serbia?
2 A. You put it rightly. The term "soft boundary" was a term that was
3 mentioned very often, maybe by somebody later, by some irresponsible
4 people, but we never talked about two states. I think that "soft
5 boundary" is a very good term.
6 Now, speaking about us Serbs, we never perceived the Drina as a
7 boundary between the two worlds, as you said, between two civilisations
8 and two cultures. We always perceived it as a natural border, the river
9 that is just passing there and that could always be crossed, and that
10 people could live on both its banks without establishing some very strict
11 reasons that would make this impossible.
12 Q. In other words, that you didn't have a strict border regime; is
13 that correct?
14 A. Correct.
15 Q. On page 45 of the statement, you speak about how and what the JNA
16 held under its control, and that we reinforced their ranks by providing
17 manpower, and that those units were not under our command and control.
18 Do you agree that our able-bodied men, young men, were in the JNA and
19 that they joined in greater numbers once the Serbs and Croats ceased to
20 respond, whereas --
21 THE INTERPRETER: Could Mr. Karadzic please repeat the second
22 part of his statement.
23 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Karadzic, the interpreters couldn't follow the
24 second part. And, most of all, please slow down.
25 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. Is it true that our able-bodied men, Serbs, pursuant to our
2 recommendation, responded to JNA call-ups, while at the same time the
3 Muslim and Croat able-bodied men were released from that obligation
4 towards the JNA and were available to their respective ethnic communities
5 for a possible participation in paramilitary units?
6 A. As far as the Serbs are concerned, we pursued this kind of policy
7 of instructing and directing all able-bodied Serbs to respond to call-ups
8 in order to man the units that were low in numbers, although it wasn't
9 very easy because there was a lack of manpower. As for the other two
10 sides, they started boycotting the army and the Yugoslav idea, in
11 general, although before that, they were in favour of that. We didn't
12 understand that, where they ended up. There were various speculations
13 about paramilitary formations being formed, and these were very serious
14 speculations that were coming from reliable sources, that there was an
15 indication of that happening. However, we in Brcko couldn't know that
16 with any degree of certainty. Nobody could confirm that to us, so that
17 we were unable to react to that. We believed that in view of the shared
18 power and joint authorities, that this would be resolved. However, it
19 seems that somebody was pulling those strings from the very top.
20 Q. Thank you. In your 2011 statement, page 10, it is suggested in
21 the question that some of the negotiations that -- 65 ter 23193, page 10.
22 It is suggested that the S -- the S -- secret wish in these negotiations
23 was for the town to be divided along ethnic lines. However, you said
24 that that was an instruction, and I believe that that was enshrined in
25 the Cutileiro Plan. Do you agree that this division along ethnic lines
1 would be better suited for a transformation of the town into three
2 municipalities based on ethnic principle, as suggested by Cutileiro,
3 which applied to the whole of Bosnia; that is to say, to establish three
4 entities based on ethnicity?
5 A. Yes, that suited us completely. We wanted to define the
6 territories in a certain way to divide the municipality, because we were
7 thought that during peacetime, that was -- that would have functioned
9 Q. On pages 42 and 43 in the same statement, you speak about the
10 events from the Second World War and that a large number of Serbs and
11 Jews were either killed or expelled. Do you agree that those who had
12 been expelled during the World War II could deem themselves to be
13 fortunate because otherwise, if they stayed behind, they were killed?
14 A. Yes. Brcko was occupied in the Second World War practically from
15 day one by the independent state of Croatia because Brcko was in the
16 so-called Croatian Banovina. And virtually until the very last day of
17 the war, it remained under occupation. There was never any other force
18 entering the town in order to liberate it. All the Jews and the majority
19 of Serbs who didn't escape were killed. And to this day, there is a
20 monument on the bridge commemorating these killings. In other words,
21 anyone who managed to leave was fortunate, and I can say that only a few
22 families returned after the Second World War. They chose to remain where
23 they went because probably they had some very bad experiences in the
24 preceding period.
25 Q. Just one more question before the break. Is it true that Orasje
1 and Odzak fell after Berlin and Zagreb, that they managed to resist
2 longer than these two cities?
3 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Karadzic, what relevance is there?
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, this is just before the break
5 in order to complete the picture of our history of our people there.
6 JUDGE KWON: I wanted to let you know that there is some minor
7 schedule change for today's sitting.
8 Given that there's a delay by 15 minutes at the beginning, we'll
9 be sitting, for the first session, until quarter to 11, and we'll have a
10 half-an-hour break, and then we'll have another 90-minute session, i.e.,
11 quarter past 11.00 to quarter to 1:00, and after which, thanks to the
12 indulgence of staff, we'll have today only a 45 minutes' break, after
13 which we'll sit until 3.00, in order to keep the total time as usual.
14 Yes, Mr. Karadzic.
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] The Defence supports this. I
16 didn't know that. That's why I made these digressions, because I thought
17 that we were nearing the end of the first session.
18 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. Mr. Ristanic, is it true, and you spoke about this in your
20 testimonies given in Bosnia-Herzegovina on page 74 -- that's 1D3899.
21 Maybe we can call it up in e-court, 1D3899. And then on page 74, you
22 speak about the coming of 16.000 people from Sandzak to settle there,
23 and, in an artificial way, they made Serbs a minority in some parts of
24 the town. Is it true that in this artificial manner, the ethnic make-up
25 of Brcko was changed?
1 A. Yeah, in good measure, that's correct. That was back in the
2 1960s and 1970s, when there was a huge influx of people from the Sandzak.
3 But that involved all the people who came from the Sandzak, both in
4 Serbia and Montenegro. People came to settle from down there. And I
5 must admit that this whole process extended as far as Osijek to the
6 north, across the Sava. There are still these -- Dizdarusa,
7 Suljagica Sokak, which are two major settlements, and I remember that
8 those were the settlements created by those people back in the 1960s and
9 1970s. So over a period of 20 years, quite a few people came to live
10 there, and one can deduce that's judging by their last names, by the
11 documents where their places are birth are indicated and their personal
12 numbers, et cetera. I have nothing against those people, but it's a
14 Q. It wasn't recorded that you said, "I have nothing against those
15 people, but it's a fact." Can this please be recorded.
16 Is it right, you said that?
17 A. Yes, exactly. That's what I said. I have nothing against those
18 people who came to live there, but it's a fact.
19 Q. Thank you. Did that bring about, primarily, cultural tensions
20 and, on the eve of the war, ethnic tensions as well?
21 A. Yes, for the most part, because people who had come there were
22 from a different culture, they had different habits and customs,
23 different lifestyles, et cetera. Now, with the emergence of new
24 political parties, members of this ethnic community, the settlers,
25 managed to secure for themselves an important place or became very much
1 engaged in promoting the programme of the Party of Democratic Action.
2 Q. In other words, they were more inclined towards extremism than
3 the local population; right?
4 A. Well, you could put it that way, although one should not
5 generalise. However, the -- the fact remains that all of us from
6 Posavina, the local people, Serbs, Croats and Muslims, are rather
7 peace-loving, tolerant persons; whereas others who came from other areas,
8 these are the Dinara types, as they are known, they are more incident
9 prone, not to say more than that.
10 Q. Thank you. In the statement from 2003, that is 65 ter 22238, on
11 page 13, you say that towards the end of December, from the 21st until
12 the 23rd of December, 1991, you were elected president of the
13 Serb Assembly, and that you had your first and last meeting when
14 Munib Jusufovic and others asked you, at the cafeteria of the
15 municipality, Where is your territory for that kind of municipality? You
16 said that your answer was that, This was not based on a territorial
17 principle, but that it is there to represent Serbs and be in charge of
18 Serb affairs. As for the Assembly of the Serb People in Brcko, did you
19 understand that as a replacement for the Chamber of Nations in the
20 municipality, or is that what Jews have throughout our country, the
21 Jewish municipality, that does not require the existence of a particular
22 territory; simply, it is in charge of the affairs of that community?
23 A. One could put it that way. At first, yes, that was our
24 understanding of it, because the other two parties were not really
25 opposed to that, that we have our own assembly, especially in peacetime.
1 That was, roughly, how we understood it. Now, whether it was exactly as
2 a Jewish community, as you have put it just now, or whatever, but it
3 wasn't anything special. It wasn't a legislative assembly or something
4 like that, or, as you put it, say, a chamber of nation, something like
6 Q. Thank you. In the statement from 1998, on page 2, you also say
7 that that municipality was a Serb assembly, not a municipality from a
8 territorial point of view, and that it did not function until the war.
9 222 -- 222637 is the 65 ter number. That is your statement of
10 1998, and you call it the Serb assembly, not the Serb municipality of
11 Brcko, and until the war it did not function. Do you agree from that
12 point of view it served the purpose of a chamber of nations, as it were,
13 and that Brcko was transformed -- or if Brcko had been transformed into
14 three municipalities, then that assembly would have been the legitimate
15 authority in the Serb municipality?
16 A. It was said that it was not in session and it did not create any
17 problems to the official legal Assembly where the representatives of all
18 ethnic communities were. At the same time, when the three communities,
19 the three municipalities were created then it started functioning. It is
20 true that it didn't happen start straight away in full capacity, but --
21 Q. Thank you. In the same statement, 22237, on pages 5 and 6, you
22 say that the ethnic communities were discussing the possibility of having
23 an administrative division of the municipality in order to avoid
24 conflict, and you confirmed that the Serb side had the greatest interest
25 in that because it was the weakest of all three. Once the conflict broke
1 out, were three municipalities actually established, and where were the
2 Croat and Muslim municipalities in Brcko?
3 A. Yes, at the same time. That is to say that this central
4 authority fell apart on the 2nd of May. Everyone went their own way, and
5 everyone established something in a certain way. So there was a Serb
6 municipality of Brcko; there was the so-called Brcko Rahic or
7 Slobodno Brcko, that is the Muslim one; and then Brcko Ravne, that is the
8 Croat Brcko. So basically they functioned at the same time, practically
9 three new municipalities with their respective territories.
10 Q. Thank you. Do you agree -- actually, in your statement of 2003,
11 that is, 65 ter 22238, on pages 51 and 51, you were asked how and why
12 these other two national parties agreed on talks aimed at transformation,
13 when they didn't really have to, and you say, I cannot be sure that the
14 SDS asked for separation, but this was an agreement reached between the
15 parties. Does this correspond to your experience; namely, that the Serb
16 side in Bosnia, as a constituent people, could have prevented the
17 secession of Bosnia-Herzegovina from Yugoslavia by a certain veto, and
18 that the Muslims and Croats needed our agreement for a secession, and
19 that it is with that in mind that they agreed to these arrangements?
20 A. It is clear that Serbs, Croats and Muslims in Bosnia-Herzegovina
21 were all constituent peoples, and that, according to the Constitution,
22 not a single people could be out-voted, especially with regard to matters
23 regulated by the Constitution, and that would particularly be true in the
24 case of important things like secession and so on.
25 Q. Thank you. On that same statement, on pages 54 and 55, you were
1 asked, yet again, about the corridor, and it was even stated that this
2 position of yours was quite a headache. And you say that that's not the
3 way you perceived it, and you say that in peacetime everything looked
4 different. You say that, as a matter of fact, you had reached agreement
5 to have another session with the Muslim and Croat sides. It was planned,
6 but it did not actually happen, due to what followed.
7 A. Yes.
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Would it be right now?
9 JUDGE KWON: Yes. We'll have a break now for half an hour and
10 resume at 11.15.
11 --- Recess taken at 10.45 a.m.
