Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 19985

1 Thursday, 1 June 2000

2 [Open session]

3 [The accused entered court]

4 [The witness entered court]

5 --- Upon commencing at 9.34 a.m.

6 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] I don't

7 think I need to remind you what Judge Richard May was

8 already mentioned, who, for professional reasons which

9 have to do with the work of the Tribunal, will not be

10 here today. My colleague, Judge Robinson, and myself

11 will be sitting today.

12 I think there are no objections, so

13 Ms. Somers, you can proceed.

14 MS. SOMERS: There was no English

15 translation, Your Honour.

16 JUDGE BENNOUNA: There was no English?

17 THE REGISTRAR: Is there a problem with the

18 interpreters in the English booth?

19 THE INTERPRETER: No. One, two, three. I

20 think the channels got mixed up. Sorry.

21 JUDGE BENNOUNA: Okay. Ms. Somers, please.

22 MS. SOMERS: Thank you, Your Honours. Of

23 course, just for the record, there's absolutely no

24 objection.

25 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Are you now

Page 19986

1 getting the interpretation into English?

2 MS. SOMERS: Yes.

3 JUDGE BENNOUNA: Thank you. You can

4 proceed.

5 MS. SOMERS: Thank you, Your Honour.


7 [Witness answered through interpreter]

8 Cross-examined by Ms. Somers: [Cont'd]

9 Q. Mr. Bilic, yesterday we left off with my

10 indicating that I would, as per plan, work backward a

11 little bit from 1993 to the events in 1992.

12 I would like to ask you a little bit, though,

13 if you can tell me, about your role, as you had

14 indicated, as a substitute for the priest. What were

15 the circumstances under which you had to assume the

16 role of, as it were, substitute priest for the Serbian

17 Orthodox community?

18 A. The priest who worked in Busovaca had

19 problems because he had to service two parishes. He

20 was also attacked in Zenica so he left that area. He

21 escaped to Serbia where he was born, and he continued

22 to work there. The priest who worked in Zenica

23 authorised me to exercise the duties of a priest

24 there.

25 Q. What duties did you, in fact, exercise? Were

Page 19987

1 they religious duties or communal duties in relation to

2 the members of the Serb community and, let's say, the

3 central government, or what?

4 A. These were only religious duties.

5 Q. The Serbian Orthodox Church was a focal

6 point, was it not, of the community, the Serbian

7 community?

8 A. The premises of -- the facilities of the

9 Serbian Orthodox Church were only used by the Dobrotvor

10 organisation.

11 Q. Which had a function of distribution of

12 humanitarian aid, as you indicated yesterday; that is

13 correct?.

14 A. Yes, this is where the distribution of

15 humanitarian aid was done.

16 Q. Which, to a great measure, depended on the

17 relationships between the conflicting parties and the

18 International Community; is that correct?

19 A. We didn't feel that because it had been --

20 these things were organised. We had no conflicts with

21 either side. We received our rations regularly.

22 Q. Yes. The receipt of those rations, however,

23 depended on their getting through, which was -- the

24 getting through aspect is what I'm trying to

25 emphasise. That depended on the International

Page 19988

1 Community, did it not, the ability to pass by roads and

2 go from territory to territory. Is that correct?

3 A. Yes, of course.

4 Q. I would like to ask a little bit about the

5 relationships between and among the three ethnic

6 groups, the Muslims, the Croats, and the Serbs, up to

7 mid-1992, let's say up to about the 10th of May, 1992.

8 The first part of the question is directed

9 toward how the war that was going on between Serbia and

10 Croatia affected the communities, and then if you could

11 maybe move into how the war which then moved into the

12 Mostar area between the Serbs and the non-Serb

13 residents of Mostar affected the relationships. Please

14 tell us a bit about that.

15 A. I have nothing to say about that. I never

16 engaged in politics and I wasn't involved in any of

17 that.

18 MR. SAYERS: The question involves Mostar. I

19 believe the city of Mostar, Your Honour, was not

20 addressed at --

21 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Could you

22 please repeat that because we were not getting the

23 translation.

24 MR. SAYERS: Sorry. I was a little bit late

25 leaping to my feet. It appears that this question

Page 19989

1 addresses circumstances in Mostar, and that's something

2 that certainly was not covered at any point, even

3 inferentially, in direct examination and therefore is

4 completely outside the scope of the direct examination,

5 and I objected for that reason. It's also irrelevant.

6 MS. SOMERS: May I respond, Your Honours?

7 Will the Court give me permission to respond as to why

8 I'm asking this question?

9 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Yes,

10 Ms. Somers.

11 MS. SOMERS: Thank you.

12 Your Honour, all the relationships, as we

13 have consistently tried to show, between and among

14 ethnic groups are not dependent solely on what is

15 occurring simply in Central Bosnia. This indictment is

16 premised upon the concept of widespread and

17 systematic. The relationships which are described and

18 the activities which are described in the case in

19 chief --

20 JUDGE BENNOUNA: Could you move on rather

21 rapidly. You have just asked a question which is very

22 long.

23 MS. SOMERS: There was no English, Your

24 Honour.

25 JUDGE BENNOUNA: No English? Okay. I'll try

Page 19990

1 to speak in English at this time.

2 Can you please ask a precise question,

3 because your question was very long. About the ethnic

4 relationships, I think there were two parts. Ask your

5 two questions.

6 MS. SOMERS: Yes, I'll break them down, Your

7 Honour.

8 Q. Mr. Bilic, as you indicated, you were a small

9 number of persons in Busovaca municipality, relatively

10 speaking. Can you talk about the relationships that

11 may or may not have changed between and among the

12 groups as a result of the war between Serbia and

13 Croatia from 1991. I do not ask you necessarily as a

14 political person; I ask you, as you called yourself in

15 your summary, as a private person. How were the

16 relationships affected, please?

17 A. As a politician, I cannot tell you, because I

18 was not into politics and I don't know. And as for the

19 relations, they did not change much in that part.

20 Q. Did the Serb community feel that it had to be

21 more cautious because it belonged to a group which was,

22 certainly technically, of the same nationality as what

23 has been described as the aggressor? Did that cause,

24 let's say, hesitation among the members of the Serb

25 community?

Page 19991

1 A. I did not see any of that.

2 Q. The second part of my question concerned the

3 relationships that may or may not have been affected by

4 the moving of the conflict into Bosnia, where troops

5 backed by the JNA began attacks on non-Serb communities

6 in Mostar, on the territory of the same country in

7 which you were living. Did that make any difference or

8 cause any extra concern among those in the Serb

9 communities -- community, excuse me.

10 A. In Busovaca, where we were living, we did not

11 feel any change. Nobody harassed us to begin to feel

12 ill at ease, out of place there.

13 Q. You were aware --

14 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Ms. Somers.

15 Mr. Bilic, the question that was asked of you

16 was the following: Did you yourself at some point feel

17 perhaps some hostility or suspicion or mistrust between

18 the ethnic groups?

19 A. I did not feel any of that.


21 Q. Mr. Bilic, I'm going to ask you just to look

22 at something and ask for your reaction to it and how it

23 may have affected your community.

24 MS. SOMERS: If I could ask for Z46.2,

25 please.

Page 19992

1 MR. SAYERS: Once again, Your Honour, the

2 same objection under Rule 90(h). I think the Rule is

3 absolutely clear. The cross-examination shall be

4 limited to the subject matter of the direct examination

5 or matters affecting credibility. But of course, the

6 Trial Chamber has discretion to permit inquiry into

7 additional matters, although it has to be conducted as

8 if on direct examination. But the point is this: It

9 is completely beyond the scope of anything that we

10 covered with the witness on direct examination, and

11 completely irrelevant.

12 MS. SOMERS: May I respond, Your Honour?

13 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Ms. Somers,

14 I think that the Rule has very well been stated.

15 Yesterday it was clearly spelled out by the President,

16 and you were here, which is that we will maintain -- we

17 will stick to what has been said in direct examination,

18 apart from, obviously, the questions that have to deal

19 with credibility. But I do not see in which way this

20 letter is linked to what we -- the issue we're dealing

21 with here.

22 MS. SOMERS: Your Honour, if I may -- I'm

23 sorry. I beg your pardon.

24 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Yes, please

25 go on.

Page 19993

1 MS. SOMERS: I think this is a very important

2 point, and I want to indicate to the Court that I will

3 tie this in. One of the fundamental issues in this

4 case is what was going on between the Serbs and the

5 Croats. It is an essential issue that must be

6 documented to the Court, as well as through live

7 testimony.

8 The fact that a witness was not political

9 does not mean, of course, that he or his community is

10 not affected by the political things happening around

11 him. In fact, the statements that were given on direct

12 examination suggest a willful blindness to circumstances

13 that are obvious, and I must bring this to the Court's

14 attention about what was happening, that any Serb

15 community that was concerned, rightfully, about its own

16 relationships should have been aware of. And the

17 points that are in the next -- I have about seven

18 documents, and no more, I think are critical at this

19 point.

20 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Ms. Somers,

21 I think that these questions -- we did have other

22 opportunities to deal with them in this Trial Chamber.

23 I think that you should now go on to a different

24 question. I really cannot see the relation with this

25 witness. You asked him questions about inter-ethnic

Page 19994

1 relations. He said that nothing happened. So the

2 Trial Chamber will draw the consequences from that, and

3 please proceed with another line of questioning. Thank

4 you.

5 MS. SOMERS: All right. I will reserve some

6 of these critical documents for next week's witnesses.

7 Thank you. And perhaps Mr. Nice will be able to avail

8 himself of them.

9 Q. I would like to ask you if you had become

10 aware, as a member of the Serb community, about certain

11 changes occurring between the political leadership, not

12 yourself, of the Serbs generally in Bosnia and the

13 political leadership of the Croats in Bosnia. Did you

14 know about those changes in 1992?

15 A. Whatever changes there were, I was aware of

16 some of them, but I did not engage in politics and I

17 didn't go into that area. All we wanted was to protect

18 ourselves, to survive, and we did not want to meddle

19 into any political processes or political events; we

20 just wanted to survive in that area.

21 Q. I see. Then you are suggesting that you were

22 unaware of a ceasefire agreement that was signed

23 between Radovan Karadzic and Mate Boban at the very end

24 of April, approximately 27 April 1992, in Graz,

25 Austria, which was announced publicly by all means of

Page 19995

1 communication -- radio, print media, other electronic

2 media -- on 6 May 1992. Are you saying that?

3 MR. SAYERS: Same objection, Your Honour.

4 Once again, that was not covered in direct

5 examination.

6 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Mr. Sayers,

7 I believe you have to stop interrupting us. We have

8 other concerns. Ms. Somers is verifying the

9 credibility of the witness by this question, and she is

10 fully entitled to ask you, because she's asking -- she

11 should be allowed to ask the question. It is simply a

12 factor of adjudicated facts and so she's completely in

13 her right to ask the question.

14 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Mr. Bilic,

15 would you please answer the question?

16 A. I have already stated, and I can repeat it a

17 hundred times: I did not engage in politics and I

18 didn't hear about it. I could have heard about it, but

19 I wasn't engaging in those things. I just wasn't

20 involved.

21 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Ms. Somers,

22 I think that you should now change the subject. We

23 have come to the end of this particular issue.

24 MS. SOMERS: Very well. Thank you, Your

25 Honour.

Page 19996

1 Q. I would like to ask you a little bit about

2 your initial comments on the changes that took place in

3 Busovaca after what you called a supposed change in

4 government, but which many other witnesses have called

5 a putsch or a coup. Can I ask you, please, when after

6 the 10th of May 1992 did you first go back into the

7 town of Busovaca from your home near Kaonik?

8 A. I don't know the exact date, but I would go

9 there occasionally. I said that I did go to Busovaca

10 occasionally. But I did not write down the exact dates

11 when I went there or when I came back.

12 Q. When did you -- did you have to continue your

13 work with Dobrotvor to keep humanitarian aid collected

14 and distributed during the time or shortly after the

15 change in the government?

16 A. Yes. The food was distributed once or twice

17 a month, and that's when I went to town. And as far as

18 the distribution of food was concerned, there were no

19 changes; that is, the food was distributed and it went

20 on being distributed.

21 Q. But it was kept in the church, is that

22 correct, in the centre of the town?

23 A. The church is not in the centre of town; it

24 is at the outskirts.

25 Q. Within the municipality, within the town of

Page 19997

1 Busovaca, though? When you say "outskirts," it's still

2 town of Busovaca as opposed to your hamlet or somewhere

3 on the road to your hamlet; is that correct?

4 A. At the very entrance to town.

5 Q. All right. Now, you indicated that you were

6 terribly concerned about a crime problem. Who was

7 protecting the stores of food? Who would check up to

8 make sure there was no pillaging of your supplies? Did

9 you have to do that?

10 A. No, because the food was in the central

11 warehouse. The central warehouse had security. The

12 UNPROFOR provided it. And then UNPROFOR would notify

13 us, we would come and pick up the food that same day.

14 Q. Do you recall, between the 10th of May and

15 the 22nd of May, going into the town of Busovaca for

16 any purpose?

17 A. I don't recall.

18 Q. The Serb police officers who you said did not

19 change their positions after the change of government,

20 can you please give us their names?

21 A. Yes. One of them still lives in Busovaca.

22 He is retired. His name is Milenko Hercegovac.

23 Q. And was he in Busovaca during the entire

24 period of the conflict?

25 A. Yes, he was.

Page 19998

1 Q. Now, do you know whether or not he had a

2 weapon which he took home?

3 A. I don't know about that.

4 Q. Did you notice when you got back into the

5 town of Busovaca after the 10th of May, 1992, that a

6 Croat flag was flying over the municipal building?

7 A. Let me tell you something. When I went to

8 town, when I went to the church, I could go there five

9 or six times to go to the Dobrotvor and never to go

10 downtown.

11 Q. And no one with whom you associated,

12 including the Serb police officers who must have had to

13 go into town, told you that a Croat flag was then

14 flying over the municipal building; is that correct?

15 A. I did not socialise with the Serbian

16 policemen.

17 Q. Was anyone you know affected by the total

18 blockade around Busovaca that was put in place by an

19 order of Dario Kordic on the 10th of May, 1992, and

20 lifted by the same persons on the 22nd of May, 1992?

21 A. I'm not aware of anyone having had any

22 problems.

23 Q. Does your house have electricity?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. Do you own a television?

Page 19999

1 A. Yes.

2 Q. Do you own a radio -- did you own a radio and

3 television at that time?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. Did you ever listen to or watch those two

6 media?

7 A. Occasionally I watched television.

8 Q. You indicated that you met with Dario Kordic,

9 apparently for the first time, on the 13th of June,

10 1992, and you said that it was at a crisis staff

11 meeting. Can you explain that, please? Where was the

12 crisis staff meeting held?

13 A. In the municipal building.

14 Q. And who attended on behalf of the SDA,

15 please?

16 A. I don't know that, because I didn't know many

17 of these people. I knew one of them. His name was

18 Dizdarevic, but I did not know the others.

19 Q. Can you explain this meeting of a crisis

20 staff in light of part of an order issued by Dario

21 Kordic which this Court already knows about from Z111A,

22 longstanding, from 22nd of May, 1992, which says:

23 "Because the HVO of the Busovaca

24 municipality is leading the whole organisation of life

25 and defence of Busovaca, the Busovaca Municipal

Page 20000

1 Assembly, the Busovaca Executive Council, and the

2 Busovaca Municipal Crisis Command will not do their

3 duties anymore, nor will they make any decisions until

4 the conditions are improved."

5 Now, how does this square with the meeting of

6 the crisis staff which apparently was non-existent at

7 the time?

8 A. As far as I recall, we gathered in this

9 crisis staff to discuss the problems in Gradina. We

10 discussed the problem which had arisen in Grablje.

11 Q. Did you gather there to come to some

12 solution?

13 A. Yes, we gathered in the municipal building in

14 order to resolve this issue.

15 Q. But how could there be a decision taken by a

16 nonexistent body? Could you explain that, please.

17 A. I don't know that.

18 Q. Do you know a Serb named Zdravko Bilanovic,

19 or Bilanovic?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. Where did he live, please? What part of

22 Busovaca?

23 A. He lived behind the Catholic church, near the

24 stadium.

25 Q. Would that have been an area near Podjele?

Page 20001

1 Would that be a proper area to call it, Podjele?

2 A. That's not Podjele. He had an apartment in

3 the town.

4 Q. What happened to him? Where did he go?

5 A. I don't know where he went. He went over to

6 the Serbian side but I don't know beyond that.

7 Q. That was in May of 1992, was it not, roughly?

8 A. I don't know what year it was. His village,

9 left in November 1992.

10 Q. Did it concern you that you were losing

11 members of your Serbian community, which was already

12 rather small?

13 A. We were concerned but we couldn't do anything

14 about it. It was people's own will, decision.

15 Q. You had indicated in one of your summary

16 points that in order to leave Busovaca there had to be

17 written permission. I believe it's number 12. Let me

18 just check. That you had to have -- let's see. Number

19 12 indicates that you had to obtain HVO passes to be

20 let through checkpoints to travel towards Serb-held

21 territory. Can you tell the Judges, please, from whom

22 you obtained these passes?

23 A. We were obtaining those passes from the HVO,

24 Mr. Kordic.

25 Q. I'm sorry. "From the HVO, Mr. Kordic," was

Page 20002

1 that your answer?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. Now, there has been other testimony to this

4 effect, and it was indicated that one Serb who wanted

5 to leave was a fellow named Mico Bulatovic. Do you

6 know him or did you know him?

7 A. No.

8 Q. Once you got your pass, how were you able to

9 have safe conduct through to Serb territory? What did

10 the HVO do for you?

11 A. When a convoy would be put together, then the

12 time for departure would be set and we would be given

13 the escort, and the police would go with us until we

14 reached the Serb territory.

15 Q. The HVO police?

16 A. I don't know. They had blue uniforms so I

17 think my guess is that it was the civilian police.

18 Q. Croat police, in other words.

19 A. Well, such as it was in Busovaca.

20 Q. Were they armed?

21 A. No.

22 Q. Did you ever make the trip along with any of

23 your fellow Serbs and then return? Have you ever been

24 to Serb territory during the conflict?

25 A. I only went as far as Kobiljaca with the

Page 20003

1 convoys, and then I would turn back.

2 Q. That was one end of the road, was that not,

3 the Kobiljaca road, and then there was another ending

4 point. Can you tell us about --

5 A. It was Kobiljaca that was at the end. That

6 was the last Croat checkpoint.

7 Q. How long did it take to make the trip?

8 A. It's some 40 kilometres, and then it

9 depended.

