Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 4503

1 Friday, 23 June 2000

2 [Closed session]

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Page 4572

1 (redacted)

2 [The witness entered court]

3 [Open session]

4 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Good afternoon,

5 Witness. Can you hear me?

6 THE WITNESS: Yes, I can.

7 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] You may be seated for the

8 moment, please. Please sit down.

9 THE WITNESS: Thank you.

10 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Witness, please stand up. I

11 think you need to use the other microphone because -- there is facial

12 distortion, voice distortion?

13 MR. HARMON: No.

14 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] No. So you're going to read the

15 solemn declaration that the usher is going to give you, please.

16 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will speak the truth, the

17 whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

18 WITNESS: WITNESS BB

19 [Witness answered through interpreter]

20 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] You may be seated.

21 THE WITNESS: Thank you.

22 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Are you comfortable, Witness.

23 THE WITNESS: Yes. Thank you.

24 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] You're going to look at this

25 piece of paper and tell us, yes or no, is your name written on it?

Page 4573

1 THE WITNESS: No.

2 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] Very well. Let's see. Don't

3 tell us your name, please. One moment.

4 And now?

5 THE WITNESS: Yes, that is my name.

6 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] So finally. It is only a mere

7 formality, but we have to do it.

8 So you're now going to answer questions by Mr. Harmon is going to

9 put to you, please.

10 You have the floor, Mr. Harmon.

11 MR. HARMON: Thank you very much.

12 Examined by Mr. Harmon:

13 Q. Witness, I'm going to be referring to you as Witness BB. Good

14 afternoon, Witness BB.

15 A. Good afternoon.

16 Q. Can you tell us your nationality, please?

17 A. I'm of Bosniak nationality.

18 Q. And what is your religious faith?

19 A. Islam is my faith.

20 Q. Can you tell us your educational background starting, please,

21 first with your secondary school education?

22 A. My education was actually an occupation of the technician for

23 telecommunications, and I graduated from the corresponding secondary

24 school for such a profile.

25 Q. Could you tell us, please, the nature of the coursework. What was

Page 4574

1 it exactly that you studied, and in particular, could you tell us what you

2 studied in respect of radios and radio communications, please?

3 A. In connection with radio communications, I had a subject called

4 "Radio and Radio-Relay Devices"; then there was another subject or course

5 called "Multiplex Systems"; then a course in telegraphy; and subjects in

6 which you study the work of telephone exchanges.

7 Q. Did you graduate in 1984 with a degree in electronic

8 telecommunications?

9 A. I did.

10 Q. Did you go on to university?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. Did you study two years at university the subject matter of

13 electrotechnics?

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. Did you serve in the JNA?

16 A. Yes.

17 Q. Did any of your service in the JNA in 1984 and 1985 have to do

18 with telecommunications, or was it unrelated?

19 A. I did something that was unrelated to this.

20 Q. Now, Witness BB, could you tell us about your private interest in

21 radios? Did you have such an interest, and how did you pursue that

22 interest?

23 A. I developed an interest in radio early on, in elementary school,

24 and that is why I decided to enrol in a telecommunications secondary

25 school. Continuously I was engaged as an amateur in electronics,

Page 4575

1 repairing radio and TV sets or any other electronic devices, or assembling

2 them myself.

3 Q. Witness BB, did you maintain that interest in radios up to the

4 time of the commencement of the war in Bosnia?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. Let's focus our attention on the war in Bosnia and let me ask you,

7 in October of 1992, did you join an anti-electronic warfare unit?

8 A. I did.

9 Q. Did you remain in that unit until the end of the war?

10 A. Yes.

11 Q. Now, while you were engaged in that kind of activity, were you

12 stationed at various locations in eastern Bosnia?

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. Could you identify by name those locations, please?

15 A. I can. Konjuh, Okresanica, the 2nd Corps command, Par Selo, and

16 some other locations.

17 MR. HARMON: Could I have Prosecutor's Exhibit 138 placed on the

18 ELMO, please.

19 Q. While that's being placed on the ELMO, Witness BB, can you tell us

20 the time periods when you were stationed at Okresanica?

21 A. I was at Okresanica on several occasions. For the last time I

22 arrived in May 1995, and I stayed until the end of the war.

23 Q. Now, to your left, Witness BB, is a map. Could you just point

24 out, please, the locations where you were stationed, starting with

25 Okresanica, please, and then point to the location of Konjuh where you

Page 4576

1 were also stationed.