12 --- On resuming at 11.18 a.m.
13 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Karadzic.
14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
15 Could I now please have 0701 - that's the ERN number of this map
16 I'd like to have displayed - up to 0739 and then the 18th map, the
17 municipality of Brcko.
18 JUDGE KWON: Could you tell us the 65 ter number again,
19 Mr. Karadzic?
20 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I'm trying to find it, Excellency.
21 But I'm afraid that this has never been called up as such, so I cannot
23 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
24 Q. While we're trying to find our way through this: Mr. Ristanic,
25 you said in your statement of 1998, on page 7, that the Serbs were arming
1 themselves by responding to the call-up for reservists, and then they
2 returned with weapons. Let me ask you this: Do you remember - and since
3 you were a reserve officer, you must know this - that before the war,
4 when there were military exercises of reservists, that people took
5 weapons home, uniforms, and many even took weapons?
6 A. Well, yes. All of us military conscripts had uniforms issued to
7 us, gas masks, and everything else that was needed, as you said, various
8 types of equipment, and we took all of that home. And there were members
9 of the armed forces that had these weapons with them. I cannot remember
10 exactly now. It wasn't general practice, but that did happen. It could
11 be called practice.
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
13 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Hayden.
14 MR. HAYDEN: I think the map Mr. Karadzic is referring to is
15 65 ter 19095.
16 JUDGE KWON: Very kind of you, Mr. Hayden. Let's try that.
17 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. While we're waiting for this, let me ask you another question. I
19 would like us to conclude by the end of this session.
20 Witnesses testified here that different paramilitaries first
21 showed up as regular volunteers, they were armed, equipped, and then when
22 they get fed up with the front-line, they'd become urban renegades and
23 commit crimes in urban areas. Is that your experience?
24 A. Yes, yes. I think that that was even a rule. They didn't have
25 weapons, or uniforms, or anything, so they came to local garrisons. They
1 got armed there. They formally became members of different units, but
2 then afterwards they became renegades in accordance with their own plans,
3 if I can put it that way.
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could I now please ask for
5 assistance to be given to Mr. Ristanic. Could he please be given an
6 electronic pen.
7 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. And, Mr. Ristanic, I would like to ask you to draw this for us,
9 what those first days looked like, what the actual deployment was. Maybe
10 you could use different colours. Or, actually, first, let me ask you to
11 mark the separation line, the one that ran parallel to the Sava River.
12 A. Do you mean at the beginning of the war?
13 Q. The very beginning.
14 A. Could this just be zoomed in, please?
15 JUDGE KWON: Let us zoom in before the witness marks.
16 Mr. Ristanic, could you just wait, without touching the screen.
17 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Where it says "Luka Camp," the inner-city, all of that.
19 A. Yes, yes, I understand, but I just want to be very specific.
20 JUDGE KWON: Will this do, Mr. Ristanic? Please wait.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
22 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. Just wait a moment. They have to activate the pen.
24 A. [Marks]
25 Q. What is east of this line?
1 A. Croat and Muslim villages and areas, and also a part of town, of
2 course, a part of town as well [marks].
3 Q. Did I misunderstand you? Are you referring to the east or west
4 in relation to this line?
5 A. I'm sorry, I do apologise. To the east are Serb villages, Serb
6 villages; towards Bijeljina, that is. And towards the west and south are
7 Croat and Muslim villages. And also to the west, there are two villages
8 that are populated by Serbs.
9 Q. And this line that you drew, the full line, is that where the
10 separation line was or the confrontation line, the front-line?
11 A. Precisely. Well, after all, this is the way it was,
13 Q. Thank you. Can you mark the Muslim municipality of Brcko and the
14 Croat municipality of Brcko?
15 A. [Marks]
16 Q. Thank you. That's the Croat area, right, marked by an "H," and
17 the Muslim side marked by an "M"? Could you place an "S" in the Serb
19 A. [Marks]
20 Q. And this is the way things were while the corridor was
21 interrupted. For how long did this go on?
22 A. With the interrupted corridor, the 8th of May, 1992.
23 Q. Thank you. Now, could you please put the date there and sign
25 A. [Marks]
1 JUDGE KWON: Did we hear what does this dotted line mean?
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I believe that that's going to be
3 the next exhibit.
4 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Is it true that this dotted line roughly corresponds to the
6 extension of the corridor in the later period of war?
7 A. No, no. I roughly marked the area of the town, itself, here, the
8 urban area.
9 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Your signature, please, Mr. Ristanic.
10 THE WITNESS: [Marks]
11 JUDGE KWON: Yes, this will be admitted.
12 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit D1570, Your Honours.
13 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
14 Q. I'd now like to ask you to keep this same map. This is going to
15 be admitted, but then we're going to have a clean map. And then could
16 you mark the establishment of communication with Posavina and Croatia,
17 and also by the Sava River, what the corridor looked like?
18 A. When the corridor was opened?
19 Q. Yes, yes.
20 A. [Marks]
21 Q. For most of the war, did this remain like that, except near Brod?
22 Can you draw a dotted line showing to what extent the corridor was
23 widened in the direction of Brod in the course of the war?
24 A. [Marks]
25 Q. Thank you. Did we ever control the streets?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Thank you. When was this corridor broadened; in 1993?
3 A. In 1993, the corridor was broadened near Brod. There was a plant
4 there that was necessary for the electricity supply, and then it was also
5 extended to cover the streets. There are a few small places -- or,
6 rather, not the streets, but a Croatian village called Ulice. There were
7 some other small villages, such as Lucice [phoen], Donji, Gornji, and
9 Q. Yes. Can you put the date and your signature?
10 A. [Marks]
11 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could we have the blank map again
12 without any markings?
13 JUDGE KWON: This one will be admitted as Exhibit D1571.
14 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
15 Q. Now look at the unmarked map, and show us how, according to those
16 negotiations and agreements, the cake would be cut up where every ethnic
17 community would have parts of the town, the country-side, and so on? The
18 Serbian area would remain more or less as it was; right?
19 A. I will mark what we more or less agreed on by the end of April
20 1992. There were some small areas in the centre of town that had yet to
21 be negotiated, but what we agreed on was the following. I'll mark it
22 now. This is the Brka River Valley [marks], and we had two enclaves, two
23 Serb enclaves [marks].
24 Q. And this would be the Serbian municipality of Brcko, and the
25 others would be Croatian and Serbian, and both would actually go into the
1 centre of town?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Could you just draw a line between the Croatian and Muslim
5 A. Well, they didn't have much to say about that because there were
6 no mixed villages. The Croats lived mostly in a few large villages near
7 Brcko. There were not many of them, about three and a half thousand in
8 the town itself, so that it was understood that the Croatian municipality
9 would be composed of those Croatian villages. And this later came to be
10 called Brcko Ravno. I will now mark it approximately [marks]. I forgot
11 another Serb village here in this part [marks], and this is Bukvik
12 [marks] which I mentioned. And, approximately, these would be the Croats
13 [marks]. If this is all right [marks].
14 Q. Thank you. Now, just tell me, is this Bukvik which was encircled
15 by them and which was completed destroyed, and large numbers of civilians
16 were captured and killed?
17 A. Yes, Bukvik and Cerik [Realtime transcript read in error
18 "Serik"]. When I say "Bukvik," it's more than one village, Bukvik;
19 Vujicici, Dzigure, Bukovac, I think six or seven hamlets which made up
20 the Bukvik Plateau. This was on an elevated area.
21 Q. Thank you. Could you please put the date on this map and sign
22 it, and then we'll look at another document.
23 A. [Marks]
24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] May this be admitted into evidence?
25 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Exhibit D1572.
1 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could we now look at 1D3868.
2 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. In September 1992, Bukvik was liquidated; is that right?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. We have a telegram from you to the Presidency of the Republic and
6 the Main Staff, and the commands of the East Bosnia and
7 1st Krajina Corps. Do you remember that at that time you were crying
8 out, saying that in the area of Donji and Gornji Bukvik, 2.000 Serb
9 inhabitants lived in encirclement, without any food or supplies, and that
10 a hundred had already lost their lives, that they were completely
11 encircled without food, ammunition or health-care? Do you remember
12 sending this telegram?
13 MR. HAYDEN: Excuse me, Your Honour.
14 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Hayden.
15 MR. HAYDEN: This relates to events in September 1992 concerning
16 Bukvik. I don't see the relevance of this line of questioning.
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] If I may respond to that.
18 These were enclaves which were immediately surrounded in April
19 and May 1992 and were not a threat to anyone, and they were surrounded.
20 We were not allowed to send them food supplies, and finally in September,
21 they were liquidated. And to get a picture of Brcko as a whole, I think
22 this is important.
23 JUDGE KWON: Before that, Mr. Hayden, could you expand on the
24 reason why you think this is not relevant?
25 MR. HAYDEN: I understand that this document concerns alleged
1 crimes against Serbs who are living in Bukvik in September 1992. I don't
2 see how that relates to the crimes charged in the indictment, in
3 particular the crimes charged in the indictment relating to Brcko.
4 JUDGE KWON: What did you mean by "the crimes charged in the
5 indictment, in particular the crimes charged in the indictment relating
6 to Brcko"?
7 MR. HAYDEN: Well, Luka Camp is the only crime charged in the
8 indictment relating specifically to Brcko geographically.
9 JUDGE KWON: And taking over municipalities includes Brcko,
10 doesn't it?
11 MR. HAYDEN: Clearly, we led evidence relating to the take-over
12 of Brcko insofar as it relates to who was responsible for the crimes at
13 Luka Camp. But the only crime in the indictment relating to Brcko is
14 Luka Camp. The remaining crimes were not charged and were removed at the
15 73 bis stage.
16 JUDGE KWON: And his evidence, written evidence, contains matters
17 other than the Luka Camp itself?
18 MR. HAYDEN: His written evidence goes wider than Luka Camp, but
19 the relevance of that is establishing responsible for Luka Camp. So the
20 evidence in his statement concerning Variant A and B instructions and the
21 take-over of Brcko municipality is either direct or circumstantial
22 evidence relating to who is responsible for the establishment of
23 Luka Camp, and evidence subsequent to that temporally relates to notice
24 concerning Luka Camp and responsibility for Luka Camp.
25 JUDGE KWON: Very well.
1 [Trial Chamber confers]
2 JUDGE KWON: While the Chamber doubts the relevance of this line
3 of questions, but it may be helpful to understand the background at the
4 end of the day, we allow the question to be put, Mr. Karadzic.
5 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. Is it correct, Mr. Ristanic, that as early as in May, when the
7 conflict broke out, these villages were surrounded by hostile forces and
8 that you had no contact with them, that you were unable to send them
9 supplies of food and medicines; is that correct?
10 A. Yes, when it comes to Bukvik. But as for Cerik and
11 Bosanska Bijela, Cerik was immediately taken over - I think it was in
12 May - by the Croatian and Muslim army, and the entire population
13 expelled. The village was looted and burned down. Bosanska Bijela was a
14 majority Croat village, but it did have about one-third of Serb
15 inhabitants and the same thing happened to them. As for Bukvik, it
16 remained surrounded in May, June, July and August, without any contact
17 with the outside world, except for occasional contacts through the
18 Croatian side which made it possible for meals to be delivered and some
19 small matters like that. We had no control over the population in that
20 area, and we could do nothing to help them.
21 Q. But you felt a certain responsibility and concern for them?
22 A. Yes, of course. They were members of our nation. They were in
23 trouble. They had no water, no electricity, no food, no medicine. They
24 used whatever they had over those four months.