10 Q. When you made the trip, how long did it take

11 you to come and go, from Busovaca to Kobiljaca?

12 A. Well, I'm telling you, it depended on the

13 size of the convoy and how it could move. So it would

14 take you one hour, an hour and a half, perhaps.

15 Q. I'm sorry. That was your trip. I'm only

16 asking about your trip. So the convoy was already

17 complete by the time it left Busovaca, or did it pick

18 people up along the way?

19 A. No. The point of departure was Busovaca.

20 That is where people gathered, came from other places

21 to Busovaca, and that was the point of departure. So

22 the convoy did not stop to take up other people from

23 other places, and there were no other people to pick up

24 up there.

25 Q. Did people leave with their furniture and

Page 20004

1 suitcases full of clothing and other personal

2 possessions? Just what did people leave with, please?

3 A. They had only smaller things, their personal

4 belongings, whatever they could put in bags. So I

5 suppose their wardrobe and things like that, nothing

6 of -- nothing bulky.

7 Q. These people who left, were they given five

8 minutes to leave, or was this a more timely, planned

9 departure?

10 A. Their departure was not planned. They were

11 gathering in the municipality of Busovaca, and they

12 were put up in some Serb houses, some Croats also

13 received them. There would be so many of us, not five

14 or ten, but as many that could gather together, we

15 would come together then and the convoy would leave.

16 Q. But the Serb families from Busovaca who left,

17 who chose to leave, did they leave in haste or did they

18 have time to gather their things?

19 A. No, they did not have to leave in haste.

20 Q. What happened to their furniture, their cars,

21 their apartments? Where did they go?

22 A. Cars, they took with themselves, and now the

23 flats are being returned.

24 Q. But at that time what happened to those

25 flats? If they were empty, who took them? Were they

Page 20005

1 empty by agreement? What happened to the furniture and

2 other personal belongings?

3 A. I do not really know much about that. But

4 those were mostly people who were living in Busovaca

5 who needed flats, who needed housing there, they left

6 it to those friends because most of those flats have

7 survived, they have not been demolished.

8 Q. How many Muslim refugees were relocated into

9 those Serb houses, if you know, please?

10 A. I don't know. All I can tell you is that the

11 village of Katici, which is next to that Muslim

12 village, of 22 houses, three survived. All the others

13 were destroyed. In the town where there were 13 such

14 houses, I believe there are eight still standing. In

15 Kuber, they were all destroyed. In the village of

16 Topolje, they were all destroyed. In Topolje, they

17 were empty but the houses were destroyed.

18 Q. Did you personally resettle any refugees or

19 other persons, including Croat residents of Busovaca,

20 into any of the homes which were abandoned by the

21 retreating Serbs?

22 A. Not in the town but, yes, in the village

23 where I live now.

24 Q. Whom did you resettle, please?

25 A. They are all Croat families accommodated into

Page 20006

1 houses.

2 Q. Are they still there today?

3 A. No. They came about a month ago to live

4 there.

5 Q. From where did they come?

6 A. One is a refugee family from the municipality

7 of Kakanj, the village of Dusina, and another one from

8 Busovaca municipality, that is, the village of Putis.

9 Q. I want to make sure I understand. Do you

10 mean from 1992 until a month ago those houses were

11 empty and you just resettled them with refugees from

12 Kakanj and Dusina? Is that what you're telling us?

13 A. When the refugees were going in 1992, they

14 were all in those houses but they were coming and

15 going. They were being accommodated in those houses.

16 After that those houses stayed empty, because these

17 houses are in my village, they belong to my relatives.

18 They were not demolished or anything. And now I was

19 told that there was a need to house some people and I

20 offered these houses for that purpose.

21 Q. They belong to your relatives, does that mean

22 your relatives fled from Busovaca?

23 A. They left those houses earlier. One of them

24 was living in Slovenia; another one in Tivat.

25 Q. If you know, refugees aside, the particular

Page 20007

1 persons who chose to leave Busovaca on the convoy that

2 you accompanied, where were they actually heading in

3 Serb territory? What was their ultimate destination?

4 A. The first destination was Rakovica. Then the

5 Serb side distributed them, but I do not know where and

6 how. But the reception centre was at Rakovica.

7 Q. I'm not quite sure you answered my question

8 about what happened to furniture and possessions. But

9 particularly, what happened to all the livestock of

10 these people?

11 A. I don't know.

12 Q. Did you take any of the possessions or

13 livestock of any of your departing fellow Serbs?

14 A. No.

15 Q. Did you benefit in any way from the sale of

16 any of these items?

17 A. To begin with, there was no sale, and I

18 didn't -- secondly, I did not benefit from it.

19 Q. Why did you stay?

20 A. Because that's where I lived, and I didn't

21 want to leave the place where I lived.

22 Q. And you didn't have to leave; is that

23 correct?

24 A. I did not. I did not have to, and I did not

25 leave.

Page 20008

1 Q. Can you explain why all the other people

2 left, if they didn't have to?

3 A. I'll explain it to you. The villages that

4 had been left, they were half/half Muslim or were

5 adjoining to Muslim villages, so they left. I mean,

6 they were afraid and that's how they left.

7 Q. But had they not always been half/half Muslim

8 or adjoining to Muslim villages? What happened that

9 suddenly made them leave?

10 A. I wouldn't know that, because they were

11 cohabiting with them. How it was, I don't know. What

12 made them leave, I don't know. What was their motive,

13 I wouldn't know.

14 Q. Were these people who came to you for

15 religious rites or functions in your capacity as the

16 Serbian priest?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. Did they share with you why they were going

19 or what their particular reasons may have been?

20 A. All they said was that they were too afraid

21 to stay there and live, since they were close to the

22 Muslim villages.

23 Q. But this was 1992. You indicated you had had

24 no problems with the Muslims. Why would they have had

25 a different perspective? What was happening?

Page 20009

1 A. Well, in 1992 you already had the incident at

2 Grablje.

3 Q. How many persons were affected, and was there

4 another incident after that in 1992, close in time?

5 A. Well, after that incident in 1992, all those

6 villagers left. Nobody had left before the incident.

7 Q. But you didn't leave. Why? What was

8 different for you?

9 A. I did not want to go. Nobody forced me to.

10 I did not live near either of the two groups, because

11 my hamlet stands on its own.

12 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Ms. Somers,

13 I believe that you have already exhausted this subject,

14 and will you please move on to another issue so that we

15 could make some progress.


17 Q. Let me ask you about a comment. There was

18 one that was left open by Defence counsel?

19 MS. SOMERS: And Your Honours, I'm not clear

20 whether the actual paragraph 17 is withdrawn as a point

21 of evidence or how we are looking at these signed

22 statements, but there was no examination elicited on

23 that point. If it, in fact, is withdrawn, I will not

24 ask that question; if it is still pending, or a part of

25 the case, as it were, then I will proceed. Yesterday

Page 20010

1 Mr. Sayers simply indicated that he was not going to

2 ask questions and will leave it to cross, but that was

3 vague as to its status in evidence.

4 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] You said

5 paragraph 17?

6 MS. SOMERS: Yes, it was 17. And if the

7 position is this is not the -- this does not comprise

8 the entire direct because it is signed, then I will not

9 worry. Otherwise I will ask a brief question about

10 it.

11 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] We do not

12 quite understand, Ms. Somers. The point in paragraph

13 17, you mean paragraph 17 of Mr. Bilic's statement, is

14 it?

15 MS. SOMERS: Yes.

16 JUDGE MAY: And which was the evidence which

17 was to be shown here, which was withdrawn.

18 MS. SOMERS: It's unclear what the point

19 would have been; however, the fact that the witness

20 seems to have allegedly under his own hand made that

21 statement, I think should at least bear some inquiry as

22 to why he would come to that conclusion.

23 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Paragraph 17

24 says:

25 "I know that several murders were committed

Page 20011

1 in the municipality in early 1993, but I do not know

2 who the perpetrators were. I assume that whichever

3 army controlled a particular territory at the time was

4 responsible for the murders which took place in it."

5 Mr. Sayers, could you please help us on this,

6 on this paragraph.

7 MR. SAYERS: Yes, Your Honours. Just to

8 remind you of what happened yesterday, we went through

9 this statement in 31 minutes. We wanted to present

10 evidence expeditiously. I just went over that

11 paragraph and said if the Prosecution wanted to ask

12 Mr. Bilic any questions about it, they certainly

13 could. As I understand it, these summaries are not

14 evidence. I think that's pretty clear. They're simply

15 a prediction of what the witness is going to say in

16 Court. And I indicated that he could answer questions

17 addressed to that subject if the Prosecution wanted to

18 ask them. The same convention was used by the

19 Prosecution when they were presenting testimony through

20 their witnesses.

21 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Yes. Now,

22 if I understand well regarding that paragraph, you are

23 saying this is the exhibit. You did not ask any

24 questions about this item. Is that so? So it is up to

25 you to decide what you want to do about this.

Page 20012

1 MS. SOMERS: Okay. I just wanted to get an

2 understanding of what the effect now -- because it is

3 different from our summaries, which were not signed and

4 were simply guidelines.

5 Q. I will ask you, simply, why on earth you

6 would make the assumption that because something

7 occurred on a particular territory, that an army was

8 responsible for it. What led you to that conclusion?

9 A. Well, you had them all over at that time

10 already, so who else could do it but an army?

11 Q. Was there no crime at all in Busovaca

12 municipality up to the time of this conflict? Was it a

13 crime-free area?

14 A. I don't know. I didn't work for the criminal

15 investigation department to be able to follow the crime

16 rate.

17 Q. You mentioned that a priest in -- let me see

18 now -- in paragraph 14, that there had been several

19 burglaries of a Serb Orthodox priest's apartment. Are

20 you suggesting that those burglaries --

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. -- which were spaced in 1991, and then twice

23 in 1992, were motivated by ethnic factors? Is that

24 your conclusion as a non-police person?

25 A. I don't know what the motive was. The flat

Page 20013

1 was burgled and the perpetrator was found. Whether the

2 motive behind it was just material gain or perhaps

3 something else, or ethnic, I don't know.

4 Q. Did you write this summary that was given to

5 us? Did you sit down yourself and write this?

6 A. I only talked to the lawyer, because I am not

7 competent enough to write that.

8 Q. You mentioned in paragraph 18 your concerns

9 about the crime situation and what you described as

10 armed refugees. It would be the bottom of page 4. Can

11 you explain, please, did you actually witness bands of

12 roving armed women and children coming into Busovaca

13 and committing crimes?

14 A. I did not see gangs of women and children. I

15 saw women and children and men in flight, and in arms

16 and in uniforms, and barefoot and hungry and thirsty,

17 escaping from the Travnik and fleeing from the Travnik

18 municipality to the Busovaca municipality.

19 Q. And these people were fleeing as a result of

20 having been driven out of their own areas; is that what

21 you're suggesting? You call them refugees.

22 A. Yes. That was the result of the conflict

23 between the Croats and Muslims in the Travnik

24 municipality.

25 Q. Are you familiar with the number of

Page 20014

1 roadblocks that existed throughout Central Bosnia

2 during the period of time you're discussing?

3 A. No.

4 Q. And you are suggesting that a person could

5 come from a point from which he was fleeing and not be

6 disarmed by the aggressive powers? Is that what you're

7 suggesting, that the aggressor would not disarm men who

8 were fleeing, or women, for that matter?

9 A. Those people who were fleeing, they were

10 fleeing under fire, so nobody -- there was no time to

11 do anything. I mean, the fighting was going on and

12 they were retreating. Let me call it a retreat.

13 Q. Where was the fighting going on? Be

14 specific. Tell us where and what month and what year,

15 please.

16 A. It was June '90 -- I don't remember the year,

17 but it was June and there was fighting around Guca

18 Gora. It was 1993 already; that's what I think.

19 Q. Let's talk about 1992. You were mentioning

20 presence of refugees. Where was the fighting at that

21 time? Please specifically tell us where it was coming

22 from, where they were coming from, where there was

23 fighting, and what months they were arriving in

24 Busovaca.

25 A. In 1992, in November, refugees from Kotor

Page 20015

1 Varos and Jajce arrived.

2 Q. And did you complain to the police

3 authorities about an increase in the crime rate? Did

4 you file any complaints?

5 A. No, I was not filing any complaints.

6 Q. It was your town. Why did you not file

7 complaints? Did you not think it would ultimately

8 affect you?

9 A. I'm telling you, I didn't really go into town

10 very often, so I would learn something when -- a long

11 time after something had happened.

12 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Ms. Somers,

13 I believe that the question of refugees, you have gone

14 through it and --

15 MS. SOMERS: No problem, Your Honour.

16 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] -- will you

17 please be mindful of the time --

18 MS. SOMERS: Yes, of course.

19 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] -- the time

20 devoted to the examination-in-chief and the

21 cross-examination, and will you please move on to the

22 next subject.

23 MS. SOMERS: Yes, of course, Your Honour. We

24 just view this particular witness as having information

25 that's terribly relevant to the indictment.

Page 20016

1 Q. I'd like to ask you, please, about the events

2 of January 1993. You told us yesterday that you did

3 not hear the multiple explosions that occurred the

4 night of the 20th of January, 1993, from your

5 not-too-distant home.

6 Can you tell us, please, a little bit about

7 the parade of some 250 or 230 Muslim males up to Kaonik

8 from Busovaca? Did you see that? And that would have

9 been, in fairness, that would have been really the

10 24th, 25th, and 26th, not the 20th. But from where you

11 were, did you observe that?

12 A. I did not observe that. I saw Muslims going

13 from Kaonik to the village Skradno -- no, Strane, and I

14 saw that only once. And what you are saying, I did not

15 see it.

16 Q. What were they doing in the village of

17 Strane?

18 A. Not Skradno. To Strane. It's their village.

19 That's where they lived.

20 Q. What was the date?

21 A. I don't know.

22 Q. Can you tell us, did you observe buses or

23 convoys coming and going along the road to Kaonik from

24 where your home was?

25 A. No.

Page 20017

1 Q. Can you indicate, please, if you had been

2 aware during this period of time that Kaonik was being

3 used to detain Muslim males of military age? This

4 would be anywhere from very late 1992 or late 1992 all

5 the way through 1993. Did you know that?

6 A. I did.

7 Q. Did you do anything about assisting any of

8 the Muslims, or any of the other persons, if there were

9 or Serbs, perhaps, in Kaonik, with rations, with food?

10 A. To begin with, I didn't know who was there.

11 Yes, I did know some individuals.

12 Q. Whom did you know who was there?

13 A. I knew a man from a neighbouring village.

14 Q. Name, please.

15 A. Asim Sunulapasic.

16 Q. Do you know why he was there?

17 A. I don't know that.

18 Q. Did you make any effort to inquire?

19 A. I did not inquire why he was in the camp, but

20 later on I started seeing him again outside.

21 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Ms. Somers,

22 the question of Kaonik is not directly related to the

23 direct examination. You were asking questions about

24 Kaonik, and I believe you should now move on.

25 MS. SOMERS: The point was more towards his

Page 20018

1 attention or inattention to what was going on in the

2 area, not so much about Kaonik itself.

3 Q. Winding down, you mentioned that humanitarian

4 aid, in paragraph 19, was distributed equally, and what

5 did you mean by "equally"?

6 A. When the food arrived, the number of people

7 was known and it would be distributed. Let's say a

8 hundred tonnes of flour would come, and it would be

9 then divided, distributed, among the number of people

10 who were registered.

11 Q. In what proportions, do you know? Who set

12 those proportions? Did your group set those

13 proportions?

14 A. No, it was not our group, but it depended on

15 the amount of food that would be brought in, and then

16 based on that, that food would be distributed. Then it

17 would be determined how much would each person get.

18 Q. And that food was food that came in on

19 convoys guided by UNPROFOR and other members of the

20 International Community; is that correct?

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. Let me just check quickly. We probably can

23 end in a second.

24 Did you ever have to seek any permission for

25 any function whatsoever from Anto Sliskovic?

Page 20019

1 A. No.

2 Q. Do you know who he is or was?

3 A. I knew him but I don't know what his position

4 was.

5 Q. Did you know Franjo Sliskovic?

6 A. I knew him. He was a cousin of mine.

7 Q. Do you know where he lived by the end of

8 1993?

9 A. As far as I know he lived in Busovaca.

10 Q. Do you know in the apartment of which Serb he

11 was living?

12 A. I don't know that.

13 MS. SOMERS: No further questions. Thank

14 you.

15 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Mr. Sayers.

16 MR. SAYERS: Just one question, acting

17 Mr. President.

18 Re-examined by Mr. Sayers:

19 Q. Mr. Bilic, the transcript, on page 33, is a

20 little unclear. You said that food was brought in, in

21 a response to a question from Ms. Somers, by UNPROFOR

22 and the International Community. Did you mention any

23 other organisation too that doesn't appear in the

24 transcript?

25 A. Yes, I also mentioned Caritas.

Page 20020

1 MR. SAYERS: Thank you very much. I thought

2 the translators had missed that but that clears it up.

3 Thank you. No further questions.

4 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Thank you.

5 Mr. Bilic, this concludes your testimony

6 before the International Tribunal. Thank you very much

7 for having come to give your evidence. You are now

8 free to go.

9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your

10 Honours.

11 [The witness withdrew]

12 MS. SOMERS: Your Honours, the next witness,

13 from the standpoint of cross-examination, will be

14 handled by Mr. Nice who should be on his way to the

15 courtroom now. If the Court would indulge us. If

16 there is any other housekeeping matter that I can

17 assist with, I can try to handle that.

18 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Very well.

19 MR. KOVACIC: Your Honour, excuse me for

20 interrupting. Before starting, my client will need to

21 go to the bathroom in a hurry. Could he leave? I

22 mean, we can work, of course, without him.

23 [Trial Chamber and legal officer

24 confer]

25 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation]

Page 20021

1 Ms. Featherstone has just made a proposal which I will

2 fully endorse. We shall take a break now and we shall

3 be back at ten past eleven.

4 --- Recess taken at 10.40 a.m.

5 --- On resuming at 11.10 a.m.

6 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Mr. Maric,

7 wait a moment. You have to take the solemn declaration

8 first.

9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly

10 declare that I will speak the truth, the whole truth,

11 and nothing but the truth.


13 [Witness answered through interpreter]

14 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Thank you.

15 Will you take your seat now, please.

16 Mr. Naumovski.

17 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Thank you,

18 Your Honour.

19 Before we start, I would just like to request

20 something of the Trial Chamber. This is one of the

21 witnesses whose outline is relatively comprehensive and

22 I would like to request that the witness perhaps

23 occasionally consult it, use it as an aide-memoire.

