1 Monday, 14 March, 2005
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 2.58 p.m.
6 JUDGE PARKER: Good afternoon, sir. If I could remind you of the
7 affirmation you made at the beginning of your evidence, which still
9 Yes, Mr. Shin.
10 MR. SHIN: Good afternoon, Your Honour.
11 Just as a preliminary housekeeping matter, I would just note that
12 there is one exhibit under seal for which there was no need for if to be
13 under seal and that ask Exhibit 163.
14 JUDGE PARKER: So that can be unsealed.
15 MR. SHIN: Yes, please, Your Honour.
16 JUDGE PARKER: 163, very well. Thank you.
17 WITNESS: Witness Shefqet Kabashi [Resumed]
18 [Witness answered through interpreter]
19 Examination by Mr. Shin: [Continued]
20 Q. Good afternoon, Witness.
21 A. Good afternoon.
22 MR. TOPOLSKI: Your Honours, forgive me for rising. There are
23 special measures in place for this witness and I can see his image on the
24 screen in the public gallery. I also note there is no microphone there
25 for voice distortion.
1 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you very much, Mr. Topolski.
2 MR. TOPOLSKI: I should say in comfort for the witness his image
3 is now off the screen and was only there momentarily.
4 JUDGE PARKER: I'm looking at another screen showing it in a
5 distorted form. I see the electronic box behind you, you see.
6 MR. TOPOLSKI: Yes. I see the one the public sees.
7 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Shin.
8 MR. SHIN: I'm sorry, Your Honour, I'm not sure we have some
9 other technical difficulty we're addressing. Perhaps I'll just wait a
11 JUDGE PARKER: I think if you commence, Mr. Shin, we'll see
12 whether it's in order now.
13 MR. SHIN: Thank you, Your Honour.
14 Q. Witness, when we broke off on Friday, you were telling us about a
15 meeting in Klecka with Celiku and others. Was Qerqiz present at that
17 THE INTERPRETER: I'm sorry, I didn't hear the beginning of the
18 sentence. Could he -- ask him to repeat it, please.
19 Q. Sorry, the translators didn't hear the beginning of the sentence.
20 Could you please repeat what you said.
21 A. I don't know I said. It is possible that he was there where the
22 meeting took place in that room earlier.
23 Q. When you say that, I'm referring now to the meeting in the room
24 where Celiku and as you say approximately 10 other persons were there.
25 Just to be clear, do you know whether Qerqiz was in that meeting?
1 A. This is what I'm trying to explain. I said I'm not sure whether
2 he entered that particular room or not.
3 Q. On Friday you also told us a few names of people who were there
4 and units that were represented there. You mentioned a Kumanova,
5 Gazetari and the leader of the Guri unit. I'd like to ask you first, did
6 you at that time know the full name of the person known as Gazetari?
7 A. No, I did not.
8 Q. Did you learn the true name of that person later on?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And what did you learn it to be?
11 A. His name was Shukri Buja.
12 Q. How did you learn that that was his name?
13 A. I learned that through the media, through television. I don't
14 know for sure. I saw that it appeared several times.
15 Q. Can you tell us approximately when it was that you learned his
16 true name?
17 A. It was after the war.
18 Q. Apart from the persons that you have named previously and whom I
19 listed just now, were there any other persons whose name or the name of
20 whose unit you recall being present at that meeting?
21 A. No. Apart from what I mentioned earlier.
22 Q. Witness, have you ever heard of a unit called the Pellumbi unit?
23 A. Yes, I have heard.
24 Q. Was anyone from that unit present at that meeting in Klecka with
25 Celiku and others?
1 A. There was also someone whose name I don't remember whom I knew
2 before. I talked with him. I'm not certain whether he was from Pellumbi
4 Q. How long was this meeting as far as you can recall?
5 A. It didn't last long. I can't tell you for certain. I knew -- I
6 know that it was interrupted because of some shelling nearby, and I think
7 that was the reason for the interruption of the meeting.
8 Q. You had testified on Friday that your unit, you joined that unit
9 in Malisevo and came with them from Rrasat e Rrahovecit to assist Celiku.
10 These other persons at this meeting, and the other units that were
11 represented, do you know where they were based?
12 A. Which unit are you asking me about?
13 Q. Let's begin with the Guri unit. You had testified that someone
14 from the Guri unit was present at that meeting.
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. And my question is: Did you know whether the Guri unit was
17 normally based, if you know.
18 A. I don't know that.
19 Q. Did you know where Gazetari was normally based?
20 A. I met him there at the headquarters, and I thought he belonged
21 there. Also, about the units that reported there, the people who
22 represented those units whom I didn't know their names, whose names I
23 didn't know, I thought that they too belonged to the headquarters.
24 Q. Could you explain, if possible, why it was that you believed that
25 they belonged to the headquarters?
1 A. I believed so because I was there where everyone was reporting,
2 and this is where I thought that they were -- belonged to the staff, to
3 the headquarters.
4 Q. Witness, how long did you stay at Klecka on that day?
5 A. As I said earlier, when the meeting was interrupted because of
6 the shelling nearby, that was why we left the headquarters.
7 Q. Did you go from Klecka to somewhere else?
8 A. Yes. I went to Divjake village. From there I went to Novoselle,
9 to the unit where I belonged.
10 Q. And how long did you stay in Novoselle, with that unit?
11 A. I don't know for sure. Maybe it was on the next day that I left.
12 Q. Where did you go when you left?
13 A. We went to towards some villages with a small lorry. There were
14 two people who accompanied us. I don't know exactly where the places we
15 went through. I know that we used the asphalt road, the road from
16 Orahovac to Malisevo. There is a village, Marali, it's called there.
17 And I know that it was early morning when we arrived in Panorc village
18 where we stayed until the next day.
19 Q. And why was it -- why was it that you left Novo Selo at that
21 A. I know that through the radio communication we received a message
22 from Jablanice, that is, that it was attacked. And I think that the news
23 arrived at Klecka at the headquarters from where we received orders to go
24 to Jablanice.
25 Q. Did you speak to anyone before leaving from Novo Selo?
1 A. I spoke with a soldier who escorted us on the way whose name I
2 don't know.
3 Q. Who made the decision -- who made the decision to leave Novo
5 A. After the news that came from Jablanice, the entire unit agreed
6 to leave. But as to the decision, I don't know who made the decision.
7 Q. And if you can remember who -- who told -- how did you learn, how
8 did you learn about the message from Jablanica?
9 A. I said earlier that I knew that we had some radio contacts. As
10 far as I remember, the soldier who came with us, who came to call us, who
11 brought the lorry, we was with another person and he told us that we had
12 to go there. But I don't remember exactly whether we talked about the
13 person who had given the order. This I don't know.
14 Q. And the soldier who came with you, do you know what unit he
15 belonged to?
16 A. No, I don't know. It is the same person who came and called me
17 to go to Klecke. It's the same person who came with us. I can't
18 remember his name. I never learned his name.
19 MR. GUY-SMITH: Well, Your Honour, I would object at this
20 juncture on the grounds of hearsay, an observation that I normally do not
21 raise, because the questions asked and the responses given do not even
22 meet a threshold of reliability with regard to the information received.
23 There's no identification whatsoever of any speakers other than a soldier
24 who is unidentified.
25 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Guy-Smith. A person unidentified;
1 I know that you can say that is no identification, but in the practice
2 here it can be. So that we are well aware that it may be that little can
3 be attached to that, but it doesn't technically rule itself out on that
5 MR. GUY-SMITH: I appreciate the Court's ruling, and I am more
6 concerned just to highlight the point than to -- to believe that based on
7 the evidence thus adduced that I would obtain the kind of relief that I
8 would in other jurisdiction.