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Just for the record, "Serika" is
1 written with a "C," not with an "S."
2 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. Those who managed to escape as refugees to the Serb part of
4 Brcko, did they make the situation in Brcko worse, in economic and
5 psychological terms?
6 A. Yes, they were a burden for the civilian authorities in town for
7 several reasons. First of all, they were constantly demanding that their
8 fellow villagers who had been left behind be helped, and they were also
9 looking for accommodation in the town itself. And they would often break
10 into other people's houses which they thought should be theirs. There
11 were even incidents when they expelled local Muslims from their homes so
12 that they could move in. The situation was very difficult, and it was a
13 great burden for all of us who were there in the town. So we had
14 refugees and displaced persons from the municipality of Brcko, people
15 from Cerik and Bijela who were already in the town. Then we had those
16 who managed to break through the encirclement, a few families, and there
17 were also people from other areas such as Smoluca, Bosanski Brod, and so
18 on, refugees who had already been put up in the town. We had to provide
19 for all of them, and it's well known that there was no electricity in
20 town over those four or five months and we were short of everything. So
21 it was very complicated, very difficult to prevent an outbreak of
22 disease, to bring in water.
23 When you have a situation where you have thousands of
24 refrigerators and freezers left without electricity in abandoned houses,
25 this all had to be cleaned up to prevent an outbreak of disease. We had
1 about 10.000 refugees at one point. We had to provide accommodation for
2 all of them. The army wanted to mobilise all those people, but they all
3 tried to evade the call-up. So the situation was extremely confused, and
4 there was constant pressure to help their people who had been left behind
5 in Bukvik, either to get them out or to establish communication with
6 them. This was a great burden. Many matters were pushed aside so that
7 these issues could be dealt with on a daily basis.
8 Q. Thank you. And was there a threat of individual incidents of
9 revenge by these unfortunate people who had lost family members and so
11 A. Yes, there were such incidents. I can't describe any particular
12 incident right now, but some were quite serious, especially after the
13 fall of Bukvik. That gave rise to enormous problems.
14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
15 May this document be admitted into evidence?
16 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
17 Now I understand that you will come to the real issues.
18 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D1573, Your Honours.
19 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
20 Q. Mr. Ristanic, conflicts were avoided. The army put you up first
21 in a barracks, then in a village. Then you came back to the town. And
22 in this statement of 1998, you were asked whether the War Presidency of
23 the municipality could manage or control the police. This was in 22237,
24 on pages 14 and 15. In your response, you said that you could not
25 control the police, but that you could talk to the chief of police, who
1 was a member of the War Presidency. Did you want to say that even under
2 those conditions, it was the MUP which controlled the police, not the
3 civilian authorities?
4 A. Yes. Well, at that time the Ministry of the Interior Affairs had
5 not yet been established, it wasn't yet functioning properly, especially
6 in Brcko. You have to know that when the bridges fell and the conflict
7 broke out, the police station was abandoned. The Muslim and the Croatian
8 officers left the police station and took with them all the cars and
9 equipment. All that was left was an empty building with tables and
10 chairs. We had only the building, and we were willing to establish a
11 police force. There were some dozen active-duty policemen left and some
12 reserve police officers who we managed to gather, but we could not
13 actually manage what was going on in the police station. We could only
14 make suggestions. We found it difficult to cope in that situation.
15 I have to say that in the police station, there were one or two
16 men who belonged to -- well, they were practically soldiers, but they
17 were at the police station, acting as supervisors of a kind. They were
18 exercising control. They couldn't be thrown out. And it was very
19 difficult to clean up the police station from these intruders, and that's
20 what the situation was.
21 Q. On this same page, you speak about the paramilitary and the
22 supervisors, and you say that they even beat and arrested the
23 Public Security Station chief. You even say that you, yourself, were
24 arrested and that the civilian authorities in Brcko was suspended
25 altogether at the time. You didn't use this particular term, but you can
1 find it in other documents.
2 A. Yes, that's true, and that did not only involve the chief. There
3 were people who wanted to establish some semblance of control, but,
4 however, when those soldiers appeared, they would create problems. They,
5 on two occasions, slapped the chief on the face, and then it escalated in
6 July when a unit arrived in order to help. That was the time when I and
7 the chief of the brigade were arrested. So there was a whole host of
8 problems, and I really don't know how we managed to survive. After that,
9 things slightly improved.
10 Q. Thank you. We have to slow down and make pauses, and try to
11 speak as slower as possible.
12 Now, this increased number of reserve police officers, between 50
13 and 100 or maybe even 200, can one say that this surplus was actually a
14 sort of deserters in disguise who, under the protection of the
15 paramilitary, evaded going to the military and to the front-line?
16 A. Well, the police work at the time was easier. That was the case
17 until a problem would arise, because, then in May, all of them were sent
18 to the front-line and the police forces were re-subordinated to the army.
19 Q. Thank you. According to your experience and what we can see from
20 police reports, whenever they purged the police, they would send them
21 back to war units of the former JNA and later of the Army of
22 Republika Srpska because they were not suitable for police work?
23 A. As we discussed earlier, that was the result of this kind of rift
24 between the military and the civilian authorities, and we can consider
25 police to be part of civilian authorities. As soon as law and order were
1 restored, and when the police stations started working properly and the
2 curfew was introduced, an incident sparked, and I think that a crisis was
3 virtually invented in order to send those people to the army, whereas at
4 the same time members of the military were just walking around without
5 getting involved in combat.
6 Q. Thank you. On page 109 of the 2003 statement - it's 22238 - you
7 confirmed that the most powerful force in Brcko were paramilitary
8 formations. Do you stand by that?
9 A. Yes, at the very beginning and in town proper. As far as the
10 line -- the front-line, as we called it, was confirmed, there were no
11 paramilitaries there. They mainly operated inside the town, behind the
12 backs of combatants, and in a certain way, never mind how they
13 represented themselves, they were causing problems and exerting pressure
14 on the authorities.
15 Q. Thank you. Now, you were pushed aside by the JNA. Then you were
16 returned to the town. And from that moment on, you heard that a portion
17 of the population -- or, rather, that some people were detained at Luka.
18 This is what you heard some two or three days after your return. You
19 heard about this prison in Luka. Is it true that at that time, you
20 didn't know who set up the Luka Camp?
21 A. That's correct, nobody came for work and said, We establish this.
22 Everybody was trying to lay the blame on somebody else.
23 Q. Is it true that some people who found shelter in the barracks
24 left in various directions, and is it true that among the detainees,
25 there were also Muslim combatants and Croatian combatants, and is it true
1 that they had been brought there, according to some rumours, due to their
2 possible engagement?
3 A. For the most part, that was an excuse for setting up the camp.
4 Allegedly, they found people having arrived for a sniper rifle, or knew
5 that somebody was a member of Green Berets or had undergone training. So
6 we heard such stories about quite a few people who were camped in the
7 camp for those reasons. Now, whether that was true or not, I don't know.
8 Q. Thank you. Is it true that there were stories circulating
9 around, and maybe it was true, that the SDA had sent people from Brcko to
10 be trained by the MUP of Croatia and that were also people from Brcko in
11 the National Guard Corps of Croatia and other Croatian units during the
12 war in Croatia?
13 A. Well, that was a story that was being told around town for a long
14 time. When the war in Croatia ended in November or December 1991, there
15 was information and education, particularly when it came to people from
16 villages. Everybody knew that they had been involved in fighting and
17 they then came back. However, these things could not be verified and
18 checked. These were stories, and that some formations had been trained
19 in Croatia, formations made up of Muslim and Croats. In contacts with
20 the Military Counter-Intelligence Service, it just happened that in 1991,
21 I, myself, heard some information, because at the same time I was in the
22 reserve force and I knew people from those circles, from the
23 Counter-Intelligence Military Service. I heard, since they infiltrated
24 the communities of the Serbs, the Croats and the Muslims equally, they
25 had information to that effect. And, you know, these people from
1 counter-intelligence services did not trust us Serbs either, so
2 incidentally I heard about certain formations that were in the process of
3 being established, composed of men who had undergone training. I can't
4 give you any specific names, but they probably can. When I say "they,"
5 I'm referring to the former Counter-Intelligence Service of the Yugoslav
7 Q. Thank you. In your testimony in Bosnia on pages 88 and 51, in
8 response to a question whether these units were seldom involved in war
9 operations - that's 1D3899 - and that they exerted pressure on the
10 Public Security Station, and that they even had an ambition to establish
11 their own stations, you said that that could have involved the execution
12 of certain people. On page 119, you even said that they wanted to have
13 their own stamp to act totally independently, to have their petty cash,
14 to have their bank account, that they organised the work of the police
15 station, and to influence the political leadership, in terms of total
16 control, and there were attacks on the Public Security Station?
17 A. Yes, that is correct, that is correct, and that was a major
18 problem. For the whole of these three months, we struggled with those
19 problems. The pressure was enormous. They wanted to draw us into this
20 whole story, and that involved us civilians, first of all. But we did
21 not help that in any way whatsoever. We always directed them and
22 referred them to first the JNA and later the Army of Republika Srpska.
23 Their ambition was that unless they cannot take part in managing all the
24 affairs, to at least have some of their people installed in police
25 structures and probably army structures and, of course, civilian
2 Q. Thank you. In your 1998 statement, 22237, on pages 21 and 22,
3 you say that it was impossible to establish who set up the camp. Unlike
4 collection centres in the Barracks Lazare, and transportation company and
5 elsewhere, where the refugees found shelter, who, unlike those centres,
6 set up the prison in Luka? You say that although it was impossible to
7 determine who it was, it was clear that somebody did that?
8 A. That's correct. Despite our persistent requests for identifying
9 the persons running the show behind the scenes, we could not get this
10 information. The people from the military pretended not to know anything
11 about that. They said that they were completely uninformed. So it was a
12 kind of vicious circle.
13 Q. Thank you. In 2003, statement 22238, on page 58 - I'm going to
14 read the question in English:
15 [In English] "Did the SDS Brcko support these red berets, these
16 training officers, if you like, these red berets, or, in any way,
17 logistically, or for funding, or through salaries, or staff like that?"
18 "Ristanic: No, for us, they didn't exist before the war. That
19 was strictly a military unit under the command of JNA. They had nothing
20 to do with us. They were not our people, so we did not have reason to be
21 satisfied or not satisfied."
22 [Interpretation] And then on page 59, it's also being confirmed
23 that they were not members of your party. They were Serbs, though, but
24 you say the SDS was not the only entity in charge of Serbs, so you cannot
25 equate the SDS with the Serbs; is that correct?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. On page 118 of the same statement, you say the following --
3 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. --
4 MR. HAYDEN: I can't find the reference to the passage
5 Mr. Karadzic was just reading out. Perhaps the page numbers are not
7 THE ACCUSED: 59, I suppose. The question was:
8 "When you say they weren't our people, you were referring to the
9 trainers, themselves? When you say 'they weren't our people,' who do you
10 refer to?"
11 "Ristanic: They were not members of our party.'
12 "Q. Who wasn't a member of your party?"
13 "Ristanic: Those people who participated in the training."
14 JUDGE KWON: Have you found the page?
15 MR. HAYDEN: Page 56, Your Honour.
16 JUDGE KWON: E-court page.
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I'm sorry.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I would like to have this document
19 in B/C/S. The only version I have in front of me is in English. Could
20 that be done, please?
21 MR. HAYDEN: There isn't a B/C/S transcript of the 2003
23 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] With your leave, I am then going to
24 read it out:
25 [In English] "Right, but they were Serbs."
