1 Monday, 18 February 2013
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.04 a.m.
6 JUDGE KWON: Good morning, everyone. Today we'll be sitting
7 pursuant to Rule 15 bis, with Judge Morrison away due to his urgent
9 You haven't finished, Mr. Karadzic? Do we have Mr. Durmic?
10 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. President. We haven't started with him
12 JUDGE KWON: Good morning, Mr. Durmic. Would you make the solemn
13 declaration, please.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning. I solemnly declare
15 that I will speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
16 WITNESS: ZORAN DURMIC
17 [Witness answered through interpreter]
18 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Please make yourself comfortable.
19 Mr. Durmic, before you start giving evidence, I'd like to draw your
20 attention to a particular Rule here at the Tribunal. Under this Rule,
21 Rule 90(E), you may object to answering a question from the accused, the
22 Prosecution, or even from the Judges if you believe that your answer will
23 incriminate you. When I say "incriminate," I mean that something you may
24 say may amount to an admission of your guilt for having offended an
25 offence, a criminal offence, or could provide evidence that you have
1 committed an offence. However, even if you believe that your answer will
2 incriminate you and you do not wish to answer the question, the Tribunal
3 has the power to compel you to answer the question, but in such a case,
4 the Tribunal will make sure that your testimony compelled in such a way
5 shall not be used as evidence in other case against you for any offence
6 other than false testimony.
7 Do you understand what I have just told you, sir?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I do.
9 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Mr. Durmic.
10 Yes, Mr. Karadzic.
11 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Good morning, your Excellencies.
12 Good morning, everyone.
13 Examination by Mr. Karadzic:
14 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Durmic.
15 A. Good morning, Mr. President.
16 Q. I have to ask you and to remind myself to make a pause between
17 what I say and what you say so that everything is recorded on the
18 transcript, and to speak slowly so we don't have to make corrections to
19 the record, because that is a waste of time.
20 Mr. Durmic, did you give a statement to my Defence team?
21 A. Yes.
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could we see in e-court 1D7218,
23 please. 7218.
24 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Can you see that statement on the screen now?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Have you read this statement and signed it?
3 A. Yes, I did.
4 Q. Could we see the last page to identify the signature. Is this
5 your signature?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Thank you. Does this statement accurately reflect what you said
8 in that interview to the Defence team?
9 A. In essence, yes, but there are things I could add regarding the
10 pre-war period in the area of Milici municipality.
11 Q. Could you tell us this now.
12 A. Yes. I want to emphasise that the leadership of the municipality
13 and the leadership of the Boksit enterprise invested great efforts in the
14 negotiations with the Muslim population of Stedrici and Djile and other
15 villages located on the route from Milici to the mine to avoid a war.
16 All the employees of Muslim ethnicity were told that they are encouraged
17 to return to their work in the Boksit company and to get involved in the
18 restoration of the production of the ore, because we had international
19 contracts already signed, and any delay in the production and any
20 interruptions caused losses. A couple of dozen tonnes of flour and other
21 supplies were delivered to that population. Delegations to sent to
22 negotiate with them because they never wanted to come for negotiations to
23 our premises.
24 I worked in the security detail for these negotiations together
25 with other policemen. And the population was willing to accept the offer
1 to return to their work and to continue normal co-existence. However,
2 there were a couple of extremist leaders who exerted great pressure on
3 their own Muslim people and did not let them carry out all these
4 agreements. People were blackmailed, and we have statements to confirm
5 this. People were told that their families would be killed, and there
6 was even one statement that I believe is mentioned in my own which says
7 that they were told, "If you don't want to join our units, we'll bring
8 six men from Sandzak who will kill all your family members."
9 Furthermore, I want to stress that from these villages that I
10 enumerated, by the end of May the population had come to the bank and
11 collected their salaries without any impediment, and as one of the
12 Muslims says in his statement, "We continued making this trip until we
13 were warned by the men at the roadblock in Jokovaca that we cannot go
14 there anymore. And a couple of days after this prohibition of passage at
15 the roadblocks, these people, including one man who worked in the Boksit
16 company, made the request for accommodation to be found for them, all
17 these people who were getting called up in the mobilisation. All these
18 people found refuge in the secondary school in Derventa, and in my
19 estimate there were about a hundred of them. Food was brought to them.
20 Clothes were brought to them. Mothers with children were put up there,
21 and, of course, we put up physical security around the centre so that
22 these people would not be threatened or put in any jeopardy.
23 And that day, around 10.00 p.m., it was drizzling. The security
24 men noticed a group of people approaching the facility, and one of them
25 were -- was captured. He was found to have explosive devices in a bag he
1 was carrying. Pieces of slow-burning fuse were found on these
2 explosives, and this man said that --
3 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not catch all the names of
4 the Muslim leaders.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- who have sent these men to
6 attack the centre and then blame the Serbs.
7 That night we had to evacuate the people from that facility
8 because we were no longer able to guarantee their safety, and then again
9 in agreement with their representatives, we talked about where they want
10 to go and where they would feel the safest, because that location was no
11 longer safe. Nobody wanted to be responsible if anything happened. So
12 in the course of that night, with police escort we bused them to
13 Zaklopaca settlement where some of them rejoined their families, whereas
14 others were put up in the primary school. They remained there for
15 another day or two, and then they continued in the direction of Tuzla or
16 wherever they had family.
17 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Thank you. What was the situation with medical services and
19 trade? How long did all this continue to operate in Milici and how?
20 A. I've said previously that at the beginning of May, they were
21 still able to come to the bank and collect their salaries, which means
22 that they could also go shopping. There were no problems.
23 As for health services, I remember one case when the conflict was
24 already going on, a young man, wounded, was brought by his own brother.
25 I don't know what he said, that Serbs or territorial men injured him or
1 maybe it was a self-inflicted injury, but he was taken by ambulance to
2 the military hospital in Sokolac, and in that statement I read he died
3 during transport. He was driven by an ambulance with proper medical
4 staff around him, et cetera.
5 Q. Taking into account these additions, does this statement now
6 accurately reflect what you said?
7 A. Well, this statement mainly reflects the pre-war situation in our
8 municipality, Milici, and the relations between the Serb and the Muslim
9 population and the approach taken by the leadership of the municipality
10 towards these people.
11 Q. Thank you. If I were to ask you the same questions today as when
12 you were giving the statement, would your answers be essentially the
14 A. Essentially, yes.
15 Q. Thank you.
16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] May I tender this 92 package,
17 92 ter?
18 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Robinson, I'd like to deal with associated
19 exhibits one by one in light of the ruling that I gave last year, in
20 particular with respect to third-party statements.
21 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. President. We're only offering five
22 associated exhibits at this stage.
23 JUDGE KWON: Shall we deal with it one by one?
24 MR. ROBINSON: Yes. And we ask that all of them or whichever
25 ones you admit be added to our 65 ter list as we didn't have the
1 witness -- the witness had not been interviewed as of the time of our
2 filing of our exhibit list.
3 The first one that we're offering is 1D7018.
4 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
5 MR. ROBINSON: Then 1D7019.
6 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
7 MR. ROBINSON: 1D7020, 1D7021, and finally, 1D7214.
8 JUDGE KWON: Ms. Sutherland.
9 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, we have no objection to all of the
10 associated exhibits just mentioned by Mr. Robinson, although we would
11 query the relevance of 1D07018, which is the report of an on-site
12 investigation about an attack which we would say would be tu quoque.
13 JUDGE KWON: Whether it's tu quoque or not, but the paragraph can
14 be understood without that exhibit, Mr. Robinson?
15 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, that's true.
16 JUDGE KWON: So are you minded to withdraw that exhibit as well?
17 MR. ROBINSON: Not really because we think it corroborates his
18 information, but if you don't think of it's of valuable to the Chamber
19 that's up to you, but we think it's corroborative of the information in
20 that paragraph.
21 JUDGE KWON: While it may be corroborative, it is the Chamber's
22 view that the -- it does not form indispensable, inseparable part of the
23 statement as such. So if we would not admit it -- admit it as part of
24 associated exhibits.
25 THE ACCUSED: May I say something, Excellency?
1 JUDGE KWON: If necessary, you may tell us the relevance and you
2 may lead it live. We are not admitting it as part of associated
4 So we will be admitting those four associated exhibits, and what
5 to do with the paragraphs that are related to the exhibit that were not
6 tendered, I would like the parties to discuss to redact some part of the
7 statement or not. I leave it to the parties.
8 Ms. Sutherland, do you follow? If you could liaise with
9 Mr. Robinson.
10 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes, Your Honour.
11 JUDGE KWON: Yes. Shall we give the numbers for those.
12 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honour, the 92 ter statement will -- 65 ter
13 number 1D7218 will be Exhibit D2944. And 65 ter number 1D7019 will be
14 Exhibit D2945. 7020 will be Exhibit 2946; 1D7021 will be Exhibit 2947;
15 and 65 ter number 1D7214 will be Exhibit D2948.
16 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Yes, Mr. Karadzic.
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Your Excellencies, precisely on the
18 example of this municipality, Vlasenica, the Prosecution has tried to
19 represent my speech as the trigger for the further chain of events, my
20 speech at that funeral, whereas the events described are much more
21 convincing as the trigger. It is not about tu quoque. It is about
22 finding out the reason why things happened.
23 JUDGE KWON: The term "associated exhibit" is a kind of term of
24 art. In order to be admitted as part of the associated exhibit, it
25 should be forming an indispensable and inseparable part of the statement.
1 Please consult with Mr. Robinson.
2 THE ACCUSED: Okay. Thank you. Now I would read a summary of
3 statement of Mr. Zoran Durmic in English, and then we'll see whether to
4 lead this document live.
5 Mr. Zoran Durmic was an inspector of the crime prevention police
6 in the SJB Vlasenica. Before the war, he was assigned to the reserve
7 police of Vlasenica Public Security Station.
8 Before the war, as a reserve, Zoran Durmic would take part in
9 training exercises and listen to lectures. Sometimes in mid-September
10 1991, he received a mobilisation call-up to report to the Vlasenica SJB.
11 He was assigned on this occasion because the situation between the Serbs
12 and Muslims was very complicated. Current members of active-duty
13 policemen could not guarantee the security of the population so that
14 authorities were forced to mobilise the reserve police force of which
15 both Serbs and Muslims were members.
16 Mr. Zoran Durmic and his colleagues worked every day in shifts
17 patrolling the town of Milici, making the population seem more secure.
18 He spent a month or two in this position, until the security situation
19 improved. However, he was mobilised once again in March 1992. The
20 situation this time was much more dramatic the as there were already
21 armed clashes between Serbs and Muslims in some neighbouring
22 municipalities. The JNA was also withdrawing from Croatia via Bosnia to
23 Serbia, and columns of military vehicles passed through Milici every day.
24 On 5th of April, 1992, Zoran Durmic received an order to escort a
25 military convoy to Mali Zvornik in Serbia along with two other officers,
1 Radomir Pantic and Mirko Lekovic. The officers travelled in an official
2 police car. However, on the way, they came to a Muslim barricade manned
3 by Muslim policemen and one Muslim soldier among them was an active
5 The convoy was stopped at the barricade and questioned. The
6 Muslim officers were rude, and it was clear that they disliked the JNA.
7 Eventually, they let the convoy pass, and about a kilometre behind the
8 barricade, the convoy came across a second barricade, this time manned by
9 the Serb Territorial Defence. The Territorial Defence moved the
10 barricade and allowed the convoy to pass unhindered.
11 The officers experienced abusive behaviour by the Muslims on
12 their return journey, and when the officers returned to Milici, they saw
13 that a large crowd had gathered in front of the police station. They
14 were told that the crowd had gathered as the police were distributing
15 weapons to the Muslims.
16 The next day, Zoran Durmic again was requested to accompany the
17 same two officers to Banja Koviljaca and Zvornik to reclaim a car that
18 had been taken from an officer by Muslim forces the day before. On the
19 way, they encountered a car positioned across the highway blocking their
20 way. As they approached, a number of armed Muslim soldiers jumped out of
21 the bushes. They were all armed with automatic rifles, and the officers
22 were ordered to get out of the car. The Muslims took the police
23 officers' pistols and automatic rifles. The Muslims also took the police
24 car that the officers had been travelling in.
25 Zoran Durmic noted that the soldiers were well armed, dressed in
1 new camouflage uniforms, and had modern walkie-talkies. The police
2 officers requested to speak to their superiors, and after a while two
3 further men arrived. The Muslim -- Muslim forces wanted one of the
4 police officers to negotiate a cease-fire with Arkan. However, they were
5 told it was not possible.
6 At this moment, a man named Medo appeared, and he said that he
7 would take the officers as far as Kasaba to allow them to get home. The
8 police officers were mistreated at other barricades on their journey
9 home, and after this incident, Zoran Durmic realised that the war with
10 the Muslims was inevitable.
11 On 21st of January, 1992, the Muslims ambushed a TAM truck
12 transporting workers to the Boksit mine. Eight Serbian workers including
13 two women were killed. Another incident followed soon after the 27th of
14 May, 1992, when the Muslims carried out an ambush of some Boksit drivers.
15 Five drivers were killed and the trucks burned. These incidents made the
16 people in Milici uneasy.
17 After these incidents, daily attacks against Serbian villages in
18 Milici municipality were carried out. All the Serbian villages were
19 burned to the ground and the population expelled, killed, or wounded, and
20 their property looted.
21 Zoran Durmic is not aware that the incident of 16th of May, 1992,
22 was planned or organised. It was a place where the Muslims attacked
23 strongly and the fighting went on for several hours.
24 On 13th of July, 1995, whilst on duty, Zoran Durmic noted that a
25 large group of Muslims were being guarded by the army. There were
1 wounded men among them, and they were being treated by the medical
2 personnel of the hospital in Milici. Whilst they were in the area, there
3 were no killings of Muslim captives. They were being transported by
4 buses away from Milici, and no one stopped these buses or removed persons
5 from them.
6 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. Mr. Durmic, now I would like to ask you this: The Prosecution
8 cited my speech of the 29th of September, 1992, at the funeral of Serbs
9 massacred in Rogosija as if that agreement incited towards hatred and
10 intolerance in Vlasenica. Whether any events before that speech of mine
11 that had an effect on the atmosphere among the people, particularly the
12 Serb people, and for inter-ethnic relations in Milici and Vlasenica.
13 This is the end of 1992.
14 A. Well, first, perhaps we could go back to the reading of my
15 statement. Perhaps there's an error in the interpretation. It says
16 "public security station," but actually it's a station sector Milici. We
17 were a branch, station branch, in Milici that was part of the police
18 station in Vlasenica. So until the police station in Milici was formed,
19 we carried out all the police work.
20 And then it says that on the outskirts of Zvornik, in front of
21 the police station we intercepted a large group of people --
22 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not catch everything that
23 the witness said.
24 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Durmic, I think you spoke a bit too fast for the
25 interpreters to catch up.
1 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
2 Q. Mr. Durmic, may I just ask you, what I read is not an exhibit.
3 If it's correct in the statement, don't pay any attention to what I read
4 in the summary. If the statement is accurate, then everything is all
6 A. All right. Very well.
7 Q. And do you remember my question?
8 A. [No interpretation]
9 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Ms. Sutherland.
10 MS. SUTHERLAND: For the record, the Prosecution wasn't put on
11 notice of this evidence which is about to be led in relation to
12 Mr. Karadzic's speech.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] If I may respond.
14 JUDGE KWON: Yes. Yes.
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] It pertains to the associated
16 exhibit that we decided to lead live, Milici. So we did not need to
17 provide notice.
18 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, that's not entirely correct. We
19 should be put on notice as to what evidence will be led from the witness
20 whether live or pursuant to Rule 92 ter.
21 JUDGE KWON: When -- when the Defence is tendering certain
22 exhibit or is planning to tender a certain exhibit, is it obliged to tell
23 the other party the purpose of such tendering? Probably it's -- would
24 you like to respond to what Mr. Karadzic just stated?
25 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, he was asking the witness about his
1 speech in September 1992. Now, whatever the witness says about that
2 speech, we have not been put on notice anywhere in the Rule 65 ter
3 summary or in the statement of what the witness will say about that.
4 JUDGE KWON: I understood his statement to be the reason why he's
5 tendering 1D7018.