9 JUDGE PARKER: We have to live in the jurisdiction where we are,
10 Mr. Guy-Smith.
11 Yes, Mr. Shin.
12 MR. SHIN:
13 Q. Witness, on Friday, you had testified that the Lapusnik gorge was
14 overtaken by the Serbs. My final question on this -- in this area to you
15 is: Do you know what -- do you know when that meeting in Klecka with
16 Celiku and others, when that occurred in relation to the overtaking of
17 Lapusnik gorge by Serb forces?
18 A. The meeting was a few days after that. I can't give you an exact
20 MR. SHIN: Your Honour, if we could please go into private
21 session for the next area.
22 JUDGE PARKER: Yes.
23 [Private session] [Confidentiality lifted by later order of the Chamber]
24 MR. SHIN:
25 Q. Witness, you testified on Friday that you had registered with the
1 KLA at -- at the barracks, a barracks were soldiers were staying. How
2 many soldiers were staying there, as far as you can recall?
3 A. Some 10 or 15 soldiers.
4 Q. And did you -- did you yourself stay at that barracks at some
6 A. Yes. If you mean Jablanice, yes.
7 Q. Yes, I do mean Jablanica. Approximately how long did you stay
8 there at those barracks?
9 A. I don't know exactly how long we stayed, but even after I left
10 that place, I used to go there quite often.
11 Q. You -- do you know approximately when it was that you stayed
12 there, even if I don't recall exactly how long it was that you stayed
14 A. Are you asking me about the time I went there or...
15 Q. I'm sorry, my question wasn't clear. Can you tell us what --
16 when it was that you were staying at the barracks in Jablanica, and you
17 can do that by what month or months it is was, or by any other way that
18 you can explain that.
19 A. I stayed there when I first went. That is, in April. Up to
20 early May. But during the time we also left the place, we went to other
21 places, to other surrounding villages. After 21st of May, I remember
22 that I personally went back there again.
23 Q. If we could just focus on -- on April first -- sorry, on the
24 month of April.
25 Apart from the 10 or 15 soldiers including yourself staying
1 there, was there -- did you see anybody else who was there?
2 A. Yes, I have seen, but I'm not getting the point of your question.
3 Q. Were you aware of any persons who were being detained there?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. When did you first become aware of this?
6 A. I learned that for the first time on the day I went there.
7 Q. Did you see anyone who was being detained there at that time?
8 A. Yes, I've seen two persons.
9 Q. Could you tell us who they were?
10 A. Afrim Morina, from Gjakova, someone by the name of Idriz, he was
11 from Polac of Drenica. He lived in Prizren at that time before he was
12 taken to that place.
13 Q. Could you describe to us where in those barracks you saw those
14 two people?
15 A. They were in the same building where I too stayed for some days.
16 Q. Could you tell us more specifically where in that building you
17 saw these two people?
18 A. In the same building that I stayed, meaning that this was the
19 only building that was like a barracks, if you like, where soldiers
21 Q. Perhaps if I could ask it this way: Could you please describe
22 the barracks, the physical layout?
23 A. Yes. It is located at the -- the exit of Jablanice village. In
24 the direction where you live Jablanica, in the direction of Decane. It
25 is on the right side of the road. There were two big wooden gates. One
1 part of it was covered. When you enter the gate on the left side of the
2 yard, there is a small house with four rooms. It is a bit higher from
3 the ground. It had a small cellar when you entered it, on the left side,
4 in the next room -- in the second room was where we stayed. That was the
5 place where I saw those two persons.
6 Q. In the room where you saw those two persons, was -- was the door
8 A. No, it was not.
9 Q. Were there -- were there any guards at the door?
10 A. I can't say that there were guards in the proper sense of the
11 word because we soldiers could go in, could go out. There wasn't
12 somebody designated to be a guard.
13 Q. Were there any guards at the house, if not actually at the door?
14 A. Yes. At the entrance we used to -- to be guard, to stand there
15 and guard in shifts by three or four hours.
16 Q. Now, turning back to the two persons that you say that you saw
17 there and beginning with Afrim Morina. What was his physical condition
18 when you saw him?
19 A. I used to know Afrim Morina, but when I saw him there, he wasn't
20 in a good state. He was beaten. There were some signs on his face. He
21 used to wear glasses, reading glasses.
22 Q. The translation said that there were some signs on his face.
23 Could you explain that, please?
24 A. Yes. Signs, meaning when somebody hits you, you know, and you
25 can find the injuries, you can see the marks of injuries or the scars on
1 the face.
2 Q. And what was the physical condition, as far as you saw, of the
3 other person, this Idriz?
4 A. His physical condition was also bad. He was shrunk. He too had
5 signs or marks. I can't tell you whether there were many of them or not,
6 but there were some.
7 Q. Why were these two persons being held there?
8 A. To my recollection, from what I heard there, also from Afrim
9 directly and also from Idriz, Idriz came from Drenica, and he said that
10 he had talked with someone from the KLA there. He came to Dukagjin
11 plateau to find someone to find arms. Afrim was his friend. Afrim was
12 someone who had been engaged in activities or in the organisation field
13 regarding the Kosovo issue. They met and they came together. And they
14 asked for weapons. I'm not clear but this is how it was then. This is
15 what both of them told me.
16 When they came to the headquarters, they were told that, We will
17 talk with the leader who sent you here. Idriz said to me that somebody
18 which the pseudonym of Lisi, this is what he told me, that is Idriz,
19 after contacting that certain Lisi, they told him that you are lying,
20 nobody has sent you. You have come here to gather information and this
21 is where the bad thing that happened to them started.
22 Q. And when you say that this is when the bad thing that happened to
23 them started, could you explain what you mean by that?
24 A. By this I mean their maltreatment. And the scars and the signs
25 that I saw with my own eyes.
1 Q. Do you know how long those two were in that barracks in detention
2 in Jablanica?
3 A. I don't know exactly, but I know that when I went there, they
4 were there.
5 Q. Could you say roughly. Were they there for more than a week or
6 less than a week?
7 A. I don't know. I didn't discuss this so I cannot tell you whether
8 it was one or two weeks.
9 Q. Do you know what ultimately happened to Afrim Morina and to this
11 A. I met Afrim much later, maybe it was even earlier that I met him,
12 but I remember meeting him sometime in August. I'm not certain about the
13 time. I can describe the conversation I had with him. He told me that I
14 left and I went to Baran, in Azem municipality [phoen] [as interpreted],
15 under the command of Tahir Zema. They had barracks there. It was in
16 August after I returned to Jablanica for some days. I was in Jablanica
17 with some friends of mine whom I knew from the past, when I was a
18 soldier, and I said so him, Are you coming? No, he said, because you
19 know what I have been through. I know that he told me that he was
20 injured at the entrance to Gllogjan. I said I went there as
21 reinforcements and he was injured on his arm. He showed me the wound.
22 He showed me also about Idriz. He said, Yes they accepted him as a
23 soldier. He participated in the attack on Jablanica. He wasn't good
24 enough and he was killed by the Serbs. Then he was massacred, he said.
25 Q. And just so that we're clear, when you say that Afrim told you
1 that hes with a soldier and that Idriz had become a soldier, what -- who
2 were they soldiers for? Was that -- I'll leave it at that: Who were
3 they soldiers for?
4 A. They were KLA soldiers, but I -- but I know that Afrim went to
5 Jaran [phoen], whereas Idriz to Jablanice headquarters.
6 Q. Did you see other people who were being detained at those
7 barracks in the month of April?
8 A. I don't remember.
9 Q. Did you see anyone there who was detained in the month of May?
10 A. Yes. In May, on the 21st of May, I saw two.
11 Q. Could you --
12 A. They were tied up.
13 Q. I'm sorry to interrupt. Could you tell us who it was that you
15 A. Their names I don't know.
16 Q. Was there anything that you did know about them, if not their
18 A. Those two persons on the 21st of May in the morning, that day
19 that I participated in the front fighting where a friend of mine got
20 killed, I saw them earlier. They said that they were Roma or Gypsy -
21 this is what is what we say - they suspected them of something. I didn't
22 see them anymore that day and I wasn't interested in them. When we
23 returned on the same day in the evening, I know that I saw them in that
24 part that was covered, it was lam [phoen], we called it, like a stable.