1 "Ristanic: But SDS wasn't the only one in charge of Serbs. And
2 you cannot put the sign of equality between all Serbs and SDS."
3 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
4 Q. Is that your view?
5 A. Yes, it is.
6 Q. And then on page 118:
7 [In English] "Ristanic: It's only a matter of fear and
8 cowardice. It is one thing that is very important at that time. The
9 people from Red Berets controlled that police station in every aspect.
10 They were the actual supervisors for the police because they -- of their
11 will. Whenever we were trying to do something, they would make a mess in
12 town. They would beat --"
13 JUDGE KWON: Do we have that passage? What's the actual page or
14 e-court page? What do you have, Mr. Karadzic?
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I have page 118. It needn't be the
16 same page in e-court; maybe one before or after that. Maybe it's a page
17 after that. I'm going to be tendering this entire statement, so then
18 perhaps it will be easier. Two pages down, perhaps. 117, maybe.
19 Mr. Stojanovic will find that.
20 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
21 Q. The question of fear and cowardice, are you trying to say that
22 there was no one in Brcko who could have opposed these men?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Now I'm going to read out to you what a victim stated. That is
25 1D3890, paragraph 41, on page 14:
1 [In English] "Both the prisoners and the guards equally feared
2 Goran. Whenever Goran entered the camp, the guards scurried away like
3 mice from a cat. Goran was the main man and did whatever he wanted."
4 [Interpretation] As for your experience with Goran Jelisic, was
5 it like this, that even guards had to run away from him like mice from a
7 A. I don't know about that, but I know that everyone avoided any
8 kind of contact with him. How do I put this? Being so arrogant and
9 being on your own, that was quite illogical, so people did not know --
10 actually, maybe if he were on his own, maybe somebody would have stood up
11 to him. But it was a big secret, who was actually standing behind him.
12 Q. Thank you. Just a moment, please. You say that some people were
13 released, and you said that you managed, in a way, through Veselic to
14 send investigators, police inspectors, to Luka and to start working
15 there; right?
16 A. Correct.
17 Q. Did that result in an increased number of releases from Luka?
18 A. Yes, that is my knowledge.
19 Q. Did these inspectors manage to talk to a considerable number of
20 these detainees?
21 A. I think so. That's why they were there.
22 Q. We had a witness here who was not protected, Gasi, who had spent
23 10 days in that camp. He was released with the help of some Serbs who
24 belonged to Captain Dragan. On two occasions, he was told that he was
25 there by mistake, once when he was taken out and the second time they
1 said that it seemed that the Serb police had made a mistake. Were there
2 such cases when they were looking for one person and then they would
3 capture the wrong person by mistake? Do you have any such knowledge?
4 A. I don't, I really don't.
5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. 118 a moment ago was
6 actually 111 and 112, when Mr. Ristanic says that this was a question of
7 fear and cowardice, and that was important, and these people had the
8 police station under their control as well in every way. 22238, page 111
9 and 112.
10 Yes, we have it:
11 [In English] "It's only a matter fear and cowardice."
12 [Interpretation] And then the next page, please. The rest is on
13 the next page.
14 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. Further on in your statement of 1998, you say, on page 22, that
16 is, 65 ter 22237 -- we don't need to call it up. Everybody can have a
17 look at that. You say that you did not know Jelisic personally and that
18 you did not have any communication with him, but you do remember that he
19 was in some escort when you toured villages. Was he a regular policeman
20 or did he squeeze his way through into the reserve police corps that came
21 into being as they fled from the front-line?
22 A. He was not a regular policeman. You know, at the time people
23 came with all sorts of uniforms. They put rank insignia on them and this
24 and that. People were trying to represent themselves in different ways.
25 They were -- there were some people who were not actually in the police,
1 but who were sort of messing around some check-points and whatever. But
2 as for him, I do not know --
3 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not understand the end of
4 the sentence.
5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
6 JUDGE KWON: Could you repeat your last sentence, where you
8 "But as for him, I do not know --"
9 The interpreters couldn't understand the remainder of your
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] As for him, he certainly was not a
12 policeman, not a regular policeman.
13 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. Did you say that you do not know how he managed to get into the
15 ranks of the reserve police?
16 A. I said that in that context. There were many who came with
17 different kinds of uniforms, most of them police uniforms, and they
18 incorporated themselves in all of that. And as I said, some people were
19 at the police station, others were freelancers, and so on and so forth.
20 I really don't know how he found his way there.
21 Later on, I mean, it's only important if you know something at
22 that point in time. Everything I learned five or ten years later is
24 Q. Thank you. But at the time, it's not only that you did not know
25 how come he was there, but you also did not know -- or, rather, could you
1 have known what was going on in the prison, itself, except for rumours
2 and fears? Could one know, could one have insight into what was going on
4 A. For the most part, these were rumours, when people went there to
5 try to get someone out, and so on and so forth. However, specifically,
6 officially, no, up until the very end, almost. We heard that they were
7 mistreating them, in the sense of forcing them to sing, and so on and so
8 forth. That could be heard from time to time, but we learned only later
9 about what was going on there. Even to this day, I do not know how many
10 people lost their lives in Luka, itself.
11 Q. Thank you. Then you found out -- or, rather, did you find out --
12 no, or you did find out that a group of special forces people was coming
13 and that they were supposed to take care of the situation. Did you learn
14 that that was at my request, sent to Milan Panic, prime minister of
15 Yugoslavia? I had requested that we be assisted in resolving these
16 crimes and problems related to the paramilitaries.
17 A. I had this information from a person who had come with these men,
18 that this person was sent by the federal government at your request. I
19 was pleased because we were sending requests to the top leadership, and
20 once and for all we would get rid of these people and everything that was
21 going on by virtue of that.
22 Q. Thank you. In your statement of 2011, on page 24 you say that
23 problems in the police were -- you're actually explaining what kind of
24 problems investigators had in the police from the fifth line onwards.
25 There was no police station, basically, and later on it was established,
1 and the process was a very slow one, that this was impeded by those
2 persons with different berets. Actually, these berets, were they
3 self-imposed or was this an official group? Had they abandoned the ranks
4 of the army? Had they joined the urban forces? What was your
5 understanding of these berets?
6 A. Well, look, formerly they were members of the military, in
7 general terms. As for all of these troublesome persons, we call them the
8 Red Berets. The vast majority of them were honourable and good men, but
9 obviously this "Red Beret" was a kind of synonym for an elite unit. You
10 know what the times were like. Whoever had an American uniform and a red
11 beret was a big fighter, and there was no substance there whatsoever.
12 Many who were not fighters at all joined these units. They were there in
13 the army, and then they acted independently. They wore these berets.
14 And when I say "independently," I'm not referring to individuals, just
15 one or two individuals. Usually, these were groups that had a stronghold
16 within the army, itself, because they played a double game. So this red
17 beret, this cap, it didn't mean anything, ultimately. But to all of us,
18 when we spoke about paramilitaries, we said it was the Red Berets, but
19 formally we did not have a unit called the Red Berets in Brcko.
20 Q. Thank you. In your statement of 2011, on page 23, you say that
21 this late Veselic -- actually, the question says in the previous
22 interview you said that it was necessary to have Veselic dismissed. I
23 cannot really see it here. And you say that it was only the minister who
24 could have dismissed him; is that right?
25 A. Yes, exactly. The day that he got a decision from the
1 Ministry of the Interior, he fell under the jurisdiction of the ministry,
2 so, practically, we could make proposals to that effect, but it was the
3 minister of the interior who had the final say or, rather, the chief of
4 the Security Services Centre, that was the higher level, and then came
5 the Ministry of the Interior.
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could we have 65ter 8467 briefly,
8 The Brcko Public Security Station, the Serb Republic of
9 Bosnia-Herzegovina. That means that it was the month of July, at the
10 latest, or the first week of August. I hope that there is a translation,
12 It says here that the Public Security Station employed 86
13 operatives before the bridges were destroyed, and then the station
14 stopped working because only a few employees reported for work. And that
15 went on until the Territorial Defence took over the station.
16 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
17 Q. Was that the way it was?
18 A. I think that's the way it was. I don't know.
19 As for this number, well, that would be it, roughly, because in
20 peacetime there were about 100 people there, 120, 130. Eighty were
21 policemen, and all the rest were administrative staff.
22 Q. Thank you. It says here that a small number of Serb employees
23 were asked to come in to establish a proper police station. Did the
24 Muslims and the Croats do that, and Rahic and -- what was the other one
1 A. Brcko Ravne. As far as I know, yes.
2 Q. In the third third, it says that it was very obvious that they
3 were poorly equipped and poorly trained, and that reserve police officers
4 were often found on the front-lines; that is to say, they were often on
5 the front-line, itself. And it says so far, especially during the first
6 days of the operation at the Public Security Station, there was a serious
7 number of persons present who were introducing themselves as inspectors,
8 chiefs, et cetera, and that that created a problem. Also, they treated
9 the employees of the public station in a brazen manner, and in this way
10 they wanted to provide scope for realising their true intentions;
11 robbery, and so on and so forth. Is that your view as well?
12 A. Yes.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
14 Can we have the next page, because we need to see the
15 certification as well.
16 [In English] Next page, please. The previous in English -- or
17 next in English.
18 [Interpretation] The next one in Serbian too. Yes.
19 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Do you see here that a proposal is being made, in terms of
21 measures aimed at reinforcing the Public Security Station, reorganisation
22 of management, appointment of new chiefs, with a view to improving
23 discipline and sense of responsibility, to remove all persons from the
24 reserve police who have been earlier charged with criminal acts, and
25 cancel all unauthorised positions and assign persons who have the proper
1 training for certain jobs, to get full support by the War Presidency and
2 assistance to the station's management for the realisation of the
3 mentioned and other planned measures?
4 And further on, it says that:
5 "In order to lift the operative activities to a higher level and
6 to remove self-appointed inspectors, appropriate measures for improvement
7 of co-operation with military security, neighbouring SJBs and the MUP of
8 Serbia should be taken."
9 Are you aware of this set of measures that was proposed?
10 A. I haven't seen this document so far, but it's a fact that that's
11 the way it was. I don't know when this document was drafted, but I
12 remember some things in it. I remember we were asked to withdraw the
13 police from the security. They were securing the municipal building, the
14 post office, and so on. I remember that. And I mostly agree with this,
16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. May it be admitted into
18 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
19 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D1574, Your Honours.
20 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation].
21 Q. And then Mr. Milorad Davidovic turned up with a group of some 15
22 specially-trained special officers in Brcko, special police officers. Do
23 you remember that?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. On page 26 of the statement from 2011, you talk about this from
1 line 8 forward, and that's 65 ter 23193. And page 26, you say you didn't
2 have enough equipment:
3 "We were constantly getting promises that this would be resolved
4 step by step. And what happened in the end -- which in the end happened,
5 but not under the Veselic's administration. It was, rather, a chain of
6 circumstances, because a special headed by Mico Davidovic, who came to
8 Are you referring to Bijeljina or Zvornik when you say that he
9 was doing something?
10 A. Yes, it was from him I heard about Zvornik. But as for Bijevci
11 [as interpreted], they -- as for the people of Bijeljina, they resisted
12 his attempts to do something. But in Zvornik, he arrested the
13 Yellow Wasps, or at least that's what he said. I don't know how much
14 truth there is in that.
15 Q. Thank you. So that very soon, some ringleaders of these
16 paramilitary units were arrested. Do you remember that event? You were
17 at a meeting after which, in front of the municipal building, there was
18 an arrest?