2 A. This is Okresanica; this is Konjuh.

3 Q. Thank you very much.

4 MR. HARMON: For the record, the witness has pointed first to the

5 green dot on the left-hand side of Prosecutor's Exhibit 138 with the word

6 "Okresanica" next to it, and he next pointed to the green dot below it

7 that has "Konjuh" written alongside it.

8 Q. Witness BB, when you were at Okresanica and Konjuh, whose

9 communications were you intercepting?

10 A. I was intercepting the communications of the army of Republika

11 Srpska.

12 Q. Let's narrow down the focus of this examination a little more.

13 You said you were at Okresanica from May 1995 onward, and I'd like to

14 focus on that period of time, particularly the period of time in July of

15 1995.

16 First of all, what were your duties during that time period at

17 Okresanica?

18 A. I had two duties; first I worked as an operator and after that I

19 switched to work as an operator on encryption, as a signalsman.

20 Q. As an operator, briefly what did you do?

21 A. We monitored certain frequencies coming from certain directions.

22 When we would identify a conversation on that frequency, we would switch

23 on the recording of that conversation, and after that, when the

24 conversation ended, we would rewind the conversation, listen to it, take

25 it down in a notebook and hand it over to the signalsman operator.

Page 4577

1 Q. When you say you'd hand it over to the signalsman operator, that

2 was the individual who would type the entry in the notebook onto a

3 monitor, encrypt it and forward it on to the higher command; is that

4 correct?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. Now let's focus on your role as the person who would encrypt these

7 messages from the notebooks and forward them on to your higher command,

8 because that's the position you also held, isn't it?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. As I understand the procedure, and as the Judges have heard from

11 other witnesses, a notebook would be given to the person whose obligation

12 it was to type exactly the contents from the notebook onto the monitor.

13 Is that specifically what the obligation was and what you did?

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. As an individual who did this encryption and typing work, was

16 there ever an occasion when you had to relisten to a tape, or you

17 requested that the intercept operator who had presented you with the

18 notebook relisten to the tape?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. When did that happen and under what circumstances did that

21 happen?

22 A. If I would note any irregularities in the text I received,

23 anything that was not logical, I would ask the operator who transcribed it

24 to explain it to me, and what would most often happen would be that the

25 tape would be relistened to.

Page 4578

1 Q. And who would relisten to the tape?

2 A. The operator who originally took it down or another operator, but

3 most frequently several persons. Sometimes I was one of them.

4 Q. And if there were changes that were made or heard on a

5 relistening, how would those be communicated to you as the person who had

6 to forward the message on to the higher command?

7 A. I would enter the changes into the monitor. I would type in those

8 changes which had been identified and then encode it and send it to the

9 higher command.

10 Q. Would the changes then be noted back in the notebook that may have

11 had something that needed to be changed?

12 A. If only a name was involved, a very short and clear piece of

13 information, in most cases this was not changed in the notebook.

14 Q. Now, let me ask you, again focusing on your position as the person

15 who encrypted and transmitted these messages, when you received a

16 notebook,

17 Witness BB, from an intercept operator, it was customary, was it not, for

18 the intercept operator, at the end of the transmission that had been

19 copied into the notebook, to sign his initials or name? Isn't that

20 correct?

21 A. In some cases the operator would sign, but there were cases when

22 this was left out by omission.

23 Q. While you were the person who was doing the encrypting, was it

24 customary for you or the other person who was encrypting, after the

25 message had been transmitted, to sign either your name or your initials in

Page 4579

1 the notebook in respect of the particular conversation that had been

2 transmitted?

3 A. Yes. I would place my signature in the notebook for the

4 conversations that had been forwarded to the higher command.

5 MR. HARMON: Now, with the assistance of the usher, if I could

6 have Prosecutor's Exhibit 283 placed in front of the witness, and that is

7 found at tab 5. Mr. Usher, if you could turn that -- if you could turn

8 to --

9 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.

10 MR. HARMON: If you could turn to page 00804765.

11 Q. Witness BB, if you look at the bottom of page 765, you will see

12 two initials and a name. I do not want to identify orally the name or the

13 two initials, but am I correct, in referring to this particular

14 handwritten notation in this notebook, that the two initials are the

15 initials of the intercept operator? Am I correct on that?