25 They were tied with a wire and I know that they were son-in-law and
1 father-in-law. That is, they were in-laws.
2 Q. And just to clarify, when you say that you saw them in that part
3 that was covered, is that a part of the barracks in Jablanica?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. And when you tell us that they suspected them of something, who
6 is the "they"? Who suspected these two persons of something?
7 A. The fact that they were tied up means that they were suspected of
8 one thing or another. I can't tell you who suspected of them, because I
9 didn't know who brought them there.
10 Q. Did you learn anything about what it was that they were suspected
12 A. No, I don't know. I can't tell you.
13 Q. What was the physical condition of these two people when you saw
15 A. I can't describe that. I can't describe it in fact.
16 Q. Do you know what ultimately happened to those two persons?
17 A. No. I do know that Lahija, my first leader, said that I will
18 sent them to Drenica. I heard him say that. I don't know -- remember
19 with whom he was talking when I heard that. At that time, these words,
20 meaning if you send somebody to Drenica, you will see the end of that
21 person. That person was supposed to be executed.
22 Q. Did anyone tell you specifically that that's what that phrase
24 A. That was a phrase that was constantly used that. Was the meaning
25 of that phrase that I knew.
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 Q. Witness, was there somebody else at that barracks at some point
2 that was detained, someone that you knew from before?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Who was that?
5 A. There were two persons. I met them when I was coming from
6 Albania. I don't know exactly at what time I met them. It might have
7 been the beginning of July or the mid-July.
8 Q. Can you tell us the names of those two persons?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And what are those name, please. We are in private session.
11 A. Yes, I know. Pal Krasniqi from Kline and Skender Kugi from a
12 village close by to the village that I come from.
13 Q. What was the physical condition of those two persons when you saw
15 A. That day I stopped before the door, I was with a group of
16 friends. They were from Drini Valley. Most of them were Catholics some
17 of them I knew from before. We were returning from Albania. We stopped
18 there because I used to go to that headquarters to meet some friends.
19 When we went inside I saw those two persons. Lahi had told me, Do you
20 know them? Do you know your neighbour? I said, Yes, what has he done,
21 why is he here, I said. You -- you don't know that he was a big fish,
22 meaning a big spy. This is how I understood the word to mean. He said,
23 he has worked for UBD, Yugoslavia secret service and then I asked, I
24 asked I talked with Pal because his brother is a friend of mine, even
25 today. And for the sake of his brother, I asked him he said, I don't
1 know why I'm here. I came here to enlist to become a KLA soldier. I
2 stayed as a soldier for one week and then they suspected me to be a spy
3 and they brought me here, he told me. I saw it with my own eyes. He was
4 maltreated. He was reading a book that I saw him.
5 Q. And when you say he was maltreated could you explain briefly how
6 he looked?
7 A. I don't know how to put it. Somebody beats you, you can see the
8 marks of the beating. You can always tell when somebody is badly beaten.
9 Q. Did either of these two persons say anything to you about the
10 accusations against them, that they were a spy, or a big spy?
11 A. Didn't tell me anything. Pal told me that. After Lahi left
12 together with Bandash. I don't know his true name even now. I asked Pal
13 myself. I told him Pal tell me, why are you here, what have you done?
14 He said, They have maltreated me greatly. They forced me to admit to
15 them that an inspector from Peja sent me to get information from KLA. He
16 said, Then I accept it because they were beating me and I said Yes, and I
17 said to him You shouldn't have accepted this but I understand what it
18 means to -- when you are forced to admit something, because I tried it on
19 my own back at a later time.
20 Q. Just so that we're clear when you say he told you that he had
21 been forced to admit that an inspector had sent him to get information
22 about the KLA, and inspector for whom?
23 A. It was an inspector from Peja. His name was Aca. Almost
24 everybody in Peja knew that person. An inspector is somebody who is
25 supposed to capture people who commit a theft or rob something.
1 Q. I'm sorry, just to be clear, this is -- who does this inspector
2 work for?
3 A. He worked for the Serb service.
4 Q. Could you explain, if you know, what ultimately happened to
5 Skender Kugi and Pal Krasniqi?
6 A. When I left them the day, I went towards Malisevo. It was July.
7 This is what I remember, if I am not wrong even though much time was
8 elapsed. Then we arrived in Drenica and towards Likovc there are several
9 villages there. Isdrime [phoen] was the last point. When you come from
10 Kline and between Kline and Istog then we went in that direction right at
11 Drenace village. Then I borrowed a car from a friend and we drove -- all
12 over those villages to arrive at the village where my family lives. I
13 met my relatives and I told my uncle about these two persons whom he too
14 knew. I told him they were suspected of being collaborators, of being
15 spies. My uncle said I don't believe that, because -- we were talking
16 more about Skender because he said Skender was a person whom he knew, and
17 there were many persons -- there were certificates to prove that he sent
18 foodstuffs to the KLA, food provisions. And my uncle said, I don't
19 believe that, because he will to work with the Serbs. He had to get
20 commodities, goods from them. But I don't think he has -- he is a spy,
21 so he told me. If you can do something about him, please do that, to
22 save him.
6 I don't know about Pal. After the offensive, after the attacks,
7 I heard that -- it was September -- I don't know what happened to them
8 after that. I met his brother after the war. He said I don't know, his
10 with him I told him -- I went to KLA that he had no heard about him after
12 Q. And after -- after Skender died, do you know what happened to the
14 A. Yes. He was buried nearby. There was a building meant to be an
15 ambulance it was not finished yet. He was buried behind that building.
16 I heard that his family tried to find out about him. They wanted to take
17 away his body from that place. Somebody in Jablanice told me that they
18 took him to another place where some relatives of his were living. This
19 is what I heard. I didn't see it with my own eyes.
20 Q. Do you know where he was ultimately buried?
21 A. I thought first he was buried in Jablanice. Then his body was
22 buried in Irzniq. Some soldiers accompanied him. I don't know where.
23 This is what I heard, that he was buried in Irzniq.
24 Q. And who did you hear this from?
25 A. I heard this in Jablanice. From some friends.
1 Q. When you say some soldiers accompanied him, what does that mean?
2 A. I heard. This is what I heard, I'm saying. That some soldiers
3 accompanied him and that he was buried with military honours. This is
4 what I heard.
5 Q. Did you speak to anyone about the fact that you had heard that he
6 had been buried with military honours?
7 A. Yes. I talked with Lahi about that. Asked him, I told him that
8 I have heard that he was buried with military honours. I remember you
9 telling me that he is a spy. And you -- how come you didn't know him
10 even though he was your neighbour? He said, Forget about that. These
11 are rumours. So I didn't pursue it further.
12 Q. And you mentioned Lahi and you mentioned him a couple of other
14 When you mention Lahi, is that the same person? I'm sorry, let
15 me ask this first. Who is Lahi when you talk about him here?
16 A. Lahi is the same person that I have been mentioning all over
17 here, in my statement. His name is Lahi Ibrahimaj. His pseudonym was
18 Magjupi first. That is the person that I'm talking about.
19 Q. And when you say that Lahi told you that these are rumours what
20 was he talking about? They were rumours that he was a spy or there were
21 rumours that he was buried with military honours?
22 A. He meant that they were words. Words he meant, the military
23 honours. He said, Forget about them that is not true. This is what the
24 implication of his word. That was the answer to my question, when I
25 asked him, that I heard that he was buried with military honours.
1 Q. Witness, apart from the persons that you have named, if you could
2 just answer yes or no to this question. Did you see other persons being
3 detained at Jablanica in that barracks?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. You've mentioned -- some of the people you have mentioned have
6 been -- you mentioned that they showed signs of being beaten. Did you
7 actually yourself see these people, these detainees being beaten?