6 Mr. Tieger? You can't resist.
7 MR TIEGER: Well, I -- that's exactly right, Mr. President. Not
8 when it implicates an issue that was raised previously and then has a
9 bearing on notice in the future. So I simply wanted to say that it --
10 we're talking about potentially two different things. The -- there may
11 not be a rule that says that one party is obliged to explain to the other
12 in advance the purpose of tendering a particular exhibit, but there is a
13 rule that says that the other party has to be provided with notice of the
14 facts upon which the witness will testify. Excuse me. Now, it may be
15 the case that sometimes the notification that a particular exhibit will
16 be tendered overlaps between the two, and so I'm not speak -- I'm not
17 pre-empting anybody speaking to this particular issue but, it continues
18 to be the case that in the face of deficient 65 ter summaries and belated
19 submission of statements - I'm not suggesting that this is one - that
20 then the Defence will advance information or elicit information from a
21 witness without any notification to the Prosecution whatsoever, thereby
22 disrupting and undermining the opportunity to prepare for cross.
23 So I'm simply saying that as before, the issue is one of whether
24 the Prosecution has been provided with sufficient notice under
25 Rule 65 ter about the facts upon which the witness will testify so that
1 it may properly prepare.
2 I apologise for not be able to resist, but it is a significant
3 issue, one that's been raised on many occasions, and I think that's a
4 distinction which is useful to bear in mind here.
5 MS. SUTHERLAND: And if I may add, Your Honour, I didn't see the
6 connection between 1D17018, which is about an incident in June and
7 Mr. Karadzic's question which was about his speech in September, and he
8 uses -- and he even referred to the end of 1992 in his question.
9 JUDGE KWON: Can we hear from you, Mr. Robinson.
10 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. President. I think the best thing to do
11 is to put the document before the witness and we'll avoid all of this
12 problem. This was Dr. Karadzic's way of introducing the document. I
13 think that's the problem. The Prosecution -- for what Dr. Karadzic is
14 intending to do, which is to admit the document that was offered as an
15 associate exhibit, I don't think this raises any broader issues of notice
16 if his question is understood in that context.
17 JUDGE KWON: If you could tell Mr. Karadzic to proceed in that
18 way, Mr. Robinson.
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. Can we call up 1D7018
20 in e-court, please. Had this document been accepted as an associated
21 exhibit, I would have discussed it in my closing arguments. But now I
22 would like to see what was going on in June, much earlier than September.
23 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
24 Q. Can you please tell us what this document is, Mr. Durmic.
25 A. This is a document which is a record of an on-site investigation
1 in the village of Rupovo Brdo, the municipality of Milici, which was
2 burned down by Muslim forces on the 10th of June, 1992. This village was
3 where five people were killed. Some even had their necks cut. And then
4 after 21 years, three persons are registered as missing. Unfortunately
5 they have still not been found. This is a father and son, Trivko and
6 Zugic Komljanin [phoen] and Milinkovic Vlado. This village was
7 completely blocked for a few days and it was not possible to conduct the
8 on-site investigation right away.
9 I also might note that all of these victims were buried without
10 any religious rites, without any previous medical examination, so that we
11 don't have any medical documents about the injuries or wounds on the
12 bodies of those killed but on the basis of statements and their close
13 relatives we noted these.
14 Q. Thank you. Can we look at the next page, please. You say here
15 in the first paragraph that the whole village was burnt to the ground,
16 including the barns, the pigs, everything.
17 A. Yes. Everything was destroyed, the entire infrastructure of the
18 village, all the property. The cattle was driven away, and the tractors
19 and other machinery was taken away and burned.
20 Q. And can you tell us who the victims were? What was their
22 A. The victims were mostly -- I don't want to insult anyone, but
23 they were peasants, inhabitants of the village who lived there. For
24 example, Zugic Koviljka, I think this old woman was 81 or 82 years old,
25 and according to testimony of those closest to her, she -- her throat was
1 slashed. And then Zugic Komljanin, who is missing, he was also an
2 elderly person, he was over 70 years old. He is still missing. He was
3 taken away from the village together with his son Trivko, and also
4 Vlado Milinkovic.
5 Q. All right. Can you please tell the Chamber this: Who are the
6 three persons who conducted the investigation?
7 A. The investigation was carried out by Danilo Djeletovic, the then
8 inspector of the public security centre in Sarajevo, which included the
9 security station in Milici; then Zoran Durmic, that's me; and then also
10 Dragan Savic, crime technician of the public security centre in Sarajevo.
11 Q. And then in this last paragraph, can you please tell us the names
12 the perpetrators. Who were these people who did this?
13 A. The commanders of units are mentioned here, the units that
14 participated in this incident in this small village. So it is
15 Zulfo Tursunovic, aka Tursun, and they acted from the direction of
16 Zedanjsko. Then Ibrahim Ademovic, known as Cakura, his unit came from
17 the direction of Djile. The village of Djile is neighbouring the village
18 to Rupovo Brdo. They knew each other. Becir Mekanic came from the area
19 of Stedra, to the north of the village. And then Fadil Turkovic, who was
20 the former commander of the public security station from Vlasenica, his
21 unit came from the direction of Kupusna. And let me just say that
22 Kupusna lies in the direction of Zepa. According to some information or
23 some statements of the people from his unit, it was learned that a month
24 before that, he went to the area of Zepa, or Podzeplje to be more
25 precise, and then he brought 20 well-trained soldiers. That was what he
1 told them. And then also we have Mujo Bektic from Podgaj, this is the
2 municipality of Srebrenica, because we -- the border between Milici and
3 Srebrenica was there. His unit came from the direction of Zutica.
4 Q. Thank you. And did you learn that on the same day at the same
5 time, and how many similar incidents occurred before September 1992 in
6 the area that was covered by your station, Milici and Vlasenica?
7 A. Yes.
8 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Karadzic, I'm not sure if we need that detailed
9 evidence. Shall we move on.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Very well.
11 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. Can you just tell us how this reflected on the general situation
13 in that area? What effect did it have on the Serbian people, on the
15 A. Well, how could it affect them? You can see that from these
16 documents when they slashed the throat of their mother, killed their
17 brother, take away the father who has not been found for the past
18 22 years. Then there were ambushes in Zutica where eight people were
19 killed. In my translation, we got that this was the Boksit mine, but
20 this was the village between Ravan. There were children, women, elderly
21 people, and even though they were killed, explosives were thrown on that
22 truck. The bodies were massacred. This was terrible.
23 Q. Thank you, Mr. Durmic.
24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we accept -- can we tender this
25 document now, Your Honours?
1 JUDGE KWON: Ms. Sutherland.
2 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, I would still object on the basis
3 of relevance to the charges in the indictment.
4 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Robinson.
5 MR. ROBINSON: Well, Your Honour, unless we're going to pretend
6 that this was not a civil war, I don't see how the Prosecution can expect
7 the trial to proceed with only attacks against Muslims and no evidence of
8 what the Muslims did to the Serbs. I think it's highly relevant. It's
9 not tu quoque evidence. It explains the events for which Mr. Karadzic is
10 charged with planning, instigating and executing.
11 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, basically the document has been
12 discussed at length with the witness, which is in the transcript.
13 [Trial Chamber confers]
14 JUDGE KWON: The Chamber will receive it.
15 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit D2949, Your Honours.
16 THE ACCUSED: Thank you. [Interpretation] Thank you,
17 Excellencies. I don't have any questions for this witness at this point.
18 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Durmic, your evidence in chief in this case has
19 been admitted in writing in lieu of your oral testimony, as you have
20 noted. You will now be cross-examined by the representative of the
21 Office of the Prosecutor.
22 Ms. Sutherland.
23 MS. SUTHERLAND: Thank you, Your Honour. If I can just have one
25 Cross-examination by Ms. Sutherland:
1 Q. Mr. Durmic, the Milici branch station that you refer to became a
2 public security station in early May 1992; correct?
3 A. I'm not sure that this was in early May. I think it was sometime
4 in mid-May, because the public security station was formed in the area of
5 the municipality of Milici pursuant to a decision by the minister of the
6 interior. In any case, it was the month of May.
7 Q. The chief of police, Rade Bjelanovic moved from being the chief
8 the Vlasenica SJB to being the chief of the SJB Milici.
9 A. No. I think you've not got it quite right. The late
10 Mr. Bjelanovic was the chief of the public security station in Vlasenica.
11 Part of that station, the Vlasenica station, we had the branch station in
12 Milici. Later by forming the public security station in Milici,
13 Mr. Milanovic [as interpreted] then transferred to become the chief of
14 the public security station in Milici. In my interpretation I'm getting
15 the security services centre, and I think that's a bigger branch.
16 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not catch the last exchange
17 between the accused and the witness.
18 MS. SUTHERLAND: Yes, I think there's been -- I think there's
19 been a mistranslation.
20 JUDGE KWON: No, just please do not overlap. Do not overlap.
21 Can we do without the exchange between Mr. Karadzic and Mr. Durmic which
22 was lost in their entirety because of overlapping?
23 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] All I said was that in the
24 transcript it was correct, but the oral interpretation was the CSB, and
25 this is what confused the witness.
1 JUDGE KWON: So shall we start again. Yes, I leave it to you,
2 Ms. Sutherland.
3 MS. SUTHERLAND: Thank you, Your Honour.
4 Q. Mr. Durmic, what -- what I said a moment ago was that the chief
5 of the police, Rade Bjelanovic, moved from being the chief of the
6 Vlasenica SJB, that is, the public security station, to become the chief
7 of the SJB in Milici. That's correct, isn't it?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. And there were approximately 40 police working at SJB Milici?
10 A. Well, we could never establish the exact number. It changed
11 every day according to the situation, the organisation of the police, the
12 reserves of the police. This is something that was approved through the
13 department for Territorial Defence, the Territorial Defence Staff. So
14 sometimes we would have 30 people, then we would have to let five go,
15 then we would have 40, and we would release 10 for the needs of the army.
16 So it was manned according to the needs and its duties in the area that
17 it could serve, that it could carry out. This is for the needs of the
18 people, if you understand me correctly.
19 Q. And there was a Special Police Unit within the SJB at Milici,
20 wasn't there?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Who was the commander of that Special Police Unit?
23 A. Again, we didn't understand each other. We did not have
24 Special Police. Milici did not have Special Police. They had a public
25 security station Milici, which as part of its composition had certain
1 services, service of Milici dealing with public law and order, crime
2 prevention. They had the criminal technical service. Then it had the
3 administrative and legal affairs sector that dealt with different
4 documents required by the citizens, driver's licences, passports, and so
5 on. The special unit was at the level of the MUP. There wasn't one at
6 the station.
7 MS. SUTHERLAND: Could we have 65 ter number 24604, please.
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] While we are waiting, can we ask to
9 be told or notified about the documents that are going to be used in the
10 cross-examination. We still have not received this notification.
11 [Prosecution and Case Manager confer]
12 MS. SUTHERLAND: I'm sorry, Your Honour. There was a
13 miscommunication. It's coming right now.
14 JUDGE KWON: Yes. Please continue, Ms. Sutherland.
15 MS. SUTHERLAND:
16 Q. Mr. Durmic, you see --
17 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
18 MS. SUTHERLAND: Sorry.
19 Q. Mr. Durmic, you see in front of you a list of the Milici SJB
20 employees for July 1995, and we see a list of -- of 37 names.
21 A. Yes. It's quite small. Okay. Now it's been enlarged. Let me
22 see. This is the list of those employed at the SJB at the time.
23 Q. Yes. And -- and if you're looking at the names there, was --
24 were these policemen working in the SJB Milici in -- in the beginning of
25 1992 when the station, the SJB, was first formed?
1 A. No. No. I don't know if I could take six or seven of these
2 people from this list who were there in 1992. I said earlier that it was
3 all adapted to the situation. It would be increased or decreased. This
4 is 1995, now, so the station was already functioning, had certain
5 services. The number of policemen was engaged according to the existing
7 Q. So, of course, the chief would be different because it's
8 Rade Bjelanovic as opposed to Todor Boskovic, but if you go through the
9 list of those names, could you just tell me the numbers of the people in
10 the SJB who were working there in 1992? You don't have to say the names,
11 you can just say the numbers.
12 A. Well, you just have to give me a little time to go over this.
13 From what I remember, perhaps it was 15 or 16 people from this
15 Q. Okay. For example -- for example, number 6, do you recognise
16 that name?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And he was working there in 1992?
19 A. He was working there from the 1980s already, I believe.
20 Q. And number 27, for example?
21 A. I think that he completed high school, perhaps that he started
22 working in 1991, just before the war, and I think he was a ...
23 Q. Thank you, Mr. Durmic.
24 A. He was an intern.
25 MS. SUTHERLAND: I seek to admit that document.
1 MR. ROBINSON: No objection.
2 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
3 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P6126, Your Honours.
4 MS. SUTHERLAND:
5 Q. In your statement, you -- in paragraphs 30 to 32, you talk about
6 the Zaklopaca incident, and you said that in paragraph 30, that on the
7 day of the Zaklopaca massacre you were on the road section leading to the
8 bauxite mine. How many were in this patrol with you?
9 A. There's an error again in the interpretation. I did not say at
10 the crossroads, but I said that we were on the section. I meant a zone
11 along the road of -- the regional road from Milici-Rudnik or
12 Milici-Skelani where this road was captured by Muslim paramilitary units,
13 because the territorials, the TO, tried to deblock that, and we from the
14 police, of course, were supposed to place that under control, or we were
15 supposed to secure that area that was freed.
16 Q. Mr. Durmic, my question was a simple one. How many people were
17 on patrol with you that day when you said you were on the road section?
18 A. I'm trying to explain to you that at the present wasn't a patrol
19 but that it was basically the entire reserve force in the field. In the
20 police station, there was only the duty service and perhaps a few people
21 to secure the building and maybe two or three in the crime prevention
22 department. The rest were up there on the road, because there was a
23 threat of the road being blocked and the mine being taken over. So the
24 entire area would be paralysed. It wasn't a simple patrol which would
25 comprise, two, three, or up to five policemen, but this in turn included
1 basically all of the members.
2 MS. SUTHERLAND: If we could have 65 ter number 00567.
3 Q. Mr. Durmic, this is a daily -- or this is a report of -- a duty
4 report from Milan Bacic, who was on duty on the 16th of May, 1992, where
5 he says he took over duty at 7.00 a.m. in the morning, and he says here
6 that all personnel were engaged in "ciscenje terena" operation.
7 A. He probably believed it to be a mopping up operation. I'm trying
8 to tell you that we were supposed to provide security along the road
9 which had been deblocked by the territorials. So we assumed positions.
10 It -- the road went through the valley in the direction of the mine and
11 certain points needed to be secured, because people might be killed
12 otherwise. Before the war they would stop vehicles and let people go on
13 foot and so on and so forth. They would also stop trucks and cars.
14 MS. SUTHERLAND: Could we have 65 ter number 00568.
15 Q. Mr. Durmic, again another report by Milan Bacic to the SJB
16 commander, and again it says that on the 16th of May, the situation was
17 regular and it was the same when he passed on the duty to the next person
18 at 2300 hours, and again he said all personnel were engaged in a
19 "ciscenje terena," cleaning operation. So again this -- and it says all
20 personnel were engaged. It makes no reference to -- specifically to the
21 area where you were, talking simply about all SJB personnel engaged on
22 the ground in a cleaning up operation.
23 A. I see here two different reports for the same date signed by the
24 same person. The first report is different from this one in terms of
25 sequence of reporting.
1 In this report, it says that there were no parties to attend to
2 during the duty shift, and in the other one the report is a different
3 matter. So it's the same day, the same person, and two different
5 Q. Yes. You can see that on the first one it does say no parties
6 came during duty, and it also says that on the second report, just in a
7 different order. The first report, 00567, talks about him taking over
8 duty at 7.00 in the morning. The later report, 00568, refers to him
9 passing on the duty at 2300 in the evening. So clearly it's two
10 different reports written at two different times of the day, is it not?
11 A. I don't know. I'm unaware of such practice of writing two
12 reports when assuming duty and being relieved of duty. Usually reports
13 are drafted at the end of one's duty, or perhaps the previous person
14 submits a report on his duty before handing over. So it's usually at the
15 end of the shift. I don't see why this person would draft two reports.