19 A. It was in front of the police building, because
20 Assemblyman Vojinovic and I were attending a meeting at the police
21 station in late July or maybe early August - I can't be sure - and
22 suddenly a man burst in. I happened to know him because although we
23 didn't know each other personally, I knew him by sight, because he was a
24 policeman and he was married to my wife's sister. They -- he was at --
25 attended a Police Academy with somebody I knew. So then I realised who
1 this man might be, and he said that he had been sent there to bring in
2 some order. And I and the late Vojinovic were very happy to hear this.
3 We left and went back to the Forestry, this building, where we were
4 accommodated. And at that point in time, a van arrived. It was only
5 later that we found out what happened. Then they went out, met two or
6 three local members of the so-called Red Berets, and they came to ask
7 them what they were doing there. An argument broke out. They arrested
8 those men. They were beaten up and locked up, and then they left for
9 Bijeljina. We didn't know all those details, but there was a lot of fear
10 in the air, fear that a conflict might break out. I said that I wouldn't
11 go to Bijeljina, that I would stay there, even at the cost of my life,
12 because I wanted to solve, once and for all, this problem of the police
13 station and people being maltreated. And Vojinovic said to me, Well,
14 they'll beat you up. And I said, Well, whatever will be will be. And
15 then two members of those Red Berets - and I use the term conditionally
16 only because they were wearing red berets on their heads - they
17 burst into the Forestry building, pointing their automatic rifles at us,
18 and they asked for me. There were four of us inside at the time. And I
19 said, I'm the one you're looking for. And they said, We have been
20 ordered to bring you in to the police station. I asked, Why? They said,
21 We don't know. Those are our orders. I wanted to use my car but they
22 wouldn't let me. They --
23 Q. Could you please slow down so that every word enters the
25 A. I then asked my secretary, since there was no one I could call
1 and the garrison commander was absent on that day - he was attending a
2 funeral, so we couldn't turn to him - so I said, Please call the local
3 priest and tell him I've been taken away. Let him try to use his
4 authority. Let him come there and try to dissuade these people from any
5 dishonourable intentions.
6 On the road, I came across another member of the War Presidency.
7 He was the president of the High Court in Bijeljina. He asked me where I
8 was going, and I said, Well, you see I've been arrested. I don't know
9 why. Maybe they think I stole something. Would you come with me? And
10 he came with me. He said he would. He came with me. And for some 600
11 metres, we were conducted through the town with rifle barrels pointed at
12 our backs. We were brought to the plateau in front of the police
13 station, where there was some 200 or 300 men, well armed, wearing various
14 uniforms and various colours of berets. There was a self-propelled
15 machine-gun, a sort of smaller tank, and suddenly there were some
16 screaming and yelling as if they had captured an important commander on
17 the Muslim side, and then they wanted to lynch us. And we were lucky,
18 because among these men there were two or three who knew us well and
19 prevented the lynching. We were taken into the police station, and there
20 we came across a duty officer who was in a small office -- or, rather, we
21 saw that the chief of staff of the brigade had also been locked up there.
22 And I saw members of those berets - and, again, I use the term
23 conditionally - who were walking around, and they were very angry because
24 their men had been arrested. They wanted to execute us. I asked them
25 why they had arrested us, and they said, You will be hostages until our
1 brothers are released. I asked the chief of staff, I said, Well,
2 Milorad, what are you doing here? I'm not important, but how come you're
3 here? These are men from the 1st Bosnian Brigade. And then I saw in the
4 lobby battalion commanders who were local Serbs arriving. They were
5 members of the 1st Posavina Brigade, and they didn't pay any attention to
6 us. I found all this very suspicious, so I asked those men who were
7 pointing their rifles at us whether I could use the phone. And they
8 said, Yes. So I called up a Colonel Ilic, the chief of staff in
9 Bijeljina, who said there was nothing he could do to help us. And I saw
10 that we had been sacrificed or perhaps that we were simply pawns in
11 somebody's game. The commander was absent, the commandeer had been
12 beaten up and arrested. Others had been beaten up and arrested.
13 So I broke off the conversation and I insisted on negotiating
14 with Mico Davidovic. And then they -- some 20 kilometres away out of
15 town, they met him, and they said they were going to kill us all. And he
16 said, You can kill them all, but you won't leave the town alive. He gave
17 them a dead-line. He said they had to leave town by noon the next day.
18 I didn't know what they had said in that conversation, but I understood
19 by their actions that the negotiations had been in our favour, not
20 theirs. I asked whether we would be set free, and they said, Yes, yes,
21 you will be released. And then I left town and went to Bijeljina. I
22 removed myself from that place. And when I came back in the meantime,
23 they had left, and then the situation calmed down. This was when the
24 corps of that unit was broken up. The unit -- or, rather, the -- or,
25 rather, individuals from that unit had been responsible for the problems.
1 And then I met a cousin of mine, and I asked him, Why did you
2 come to the police station when you were deployed on the front-line? And
3 he said, Well, they came to us and they said that the people of Bijeljina
4 had taken over the police station. And I said, Yes, well, they are
5 members of our people. It wasn't the Green Berets. And he said, I don't
6 know, that's what we were told. And all of this to me looked like some
7 sort of coup and perhaps even the front-line could fall and the other
8 side take over the town. I assumed that all of this might have been part
9 of a game. It was quite senseless, but this was the last attempt of
10 those paramilitaries to do something major of that kind. Fortunately,
11 they were thwarted, and the situation was resolved to a large extent.
12 And it should have been resolved before, but better late than never.
13 Q. Thank you very much. Did these events influence Goran Jelisic,
14 and did he disappear from Brcko before or after this event? Do you know
15 what happened to him?
16 A. I think he left town long before this. I think he stopped
17 turning up in town perhaps a month or a month and a half before this.
18 Before this, some others came, because these bands and these
19 paramilitaries didn't really like each other, and I think that he
20 actually had to go away because he was afraid of a stronger unit.
21 Q. What was the situation of the prison in Luka?
22 A. Well, this prison was closed the same way it was opened. I
23 really don't know, I couldn't tell you the dates, but they started taking
24 people to Batkovici [Realtime transcript read in error "Batajnica"],
25 which was a collection centre in Bijeljina, and I believe many people
1 were taken there from that collection centre. And then sometime in June,
2 I think -- well, I can't remember exactly when it was closed. I don't
3 recall the details.
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] The name is Batkovici, not
6 Q. Batkovici was a regular prison for prisoners of war under the
7 supervision of the Red Cross; is that correct?
8 A. Yes, that's what I know about it. I was never there. I don't
9 know who guarded that camp, but many people from Brcko were there.
10 Q. Thank you. In your statement of 2011, on page 40, you say that
11 the authorities did not conceal anything, that you demanded that records
12 be kept of all those who were killed, and that this should be documented
13 so that prosecutions could take place. You say on page 43 that:
14 "When we found out that this was going on, we asked that the
15 police identify each person and initiate the procedure. I don't know
16 when the court in Brcko and the Prosecutor's Office were established, but
17 some criminal reports were filed, and so on."
18 Is this correct?
19 A. Yes, yes, this is in line with what I said. This is correct.
20 Q. Well, let us now compare our tragic statistics. Would you say
21 that the number of Serbs and non-Serbs killed in Brcko was balanced, more
22 or less?
23 A. Well, recently some statistics were published, showing that these
24 numbers were more or less equal. This is some sort of independent
25 statistic showing how many people belonging to military units were
1 killed, how many civilians. And according to these statistics, one might
2 say that. Of course, we won't know the real situation until the lists of
3 missing persons are put in order.
4 Q. Thank you very much. But from your statement in 2008, you were
5 asked whether there was communication between the SDS and the
6 War Presidency of Brcko at republican level, and you say there was no
7 communication, that at Pale you contacted the government directly, the
8 president of the Assembly, the prime minister of the president of the
9 country, not the SDS. So if anything had to be done in writing, that was
10 how it was done.
11 I have to say that the role of the War Presidency made sense
12 until the Executive Board was set up, the Executive Committee, and that's
13 when the local government started functioning; is that correct?
14 A. Well, that was the date I took to be the official date, although
15 the 17th of May is the date when the War Presidency approved the
16 programme of the new Executive Committee, and the decision was made in
17 the afternoon. So we might consider that the 17th of May is the date,
18 although the formation of the executive began on the next day, of the
19 Executive Board.
20 THE ACCUSED: [No interpretation]
21 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Karadzic. What did you say?
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Is it time for a break?
23 JUDGE KWON: Yes. We'll have a break for 45 minutes and resume
24 at 1.35.
25 --- Luncheon recess taken at 12.49 p.m.
1 --- On resuming at 1.37 p.m.
2 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Karadzic, I take it that you do not have many
3 items to cover now. You can conclude in half an hour? Yes, thank you.
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Maybe even earlier.
5 Can we now have 65 ter 7894. It's already admitted into
7 Can we have 1D3878, please, 1D3878. Let's just take a glance at
8 it in order to see how Brcko looked like and who got hold of it. 1D3878.
9 I don't know if we have a Serbian version, but this is a Decree
10 on District Military Courts in the Territory of the Croatian Community of
12 Can we now turn to page 2.
13 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. Do you agree that Brcko is included in the Croatian Community of
15 Herceg-Bosna or, more specifically, the municipal of Ravno?
16 A. Judging by this, the answer is yes.
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] May this be admitted into evidence?
18 JUDGE KWON: What does it say about, Mr. Karadzic?
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, Excellency, I am accused of
20 taking over Brcko. In fact, Brcko was divided into three municipalities,
21 and everybody held to their part. And the Croatian part of the Brcko
22 municipality was integrated into the Croatian Community of Herceg-Bosna.
23 JUDGE KWON: Very well. That will be marked for identification.
24 THE REGISTRAR: As MFI D1575, Your Honours.
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we now have 1D3879.
1 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
2 Q. Do we agree, Mr. Ristanic, that in Brcko there existed and was
3 active, even before the blowing up of the bridge, the 108th Brigade of
4 the HVO, and that the Croatian Army was deployed there even earlier?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Now, you see here on the 28th of October, weapons and ammunition
7 and uniforms and boots are being sent to the 108th HVO Brigade deployed
8 in Brcko; is that correct?
9 A. Yes.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] May this be admitted?
11 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
12 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D1576, Your Honours.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we now have 1D3869.
14 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. Is this a pass of the Brcko Garrison, Armed Forces of the Serbian
16 Republic of BH, issued in the name of Mehmed Hodzic, allowing him to go
17 to Germany with his ID on the 7th of July, 1992?
18 A. Yes. These kind of passes did exist.
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] May this be admitted?
20 JUDGE KWON: Exhibit D1577.
21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we now have 1D3870. Serbian
22 version, 72. This is a translation -- I mean page 2, that's the Serbian
24 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Is this a pass for Alma Fehartbegovic, allowing her to move
1 around with her personal ID?
2 A. Yes, but it's not clear. I see "MUP Krajina" here.
3 Q. Yes. And the military post stamp is here?
4 A. Obviously, this is the military post using the preset form of the
5 MUP Krajina, but the military post did affix their stamp.
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
7 Can this be admitted into evidence?
8 JUDGE KWON: Both are original, Mr. Hayden? The ERN numbers are
10 MR. HAYDEN: I'll have to have a look at that and get back to
11 you, Mr. President.
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we have now 1D3872. Number 1
13 is the Serbian version and number 2 is the translation.