8 A. Yes, I've seen them.
9 Q. And just from what you've seen, could you name some of the people
10 that you saw carrying out these beatings, if you know their names? And
11 bearing in mind we are in private session.
12 MR. GUY-SMITH: Excuse me Your Honour, I'm going to at this point
13 interpose an observation. Which I think is more than just being on --
14 it's Monday I had had some rest over the weekend. But this entire line
15 of questioning is outside the matters charged in our indictment, it deals
16 with an entirely different geographical area. Deals with an entirely
17 different participants. I believe I understand some of the reason why
18 the Prosecution may be seeking this testimony. However, they are in a
19 better position than I, of course, to explain that to the Court if need
20 be. But with regard to the last question asked which is the names of
21 people, unless those names are in some way connected to people who are on
22 trial here, I think that it stretches the bound the relevance.
23 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Shin.
24 MR. SHIN: Your Honour, I believe Mr. Guy-Smith anticipated my
25 response, which is that these -- these events do go to the widespread or
1 systematic nature of these incidents.
2 JUDGE PARKER: And the names?
3 MR. SHIN: I'm sorry?
4 JUDGE PARKER: The names.
5 MR. SHIN: With regard to the names I would submit that the names
6 of these persons engaged in these beatings go to first of all,
7 completeness of the story. And secondly, they go to some indication of
8 the nature of this widespread and systematic event. In other words, and
9 I don't wish to anticipate too much the witness's testimony on this
10 point, but the persons who are involved in it, the persons who is are
11 involved in the direct beatings do reflect the manner in which these
12 incidents were carried out in this particular place, and we would submit
13 that is this a as spent of the widespread and systematic nature of these
14 crimes which is relevant to this case.
15 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
16 Carry on, Mr. Shin. The decision is that there is a potential
18 MR. SHIN:
19 Q. Witness, bearing in mind that we are in private session, of the
20 beatings that you saw yourself now, that yourself saw, can you name some
21 of these -- can you name the persons that you saw carrying out those
23 A. Before I give these names, is it possible to make an explanation?
24 I think it is useful to the Court and to the counsel as well. If I'm
25 allowed to make it.
1 Q. Witness, if you could please try answering the question first and
2 then provided an explanation. Could we do it that way?
3 A. Yes. I saw Lahi Ibrahimaj, when he beat Jah Bushati which I
4 didn't mention. I saw Togeri. Idriz Bala was his name. I learned it
5 later. In the beginning nobody knew it. He came to the Jablanica
6 headquarters. Anybody he found he would beat them. I saw Bandashi. The
7 same thing. I could say the same thing about him as well. I saw Muftari
8 and from what I know he was the person that took Jah Bushati and brought
9 him to the headquarters. And another one Xhevdeti, he was from
10 Jablanica. I saw him once. I did not see him the same as the other
11 people in the sense that...
12 Q. Witness, did you wish to provide an explanation to that now?
13 A. Yes, if I'm allowed to.
14 Q. Yes. Please go ahead. Please go ahead and provide an
15 explanation of your answer.
16 A. It is very difficult for me to be here and testify. I am an
17 Albanian; that's what I think, at least. But there are people who are in
18 a more difficult position than me because -- because they have been
19 accused. The people that I mentioned earlier and people of the same --
20 of the same ilk, they have called me a traitor. Well, I've been in
21 prison in Nis for three months and three days.
22 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction: Imprisonment was for
23 three years and three months.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I asked for a private session here,
25 because there are many criminals at large in Kosovo now. They have
1 killed many people during the war and after the war as well. It was a
2 very difficult situation after the war. I have had threats, there have
3 been threats to my family, to my father --
4 MR. KHAN: I apologise for interpreting up the witness. And I
5 know we are all very grateful that he has come to come to the Court to
6 give his evidence and for Your Honours to assist that. But Your Honours,
7 there is a difference between explaining testimony and going on a detour
8 about matter about which in fact have not been raised in
9 examination-in-chief and I would ask Your Honours to -- exclude the
10 witness commenting on matters which have not in fact been sought to be
11 elicited in examination-in-chief. By all means, an explanation in
12 relation to evidence but not in relation to collateral matters which need
13 not engage your Your Honours’ time.
14 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Khan for having concern at the time
15 but in the personal and political circumstance, think in fairness to the
16 witness, he should be allowed to express these matters that concern him
17 deeply about his evidence.
18 If there is more that you wish to say.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you. I don't want to take
20 too much of your time myself. But these are many things that have
21 followed me all the time, from the time of the war, in the prison, and
22 now as well. And it's been very difficult for me to come here and give
23 evidence. And that's why I have asked for it to be a private session.
24 It's because of my family, of my relatives. There are many people who
25 don't know about the things that have happened. Many people have been
1 killed after the war in Kosovo. They were innocent, they were killed
2 only because they believed in one party or another party. I don't belong
3 to any party, but I never said things that did not exist or did not
4 happen, although I have been called a traitor. Those people can well
5 remain there where they are in their lofty positions as patriots, while I
6 am here.
7 This is an international court. This is not a court about Serbia
8 as it's been called in Kosovo. And that's why I would like to apologise
9 if I make any mistakes or give inaccurate dates because it's been a long
10 time and I can't remember all of the things as they happened and I'm very
11 excited and nervous at this moment. That's all.
12 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you very much.
13 Yes, Mr. Shin.
14 MR. SHIN:
15 Q. Thank you, Witness. To the best of your knowledge what was Lahi
16 Ibrahimaj's position at Jablanica?
17 A. At his home.
18 Q. I'm sorry my question may have come unclear. What was his --
19 what was his position within the KLA at Jablanica?
20 A. In the beginning when I went to Jablanica, he was a commander. I
21 can corroborate that with another fact. Because at the moment I went
22 there to the barracks from the headquarters -- the headquarters was
23 Lahi's house -- when I was sent to be admitted as a soldier. I met
24 Leopardi. He admitted me as a soldier. He accepted me there.
25 But how I knew that Lahi was a commander. This was because many
1 people from the village came, some in uniform, some without a uniform,
2 they came from various villages, and there was a list that he made that
3 he put -- posted at the gate of the barracks and this list described the
4 people who had the right to go inside the barracks and the first name
5 there was Lahi Ibrahimaj's name. There was were other names as well but
6 this is the fact that showed me that he was the leader there.
7 Q. As far as you know, was there anyone in a more senior position to
8 Lahi Ibrahimaj in Jablanica?
9 A. As far as I know, no.
10 Q. Very briefly on Jah Bushati. Was he -- just to confirm: Was he a
11 detainee at Jablanica?
12 A. Yes, I said it earlier. Jah Bushati was stopped by Muftari. He
13 was traveling from Kosarice to Dukagjin in the direction of Jablanica.
14 There is a hill there. There is a river as well the Betonaj River
15 [phoen] and he was stopped on the way. Muftari brought him to Jablanica.
16 Q. Do you know why -- do you know why Jah Bushati was stopped and
17 why he was brought to Jablanica?
18 A. I don't know. I can't say anything concrete about this. He was
19 stopped because he had done some spy work. A day or two before that,
20 somebody had been shot. This person was with his brother and his brother
21 escaped. This was a person call the Shala from Buqan. But I don't know,
22 I can't -- maybe his surname, I can't give you his surname. So one of
23 them was killed and the other injured. And later, in Jablanica, I heard
24 that Jaha had something to do with this.
25 Q. Witness, was there a time in 1998 when you left Jablanica and did
1 not return?
2 A. Yes, I left.
3 Q. And when was that, as far as you can recall?
4 A. I don't know exactly. Maybe by the end of September.
5 Q. And bearing in mind that we are in private session, could you
6 explain briefly why it was that you left?
7 A. I'll try to be brief. There were around 76 soldiers, 76 of us in
8 the headquarters, in Jablanica. Maybe not the headquarters but the
9 barracks where the soldiers stayed. After we had some kind of counting
10 of the soldiers, and I know that we had lunch, I had to go to the point
11 together with my -- two of my uncle's sons, together with which I was a
12 soldier. Jaha and Brahimi [as interpreted]. Jaha was killed by the
13 Serbs on the 22nd of October, 1998. Bashkim was wounded on his head.
14 And because of the wound, he cannot see now, and he has a lot of problems
15 with his brain, his mind. They went to the point while Mala stopped me.