24 He's not going to read from it but just use it

25 occasionally if he needs to remind himself of

Page 20022

1 something.

2 MR. NICE: We'd much prefer the witnesses not

3 to do that. We've seen quite a lot of witnesses

4 reading their aide-memoires in the Defence case, and I

5 would prefer that not to happen. It's a matter for the

6 Court.

7 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] I have to say

8 that this was introduced, this custom was introduced

9 during the Prosecution case when witnesses were

10 consulting on occasions.

11 [Trial Chamber confers]

12 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] I think that

13 the principle by which we are governed here is that

14 these summaries are not made for witnesses to read

15 them, that they were introduced into our practice to

16 help us move on through testimonies more

17 expeditiously. We shall rather listen to the witnesses

18 directly.

19 It is quite true that there are also some

20 exceptions when we have allowed the witnesses to do

21 it. When you reach a certain point, if there is really

22 a problem, at such point we shall ask Mr. Nice if he

23 insists on his objection on that particular point, and

24 we shall then rule accordingly.

25 So Mr. Naumovski, will you please now begin

Page 20023

1 your examination of the witness.

2 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Thank you,

3 Your Honours.

4 Examined by Mr. Naumovski:

5 Q. Mr. Maric, would you please state your full

6 name for the Chamber.

7 A. My name is Zoran Maric.

8 Q. Mr. Maric, you were born on 6 March 1957, in

9 the village of Podjele, in the Busovaca municipality.

10 A. Yes.

11 Q. You're an ethnic Croat and you're a Roman

12 Catholic by religion.

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. You spent your entire life in Busovaca; you

15 continue to live there to date with your wife and two

16 children.

17 A. From my birth until now I have lived in my

18 hometown of Busovaca.

19 Q. Mr. Maric, after you graduated from

20 elementary and high school, you studied forestry in

21 Sarajevo and you graduated in 1982.

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. Mr. Maric, I would just like to ask you to

24 make the work easier for the interpreters, so if you

25 could please pause between my question and your

Page 20024

1 answer.

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. So you have a degree in forestry, and as a

4 forestry engineer you worked in a company in Travnik

5 called Sebesic and then in a company named Lasvansko,

6 and then after that you were part of the Busovaca

7 Forestry Department.

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. In 1990, when the multiparty system was

10 introduced, you became involved in the formation of the

11 Busovaca branch of the Croat Democratic Union of

12 Bosnia-Herzegovina.

13 A. Yes. Yes, I'm a member of the HDZ from 1

14 August 1989.

15 Q. After the 1990 elections in Busovaca, where

16 the HDZ party received the most votes, you became the

17 president of the municipal parliament.

18 A. At the first session, which was held on 14

19 December 1990, I was elected the presiding officer, as

20 it was called at that time, and Asim Sunulapasic was

21 also elected there.

22 Q. Let us -- when you say that this was a

23 president of the municipal council, or board, that was

24 the local government; isn't it so?

25 A. Yes.

Page 20025

1 Q. After the elections, this municipal assembly

2 worked until the 2nd of April, 1992, when there was a

3 clear threat of war. In this last session of the

4 parliament, to whom did this municipal parliament

5 transfer its powers?

6 A. The situation in the territory of former

7 Yugoslavia was worsening, and with the wars in Croatia

8 and Slovenia and with the pull-out of the JNA from

9 Croatia and redeployment of its troops in

10 Bosnia-Herzegovina, the situation was very difficult.

11 And following the principles of the system which was

12 enforced at that time, we needed to call an

13 extraordinary session of the local parliament, which

14 was to appoint a body that would continue to lead the

15 municipality in this situation of the imminent threat

16 of war. In this session I was appointed the president

17 of the crisis staff of the municipality of Busovaca.

18 Q. I didn't quite understand what you said. You

19 were talking about April or another month?

20 A. That was on the 2nd of April.

21 Q. This crisis staff to which the municipal

22 parliament transferred its powers was composed of

23 members of all parties?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. And for the municipality of Busovaca, it

Page 20026

1 meant that it included Serbs, Croats, and Muslims?

2 A. Yes. I can say openly here that the Croatian

3 Democratic Union and the SDA, which was Muslim, and

4 SDS, which was Serbian, in these first parliamentary

5 elections had a joint list of candidates, and this

6 coalition -- and in addition to this coalition, a list

7 of members, representatives, of the Reform Party and

8 the SDP were also included.

9 Q. We will later touch on this coalition. I

10 don't want to take you so broadly into this area. But

11 you were the chief of this crisis staff, and from

12 October 1992 until April 1994 you were also acting

13 president of the HVO government in Busovaca?

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. After the war ended, from April 1994 until

16 1996, you were the minister of forestry for Central

17 Bosnia of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina?

18 A. Yes, that is correct.

19 Q. Currently, Mr. Maric, you're president of the

20 parliament of the Central Bosnia canton, which is one

21 of the ten cantons in the Federation of Bosnia and

22 Herzegovina established after the Washington Accords?

23 A. Yes. Currently I am the president of the

24 parliament of the Central Bosnia canton. This canton

25 has a special status, and in the founding session I was

Page 20027

1 appointed the president of this body and I was in that

2 position for about one month. A law was to be put in

3 force where there was to be a rotation between myself

4 and the Muslim representative who was to become the new

5 president, and in November last year I again resumed

6 the position of the president of the parliament of

7 Central Bosnia canton. And in that same session I was

8 also elected a member of the House of Representatives

9 in the Federation, and I'm also a member in the House

10 of Representatives of Bosnia and Herzegovina, which

11 consists of five Croats, five ethnic Muslims, and five

12 Serbs.

13 Q. You said that you were elected at the session

14 of the parliament of Central Bosnia canton, and you

15 received votes from Croats and maybe some others.

16 A. I was elected by all the political parties

17 which were in the parliament. They consisted of the

18 Croats, Bosniak Muslims, and others, and I was elected

19 unanimously.

20 Q. Just one further detail in that regard. Who

21 is now your deputy? With whom do you rotate in this

22 position of president?

23 A. In the House of Representatives of my canton,

24 it is Ejub Mujic from Kiseljak, an ethnic Muslim.

25 Q. Very well. Let me take you to 1990. The

Page 20028

1 Trial Chamber heard enough about the new parties which

2 were formed, nationally based: the HDZ the SDA and the

3 SDS. Now, speaking of the Busovaca branch, the

4 Busovaca branch started organising after the other two

5 ethnic-based parties were already established?

6 A. Yes. The Croatian Democratic Union, in its

7 session of 30th of September, elected its leadership,

8 and I was elected one of them. I was the

9 vice-president. Then Mr. Barac, from Zenica, was

10 elected president.

11 Q. When you say "30 September," you're referring

12 to 1990?

13 A. Yes, 1990.

14 Q. And who was the other vice-president?

15 A. The other vice-president was Mr. Niko

16 Grubesic, and also Mr. Dragutin Franc, and the

17 secretary -- to the position of secretary, Mr. Dario

18 Kordic was elected.

19 Q. When we're talking about this period, you

20 know that Mr. Dragutin Cicak claimed that Mr. Franc was

21 the HDZ president in Busovaca?

22 A. I am not at all surprised that Mr. Dragutin

23 Cicak stated something like this, because he was -- he

24 took an early retirement because of his illness, and

25 Mr. Dragutin Franc was the head of the coalition list

Page 20029

1 for the Busovaca parliament; that is, the coalition of

2 the HDZ, SDA, and SDS.

3 Q. You mentioned an illness in respect of

4 Mr. Cicak. Were there any problems? You held meetings

5 in your municipal HDZ board. I assume that you

6 attended a number of such meetings where Mr. Cicak was

7 also there. Were there any incidents?

8 A. Occasionally there were some when he wanted

9 to push through some of his ideas, but he is a person

10 who is not fully accountable for his actions.

11 Q. You touched on something else, and I just

12 want to follow up on this. You said that there were

13 three parties -- the HDZ, the SDA and the SDS -- at the

14 municipal level formed a pre-election coalition where

15 certain things were agreed and a platform was adopted

16 with which you went to elections. Do you know whether

17 the representatives of the SDS, HDZ and the SDA met

18 with the president of SDA, Mr. Alija Izetbegovic, in

19 order for him to confirm the -- to the coalition?

20 A. Yes. And Mr. Alija Izetbegovic agreed that

21 the SDA should become a coalition member, together with

22 the SDS and the HDZ.

23 Q. My apologies. I think that we are too fast,

24 so I'm pausing, and I would like you to pause also,

25 because it is important that everything said be

Page 20030

1 interpreted.

2 Mr. Maric, the Trial Chamber has had an

3 opportunity to hear that on the 18th of December, 1990,

4 the first parliamentary elections were held in Bosnia

5 and Herzegovina, and your coalition, the coalition of

6 the HDZ, SDA, and SDS, won; they won the largest number

7 of votes in Busovaca municipality. But among the three

8 coalition members, which party won the most?

9 A. At that time the Busovaca parliament had 60

10 representatives. The HDZ, SDA, and SDS coalition

11 received 64 per cent of the vote. Out of the 64 per

12 cent, the HDZ had 20 representatives.

13 Q. On the basis of your pre-election coalition

14 agreement, I assume that you had also agreed on who was

15 going to get which position. Could you just tell to

16 whom some of the top positions were allocated.

17 A. At the first session I was elected the

18 president of the municipality and Mr. Asim Sunulahpasic

19 was elected the president of the local government.

20 According to the list, a Serb was supposed to be given

21 the position of the chief of police. The chief of

22 police was the name used for that position. But the

23 Serbs didn't get that position; rather it went to the

24 Muslims. But Peko Rajak became the secretary of the

25 executive council, that was the third position, and my

Page 20031

1 secretary was Niko Grubesic.

2 Q. When you say "they," Peko Rajak was a

3 representative of the Serbs so you're referring to the

4 Serbs.

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. So who was then appointed the chief of

7 police?

8 A. Mr. Husnija Neslanovic became the chief of

9 police.

10 Q. Who was allocated the post of the commander

11 of the Territorial Defence?

12 A. It was another ethnic Muslim. It was

13 Mr. Husein Hadzimejlic who became the commander of the

14 Territorial Defence.

15 Q. Other positions were also filled in this

16 local government at that time, and one of the positions

17 went to Mr. Kordic.

18 A. Yes. Mr. Kordic was appointed the secretary

19 of the defence, that is, the secretariat of defence as

20 it was called then.

21 Q. The body that you mentioned was part of the

22 civilian government in the municipality.

23 A. Yes.

24 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation]

25 Mr. Naumovski, I should only like to ask Mr. Maric if

Page 20032

1 these parties -- that is, the elections in which he

2 participated in 1990, at the beginning of the

3 multiparty system, the three parties he mentioned, the

4 HDZ, the SDA, and SDS, were they all organised on

5 strictly ethnic grounds? Were they all organised on

6 strictly ethnic principles?

7 A. As for the democracy in 1990, which was

8 taking place in the territory of the former Yugoslavia,

9 every people had its own multiparty system, so that the

10 Croat people had the Croat Democratic Union, which was

11 the predominant party in the territory of

12 Bosnia-Herzegovina. As for the Party for Democratic

13 Action, it is the party of the Muslim people, which

14 also played an important role in its own people. As

15 for the SDS, it was also one of the important parties

16 of the Serb people.

17 Yes, they were based on the principle of

18 democracy because each one of those parties included

19 the word "democratic" in its name.

20 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Thank you.

21 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation]

22 Q. I just looked at the transcript, Mr. Maric.

23 It doesn't really matter but I believe there is an

24 error, and also in the summary. I said that the first

25 elections took place on the 18th of November. However,

Page 20033

1 here it says December, and also the summary says that.

2 A. On the 14th of December I was elected the

3 president of the assembly, that is, the mayor, and

4 Mr. Asim Sunulahpasic, that was when we held the

5 constituting assembly of the municipality of Busovaca.

6 And the elections took place on the 18th of November.

7 Q. Very well. Thank you.

8 A. I'm sure you all know that they took place on

9 the 18th of November.

10 Q. I do apologise for responding but it was an

11 error and we need to be precise. Very well. Thank

12 you.

13 Then some time in the summer, in July 1991,

14 the JNA offensive began when the Republic of Croatia

15 was attacked. You know which duties Mr. Dario Kordic,

16 as the secretary for the defence of the municipality,

17 discharged in order to prevent young people from

18 joining the JNA and fighting the Republic of Croatia.

19 A. Yes. As the situation aggravated in the

20 territory of the former Yugoslavia, from the territory

21 of the municipality of Busovaca, people mostly went to

22 the territories of other republics at the time; that

23 is, those young men who were leaving to serve with the

24 army at that time, Mr. Dario Kordic very actively

25 committed himself, when asked my villagers of other

Page 20034

1 places, to see that their children did not go to the

2 front because the then Yugoslav People's Army would --

3 as soon as they came to serve the army, they would send

4 them to the front. So their parents were asking that

5 their young sons not be sent from the municipality to

6 serve the Yugoslav People's Army, and Mr. Dario Kordic

7 was helping the people of Busovaca in that.

8 Q. Moreover, not only you but other inhabitants

9 in Busovaca, and Mr. Kordic too, of course, conducted

10 certain activities to block the armament convoys going

11 through Bosnia-Herzegovina with a view to preventing

12 that these weapons be taken to the territory of the

13 Republic of Croatia.

14 A. Well, the weapons were being taken to the

15 territory of the Republic of Croatia, mainly to those

16 areas inhabited by Serbs. So that in October I stopped

17 a convoy heading for Sarajevo, or rather its ultimate

18 destination was Ustikolina, and at that time I stopped

19 that armada at Kaonik.

20 I can also say that that convoy was carrying

21 shells which, at a later stage, began to fall on

22 Sarajevo, and I requested -- I demanded from

23 Mr. Stjepan Kljuic and Mr. Hebib, the then Minister of

24 the Interior, to see what these convoys were

25 transporting in the area. However, this Mr. Hebib, he

Page 20035

1 came and he personally took over and released a convoy

2 which went on to Sarajevo, and lamentably, there the

3 shells were dropping and bombing Sarajevo all that

4 time.

5 Q. You have just told the Court about one of the

6 convoys which were coming up. The Court has already

7 had the opportunity to hear about this because a lot

8 has been already said about the village -- about the

9 attack on the village of Ravno. It is paragraph 12.

10 Just one sentence. You will agree, or rather, that is

11 your idea that you, the Croats, perceived the attack on

12 the village of Ravno in September as the beginning of

13 the war in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

14 A. Yes. The first attack, the first armed

15 attack on the -- in the territory of

16 Bosnia-Herzegovina, on the village of Ravno, was the

17 beginning of the offensive of the JNA on the territory

18 of Bosnia-Herzegovina. However, some, especially

19 Muslim front men, did not realise that the attack on

20 the village of Ravno was also the beginning of the

21 offensive against the Croat and Bosniak, that is,

22 Muslim, people.

23 Q. Tell us, please, that was the time when young

24 men were leaving, and I'm referring specifically to

25 Central Bosnia, to Busovaca, were leaving to go and

Page 20036

1 help the Republic of Croatia in the defence of its

2 borders. This was not done publicly, was it? It was

3 mostly done on the sly.

4 A. Indeed. Many young men went from the

5 territory of the municipality of Busovaca, but not only

6 from the territory of Busovaca, they were going from

7 almost all the territory of the then Lasva Valley, not

8 to say the entire territory where there are Croats,

9 they went to help their brethren in Croatia. When they

10 arrived back in coffins, they had to be buried at

11 night.

12 Q. Let's just try to give the full portrait of

13 the situation. 1991 is still the time when the only

14 lawful army in the territory of Bosnia-Herzegovina is

15 still the same JNA, which was attacking the Republic of

16 Croatia. Is that so?

17 A. Quite. The only lawful authority and army,

18 which at that time was then in the territory of

19 Bosnia-Herzegovina, that is, the former Yugoslavia.

20 Q. Very well. We can move on.

21 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Your Honours,

22 we are moving to paragraph 14.

23 Q. In that attack of the JNA on the Republic of

24 Croatia, the shelling of Vukovar, that is, Dubrovnik,

25 added to your concern, distressed further you, the

Page 20037

1 Croats, in Bosnia-Herzegovina. I'm talking about

2 November 1991. Because of what was happening, did

3 you -- and realising the gravity of the moment, did you

4 then try to organise yourselves?

5 A. Quite so. The difficult situation in the

6 territories of the former Yugoslavia, and especially if

7 you look at the territories where the Yugoslav People's

8 Army has engaged in an open conflict with Croatia and

9 where thousands of men were getting killed, when there

10 was a major exodus of expelled people, when we could

11 see that this same script was being transferred from

12 the territories of Croatia to the territories of

13 Bosnia-Herzegovina, and we then began simply to

14 organise ourselves, to set up a stronger system because

15 we realised -- we saw that the government was looking

16 at it differently and we wanted to organise ourselves

17 in a democratic manner by creating those regions which

18 we tried to unite.

19 Q. If I understand you well, at the regional

20 level you simply discussed how to put up a defence

21 against the JNA.

22 A. Our principal goal was to defend ourselves

23 against the aggression in the territories of

24 Bosnia-Herzegovina, that is, the territory of our

25 municipality.

Page 20038

1 Q. In the territory of your region. Was that

2 the Travnik regional community, I suppose?

3 A. Precisely. We first organised ourselves by

4 establishing communication among all the municipalities

5 to see what was the stage of preparedness to resist

6 that aggression.

7 Q. However, it was because of the different

8 perception by peoples in Bosnia-Herzegovina as to the

9 developments in the Republic of Croatia, you the Croats

10 in Bosnia-Herzegovina established, how shall I call it,

11 an umbrella organisation, an umbrella union, for you

12 the Croats in Bosnia-Herzegovina; is that so?

13 A. Correct. On the 18th of November we

14 organised ourselves in the Croat Community of

15 Herceg-Bosna.

16 Q. You didn't give us the year, sorry. It was

17 1991, wasn't it?

18 A. Yes, sure, 1991.

19 Q. Tell us, please, briefly, in a sentence if

20 you can, which was the primordial task of this Croat

21 Community that was established on the 18th of November,

22 1991?

23 A. The Croat Democratic -- that is, the Croat

24 Community of Herceg-Bosna its primary goal was to

25 organise itself against the aggression of the Serb

Page 20039

1 army, that is, Yugoslav People's Army at that time.

2 Q. The Croats were a minority people. This was

3 a minority people in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

4 A. Yes, it is true.

5 Q. Once again, I mean in percentage terms

6 against other peoples.

7 A. According to the census of 1991, at that time

8 we had about 17.2 or 17.3 per cent.