14 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. Now, this one comes from the municipality of Brcko, 23rd of May,
16 1992. You issued a pass to a Muslim called Sidik Husic, ID card
17 number 41/9/91?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. War Presidency of Brcko municipality, and this pass is allowing
20 him to pass without being stopped?
21 A. Well, that was the purpose of a pass.
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
23 Can this be admitted?
24 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. --
25 MR. HAYDEN: Yes, Mr. President. These passes were provided to
1 the OTP by the BiH government in 1995, and they came with the
2 translation, the handwritten translations.
3 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. So there's no problem in admitting them
4 in one exhibit?
5 MR. HAYDEN: That's fine.
6 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
7 So 1D3870 shall be admitted Exhibit D1578, and 1D3872,
8 Exhibit D1579.
9 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
10 Q. Another document from this series is 1D3875, and I'm calling up
11 this document because there's your signature on it. 1D3875.
12 Is this your signature? On the 8th of May, you issue permission
13 to Abdulah Muharemovic a pass allowing him to move within the
14 municipality and out of the municipality.
15 A. Yes, this is an identical form like the previous one, and this
16 should be my signature. I think it is.
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
18 May this be admitted?
19 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
20 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit D1580, Your Honours.
21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] This is going to suffice.
22 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. Mr. Ristanic, these passes were issued to everyone, except those
24 who committed crimes?
25 A. Yes, yes, almost everybody who wanted to go out or move freely
1 about could apply for a pass, except for those who were being
2 investigated. You can see that the passes were issued by several
3 different institutions; the MUP, the army, the municipality, et cetera.
4 Q. But was it easier for a Muslim to go out, because he had no
5 obligation towards an army, than for a Serb, who had an obligation to the
6 Army of Republika Srpska?
7 A. The Serbs had problems in that respect because they had to seek
8 permission and clearance from the army, and, as a rule, he had to give
9 the pass back. But as I said, the military conscripts were issued with
10 passes exclusively by the Draft Office and no one else.
11 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
12 May this be admitted? Oh, it's already been admitted.
13 Can we now have 18430 -- 403, 18403.
14 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. I'm not sure whether the translation has arrived, but you are
16 going to help us, I hope. Do you see that this is dated the 18th of
17 July, which is immediately before an action carried out by Davidovic and
18 his specials.
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. At the top, you see "SJB Brcko, Dragan Andan." We know who that
21 is, because he's the one who was reporting from that area. He says that
22 there are 170 police officers involved in combat, 40 of them from Lopare
23 and 92 from Zvornik. Was that a major obstacle for carrying out regular
24 police work?
25 A. Of course it was, but this was a priority, and that is why they
1 were re-subordinated to the army and deployed along the front-line.
2 Q. A little down in the letter, it says that in Semberija and
3 Majevica, where there are no combat activities, the situation is pregnant
4 and burdened with problems caused by plundering by paramilitary
5 formations. Do you recall that this Mr. Andan was promoted to the
6 position of acting chief of the Security Services Centre?
7 A. Yes, I remember that.
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can this be admitted for
10 JUDGE KWON: Yes, this will be marked for identification.
11 THE REGISTRAR: As MFI D1581, Your Honours.
12 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
13 Q. Mr. Ristanic, did you have information that rumours were
14 circulating, and various misinformation or information, that the flats of
15 retired army officers and prominent Serbs in Brcko were marked, as
16 recommended by the Croatian minister of defence, Martin Spegelj, and they
17 were marked for execution?
18 A. Well, there were cases like that, but not too many of them.
19 Q. Thank you. One more question, Mr. Ristanic. Is it true that the
20 Croatian Community occupied -- or, rather, took over their part of the
21 municipality, the Muslims did the same with their part, and the Serbs did
22 the same with their part, and that in Srpska Varos, which was
23 traditionally a Serbian quarter, you did that because the barracks were
24 close there; otherwise, you would have left the centre of the town?
25 A. Yes, that is correct. Initially, we did go, but we later
1 returned because the barracks was there and there was enough manpower for
2 the defence, and that is why we stayed there.
3 Q. Were there any such Muslim enclaves under our control, as they
4 did with Cerik and Bukvik, who were in the Muslim territory? Were such
5 Muslim enclaves situated in the Serbian part?
6 A. There was only one, Brezovo Polje, some 14 to 15 kilometres from
7 Brcko to Bijeljina.
8 Q. And that is where they were arming themselves near the mosque and
9 distributing weapons?
10 A. Well, there were rumours to that effect. The JNA established a
11 company of Muslims, gave them arms, and they tasked them with guarding
12 with the village in order to prevent escalation.
13 THE INTERPRETER: Could the speakers please pause between
14 questions and answer.
15 JUDGE KWON: We didn't hear the answer of the witness to the last
17 What was your answer, Mr. Ristanic? Because of the overlap, the
18 interpreters couldn't hear your answer.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I said that there was an enclave,
20 Brezovo Polje, 14 kilometres from Brcko. There were rumours that the SDA
21 tried to arm the population of that village. However, the JNA
22 established a company made up exclusively of Muslims, gave them uniforms
23 and weapons. I don't know exactly, but it remained there, as such,
24 during a certain period of war.
25 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. Can one say that the JNA only took care of who was in favour of
2 it, rather than of the ethnicity?
3 A. Well, I think that that was the logic that they followed. It is
4 well known that Brezovo Polje was practically an enclave and the people
5 there were peaceful oriented. A lot of them worked in the merchant navy
6 and they were known as people who were involved in boating and fishing.
7 Q. Mr. Ristanic, did you feel that you had taken Brcko over from
8 someone or do you feel that you only took control of what was Serbian?
9 A. Well, we didn't have that former feeling. Practically in those
10 first days, we didn't take away anything that belonged to someone else,
11 because everybody took what belonged to them, as we thought was logical.
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I am very much grateful to you, and
13 I apologise to you on behalf of the government which was unable to
14 provide protection to you at the beginning of the war.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
16 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Hayden.
17 MR. HAYDEN: Thank you, Mr. President.
18 Re-examination by Mr. Hayden:
19 Q. Mr. Ristanic, I have a few follow-up questions to today's
21 Earlier today, at the beginning of the cross-examination,
22 Mr. Karadzic took you to a line from Friday, in which you had said, with
23 reference to Luka Camp, that:
24 "He didn't listen to us."
25 And Mr. Karadzic wanted to clarify whether you were referring to
1 Mr. Jelisic or Mr. Veselic, and you said:
2 "It was taken out of context, but I was basically referring to
4 This is at transcript page 5.
5 I want to clarify now your relationship with Mr. Veselic and the
6 police. First, who appointed Mr. Veselic to the position of chief of
8 A. The War Presidency.
9 Q. And was that appointment confirmed by the Ministry of the
10 Interior? I think we've spoken about this today. Can you confirm that?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. And did you meet on a regular basis with Mr. Veselic in your
13 capacity as president of the War Presidency?
14 A. Mr. Veselic was a member of that body, he was a member of the
15 War Presidency, and we did meet. I'm not saying "regularly," but we did
17 Q. And did you issue instructions to Mr. Veselic, for example, with
18 respect to Luka Camp and with respect to the ID'ing of deceased bodies
19 that were collected by the sanitation services?
20 A. Yes. Actually, that is the agreement reached by the
21 War Presidency. It wasn't any kind of order. It was an agreement that
22 was reached by the War Presidency, a conclusion that was reached by the
23 War Presidency. And he was a member of that War Presidency, so that's
24 exactly the way it was.
25 Q. And did he implement those instructions or that agreement?
1 A. In certain parts, yes.
2 Q. And is it correct that the police, or persons, at least, in
3 police uniform, were guarding Luka Camp?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. In light of the answers to the question I've just posed, can you
6 explain what you meant when you said that Mr. Veselic did not listen to
7 you or the War Presidency?
8 A. I didn't mean generally. I meant in terms of some of our
9 individual positions, he didn't listen to us or obey us. He couldn't
10 have obeyed because the circumstances were as they were.
11 Q. There was also a discussion today about the establishment of the
12 Posavina corridor. This is at transcript page 22. And it was suggested,
13 and you agreed, that the goal of establishing a corridor did not -- was
14 not discussed, was not adopted, until wartime. Do you remember that
16 A. Yes, yes.
17 Q. In your amalgamated statement now in evidence, at Question 230,
18 which is the final page of that statement, you discuss a trip to Sarajevo
19 which occurred before May of 1992, in which you discussed certain maps
20 and the objective of the Posavina corridor. And if I can take you to a
21 similar reference in your interview of 2003. This is 65 ter 22238,
22 page 19, please.
23 And there's a reference there to this trip you made to Sarajevo,
24 that you said you thought it was in February or March. You said that the
25 leadership of the SDS was involved in those meetings, and you clarified
1 that the leadership of the SDS included Radovan Karadzic,
2 Momcilo Krajisnik - if we can turn the page to page 20 - and then you
3 state, and this is in the middle of that page:
4 "And the goal of that meeting was to find a territory through
5 which it would be possible to make a corridor or connection to Krajina."
6 Now, in light of that meeting in February or March 1992, was it
7 the case that the goal of establishing the Posavina corridor was not
8 contemplated until the conflict broke out?
9 THE ACCUSED: Objection.
10 This is misleading. It had been in the framework of conference,
11 this Cutileiro Conference, not war objective.
12 MR. HAYDEN: Mr. President, the witness is here to testify, not
13 Mr. Karadzic.
14 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
15 Please, overruled, Mr. Karadzic.
16 Have you finished your question?
17 MR. HAYDEN: Yes. The final question was: In light of the
18 excerpt in the 2003 interview, was it really the case, as the witness
19 stated today --
20 JUDGE KWON: By the way, where do you have that passage on
21 that --
22 MR. HAYDEN: And on the page 20, and it's in the middle: "At
23 that time ...," and the answer.
24 JUDGE KWON: Oh, yes.
25 MR. HAYDEN:
1 Q. Have you understood the question, Mr. Ristanic?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Are you able to answer?
4 A. I have explained that. There were discussions, but in the
5 context of peace. I just had a map once where the areas that were
6 populated by Serbs were marked and where it was possible to establish
7 some physical connection with parts of Bosnia and Herzegovina that we
8 call Krajina. Excuse me, the area around Banja Luka, behind Doboj, we
9 call that Krajina. So in peacetime conditions, because the strategic
10 goals did not exist at that point in time, the aim of that discussion was
11 that, or, actually, at the time I probably could not even remember
12 Cutileiro or a peace plan. But probably in that ethnic division of
13 Bosnia-Herzegovina in peacetime, that was the objective of that meeting,
14 if that makes things a bit clearer now.
15 Q. Thank you. Today there was discussion about events in Bukvik in
16 September of 1992. This is at transcript page 44. There was a reference
17 in one of your answers to the fact that Serbs who were moved out of
18 Bukvik returned to Brcko to take revenge. Just to clarify, Mr. Ristanic,
19 the reference to taking revenge is unrelated to the events in May and
20 June of 1992; is that right?
21 A. I think that this is a poor interpretation. I did not say
22 "revenge" anywhere, I did not use that expression. But never mind.
23 These events from September have nothing to do with what happened in May
24 1992. These are things that happened as they did. There was this
25 tragedy in Bukvik in September, and these people who were leaving had to
1 be put up somewhere, and then they did certain things, sometimes even
2 violent acts, in order to get into other people's apartments, and so on.