16 Q. But you do know this Milan Bacic, don't you?
17 A. I barely knew him. I think they live somewhere in Sweden. He
18 was with us for maybe a month and then he left. I didn't know him very
20 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, I seek to tender those two
22 MR. ROBINSON: No objection.
23 JUDGE KWON: Yes, we'll admit them.
24 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibits P6127 and P6128, respectively,
25 Your Honours.
1 MS. SUTHERLAND:
2 Q. Mr. Bacic -- Mr. Durmic, is it your evidence that it was the JNA
3 who took part in the attack on the inhabitants of the village of
4 Zaklopaca on the 16th of May, 1992, as it was passing through Milici?
5 Yes -- yes or no?
6 A. I can't say anything, because I didn't see it. I don't have any
7 information. I can only presume, because on the 15th of May, there was
8 the famous -- or infamous Tuzla column incident where the column was cut
9 off. And there is a possibility that the tail, the end of the column was
10 separated, and then they tried to turn back, and then there is the
11 possibility --
12 Q. Mr. Durmic, in relation to this incident, as you say, you -- it's
13 your evidence that you weren't there and that you heard about this from
14 someone else; is that right?
15 A. Yes. I heard about it only in the evening when we returned from
16 the field that I explained to you a moment ago. My workmate was killed,
17 and later in the evening I went to visit his family, and many people were
18 in attendance, in mourning. There was some rumour that something had
19 taken place, but at that point in time I didn't pay much attention to it.
20 That was the story that went around. That's the information I have.
21 MS. SUTHERLAND: Thank you, Mr. Durmic.
22 Your Honour, I have no further questions.
23 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Mr. Karadzic, do you have any
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Just one topic, Your Excellency.
1 Can we see P6126. It has been admitted a moment ago.
2 Re-examination by Mr. Karadzic:
3 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Durmic, you made a distinction between
4 employees and policemen. What does it mean? Who is a policemen, and who
5 are the employees?
6 A. No. No. There was a misunderstanding. The list of employees is
7 from 1995. What I said was not that -- not all of these people were
8 there in 1992. So by visual inspection, I said that maybe some 15 of
9 them were there from the start in the police station.
10 Q. Basically I wanted you to clear something up for us. Are all of
11 these men policemen or are some of them administrative clerks?
12 A. No, no. At the top there is the chief, and then there is the
13 secretary, the department for vehicle registration, for the issuing of
14 IDs and other documents. There's the department in charge of cleaning.
15 So many of these people are not authorised officials. They're not
17 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Durmic.
18 JUDGE KWON: Well, then that concludes your evidence, Mr. Durmic.
19 I thank you for your coming to The Hague to give it. Now you are free to
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
22 [The witness withdrew]
23 JUDGE KWON: I take it the next witness is ready.
24 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. President, he is.
25 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, perhaps we could take an early
1 break so that we could change seating, because Ms. Gustafson is leading
2 the next witness.
3 JUDGE KWON: She hasn't been in? Is she hiding? No.
4 MS. SUTHERLAND: She's coming. She's on her way, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE KWON: Then we'll have two 15 minutes' break before the
6 lunch break. We'll see how it evolves. We'll take a break for
7 15 minutes now. Yes, just before that, yes, Mr. Tieger.
8 MR. TIEGER: Sorry, I didn't know what was more or less
9 convenient, Mr. President, but I'm sure Ms. Gustafson is on her way. If
10 you just want to take a couple minutes, I'm sure we could set up. I
11 don't want to create any trouble for the Court --
12 JUDGE KWON: That's what I wanted too but -- yes.
13 MR TIEGER: I'm sure it'll be fine.
14 JUDGE KWON: This time we'll take a 15-minute break. We'll
15 resume at 10.32 a.m.
16 --- Recess taken at 10.16 a.m.
17 --- On resuming at 10.34 a.m.
18 [The witness entered court]
19 JUDGE KWON: Would the witness make the solemn declaration,
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
22 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
23 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Mr. Veselinovic. Please make yourself
25 WITNESS: SVETO VESELINOVIC
1 [Witness answered through interpreter]
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
3 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Karadzic.
4 Examination by Mr. Karadzic:
5 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Veselinovic.
6 A. Good morning, Mr. President.
7 Q. I have to remind us both to speak slowly and to put pauses
8 between your question -- between our questions and answers so as to have
9 everything reflected in the transcript.
10 Did you provide a statement to my Defence team?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Thank you.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we have 1D7230 in e-court.
14 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. The statement you see on the screen, is it the one you gave to
16 the Defence team?
17 A. Yes, it is.
18 Q. Thank you. Have you read it and signed it?
19 A. Yes. I've read it and signed it.
20 Q. Thank you.
21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we see the last page, please,
22 in order to see the signature and identify it.
23 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
24 Q. Can you confirm that it is your signature?
25 A. Yes, I can.
1 Q. Thank you. Does the statement accurately and entirely convey
2 what you shared with the Defence team?
3 A. Yes, it does.
4 Q. Thank you. If I were to put the same questions to you today,
5 would your answers be essentially the same as we can find them in the
7 A. Yes, they would.
8 Q. Thank you.
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Your Excellencies, I seek to tender
10 the 92 ter package, and I will have to lead a few documents live with the
12 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Robinson.
13 MR. ROBINSON: Mr. President, we're tendering eight associated
14 exhibits, and we would ask that each of them be added to the 65 ter list
15 as we didn't have -- had not interviewed the witness at the time we
16 prepared that list. The first one is 1D12044. The second, 1D12045. The
17 third, 1D12046. The fourth, 1D048. The fifth, 1D12049. The sixth,
18 1D12053. The seventh, 1D12054. And the eighth, 1D12055.
19 JUDGE KWON: Any objections, Ms. Gustafson?
20 MS. GUSTAFSON: No, Your Honours. If I understand correctly,
21 neither of the videos are being tendered, so we had an objection to one
22 of the videos, but I understand from what was just said that the videos
23 aren't being tendered.
24 I understand 1D12045 and 1D12054 are now the only exhibits being
25 tendered for which there is no translation, and those are the ones as we
1 indicated in our e-mail yesterday that should be led live. Other than
2 that there are no objections.
3 MR. ROBINSON: When I checked this morning there were
4 translations for those two, but if the Chamber hasn't had a chance to
5 look at them we can pass them, but there were translations this
6 morning --
7 MS. GUSTAFSON: Sorry, I should clarify. There were -- I agree
8 there are translations but the translations that are in e-court are
9 translations of the previous documents that were at least in large part
10 illegible. So the translations now don't match the contents of the newly
11 provided documents. So there is still a translation issue for those two
13 JUDGE KWON: Just a second. Very well. If those two documents
14 are to be led live, we'll admit the Rule 92 ter statement as well as
15 other six associated exhibits.
16 We will give the number for the statement.
17 THE REGISTRAR: That's Exhibit D2950, Your Honours.
18 JUDGE KWON: Shall we give the numbers for the other associated
19 exhibits in lump sum from -- six numbers altogether.
20 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honours. Those will be Exhibits D2951
21 through to Exhibit D2956 respectively.
22 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. In the order of the Rule 65 ter numbers.
23 THE REGISTRAR: That's correct.
24 JUDGE KWON: Please continue, Mr. Karadzic.
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. I'd like to read out a
1 summary of Mr. Veselinovic's statement in the English language.
2 [In English] Sveto Veselinovic was the president of the SDS
3 Municipal Board in Rogatica from 1990, when it was founded, to
4 March 1992. After the first multi-party elections, he was elected a
5 member of the municipal Executive Committee. Just before the war, he was
6 chief of the municipal public revenue administration. In May 1992, he
7 became a member of the Crisis Staff in Rogatica. In September 1992, he
8 was appointed head of income administration by the president of the
9 Executive Committee of Rogatica. He remained in that position until the
10 end of 1993, when he moved to the Ministry of Trade to become a republic
11 financial inspector.
12 Sveto Veselinovic assisted with the preparations for the founding
13 assembly of the SDS in Rogatica municipality, which was also attended by
14 representatives of the SDA Muslim party. Up until the second half of the
15 1991, the political situation in BH was cordial, co-operation was
16 encouraged, and the break-up of Yugoslavia and one-track policies
18 Following the multi-party elections, the departments in local
19 government and leading functions in public institutions were divided up
20 very quickly. However, it became clear to Sveto Veselinovic that the SDA
21 abandoned its declared policy and began to focus their activities on the
22 secession of B and H from Yugoslavia.
23 The first problem in Rogatica began when the division of
24 functions agreed on 4th of January, 1991, was to be implemented because
25 for certain functions the approval of the republican organs was
1 necessary. This meant that agreements reached in the municipality were
2 abandoned. At this the Serbs organised a protest on the square near the
3 municipal building. The SDA assisted in resolving this matter. However,
4 under pressure from the SDA central office the Rogatica SDA leadership
5 became less cooperative and changed their position, adopting the policy
6 for the creation of a unitary independent Bosnia.
7 Sveto Veselinovic considers that the media placed themselves in
8 the service of the SDA Muslim party, and therefore the SDS had less room
9 to express their views publicly. Therefore, announcements were made in
10 an attempt to inform the public that the Muslim authorities were
11 departing from their mandate and failing to implement the policies they
12 initially promoted.
13 Sveto Veselinovic considers that tension in Rogatica municipality
14 reached its climax during the mobilisation of the JNA unit on
15 30th of June, 1991. A number of Muslims boycotted the mobilisation, and
16 for those that did not boycott the SDA from Rogatica -- the SDA from
17 Rogatica sent buses to the place where the unit had been mobilised and
18 returned all the Muslims home. To fill the gap left by the Muslims,
19 Serbs were called up to preserve the common state. After this, the
20 Muslims attacked the JNA even more, saying it was a mono-ethnic army.
21 However, Sveto Veselinovic considers that this was caused by the SDA
23 Throughout 1991, the tensions grew and the Muslims were being
24 armed en masse. Due to his position, Sveto Veselinovic had contact with
25 a number of Muslims, and on one occasion, Hasan Sehic showed him a pistol
1 that he had received as a member of the SDA Main Board. He told
2 Sveto Veselinovic that other members had also received these pistols.
3 Due to the growing mistrust, villages -- village guards were
4 organised in late 1991, and Sveto Veselinovic was aware that Muslims had
5 also organised similar guards. The SDS made many efforts to avoid
6 clashes, and therefore they agreed to divide the municipality to prevent
7 the large-scale conflicts. However, in March 1992, a Serbian home was
8 attacked. Sveto Veselinovic suspected it was done to intimidate the
9 Serbian people. This sparked the locals to form a Territorial Defence to
10 protect against Muslim attacks.
11 In order to preserve peace and involve as many people as
12 possible, a letter was sent out to prominent people who held various
13 offices, inviting them to join the Crisis Staff. The staff was a large
14 body whose main tasks were to negotiate on the delineation of the
15 municipality's territory and the division of power. Further, during the
16 war, the work of the SDS was frozen, and the party did not engage in any
17 activities until just before the end of the war.
18 The murder of the Serb Drazenko Mihajlovic, a Serb policeman, in
19 May 1992, suspended all efforts regarding any further negotiations on
20 securing peace. After this incident, larger-scale conflicts broke out
21 and refugees appeared on both sides. On the 30th of May, 1992, a
22 commission was formed to accommodate and help the refugees. The refugees
23 were accommodated in a controlled and organised manner in abandoned
24 Muslim and Serb apartments and houses. Notices were visibly placed on
25 all the doors stating that moving in without the commission's
1 authorisation or decision was prohibited.
2 At this time, due to the growing insecurity in the town and
3 shooting in the streets, both Serbs and Muslims left the town and moved
4 to its suburbs and further away. Transport was organised for Serbian
5 families and at the same time, more refugees were arriving.
6 Sveto Veselinovic was aware that a number of Serbs and Muslims threatened
7 by danger in the town moved into a building of the secondary school
8 centre. From there they were sent to their desired locations.
9 When Sveto Veselinovic entered Rogatica after fighting had
10 occurred and was shocked by what he saw as the town had been entirely
11 devastated, many Serbian houses and apartments had been torched and
12 reduced to their foundations.
13 Sveto Veselinovic remembers that Dr. Karadzic was in Rogatica on
14 2nd of August, 1991, during an important religious holiday and stayed one
15 night because he was on a trip to Uzice in Serbia. He also remembers
16 that next visit to Rogatica was in autumn 1993, when Karadzic visited the
18 [Interpretation] That will be the summary.
19 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Now I would like to put to you a few questions about the
21 documents that you kindly made available to us. First of all, shall I
22 address you as Dr. Veselinovic, because you have a Ph.D., don't you?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Thank you. In one of the paragraphs here, you dealt with the
25 division of power just after the elections.
1 A. Yes. That's paragraph 5.
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] 1D12040 is the document I would
3 like to call up in e-court. 1D12040.
4 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Can you tell us, what is this record? What is the subject
7 A. This is the record from the meeting of commissions for
8 inter-party co-operation between the Serbian Democratic Party and the
9 Party of Democratic Action concerning the division of power in Rogatica
10 municipality. This record lists exhaustively all the leading positions
11 that were to be divided up between two parties who had the elections, and
12 at the end we find the signatures of all those who attended the meeting,
13 namely, seven members of the SDS and seven members of the SDA. The
14 record was done on the 4th of January, 1991, and we drafted it in less
15 than two hours. So everything was very expeditiously agreed in this
17 Q. Thank you.
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] The next page, please.
19 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Did you take part in these talks?
21 A. Yes. I'm one of the signatories.
22 Q. What does this last sentence mean?
23 A. The last sentence says that 27 mandates were allocated to the SDA
24 in this division. I can't see the --
25 Q. We'll see it on the next page. And their mandates included
1 president of the municipality as the most senior position.
2 A. Correct.
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Next page, please.
4 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Again, last sentence.
6 A. The Serbian Democratic Party got a total of 21 mandates in line
7 with the structure of the votes won we divided the power.
8 Q. And what was the most important position for the SDS?
9 A. Chairman of the Executive Board.
10 Q. Thank you.
11 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we see the last page, please.
12 Yes, last page.
13 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. Are these the participants in the talks?
15 A. Yes. These are the signatures. On the left are those from the
16 SDA. At the very bottom is the signature of the president of their
17 party. And on the right-hand side we see the signatures of the
18 participants from the Serbian Democratic Party, and at the bottom is my
19 signature as president of the SDS.
20 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can this document be MFI'd, please.
21 JUDGE KWON: Yes, we'll mark it for identification.
22 THE REGISTRAR: As MFI'd D2957, Your Honours.
23 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
24 Q. You mentioned it in the statement, but can you tell us, how did
25 the first disagreements arise erasing this idyll from just after the
2 A. The first disagreements broke out after -- about the
3 implementation of this agreement concerning certain positions. Approval
4 from republic organs had to be obtained, such as the position of chief of
5 the police station and the commander of the police station in Rogatica.
6 The ministry of the MUP of Bosnia-Herzegovina sent their approval for a
7 Muslim to be appointed chief of the police station, but they did not send
8 approval for a Serb to be appointed commander of the police station.
9 That is why we organised the protest before the building of the
10 Municipal Assembly where I read out our demand that our representative be
11 appointed to his post as well. And the local Muslims did not have any
12 problem with our protest. Even our Muslim friend who worked for the MUP
13 promised his help, wrote directly to the republic MUP and ensured that
14 both appointments were approved. This was covered by the media, and I
15 believe on the 16th of May, 1991, a story appeared in the newspaper
17 Q. Thank you. Is there anything in the developments at the level of
18 Yugoslavia that perhaps contributed to rising tensions?
19 A. Certainly. As things got more and more complicated at the level
20 of Yugoslavia, the local Muslims appeared less and less cooperative,
21 adhered less and less to the agreements we had reached, and began obeying
22 instructions from the SDA head office.
23 Q. Thank you.
24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could we now see 1D12047, please.
1 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
2 Q. This is a press release you made on behalf of the Regional Board
3 of SDS for Romanija, dated 11 May 1991. Can you tell us what is the gist
4 of this press release?