9 Q. Tell us, please, because it needs to be said

10 at this point in time, until that time, until the

11 beginning of the war, in the territories of the former

12 Yugoslavia, regardless of the numerical size of peoples

13 in Bosnia-Herzegovina, the peoples in

14 Bosnia-Herzegovina, and by this I mean, in the first

15 place, Serbs, Muslims, and Croats, they were all equal

16 constituent peoples of that republic, of

17 Bosnia-Herzegovina.

18 A. Yes. These three peoples, Muslims came first

19 because they were the largest community, then Serbs,

20 and then Croats; they were constituent peoples in the

21 territory of Bosnia-Herzegovina. We are one of the

22 constituent peoples and we wanted to defend our

23 homeland, Bosnia-Herzegovina, on equal terms.

24 Q. Mr. Maric, you attended the meeting which

25 founded the Croat Community of Herceg-Bosna.

Page 20040

1 Mr. Kordic was present too.

2 A. Yes, I was present at that meeting when the

3 Croat Community of Herceg-Bosna was founded, and

4 Mr. Dario Kordic was present. He was also the

5 president of the Busovaca HDZ at the time. And we

6 signed it. He signed on behalf of Busovaca. Had he

7 not signed it, then I would have done that.

8 Q. In those early days, there were not any major

9 activities of the Croat Community of Herceg-Bosna, but

10 as the time went on, the presidency of the Croat

11 Community of Herceg-Bosna was set up. Will you tell us

12 who became the members? Who constituted the presidency

13 of the Croat Community of Herceg-Bosna, and which were

14 the duties of that body?

15 A. The presidency of the Croat Community of

16 Herceg-Bosna had its president, and the president was

17 Mr. Mate Boban. The vice-president -- one of the

18 vice-presidents was Mr. Dario Kordic, and also Mr. Bozo

19 Rajic. In addition to these -- along with these bodies

20 we had all the heads, the front men of municipal

21 governments, or rather mayors, mayors from the Croat

22 people and presidents of the executive boards, that is,

23 of local governments from those municipalities which

24 did not have their mayors.

25 Q. So all the municipality's signatories to the

Page 20041

1 declaration were represented on that presidency, isn't

2 it?

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. Tell us, after July 1991, which was the body

5 in the Croat Community of Herceg-Bosna which was

6 responsible for regulator activity, which was a

7 legislative body? Was it this presidency that we are

8 talking about or perhaps some other authority?

9 A. In July 1992, the government was -- of that

10 body was designated; that is, the government which was

11 operated, which was vested with all the properties,

12 qualities of the government; that is, departments for

13 economy, finance, defence, and so on. So, in point of

14 fact, the government was designated. And one of the

15 vice-presidents, one of the deputy prime ministers, was

16 Mr. Jadranko Prlic, and Anto Valenta was the

17 vice-president responsible for Central Bosnia.

18 Q. I see. But let us try to be more precise.

19 So until the appointment of the HVO government, it was

20 the presidency which was responsible for the adoption

21 of laws, was the legislator, and after the government

22 was founded --

23 A. The government took over, assumed all the

24 powers that was necessary for the further functioning

25 of that body.

Page 20042

1 Q. Very well. Thank you. We can then follow

2 the chronological order, and we are coming to the

3 incident in Kaonik in May 1992.

4 As you have already told the Court, on the

5 2nd of April, 1992, the crisis staff of the municipal

6 assembly of Busovaca was set up. It consisted of ten

7 members, and you were the chairman or the head of that

8 crisis staff; is that so?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. And you ran the affairs and life in the

11 municipality in view of the threat of war which was

12 looming over Bosnia-Herzegovina. But will you tell us,

13 which was the chief task of the crisis staff?

14 A. The chief task of the crisis staff was to run

15 the municipality in wartime conditions. That was the

16 general task. Because in the territory, or the

17 municipality of Busovaca, there were three barracks: at

18 Kacuni, Draga, and Kaonik. This crisis staff intended

19 to organise the activities about the evacuation of the

20 Yugoslav People's Army and to carry it to the end.

21 Q. Mr. Maric, we are being warned to slow down

22 and to make breaks, to make pauses between question and

23 answer, so shall we try to do that?

24 A. Yes. I apologise.

25 Q. It's not only your fault; it's also mine.

Page 20043

1 Now, briefly, very briefly, was there any

2 negotiation between the Muslim and the Croat community

3 in Busovaca who would take which barracks, in view of

4 the location of each of these barracks?

5 A. Indeed, there were negotiations, and we

6 reached an understanding at a meeting of the crisis

7 staff that the Kacuni barracks, which was evidently in

8 an area with the Muslim population, that it should be

9 given over for management to the Muslim part.

10 And the barracks at Draga, which was located

11 in the territory of the Croat population, it was agreed

12 that its armaments and the management over it should be

13 given to Croats.

14 The Kaonik barracks, which was four

15 kilometres away, in the direction of Zenica, four

16 kilometres from Busovaca, in the direction of Zenica,

17 at Travnik, it was located amidst the Croat majority.

18 But it was agreed then that the armaments in the

19 barracks should be distributed 50/50.

20 Q. Very well. Tell us, please, as the

21 negotiations about the dislocation of JNA from Busovaca

22 were going on, or rather when the Draga barracks in

23 Busovaca was evacuated on the 26th of April, 1992, is

24 also the day when the JNA bombed the town of Busovaca,

25 isn't it?

Page 20044

1 A. Yes. On the 26th of April -- and that was

2 Easter, the little Easter, as we call it -- Busovaca

3 was bombed at 1920. In that attack, three persons were

4 killed: a Muslim, a Croat, and a little 14-year-old

5 Croat girl. Buildings were on fire.

6 Q. Very well. I do not think we have to go into

7 detail; we just want to draw a general picture.

8 This business about the evacuation of the

9 troops from the Draga barracks, this business was

10 headed by Mr. Glavocevic on behalf of the crisis staff?

11 A. The crisis staff appointed Mr. Florijan

12 Glavocevic and Husein Hadzimejlic to conduct

13 negotiations and see about the evacuation of the

14 Yugoslav People's Army. So they were the two men

15 responsible for the evacuation of the barracks;

16 barracks, I mean first, second, and third barracks.

17 Q. Because of the bad experience with the Draga

18 barracks, I suppose there were negotiations about their

19 pull-out from the Kaonik barracks. These negotiations

20 were conducted much more carefully, if I may put it

21 that way. Could you briefly tell us, how did these

22 negotiations go?

23 A. As for negotiations about the evacuation of

24 the Kaonik barracks, it was agreed that it would be

25 evacuated and that the weaponry which was in it, that

Page 20045

1 it should be distributed equally between the Bosniak

2 Muslim and the Croat people. However, as this

3 distribution was underway -- and before that, I had a

4 crisis staff meeting, and everything was agreed how we

5 would proceed about this, and from that meeting I went

6 to the Kaonik barracks with Mr. Niko Grubesic, and then

7 the troops were -- the troops of the Yugoslav People's

8 Army were already set to go. They were all lined up

9 and we were waiting for them to be able to go out so

10 that we could jointly -- Florijan and Hadzimejlic

11 should then try and split up what there was to split

12 up.

13 Q. Very well. Sorry I butt in, but I wanted to

14 say it was precisely because the JNA was in the

15 barracks. Will you tell us, please, where was the

16 control point of the HVO? How far from the barracks?

17 A. It was some 250 metres from the barracks, the

18 control point.

19 Q. And why was it put up?

20 A. The reason for it was to prevent the movement

21 of their units and to supervise the comings and goings

22 from the barracks, because I had also received

23 reports. And it is on record. I can check that. I

24 can check my conversation with Mr. Tomislav Sipcic,

25 which took place in Zenica, and where before that there

Page 20046

1 had been a major theft of weaponry, because that is

2 where the weapons of the Busovaca Territorial Defence

3 were stored. So that a theft had also taken place, so

4 that we had to monitor who was entering and leaving the

5 Kaonik barracks.

6 Q. And tell us, the place where this

7 supervision, where this control point, Sendolin Bridge?

8 A. Yes, it is Sendolin Bridge.

9 Q. Who are the people living there?

10 A. They are predominantly all Croats.

11 Q. And tell us, while you were in the barracks,

12 did you hear anything happening outside?

13 A. I was in the barracks and I heard a rifle

14 shot. There was a shot. And I can say that at that

15 moment the members of the Yugoslav People's Army took

16 their positions, that is, they all leapt into their

17 trenches. And at that moment I was informed that an

18 incident had taken place at this control point, that a

19 Croat and a Muslim had been wounded. And when this

20 gunfire, when this incident happened, we then

21 immediately stopped everything. We said that the

22 Yugoslav People's Army would not leave that place.

23 And then Mr. Glavocevic and Mr. Hadzimejlic

24 came to me and said that in the discotheque called

25 Leptir, a largeish group of able-bodied persons,

Page 20047

1 Muslims, headed by Mr. Merdan, Dzemal, wanted to simply

2 enter the Kaonik barracks so that they could take over

3 all those weapons themselves.

4 Q. Tell us, please: The understanding about the

5 division of weapons between the Muslims and Croats in

6 Busovaca, that was an understanding reached at the

7 local level, municipal local level; is that so?

8 A. Indeed, because the crisis staff, this staff,

9 as it was called then, took all decisions at their

10 meetings only with regard, in relation, to the relevant

11 municipality, that is, people of the municipality

12 concerned. So that we had reached that understanding,

13 and Mr. Dzemal Merdan, he was the commander of the

14 Territorial Staff, of the Territorial Defence,

15 quartered in the municipality of Zenica.

16 Q. This arrival of large numbers of military --

17 of the Muslims, what was supposed to do?

18 A. He was there trying to take over the

19 weapons.

20 Q. In the end, Mr. Maric, who was to blame,

21 which side was to blame for the breach of agreement

22 which you reached in Busovaca municipality?

23 A. Mr. Dzemal Merdan is the guilty party because

24 he wanted to take over these weapons in a forcible

25 way. This created mistrust in relation to me and

Page 20048

1 Mr. Hadzimejlic because it was never part of the

2 agreement that Mr. Merdan would come with his soldiers

3 to take over those weapons.

4 Q. Mr. Maric, we should slow down. I believe

5 that one answer was not fully interpreted.

6 In addition to Mr. Merdan, who came from

7 Zenica, were there local commanders from the Patriotic

8 League or Territorial Defence who were involved in this

9 breach of agreement?

10 A. Yes. The commander of the Busovaca Patriotic

11 League, Mr. Dervis Sarajlic, also known as Gica, was

12 involved. That was his nickname.

13 Q. Can you remember any other name?

14 A. Alija Begic was also there. He was the

15 commander of the Patriotic League, but I don't know

16 what rank he held.

17 Q. This is why this agreement could not be

18 implemented, for which Mr. Florijan Glavocevic and

19 Mr. Husein Hadzimejlic were responsible.

20 A. Yes, this agreement could not be implemented,

21 and I requested that the crisis staff meet again so

22 that we could discuss the issue again. However, that

23 night, this was around 8.30 p.m., the representatives

24 of the Bosnian Muslims did not want to come, they

25 refused, and we made an agreement about what to do with

Page 20049

1 those weapons.

2 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Your Honours,

3 can we give an exhibit to the witness to see. It's

4 Z100. I prepared a copy and it can be given to the

5 witness to look at, with the permission of the

6 Chamber. Thank you.

7 Q. A little while ago, Mr. Maric, you said that

8 you had certain information that weapons were stolen

9 from the Kaonik barracks. Did you have any reports

10 that those weapons were being sold to one of the sides?

11 A. Yes. You should know that weapons could have

12 been taken only from the JNA, and a blackmarket was

13 created with these weapons.

14 Q. You said that that night a meeting of the

15 crisis staff was supposed to have taken place but it

16 never did, and then you, and I assume the Croat members

17 of the municipal staff, but you held a meeting in which

18 you tried to find a way out of the situation in which

19 you found yourselves.

20 A. Yes, precisely, and this is how this order

21 was compiled. It consists of 19 items, and it was

22 signed by the then commander of the municipal staff,

23 Mr. Ivo Brnada, and also it was signed by Mr. Dario

24 Kordic as the HVO vice-president.

25 What I want to say is that the Croatian

Page 20050

1 leadership, headed by myself, compiled this order and

2 it was signed as such. Mr. Dario Kordic was only there

3 to confirm that he was present at the time when the JNA

4 military barracks were vacated from the municipality of

5 Busovaca.

6 Q. Perhaps we can just briefly go through the

7 contents of this document, which was adopted on 10 May

8 1992. It speaks for itself. We shouldn't burden the

9 Trial Chamber with it, but you brought it up in your

10 evidence so maybe you want to comment on some of these

11 items. If not, we can perhaps just wait for the

12 cross-examination.

13 A. The order as such, I think, speaks for

14 itself. I think it is clear what it enjoined.

15 Q. Very well, then. Let us not go into any

16 details. I assume that there will be questions

17 relating to it.

18 But one of the items refers to the TO and

19 other organisations being placed under the control of

20 the HVO, or they will have to surrender their weapons

21 to the HVO. Was this decision ever implemented?

22 A. That decision was never implemented, because

23 the Territorial Defence, headed by Mr. Hadzimejlic,

24 continued to operate in the Busovaca municipality up

25 until 25 January 1993, which was terrible for us Croats

Page 20051

1 and all people of this territory because it was a day

2 without precedent in the history of the Busovaca

3 municipality.

4 Q. Mr. Maric, there is also an order that the

5 units which are deployed in the Leptir club, that they

6 surrender to the HVO. Did they ever surrender to the

7 HVO?

8 A. No, they never surrendered to the HVO. They

9 just pulled out. They were let go and they left the

10 area of the Leptir discotheque.

11 Q. Can you also say something about the item

12 referring to Merdan, Sarajlic, and Begic? Were they to

13 be arrested and released?

14 A. As far as I know, Messrs. Begic and Sarajlic

15 were not arrested. I just know that Mr. Merdan was

16 arrested and then released.

17 Q. But you do not know any details about it

18 because you were not involved in it?

19 A. I just wanted to add that sometime around

20 1200 hours I went home because I was fairly sick, so I

21 wasn't there until the very end.

22 JUDGE ROBINSON: May I ask, who would affect

23 the arrest of Merdan, Sarajlic, and Begic? Who would

24 actually arrest them? Which body?

25 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation]

Page 20052

1 Q. Did you understand the question of Judge

2 Robinson, Mr. Maric?

3 A. Your Honours, Mr. Dzemal Merdan was arrested

4 by the police.

5 JUDGE ROBINSON: Were the others arrested?

6 A. The others, from the information I had, were

7 not arrested.

8 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you.

9 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Thank you,

10 Your Honour.

11 Q. Another item from this document. A temporary

12 curfew was introduced, and "temporary" explains it all,

13 I think, but how long did this curfew last?

14 A. From what I know it only lasted for 72

15 hours.

16 Q. Were there any other repressive measures

17 taken against the Busovaca population, members of any

18 ethnic groups?

19 A. There was no repression. And Busovaca,

20 according to the census, had 47 per cent Bosniaks and

21 they were never mistreated, just as the Serbs were not

22 in those days, at the time when the curfew was in

23 force.

24 Q. Mr. Maric, the crisis staff, who was the

25 authority at the time, was then disbanded and the HVO

Page 20053

1 decided to take over the functions of government.

2 A. Yes. By this order, the crisis staff was

3 disbanded, and I was its head, and the Croatian Defence

4 Council from then on assumed the full authority for the

5 Busovaca territory.

6 Q. Can you tell me, why was the town blocked and

7 why were the transports controlled on the road through

8 Busovaca?

9 A. You must know that the bombing of the 26th of

10 April by the JNA had created a lot of suspicion, and

11 any movements of the JNA caused a lot of suspicion on

12 the part of the Croat and Muslim population. The first

13 bombing was terrible for us. So the checkpoints were

14 set up in order to prevent the passage of the JNA.

15 Q. If I understand you correctly, you simply

16 wanted to control the traffic; you wanted to control

17 all the convoys and the passage of persons and goods.

18 A. Precisely.

19 Q. You said a moment ago that the Territorial

20 Defence continued to operate in the Busovaca territory

21 after 10 May 1992. Can you tell the Trial Chamber

22 where the office of the TO commander, Mr. Husein

23 Hadzimejlic, was throughout 1992?

24 A. It was in Busovaca.

25 Q. Where? In which building?

Page 20054

1 A. In the municipal building, in one part of the

2 building.

3 Q. In the same building where you worked; is

4 that so?

5 A. Yes.

6 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Your Honours,

7 we can move on. We're moving to paragraph 23.

8 Q. After several days of further JNA attacks on

9 your territory, you started to get organised and

10 started organising municipal services.

11 A. That is exactly right. The HVO government

12 was organised which wanted to restart the normal life

13 in Busovaca municipality, and things started coming

14 back to normal in those days.

15 Q. At the time when you reorganised the

16 administration, could the central government in

17 Sarajevo exercise any influence there in Busovaca?

18 Because at that time the government was besieged by the

19 Bosnian Serbs.

20 A. I can say that there was no influence from

21 the central government in Sarajevo because all

22 communication lines were practically interrupted. So

23 we had to rely on ourselves, and together with the

24 Bosnian Muslims we tried to solve all issues which we

25 needed to solve.

Page 20055

1 I need to point out here that the area of

2 Kupres was occupied at the time, and that was the main

3 highway to the coast. So you couldn't use the road

4 through Kupres and we had to look for a way out. We

5 started building a road, which we called "The Road of

6 Salvation," and that was the only way through which we

7 could resupply food stocks and medication which we

8 needed for the population of Busovaca municipality.

9 Q. What road was this; can you tell us?

10 A. This was the road Novi

11 Travnik-Pavlovica-Gornji Vakuf, which went on over

12 Mount Vran --

13 Q. Very well. Thank you.

14 A. -- down to Herzegovina.

15 Q. A moment ago you told the Trial Chamber that

16 the HVO government in the Croatian Community of

17 Herceg-Bosna was established in August. But looking

18 from May on and taking into account all of the HZ HB,

19 was there a distinction between the HVO-HDZ in

20 Busovaca, or was there still confusion over this?

21 A. At first there was confusion. They didn't

22 know what was the military and what was the civilian

23 authority.

24 Q. When was this crystallised so that people

25 knew precisely what was the competence of the civilian

Page 20056

1 and what was the competence of the military component?