3 Q. You also provided evidence about your arrest in late July or
4 maybe early August, as you stated at transcript page 62 onwards, and you
5 provided a lengthy account of that arrest. I just wanted to clarify two
7 The men who arrested you or the unit who arrested you, did they
8 have anything to do with Luka Camp, to your knowledge?
9 A. It is hard to say from this distance, but perhaps some of them
10 individually, in an indirect way, but I cannot be sure.
11 Q. And was their action of arresting you in any way related to steps
12 that you may have taken with respect to either Luka Camp or other crimes
13 committed in Brcko?
14 A. At any rate, no order suited these people. They functioned
15 perfectly in chaos. That is when they were in power. Any kind of
16 establishment of order kept them out, so that was probably one of the
17 reasons. From the beginning of May until those days, we were constantly
18 fighting, if I can put it that way, for the establishment of order. Then
19 this unit came under Davidovic's command, and it was expected that they
20 would do what they ultimately did, and this practically destroyed their
21 world. They were no longer the rulers of Brcko, as it were.
22 Q. Earlier today, you discussed the communication difficulties.
23 This is at transcript pages 10 and 11. And you said, for example, that
24 sometimes you would call and the person you were seeking was not in their
25 office, and you had other difficulties in communicating with
1 republic-level leaders. Do you recall that discussion?
2 A. Yes.
3 MR. HAYDEN: If we can go to page 118 of 65 ter 22238.
4 Q. In the 2003 interview, you discussed communications with Pale; in
5 particular, Mr. Vojinovic's communication with persons such as
6 Mr. Krajisnik and Mr. Ostojic.
7 And if we can turn to page -- if we look at the bottom of that
8 excerpt there, you explain that you had immediate contacts, eye-to-eye
9 meetings, rather than documenting your communication. Can you confirm
10 that that was the case?
11 A. I'm not sure that I understand. Who did I talk to, who did I
12 communicate with face to face?
13 Q. The interviewer in the 2003 interview asked you why this was not
14 written down, your communication. And you answered, and I'll read the
15 full answer because we don't have a B/C/S transcript:
16 "Because the document that remains, and probably then an opinion
17 which was like dominant, was like time will heal certain things and it
18 will cover certain things from being. And I wasn't sure to whom I should
19 address it to, whether it be used properly or abused. Therefore, we had
20 immediate contacts, eye-to-eye meetings. And probably that's the reason
21 why within this report," that was being discussed at the time, "there is
22 nothing but the situation in general."
23 The question is: Can you confirm that that was the case, that,
24 in general, communication was eye-to-eye rather than through documents?
25 A. Well, certainly, certainly.
1 MR. HAYDEN: Turn the page to page 119.
2 Q. Here, we see the reference to Mr. Vojinovic speaking most often
3 with Mr. Krajisnik and Mr. Ostojic, and you were asked:
4 "And what, in particular, was he telling them about what was
5 happening in Brcko?"
6 And you answered:
7 "I wasn't there, but from the things he told me and in later
8 conversation when we went there together, he was straightforward, direct.
9 He didn't wrap things, hide, concerning some other things, not this, but
10 I am sure that this was also discussed."
11 Can you confirm that that is your knowledge of the nature of
12 Mr. Vojinovic's communications with Mr. Krajisnik and Mr. Ostojic?
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Objection.
14 It is being suggested here that there is knowledge involved, and
15 the witness said that that is what he believes. He said that he was not
16 there, and his conclusion is that it was that way because Dr. Beli was
17 there. The Prosecutor cannot put leading questions like this.
18 JUDGE KWON: Is it your knowledge -- could you reformulate the
20 MR. HAYDEN: There's no suggestion here, Mr. President, that it
21 was Mr. Ristanic conducting this communication. I'm inquiring about what
22 he knows of Mr. Vojinovic's communications. Mr. Vojinovic is now
23 deceased, and --
24 JUDGE KWON: Yes. You can ask --
25 MR. HAYDEN: Thank you.
1 JUDGE KWON: -- in that way.
2 MR. HAYDEN:
3 Q. You've heard the excerpt from the interview, Mr. Ristanic. Can
4 you confirm that that was what you knew about Mr. Vojinovic's
5 communication with Pale?
6 A. I knew about those communications through Mr. Vojinovic, that is
7 to say, when the two of us talked, because, in a way, we were the most
8 responsible persons there and we were affected by these problems the
9 most. That is why we drafted this together, what he should point out
10 when he sees these people. Then, as far as I can remember from this time
11 distance, I had the impression that he did talk about all of those things
12 to those persons. Now, how convincingly, and how much time he had
13 available, and how seriously he was taken, time will show that. And time
14 did show that ultimately there was an intervention, but probably when
15 conditions were created for that, probably a bit too late.
16 MR. HAYDEN: Thank you, Mr. Ristanic.
17 No more questions, Mr. President.
18 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Mr. Hayden.
19 Questioned by the Court:
20 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Ristanic, just one question from me.
21 You remember you had a discussion with Mr. Karadzic about the
22 Variant A and B document. It's at transcript page 16, line 7 -- or 6 to
23 8. Do you remember having said this, I quote:
24 "Our assessment was that what can be done should be done, and
25 what cannot be done should not be done by force"?
1 A. Yes.
2 JUDGE KWON: And that answer was followed by the question from
3 Mr. Karadzic, I quote:
4 "Do you then agree that this document, unlike other party
5 decisions, was optional, so those who wanted to could implement things,
6 but those who did not want to would not be subject to any pressuring or
7 sanctions from the party?"
8 And you answered to this effect. At one point in time, you say:
9 "It probably did not contain anything referring to consequences
10 of failure to implement it."
11 And later on, you also said:
12 "If something was agreed on at the top, we would implement it.
13 Otherwise, we wouldn't, because nothing could remain secret."
14 Do you remember that discussion?
15 A. Yes.
16 JUDGE KWON: So I was not clear whether this was -- to implement
17 the document was discretional on the part of each war presidency or each
18 municipality. Moreover, when you read out the paragraph -- or
19 Question 35 in your amalgamated statement, you said to this effect, I
20 read -- I will quote:
21 "So things were never discussed with some arguments, arguments or
22 something, because if it was the opinion of the president, then it was
23 like Holy Grail. It shouldn't be -- it was quite authoritative."
24 So having heard all these discussion and your statement, could
25 you expand on the issue as to whether that document, Variant A and B, was
1 of a mandatory nature or otherwise, if you could?
2 A. Well, it pertains to two periods. I spoke about the time before
3 the conflict broke out, that is to say, the debates within the party
4 about Variant A and Variant B. I said then that no one bore any
5 responsibility if this would not be fully carried through, and that's the
6 way it was. But when I said that the president's word was respected, I
7 meant the local president of the Serb Democratic Party. From the more
8 extensive statement, you will see that it pertained to him. This man did
9 not explain much, he did not talk much, but he decided things the way he
10 did, and we basically went by that. I never said "Holy Grail." That is
11 the translation that was put there. But I think I must have said
12 "Holy Writ," but it must be another word that would have been the
13 authentic word used at that time, but it boils down to the same thing.
14 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Mr. Ristanic. That concludes your
16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] May I? Maybe when the witness
17 leaves, actually.
18 JUDGE KWON: What is it, Mr. Karadzic?
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, I didn't manage to tender
20 those three documents, those three statements, 65 ter 22237, 22238 and
21 23193, that is 1998, 2003, 2011.
22 JUDGE KWON: In their entirety, Mr. Karadzic, or those pages you
23 dealt with?
24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I think it would be better in their
1 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Hayden.
2 MR. HAYDEN: No objection from us, Mr. President.
3 JUDGE KWON: I'm concerned about being inundated with a lot of
4 documents. All relevant parts were read and put to the witness. Do you
5 really need those documents?
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, I put certain things in my
7 own words, I did not read them verbatim, so perhaps those pages from
8 where I read this out, or, rather, recounted what was written there.
9 JUDGE KWON: So shall we admit them for reference purposes?
10 MR. HAYDEN: I guess that makes sense, bearing in mind that the
11 1998 and 2003 interviews are essentially the amalgamated statement or
12 large chunks thereof.
13 JUDGE KWON: So we'll do that, we'll admit them for references --
14 reference purposes.
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
16 JUDGE KWON: Shall we give them numbers?
17 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honour. They will be admitted as
18 Exhibits D1582 through 1584 respectively, Your Honours.
19 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
20 On behalf of the Chamber and the Tribunal, as a whole,
21 Mr. Ristanic, I would like to thank you for your coming to The Hague
22 again to give it. Please have a safe journey back home.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you, too.
24 [The witness withdrew]
25 JUDGE KWON: Is the next witness ready?
1 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Yes, Your Honour. It's Mr. Theunens.
2 JUDGE KWON: Okay, thank you.
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] May I ask for a change in my own
5 JUDGE KWON: Shall we have a break for five minutes? Yes.
6 We'll resume at half past.
7 --- Break taken at 2.24 p.m.
8 [The witness entered court]
9 --- On resuming at 2.34 p.m.
10 JUDGE KWON: Good afternoon, Mr. Theunens.
11 THE WITNESS: Good afternoon, Your Honours.
12 JUDGE KWON: If you could take the solemn declaration, please.
13 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will speak the truth, the
14 whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
15 WITNESS: REYNAUD THEUNENS
16 JUDGE KWON: Please make yourself comfortable.
17 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
18 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Karadzic, if you could make -- introduce your
20 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Excellency.
21 You already know Mr. Aleksandar Vujic, and with me, thanks to
22 your kind decision, is my advisor for military issues,
23 General Radovan Radinovic.
24 JUDGE KWON: Good afternoon, Mr. Radinovic.
25 Yes, Mr. Uertz-Retzlaff.
1 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Good afternoon, Your Honours.
2 Examination by Ms. Uertz-Retzlaff:
3 Q. Good afternoon, sir, Mr. Theunens.
4 A. Good afternoon.
5 Q. Could you please state your full name?
6 A. My name is Reynaud Theunens.
7 Q. And, Mr. Theunens, did you provide a CV to the Office of the
9 A. Yes, I did, Your Honours.
10 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Can we please have Exhibit 65 ter 11703
11 brought up onto the screen.
12 Q. Mr. Theunens, is that the CV that you provided?
13 A. Indeed, Your Honours, this is the CV I provided before my
14 departure from the OTP of the ICTY in April of 2009.
15 Q. And you said you left the ICTY, and what is your current
16 position? What are you doing nowadays?
17 A. Your Honours, since April 2009, I am the chief of the
18 Joint Mission Analysis Centre in the UNIFIL Mission in Lebanon, so the UN
19 interim force in Lebanon.
20 Q. From your CV, we see that you worked in the Military Analyst Team
21 from 2001 onwards. And while working in this MAT, Military Analyst Team,
22 did your research and analysis cover military activities of various
23 military fractions involved in the conflict in the former Yugoslavia or
24 just one?
25 A. Your Honours, my professional activities in the MAT at the OTP
1 from June 2001 to April 2009 covered JNA, i.e., SFRY armed forces, local
2 Serb forces in Croatia, local Serb forces in Bosnia-Herzegovina, as well
3 as ZNG and HV, I mean, so the Croatian forces in Croatia.
4 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: In footnote 2 -- can we see a little bit
5 more of the CV? A bit further down. We need to see the lower part.
6 Q. In footnote 2, you indicate that you testified in several cases,
7 and you specify the cases, until summer 2006. Did you testify before
8 this Tribunal after that?