5 A. The events unfolding on the territory of Yugoslavia, including
6 Bosnia and Herzegovina, created an increasing rift between the Muslim
7 people and the Serbian people and stoked hatred on the part of Muslims
8 and Croats towards Serbs. This is about tying the Croatian and Muslim
9 flags into an unbreakable knot, stopping the JNA column at Siroki Brijeg
10 and preventing them from carrying out their military drills. This also
11 contains a critique of Sarajevo media who were more and more biased in
12 favour of Muslims, and information that the Serbs tried to put out in the
13 media was stopped, and even this press release could not be placed in
14 their media. We could only publish it in our local media and the local
15 radio Sokolac.
16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can this be MFI'd, please.
17 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
18 THE REGISTRAR: MFI 2958, Your Honours.
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
20 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
21 Q. You were also a member of the Crisis Staff in Rogatica
22 municipality; correct?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Was that a one-party Crisis Staff or was it a Crisis Staff that
25 was a body of authority?
1 A. First of all, we created a Crisis Staff within the party that was
2 intended to inform our central party authorities about all that was going
3 on in our municipality. However, when problems escalated to such an
4 extent that we, representatives of the Serbian Democratic Party, became
5 unable to deal with them on our own, or better to say we did not have the
6 mandate from the SDS leadership to take our people to war, we had to
7 invite all the prominent Serbs in Rogatica who were not SDS members but
8 had been in leading positions in business, in the economy, et cetera,
9 inviting them to join a new Crisis Staff of Rogatica that would not be a
10 mono-party unit but would be made up of prominent people from all over
11 Rogatica. Such a staff was indeed established on the 8th of April, 1992,
12 and Mr. Milorad Sokolovic was appointed chairman of this Crisis Staff of
13 which I was a member.
14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could we see 1D12050, please.
15 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Dr. Veselinovic, were you elected immediately or a bit later?
17 A. Mr. President, in your introduction, you mentioned that two
18 grenades were thrown at a Serb house in Borike. That house belonged to
19 Rajko Kusic, a member of our SDS. When his house was bombed, he withdrew
20 to Borike. He linked up the, until then, disorganised local guards, and
21 he formed the Territorial Defence under the law that said that a local
22 commune had the right to form its own Territorial Defence in case of an
23 immediate threat of war.
24 Rajko Kusic and I continued to work for preserving peace with the
25 Muslim side. It was our hope that we will achieve peace, because
1 Izetbegovic had signed the Cutileiro Plan, otherwise known as the
2 Lisbon Agreement, but when Alija Izetbegovic withdrew his signature, the
3 Territorial Defence at Borike believed that further negotiations were
4 pointless. They had information that Muslims were very hastily preparing
5 for war and might attack at any minute. That attack would involve
6 liquidating all prominent Serbs in the municipality in one night.
7 Mr. Kusic said he did not want to bear responsibility if that
8 happened, if all the Serbs were killed, and he said that we had to attack
9 them first. I, Tomislav Batinic, and Mr. Ujic did not agree. We thought
10 that peace had no alternative and that we had no mandate to take the
11 Serbian people to war. That evening, the three of us resigned on all our
12 positions in the Serb Democratic Party.
13 The next day I spoke to Kusic, I proposed to him to invite all
14 the Serbs from the territory of the municipality, involve them in our
15 joint work and form a new Crisis Staff at the level of the municipality.
16 Kusic agreed. The next day I invited all those people, talked to them.
17 They agreed, but they required that their appointments be verified by
18 some authority. We called up the -- we convened the Municipal Board of
19 the party, and their appointments were verified.
20 I personally was not quite happy, though. In order to prove to
21 myself and to the Serbian people that I did not care for a high position
22 at any cost, and I don't want to see other people get killed under my bad
23 command, I myself put on a uniform and joined a JNA unit that had been
24 formed in -- sorry, a Territorial Defence unit that had been formed at
1 Q. I didn't want you to repeat what you said in the statement. I'm
2 just asking about this new Crisis Staff after your resignations. On the
3 21st of May, as we see here, you were mobilised onto the Crisis Staff.
4 Can you read this out, when you were mobilised? You cannot on the screen
5 but I can see it on paper. Who signed this and from what party is this
7 A. I received a summons when I was in the unit of the JNA. I
8 received a summons that I was mobilised and deployed to the Crisis Staff
9 and that I should immediately report to the Crisis Staff. The signature
10 of the decision that I was issued is that of the president of the
11 Crisis Staff, Mile Sokolovic, who was appointed on the 8th of April as
12 president of the Crisis Staff. He's not from the Serbian Democratic
13 Party. I think he's from the Democratic Alliance, that party.
14 Q. Thank you. Line 20, page 40, instead of "Rajko Kusic and myself
15 continued, we remained in Rogatica," I think that you said that it was
16 you and Mile Ujic and Tomislav Batinic who stayed; is that correct?
17 A. Yes, that is correct.
18 Q. Thank you.
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I would like to tender this
20 document, please. I would like it MFI'd, please.
21 JUDGE KWON: Ms. Gustafson.
22 MS. GUSTAFSON: I just note that there is a more legible version
23 of this document that we were provided, but it appears that that more
24 legible version is not in e-court yet.
25 JUDGE KWON: Together with English translation?
1 MS. GUSTAFSON: There is no English translation.
2 JUDGE KWON: Yes. If we have more legible one, could you replace
3 it later. Yes. We'll mark it for identification.
4 THE REGISTRAR: As MFI D2959, Your Honours.
5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
6 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. Were you dealing with any other aspects of the crisis or problems
8 in the Rogatica municipality? Were you in any ad hoc bodies besides your
9 regular work duties?
10 A. My specific task in the Crisis Staff was initially to deal with
11 organisation, reception, and accommodation of refugees. After Rogatica
12 was liberated, I was charged with going into the town with a group of
13 retired carpenters to protect the town from break-ins and robberies,
14 which means that I entered the town first immediately after the
15 liberators, and since I had a camera with me, I recorded the situation as
16 I found it in that town.
17 Q. Thank you.
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Regarding the refugees, could we
19 look at 1D12051, please, in e-court. 12051.
20 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
21 Q. Could you please tell us what this document is.
22 A. This document was issued by the Crisis Staff. It's a decision on
23 forming a commission for refugees and for resolving the matter of their
24 accommodation. I was the president of that commission, and it was signed
25 by the president of the Crisis Staff, Mile Sokolovic.
1 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. I would like to tender
2 this, please.
3 JUDGE KWON: We'll mark it for identification.
4 THE REGISTRAR: As MFI D2960, Your Honours.
5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
6 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. Were you later appointed to a leadership post in the
9 A. When there was no longer any need for the Crisis Staff, the
10 Executive Board was formed and I became a member of the Executive Board,
11 and my specific assignment was to be the secretary of the Secretariat for
12 General Administration and for the finance administration or revenue.
13 Q. Thank you.
14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we look at 12054 now, please.
15 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Dr. Veselinovic, what is this document about?
17 A. This is a document that was issued by the Executive Board of the
18 municipality of Rogatica. It is a decision on assignment to work duty
19 where I am assigned to work in the Executive Board of the municipality of
20 Rogatica, and I was assigned to the Executive Board and also acting
21 director of the revenue administration, and it was signed --
22 Q. And where do you know that this was the Executive Board?
23 A. It states:
24 "On the basis of Article 7, item 2 of the regulation or
25 organising and executing work duty Official Gazette of the Serbian
1 Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina," then it says, "the president of the
2 Executive Board adopts the following decision."
3 Q. Thank you.
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we tender this document,
6 JUDGE KWON: We'll mark it for identification.
7 THE REGISTRAR: As MFI D2961, Your Honours.
8 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. Other than the commission for the accommodation of refugees, was
10 there any other commission charged with assisting the refugees, and did
11 you play any role in any commission if there was such a commission?
12 A. The first document that you showed me was the decision appointing
13 me as the president of the commission, which was issued before we
14 received the Official Gazette notifying us about the adoption of the Law
15 on Refugees. Then there was a document issued pursuant to the new law as
16 well as a document appointing me commissioner for refugees for direct
17 co-operation and contacts with the republican commissioner for refugees.
18 Q. Thank you.
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we look at 1D12052, please.
20 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
21 Q. What is this document? Who issued it?
22 A. This document was issued by the Serbian municipality of Rogatica,
23 Executive Board. It's a decision on forming a commission for assistance
24 to refugees. Again I was appointed president of that commission. It's a
25 new body that issued a new decision in accordance with the law as
1 published in the Official Gazette of the Serbian people of Bosnia and
2 Herzegovina, number 792, the Executive Board of the Serbian municipality
3 of Rogatica, and it had to do with assisting refugees. It was signed by
4 the president, Milorad Sokolovic.
5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. I would like to tender
6 this document, please.
7 JUDGE KWON: Again we'll mark it for identification.
8 THE REGISTRAR: As MFI D2962, Your Honours.
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
10 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. Dr. Veselinovic, you mentioned today in your testimony, as well
12 as in your statement, in paragraph 18, that you were the first one to
13 enter Rogatica after it was liberated. When did you enter Rogatica, and
14 under whose control was it before that or up until then?
15 A. The centre of the town was under the control of the Muslim
16 forces. After combat and after Rogatica was freed by Serbian forces - I
17 don't know the exact date when it was finally liberated, but it was
18 sometime in July - as member of these commissions and the Presidency
19 entrusted with care for refugees and security and safety of abandoned
20 property on behalf of the Crisis Staff or the Executive Board at the
21 time, I entered the town intending to record how I found it and to form a
22 group in order to protect the abandoned properties from robberies and
23 theft. So this was maybe some five or six days after the final
24 liberation when units of the Serbian Army had already withdrawn from
25 Rogatica, leaving just some individual guards. And the population was
1 still not permitted to enter the town.
2 Q. Now I would like to ask you to give us your comments on the video
3 footage that you made at the time.
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we look at 1D7229, please, and
5 then I will give you the counter number. So 1D7229, please. The first
6 clip is from 1 minute 20 seconds to 1 minute 37 seconds. That's the
7 first clip.
8 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. And whenever you think it's appropriate, could you please explain
10 to the Trial Chamber what it is that we are seeing.
11 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we play the footage, please,
12 from 1:20 to 1:37, please.
13 [Video-clip played]
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In this footage we're going to see
15 what the destroyed town looks like, broken shop windows, the goods in the
16 shops looted, burned-out storefronts, the town completely destroyed and
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we now look at 12:29 to 12:34,
19 please. That would be the timer.
20 [Video-clip played]
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] We can see a knocked-down and
22 burned house belonging to my wife's family. Please take note of the
23 grass around the house, meaning that the burning is not something that
24 was a result of the combat, but it was something that occurred a month
25 before that, meaning that the house was torched immediately after the
1 Serbs left it, left the inner city, the centre. All the houses belonging
2 to Serbs and a good part of the apartments belonging to them were burned.
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we now look at 16:32 up to
4 17:00. 16:32 to 17:00, please. This is the next clip.
5 [Video-clip played]
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] What we see in this footage is an
7 abandoned machine-gun nest abandoned of the Muslim forces abandoned when
8 they left the town. This machine-gun nest is located in the area of the
9 upper town on top of a building and it faced the nearby local hill where
10 the Serbian settlements were.
11 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. Whose machine-gun nest is it? It's not recorded in the
14 A. It's a Muslim machine-gun nest at the top of a building, and they
15 abandoned it when they were pulling out. They were probably withdrawing
16 very quickly, and it was difficult for them to take the machine-gun down
17 from the top of the building to take it with them.
18 Q. And what do you see on these roofs that we see in front of the
19 building, this first roof, the closest one?
20 A. Well, you can see the broken roof tiles, partially destroyed
22 Q. Thank you. And what were the buildings that they used or
23 facilities in order to place machine-gun nests there?
24 A. Besides this one, there is another one that we're going to see.
25 They used predominantly tall buildings, tall positions from where they
1 could see the entire town, the lower and upper parts of the town where
2 the Serbs were. And we can include their mosques and the minarets of the
3 mosques among those tall buildings from which sniper action was also
5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we now look at 19:26 to 20:15
6 on the counter. 19:26 to 20:15.
7 [Video-clip played]
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the centre of town. The
9 building that you see is where my brother Lazar had his apartment. There
10 were two other apartments belonging to two Serbs, Ljubo Coric and
11 Radenko Perisic. All those apartments were burned. What you are seeing
12 right now is a hotel. That was also torched. It was also set on fire as
13 they were withdrawing.
14 And then in the next shot we can see sandbags. This is probably
15 another machine-gun nest. No weapons were found here, but what you
16 cannot see on the footage is that on the left-hand side is the municipal
17 building and the building of the police.
18 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. Thank you.
20 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we look at the last clip,
21 please, from 21:34 to 22:10.
22 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. And if I may ask you to explain to us what we are seeing here.
24 [Video-clip played]
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the mosque burned down in
1 the town. I don't know how it burned down, but I would like you to look
2 at the next shot. Only 30 metres away from the mosque is their second
3 machine-gun nest. Probably our artillery in an attempt to neutralise
4 this machine-gun nest could have made an error and have hit the mosque.
5 Just a little bit earlier, I did mention that there was talk of them also
6 having snipers on top of their mosques too.
7 Q. Thank you.
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Your Excellencies, I would like to
9 tender these clips into the evidence.
10 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Ms. Gustafson.
11 MS. GUSTAFSON: No objection.
12 JUDGE KWON: Yes. We'll admit those clips that we saw in one
14 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit D2963, Your Honours.
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we now please look at 1D7228,
16 please, from 6:13 to 7:32, please. 06 -- actually, 00:03 to 53.
17 Actually, 00 to 3:53. From the very beginning, running up to 3:53.
18 [Video-clip played]
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This footage shows the refugees
20 from Gorazde who were expelled on the 27th of August, 1992, by Muslims
21 from their hearths. A column of these refugees came up against a Muslim
22 ambush in which 25 of them were killed and more than 80 wounded. I would
23 like to draw your attention to the fact that none of these people have
24 weapons. This means that these were exclusively civilians, men, women,
25 children, who were attacked by the Muslim forces.
1 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
2 Q. How many of them arrived from Gorazde?
3 A. I don't know. What I do know is that a bit less than 1.000 of
4 them remained in Rogatica, because I could see that from my lists of
5 refugees. Most of them, though, the very next day went to Serbia via
6 Vlasenica and Zvornik.
7 That evening, a member of the Presidency, Ms. Biljana Plavsic,
8 arrived. She spoke with them and tried to have them stay in Rogatica,
9 promising that they would be accommodated in empty houses and flats.
10 However, most of them still went to Serbia via Vlasenica and Zvornik.
11 Q. Thank you. Dr. Veselinovic, can you tell us what did it all mean
12 for the municipality? In other words, how successful was the
13 municipality in dealing with the situation given the numbers of destroyed
14 homes and the lack of housing units?
15 A. Many of those refugees who arrived in such a short time put an
16 end to our attempts to prevent the destruction of any abandoned
17 properties. It wasn't only them but also refugees from our
18 municipalities who entered such premises and found accommodation there.
19 They also entered many houses unlawfully, taking away things that were --
20 they needed for normal life like bed linen and different items. That was
21 because they had only the several items left which they could fit into
22 the trunks of their cars as they were leaving their homes. You can see
23 the women and children here.
24 Q. Thank you. What are the age groups of these people?
25 A. We can see in the footage that there are very small children as
1 well as the elderly who are over 80 years old.
2 Q. Thank you.
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we now go to 06:13 to 07:32.
4 [Video-clip played]
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This footage shows how we tried to
6 protect the housing units. We see the piece of paper that was placed on
7 the door prohibiting entry. However, the situation was simply such that
8 we could not follow through on what we had envisaged, and many buildings
9 and flats were entered and people took away whatever they needed such as
10 clothing items, footwear, et cetera. Of course, those who primarily
11 wanted to loot also found fruitful ground. You can see what an apartment
12 looks like after this turmoil in Rogatica.
13 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. This was left behind by our refugees; right?
15 A. Well, when we were locking apartments, they were mostly tidy.
16 This means that what we can see here was left behind by not only our
17 refugees but also different kinds of dogs of war, if I can call them
19 Q. Thank you.
20 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I seek to tender these few
22 JUDGE KWON: Ms. Gustafson?
23 MS. GUSTAFSON: We have no objection the latter clip. It appears
24 to have some relevance. The first clip depicting the gathering of Serbs
25 from Gorazde and Rogatica doesn't appear to have any relevance to the
1 charges in this case, and we object on that basis.