2 A. When the HZ HB government was established,

3 the civilian HVO and the military part of the HVO

4 started being separated, because the military part then

5 established its main headquarters, it was led by

6 Mr. Milivoje Petkovic, and the civilian part was led by

7 Mr. Prlic. They had its departments, and one of them

8 was for national defence; it had its own minister. So

9 they had ministries which worked and instructed the

10 civilian authorities on what to do.

11 Q. So your civilian HVO government in Busovaca

12 in the latter part of 1992 relied on this central

13 government of the HVO in Mostar; is that correct?

14 A. Yes, exactly.

15 Q. I assume, then, that in this period, that is,

16 the latter part of 1992, the military and the civilian

17 police were separated, that is, their combatants, the

18 two police forces in Busovaca?

19 A. Yes. The head of the civilian police was

20 appointed and the military police had its own

21 combatants and its own commander, so the civilian and

22 military police were separated.

23 Q. We can move on to paragraph 24.

24 Mr. Maric, who was appointed the head of the

25 civilian government in Busovaca?

Page 20057

1 A. As far as I remember, it was Franjo Kristo.

2 Q. I think we have a misunderstanding. I'm

3 talking about the first HVO government head in

4 Busovaca, not the civilian police.

5 A. The first civilian HVO administration

6 president was Mr. Florijan Glavocevic. And I was

7 appointed as an acting president of the HVO on 1st

8 August 1992.

9 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation]

10 Mr. Naumovski, I think we should try to move on more

11 speedily. I must ask, if Mr. Nice does not have any

12 objections on various paragraphs, perhaps you could be

13 more leading, provided there are no objections to that,

14 in order to speed matters up.

15 Mr. Nice, are there some paragraphs on which

16 you would not be objecting if the witness were led?

17 MR. NICE: I think it's unlikely that there

18 are any whole paragraphs that are not paragraphs where

19 matters should be dealt with carefully, because this is

20 a very central and wide-ranging proof, or offer of

21 proof, as it's called. But if there's -- well, if

22 Mr. Naumovski is a little more leading from time to

23 time, I'll stand up and object when I think that we've

24 gone too far. Would that help? It's a little

25 difficult. The paragraphs are far too packed, really,

Page 20058

1 to say, of any paragraph, it can all be led.

2 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Very well.

3 Thank you.

4 Right. So we shall ask you to do that. As

5 you know, we must remember the time. We have one hour

6 yet, so will you try to be as concise as possible and

7 to lead your witness when a paragraph allows you to do

8 so, evidently under the control of the Court.

9 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Thank you,

10 Your Honours. I didn't want to do this in order to

11 avoid the objections from the Bench opposite, but I

12 will now try to do so that we can speed things up.

13 Q. Mr. Maric, you sketched for us how the

14 authority was set up in Busovaca, how you reorganised

15 the administration. And can you tell me whether the

16 civilian HVO or administration which was established

17 and which operated in Busovaca, did it discriminate the

18 Muslim citizens of Busovaca, that is, in comparison to

19 the civilian administration, before the time when the

20 HVO took over?

21 A. No. Out of seven local departments, or

22 ministries, three went to the Bosniak Muslims.

23 Q. So did the same people who worked in the old

24 municipal government continue to work in the new

25 government after the HVO took over?

Page 20059

1 A. Yes.

2 Q. Can you please tell the Trial Chamber whether

3 any employee or head of department in this newly

4 established government had to sign any oath of loyalty

5 or any other kind of oath to anyone?

6 A. No one ever had to sign any oath of loyalty.

7 Q. Was this introduced as a new kind of feature?

8 A. No, it was not.

9 Q. No verbal or written statement of loyalty was

10 ever introduced?

11 A. I never told anyone to sign any statement,

12 because I considered every citizen of Busovaca equal.

13 Anyone who lived in Busovaca municipality, I wanted him

14 to be able to have all the rights that he needed to

15 exercise.

16 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation]

17 Mr. Naumovski, will you ask Mr. Maric if the municipal

18 staff of whatever ethnic origin were all paid in the

19 same way.

20 A. Yes. Everybody was being paid a salary

21 according to the scales that were established.

22 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation]

23 Q. Perhaps just one additional question. There

24 was a classification of different jobs, and these job

25 were all classified and it had --

Page 20060

1 A. Yes. Every job had its own description. It

2 has its -- and it was made part of the scales, and

3 everybody received salary according to the scale.

4 Q. In this reorganisation of government, was

5 anyone dismissed out of all those who were employed in

6 the previous administration?

7 A. Nobody in the municipal government was

8 dismissed.

9 Q. And were any positions cancelled?

10 A. No. All employees who worked in the

11 municipal government continued to work in their jobs.

12 Q. I have a specific name. What happened to

13 Mr. Asim Sunulapasic's position? Could he stay with

14 the government? He was the president of the former

15 government. What happened to him?

16 A. The president of the HVO government had the

17 executive power, and according to the organisation,

18 according to the old system, that was the position that

19 was held by the president of the executive board, so

20 that Mr. Sunulapasic was no longer an official, but he

21 was allowed to stay. He was a specialist, an expert in

22 economic affairs, and he was asked to stay. But he

23 decided to go to Vatrostalna, where he had been, and I

24 was with the Sumarija.

25 Q. You told a while ago that there was no

Page 20061

1 discrimination against Muslims, and you agree with me

2 that there are numerous examples to show that the

3 Muslims took part in decision-making and in political

4 life of the town and municipality of Busovaca, even

5 after May 1992; is that so?

6 A. Absolutely.

7 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Your Honours,

8 so far the Defence has not produced too many exhibits.

9 However, Mr. Maric personally signed quite a number of

10 documents, and I should like Mr. Maric to be shown

11 these documents so that he could confirm them. And we

12 may also touch upon some of them briefly. Ninety per

13 cent of the documents that we wish to produce were

14 signed by Mr. Maric and he was their author. We

15 already handed over these documents to the registry, so

16 perhaps we could go through them document by document.

17 I believe that would be the speedier way to do that.

18 These are, by and large, very short

19 documents, so could we have English versions on the

20 ELMO and Croat versions shown to the witness. We won't

21 spend too much time on these documents.

22 THE REGISTRAR: The document will be number

23 D241/1.

24 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation]

25 Q. Mr. Maric, this is an introductory

Page 20062

1 document to facilitate our work. This document is of

2 the 16th of July, 1992. It was signed by the

3 then-president of the HVO, of the Busovaca

4 municipality, Mr. Glavocevic. In a sentence, this

5 document speaks for itself?

6 A. Yes. One sees that it is ordered that the

7 trading company Tisovac, for private bakery Orman,

8 owned by a Muslim from Kacuni, be issued two tonnes of

9 flour, which of course had to be paid at the valid

10 prices.

11 Q. Very well. So this is an administrative act,

12 I'd call it. It is an administrative act. It has its

13 number, the date, and so on and so forth. However,

14 some of these papers are entitled "order," some are a

15 so-called decree or certificate, so could that be this

16 wandering around, this uncertainty in the early days,

17 as you put it?

18 A. Yes, quite.

19 Q. So when it says "order," it doesn't mean a

20 military order, does it?

21 A. No, it doesn't.

22 Q. Very well. Thank you.

23 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] So we can

24 move on to the second document.

25 THE REGISTRAR: Document D242/1.

Page 20063

1 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation]

2 Q. Mr. Maric, you, I mean Croats and Muslims,

3 cooperated in matters of the school curriculum and the

4 beginning of the school year 1992/1993. From what I

5 can see, and from what I read in this document, the

6 municipal government in Busovaca also cooperated with

7 schools in Kacuni and all other schools in the

8 municipality. This document is of the 31st of July,

9 1992.

10 In a sentence, you hereby order that the

11 elementary school First of May in Kacuni be approved

12 alone?

13 A. Yes. We cooperated, and all schools in the

14 municipality of Busovaca were treated equally and

15 received money to pay salaries to all the employees,

16 regardless of whether they were Croats, Bosniak

17 Muslims, Serbs, or Montenegrins. All those who were

18 employed were receiving salaries that were due them.

19 Q. When you say the First of May, that is what

20 the school was called, isn't it?

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. And tell us, in the territory of the

23 municipality of Busovaca, Muslims and Croats account

24 for 90-something per cent of the population. Hadn't

25 you agreed with the Muslim population that the subject

Page 20064

1 of literature should cover, should encompass, only

2 Muslim and Croat authors rather than only Serb as well,

3 as in the former state; was that so?

4 A. Yes, indeed. But if I may, if Your Honours

5 allow me, I should like to simply add that in Busovaca,

6 inhabited mostly by Croats and Bosniaks, who lived and

7 worked in the territory of the municipality of

8 Busovaca, they were taught by -- they were provided

9 instruction mostly by Montenegrins; that is, mostly

10 teachers -- the teachers were Montenegrins and Serbs,

11 and we learnt more about Serb authors than about Croat

12 and Bosniak authors.

13 Q. Excuse me, Mr. Maric. We do not really have

14 to waste the energy of the Court with such detail. I

15 believe the Court has already heard a great deal about

16 this, so we can move on. But since we are discussing

17 literature, did you also have a flexible school policy

18 regarding the curriculum and about subjects such as

19 geography and history?

20 A. Yes, indeed. Everything that expressed

21 history and geography, we agreed that each -- that

22 everyone, in his own language, should instruct his own

23 children in the way that he prefers, that he deems

24 better, in a democratic way.

25 Q. And tell us, please: As for the name of the

Page 20065

1 language, did the Croat and the Muslim side agree about

2 that?

3 A. Yes. The Croats spoke Croatian, and they in

4 the beginning called it the mother tongue. Because, as

5 you know, under the old system it was Serbo-Croatian,

6 the language of Bosnia and Hercegovina, that is, Croat

7 or Serbian, so that they -- and history proved that.

8 In the plebiscite of 1993, they decided that their

9 language should be called Bosnian, or rather Bosniak,

10 as they prefer it.

11 Q. And to round off this set of questions about

12 education, you had also reached an understanding with

13 Muslims in the territory of the municipality of

14 Busovaca to use the school forms which was more to the

15 liking of either group; that is, the Muslims could use

16 forms which they preferred and Croats could use theirs?

17 A. Yes. Everybody had the right to use the

18 forms which they preferred, and they could print the

19 forms in the language they preferred. Nobody forced

20 anything upon anyone, because that was the agreement

21 which was abided by.

22 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Thank you.

23 We can move on with documents. Can we have the third

24 document, please.

25 THE REGISTRAR: Document D243/1.

Page 20066

1 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation]

2 Q. Mr. Maric, I forgot, while we were looking at

3 the second document, and again I forgot to ask you.

4 Will you please confirm: You are the author of these

5 documents? I forgot to ask you about that, the

6 previous one and this one.

7 A. Yes, indeed, this is my signature, my

8 document.

9 Q. This document is dated the 6th of August,

10 1992, and from what I gather from this, you were still

11 part of the payment system in your region, because you

12 write to the public auditing office in Zenica; however,

13 its branch in Busovaca. What was the purpose of this

14 document?

15 A. Let me just explain. Busovaca was at the

16 crossroads. Just to remind the Court, under the

17 previous administrative subdivision it was under the

18 influence of Zenica; rather, it was part of the Zenica

19 region, so that the payments -- the then public

20 auditing service, as it was called then, the territory

21 of Busovaca was also under its jurisdiction. And in

22 the document that you have before you, I address it to

23 the payment service in Zenica, requesting the printing

24 of the coupons, of the notes which were to be used as

25 legal tender in the municipality of Busovaca. Because

Page 20067

1 at that time, in addition to these coupons, we also had

2 a krona, or rather the then Croatian dinar in

3 circulation, and subsequently krona and German mark, so

4 that all these currencies were in circulation both in

5 the territory of the municipality of Busovaca and

6 Bosnia-Herzegovina.

7 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Thank you.

8 Can we move on to the next document.

9 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation]

10 Mr. Naumovski, do all these documents bear on the same

11 issue? Do they all bear on the same question, that is,

12 the conduct of the municipal authorities, the

13 management of their affairs in an equitable manner? Is

14 that it?

15 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Indeed.

16 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Do you have

17 many of them?

18 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Yes, indeed.

19 And also the treatment of the Muslim side. Yes, they

20 are all identical.

21 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] How many

22 more documents of this kind do you still have?

23 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Well, at

24 least a dozen or so in this set.

25 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Listen, I

Page 20068

1 think you could move on faster because we have grasped

2 what it is all about. I really think you should

3 present all these documents as one and then ask a

4 general question covering all these documents. The

5 witness can identify them. I think we are spending too

6 much time going through these documents individually,

7 so that I think it is better if you have sets of

8 documents, to show them to the witness all as one

9 document and try to move on faster. I believe we have

10 already grasped what it is about.

11 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Yes, I shall

12 be very happy to abide by the suggestion of Your

13 Honour, but the documents are not identical as regards

14 the areas, the walk of life. We have referred to

15 education which is one subject, and then we have

16 finance --

17 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Yes. Yes,

18 we understand that, but it is the same issue. So I

19 think you should present all these documents as a set,

20 at one and the same time. We understand what you are

21 talking about, the way in which the municipality was

22 administered, was managed. I do not think we really

23 need to spend too much time on this because we are not

24 here to analyse the municipal administration at the

25 time and go into every detail of it.

Page 20069

1 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Yes, I

2 understand, Your Honour, but could you please tell us,

3 in which way should we proceed? Should they all be

4 marked with one number and then have only subnumbers,

5 slash something? I don't know how technical we need to

6 do it. Perhaps the registrar could help us. How

7 should we mark them?

8 [Trial Chamber confers]

9 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] I think they

10 can have separate numbers. There is no problem with

11 that. They can still have separate numbers. Yes.

12 Needless to say, the Prosecutor will be entitled to go

13 back to these documents in the course of

14 cross-examination, to go back to all these documents.

15 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Yes. We

16 shall try to spend as little time as possible.

17 Can the witness be shown the next document,

18 please. Oh, we already have the next document.

19 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Could the

20 registrar then please give the whole set of documents

21 to the witness, and then have them introduced. You

22 have the series of documents. Will you please give the

23 whole batch to the witness and then they will be marked

24 as they are produced.

25 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Can we have

Page 20070

1 the number for this first document, and just a very

2 short question.

3 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Wait,

4 Mr. Naumovski. We must ask the registrar to prepare

5 all the remaining documents. They will be numbered

6 immediately and then they will be adduced in a batch.

7 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Yes, Your

8 Honour.

9 Your Honours, if I may take the liberty to

10 suggest, perhaps we could make the break now and then I

11 could have it ready with the registrar before we resume

12 in the afternoon. I think we have ten minutes before

13 the break, so perhaps we could break off now. I do

14 apologise. Perhaps I'm taking too much liberty but

15 perhaps it might speed matters up.

16 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] No. I would

17 rather that we continue until 1.00. We shall have

18 these all numbered, and I think we can finish this

19 question. We are still at paragraph 26. Could we

20 please move on to paragraph 27.

21 Very well. Could you now give us the number

22 of these documents.

23 THE REGISTRAR: The documents will be

24 numbered D241/1 to D252/1.

25 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation]

Page 20071

1 Q. Mr. Maric, I presume you understand that

2 every document has now its number, and do not bother

3 about that. Just a sentence in this first document.

4 You are sending this letter to a company

5 called Nigma in Busovaca. Will you agree with me that

6 it transpires from it that every employee, in agreement

7 with a decision of the 30th of April, 1992, employed in

8 the territory of the municipality of Busovaca and

9 nevertheless is engaged in the HVO or TO is entitled to

10 his salary. Is that so?

11 A. Yes, it is.

12 Q. So regardless of which armed formation he

13 belongs to.

14 A. Yes, regardless of whether he is a member of

15 the HVO or the TO.

16 Q. Very well. Thank you. We will move on to

17 the next document, which is a document of the 14th of

18 August, 1993.

19 This is your decision to set up municipal

20 departments in the municipality of Busovaca.

21 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Excuse me.

22 Registrar, could we have copies? Could the Judges have

23 copies of the documents, please?

24 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation]

25 Q. So it now lists those areas. Will you look

Page 20072

1 at Article 3, please. This was the task of local

2 boards. Could you tell us what that task was?

3 A. The task of --

4 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Wait,

5 Mr. Naumovski.

6 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]

7 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] I think it

8 would be better to have these documents on the ELMO, to

9 change these documents on the ELMO. As we go through

10 them, the witness has the documents before him, but can

11 we also go through them on the ELMO? As we move

12 through them, can we also move them on the ELMO?

13 Mr. Naumovski.

14 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] The

15 registrar, we marked it as number 5. It is a document

16 bearing our number 5. Or is it perhaps on the ELMO

17 already? Yes, that's the document. Item 3 or Article

18 3.

19 Q. Mr. Maric, could it please be moved on the

20 ELMO so we can see Article 3.

21 A. Well, the task of local boards was to

22 organise social and economic life on the territory of

23 the area; that is, for every part of the municipality,

24 such branches had to be established.

25 Q. This is another one of your documents. You

Page 20073

1 signed this document.

2 A. Yes, I did. This is my document. Only I

3 have to say that it was signed by my secretary, on my

4 behalf, but with my authorisation.

5 Q. The next document, and we see it on the ELMO,

6 this is a press release and you wrote it on the 19th of

7 August, 1992. Two words only. What were the

8 circumstances which resulted in this document

9 prohibiting the disturbance of citizens by gunfire,

10 prohibiting poaching, and so on and so forth?

11 A. I can say here that because there were

12 already some problems with armament already arriving in

13 the territory of the municipality of Busovaca, that

14 type of peace we had in Busovaca was getting worse.

15 There were poachers and thefts, and I therefore issued

16 a press release prohibiting all the unnecessary

17 activities which could disturb people, because we know

18 how an unnecessary shot can upset somebody, let alone

19 all these things that were happening.

20 Q. Very well. Thank you. This document is of

21 the 26th of January [as interpreted], 1992, and it is

22 another document testifying to the relations between

23 Croats and Muslims at the time. This is your document,

24 addressed to the Assistant Minister of National Defence

25 in Zenica District, and in it you apply for some

Page 20074

1 funds. Now, it shows what was the relationship between

2 these formal bodies of authority in Bosnia-Herzegovina

3 and the HVO.

4 A. Quite so.

5 Q. Will you please look at the second paragraph

6 which, to my mind, is the most telling.

7 A. Indeed. Here I ask that equal treatment be

8 accorded to the problem of supply of both the Croat

9 Defence Council and the Territorial Defence, because

10 the HVO had received barely anything -- hardly anything

11 from the central government in Sarajevo, that is, than

12 Zenica district; so that I requested that it be treated

13 equally and to supply in an equal manner all the

14 participants, all the peoples, in Busovaca.