16 He told me that you have to do a very important job. He gave me a
17 revolver, a Croatian type, 15, number 15, and he told me you have to kill
18 Rrok Berisha tonight. I asked why, and he said, this offensive that
19 happened in Luga e Baranit is because of him.
20 I took the gun. I went to Jaha and Bashtimi. I told them, This
21 is what happened to me, I have been given this order. Jaha could not
22 believe me. He said, you are joking. This is not -- this cannot be
23 true. And I told him, Yes, this is true, I'm telling you. He said if I
24 knew that these things happened within the KLA, I would not join.
25 We stayed there for half an hour, or an hour, I'm not sure how
1 long. I was thinking about what I would do, and I told Jaha I want to go
2 and see whether this person looks like.
3 During that conversation, Jaha told me and my family told me that
4 our families have this traditional and we know each other because we
5 lived in the Zhabel village. My father was born there. There is in the
6 Gjakova municipality, close to Jablanica.
7 Q. If I could just interrupt you please do not mention the name of
8 your home village and there is no need to mention the names of your
9 cousins either.
10 MR. SHIN: And Your Honours out of an abundance of caution have
11 the names of his cousins redacted.
12 JUDGE PARKER: Yes.
13 MR. SHIN:
14 Q. Witness, sorry to interrupt you. Please continue.
15 A. So I was told by my family that his family was a very good one
16 and a loyal one. I mean the family of the person. I knew that he was an
17 activist in the LDK. He had also been a member of the human rights
18 organisation or association. I went to his door, and called out his
19 name. He came out. I started to talk with him. I told him who I was,
20 and I told him why I was there. He said No problem. Well, if it's worth
21 it, you can kill me, if you think it's worth it. And I said no, I have
22 come here to ask you, is there anything bad, is there anything wrong
23 between you and the leaders? And he said, No, I have been on very good
24 terms, especially with Ramush Haradinaj. We had a meeting in my room, in
25 my soba [phoen], when both sides came together. That's what they
1 referred to. It was the Tahir Zemi side and Ramush Haradinaj side. So
2 they had supper here. We had very good relations, both with Tahir and
3 Ramush. And he said, Only when they came in Gllogjan we exchanged some
4 words with regard to the population. Only that. I don't know of
5 anything else.
6 If you want me to speak more at length about this case...
7 Q. Witness, if you could just -- just say was it -- my question had
8 been to you why you had left Jablanica without returning. Was this the
9 reason, this assignment that you had been given, was this the reason that
10 you had left?
11 A. To come to the reason why I left, I made another appointment with
12 that person later that night, so I met him again. Both of us knew that
13 or believed that people were being killed. Innocent people were being
14 killed for personal interests of people. People who were within the KLA.
15 And I said to him, If you can influence leaders of the KLA or people who
16 the Kosovan people trust, and I said, If you want me -- if you want me to
17 escort you to take you to another place to be safe I can do that. He
18 said no, no, there is no need for that. So we had that appointment again
19 with him. I sent word to my leader, the one who gave me that gun, and I
20 said to him, Take your gun back and we will see each other later, again.
21 So I went back home. I spoke to my family and they told me, No,
22 you can't do these things, if somebody tells you to kill another person
23 without any fact or any trial or anything like that. I stayed for some
24 days at home. I was ready to go back, but some relatives came to me and
25 mentioned that case, and asked me -- and they said How could you, how
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 could you do that? How were you -- how could you be prepared to kill
2 Rrok Berisha and I was surprised, how could people know about that thing.
3 So I went back home and I waited until October. There was a person who
4 came from Montenegro with many people from there, and I wrote a letter.
5 I sent it to Ramush Haradinaj. He responded to me through relatives - I
6 don't want to give names - the response was that I don't know about these
7 things. I'm not aware. I have kept that letter at home. He said I'm not
8 aware about these things. I knew these as strong soldiers. Many other
9 good words. And he said you can come back, I can place you here or
10 somewhere else if you want. But it was a very turbulent time. OSCE was
11 there. There was a cease-fire between the KLA and the Serbs. We were
12 waiting during those days.
13 A neighbour came to me during those days, and he spoke of similar
14 cases that had happened to him. We had many plans to go to Rugova or to
15 go to Albania where people were being trained. That's what we had heard.
16 It was close to the new year. We had prepared some winter clothes when
17 they came at about 5.00 in the morning. We were surrounded. The Serb
18 forces surrounded us --
19 MR. SHIN: [Previous translation continues] ... break that. Your
20 Honours, I'm not sure if that is a suitable time to break. I'm sorry,
22 JUDGE PARKER: Because of our disrupted starting time I am
23 contemplating this session ending at about 20 minutes to which will be
24 the limit of our tapes and having only one break. So carry on for a
1 MR. SHIN: Thank you very much, Your Honour.
2 Q. Witness, sorry to have interpreted you. I think for this we can
3 go into open session, but just before we do, can I just one
4 clarification. You had mentioned that your cousin had been shot and the
5 translation claim through as 22nd of October 1998. Is that date correct?
6 A. No. It was the 22nd of December when he was killed.
7 Q. And just one more question in closed session before we go to
9 You mentioned -- you testified that you were in prison for three
10 and a half years. Could you tell us when it was that you were released?
11 A. I was released on the 26th of March. I was transferred --
12 transferred to the Dubrava prison and on it's 27th of March, I was
13 released. There was this agreement between Steiner and the leadership of
14 Kosovo and Batic, from Serbia. I don't know who else it was that they
15 had the agreement with.
16 MR. SHIN: If we could go back into open session, please.
17 JUDGE PARKER: Before then, could you determine when it was that
18 he was arrested.
19 MR. SHIN:
20 Q. Witness, could you please give us the date that you were
22 A. 22nd of December, 1998.
23 Q. And when you say you were released on the 27th of March, what
24 year was that?
25 A. I was released on the 27th of March 2002.
1 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Guy-Smith.
2 MR. GUY-SMITH: Yes. A quick observation: The witness's answer
3 commencing on page 26, line 10 and concluding at page 30, line 10, deals
4 with matters that I believe are outside of the geographic and temporal
5 bounds of the indictment, a matter that we have raised on previous
6 occasions, and would object to the answer and the information contained
7 therein on those grounds.
8 JUDGE PARKER: That is noted, Mr. Guy-Smith.
9 MR. SHIN: Yes, open session, please.
10 JUDGE PARKER: Open session.
11 [Open session]
12 MR. SHIN:
13 Q. Witness, without mentioning the specific dates or the name of the
14 place, could you tell us what happened when the Serb forces came to your
16 A. It was around 5.00 in the morning. The neighbours close to us,
17 next door, they told us that they had heard noises, noises, cars sometime
18 that morning. We were -- I was in my room on the first floor of the
19 house. There was only one room in that -- on that floor.
20 When I got up, I saw the police in the yard. I saw my father in
21 the yard. I saw them going into my uncle's house, breaking -- smashing
22 the windows, and I did not know what to do. We had some guns that we had
23 hidden in my uncle's -- my uncle's son's house. There were many. We had
24 -- there were many people there. There were around 50.000 people in the
25 place where I lived, in the village where I lived, together with my
1 relatives. I just put on my trousers and I sat down there. They came
2 into the room with their guns. They tied me and they threw me to the
3 floor just like many other people. The OSCE came, there were many
4 policemen in the room. I was tried to hide from them. I don't know for
5 how long I was lying there. There was this big arm chair that was on --
6 placed over my head. Then I was taken outside, placed against the wall.