2 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Robinson.
3 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. President. I think the testimony
4 couldn't be understood without it, and it's clearly relevant because it
5 shows the arrival of all the refugees.
6 [Trial Chamber confers]
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] If I may, I'd like to make a
8 correction. These Serbs were not from Rogatica. These were the Serbs
9 from Rogatica who arrived in -- these were the Serbs from Gorazde who
10 arrived in Rogatica who had been ambushed, and it was a wholly new
11 problem for the municipality.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You could see the registration
13 plates on the cars indicating that they arrived from Gorazde.
14 JUDGE KWON: We heard the evidence. We'll receive it.
15 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit D2964, Your Honours.
16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. I have no further
17 questions for Dr. Veselinovic at this point.
18 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Veselinovic, as you have noted, most of your
19 evidence in chief in this case has been admitted in writing in lieu of
20 your oral testimony. Now you'll be cross-examined by the representative
21 of the Office of the Prosecutor, but before we're doing so we'll have a
22 short break.
23 But there are a couple of matters I'd like to deal with, i.e.,
24 I'd like to issue two oral rulings.
25 First thing, the Chamber is seized of the accused's request for
1 state representative to be present in the courtroom with respect to
2 Ambassador Jose Cutileiro which was filed on the 4th of February, 2013,
3 in which the accused submits that Ambassador Cutileiro requested that two
4 representatives of the government of Portugal be present in the courtroom
5 during his testimony.
6 After having reviewed the information contained in the
7 correspondence filed by the accused on the 15th of February, 2013, the
8 Chamber is satisfied that it is in the interests of justice to allow the
9 two Portuguese representatives to be present in the courtroom during
10 Ambassador Cutileiro's testimony. Accordingly, the Chamber grants the
12 In addition, the Chamber requests the Registry to provide the
13 transcript of this ruling to Portugal.
14 Next is related to the Prosecution's request for leave to reply
15 to Karadzic's response to Prosecution motion to exclude Vasiljevic
17 Since the Chamber finds that it would be in the interests of
18 justice, the Chamber hereby allows the -- grants the request.
19 We'll have a short break for 15 minutes and resume at 5 to 12.00.
20 --- Recess taken at 11.39 a.m.
21 --- On resuming at 11.56 a.m.
22 JUDGE KWON: Ms. Gustafson, please proceed.
23 MS. GUSTAFSON: Your Honours, good afternoon.
24 Cross-examination by Ms. Gustafson:
25 Q. And good afternoon, Mr. Veselinovic.
1 A. Good afternoon.
2 Q. Now, it's clear from your evidence that you were the president --
3 the first president of the SDS in Rogatica. Until when exactly, to the
4 best of your recollection, did you hold that position?
5 A. On the 25th of March, I submitted my resignation to all positions
6 in the party and municipality. However, the Municipal Assembly, which
7 sat on the 8th of April, when the Crisis Staff was established, did not
8 accept my resignation in entirety but, actually, they froze my status.
9 As the war broke out, the party no longer functioned properly from the
10 level of the republic down, and following that, I was engaged solely in
11 such activities as issued to me by the president of the Crisis Staff.
12 Perhaps sometime in 1994, party life developed again, and there were
13 elections for president. In 1998, I was again in that position for a
14 mandate of about four years, which was after the war.
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Correction for the transcript. In
16 line 12, the witness said that from the republican level party life was
17 put on hold as well. That's not what found its way in the transcript.
18 JUDGE KWON: I think it was there, but let's continue.
19 MS. GUSTAFSON:
20 Q. Okay. You said that you submitted your resignation from all your
21 positions in the party on the 25th of March, which I understand was 1992,
22 and then from your evidence earlier this morning, it was sometime after
23 that that you joined a TO unit. Do you remember when exactly you joined
24 the TO unit?
25 A. I did not join a TO unit. I joined a JNA unit. It was a brigade
1 which was located at Han Pijesak. One of its units, its battalion, was
2 in Rogatica. I joined the unit two or three days following my
3 resignation. In other words, I held a meeting with the Serbs from
4 Rogatica municipality, with prominent members of the leadership past and
5 present, I agreed on their participation in the work of the Crisis Staff
6 and left only to join the unit.
7 Q. Okay. So that was sometime towards the end of March, and then
8 you also in your evidence earlier said that, if I understand correctly,
9 while you were in this JNA unit, you were then summoned and mobilised to
10 work at the Crisis Staff, and you were shown a document indicating that
11 mobilisation, and it had a mobilisation date of the 21st of May, 1992.
12 And that's MFI D2959.
13 So is it correct on the 21st of May or thereabouts you left the
14 JNA unit and began working for the Crisis Staff?
15 A. I think I left the unit even before that. The decision arrived
16 later for organisational reasons. The unit I was in following my
17 departure went in the direction of Sarajevo, to the area of Grbavica to
18 be more specific.
19 Q. Okay. Well, the Chamber's heard evidence that that unit went to
20 the area of Grbavica at the beginning of May. So do you think you left
21 your JNA unit sometime around the beginning of May or before?
22 A. Before the unit went to Sarajevo.
23 Q. Okay. So we can agree, then, that you were in this -- for the --
24 in 1992, you were only a member of this JNA unit for a brief period of
25 time between sometime in late March and sometime in early May. Is that
2 A. As of early April until late May.
3 Q. Okay. Now, I'd like to move on to another topic which relates to
4 paragraph 21 of your statement, where it says that you were shown the
5 statement of a Muslim who listed the types of weapons he had in his
6 village. The prior version of your statement that we received identified
7 this statement as that of Fehim Kapo from Kramer Selo. And as you note
8 in your statement, Mr. Kapo had stated that they had 40 automatic rifles,
9 some hunting rifles and some explosives in the village. And you say,
10 "This indicates that all the other villages were similarly armed," and
11 then you go on to complain about "evidence," and you put that term in
12 quotes in your statement, that the Muslims disseminated in the media
13 about Serbs arming and that they were under threat as result because they
14 did not have any weapons.
15 MS. GUSTAFSON: If we could have 65 ter 1D07560, please.
16 Q. Now, I take it from your statement that you were shown this
17 statement of Mr. Kapo's by the Defence investigators, and they were you
18 were asked to draw some conclusions about the general level of arming by
19 the Muslims based on that statement. Is that accurate?
20 A. This statement only confirms what we knew. If in a village of
21 57 households and 222 inhabitants -- I have it noted down in my
22 notebooks, because I took part in the 1991 census. This witness said
23 himself that they had 40 automatic rifles, some hunting rifles, and some
24 explosive ordnance. If we take that data, that there were 40 automatic
25 rifles for 50 households and every household had around four members, two
1 of which were children and the wife and husband, it means that any
2 able -- any and every able-bodied man had an automatic rifle in a village
3 which was not of strategic importance for the Muslims. If you take that,
4 you can only imagine how well armed they were in the town itself and
5 other villages.
6 We had known that before, and I mentioned in my statement, that
7 as the director of the public revenue administration, I was in contact
8 with many Muslims, because I was in charge of assessing taxes based on
9 movable and immovable property, taxes levied on economic activity for
10 companies and entrepreneurs. It means, in other words, that I was aware
11 of the information pertaining to every taxpayer in the town itself.
12 Q. I interrupted you because we've moved away from the direct
13 question that I'd asked you, and I'd ask you to please focus on the
14 precise question I'm asking and try to limit your answers to respond just
15 to that precise question, and I will try to keep my questions precise.
16 Now, I'd like to direct your attention to a passage in this
17 statement beginning about halfway down the first paragraph, and it says:
18 "Having followed the developments in April 1992 and the
19 preparations on the part of the former JNA, which was joined by the local
20 Serbian population, we, the inhabitants of the village, organised village
21 guards. We would observe them deploy weapons and artillery pieces around
22 our village and train their barrels on our village, allegedly afraid of
23 us being numerous and armed. The weapons and artillery pieces deployed
24 included four tanks, two armoured personnel carriers, an unidentified
25 number of cannons and mortars and other small arms."
1 And then Mr. Kapo goes on to identify Mr. Boban Jesic and
2 Rajko Kusic as the commanders in the area. And in the next page in the
3 English, he says:
4 "In contrast to them, we had around 40 submachine-guns and a
5 number of hunting rifles and explosive devices."
6 So it's clear, as you indicate in your statement, that Mr. Kapo
7 said that the Muslims of Kramer Selo had 40 automatic weapons and hunting
8 rifles and some explosive devices, but it's also clear that the Muslims
9 of Kramer Selo were nevertheless under threat from a far more powerful
10 array of Serb weapons deployed around their villages, namely, tanks,
11 APCs, cannons, and mortars. That's right, isn't it?
12 A. That is not right. A moment ago you said yourself that there was
13 a JNA unit which for a period was stationed in Sjemec and then went to
14 Sarajevo. They were fully equipped in terms of weaponry. Our TO was
15 armed in a similar way as the Muslims. In other words, with infantry
16 weapons. The TO did not have any tanks or any heavy weapons. According
17 to military speciality, all those who could man and service tanks and
18 heavy weapons joined the unit which went to Sarajevo. The TO comprised
19 elderly men as well as younger men who perhaps had not served their
20 military service at the time.
21 This witness's statement on the type of weapons is incorrect.
22 Q. Well, the Chamber has received evidence from Mr. Ujic, who was a
23 witness for the Defence and who actually co-ordinated artillery for the
24 Rogatica Brigade, that at some point in time there was artillery
25 surrounding this village because he testified to personally commanding --
1 or personally co-ordinating, sorry, the shelling attack of Kramer Selo,
2 an attack that caused the population to flee and resulted in the wounding
3 of some children by shrapnel. And I refer to transcript pages 33466 to
5 Were you unaware of the fact that this village was ultimately
6 shelled and the population fled?
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we have the quote and time that
8 Ujic's statement refers to? Was the JNA still there or -- can we have a
9 reference for the quote?
10 JUDGE KWON: Did you check the page numbers Ms. Gustafson
11 referred to? Please come back after checking in the transcript.
12 MS. GUSTAFSON: In any event, Your Honours, the question was
13 framed that at some point in time there was artillery surrounding the
14 village, so I think the question is fair regardless of the time period.
15 JUDGE KWON: I think the witness will be able to deal with this.
16 Can you answer the question, Mr. Veselinovic?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, perhaps that question should
18 be put to Mr. Mile Ujic again to clarify what period it concerns.
19 Finally, he took part in those operations. I don't know what units they
20 acted in co-ordination with them. At the time, I was at the
21 Crisis Staff, and I wasn't familiar with it. The army was under no
22 obligation to inform us of their plans and operations, as well as with
23 the kind of weapons they had at their disposal to attack. It is my
24 subjective opinion that such unit, knowing the people who remained in the
25 area and who were not any military experts -- well, Mile perhaps was the
1 only military officer. As a member of the Executive Board and the Crisis
2 Staff, he remained in the area.
3 Q. Okay. And at paragraph 11 of your statement, you assert that the
4 Muslims were being armed en masse, and as support for that assertion you
5 explain how you learned that some SDA members in Rogatica had received
6 pistols. You don't say anything in your statement about Serb arming.
7 However, the Chamber heard extensive and detailed evidence from
8 Asim Dzambasovic, who was the Chief of Staff of the 216th Brigade of the
9 JNA, regarding JNA arming of Serbs in Rogatica in the period leading up
10 to the war. And I refer to P2828, paragraphs 41 to 54. And that
11 evidence included his diary entry for the 29th of January, 1992, where he
13 "Despite the irrefutable arguments, the commander does not want
14 to undertake measures against the ones who are stealing the weapons. He
15 is encouraging distribution of weapons and is giving them away by his own
16 free will. Superior command Colonel Gagovic and Djurdjevac second this
18 Now, were you aware of these concerns expressed at the level of
19 the brigade command regarding the arming of Serbs by the JNA in Rogatica
20 supported by the brigade and corps command?
21 A. The Yugoslav People's Army did not arm Serbs in Rogatica. The
22 JNA supplied weapons to Serbs who joined the JNA. Otherwise, there was
23 no need for them to give anyone any weapons. When the Muslims decided to
24 ignore mobilisation call-ups and stopped joining the JNA, the JNA became
25 mostly Serbs, but otherwise the army provided weapons only to new
1 conscripts. The JNA did not need to supply weapons to Serbs. The Serbs
2 were anxious to keep the JNA as a force keeping their state together. So
3 what this witness said in his evidence is not true.
4 Q. Okay. In regard to the mobilisation you just referred to, I'd
5 like to go to -- I believe it's D2953. It's an associated exhibit
6 admitted this morning.
7 Mr. Veselinovic, you referred in your statement in several places
8 to your efforts to preserve peace, and you reiterated that in your
9 evidence this morning. And this is a "Politika" article from July 1991
10 that you described in your statement at paragraph 14, and it relates to
11 the JNA mobilisation that the Chamber's heard evidence occurred in June
12 of 1991. And in the second paragraph it states that the Serbs
13 responded -- or the Serbs left en masse for the front, and that's a claim
14 you also make in paragraph 10.
15 And in the article you complain that only 10 per cent of the
16 Muslim reservists who responded to the mobilisation went to Banja Luka,
17 whereas the Serbs responded in the largest numbers, and you state that
18 this left the Serbian villages deserted.
19 Now, again, Mr. Dzambasovic, who at the time was -- participated
20 in implementing this mobilisation and who went to Banja Luka with the
21 conscripts, gave evidence that there was a general failure by both Serbs
22 and Muslims to respond to this mobilisation. And then there was a
23 further mass refusal by the soldiers to go to Banja Luka because they
24 were afraid of being sent to Vukovar and getting killed. And as a
25 result, of the 4.000 soldiers in the brigade at the time, only about 800
1 of any ethnicity went to the front. And that's at Exhibit P2828,
2 paragraphs 14 to 26.
3 So the basic premise of this article that the Serbs responded en
4 masse to this mobilisation is -- leaving the elderly, children, and
5 female Serbs vulnerable to Muslim attacks, is at best a major
6 exaggeration because, in fact, only about 1 in 5 brigade soldiers of any
7 ethnicity went to the front. Isn't that right?
8 A. That is not so. We heard this morning that just a few Muslims
9 responded to the mobilisation call-up who went back very quickly because
10 the SDA had sent buses to fetch them in Banja Luka and bring them back.
11 Some people responded, but only thanks to our efforts and agitation,
12 because they had not even received the call-up papers because the SDA
13 blocked normal, regular mobilisation because they hid the military
15 The entire unit was not even planned to go to Banja Luka, the
16 unit made up of Serbs. But when the Muslims started ignoring the
17 mobilisation call-ups, the fear became real. If the Serb villages are
18 empty, if there are not enough able-bodied men to protect them and the
19 Muslims -- the Muslim men were still there because they had not joined
20 the army, we were thinking why are they organising themselves if they are
21 not joining the army?
22 You cannot imagine it, but at that time refusing the call-up
23 meant a long prison sentence, because you were treated like an enemy of
24 the state. So you could only do that wishing that the unit would be --
25 fall apart, that the state would fall apart and you would never be held
1 responsible, and that meant in turn that you are doing everything to
2 destroy that state.
3 So our fears were justified. We believed the Muslim objective
4 was to destroy the state, and that's why they were trying to prevent even
5 the Serbs from staying within the army.
6 Q. Okay. It's clear your evidence is that this failure to respond
7 to the mobilisation was part of a plot to destroy the state. And in this
8 article you are quoted as saying:
9 "We have a message for all those who are preparing dirty war
10 plans, that the Serbs in Bosnia and Herzegovina are ready and that 1941
11 will never be repeated."
12 Your reference to 1941 here is an evocation of the mass murder
13 and persecution of Serbs during World War II, an event I suspect you
14 would probably characterize as a genocide; is that right?
15 A. Yes. In 1941, the Serb people were destroyed.
16 Q. Okay. Thank you. I'd just like you to keep your answers as
17 precise as possible. And -- and --
18 A. My answer is yes, the Serb people were destroyed in 1941, but our
19 readiness -- I did not finish.
20 Q. I had just asked for you to confirm that you -- what you were
21 referring to regarding the events of 1941. I think your answer's clear.