9 A. Indeed, Your Honours. I'm just checking the footnote. But after
10 that, I also testified in the trial of Mr. Vojislav Seselj, in the trial
11 of Ante Gotovina, Mladen Markac and Ivan Cermak. I also testified in an
12 Appeals Hearing of Mr. Veselin Sljivancanin. And my last testimony was
13 last year, in October, in the trial of Mr. Jovica Stanisic and
14 Mr. Frenki -- or, Franko - excuse me - Simatovic.
15 Q. And did you always testify as an expert?
16 A. That is correct, Your Honours.
17 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Your Honour, I request the CV to be
19 JUDGE KWON: Yes, that will be done.
20 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P3031, Your Honours.
21 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF:
22 Q. Mr. Theunens, you provided a report "Radovan Karadzic and the
23 Serbian Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina, TO and VRS, 1992 to 1995," dated
24 15 April 2009 to the Office of the Prosecutor; is that correct?
25 A. That is correct, Your Honours.
1 Q. And you also provided an addendum and a corrigendum to this
2 report; is that also correct?
3 A. Yes, that is correct, Your Honours.
4 Q. At the end of your report, in a separate document you detail the
5 scope and the methodology of your work when producing the report. In
6 particular, in paragraph 3, you refer to the intelligence cycle, a method
7 that you applied. Can you explain to the Court what that entails?
8 A. Yes, Your Honours. The intelligence cycle overall includes four
9 discrete phases. "Discrete" means that the four phases are conducted
10 simultaneously or can be conducted simultaneously. These four phases
11 are: direction, collection, processing and dissemination, whereby
12 processing consists of five steps, and some of them, again, are conducted
13 simultaneously. These five steps are: collation, then evaluation, which
14 has to do with liability of the source, credibility of the information.
15 This is followed by analysis and integration, which are almost conducted
16 simultaneously. And at the end of the processing phase there is the
17 integration or the so-called integration. And if you want, I can explain
18 what these terms stand for, but it's basically a mental process whereby
19 you review information in order to draw relevant conclusions.
20 Q. Thank you. That should actually be sufficient. You have already
21 mentioned the reliability of sources. How do you determine whether a
22 source is reliable and the information provided credible?
23 A. The criteria as being applied in the intelligence cycle also
24 applied to any form of scientific research. To keep matters simple, one
25 of the criteria you will look -- or you will consider is the distance --
1 I'm sorry, the relationship between the source and the information. And
2 that relationship covers all aspects. It can be a purely -- I mean,
3 factual aspect, i.e., the distance, the physical distance, was the source
4 there or not, or is it -- is the source reporting information provided by
5 somebody else. The time relationship can be of importance, whether the
6 source provided information soon after the event or much later.
7 Obviously, an important aspect is the reputation of the source; i.e.,
8 this applies specifically to open sources. Many open sources, I wouldn't
9 call them biased, but they may be related to one or the other party who
10 may have an interest in the events you are reporting on, and that
11 relationship can influence the way in which that source reports the
13 Now, in this context, as you can see from the report, I mean for
14 the largest part, the sources I have consulted are what I would call
15 primary sources, i.e., VRS, SRBiH, TO, and other -- or, JNA, SFRY armed
16 forces military documentation, as well as SRBiH and followed by RS
17 political or more civilian documents, primary sources whereby these
18 organisations and structures report about their own activity. So there
19 would be, I mean from a purely doctrinal point of view, a higher degree
20 of reliability with these sources, but, of course, you will look also for
21 other sources in order to check corroboration. And that brings us to the
22 issue of credibility of the information.
23 The fact that the same information or the same facts is reported
24 several times does not add to the credibility of the information, but it
25 can -- it can assist. What you will look for is the context. For
1 example, when we see information for the first time and it doesn't fit
2 into the context, we will conduct additional searches, again applying the
3 same methodology, in order to try to -- in order to assess and establish
4 the credibility of that information.
5 Q. And in relation to the review and analysis, what time-frame did
6 the documentation cover that you reviewed?
7 A. When we consider the two parts of the report, basically, it
8 starts in the mid-1980s, specifically for relevant regulations applying
9 to the SFRY armed forces consisting of JNA and TO, and it ends -- I think
10 the last document I include is from November 1995. And for Part 2,
11 obviously most of the documentation covers the time-period, say, from
12 November 1991 to November 1995.
13 Q. As far as B/C/S documents were concerned, would you only work
14 with the English translation or would you also look at the original
15 versions of the document?
16 A. Your Honours, I would also look at the original version. I'm not
17 a B/C/S speaker, but after all the years here, you become familiar with
18 military terminology. And, for example, I would conduct searches on unit
19 numbers. Each military unit has a military post number. When, for
20 example -- I mean, as you see in the military orders and reports have a
21 number, a reference number, well, that can also be a search criteria.
22 There are standardised -- I mean, standard expressions that I used, I
23 mean, directives, instructions, and so on, ordered. Names of towns,
24 names of individuals, can all be used as search criteria, and that allows
25 you to gather -- I mean, to collect more information that is relevant for
1 the subject-matter of the report.
2 And just to finalise the answer, I wouldn't just search on the
3 English terms, but also look at the B/C/S terminology. And in case of
4 doubt, I could rely on a language assistance in the
5 Military Analysis Team who helped me out for that. I also had glossaries
6 available to me so in order to make sure that I could conduct the most
7 comprehensive searches possible.
8 Q. Your report includes a huge amount of references to documents.
9 On which basis did you choose these particular documents?
10 A. Well, as I explained in the scope of methodology, I mean, based
11 on the direction -- the direction was given by the senior trial attorney
12 to write a report about a specific topic. I then try to understand what
13 that implied. Obviously, I also relied on my previous experience here
14 and reports I had drafted for related cases. And then I would apply the
15 intelligence cycle, i.e., determine search criteria. And based on
16 this -- I mean, this is a continuous process. So you have a search
17 criteria. This will then also allow you to identify additional search
18 criteria. And then again applying the intelligence cycle, I would
19 accumulate information which I would organise depending on topics. I
20 would create a draft table of contents for my report which would cover
21 the main aspects I would like to cover, in report of which I consider
22 relevant for the scope of the report. And, obviously, documents that I
23 would have found and -- would generate again new search terms, and new
24 searches, and so on, and this would be a continuous process then. And
25 then I would, of course, apply the different criteria in order to
1 establish whether a source I had was reliable and whether the information
2 that was reported by that source was credible.
3 And so I've tried to focus on primary sources because there were
4 so many available, and as I mentioned, mainly documentation from SFRY
5 armed forces, JNA, Bosnian Serb TO, VRS, as well as, obviously, documents
6 from the political side, SFRY Presidency, SRBiH Presidency,
7 RS Presidency, RS Supreme Command, and so on, as you can see in the
9 Q. Mr. Theunens, did you author the entire report or did you
10 incorporate the work of other analysts?
11 A. Your Honours, I'm the only author of this report.
12 Q. And since writing the report, have you found any material which
13 would change your conclusions?
14 A. Your Honours, it's not about changing conclusions. But, for
15 example, the addendum there, I conducted additional searches, and then I
16 established whether these documents had any added value, and these
17 documents allow to further specify certain conclusions. But there were
18 no documents that made me change conclusions I included in Parts 1 and
19 Part 2 of the report.
20 Q. Mr. Theunens, did you have an opportunity to review a
21 consolidated report that incorporates the addendum and the corrigendum in
22 the report you authored in April 2009?
23 A. Yes, Your Honours, I did.
24 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: I would ask that Exhibit 65 ter 11702 be
25 brought up on the screen, and the first page is sufficient.
1 Q. Mr. Theunens, if you look at the date of this page, is that the
2 consolidated report that you just mentioned?
3 A. It does, Your Honours, and "Consolidated" stands for
4 incorporating all the parts of the report, including addendum and
6 Q. And is this consolidated report an accurate amalgamation of the
7 three documents? Did you check that?
8 A. Yes, Your Honours, it is.
9 Q. And while reviewing the report, did you identify two aspects that
10 you wanted to clarify?
11 A. Yes, I did, Your Honours.
12 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Can we please have page 60 of this report.
13 No, that's not correct. I need 0704-6531, ERN number. It's
14 further down.
15 JUDGE KWON: Page 60 on Part 2?
16 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Yes, page 60 on Part 2, yes. And it's
17 actually starting at the bottom and continuing on the next page.
18 Q. And I quote here:
19 "On 12 May 1992, the Assembly of the Serbian People of
20 Bosnia-Herzegovina elect Radovan Karadzic, Biljana Plavsic and
21 Nikola Koljevic as the members of the Presidency of the Serb Republic of
22 Bosnia-Herzegovina. On the same day, the members of the Serb Republic of
23 Bosnia-Herzegovina Presidency elect Radovan Karadzic to president of the
25 Would you like to make a clarification here, Mr. Theunens?
1 A. Indeed, Your Honours. It should read "President of the
2 Presidency of the SRBiH."
3 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Your Honour, that same error is also in the
4 paragraph 35 of the executive summary of the report.
5 And as we are at it, can we please have 65 ter 11001 on the
7 No, 11 -- 00111. Both languages.
8 Q. Mr. Theunens, looking at this document, is that the one you have
9 referred to in this paragraph?
10 A. Yes, I do, Your Honours.
11 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Can this please be admitted?
12 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Yes.
13 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P3032, Your Honours.
14 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Can we please again have the --
15 JUDGE KWON: Just a second. It's 3032, and the previous one as
17 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Yes. Can we please have again the
18 Exhibit -- the consolidated report, 65 ter 11702, and now, please, in
19 Part 2, page 178.
20 It's not -- it's not correct. There should be a reference --
21 JUDGE KWON: ERN number?
22 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: No, I have this ERN number, but I'm looking
23 for, actually, a reference to an alleged involvement of Serb forces in
24 serious crime in Bosanski Samac. What is it here? It should --
25 THE WITNESS: I believe it should be page 177.
1 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Oh, 177, so one earlier. Oh, sorry. 177,
2 please, the one previous. Yes, correct. Thank you, Mr. Theunens.
3 Q. You were referred here -- you refer here to a case in the
4 Military Court in Banja Luka, sentencing several persons to prison terms
5 for crimes and, I quote:
6 "... unlawful deprivation of liberty against a number of
7 civilians in the village of Donji Sabari [phoen], Samac municipality,
8 November 1992."
9 Mr. Theunens, when you look at this decision, what did you find
10 out in relation to the perpetrators and the victims of these particular
11 incidents? Were they, as you say here, civilians or not?
12 A. Your Honours, I had the opportunity to review the source or the
13 document I used, i.e., the judgement by the Banja Luka Military Court,
14 and I stand corrected; that is, that the accused were members of the VRS,
15 as well as the victims. So it shouldn't read "civilians" in this Roman
16 numeral iv, but it should read "members of the VRS."
17 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Thank you. Your Honours, with these two
18 clarifications, I request the report, 65 ter 11702, in this consolidated
19 form be admitted.
20 JUDGE KWON: Yes, that will be admitted.
21 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P3033, Your Honours.
22 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Your Honour, we have up-loaded also a track
23 changes version of that document, where one can easily see what is a
24 correction, what is an addendum, and that is under 11702A. I don't know
25 whether we also need to admit that or not. I would think yes.
1 JUDGE KWON: Yes, let's admit it.
2 Exhibit P3034.
3 And I note the time. It's time to rise for today.
4 MS. UERTZ-RETZLAFF: Thank you, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE KWON: We'll resume tomorrow at 9.00. Yes, we need to rise
7 The hearing is now adjourned.
8 [The witness stands down]
9 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 3.00 p.m.,
10 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 19th day of July,
11 2011, at 9.00 a.m.