16 A. Yes.

17 Q. And am I correct that the name that appears under that is your

18 name, reflecting the fact that you were the individual who typed this into

19 the computer, encrypted this message, and sent it on to your forward

20 command?

21 A. Yes.

22 MR. HARMON: Now, Mr. Usher, if you could kindly turn to the last

23 three digits in this same exhibit, 803.

24 Q. Let me ask you, Witness BB, is there a name at the bottom of that

25 particular intercept, bottom of page 803?

Page 4580

1 A. Yes.

2 Q. Does that name represent the name of the individual who

3 transmitted this conversation?

4 A. Yes. That is the name of the person who typed out, encrypted, and

5 forwarded this conversation to the higher command.

6 Q. Now, do you know, Witness BB, if this procedure was the procedure

7 that was followed all the time at Okresanica or was this introduced later

8 in time? You testified earlier that you had been there on more than one

9 occasion.

10 A. The last period of time that I spent there was a period when this

11 procedure was respected.

12 Q. Witness BB, I'm going to ask you now about a specific number of

13 intercepted communications, and let me ask you first, did you have an

14 opportunity to review various notebooks, copies of those notebooks, in my

15 office before coming to testify?

16 A. Yes.

17 Q. Did I ask you to attempt to identify certain conversations as

18 being the conversations that you personally intercepted and ask you to

19 date those conversations?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. Let me turn, first of all, if I could --

22 MR. HARMON: If the witness could have placed in front of him a

23 series of exhibits. We'll start with Prosecutor's Exhibit 340.

24 Q. Witness BB, could you take a look at -- we won't put that on the

25 ELMO. If you would just take a look at Prosecutor's Exhibit 340.

Page 4581

1 MR. HARMON: And, Mr. Usher, if you would kindly also open the

2 binder to tab 7, Prosecutor's Exhibit 285, and if you could turn to page

3 00800787.

4 Q. Witness BB, do you recognise in Prosecutor's Exhibit 340 your own

5 handwriting?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. Is this a communication that you personally intercepted?

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. Could you take a look at the corresponding notebook on page 787.

10 Is Prosecutor's Exhibit 340 identical to the intercepted communication

11 that is found on page 787, the bottom left-hand side of 787?

12 A. Yes, it is identical.

13 Q. Now, did I ask you, Witness, to attempt to date this particular

14 conversation?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. Let me refer you to the notebook, Prosecutor's Exhibit 285.

17 MR. HARMON: Mr. Usher, if you would turn to page -- the last

18 three digits in the ERN number are 781.

19 Q. Do you see a date in the upper left-hand corner on page 781?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. What is that date?

22 A. The 12th of July, 1995.

23 Q. Now, your conversation is then found at page 787.

24 MR. HARMON: Mr. Usher, would you turn to page 800, the last three

25 digits.

Page 4582

1 Q. Witness, referring to page 800 of Prosecutor's Exhibit 285, do you

2 see a date on that page?

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. What is that date?

5 A. The 13th of July, 1995.

6 Q. Do you know who wrote that date?

7 A. I wrote that date.

8 Q. Your conversation appears somewhere between the date of the 12th

9 and this date of the 13th. Are you therefore able to conclude when this

10 particular conversation found in Prosecutor's 340 was intercepted and

11 recorded in the notebook?

12 A. Yes. The 12th of the July, 1995.

13 MR. HARMON: Mr. President, I will now read this particular

14 intercept into the record, starting with:

15 Q. "785.000, Ch 5, 1156 hrs

16 (Duty Officer at the Badem OC/Operation

17 Centre/) X - Y (Zlatar /code-name/)

18 (Barely audible)"

19 Now, let me stop the reading here and just ask you a question,

20 Witness BB. Is the letter "Y," then, that's referenced in the remaining

21 part of the text Zlatar?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. Is "X" then Badem?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. Do you know "Badem" and "Zlatar" to be code names for particular

Page 4583

1 military units?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. I will now continue my reading.

4 "Y: Do you have ... regarding the link up

5 with your neighbour on the right.

6 X: Nothing has changed. It's all the same

7 as it used to be.

8 Y: ... they are moving towards Konjevic

9 Polje and (Kosat?)

10 X: We have information. It's exactly like

11 that.

12 Y: What action did you take, for God sake?

13 X: Listen, General Krstic is here ...

14 ... I ... Duty Officer ... to order.