15 Q. There seems to be a mistake in the

16 interpretation. The document is of the 26th of August,

17 1992.

18 A. Yes, it is. The 26th of August.

19 Q. This document again testifies about the

20 relations not only between Muslims and Croats but also

21 others. The document is of the 1st of September,

22 1992. You signed it and hereby you authorise, you give

23 your consent for, the operation of the Serb Orthodox

24 Charitable Society of Dobrotvor?

25 A. Yes.

Page 20075

1 Q. Thank you. Next document. This is dated the

2 10th of September, 1992. You signed it, and here you

3 took a decision. These two gentlemen, Abdul Selim

4 Teskeridzic and Dzevad Pripoljac, are designated for a

5 particular job, aren't they?

6 A. Yes, indeed. Mr. Teskeridzic is a

7 construction engineer; he worked in the municipality of

8 Busovaca. Mr. Pripoljac was a civil engineer, a

9 technician; he also worked in the municipality of

10 Busovaca. And you can see what they were tasked to

11 do.

12 Q. Yes, we do not have to go into that. Just a

13 word. They are both Muslims, aren't they?

14 A. Yes, indeed. What I want to say is that they

15 both were working.

16 Q. Yes. Next, please. Mr. Maric, this document

17 is one of the 17th of September, 1992. You signed it,

18 and it has the format of a conclusion. Now, items 1

19 and 2, what do they mean?

20 A. Basically they mean that documents may be

21 issued at the request of citizens applying for them,

22 which were about birth, marriages; that they may be

23 issued these forms with their own heading, that is,

24 either Croat Community of Herceg-Bosna or only

25 Bosnia-Herzegovina.

Page 20076

1 Q. So these are birth certificates, death

2 certificates, school certificates, so on and so forth.

3 A. Yes. Yes, all those documents which are to

4 be issued.

5 Q. Item 2, in point of fact, speaks about the

6 responsibility of workers concerned if they failed to

7 comply with what it says in item 1.

8 A. Yes.

9 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Your Honours,

10 if you wish, we can go on, but it seems to me that the

11 time has come for our usual break. But it is, of

12 course, up to you.

13 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the Judge,

14 please.

15 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] How many

16 more of these documents do you still have,

17 Mr. Naumovski?

18 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] I'm not

19 getting the interpretation. I didn't understand your

20 question.

21 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] How many

22 more of these documents do you still have,

23 Mr. Naumovski?

24 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Eleven in

25 this particular set.

Page 20077

1 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Then we

2 shall make our break now and we shall resume after one

3 hour and 40 minutes.

4 I will have to ask you to speed up, to

5 expedite the browsing of these documents, because they

6 all bear on the same issue. We are really not here to

7 examine in detail how the municipality of Busovaca was

8 administered.

9 Thank you very much. The session is

10 adjourned.

11 --- Luncheon recess taken at 1.05 p.m.















Page 20078

1 --- On resuming at 2.44 p.m.

2 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Just a

3 second, Mr. Naumovski. I would like to give the

4 registry the floor now. Could we hear from the

5 registry all the numbers so that we can very precisely

6 know.

7 THE REGISTRAR: [Microphone not activated] --

8 admitted by the Defence will be numbered D241/1 to

9 D261/1.

10 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Thank you.

11 I think that you all have these documents and that the

12 numbers were correctly assigned.

13 So Mr. Naumovski, I count now on your

14 cooperation so that we go straight to the core of the

15 matter. I know that these matters are important and

16 these documents are important for the Defence, so I'm

17 not going to try and prevent you to submit them to the

18 witness, but having said that, I would like you to go

19 straight to the most important topic and try to avoid

20 any -- being too long on anything. Thank you.

21 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Your Honour,

22 I believe that we really will not spend a lot of time

23 on it. We will run through these documents very

24 quickly, the author of which was Mr. Maric.

25 Q. And Mr. Maric, to get immediately to the

Page 20079

1 point, the next document is a document dated 24

2 September 1992, D251/1, a decision signed by you

3 regarding setting up of joint patrols to prevent

4 unauthorised logging, and it was to be equally composed

5 of the HVO and the TO.

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. And this is another document that testifies

8 to the cooperation even when it's about logging?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. Thank you.

11 Next document, please, D252/1, another

12 decision, dated 15 October 1992. This is when the

13 crime rate started increasing, and you're directing the

14 civilian police and telling them what their tasks were?

15 A. Yes. We needed to restore law and order in

16 the area, so the police imposed compulsory business

17 hours to restaurants and bars, and were fining those

18 who were in breach of those.

19 Q. Next document, please, 253/1. And another

20 decision, not signed by you, but you recognise it as

21 your own. You can see just part of the seal. It has

22 to do with the beginning of the school year. This is

23 the 1992/1993 school year.

24 A. Yes. I, in fact, issued an order that the

25 military formation of the ABiH in the village of Putis

Page 20080

1 is ordered to vacate the premises in the regional

2 elementary school so that the school children could

3 start using the building.

4 Q. So it had to do with the beginning of the

5 school year?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. Next document, 254/1, a longer document,

8 dated 2 November 1992. This is November 2nd. A

9 decision on establishing municipal commission for

10 receiving, housing and taking care of displaced persons

11 and refugees of Busovaca.

12 A. Yes. Due to the operations of JNA in the

13 territory of and the army of Republika Srpska, caused

14 an influx of refugees, and I decided to set up a

15 commission which would be dealing with all the problems

16 relating to the displaced persons and refugees.

17 Q. Just one question. On the list of people who

18 were appointed as members of this commission, you see

19 that this was a joint commission?

20 A. Yes. It was a mixed commission, composed of

21 both ethnic Croats and Bosnian Muslims.

22 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Your Honours,

23 you can see that under 5, 6, 7, 8, and 13, these

24 members are Muslim.

25 A. Yes. I can name them name by name.

Page 20081

1 Q. You don't have to. Let's go to the next

2 document, 255/1, a document dated 4 November 1992 in

3 which you designate a replacement for Mrs. Alima Besic,

4 the head of the lands -- of the office of land survey

5 and property rights of Busovaca, because of her sick

6 leave?

7 A. Yes. And Mr. Abdul Selim Teskeridzic

8 replaced her and was appointed as acting head of the

9 office.

10 Q. They are both Muslims?

11 A. Yes, they are both Muslims, and we needed to

12 find a Muslim to replace a Muslim head of the office.

13 Q. Next document, 256/1, also dated 4 November

14 1992, that is, end of 1992. Again, appointments.

15 Under 3, clerk Zuhra Rizvic is appointed clerk for

16 statistical data in the fields of agriculture, water

17 resources, and hunting. And what was her ethnic

18 origin?

19 A. She was also an ethnic Muslim.

20 Q. Next document, 257/1, dated 12 November,

21 1992. This is your order, Mr. Maric, in which you

22 request of the commanders of the military police of the

23 HVO, as well as the ABiH military police and the

24 forestry administration, to step up their patrols.

25 A. Yes. The unauthorised logging continued and

Page 20082

1 increased so I had to issue such an order to bring this

2 to an end.

3 Q. So these were joint patrols in the middle of

4 November 1992.

5 A. Yes. Both Muslims and Croats operated in

6 concert in the territory of Busovaca municipality.

7 Q. Next document, 258/1, another document you

8 compiled, dated 27 November 1992. A working body was

9 established. Could you tell us, what was this

10 commission and who were the members?

11 A. It was a joint commission, mixed

12 composition. Marko Pezer, Nezir Huseinspahic, and

13 Abdul Selim Teskeridzic, the last two were ethnic

14 Muslims, they were to tackle the problem of the town

15 dump. This problem we still actually have to date. It

16 has not been resolved.

17 Q. Sir, you mentioned that these two gentlemen

18 were Muslims. We have heard in this case that some

19 Muslims who were still employed with the municipal

20 government were there only formally but that they

21 really did not come to work.

22 A. No. These gentlemen came to work; I can

23 confirm that, and also they themselves can confirm

24 this. Mr. Nezir Huseinspahic is still with us.

25 Q. Next document, 259/1, from the very end of

Page 20083

1 1992. This is 22 December 1992. Could you please tell

2 us, what kind of a decision was this?

3 A. This is a one-time decision for the financial

4 aid to the families of killed soldiers of the HVO and

5 ABiH in the amount of 100 German marks per family, and

6 a list was provided of those who were killed. Also, in

7 addition, 400 kilogrammes of flour was to be

8 distributed, 25 kilogrammes per family.

9 This was as relief to the victims of war

10 because the war had already spread all through the

11 municipality of Jajce, and the units were involved in

12 the defence of the municipalities of Travnik and

13 Jajce.

14 Q. Unfortunately we do not have the list which

15 you mentioned, but we can agree that the HVO, the local

16 Busovaca HVO government, in the end of December 1992,

17 allocated financial aid to families of both HVO and

18 ABiH soldiers who were killed in action.

19 A. Yes, that is exactly what I mentioned. There

20 was no discrimination. The families of soldiers from

21 both formations who were killed were provided this

22 aid.

23 Q. Next document, D260/1. You did not sign it,

24 but I would just like you to tell us about this company

25 called Niskogradnja. They had a branch in Busovaca.

Page 20084

1 A. Yes. Mr. Senad Ekmedzic was its manager, a

2 Muslim. You see a receipt. The managers provided aid

3 to their assistants, to their units, including

4 cigarettes and other items. You can see that any

5 manager in the municipality, regardless of whether he

6 was an ethnic Croat or Muslim, could give such aid to

7 different troops.

8 Q. This assistance was given to the 333rd

9 Mountain Brigade?

10 A. Yes.

11 Q. The last one in this batch is 261/1. This is

12 an invitation to a meeting, which you sent out on

13 January 8, 1993.

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. Go ahead.

16 A. Yes. We had problems with the Sumarija

17 Busovaca company due to the war conditions. I

18 organised a meeting in order to try to resolve these

19 problems in Sumarija Busovaca. I invited

20 representatives of both the Croats and Muslims so that

21 we could tackle these problems.

22 Q. You called both political and military

23 representatives?

24 A. Yes, because we had a serious problem there.

25 Q. We can move right ahead, Mr. Maric; that is,

Page 20085

1 go back to the outline --

2 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Excuse me,

3 Mr. Naumovski, but once these documents are going to be

4 submitted to the witness -- we see that these

5 documents, for the most part, concern 1992 and they

6 deal with cooperation between Croats and Muslims in the

7 municipality of Busovaca.

8 Mr. Maric, has this cooperation continued in

9 1993? Because the last document that we were presented

10 with was dated the 8th of January, 1993. Has the

11 cooperation continued? Please go on.

12 A. The cooperation continued until 21 January

13 1993, when the situation in the Busovaca municipality

14 deteriorated after the checkpoint at Kacuni incident.

15 We attempted to resolve this problem in a peaceful,

16 democratic way. However, on the 24th of January, 1993,

17 in the afternoon, two HVO policemen were killed,

18 Messrs. Ivica Petrovic and a taxi driver named

19 Bogdanovic from Kiseljak. On that day the situation

20 deteriorated, and on the 25th of January, 1993, at 5.30

21 a.m., the aggression of the Muslim forces began in the

22 territory of Busovaca municipality, and that's when the

23 situation deteriorated.

24 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Very well,

25 Mr. Maric. What happened with the administration of

Page 20086

1 your municipality? Because I see that you remained

2 president up until the spring of 1994. Did you

3 continue to administer your municipality? What was

4 your relations with the Muslims at that time?

5 A. As a representative and the president of the

6 Croatian Defence Council, I attempted to establish

7 contacts with the Bosniak side. However, during 1993

8 these contacts started being reestablished in February

9 so that we continued to have exchanges in 1993. From

10 February until the 15th of April, 1993, we continued to

11 try to talk and agree that no more incidents be

12 created, because we also signed a ceasefire in

13 February.

14 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Thank you,

15 Mr. Naumovski.

16 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Thank you,

17 Your Honour.

18 Q. We shall reach these subjects that you just

19 mentioned in no time. But we've already broached some

20 of these subjects in paragraphs 27, 28, and 29, so

21 perhaps there's no need to go back to those.

22 Again, just one thing. Is it true that you

23 Croats changed the street names unilaterally?

24 A. We never changed street names unilaterally.

25 In the town of Busovaca it was changed jointly, so as a

Page 20087

1 street was called after a priest and another street was

2 named after an Islamic leader in Busovaca.

3 Q. When you say jointly, you're referring to

4 1991, after the elections.

5 A. Yes, after the elections in 1991.

6 Q. This Court has already had ample opportunity

7 to hear about the arrival of refugees, so on and so

8 forth. So perhaps just a figure. In 1992, how many

9 Serbs, in your view, left Central Bosnia and passed

10 through Busovaca, towards the territory held by the

11 army of Bosnian Serbs?

12 A. Your Honours, it is difficult to speak about

13 all those facts if one looks at what was happening in

14 the territories of Bosnia-Herzegovina. But if I

15 look -- if I cast my eye and my mind back to the

16 territories of the municipalities of Travnik, Busovaca,

17 Zenica, 35.000 -- 30.000, at least, to 35.000 Serbs

18 left. Perhaps even more. Those were column after

19 column. That was a horrible sight, and only a man who

20 saw that can speak about it.

21 Q. You can look at the next document, D262/1.

22 A. Yes, but I don't have it.

23 Q. The usher will help you.

24 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] We have all

25 these numbers here, and will you please distribute

Page 20088

1 them, yes, to avoid any misunderstanding.

2 THE REGISTRAR: The following documents will

3 be numbered D262/1 to D274/1.

4 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation]

5 Q. Mr. Maric, again a document of yours, of 11th

6 November 1992. Only Article 1, in one sentence, for

7 the Court. Apparently there were some individuals,

8 residents of Busovaca, who were requesting to leave; is

9 that so?

10 A. Yes. As they were leaving the territories or

11 municipalities, the Serbs of ethnic origin, so they

12 asked to leave the territory of the municipality of

13 Busovaca. And on the 11th of November, 1992, I issued

14 them with this document so that they could leave.

15 Q. So these are people who wanted to leave of

16 their own free will, is it?

17 A. Of course. We never tried to chase anyone

18 away from the territory of the municipality of

19 Busovaca.

20 Q. Tell us, please: Is there any truth in the

21 claim that Mr. Kordic, and then the HVO, and I suppose

22 you, as the president of the government, that you

23 charged every family, that is, every person of Serb

24 origin who went through Busovaca in the direction of

25 the territory held by the Bosnian -- by the army of

Page 20089

1 Bosnian Serbs?

2 A. No, we did not charge anyone. We did not

3 charge anything, regardless of what ethnicity the

4 person leaving the territory of Busovaca belonged to.

5 Q. Very well. We already heard about that from

6 the previous witness, so there is no need to broaden

7 the subject.

8 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] We are moving

9 to the next paragraph, Your Honours.

10 Q. Mr. Maric, the Court has already heard that

11 the tension began to mount in Busovaca with the arrival

12 of refugees and displaced from Jajce in December 1992.

13 What did it mean for your municipality? Was it a

14 negligible pressure or was it a major pressure?

15 A. You need to know that into the territory of

16 Busovaca a large number of displaced persons began to

17 arrive. With the arrival of expelled Croats and

18 Bosniaks from the territories of Jajce, the territories

19 then of the Travnik municipality, Kotor Varos, so that

20 we issued an order, because those who had lost their

21 flights were trying at all costs to find another

22 flight, and we tried to prevent that. We prohibited

23 any unlawful entry to flights. So this is this

24 document issued to the military and civilian police to

25 prevent such acts so as -- with a view to avoiding some

Page 20090

1 undesirable circumstances.

2 Q. You're referring to document D263/1?

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. Very well. Tell us, please: I suppose that

5 the Busovaca HVO government was trying to alleviate

6 those tensions in Busovaca, together with Muslim

7 authorities, and there was a meeting between

8 businessmen of Muslim and Croat origin in January to

9 see if they could organise themselves somehow so as to

10 try to ensure life in that area more or less.

11 A. Yes. We had a meeting to see what we could

12 do to receive those poor displaced people arriving from

13 the northern territories of Bosnia and Herzegovina,

14 from where they had been driven away by Serbs, by the

15 Yugoslav and the Serb army, and we tried to accommodate

16 them in a humane, in a manner worthy of man. Because

17 Busovaca, before the war, Busovaca was a tourist resort

18 and there were over 2.000 summer cottages. So we tried

19 to put them up in those cottages so they could live

20 life worthy of human beings, if anything could be

21 called that at that time.

22 Q. Perhaps the time is now to look at the second

23 set of documents, which refers to that period of time

24 when a large number of refugees arrived in the

25 territory of the municipality of Busovaca in November

Page 20091

1 1992. D264/1, and this is the order of the 19th of

2 November, 1992, you are ordering the civil defence and

3 the chief of the department for national defence to put

4 all units on full alert.

5 A. Well, you can see from the date itself, the

6 19th of November, the units of the Croat Defence

7 Council and BH army, which had been defending Jajce,

8 had to pull out of the town of Jajce so that all the

9 people from the territory of the municipality of Jajce

10 headed for Busovaca; not only Jajce, but also from

11 Kotor Varos, Jajce, and Dobrovici. And they headed for

12 Busovaca, Vitez, and all the other areas in the Lasva

13 Valley. And we had to prepare everything we could to

14 prepare for themselves everything that they needed so

15 that they could go on with their lives.

16 Q. As you signed the previous document -- not

17 this one, but the one before this one -- and this one,

18 so was it a military order or was it an order of the

19 mayor of the municipality?

20 A. This was my order, the order, that is, of the

21 civilian mayor of the municipality, because I had to

22 issue such an order to find some roof, some

23 accommodation, for every one of those wretched, of

24 those miserable, of those unfortunate people at that

25 moment.

Page 20092

1 Q. So this is not a military order?

2 A. No, this is not a military order; it is my

3 order, issued by me personally.

4 Q. Mr. Maric, you must have been, in your

5 capacity, been involved in plans for the defence of

6 Jajce, defended jointly by the HVO and the army of

7 Bosnia and Herzegovina.

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. Have you ever heard, as it is claimed in this

10 case, that Jajce was handed over, that it fell as a

11 result of some understanding between the HVO and the

12 army of Bosnian Serbs?

13 A. I have never heard anything of this sort. I

14 cannot remember exactly, but I know that very many

15 soldiers from Busovaca, the defenders of Jajce, died,

16 and those victims who fell, nobody ever signed such an

17 agreement, nor can I say -- no. I can say that no

18 agreement was ever signed about this.