22 And then when you said, "We have a message for all those who are
23 preparing dirty war plans, the Serbs in Bosnia-Herzegovina are ready and
24 that 1941 will never be repeated," you were warning that the Muslims are
25 preparing war plans that involve the destruction of the Serb people akin
1 to what happened in 1941, and that the Serbs are ready to use force in
2 the face of this Muslim threat; is that right?
3 A. No, that's not right. I didn't say that the Serbs were ready to
4 use force. I said this they were ready to stop it from happening again.
5 They would not be sitting in their houses waiting to be rounded up, taken
6 to camps and killed. They were ready to join the JNA, the legitimate
7 army, and defend the state in which they had lived, in which they were
8 born, and they wanted to continue living in. I didn't say that they were
9 ready to respond with force and kill. That's not written there. Please
10 do not put words in my mouth.
11 Q. By disseminating this warning that the Muslims are planning mass
12 murder, as you call it, destruction of the Serb people, and saying that
13 the Serbs are ready to respond to that threat, such a statement coming
14 from the head of the SDS in Rogatica in July 1991, that could only have
15 added to the fears and ethnic tensions at the time. Don't you agree?
16 A. I don't agree. That's not so. It was a warning to those Serbs
17 who hadn't yet woken up, who were still believing in brotherhood and
18 unity. It was a warning to them that we could be tricked again. We were
19 putting to them real facts that they could not learn from BH media.
20 Serbs had no access to the media in Bosnia-Herzegovina. That's why I
21 approached the daily "Politika" that was published and printed in
22 Belgrade and was still widely read in our region and enjoyed trust.
23 Q. Okay. At paragraph 14 of your statement - I'm moving on now to
24 another topic - you state that --
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] May I just say something?
1 Concerning that intervention on pages 33466 and 467, I would appreciate
2 it if Ms. Gustafson quoted properly rather than ascribing part of her
3 question to Mr. Mile Ujic. He did not say that he had taken part in the
4 attack that caused the population to flee. We would not be allowed to do
5 this, misrepresenting one witness's statement to another witness. He
6 said -- you can look up, for instance, 33467. Let's rewind.
7 "The point of our offer was you hand over your weapons, you live
8 peacefully and normally. If there is fire coming from a village, it's
9 not a village any more. It's a military target, a legitimate military
10 target, especially after the killings that happened on that road."
11 JUDGE KWON: Shall we proceed or would you like to respond,
12 Ms. Gustafson?
13 MS. GUSTAFSON: I would like to proceed. I will look back again
14 at the transcript reference and respond in due course.
15 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
16 MS. GUSTAFSON: Thank you.
17 Q. Mr. Veselinovic, on -- at paragraph 14 of your statement, you
19 "On the 22nd of May, the Muslims were finally ready for the war
20 and carried out an attack on the Serbs. "
21 Now I take it you were not involved in planning or implementing
22 any military activities in Rogatica at this time in late May; is that
24 A. On the 2nd of May, that Serb policeman Mihajlovic Drazenko was
25 killed and the chairman of our Crisis Staff, Mile Sokolovic, called upon
1 the opposite side to let us recover the body of that policeman.
2 Q. My question was whether you were involved in planning or
3 implementing any military activities in Rogatica at this time, late May.
4 If you could please answer that question.
5 A. No.
6 Q. Okay. Now, I'm going to put it to you that your evidence about
7 the Muslims attacking the Serbs on the 22nd of May is completely untrue.
8 The Serbs attacked the Muslims of Rogatica on the 22nd of May by shelling
9 parts of the town in Muslim-populated villages and carrying out an
10 infantry attack on parts of the town. Do you agree or disagree?
11 A. I know for a fact that the first person killed in Rogatica was
12 Drazenko Mihajlovic, and he was killed in May. Whether it was the
13 22nd of May, I can't say, but the killing of Drazenko Mihajlovic was the
14 first Serb killed. You interrupted me a moment ago when I was saying the
15 president of our Crisis Staff contacted the Muslim side, asking them to
16 approve that we recover the body and bury him, and they answered, "When
17 we kill another 10, then we will let you have all the bodies." That's
18 what I learnt from our president, and that was our last telephone contact
19 with them. After that, all-out war began.
20 Now, what was attacked, in what sequence, I really can't say. I
21 don't know.
22 Q. Okay. So just to be clear, when you said that on 22nd of May the
23 Muslims were finally ready for the war and carried out an attack on the
24 Serbs, that attack you're talking about is the killing of
25 Drazenko Mihajlovic; is that right?
1 A. Yes.
2 MS. GUSTAFSON: Thank you. Did Your Honours want to take the
3 break at the normal time?
4 JUDGE KWON: Yes. I was about to ask you how much longer you
5 need just for planning purposes.
6 MS. GUSTAFSON: Probably just 5 to 10 minutes, Your Honours.
7 JUDGE KWON: Then we will take a break after the conclusion of
8 this witness's cross-examination.
9 MS. GUSTAFSON: Okay. Thank you.
10 Q. Mr. Veselinovic, if we can go to 65 ter 24614. I'd like to look
11 at this document. Sorry, it will be coming up on the screen.
12 This is an official note of an interview you had with the
13 Rogatica police in 2004, and it records what you told the police on that
14 occasion, and it talks about how you -- it says you were actually removed
15 from your position as party president in March of 1992. And then, this
16 is the third paragraph in the middle, it says:
17 "After a certain period of time, he joined a JNA unit, the
18 commander of which was Major Radomir Furtula. Veselinovic played the
19 role of a rear soldier. He stayed with this unit until around September
20 1992, when the Executive Committee president appointed him head of the
21 income administration on which position he remained until the end of
22 1993 ..."
23 And the next paragraph at the bottom of the English it says:
24 "Due to the fact that he was removed from the party president's
25 office and because of his service in the military, he is not aware of the
1 events surrounding the creation of the Crisis Staff or its later actions,
2 and neither is he aware of its influence on the course of the military
3 and police actions during 1992."
4 The next paragraph says:
5 "As far as the collection centres are concerned, considering that
6 he was not present in the town in the period between March and September,
7 he is aware of the existence of a collection centre at the secondary
8 school but does not know any details about its creation or command
10 And then concludes by saying that:
11 "He does not have any knowledge about the disappearance of
12 13 children from the municipality ..."
13 Now, as you can see, this note says you served in Major Furtula's
14 JNA unit from sometime around March 1992 until September 1992. We know
15 that's not true. You testified today that you were in that unit for
16 about a month, during April and May 1992.
17 It states that after you served in this unit in September of
18 1992, you were appointed head of the income administration. That's also
19 not true. You actually provided a copy of the decision appointing you
20 director of revenue administration on the 30th of June, 1992. That's
21 MFI D2961, referenced at paragraph 15 of your statement.
22 And at paragraph 15 you also state that you were appointed to
23 head of commission to accommodate refugees on the 30th of May, which is
24 corroborated by another document you provided, D2960.
25 And it also states that due to your service in the military, you
1 were not aware of events surrounding the creation of the Crisis Staff or
2 its later actions. That's also not true considering your evidence today,
3 which provided details about the creation of the Crisis Staff, its
4 functions, and your membership in it.
5 And the note states that you were not present in the town between
6 March and September 1992. Once again that is not true. You testified
7 that you first entered the town five or six days after its liberation,
8 which you stated was sometime in July, and that was at page 46 of today's
9 transcript. And you actually videotaped that event are and we saw some
10 footage of that.
11 So, Mr. Veselinovic, in essence, you did not tell the truth to
12 the Rogatica police when they interviewed you in 2004; is that right?
13 A. I don't know what the policemen wrote in this official note. I
14 told them the truth too. I could not have been in the JNA until
15 September, because they had gone to Sarajevo. I stayed and left that
16 unit before they left for Sarajevo. I don't know why they put September
17 here. That's not what I told them.
18 I told you after talking to prominent Serbs, long-time business
19 leaders, inviting them to join the Crisis Staff, I left all the
20 activities to Tomo Batinic and Mile Ujic, and I reported to a unit.
21 While I was in the unit, the Municipal Board was appointed, the mandates
22 were verified, the list of the members of the Crisis Staff was published.
23 They informed me that I was a member and invited me to return. That's
24 what I've said already. What they wrote here about the month of
25 September, it must be their mistake, or maybe a typo. That's not what I
1 stated to them.
2 All these documents that I confirmed today are then refuted by
3 this. All the -- all the decisions that I've shown you would be false.
4 All the activities that I engaged in would all be denied by this.
5 Q. Well, Mr. Veselinovic, it's not just a typo about your dates in
6 the unit. It also states that you were not present in the town between
7 March and September, and for that reason you don't know anything about
8 the collection centres. It states that due to your service in the
9 military, you have no information about the creation of the Crisis Staff
10 or its later actions. So do you have any explanation for how the
11 Rogatica police got this report of your interview with them so wrong in
12 so many ways?
13 A. They interviewed me, but this person wrote this subjectively.
14 You know what perception can be. I was not in town. They believed that
15 the Crisis Staff was outside of town, and it was, near the periphery. I
16 had no need to go into the city. I did not know what the army was doing.
17 I did not know what was going on in -- on military front lines. That's
18 what they meant what they wrote that I did not --
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] This -- the interpretation of this
20 answer is a disaster. Nothing is what the witness said. He talked about
21 perception. He said not that he believed that it was outside of town,
22 that -- he said he knows. He said that's what they meant when they said
23 he did not go into town. This cannot be followed so bad -- so bad is it.
24 MS. GUSTAFSON:
25 Q. Mr. Veselinovic, you accept that you were interviewed by the
1 Rogatica police on the 16 of June, 2004, as this document states?
2 A. Yes. Yes, I agree.
3 MS. GUSTAFSON: I tender this document, and I have no further
4 questions. Thank you.
5 MR. ROBINSON: No objection, Mr. President.
6 JUDGE KWON: Yes. We'll receive it.
7 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P6129, Your Honours.
8 JUDGE KWON: Do you have any re-examination, Mr. Karadzic?
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Excellency, certainly.
10 For instance, this document, I usually take it up from the last one.
11 JUDGE KWON: How long do you think it would last?
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Five minutes probably, not more.
13 JUDGE KWON: Then shall we conclude this witness's evidence and
14 take a break?
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes.
16 JUDGE KWON: Please proceed, Mr. Karadzic.
17 Re-examination by Mr. Karadzic:
18 Q. [Interpretation] Dr. Veselinovic, while we're still on this
19 document, did they let you read this document? Did you verify it with
20 your signature?
21 A. I can't remember, but the talk was informal. We were sitting and
22 talking. I presented them with certain facts. And later, after I left,
23 they made this official note and signed it. How they perceived all the
24 things I was saying, how completely askew it is, you can see for what is
25 written. Before or after this conversation with them, I never got this
1 paper to see it.
2 Q. Under whose command were the Serbs who received weapons from the
3 JNA, under the command of the Crisis Staff, the Territorial Defence, or a
4 third party?
5 A. All those who received weapons were under JNA command.
6 Q. Thank you. Now I have to call up a document briefly. On
7 page 66, it was put that Serbs attacked Rogatica on the 22nd of May or
8 around that date. Who was attacking and who was defending themselves on
9 that Sunday, 22nd May 1992?
10 A. I don't know the precise date when it happened, but if that is
11 believed to be the date of the fighting in town when three Serb soldiers
12 were killed, it was a total chaos after the killing of
13 Drazenko Mihajlovic.
14 Q. And who was the attacker? Who was attacking Rogatica? Who took
15 over Rogatica?
16 A. Rogatica was taken over by the Muslims. They were in Rogatica.
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we see 65 ter 6968, dated
18 23rd June -- no. Can we see the one from the 29th first, 7088.
19 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Could you please take a look at this regular operative report
21 dated 25th of June. In paragraph 5 it says up there who is where, and in
22 paragraph 5 it says they carried out offensive actions against our
23 positions in that area.
24 Did the Serb army go into Rogatica before this definitive
1 A. They couldn't. We couldn't walk around Rogatica saying, Now we
2 won't shoot, now we will shoot. Quite simply, no Serb could go into
4 Q. And does this report correspond with what you know about the
5 attacks and their deployment in Dub, Karacici, Golubovici and so on?
6 A. Well, I have no reason to doubt the report.
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I would like to tender this,
9 JUDGE KWON: Ms. Gustafson.
10 MS. GUSTAFSON: No objection.
11 JUDGE KWON: We'll receive it.
12 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit D2965, Your Honours.
13 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. Throughout the whole period, Dr. Veselinovic, until you liberated
15 Rogatica, who carried out attacks?
16 A. The attacks were carried out by Muslims from Rogatica. Since we
17 were on the periphery, their objective -- and they strived to expand the
18 territory and join up with the area of Gorazde with some villages of
19 there that we were cutting off.
20 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we look at 65 ter 6968 now,
22 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
23 Q. This is from the 23rd of June, and what it says here is that this
24 is a regular operations report. The enemy continues being most active in
25 the town on the Sjemec-Visegrad road, and it's firing at our positions.
1 And in the sector of Gornja Aleska [phoen], the enemy attacked our forces
2 which were securing the work being done on the power transmission line.
3 Do you remember that, that they knocked down the power transmission line?
4 A. I don't recall that. I don't know the particulars, but I know
5 that specific in Rogatica they torched the transformer station. There
6 was no electricity for a long time, and you could see their machine-gun
7 nests on those photographs, and also you could see when they fired at
8 houses, when they -- the ammunition fell short of their targets. And you
9 also saw some other details, but I don't know about any particulars
10 regarding activities out of town. I know only what I heard while I was
11 working at Sladara during my activities in the Crisis Staff.
12 Q. Thank you.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we admit this?
14 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
15 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit 2966, Your Honours.
16 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation].
17 Q. Just one more question, Dr. Veselinovic. Let's clarify this
18 confusion about when the Serbs had which kind of weapons. After the JNA
19 withdrew, did the Army of Republika Srpska have more weapons than the
20 Serbs had before the JNA withdrew?
21 A. Well, we have to know that the TO unit formed by Rajko Kusic was
22 very quickly placed under the JNA by activities the Crisis Staff, and it
23 became part of the Yugoslav People's Army. And as such, it was in a
24 situation that it had more weaponry and it had a greater amount of
25 weaponry at its disposal, as a unit, part of the force under the command
1 of the General Staff headed by General Ratko Mladic.
2 Q. Thank you. I'm going to read to you what Mr. Ujic said on
3 page 33466. I'm going to read it in English so it could be translated
4 better. Reply, line 21:
5 [In English] "Please, I can't laconically say 'yes,' but just in
6 a few words. I co-ordinated the artillery, as you know, so that the
7 targets could be engaged from which we received fire. Only they were
8 neutralised. That's the extent of my participation."
9 [Interpretation] Do you have any knowledge or do you know if
10 anyone shelled for the purpose of getting rid of the population, of
11 driving the population out as it is suggested in this question?
12 A. No.
13 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Ms. Gustafson.
14 MS. GUSTAFSON: Well, the horse has left the barn, but the
15 witness in his cross-examination said he knew nothing about this attack,
16 and it's completely improper for Dr. Karadzic to read somebody else's
17 evidence to him and ask a question about it in that manner. There was no
18 foundation for it.
19 And just while I'm on my feet, Dr. Karadzic has now pointed to
20 the precise passage that supported the question I put to the witness,
21 which in my question I said that Mr. Ujic had given evidence that he
22 co-ordinated this artillery attack, caused the population to flee, and
23 resulted in the wounding of children. And at transcript page 33466 he --
24 at line 21 and 22, he said he co-ordinated the artillery --
25 JUDGE KWON: But it might have sounded that they -- that witness
1 had agreed that shelling caused the fleeing of the population.
2 MS. GUSTAFSON: Yeah, but in -- then at --
3 JUDGE KWON: Let's move on. I think it's enough.
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Precisely, Your Excellency. I have
5 no further questions.
6 Thank you, Mr. Veselinovic.
7 MS. GUSTAFSON: Sorry, Your Honours, I just have to put this on
8 the record. And then I asked Mr. Ujic:
9 "And those children had been left behind the column of Muslims
10 fleeing those villages; right?"
11 And the answer was: "Yes, yes."
12 I think the question was fair, and that's at line 16 of
13 transcript page 33467.
14 JUDGE KWON: Let's leave it there. Thank you, Ms. Gustafson, and
15 thank you, Mr. Karadzic.