15 Y: ...

16 X: It's been /?useless/ for three years and

17 no one cared. Let me please put you through

18 to General Krstic. He's up there in his

19 office. Hello!

20 (Line disconnected)"

21 Now, we've concluded with this particular exhibit, Witness.

22 MR. HARMON: Now if I could have Prosecutor's Exhibit 341 placed

23 in front of the witness. Mr. Usher, if you would kindly take Prosecutor's

24 Exhibit 283, the binder; 283 is found at tab 5, and if you could open

25 Prosecutor's Exhibit 283 to page 826 of the ERN number, the last three

Page 4584

1 digits.

2 Q. Witness BB, would you compare Prosecutor's Exhibit 341, which is

3 an extract from the notebook, 283, and compare it with the entry that is

4 found on page -- the last three digits being 826. Is the extract and the

5 conversation that's found in Prosecutor's 825 identical?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. Now, is the handwriting that's found in Prosecutor's Exhibit 341

8 your handwriting?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. Does that mean that you were the person who intercepted this

11 information that's reflected in this entry in the notebook?

12 A. Yes.

13 Q. Now, let me ask you this question: Did you also attempt to date

14 this conversation for us?

15 A. Yes.

16 MR. HARMON: Now, Mr. Usher, if you would kindly turn this -- in

17 Prosecutor's Exhibit 283, if you go back to page 826. I apologise,

18 Mr. Usher. 755. If you would go back to page 755.

19 Q. Do you see a date on page 755 in this notebook?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. What is that date?

22 A. The 2nd of July, 1995.

23 MR. HARMON: Now, Mr. Usher, if you would go past the conversation

24 and turn to page 836.

25 Q. Do you see a date on 836 in Prosecutor's Exhibit 283?

Page 4585

1 A. Yes, I do.

2 Q. Is that at the top of the page?

3 A. It is.

4 Q. What is that date?

5 A. The 13th of July, 1995.

6 Q. And in whose handwriting is that date?

7 A. That's my handwriting.

8 Q. Did I ask you last night, Witness, to analyse this notebook by

9 comparing the times and attempting to date this specific conversation, and

10 were you able to do so?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. Based on your analysis, what was the date that you concluded you

13 intercepted this particular conversation, the conversation that's found on

14 Prosecutor's Exhibit 341?

15 A. The 12th of July, 1995.

16 Q. Let me now read this very brief entry into the record. I'm

17 reading from Prosecutor's Exhibit 341:

18 "785.000, Ch 1, 1210 hours.

19 Krstic - Krsmanovic.

20 Krstic wants the buses to start moving right

21 away."

22 Witness BB, is this a transcript of the conversation or is this a

23 summary of what was heard? Can you explain this particular intercepted

24 communication?

25 A. This is the summary of the conversation that was heard.

Page 4586

1 Q. And why wasn't there a verbatim entry in this particular

2 conversation?

3 A. I couldn't tell you. I don't know.

4 Q. Did you occasionally summarise an entry in notebooks when you had

5 intercepted something?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. How was it that you were able to identify the speakers Krstic and

8 Krsmanovic in respect of Prosecutor's Exhibit 341?

9 A. By listening to the recording in which they introduced

10 themselves. So I was able to determine who the participants in the

11 conversation were. However, probably this piece of information that has

12 been recorded here, that is to say, the summary, is the only thing that

13 sounded like some kind of information, and so on the basis of that, I

14 wrote down this in summary form and did not transcribe the entire

15 conversation.

16 Q. Witness BB, we'll turn to the next exhibit. It's Prosecutor's

17 Exhibit 342.

18 MR. HARMON: That can be shown to the witness, and, Mr. Usher, if

19 you would kindly turn to Prosecutor's Exhibit 285, which is found at tab

20 7.

21 Q. If I can direct your attention to page 790 in Prosecutor's Exhibit

22 285. Witness, can you please compare Prosecutor's Exhibit 342 with the

23 notebook entry that is found at page 790 in Prosecutor's 285, and tell the

24 Judges whether these are identical?

25 A. Yes.

Page 4587

1 Q. Is this your handwriting?

2 A. It is.

3 Q. Now, did I ask you to attempt to date to conversation as well,

4 Witness BB?

5 A. Yes.

6 MR. HARMON: Mr. Usher, if you would kindly turn to page 781 in

7 Prosecutor's Exhibit 285.

8 Q. Again, you've testified previously about this. Is there a date in

9 the upper left-hand corner of 781?