19 Q. The document is now 265/1, another order of

20 yours that you signed on the 19th of November, 1992,

21 and in Article 1 the curfew is imposed for the night

22 hours in the territory of the municipality of

23 Busovaca. Item 2 says that during the curfew only the

24 patrols of the police station of Busovaca, 1, can move

25 in the territory and municipality; that 2, the patrols

Page 20093

1 of HVO, the military police; and 3, the BH army units

2 also allowed to move. Is that so?

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. Now, item 4, just a detail. I see that you

5 really thought about every detail very carefully and

6 you said, "Until the time of morning prayer, the mosque

7 is changed. The police patrols shall allow worshippers

8 to attend prayer between ..." so-and-so.

9 A. Quite so. We went out of our way not to

10 deprive the Muslims from attending the morning prayer,

11 which is very important for them, and they could attend

12 the Sabah Namaz service every morning.

13 Q. And I see you also -- this was, or a copy of

14 this order, was also delivered to the Efendi Prolaz?

15 A. Correct.

16 Q. Next document, 266/1, another order of yours

17 to the police station in Busovaca to ensure guards

18 around the clock.

19 A. Yes. This is a civilian order to ensure the

20 guarding of the municipal hall, the PTT office, the

21 health centre, that is, buildings of vital interest.

22 Q. So we can agree that all these measures that

23 you are taking go in step with the increase of the

24 crime rate that you felt began to mount in November

25 1992?

Page 20094

1 A. Yes. I need to say here that when the

2 expelled, when the displaced persons arrived from these

3 other territories, that at that time the situation

4 deteriorated. As for the law and order, or rather an

5 increase of the crime rate in the territory of the

6 municipality of Busovaca, because people lacked means

7 of livelihood and they were trying to somehow fend for

8 themselves in all other ways, and I tried to make some

9 law and order there as far as it was possible.

10 Q. The next document is also interesting because

11 it reflects the state of affairs. It's D267/1, of the

12 24th of November, 1992. You say that the police

13 station in Busovaca is told to control also schools and

14 to search pupils carrying firearms and arms.

15 A. Yes, indeed, because a very grave problem

16 arose at the time. We observed that even children had

17 some type of ammunition. They began to bring it to

18 school. And there was a boy even who brought a pistol

19 to the school, so that --

20 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Mr. Maric, I

21 think that you simply need to confirm the orders we are

22 speaking of, just by answering Mr. Naumovski's

23 question, without really giving us the details of each

24 particular order. Thank you.

25 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Thank you,

Page 20095

1 Your Honour.

2 Q. Mr. Maric, very briefly, to just go through

3 these few documents which remain. D268/1, this

4 document, if we look at its contents, could fall into

5 that first set of documents. It is dated 25th

6 November, 1992. And in your capacity as the acting

7 mayor of the municipality, that is, president of the

8 HVO government, you take the decision to allow --

9 entitling Mr. Edim Muminovic to an amount of 300 German

10 marks as damages after an explosive was planted at a

11 kiosk on 2nd November, 1992. This was one of the first

12 outlets which were damaged, and you decided to help the

13 man in some way?

14 A. Yes. I decided that the man should be

15 helped.

16 Q. And 269/1, this is your press release of the

17 8th of December, 1992, which bears on the meeting of

18 HVO representatives in Busovaca with a representative

19 of the Dutch -- UNPROFOR Dutch unit which was stationed

20 there, Mr. De Bur. This document is self-explanatory.

21 However, paragraph 3, the third passage, is

22 interesting. You insisted -- you urged Mr. De Bur to

23 ask through the commander of the UNPROFOR British

24 commander to meet with senior representatives of the

25 HVO and the BH army in order to define the routes and

Page 20096

1 manner of securing humanitarian aid transports and

2 avoid any possible misunderstanding. Evidently you

3 were beginning to have some misgivings about them at

4 the time?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. Very well. We can move on to the next

7 document, 270/1. 14th December 1992. I do not think

8 we have to go through it. This is again control of the

9 pupils, once again an appeal to the police.

10 A. Yes.

11 Q. Thank you. D271/1 is a document of the 17th

12 of June, 1993. Item 2 says -- we don't have to go

13 through this document passage by passage, but it has to

14 do with refugees and displaced. But that a commission

15 was set up which allowed those inhabitants who wanted

16 to leave Busovaca and -- it says, I suppose this is

17 your signature down here. We do not have the whole

18 document. The end of the page is missing. Do you

19 remember this?

20 A. Yes, I remember. This is my document.

21 Q. So in item 3 you're asking the high commander

22 of HVO brigades in Busovaca to issue an order

23 forbidding soldiers to move refugees into anybody's

24 houses on their own initiative, and especially not into

25 Muslim houses?

Page 20097

1 A. Yes, quite so. This is my document.

2 Q. So this is an attempt of the civilian HVO

3 authority in Busovaca to protect the local population

4 to the maximum possible extent.

5 A. Quite so.

6 Q. Another document in this group, D272/1, of

7 the 21st of June, 1993. This document is

8 self-explanatory, but item 1 is important because in

9 item 1 of this decision, you prohibit the moving out of

10 Muslim families from their homes and the moving in of

11 refugees and displaced persons.

12 A. Yes. This is my document of the 21st of

13 June, 1993 in which the persons from -- that is,

14 persons displaced from Zenica tried to move into Muslim

15 houses in Busovaca, and I prohibited this.

16 Q. Thank you. We can move on. You also said

17 when Judge Bennouna asked you, you were asked until

18 when did the cooperation last, but it was as late as

19 the 22nd of January, 1993 that you were still

20 distributing food which you were receiving from

21 different humanitarian sources from outside the

22 Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina and which arrived in

23 Busovaca through the territory of the Republic of

24 Croatia.

25 A. Yes. It was some 30 tonnes of food and other

Page 20098

1 aid. Yes, we had obtained food from the Republic of

2 Croatia, and we then distributed it 50/50; that is,

3 half went to Croats and half went to Bosniaks/Muslims,

4 and the remaining Serbs there. So we distributed it

5 equitably and each group distributed it amongst their

6 own population. So that Muslims received 30 tonnes of

7 food on the eve of the conflict; that is, they received

8 it on a Friday and the conflict broke out on Monday.

9 Q. So it was on the eve of the conflict.

10 A. Yes, it was on the eve of the conflict.

11 Q. Shortly after this food distribution, you and

12 Niko Grubesic were invited by Mr. Husein Hadzimejlic to

13 the barracks of the BH army at Kacuni.

14 A. Yes. The BH army were quartered in Kacuni,

15 and we went there and we talked because we did not

16 expect -- we could not anticipate the incident which

17 then took place later.

18 Q. What did the barracks look like? Was it

19 already prepared to accommodate a large number of

20 soldiers?

21 A. Yes, it was organised so as to accommodate a

22 considerable number of soldiers.

23 Q. Mr. Maric, you communicated with

24 Mr. Hadzimejlic on various occasions. Do you recall

25 if, in late 1992 and early 1993, he told you something

Page 20099

1 about the possibility of controlling radical Muslim

2 soldiers who had arrived in Kacuni from somewhere?

3 A. I can say quite frankly that Mr. Hadzimejlic,

4 who is a wonderful man, who was brought up on religious

5 principles, he always communicated with me and did what

6 he could to ensure good terms, good relations between

7 Croats and Muslims. But with the arrival of displaced

8 persons, especially from Krajina, who were accommodated

9 in the territory of Kacuni and who were, as he put it

10 at times, somewhat bold, right before the conflict

11 broke out he said to me, "Mr. Maric, I can hardly give

12 them any order at all." That is, the situation was

13 very difficult and he simply couldn't keep them under

14 control.

15 Q. But before that, and we are referring to

16 paragraph 34, in mid-January 1993, on the 15th, you had

17 a meeting with Dzemal Merdan.

18 A. Yes, I also had a meeting with Mr. Dzemal

19 Merdan, and an incident then took place in the

20 territory of Kacuni, when a transport -- when a truck

21 with a machine-gun mounted on it patrolled Busovaca and

22 it was stopped at Kacuni. They tried to capture, to

23 seize, this APC, and I asked them to release it, to

24 somehow bring down the tension in order to avoid an

25 incident.

Page 20100

1 Q. Very well. Thank you. Tell us, please,

2 prior to the 25th of January, 1993, when the conflict

3 broke out, that is, a few days before that, do you

4 perhaps recall any other incident at Kacuni?

5 A. Yes. There was sporadic gunfire from the

6 Muslim side. There was a quarrel, an altercation, in a

7 village near Kacuni with a predominantly Croat

8 population, and there a kind of a skirmish, I would

9 say, a kind of argument took place.

10 Q. Do you know about an incident when somebody

11 was stopped at Kacuni? In those days, before the 25th

12 of January.

13 A. On the 21st, I believe, of January, Mr. Ignac

14 Kostroman was stopped at the checkpoint at Kacuni and

15 Mr. Ignac Kostroman was threatened, as far as what I

16 know about the whole matter.

17 Q. Who is it that told you about that? Who

18 informed you about it?

19 A. I received the report from the chief of

20 police.

21 Q. In the series of incidents, this was just an

22 additional event which did not improve anything. But

23 in those days, were some premises also damaged in the

24 town of Busovaca?

25 A. Unfortunately these acts of provocation from

Page 20101

1 the Bosnian side reflected on the Croats too who blew

2 up certain premises.

3 Q. Do you know any details about it or were you

4 informed about it as the president of the government,

5 that things like that happened?

6 A. Yes. I received reports from the police that

7 some restaurants and other business premises were blown

8 up.

9 Q. In your outline you also mention that you had

10 some information about the killing of Mirsad Delija, a

11 citizen of Busovaca.

12 A. Yes. Unfortunately that also took place, and

13 this was unfortunately the first victim of these

14 incidents.

15 Q. Again, you received the police report about

16 it?

17 A. Yes, and then an investigation was ordered to

18 be launched.

19 Q. In your outline you already mentioned the 24

20 January incident, we can skip that, but we can move on

21 to January 25, 1993. You were at home in the village

22 of Podjele that day.

23 A. Yes. That day and until 1998, I continued to

24 live in Podjele. That day I was at home, and at 5.35

25 a.m. I was awakened by the shelling from the

Page 20102

1 direction -- and the shells were coming from the

2 direction of Merdani and hitting Busovaca. That is

3 when the actual attack started.

4 Then I went from my home to my uncle's home

5 and I spent the day in the shelter. I couldn't get out

6 because from the side of Strane, that is, to the north

7 of where I was, I was the target of snipers, so I could

8 not move and go to Busovaca. So I spent that day at

9 home.

10 On the 26th, in the morning, early, I left

11 Podjele with my wife and two children and we moved to

12 the area of Ravne, which is about 2.5 kilometres south

13 of Busovaca, and I stayed there until June 1994, that

14 is, the end of the conflict.

15 Q. On 26 January, when you came to the outskirts

16 of Busovaca, I assume that you learned what had

17 happened the day before, that there was a conflict, and

18 you received the report of what had happened?

19 A. Yes, I received the report. There was

20 terrible fighting, that the town of Busovaca was

21 shelled from all sides, that there were casualties.

22 That day, together with Mr. Niko Grubesic, my secretary

23 tried to organise whatever we could to take care of the

24 wounded and others who suffered under the attack.

25 Q. You also heard whether, on that day, some

Page 20103

1 Muslims were arrested or captured in the town of

2 Busovaca, in the afternoon hours.

3 A. Yes, I also received a report that those who

4 were able-bodied were taken to Kaonik, to the prison,

5 for security. It was also reported to me that some

6 documents were found which showed that a neighbour --

7 according to which, some of them were supposed to kill

8 their fellow Croat neighbours, let's say, educated

9 Croats.

10 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation]

11 Mr. Naumovski, I would like to ask Mr. Maric, because

12 he said that he learned that the 100 Muslims were

13 arrested and taken to Kaonik, Mr. Maric, if you were in

14 charge of the HVO government of the municipality, how

15 come you were not informed about this decision?

16 A. I was in my village; that was at Kaonik. I

17 didn't have a phone line. The war raged on that whole

18 day. I was blocked in my house; I could not leave.

19 Until I arrived in Busovaca, I had no information about

20 what had happened.

21 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Who decided

22 to arrest those people, in your opinion?

23 A. In my view, it was the military, that is, the

24 military side of the HVO which was conducting the

25 operation at the time, so that this was done by the

Page 20104

1 military police.

2 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Didn't the

3 military police depend upon your authority, Mr. Maric?

4 A. It was under my authority until the beginning

5 of hostilities.

6 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Thank you.

7 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation]

8 Q. A detail, Mr. Maric, just to wrap up this

9 topic. If I understood you correctly, lists of Croats

10 who were to be eliminated were found with certain

11 Muslims.

12 A. Yes, that is exactly what I said. With the

13 Muslims who were with the Territorial Defence, we found

14 documents which testified to the fact that they were

15 tasked with killing Croats.

16 Q. Who had authority over Kaonik, your

17 government or the military side of the HVO?

18 A. The Kaonik prison was supposed to be under

19 civilian jurisdiction because it was set up for the

20 common criminals, the perpetrators of common crimes, so

21 to speak. But due to the war situation, it was

22 converted into a military prison because the civilian

23 authorities practically could not operate.

24 Q. So you're saying that the civilian

25 authorities stopped having jurisdiction over it.

Page 20105

1 A. Yes. You know that in times of war the

2 military takes over.

3 Q. I was just waiting for the interpretation.

4 Now, could you tell the Trial Chamber, you

5 had an opportunity to see statistics of those killed

6 and houses and property destroyed. Could you tell us,

7 how many Croats were killed in that conflict, the

8 January conflict?

9 A. I believe it was 50 to 58. There were five

10 women among them; I remember that well. Over 170

11 Croatian houses were destroyed in the areas of Kacuni,

12 the local commune of Kacuni, Oseliste, Gusti Grab, and

13 outlying areas towards Kiseljak. Obviously there were

14 Bosniak houses which were destroyed in the outlying

15 areas and in Busovaca town.

16 Q. In the outlying areas, you say that about 70

17 Muslim houses were damaged in the area controlled by

18 the HVO.

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. Another detail. Do you know how many Croats

21 were driven out of the territory controlled by the ABiH

22 to the territory controlled by you?

23 A. The area of Kacuni and the southern part

24 towards Zenica, that is, Putis, about 250 Croats were

25 expelled from that area.

Page 20106

1 Q. We will speed up to paragraph 39. After

2 January 1993 an agreement was signed, the hostilities

3 ceased, and you tried to organise everyday life between

4 February and April 1993; is that correct?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. You had an agreement. This was one of the

7 conditions for the signing of the ceasefire agreement

8 after the January conflict: that all the trenches would

9 be covered by both sides.

10 A. Yes. There was an agreement to cover all

11 trenches in Busovaca municipality by both sides, by the

12 HVO and by the TO. However, unfortunately we filled in

13 ours but the Bosniaks kept on digging new ones.

14 Q. Do you also have information how many houses

15 owned by Croats were damaged in parts of Busovaca

16 patrolled by the ABiH during this period between

17 February and April 1993?

18 A. There were quite a few. I think around 180,

19 maybe over 180. I cannot recall right now, but there

20 were a number of damaged properties.

21 Q. We talked quite a bit about crime, and crime

22 continued to increase. There were some murders of

23 Muslims in that period.

24 A. Unfortunately, there were some murders too.

25 Q. You knew Ibrahim Hodzic, who was the official

Page 20107

1 with the civilian protection; he worked in that

2 office. And he was killed. Were you able to identify

3 the criminals who had attacked him?

4 A. I ordered the inventory of the damaged houses

5 to be produced, and he was a member of this

6 commission. And while this commission was doing its

7 work, he was accosted by some soldiers. He was

8 threatened. And he came to me and he said, "President,

9 what shall I do now?" I said, "Mr. Hodzic, do not go

10 anywhere anymore. Stay away. You see what we have.

11 It's a war. And you see I just received a report that

12 this person's brother was killed." And unfortunately,

13 that same night he was again mistreated, and I then

14 found out that the next day he died from his injuries.

15 Q. Sir, if it was determined that perpetrators

16 of a certain crime were wearing uniforms, who would

17 have been in charge of an investigation to determine

18 their identity?

19 A. It would have been the military police.

20 Q. From this I conclude that the civilian police

21 had no authority over the military personnel.

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. Did the civilian police have enough

24 personnel? Was it fully staffed in 1993 in order to be

25 able to prevent and prosecute criminals?

Page 20108

1 A. Unfortunately, we did not have enough

2 civilian police officers, nor did we have enough funds

3 to be able to work on crime prevention. These were

4 very difficult times.

5 Q. And the last question on this topic of

6 crime: We agreed that the Muslims were a target of

7 criminals, but also were others, Serbs, Montenegrins

8 and everybody else?

9 A. Unfortunately, yes, and I personally was a

10 victim of these events.

11 Q. Let's move on to the next topic. This is

12 April 1993. According to you, when did the conflict in

13 April start, in April of 1993, and where in Busovaca?

14 A. The conflict in Busovaca started in Busovaca

15 Kuber, that is, due north, towards Zenica. Then it

16 spread to the east, that is, via Merdani, and then to

17 the north-west, north-east, so that the problems sprang

18 up everywhere and the fighting started everywhere.

19 Q. You said -- what date was this?

20 A. It was the 15th of April.

21 Q. Was it 1993?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. Kuber is a very strategic feature?

24 A. Yes, it is strategically a very important

25 feature. It divides Busovaca and Zenica, and actually

Page 20109

1 also Vitez. It separates these three communities.

2 Q. Did you have any ideas about whether fighting

3 was also going on -- how shall I put it? -- along the

4 road towards Zenica?

5 A. As I said, it started at Kuber and it went

6 eastward, to the east and south, and north and west,

7 that is, towards Vitez. Because this feature is

8 situated in such a way. It is very prominent.

9 Q. You may have heard in those days that there

10 was also fighting around Ahmici, Santici and other

11 villages along the main road to Vitez.

12 A. Yes. Later on I learned that in the areas of

13 Ahmici and alongside the road, there was heavy

14 fighting.

15 Q. At that time, after the beginning of April

16 conflict, a large number of Croats left Zenica. What

17 was your estimate as the president of the municipality

18 in Busovaca? How many Zenica Croats had left?

19 A. A large number of Croats left. About 5.000

20 came to the Busovaca municipality. They were also

21 leaving the Zenica area in the direction of Vitez and

22 Travnik, but they arrived in large numbers.

23 Q. Those 5.000 of the total number of Zenica

24 Croats arrived in Busovaca?

25 A. Yes.

Page 20110

1 Q. Do you know what is the total number of those

2 who left Zenica?