7 I saw my uncle's son there as well. He was also tied. And the same --
8 the same thing happened again there. We were hit several times. We were
9 taken into a police Jeep. On the way to Peja we were stopped and taken
10 out of the Jeep and into a Zastava-type vehicle. There were some
11 civilians in that car and they asked me questions, were you a soldier?
12 And I said yes. And I know that they hit me several times. I was
13 covered in blood. From Tuesday, then it was Friday in the evening that
14 they were taken to the prison, if I'm not mistaken.
15 Q. Witness, where were you first taken?
16 A. In the prison in Peja.
17 Q. Now the persons in your home village who came to get you, you
18 said they hit you. Just to be clear. What do you mean by they? Who are
20 A. The Serbs, the policemen. There were civilians as well, but they
21 were all the same.
22 Q. Were you taken somewhere after you were the Peja police station?
23 A. To the Peja prison.
24 Q. And after that were you taken somewhere?
25 A. Yes. I stayed for some time in the Peja prison. But on the 3rd
1 of May, 1998, we were transferred to the Dubrava prison in a bus. This
2 was in 1999. There were people in that bus with their arms broken, with
3 their skull open. We were take be to the Dubrava prison. They called me
4 and two other people from my family, and they told us to step aside. We
5 stayed there in that prison until the 19th of May. NATO bombed on the
6 19th of May, Pavilion C where I was, and my uncle's son came to the cell
7 door and he said I think we are going to be free. It was very difficult
8 to open that door. The guards had all left. There were no guards, only
9 prisoners in the prison. There were some old people, elderly people, and
10 also people who had stayed there for a long time, people who had
11 committed crimes or people like us who were called terrorists.
12 Q. Witness, sorry to interrupt you there, just to be clear: Who was
13 calling you a terrorist at that point?
14 A. The Serbs, the guards in the prison. We were all terrorists for
16 Q. And after you had been at this prison, were you then taken
17 somewhere else? And please don't mention the specific date of your
18 transfer if there was a transfer.
19 MR. KHAN: Your Honour, just in a motive of assisting my learned
20 friend and hopefully that he can achieve his target of five more minutes,
21 I'm quite content for the witness to be let on all these issues. They
22 are not a matter of dispute between the parties and may save court time
23 and it may assist my friend to get things moving faster.
24 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Khan.
25 MR. SHIN: Thank you.
1 Q. Witness could you please mention the name of the prison you were
2 taken to next, from the prison?
3 A. Until the 10th of June -- from the 24th of May to the 10th of
4 June, we were transferred to Lipjan. On the 10th of June, in the
5 morning, again, we were taken in buses to Serbia, all of us. I was lucky
6 to remain in Nis together with my uncle. My uncle's son was taken to
7 Pograxhe although he was wounded. I don't know where they took the other
8 people. Pograxhe, Sem [phoen], Belgrade and other prisons.
9 Q. And witness, when you were originally arrested by the Serbian
10 forces you say that you were beaten. Have you recovered fully from those
12 A. They never stopped. I thought that maybe after the
13 investigation, after I went to prison it would be easier for me. That
14 they would go easier on me. But it happened in the prison as well. But
15 when the bombing, the bombing started, we did not even have bread to eat.
16 We were beaten daily inside there.
17 Q. And, Witness, how is your physical condition now? Are there any
18 injuries still remaining from those beatings?
19 A. I don't know. I haven't been to the doctor, to have a check-up
20 or anything. I have been a sports person before. Before the Milosevic
21 regime [as interpreted] it was easier for us. We had good food, we had
22 the right to go out in the yard in the prison and walk a little bit. We
23 could do some exercises, physical exercises, and there was enough food.
24 MR. SHIN: Your Honours, I have no further questions.
25 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Shin. We will have a break now and
1 resume at 10 minutes past 5.00.
2 --- Recess taken at 4.41 p.m.
3 --- On resuming at 5.13 p.m.
4 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Shin.
5 Before that happens, I understand that is a matter of
6 interpretation to be mentioned.
7 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter would like to make a correction.
8 It was before we broke last session. It was said, if I can find it on
9 the transcript. I said "before the Milosevic regime"; it should be
10 "after Milosevic fell".
11 MR. SHIN: It's page 35 at the very end of page 34 and page 35,
12 lines 1 and 2. Line 1, in fact.
13 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you. Thank you very much for making that
15 Mr. Shin.
16 MR. SHIN: And Your Honours, the Prosecution had no further
18 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you very much.
19 Cross-examined by Mr. Khan:
20 MR. KHAN: If it please Your Honour.
21 Q. Witness, my name is Karim Kahn along with lead counsel Michael
22 Mansfield we represent Fatmir Limaj who sits behind us. Do you
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Now hopefully you will be pleased to know, no doubt, that we
1 don't intent to detain you too long.
2 MR. KHAN: Your Honour, it may be of some assistance if I very
3 briefly detail the areas that I intend to ask questions about.
4 Q. And witness, they surround your initial joining of the KLA. I
5 will then ask you some questions about your alleged meeting with
6 Commander Celiku in Klecka. What I'm not going to ask you any questions
7 about is anything about Jablanica, simply because we don't know anything
8 about that. And that's the reason why -- while whilst not accepting what
9 you say, we're not going to ask you questions. Do you understand?
10 A. Yes, I understand you very well.
11 Q. Simply, we don't know what happened.
12 Now, Witness, it's correct, isn't it, that you joined the Kosovo
13 Liberation Army when you were 21 years of age. That's right, isn't it?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. And at the time you joined, you had no previous military
16 experience; is that right?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And I think you explained to Their Honours that the first
19 training you had was about a month after you first joined the Kosovo
20 Liberation Army in the middle of May 1998; is that right?
21 A. I said from mid-April to mid-May. This is how long the exercise
22 or the training lasted. But even before that, I took part in the front.
23 Q. Do you remember saying yesterday --
24 MR. KHAN: And Your Honours, it's LiveNote page 21, line 24 and
1 Q. Do you remember saying yesterday, when you were asked about
2 training that the training occurred "sometime in mid-May after I had
3 started to participate in other fronts as well." Do you remember saying
5 A. First you said yesterday. Yesterday I didn't say anything.
6 Secondly, I didn't start in the middle of May, but I am repeating it.
7 The training started in the middle of April.
8 Q. Witness, you're quite correct. Thank you for correcting me, I do
9 appreciate it. I meant, of course, on Friday before we broke up.
10 You said that the training occurred in mid-May "after I started to
11 participate in other fronts as well." Do you remember saying that as
12 well or not?
13 A. No. I am repeating. I didn't start, that the training started
14 in mid-May. It did start in mid-April. Maybe it's a mistake of
15 translation or some misunderstanding.
16 Q. But the training started after you joined the KLA, and started
17 after you had engaged in operations. Is that right or not?
18 A. Yes, that's right.
19 Q. And the training that you were given by the KLA, that took place
20 in the village -- in the villages where were you were based; is that
22 A. Yes. In those villages, and around those villages.
23 Q. There was no special KLA training centre, was there?
24 A. You're asking me there, in that place or somewhere else?
25 Q. In the place where you started your training, you say now in the
1 middle of April.
2 A. There were some special places for that. But in the village, in
3 the village where I was based, and in the -- other villages there were
4 some fields, pastures, gorges or parts of mountains where we were trained
5 in different military exercises.
6 Q. Yes. And apart from these fields and gorges, there was no
7 special centre with special facilities, specifically focused on training
8 a new army. That's correct, isn't it?
9 A. In the school of Zhabel village, a village near Jablanice, there
10 was a shooting ground which we ourselves built to be more or less in
11 conformity with the standards of the western armies. That was also a
12 place where we could exercise and train ourselves together with other
13 villagers. It was in the courtyard of the school of Zhabel village.
14 Q. And there was a huge problem of shortage of weapons when you
15 joined the KLA; is that right?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. I think, for example, you yourself were given a somewhat of an
18 antique, old Russian rifle; is that right?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And many of your comrades had old rifles and old hunting rifles.