16 Dr. Veselinovic, that concludes your evidence. On behalf of the
17 Chamber, I'd like to thank you for your coming to The Hague to give it.
18 Now you are free to go. And we'll rise all together.
19 We'll have a break for 45 minutes and resume at 1.40.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was my pleasure. Thank you.
21 [The witness withdrew]
22 --- Recess taken at 12.53 p.m.
23 --- On resuming at 1.42 p.m.
24 [The witness entered court]
25 JUDGE KWON: Would the witness take the solemn declaration,
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
3 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
4 WITNESS: MOMIR DEURIC
5 [Witness answered through interpreter]
6 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Mr. Deuric. Please make yourself
8 Before you start giving evidence, Mr. Deuric, I'd like to draw
9 your attention to a particular Rule here at the International Tribunal.
10 Do you hear me in the language you understand, Mr. Deuric?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I do, yes.
12 JUDGE KWON: Under this Rule, Rule 90(E), you may object to
13 answering a question from Mr. Karadzic, the Prosecution, or even from the
14 Judges, if you believe that your answer will incriminate you. When I say
15 "incriminate," I mean that something you say may amount to an admission
16 of your guilt for a criminal offence or could provide evidence that you
17 have committed an offence. However, even if you think your answer will
18 incriminate you and you do not wish to answer the question, the Tribunal
19 has the power to compel you answer the question, but in such a case, the
20 Tribunal will make sure that your testimony compelled in such a way shall
21 not be used as evidence in other case against you for any offence other
22 than for false testimony.
23 Do you understand what I have just told you, sir?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. Yes, I understand.
25 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
1 Yes, Mr. Karadzic.
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you.
3 Examination by Mr. Karadzic:
4 Q. [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Mr. Deuric.
5 A. Good afternoon.
6 Q. Can I just remind you to pause between question and answer,
7 because we want to make sure that everything is correctly recorded in the
8 transcript. If you follow the cursor on the monitor, when it stops after
9 I put my question to you, then you can start your answer.
10 Did you provide a statement to my team?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Thank you.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we look at 1D7231 in e-court,
15 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Mr. Deuric, do you see the statement on the screen in front of
17 you? Is that the statement?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Thank you. Have you read the statement, and did you sign it?
20 A. Yes. I read it and signed it.
21 Q. Thank you.
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we look at the last page,
23 please, so that the witness could identify the signature.
24 MR. KARADZIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Is this your signature, Mr. Deuric?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Thank you. And does the statement accurately reflect what you
3 said? Did you hear me, Mr. Deuric? Is the statement correct? Is what
4 is stated there a reflection of what you said?
5 A. Yes. Yes.
6 Q. If I were to put the same questions to you today that the Defence
7 team put to you when they took the statement, would your answers in
8 essence be the same?
9 A. Yes, they would be the same.
10 Q. Thank you.
11 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] And I would like to tender this
12 statement pursuant to Rule 92 ter.
13 JUDGE KWON: I take it there's no associated exhibits.
14 MR. ROBINSON: That's correct.
15 JUDGE KWON: Any objection, Mr. Zec?
16 MR. ZEC: There is none, Mr. President.
17 JUDGE KWON: We'll admit the statement.
18 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit D2967, Your Honours.
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I'm now going to read the summary
20 of Mr. Deuric's statement in English.
21 [In English] Momir Deuric was a security guard of the reception
22 centre of Susica.
23 He provided security for the depots at Susica which housed
24 equipment for the Territorial Defence. At this time, the composition of
25 the guards was mixed. However, Momir Deuric found that following his
1 annual leave at the end of 1991, a Muslim colleague had been made chief
2 of security despite being far less experienced than Momir Deuric.
3 Up until the early 1990, Momir Deuric considers that there was no
4 particular ethnic intolerance. However, at the beginning of the 1992,
5 when the plan of the Muslims, Croats, and Slovenes to break up Yugoslavia
6 came to light, the Serbs began to mistrust the Muslims. The Serbs were
7 not in favour of this break-up, and when the national parties took
8 charge, the situation started going downhill.
9 Momir Deuric recalls that the Muslim SDA party in particular
10 denigrated the other parties, and at their inaugural meetings there was
11 an enormous outpouring of hatred towards the Serbs. Further, at the
12 inaugural meeting of the SDS, the Muslims organised themselves and threw
13 stones at vehicles and passers-by who were attending the meeting.
14 Momir Deuric is aware that when the war in Croatia began, the Muslims
15 supported the Croats and went to fight on their side. Clashes then
16 between Serbs and Muslims became frequent.
17 During 1991, the Serbs were mostly mobilised to the
18 Territorial Defence units. However, the Muslims did not respond to this
19 call-up. Through mobilisation, many Serbs obtained weapons, whereas the
20 Muslims obtained them mainly via the SDA and bought them for money.
21 In April 1992, Momir Deuric's two Muslim colleagues stopped
22 attending work and therefore the Serbian guards had to organise
23 themselves. At this time, there was already talk of fighting between
24 Muslims and Serbs which caused great panic. People started leaving in
25 droves. The majority of inhabitants had various kinds of weapons, and in
1 the evenings shooting was often heard. He was aware that the Serb
2 representatives in the municipal government in Vlasenica tried in various
3 ways to avoid war with the Muslims. They proposed dividing the territory
4 into two municipalities. The Muslims in authority accepted this
5 decision. However, they immediately began leaving Vlasenica en masse.
6 Momir Deuric recalls a complete mobilisation of the Serbs in
7 Vlasenica was carried out on 21st of April, 1992. At this point, only
8 one depot was full and therefore in May 1992, Serbs who had fled from --
9 fled other surrounding villages were accommodated in the empty depot
10 which was then guarded by the police. Every day Serbs left this depot as
11 accommodation was found for them in the city or elsewhere and soon the
12 depot was empty.
13 After the depot had been emptied, the army took control of it and
14 started bringing Muslims to the depot from neighbouring towns. There
15 were instances where Muslim families went to the depot to spend the night
16 there until transport could be arranged as they did not feel safe in
17 their own home.
18 Momir Deuric was not aware of anyone being killed in the
19 facility. He observed on several occasions that a foreign delegation
20 arrived at the depot accompanied by the police. He later learned that
21 these delegations were mainly from the International Red Cross.
22 On 26th of September, 1992, Momir Deuric heard heavy gunfire
23 early in the morning from the direction of Rogosija village and knew that
24 the Muslims had attacked it. A call was made for people to go and assist
25 in the village as many Serbs were wounded. He responded to this call and
1 when he arrived, he saw that the village had been torched and many people
2 were slaughtered, both soldiers and civilians. No Muslim fighters were
3 found after this attack, as they had withdrawn immediately after
4 committing this attack. Momir Deuric attended the funeral of those who
5 had been killed in Rogosija and was not aware of any officials from Pale
6 attending. A day or two after this funeral, the depot was closed as all
7 the Muslims had been taken for an exchange.
8 Momir Deuric did not hear from anyone that Radovan Karadzic gave
9 any kind of orders to anyone in Vlasenica with regard to the treatment of
11 [Interpretation] This was the summary. I don't have questions
12 for this witness at this point, Your Honours.
13 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Deuric, as you have now noted, your evidence in
14 this case has been admitted in its entirety in writing instead of your
15 oral testimony. Now you'll be cross-examined by the representative of
16 the Office of the Prosecutor.
17 Yes, Mr. Zec.
18 MR. ZEC: Thank you, Mr. President.
19 Cross-examination by Mr. Zec:
20 Q. Good afternoon to you, Mr. Deuric.
21 A. Good afternoon.
22 Q. You told us in your statement that there was a complete
23 mobilisation in Vlasenica on 21st of April, 1992. You were summoned to
24 report to the premises of the Boksit company. Can you tell us who
25 exactly did you go to report? Was it command of the Serb TO in
2 A. Yes. The TO command from Vlasenica. We received summons from
3 the Secretariat for National Defence, and we reported to the Boksit
4 building. And earlier it was agreed that Vlasenica be divided into two
5 municipalities, Serbian one and a Muslim one.
6 Q. This is in your statement. You don't have to repeat. It's okay.
7 I'll just ask you specific questions.
8 A. Okay.
9 Q. And the TO assigned you to provide security to the TO facilities
10 at Susica together with Slobodan Jovic and others, didn't they?
11 A. Yes, yes.
12 Q. You told us in paragraph 18 that after the army took control of
13 Susica, they started bringing Muslims, but you didn't provide any date.
14 This Chamber has heard evidence that the VRS established camp for
15 prisoners at Susica on 31st May 1992. So this is the date when the army
16 took over Susica, isn't it?
17 A. First of all, Serb families that had fled Gorazde, Olovo, and
18 Kladanj came to the facility in Susica. They spent two or three nights
19 there. The municipal authorities found --
20 Q. This is again in your statement. I'm just trying to find out the
21 date. Is it 31st May 1992? If you remember. If you don't remember,
22 it's okay. When the army took over Susica. We can move on. That's no
24 A. First the police handled the security in Susica, and then I think
25 in late May, it was the army that took over that job from the police.
1 Q. Thank you.
2 MR. ZEC: And, Your Honours, this is in P03240.
3 Q. You told us, Mr. Deuric, that among the buildings at Susica,
4 there was the old TO building that was used to store the TO equipment.
5 There was the new TO building that you say was built in 1991 and there
6 was the small guardhouse. This is correct, isn't it?
7 A. Yes, it is.
8 Q. These buildings were about 20 metres apart. They were surrounded
9 by barbed wire fence and there were trenches around it. That's correct,
10 isn't it?
11 A. Yes, there was barbed wire, but it had been torn two or three
12 years prior. It was very old wire.
13 Q. Let's have a look at some photos of Susica.
14 MR. ZEC: Can we have in e-court 65 ter 24591.
15 Q. Mr. Deuric, in this photo we see Susica camp from the air. The
16 big frame on this photo is the building that you say was built in 1991.
17 Next to it is the old TO building and opposite to these two is the small
18 guardhouse. That's correct, isn't it?
19 A. Yes.
20 MR. ZEC: Can we have the next page.
21 Q. This is another view of Susica camp from the air. And here we
22 can see other buildings and houses around Susica camp and there's the
23 Vlasenica town in the background, isn't it?
24 A. Yes.
25 MR. ZEC: Can we have the next page.
1 Q. This shows the entrance to the Susica camp. To our right is the
2 old TO building. Next to it is the new -- next to it is the new TO
3 building, and the white guardhouse is the opposite side of the new
5 A. Yes.
6 MR. ZEC: Next page, please.
7 Q. This photo was taken in 1996, whereas the previous photos, they
8 were from 2002. This photo depicts the area behind the guardhouse;
10 A. Yes.
11 MR. ZEC: Next page, please.
12 Q. This is area in front of the new building, and here we can see an
13 electric pole in the shape of the letter A. Can you confirm this pole
14 was there in 1996 and before?
15 A. Yes, it was.
16 MR. ZEC: Can we have the next page.
17 Q. And this again we see Susica camp from the air, and this pole is
18 in the middle. That's correct, isn't it? Can you confirm that this is
19 Susica camp?
20 A. Yes, I can.
21 MR. ZEC: Your Honours, I will tender these photos.
22 JUDGE KWON: Yes, we will receive it.
23 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P6130, Your Honours.
24 MR. ZEC:
25 Q. You told us in your statement that you observed several times
1 from your guardhouse that a foreign delegation visited Susica. When you
2 say, Mr. Deuric, in your statement "guardhouse," you are referring to the
3 guardhouse that we saw on the photos. That's correct, isn't it?
4 A. No. From the warehouse where I worked there was materiel and
5 equipment of the TO or of its Municipal Staff. I was there most of the
6 time storing and sorting equipment which would be strewn about every time
7 soldiers came by. On occasion, I could observe from the warehouse that a
8 delegation has arrived. Later on, people told me they were from the
9 International Red Cross.
10 Q. I was referring what you said in your statement. Now you were
11 saying you were in this old TO building that we also saw on the photos.
12 That's correct, isn't it?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Would the prisoners be present at Susica while these delegations
15 were coming?
16 A. Yes, they were.
17 Q. How much -- how many of them would be there?
18 A. The captured people?
19 Q. Yes.
20 A. Well, it depended. There were more when buses arrived to take
21 them to be exchanged. I know that a group went to Batkovic. I think
22 there were two buses that went there. Later there were fewer. The
23 International Red Cross mission visited prior to their being sent for an
24 exchange and afterwards too.
25 Q. Let's have a look at the report prepared by the CSC mission that
1 visited Susica on 2nd September 1992.
2 MR. ZEC: Can we have P03228.
3 Q. Second paragraph of the report refers to two sheds, one of which
4 was larger and was used to hold detainees. The second shed, they say,
5 was smaller and was used to store boxes of small arms, old shoes, and
6 other military equipment. Empty boxes were piled outside the small shed,
7 they say. Paragraphs after refer to prisoners and general conditions at
9 Do you remember this visit of 2nd September 1992, Mr. Deuric?
10 A. No, I don't. I wasn't present at that time. As for the shack
11 that was there, we only --
12 Q. We can move on. According to this report, the delegation was
13 able to see about 40 prisoners. At the end of the third paragraph, they
14 say they were not confident that they saw all of the prisoners. Do you
15 know, Mr. Deuric, where other prisoners were during this visit?
16 A. I know that sometimes in the morning, although not every day,
17 people reported for work, people such as plumbers, electricians.
18 Whenever something needed to be done. For the most part they went to
19 work in the health clinic when things needed to be fixed such as
20 plumbing, and that is why they may not have been present. They weren't
21 there all day long at Susica.
22 Q. Now I would like to show you a few photos that this delegation
23 was able at to take.
24 MR. ZEC: Can we have 65 ter 26 -- 24615. Next page, please.
25 Q. This is the entrance to the Susica camp. We see the gate, the
1 old TO building that -- with boxes piled in front of it. And there is a
2 new -- the new building. That's correct, isn't it?
3 A. Yes.
4 MR. ZEC: Can we have next page.
5 Q. This photo shows inside of the new TO building. That's correct,
6 isn't it?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. The person that looks towards camera was Hasan Paric [phoen],
9 prisoner at Susica. Do you recognise him?
10 A. I'm not sure.
11 MR. ZEC: Can we have next page.
12 Q. This shows inside of the old TO building described in the report
13 that you say you were guarding. That's correct, isn't it?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. So you were guarding this without knowing what was happening
16 outside. Is that your evidence, Mr. Deuric?
17 A. This is not the old building.
18 Q. That's what they say in the report.
19 MR. ZEC: Your Honours, I would tender these photos.
20 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
21 THE REGISTRAR: Exhibit P6131, Your Honours.
22 MR. ZEC:
23 Q. Mr. Deuric, you say in paragraph 19 that you were not aware of
24 anyone being killed at Susica. In fact, what was happening at Susica
25 were murders, beatings, torture, and rapes. This is what was taking
1 place, Mr. Deuric, isn't it?
2 A. Let me tell you this: I wasn't at Susica every day. I have
3 children and a wife, and they were refugees in Serbia. When I was at
4 Susica, no one was killed in my presence. I wasn't able to hear or see
5 it. I heard from my comrades that two people died, Durmo Handzic and
6 Zivzic [phoen]. I don't remember his first name. I do remember that
7 doctors came and confirmed that they died of heart attack. That's what I
8 know positively.
9 Q. Dragan Nikolic pled guilty to crimes in Susica, and you -- you
10 saw him torturing and nearly killing a prisoner in Susica, isn't it?
11 A. I didn't see it.
12 Q. We have a witness statement of a Muslim prisoner who was tortured
13 by Nikolic. That person, a colleague of yours, with whom you had spent
14 years before the war guarding this same location, stated that when you
15 entered the new building while Dragan Nikolic was pushing gun to his
16 throat, Nikolic stopped, and he thinks that his life was saved. Do you
17 remember this, Mr. Deuric?
18 A. No.
19 MR. ZEC: Can we have 65 ter 24589, and not to be broadcast. You
20 will see the first page of the statement and we need page 7. Can we have
21 page 7? Second-last paragraph in English and sixth last in B/C/S.