10 A. Yes.

11 Q. Is that date July the 12th, 1995?

12 A. It is.

13 Q. And that is written in your hand, is it not?

14 A. No.

15 Q. All right. Let me turn your attention now to page 800 in this

16 particular notebook. Do you see a date in the right-hand, lower portion

17 of that page?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. What is the date that you see?

20 A. The 13th of July, 1995.

21 Q. Witness BB, the conversation that's the object of Prosecutor's

22 Exhibit 342 appears to be between the dates of July the 12th and July the

23 13th notations that are in the notebook. What is the date you, therefore,

24 conclude you intercepted this particular conversation?

25 A. The 12th of July, 1995.

Page 4588

1 Q. I will read this particular conversation into the record.

2 "785.000, Channel 5.

3 Participants: X (can't be

4 heard) - Krsmanovic.

5 K: Is Djukic there?

6 X: ...

7 K: If he can let him send me these

8 trailer-trucks immediately.

9 X: ...

10 K: Good. All right.

11 X: ...

12 K: Here at my place in the command.

13 (Poor audibility)"

14 Let me ask you, in this exhibit and in previous exhibits, Witness

15 BB, there appear to be dots at various locations within the text of the

16 conversation. What is represented by those dots?

17 A. They mean part of the conversation which was completely

18 incomprehensible.

19 MR. HARMON: If we could turn to the next exhibit, please,

20 Mr. Usher, it's Prosecutor's

21 Exhibit 343, and Mr. Usher, if you would kindly turn to the corresponding

22 page in Prosecutor's Exhibit 285, again found at tab 7, if you would turn

23 to page 791.

24 Q. Now, comparing the exhibit, Prosecutor's Exhibit 343 with the

25 entry that's found in Prosecutor's Exhibit 285, at pages 791 and 792, are

Page 4589

1 they identical?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. Is that your handwriting?

4 A. Yes, it is.

5 Q. So you intercepted this particular communication; is that correct,

6 Witness BB?

7 A. Yes.

8 Q. Again, I asked you to attempt to date this conversation, and let's

9 go through that exercise very quickly again.

10 MR. HARMON: Mr. Usher, if you would turn to 781 in Prosecutor's

11 Exhibit 285.

12 Q. This is a date we've seen before. The date of July the 12th, 1995

13 appears on the upper left-hand corner at page 781; is that correct,

14 Witness BB?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. If we could turn to page 800 in this same exhibit, we can see

17 again a date we've seen before, July the 13th, 1995, found on page 800; is

18 that correct, Witness BB?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. Since the conversation that is reflected in Prosecutor's Exhibit

21 343 is found between the dates

22 of 12 July 1995 and 13 July 1995, are you able to provide the Trial

23 Chamber with a date when this particular conversation was intercepted?

24 A. Yes. This conversation was intercepted on the 12th of July, 1995.

25 Q. Then I will read this into the record, this conversation.

Page 4590

1 "785.000, Channel 5, 1240 hrs

2 (inaudible) (PANORAMA) X - Y (barely

3 audible).

4 ...

5 Y: We are starting the evacuation of those

6 who want to go to Kladanj.

7 X: OK.

8 Y: Pass it on ... just /let them/ provide

9 transportation.

10 X: ...

11 Y: And reinforce ... with trucks and buses,

12 and a water tank should be sent, to give them

13 water and food. This morning we organised it

14 here, we'll give them everything. I talked

15 with them and we'll accept all of the

16 civilians who want to and they can stay.

17 Those who don't want to can choose where

18 they'll go.

19 X: ...

20 Y: ... see you, bye.

21 /signed/" with a name inserted therein.

22 Let me turn to the --

23 MR. HARMON: Mr. President, I think we're rapidly coming to a

24 close for the day's work.

25 JUDGE RODRIGUES: [Interpretation] You're quite right, Mr. Harmon.

Page 4591

1 I think that we should break for the weekend and resume next Monday at

2 9.30 with this witness. Is that right? Perhaps it would be better to

3 finish with this witness and then go on, but we'll see.

4 Witness, we are going to continue after the weekend. I hope that

5 you have a good weekend here in The Hague.

6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.

7 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at

8 2.30 p.m., to be reconvened on Monday,

9 the 26th day of June, 2000, at 9.30 a.m.

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