21 It wasn't the best and most modern equipment, was it. People found and
22 used what they could.
23 A. Yes, they did use those kind of weapons that you mentioned.
24 Q. And because people and many of your comrades that you spoke to
25 joined for exactly the same reason that you had joined, in that you had
1 enough of this lengthy period of Serb domination, discrimination and
2 persecution and you decided that the only way you would get liberty was
3 to fight for your rights. Isn't that right?
4 A. Yes. But at the time this was what I thought and that's why I
5 did what I did.
6 Q. Just going back to training. You were never given any lectures
7 on the 1994 Geneva Conventions or the Protocols Additional thereto, or
8 The Hague Regulations, were you? It was very basic, crawling and
9 climbing and shooting your old weapons. But you weren't given lessons on
10 the laws of war, were you?
11 A. No. They did not. They taught us how to shoot with a gun, but
12 maybe I didn't get you right in when you mention those conventions and
13 regulations. Nobody taught us anything about that.
14 Q. You did get me right, thank you. And there was no discussion
15 about strategy or larger questions of the operation of a military
16 machine, was there?
17 A. No. I don't remember anyone telling us anything about the
18 strategy. I know that when I went to Albania to get arms, some people
19 used -- learned to use heavy arms like artillery or grenade-launchers.
20 In those places where some people were located, those people who received
21 the people that went there to get arms.
22 Q. Now, you say that the second occasion that you saw Celiku was
23 when you went to Klecka. That's correct, isn't it?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. And that was the day that Klecka was attacked; is that right?
1 A. The way I understand attack is rather different. I see it in --
2 two different points of view. There were many please in Kosova that were
3 shelled now and again. You might call that attack. That night that I
4 told -- spoke here about there was a shelling. But the attack with
5 infantry troops, if it happened it didn't happen on that day that I was
6 there. It might have taken place on another day.
7 Q. You remember giving a statement to the Prosecution in October
8 2004, do you?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And that statement was read back to you and you signed that
11 statement; is that correct?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And do you remember telling the Prosecution in that statement
14 that after your second meeting with Celiku, and for my learned friends
15 it's page 53 of the October statement, that night Klecka attack happened.
16 Do you remember saying that?
17 A. Yes. I said it even a little bit earlier.
18 Q. Are you aware that the Klecka attack in fact happened on the 25th
19 to 26th of August, 1998? Are you aware of that?
20 A. No.
21 Q. Do you say that Klecka -- do you know when Klecka fell?
22 A. No.
23 Q. Do you know if it fell on the day that you left Klecka? Could
24 that be possible or not?
25 A. No. I know that even that day it was attacked on the next day
1 too, but when it fell is I don't know [as interpreted].
2 Q. And you had been in Berisa I think three or four days before your
3 second meeting with Celiku. Is that correct, or have I got it wrong?
4 A. It is possible. I may have said two or three day, but I wasn't
5 sure. Much time has passed. I have moved about a lot, so I can't be
7 Q. Of course. We understand we're asking to recollect events that
8 happened many years ago, so please do take your time.
9 A. Okay.
10 Q. You had been sent to Berisa by your unit commander; is that
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And because of an order given to you by your unit commander, you
14 went to Berisa, didn't you?
15 A. Yes. He was with us, but I don't know whether he came up to
16 Berisa or whether he turned or came halfway. I'm not sure.
17 Q. Now, you say that the first time that you saw Celiku was on the
18 day or maybe the day after you arrived Berisa. That's also correct,
19 isn't it?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. And I think you say that what Celiku told you was simply if you
22 need help you can ask for help from Klecka; is that right?
23 A. Can you ask the question again, please.
24 Q. Of course. You say that in your conversation with Celiku he said
25 that you were acting in place of a missing commander and also that if
1 there was anything -- if you needed anything, you should contact Klecka
2 and get some help. Is that correct or not?
3 A. He didn't tell me that you are a commander. I understand it
4 differently. He said you will be responsible for this unit for the time
5 that the commander is away. And that if you need something, that is, if
6 you need some clothes or some equipment or so on, you can come to Klecke.
7 Was a person from the village. He had a car of Lada make and he was in a
8 way as if designated. To my recollection his name was Sadik he was
9 wearing a moustache then. He saw him several times. I didn't mention
10 this before in my statement. His duty was that if I needed something, he
11 should take me to Klecke.
12 Q. When you arrived in Berisa, is it fair to say to that things were
13 somewhat chaotic because of the ongoing Serbian offensive that had
15 A. It is possible that it may have been like that. I don't remember
16 well whether the meeting was that day or on the next day, but I remember
17 that in the evening we were on a hill. It might have been that night or
18 the next night. From there, we could see many villages, Arlat and other
19 villages which were burning. We could see the flames from there and the
20 fields around from Arlat along the road to Malisevo. Everything was
22 Q. And aside from all of the burning you could see, it's right,
23 isn't it, that the KLA from your experience was feeling extremely
24 stretched and disorganised because of the summer offensive that had
25 started. Is that fair or not?
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 A. It may have been disorganised in some places. In some places
2 there were shortages of munitions, yes.
3 Q. In total you were in Berisha for about three or four days. Would
4 it be fair to say that in fact you were not very familiar with the area
5 around Berisa, having been previously based in Jablanica. Is my
6 assessment fair?
7 A. I don't know whether it was three or four days. I can't tell you
8 for sure how long I stayed. And you are right when you say that I was
9 not very familiar with that region; I said this on Friday. I knew all of
10 the villages near that area were called the Berisa villages. I might
11 have been wrong, but that was what I believed then.
12 Q. Yes. And I think in your evidence on Friday you described
13 various zones of operation. For example, the Dukagjini -- the Dukagjini
14 zone and other zones. You had heard those names before, hadn't you?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. And this area around Klecka, you described that as the Berisa
17 area; is that right?
18 A. Yes, approximately so.
19 Q. And this territory this zone that you say existed called
20 Berisa --
21 MR. SHIN: Sorry, I think that's maybe misstating the evidence.
22 I don't believe the witness ever said that there was a zone called the
23 Berisa zone.
24 MR. KHAN: Your Honour, I'm referring to page 35 of LiveNote of
25 yesterday. Line 1 and 2.
1 JUDGE PARKER: Friday.
2 MR. KHAN: Friday, once again my mistake. Berisa was the name of
3 the whole territory. But, Your Honour, I could clarify it.
4 JUDGE PARKER: I understand stood that to be speaking of
5 geographic area rather than a particular zone. But to clarify it, I'm
6 sure would be helpful for all of us.
7 Thank you.
8 MR. KHAN:
9 Q. Do you know, Witness, what area that zone came under?
10 MR. SHIN: I'm really sorry to interrupt. If perhaps there could
11 be some more clarity about what zone we're speaking about when we say
12 "that zone" and what area that zone came under.
13 JUDGE PARKER: If you wouldn't mind I think it would be helpful
14 to make it a little more clear.
15 MR. KHAN: Your Honour, I'll do that.
16 Q. You say, Witness, that you went to Berisa. And you say that that
17 area was under Celiku. Do you know, according to you, what zone that
18 area was in?
19 A. I used this on Friday. I spoke about zones or territories or --
20 I don't know how to put it. And I said that I mentioned which leader was
21 responsible for that zone. When we talk about Celiku's zone, I said that
22 it had -- it comprised some villages around Malisevo or each beyond
23 Malisevo. In the Kline municipality I also said a that if we look at
24 Berisa only as a zone, meaning the place where I was based, this is what
25 I knew it to be. Regarding Celiku's zone, I said it comprises a part in
1 the -- in the vicinity of Malisevo, Pristina-Peja asphalt road on one
2 side and on the other side I thought it comprised Orahovac municipality,
3 Suva Reka municipality, because I knew who was operating where. Maybe I
4 was not very precise, and I'm not saying that everything I know now I
5 told here what I knew then.
6 Q. Witness, no doubt it's my fault. But if you remember on Friday
7 you talked about Ramush Haradinaj being the zone commander of Dukagjini.