3 A. Over 20.000.

4 Q. Can you tell me, from April 1993 till March

5 1994, was the town of Busovaca, controlled by the HVO,

6 shelled?

7 A. Regrettably, Busovaca was shelled almost

8 constantly. The situation was very difficult. Large

9 Muslim forces were pushing into the Busovaca

10 municipality. The ratio was 10:1. We had only 2.000

11 able-bodied defenders. And I need to mention that in

12 the course of the combat operations, there were a

13 couple of thousand of Mujahedin who were active, 7.000

14 Mujahedin who were active in this area.

15 Q. In respect of the fighting between April and

16 June -- and June is important here because a large

17 number of Travnik refugees arrived in Busovaca -- how

18 many came to Busovaca area?

19 A. A significant number of them arrived in

20 Busovaca, and almost every family had to take in

21 another displaced family.

22 Q. This last large wave of refugees must have

23 added pressure on the local population. Do you

24 remember an order which you co-signed with Mr. Kordic

25 in which you ordered anyone not to disturb property of

Page 20111

1 citizens of Busovaca, regardless of ethnic origin?

2 A. Yes. As the president of the municipality of

3 Busovaca, I co-signed an order with Dusko Grubesic, who

4 was the local commander, and Dario Kordic, a person who

5 everybody trusted in the Busovaca municipality, so that

6 we would prevent mistreatment of the Muslim population

7 and expulsion from their homes.

8 We attempted to have people continue to live

9 in Busovaca in the conditions which we all shared at

10 the time, which were very difficult. Unfortunately,

11 with the arrival of these refugees, the situation

12 became very complicated and worsened from day to day.

13 The food stocks were running out, the fuel was running

14 out, and the winter was approaching. There were all

15 kinds of things going on there, and it was very hard on

16 all of us. It is something that you cannot retell; you

17 have to experience it.

18 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Thank you

19 very much. Mr. Naumovski, could you now go on to the

20 next line of questioning, because you need to finish

21 with your direct examination this afternoon. Please,

22 could you do so as to finish this afternoon, before the

23 end of this session.

24 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] I will do my

25 best, Your Honour; however, I need to ask one question

Page 20112

1 in respect of the refugees.

2 Q. You personally were also exposed to the --

3 you had personal contacts with those who were

4 mistreated, and what were these people telling you?

5 A. I have to say that I would talk to people,

6 with Croats who were evicting Muslims from their

7 homes. He said, "Sir, I was expelled by Muslims. I

8 have nowhere to go." This was a sad thing. I tried to

9 help, but it was very difficult to do so, because

10 everybody was -- everybody felt threatened, and only

11 those who went through it could understand it.

12 Q. Mr. Maric, let's move on. As the president

13 of the HVO government in -- during most of the period

14 that is pertinent here, you're the right person to ask

15 this question. Did the civilian HVO government or the

16 HDZ in Busovaca, or any other Croat body, conduct a

17 policy of persecution of Muslims in the Lasva Valley?

18 A. It never even crossed our minds, let alone

19 did we persecute and expel other residents from our

20 municipality. We lived in peace. But it is painful to

21 say this. I have to say: We wanted to live together,

22 and today, thank God, we are rebuilding this

23 federation, and I hope we will rebuild it.

24 Q. Thank you. As the president of the

25 government and a representative of the civilian

Page 20113

1 government, did you ever receive any order,

2 instruction, advice, from anyone from the civilian or

3 military components of the HVO to persecute Muslims or

4 any other ethnic group?

5 A. No. I never received such a thing from

6 anyone, because the HDZ and the HVO were not the ones

7 who persecuted anyone, at least not the leadership. We

8 had thousands and thousands of meetings and put in all

9 efforts to keep people there and to avoid the

10 incidents; however, certain extremists did more than we

11 all thought possible.

12 Q. You mentioned the ratio of forces and the

13 fact that you defended yourself in Lasva Valley.

14 Perhaps just one fact. In February 1993 you also cared

15 for thousands of refugees who were Muslim, who came

16 from various other areas?

17 A. Yes. You should know that we took care of

18 everyone. We shared everything to the last.

19 Q. I just am pointing to this fact. I am

20 trying -- we are pressed for time. Do you just agree

21 with this fact?

22 A. Yes, I do.

23 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Paragraph 44,

24 Your Honours, just a couple of questions on Mr. Kordic.

25 Q. You have known Dario Kordic since the school

Page 20114

1 days?

2 A. Yes. I have known Mr. Kordic since school

3 days. I am his senior. I went to high school in

4 Travnik and he went to Vitez. We commuted together. I

5 knew him. He was a very correct, a very educated man,

6 who wanted to help everyone, an ambitious man, and he

7 trusted people and people held him in high regard.

8 Q. You cooperated with him from 1990 to 1995,

9 when Mr. Kordic went to take another duty in Mostar?

10 A. Yes.

11 Q. You said that Mr. Kordic was very popular

12 among people, that he achieved a certain reputation,

13 that he excelled, especially when he became involved in

14 the defence, that is, when he tried to prevent the

15 convoys of weapons from leaving for the JNA. That was

16 in late 1990.

17 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Please, do

18 not lead too much your witness when it comes to the

19 questions about the accused, Mr. Naumovski, please.

20 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Very well,

21 Your Honour, I won't.

22 Q. When it comes to the defence against Serbs,

23 you, in Busovaca, in the Lasva Valley, what did you

24 think? What particular hill feature had to be defended

25 in order to defend the Lasva Valley?

Page 20115

1 A. We were saying that the territory of the

2 municipality of Jajce needs to be defended by Croats

3 and Muslims at all costs, because that was the point.

4 If you want to have a way out, the territories of

5 Kupres, the jugular vein between the Republic of Bosnia

6 with the coast, had been taken over on the sly, and we

7 tried to defend Travnik, the municipality of Travnik,

8 and we did our best to prevent it. But unfortunately,

9 the worst happened.

10 Q. When you spoke about Mr. Kordic's role while

11 he worked in the municipal government as the man

12 responsible for national defence, when he prevented

13 young, not only Croats, but also Muslims, from joining

14 the JNA, and parents were so grateful to him, tell us,

15 did that territory, that is, your territory, the

16 territory of the Lasva Valley, did it have to be

17 defended jointly by the Croats and the Muslims, or did

18 Mr. Kordic perhaps have some other idea?

19 A. We were trying, and Mr. Kordic always talked

20 to Bosniak representatives that the concept of defence

21 against the Serbs should be devised jointly.

22 Unfortunately, Jajce fell, conflicts began against

23 Croats too, and then things unfolded as they did.

24 Q. Paragraph 46. In 1993, when the war

25 escalated and when Busovaca was surrounded, that is,

Page 20116

1 the whole Lasva Valley, if I may put it that way, what

2 role did Mr. Kordic assume? How did you see that?

3 A. Mr. Kordic was a politician. He was a

4 politician all the time.

5 Q. At that time who did he communicate with on

6 your behalf?

7 A. In the beginning he communicated with every

8 man, and especially later he communicated with the

9 representatives of the International Community and

10 through them he sought help, insisting that

11 humanitarian relief be brought to this region, to these

12 lands.

13 I say "region." I'm the president of the

14 canton and I always go back to that because my canton

15 spreads from Jajce to Kresevo, 12 municipalities, and

16 that is what I consider "these lands."

17 Q. Mr. Maric, you also attended a certain number

18 of press conferences; some of them took place in the

19 Busovaca municipal hall where you worked. You heard

20 Mr. Kordic at those press conferences take the floor.

21 What did he speak about?

22 A. He informed the public about the developments

23 in the lands of this region.

24 Q. Mr. Maric, have you ever heard Mr. Kordic, in

25 any public or private address, invite violence against

Page 20117

1 Muslims, or any other ethnic group?

2 A. No. Quite the reverse. He always said we

3 must present a united front and fight for the unity of

4 Bosnia-Herzegovina. I remember that well.

5 Q. Did you ever hear him use derogatory language

6 in addressing another people?

7 A. No, never. He always wanted to help

8 everybody.

9 Q. Mr. Maric, you are aware of a protest rally

10 organised by Muslims in Busovaca in late May 1992 in

11 front of the fire brigade centre in Busovaca. At that

12 time you were with Mr. Kordic at a meeting. What was

13 his reaction to that? Was he angry?

14 A. He was not angry at all. We believed that

15 everybody had the right. We are democrats and we

16 wanted everybody to make his protest public.

17 Q. The Prosecution asserted that Mr. Kordic

18 reacted vehemently, that he wanted to take measures

19 against those people; is that true?

20 A. That is not true.

21 Q. Is it true that somebody seized a Muslim flag

22 and committed some outrage upon it?

23 A. No, that is not true.

24 Q. Tell us, please, to the best of your

25 knowledge and conviction, as the president of the HVO

Page 20118

1 government in those hard times, did Mr. Kordic

2 discharge any military duties? Did you ever hear him

3 issue any military order?

4 A. I said that Mr. Kordic was a politician, and

5 that is what he was throughout.

6 Q. Today we also spoke about the time when there

7 was no clear distinction drawn between the

8 civilian/military components of the HVO. Tell us,

9 please, following the summer of 1992, who became the

10 military commander throughout the area?

11 A. Of Herceg-Bosna, that is, throughout the

12 territory of Herceg-Bosna, the commander in chief of

13 all the forces was the president of Herceg-Bosna, that

14 is, Mr. Mate Boban. But as the government was active

15 at that time --

16 Q. Very well. I wanted to speak about the

17 Operative Zone of Central Bosnia. Who was its

18 commander as of 1993 onward?

19 A. The commander of the Operative Zone of

20 Central Bosnia was Colonel Tihomir Blaskic.

21 Q. In December 1992, the Nikola Subic-Zrinjski

22 Brigade was formed in Busovaca. Who were its

23 commanders, briefly?

24 A. In the beginning, its commander, that is,

25 when the brigade was founded, then it was Mr. Ivo

Page 20119

1 Brnada. But the brigade was set up by Mr. Jozinovic

2 and the commander of the brigade was Mr. Dusko

3 Grubesic, and he was succeeded by Mr. Jure Cavara.

4 Q. Did you ever hear about Mr. Kordic having

5 supposedly some role in the chain of command of that

6 brigade?

7 A. No, never.

8 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Just two

9 brief questions, if I may, Your Honours, and then we

10 shall finish.

11 Q. Do you know that at different times in 1993

12 telephone lines of Muslims in Busovaca were cut off?

13 A. I must say that in 1993, the system, as I

14 told you before, in the municipality of Busovaca was in

15 the Zenica region; it was under the jurisdiction of the

16 Zenica PTT. So all the lines were blocked, not only

17 those of the Croats -- not only those of the Muslims

18 but of the Croats and the Serbs. All the telephones

19 were cut off.

20 We were under a very heavy blockade and we

21 managed to establish a line to Split. We had a Split

22 number, and that was how we maintained communication

23 with the rest of the world. It was very difficult for

24 us because everybody had to come to my office to talk

25 if he needed to talk to anyone.

Page 20120

1 Q. That is, that line was in your office, was

2 it?

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. Busovaca was not the only place affected by

5 the destruction of telephone lines. Did you hear

6 something about other towns? How did other towns make

7 similar deals with the Croatian post office?

8 A. Yes, and that is how it happened in the

9 municipality of Vitez, and Travnik also established

10 those telephone links.

11 You should also need to know the following:

12 As of the 25th of January, 1993, Busovaca was

13 completely cut off as for the traffic, as for the

14 transportation; that is, no truck, no lorry, could

15 leave the territory of the municipality of Busovaca to

16 go through the territories of other municipalities.

17 Q. Mr. Maric, we are not experts on

18 telecommunications, and I doubt that you are one, but

19 just to draw the full picture of it. If you had a fax,

20 would that fax, the copy of this fax, show that Split

21 number through which it went?

22 A. Yes. The Split number.

23 Q. In Busovaca, I mean.

24 A. Yes, in Busovaca. "057," if I remember

25 well.

Page 20121

1 Q. The last subject, paragraph 50, Mr. Maric.

2 In late March 1993, you received in your Busovaca

3 office, you received Efendi Enver Prolaz, the Busovaca

4 imam.

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. Do you remember at whose initiative that was

7 organised?

8 A. Mr. Enver Prolaz, the imam who lived in

9 Busovaca, called me by telephone and asked to see me,

10 and I made it possible for him to come and see me. At

11 first he was quite frightened, he was afraid something

12 might happen to him, but I reassured him and told him,

13 "You can come. Don't worry. Nothing will happen to

14 you." And he came and asked for the permission to

15 leave the territory of the municipality of Busovaca,

16 that is, he and his family. I thought about this man

17 who helped Muslims, Bosniaks, who had stayed behind,

18 whether I should allow him to leave. I thought about

19 it and then I told him, "Mr. Prolaz, yes, you'll be

20 able to leave."

21 I also know about the Prosecutor's allegation

22 that I requested the authority from Mr. Kordic to do

23 that. No. I allowed him to leave and he left. I was

24 the one who let him leave to Zenica, and he left.

25 Q. So it was your personal decision and you did

Page 20122

1 not consult anyone about this.

2 A. No, I did not consult anyone. It was a

3 decision that was taken by me.

4 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] I would

5 merely like to adduce two more documents. We do not

6 have to comment on them. I only want Mr. Maric to

7 confirm that they are his, and that will be it. They

8 are these last two documents, D273/1 and D274/1.

9 Q. Mr. Maric, this is the first contract that

10 you signed with UNPROFOR, on a lease of the state, and

11 the second document, of 18 August 1993, is an open

12 letter that you sent to international humanitarian

13 organisations and the domestic and foreign public about

14 the difficult situation in Busovaca.

15 A. This is one of the letters. I sent it to the

16 entire world, Europe, seeking help, seeking assistance

17 for peoples in Bosnia-Herzegovina, especially in those

18 areas where those things were happening, as in our

19 territory.

20 Q. Thank you. There is no need to -- I

21 apologise for cutting in. Thank you, Mr. Maric, for

22 your answers.

23 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Thank you,

24 Your Honours, for your patience. I have no further

25 questions.

Page 20123

1 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Thank you

2 very much, Mr. Naumovski. Let's organise ourselves for

3 tomorrow.

4 I do not know whether you, Mr. Kovacic, would

5 like to cross-examine Mr. Maric.

6 MR. KOVACIC: Yes, Your Honour, I would have

7 some questions of this witness. Not too much, but

8 perhaps 15, 20 minutes maybe.

9 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Thank you

10 very much.

11 Now I turn myself to Mr. Nice. How much time

12 do you think that the cross-examination will last?

13 MR. NICE: It's hard to tell. It's unlikely

14 to be accommodated within the morning. There's a very

15 great deal of material. Much of it is entirely fresh

16 to me today; a lot of it came fresh at the beginning of

17 the week when we first saw the summary. I think it's

18 highly unlikely I will finish him tomorrow.

19 The Chamber can be heartened by the knowledge

20 that the original timetable, which was only changed, I

21 think, at the beginning of the week or the end of last

22 week, was that he would, in any event, start on Friday

23 and finish on Monday.

24 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation]

25 Mr. Naumovski.

Page 20124

1 MR. NAUMOVSKI: [Interpretation] Your Honours,

2 I only wanted to seek your help. Mr. Maric has been

3 here for the whole week, and I'm afraid -- if perhaps

4 we could work a little longer tomorrow. It would be

5 very difficult for him to stay until Monday because he

6 told us he should get back to his office. We really

7 have a problem there.

8 [Trial Chamber confers]

9 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Mr. Nice, my

10 colleague Judge Robinson and myself, we know that

11 Mr. Maric needs to leave because he has got many

12 responsibilities and he should probably not stay here

13 over the weekend. We also do know that you have quite

14 a large number of issues and a large number of

15 questions in cross-examination. So we would like to

16 ask you to do your utmost in order to be able to finish

17 tomorrow with the cross-examination of this witness.

18 When it comes to our schedule, I think that

19 we could continue tomorrow afternoon if need be. Maybe

20 we could work for another hour and a half tomorrow

21 afternoon so that the cross-examination could be

22 completed.

23 MR. NICE: I will do everything I can. I was

24 wrong in saying that he was originally scheduled for

25 Friday and Monday. I think he was originally scheduled

Page 20125

1 for Monday and Tuesday; that was the original plan.

2 I'll do everything I can, of course, to

3 accommodate the Chamber. The Chamber should also have

4 in mind that there are five affidavits allegedly

5 supporting this witness, and of course I have to deal

6 with those as well as with his testimony under the

7 Rules that are applied. But I'll do my best.

8 Can I respectfully remind the Court to warn

9 the witness in the normal way.

10 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] I don't

11 think that there are any problems for the affidavits,

12 and in accordance with our practice, we could leave the

13 affidavits for next week.

14 So we agree that Mr. Kovacic can

15 cross-examine Mr. Maric tomorrow for about 15 to 20

16 minutes, and then the Prosecutor should organise

17 himself to complete the cross-examination, in which

18 case I think that he would be given exactly the same

19 time as the Defence had which seems to be very fair.

20 So Mr. Maric could leave here before the weekend.

21 Mr. Nice, did you want to add something?

22 MR. NICE: No. I was standing so that you

23 had somebody to address, principally. But what I would

24 add is that I think Your Honour missed my point about

25 the affidavits.

Page 20126

1 The point that is being made by the Defence

2 regularly is that the reason affidavits have to be

3 served before the supported witness gives his evidence

4 is so that cross-examination relating to the affidavits

5 may be put through that witness, and therefore that

6 necessarily may extend the time.

7 Your Honour, all I can say is I will do, of

8 course, my best and I would hope not to detain this

9 witness, or even seek to do so, beyond tomorrow. But I

10 can't know until I see how things unfold.

11 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Thank you

12 very much. As far as the affidavits are concerned, I

13 do understand that you should see them in order to see

14 how much you have to cross-examine this witness. And

15 in view of the objections that might be raised, one

16 should be able to ask the authors of these affidavits.

17 In case you can't do it, the Chamber will have to make

18 the final decision.

19 Mr. Maric, as far as you are concerned, you

20 should be back here tomorrow morning at 9.30. I would

21 like to remind you the rule of the Tribunal. I remind

22 you that you are still under oath and that you should

23 not speak with anyone about your statement here. You

24 should not speak with the Defence team either. So you

25 will start again at 9.30 with your cross-examination.

Page 20127

1 We hope that the cross-examination will be completed by

2 the end of tomorrow and that you will be free for the

3 weekend.

4 So now we are going to adjourn until tomorrow

5 morning, 9.30.

6 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned

7 at 4.25 p.m., to be reconvened on

8 Friday the 2nd day of June, 2000,

9 at 9.30 a.m.