22 Q. You can read it for yourself, Mr. Deuric. The reality is,
23 Mr. Deuric, you knew that Dragan Nikolic tortured prisoners, and that was
24 committed by other guards as well, but you're simply not willing to tell
25 that to this Court, isn't it? You see your name there. It's like sixth
1 paragraph from the bottom. You read it?
2 After the same page this witness refers to Veljko Basic and
3 Slobodan Pajic, who, according to this witness, took a bus load of women
4 and children out of Susica, and they were never returned. You told us
5 about Veljko Basic in your statement. Slobodan Pajic was a VRS
6 officer --
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Slobodan Pajic was a VRS officer who was present at Susica, isn't
10 A. Yes. Veljko Basic was the camp warden. Dragan Nikolic --
11 Q. Did you report to Slobodan Pajic?
12 A. -- was trying to be imposing. He had a finger in every pie. I
13 was nobody. I couldn't report.
14 Q. Another witness, Mr. Deuric, saw you outside the new building
15 among Dragan Nikolic, Radenko Kovacevic, Goran Viskovic and
16 Predrag Bastah. You were making lists of new prisoners and those who
17 were taken out for forced labour and exchange. Do you remember this?
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we please establish first
19 whether the witness actually managed to read the paragraph where his name
20 can be found. I don't think we were able to indicate to him clearly
21 where it was.
22 JUDGE KWON: I think that's fair enough. Mr. Robinson, did you
23 have an observation?
24 MR. ROBINSON: No, that was my exact point, that the witness
25 never had the opportunity to comment on the question that was put to him
1 about that individual whose name appears in the statement.
2 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
3 MR. ZEC: I thought it takes time for the witness to read and I
4 wasn't sure whether he's reading. I moved on, but we can certainly do
5 that. Can we go up the page. Perhaps down.
6 Q. So this is the big paragraph in this statement when this
7 colleague of yours said that Nikolic was pushing gun to his throat and
8 you entered the big, new building. Do you see that, Mr. Deuric?
9 A. I see it.
10 Q. So do you remember this?
11 A. I didn't see him put his rifle into his mouth, but I met Jenki on
12 his way out of the warehouse.
13 Q. So you were in the new building --
14 A. Perhaps he thought he saw me and then he went back.
15 Q. And this is nothing of this is in your statement, Mr. Deuric.
16 You're telling us that now.
17 A. You want me to recall it after 20 years?
18 Q. As I mentioned to you, another witness saw you making list of
19 prisoners at Susica. Do you remember doing that?
20 A. Who made the list? No. I never did that.
21 MR. ZEC: Can we have 65 ter 24590.
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Perhaps it should not be broadcast,
23 and we should establish whether the man -- the witness actually
24 recognises who the person giving this statement is that he referred to as
25 a friend.
1 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: There was an overlap and
2 we did not hear the witness.
3 JUDGE KWON: Before I clarify with the witness, what was the
4 reason why we should not broadcast the previous document?
5 MR. ZEC: Simply out of abundance of caution with Mr. --
6 Mr. President. Simply we don't have any information about this witness.
7 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Deuric, after Mr. Karadzic referred to "a
8 friend," what did you say? We didn't hear that because it was not
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know which friend.
11 JUDGE KWON: Very well. Thank you.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The one who --
13 JUDGE KWON: Let's proceed.
14 MR. ZEC: Can we blow up the bottom of this page.
15 Q. Do you see now your name? It says Momir -- Deuric Momir, known
16 as Momo, Kovacevic Radenko, Viskovic Goran, Predrag Bastah. And after
18 A. I see it.
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I'm afraid we need to show the
20 witness the first statement first and then the second so that he would
21 know who provided that statement. The witness didn't see who the person
22 is that is being referred to as friend and now he doesn't seem to know
23 who it is who actually entered.
24 MR. ZEC: I said several times. This is another witness from the
25 previous, and it was on the screen.
1 JUDGE KWON: Shall we show the top part of the statement or
2 official record.
3 MR. ZEC:
4 Q. Do you see the name, very first line in this paragraph?
5 JUDGE KWON: What was your question, Mr. Zec?
6 MR. ZEC:
7 Q. Mr. Deuric, after reading this statement, can you confirm that
8 you were making lists of prisoners at Susica?
9 A. No.
10 Q. You know that Predrag Bastah and Goran Viskovic were convicted
11 before the Court of BiH for crimes committed at Vlasenica and Susica, do
13 A. I know that.
14 MR. ZEC: Can we have 65 ter 24609.
15 Q. In front of you, Mr. Deuric, there will be the verdict of the
16 Court of BiH against the accused Predrag Bastah and Goran Viskovic. This
17 verdict was confirmed by the Appeals Chamber before the Court of BiH on
18 22nd February 2011. Veljko Basic was included in this trial and, due to
19 his health, his case was separated. According to this verdict,
20 Predrag Bastah was member of reserve police in Vlasenica and
21 Goran Viskovic was member of the VRS. The court has found that the
22 accused were guilty for a number of crimes including those committed in
23 Susica in June and July 1992. They were found guilty for taking Susica
24 prisoners away, many of whom are still missing. Goran Viskovic was also
25 found guilty for taking prisoners away to perform forced labour and for
1 the rape of one of the female prisoners. According to the verdict, the
2 Susica guards were present while these crimes were taking place.
3 Mr. Deuric, the reality is that the members of the VRS, police
4 and guards committed numerous crimes against the Susica prisoners, isn't
6 A. It is so. But all sorts of stories went around. The rumour had
7 it that --
8 Q. Mr. Deuric, I'm referring what the judgement says. Can you
9 confirm that? And you were there. You can confirm that?
10 MR. ZEC: Your Honours, I tender this verdict.
11 JUDGE KWON: If you asked a question, let's hear him out.
12 Do you confirm, Mr. Deuric, that --
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. I heard of murders, but I
14 wasn't present. Let me tell you something else. People said that
15 certain people were killed, and then a month later, I would see the
16 person in question alive. People said that he or she tried to escape and
17 was killed, and later on that person reappeared in the camp.
18 Now, what sort of truth is that, and how should I believe it,
19 because I could hear people talking.
20 MR. ZEC:
21 Q. I'm simply asking you what you saw.
22 MR. ZEC: Your Honours, I would tender --
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I only say what I saw.
24 JUDGE KWON: Yes. Mr. Robinson.
25 MR. ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. President. We don't have any objection
1 to pages 1 through 12 of that document being admitted.
2 JUDGE KWON: Yes, we'll admit it.
3 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P6132, Your Honours.
4 MR. ZEC:
5 Q. Mr. Deuric, I would like to ask you about the conversation that
6 you claim you had with Dragan Nikolic on the day of the funeral. You
7 know that Dragan Nikolic pled guilty before this Tribunal for crimes
8 committed at Susica. Do you know that? At --
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. At his sentencing hearing, Witness Habiba Hadzic testified that
11 she had lost her two sons at Susica, Enes and Bernes Hadzic. During her
12 testimony she asked Dragan to tell her where her two sons were buried so
13 at least she can find and bury them with dignity. This is at transcript
14 page 247 of the Nikolic trial. Dragan Nikolic spoke shortly after her
15 plea. He said that Enes and Bernes were taken from Susica on
16 30th September in a group of 40 other prisoners to Debelo Brdo. They
17 were liquidated in that area so they could have been buried there. This
18 is at transcript page 256 and 257.
19 Mr. Deuric, the remaining prisoners of Susica were killed on
20 30th September 1992, after which the camp was closed. That's correct,
21 isn't it?
22 A. At the funeral when I was there on the 29th of September, two
23 nephews and the son of two relatives were killed. Dragan Nikolic caught
24 up with me when I was going home after the funeral. He says there's no
25 one left at Susica. Everybody had been taken for an exchange. I did not
1 answer anything, nor did I go back to Susica on the 26th of September.
2 When that thing happened I went to the front line, and until the 29th, I
3 did not even know that my nephews and relatives had been killed. And
4 then I asked for a vehicle to go to the funeral, and I was late for the
5 funeral. It was already underway.
6 Now, what happened with those people who were left in Susica, I
7 don't know. I did not ask him. I was in mourning. I wasn't thinking of
8 anything else.
9 Q. So I take it you didn't make any further inquiries after that.
10 You didn't go to Susica. You went to Cerska?
11 A. I went to Susica towards the end of 1994 from the front line,
12 again to guard the TO building.
13 Q. And this is in your statement, yes.
14 MR. ZEC: Can we have P40 -- P04856, e-court page 29. And at
15 this page you will be able to see victims from Vlasenica, most of them
16 Susica victims. In the middle of the page there are the names of
17 Ms. Hadzic's sons. Enes was found in gravesite at Pelemis in 2004.
18 Bernes is still missing. In this list there are names of other Susica
19 prisoners, some of whom were found in a grave site at Ogradica in 2003.
20 Do you know, Mr. Deuric, that Susica prisoners were buried at
21 these locations after they were killed?
22 A. No. No, I was not aware of that.
23 Q. Do you perhaps know of any other location where Susica prisoners
24 were buried?
25 A. I can't say anything that I don't know. I just don't know.
1 Q. That's fine. You told us that you had participated in the VRS
2 combat operations at Cerska and Kravica in March 1993. You say that a
3 group of Muslim fighters was stationed at mountain Udrc. You also --
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Did you also -- did you also know that the Muslim civilians from
6 the enclaves passed over this area on their way towards Tuzla? Did you
7 know that?
8 A. Yes. From Cerska they were on their way to Kladanj, as far as I
9 know. And from Kladanj to Cerska and Srebrenica.
10 Q. And, in fact, the VRS units attacked and shelled these Muslim
11 columns, civilians, who were passing over Udrc, didn't they?
12 A. Those who got out of Udrc, the Muslims, they attacked people from
13 Krajina, and two people -- 12 people from Krajina were killed, and it is
14 said that two Muslims were in that Krajina Brigade and that they got
15 killed, too, and they were butchered, mutilated.
16 Q. This is in your statement.
17 MR. ZEC: Can we have P04252, which is a combat report of
18 2nd March 1993, in which the command of the Zvornik Brigade informs the
19 Drina Corps command that around 8 hours 30 minutes, columns of civilians
20 and soldiers with pack animals were noticed from Udrc to -- and Rasevo
21 towards Konjevic Polje. The columns were hit with every available
22 weapon. This is in the first paragraph.
23 Q. The reality is, Mr. Deuric, that the VRS shelled and attacked the
24 columns of civilian -- Muslim civilians, isn't it?
25 A. I did not understand. Which year was that?
1 Q. This is Udrc, Udrc mountain that you say --
2 A. 1993?
3 Q. March 1993. Correct.
4 A. I don't know about that. I was there in Cerska at the time when
5 those men from the Krajina Brigade were killed. Now, what was going on
6 over there, I don't know.
7 Q. And then you say you were fighting in Kravica, and your task at
8 Kravica was to capture Kravica. That's correct?
9 A. When we crossed over there, there were no Muslims there. Kravica
10 was held there until Christmas. We stayed there for seven or ten days in
11 a place called Siljkovici, overlooking Kravica. That's when we found out
12 that there's nothing left at Kravica. Everything was destroyed or had
13 burned. We were looking for the church from the hilltop, looking to see
14 if the church was destroyed too. And then we returned on the 21st of
15 March because we got orders not to continue towards Srebrenica. We
16 returned to Vlasenica and I was assigned to the Kladanj theatre, place
17 called Cestane [phoen] --
18 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Zec, I wonder if you could conclude very soon.
19 In terms of planning for the day, how much longer do you need?
20 MR. ZEC: I will have one document to show the witness and I'll
22 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
23 MR. ZEC:
24 Q. And while you were in Kravica, the VRS soldiers that you
25 co-ordinated your activities, among them there was this battalion from
1 the 1st Krajina Corps and there was special unit commanded by Mauzer.
2 That's correct?
3 A. I think so. I know only for sure about the people from the
4 Krajina Corps. As for Mauzer, some people said that there was also his
5 unit there, but I was not anywhere in the vicinity. I'm not sure.
6 MR. ZEC: And can we have 65 ter 09320.
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] While we're waiting, may I be of
8 assistance with the transcript. On page 95, line 14, the witness did not
9 say they were returning from Srebrenica from Kladanj, only to Cerska.
10 And on page 96, line 18, and the witness said luckily -- or it's almost a
11 miracle the church was not destroyed.
12 THE INTERPRETER: We could not catch what the witness said.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] We were just looking from a
14 distance of a kilometre or two through the woods. We did not come close
15 to see the church well enough, but all the other buildings had burnt
17 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Please proceed.
18 MR. ZEC:
19 Q. Mr. Deuric, on the screen it's an order issued by the Drina Corps
20 command pursuant to the military operation called Udar. Under 3 -- 2 --
21 5.3, it provides that the Bratunac Light Infantry Brigade, a battalion of
22 the 1st KK - if we can have 5.3, Mr. Registrar - and the
23 3rd Infantry Battalion were to attack along the villages of Banovici,
24 Gornja Bacici and Kravica in order to crush the enemy and capture
25 Kravica. Also to carry out operations in co-ordination with the special
1 operations brigade commanded by Mauzer. You told us that Kravica was the
2 area where you were deployed. This is correct, isn't it?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. You -- you were with the 3rd Infantry Battalion from Vlasenica
5 fighting along with the soldiers from the 1st Krajina Corps. That's also
6 what you already told us. That's correct, isn't it?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Commander Mauzer from this order is Ljubisa Savic, also known as
9 Mauzer from Bijeljina. That's correct, isn't it?
10 A. Yes.
11 MR. ZEC: Your Honours, I would offer this document into
13 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
14 MR. ROBINSON: No objection.
15 JUDGE KWON: Yes. We will receive it.
16 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit P6133, Your Honour.
17 MR. ZEC: I conclude my examination. Thank you.
18 Thank you, Mr. Deuric.
19 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Can you conclude in five minutes?
20 THE ACCUSED: Yes.
21 JUDGE KWON: Yes, please proceed.
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I'm not sure how this line 6 was
23 interpreted to the witness. It says here you were in the 3rd
24 Infantry Battalion from Vlasenica fighting along with the soldiers from
25 the 1st Krajina Corps. Whereas the witness got interpretation that he
1 was in the 1st Battalion, so I'm afraid confusion may arise.
2 Re-examination by Mr. Karadzic:
3 Q. [Interpretation] Could you tell us, Mr. Deuric, in which
4 battalion, which unit were you?
5 A. I was in the Vlasenica battalion.
6 Q. Thank you. Was Mauzer in contact with your unit?
7 A. No, he was not. I don't even know whether he was there at the
9 Q. Thank you. Whose settlement is Kravica? Who lives there, in the
10 majority of almost 100 per cent?
11 A. One hundred per cent Serbs, I believe.
12 Q. Thank you. At Udrc were there civilians based there? Which
13 Muslims were at Udrc?
14 A. A group came down from Udrc to the first village next door,
15 Babici, and that's where the members of the 1st Krajina Corps were, and
16 they killed them. And we got down along the whole length of Cerska. We
17 didn't find anyone, no women, no children, no fighting men, no one. They
18 were in hiding in the woods, and they committed this massacre in Udrc.
19 Q. Did you say they captured and killed them there?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Captured was not recorded. So they took them captive, and then
22 massacred them.
23 A. Yes, including those two Muslims who were members of the
24 Krajina Brigade. They butchered them, really.
25 Q. Just one more question. Wire was mentioned around the TO depot,
1 barbed wire. When was it put up and for what reason?
2 A. The barbed wire fence was put up on -- in 1976 when we came from
3 Piskavica to Susica. We took it from the Elastik factory, and we took
4 this used wire to make the fence.
5 Q. Thank you, Mr. Deuric. I have no more questions.
6 A. I would like to add something I forgot to say before. When
7 Rogosija was attacked, it was a massacre. My elder nephew was
8 unrecognisable, unidentifiable. He was burned, genitals were cut off.
9 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Deuric.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This man Jankovic --
11 JUDGE KWON: I think that's sufficient. We should stop here
12 today, and that concludes your evidence.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
14 JUDGE KWON: On behalf of the Chamber, I thank you for your
15 coming to The Hague to give it. Now you're free to go.
16 We will rise all together and continue tomorrow morning at 9.00.
17 The hearing is adjourned.
18 [The witness withdrew]
19 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 2.48 p.m.,
20 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 19th day
21 of February, 2013, at 9.00 a.m.