8 You talk about Sylejman Salimi being in charge of Krasniqi and you talk
9 about Remi being in charge of Llap. Do you remember saying that on
11 MR. SHIN: I'm sorry to interrupt again, but I believe that is
12 misstating the evidence. If my learned colleague is referring to page 40
13 of the transcript, while the Dukagjini zone is named, there is no
14 reference specifically to the names -- I believe the two names were
15 Pastrik possibly and Llap. I'm sorry, it's not clear on the LiveNote
16 just now but I don't believe there is a reference to the names of those
17 zones there.
18 MR. KHAN: Well, Your Honour, that wasn't mentioned on Friday and
19 that's exactly the thrust of my cross-examination. So I would ask my
20 friend to be somewhat hesitant. Of course he does say --
21 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Khan, you started off to try and find out
22 about the Berisa area and what zone. I think we've lost that thought
23 somewhere along the road. Do you want to get back to that and clear that
24 up at least.
25 MR. KHAN:
1 Q. What zone do you say Celiku was in charge of?
2 A. I think I said even earlier, from Klecke. At least this is what
3 I knew it to be. The villages of Divlak, Novoselle, I thought that these
4 villages were under Celiku's control. Terpeze, Malisevo, even beyond
5 Malisevo. I repeated it several times. I said it comprises a village of
6 Orahovac, Suhareke municipalities, and on the side of the asphalt road to
7 Pristina. This is what I believed. I think that my answer is very
9 Q. Witness, do you know the name of that zone or not?
10 A. No. I knew it to be -- as Celiku's zone, not more than that.
11 Q. And not knowing the name of the zone, in fact you didn't -- you
12 don't know who was the commander of Lapusnik, do you?
13 A. No. I never said anything regarding Lapusnik's commander. I'm
14 putting it to you again. That this is what I knew then. I repeated it
15 several times. That was my knowledge.
16 Q. And had you no idea not knowing the identity of that commander of
17 Lapusnik whether or not he was a superior or subordinate or an equal to
18 Celiku; isn't that right?
19 A. I don't understand your question I'm afraid. Could you repeat it,
21 Q. You have no idea, do you, Witness, as to the identity of the
22 commander of Lapusnik; isn't that right?
23 A. What I already -- I already said and knew I have told you, and I
24 am repeating that as far as I knew, Celiku was the commander of that
25 zone. And the way I saw it was as Celiku's zone and not by any other
1 name, not like Ramush zone, like Dukagjin zone. So these were zones or
2 places which were very small in fact.
3 Q. Yes. And you don't know exactly how small Celiku's zone was, do
5 A. I didn't know how small or how big it was. I knew as I already
6 described it.
7 Q. And what you had picked up was largely based upon gossip and
8 rumour and what your general impression was in those few days that you
9 were in Berisa; isn't that right?
10 A. Before going to Berisa, I had been in that area many times. I
11 have heard from other soldiers, soldiers that I knew, some of them were
12 my friends. A friend of mine was in Jablanica. I don't know -- I don't
13 like to mention his name. I knew his pseudonym. He was in Celiku's
14 zone, and I have met that person in Terpeze.
15 Q. And in fact you said on Friday that you got information about the
16 commanders and their zones because information was transmitted and
17 broadcast through television and radio stations. Am I right that the
18 information you got from television was received after the war?
19 A. Regarding this information, that is, Celiku was a commander, I
20 didn't learn that after the war. It was given also during the war. But
21 I -- to stress my point, I said that I heard other soldiers speaking of
22 as such. But I also heard it through the radio stations, the television
23 and other sources.
24 Q. And just for the sake of clarity, you said on Friday that Celiku
25 did not introduce himself but you became aware of his name later; is that
2 A. You mean the true name or the pseudonym?
3 Q. The real name of Celiku.
4 A. No, the real name of Celiku I learned later.
5 Q. That was after the war; is that right?
6 A. I don't know for sure. It is possible that it was after the war.
7 I can't tell you exactly when. It was maybe after the war, because I was
8 in gaol.
9 Q. Is it correct that you became aware of his name perhaps at the
10 same time that you became aware of Qerqiz's name once you heard the
11 indictment and heard the TV reports and after their arrest and being sent
12 over to The Hague. Is that possible?
13 A. This is possible regarding Qerqiz, meaning that I learned this
14 much later. After the indictment made public or so. But regarding
15 Celiku I knew when I was in gaol, because we talked when we were in gaol
16 with other friends. His brother. We were together with his brother.
17 And he came several times to my room and I went to his room several
19 Q. And the brother that was -- of Mr. Limaj that was in prison with
20 you, that was Dimir Limaj; is that right?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. You never heard of a prison or a place where people were being
23 detained in Lapusnik at the time that you were in Berisa; is that
25 A. That's right. I didn't hear about that prison then.
1 MR. KHAN: Witness, thank you very much. I'm sorry that I have
2 taken slightly longer than I intended but hopefully you won't be too much
4 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you Mr. Khan.
5 MR. GUY-SMITH: I'm happy to commence, but Mr. Shin is on his
7 MR. SHIN: I'm sorry, Your Honour. Just if we could please have
8 a redaction from line 18 through 21, I believe. Yes. Sorry, down to 24.
9 JUDGE PARKER: The Chamber having great difficulty today because
10 our page numbering doesn't seem to accord with that of counsel.
11 MR. SHIN: It's -- if we could go briefly in private session I
12 will indicate what lines that is a little more clearly.
13 JUDGE PARKER: Private.
14 [Private session] [Confidentiality lifted by later order of the Chamber]
15 MR. SHIN: Your Honour, that's -- I believe it is it page 48,
16 line 18 or maybe just before on the previous line when it's sentence
17 begins: "But regarding Celiku I knew because we talked" -- from there
18 and then down to the last reference to his brother, which would take us
19 down to line 24, where the answer is "yes."
20 JUDGE PARKER: What is the reference to Celiku going to do?
21 MR. SHIN: In fact, Your Honour is entirely correct. If we could
22 begin with "His brother" on line 19.
23 JUDGE PARKER: And is that simply because they were together in a
25 MR. SHIN: Yes.
1 Your Honour, I'm sorry.
2 JUDGE PARKER: Well perhaps out of an abundance of caution.
3 MR. SHIN: Thank you, Your Honour.
4 JUDGE PARKER: We'll go to open session now and then Mr.
5 Guy-Smith who's been waiting anxiously in the wings.
6 [Open session]
7 Cross-examined by Mr. Guy-Smith:
8 Q. Good afternoon, sir. How are you doing? Are you all right?
9 A. I'm doing right -- very well, thank you.
10 Q. A moment ago you were speaking about such things as ammunition
11 and it's fair to say that during the entire time that you were fighting
12 there was always a shortage of ammunition, wasn't there?
13 A. I said there were shortages in some places, but not everywhere.
14 Q. Where you were, there was a shortage there, wasn't there?
15 A. I was in many places. Which place to you mean exactly?
16 Q. Well, starting at the beginning when you joined the KLA and you
17 were handed that old Russian sniper's rifle. At that point in time. You
18 didn't have a lot of ammunition with you, did you?
19 A. When I first went there and got that weapon, I had munitions for
20 that. They gave the munition along with the weapon to me.
21 Q. How many rounds did you have?
22 A. I didn't count the bullets but I had plenty of them.
23 Q. And did there come a time that you ran out of rounds from the
24 firing that you did?
25 A. That weapon was given to me when I was admitted to the KLA and I
1 used it for a few days during the training. Then I changed it with
2 another friend with Leopardi -- after asking Leopard. And then I got a
3 Kalashnikov which was taken from Albanian. And I had a bag full of
5 Q. When you needed further munitions, how did you get that?
6 A. Do you have any specific occasion in mind?
7 Q. Well, the first time you ran out of munitions when you were using
8 your Kalashnikov.
9 A. I never ran out of munitions personally. Because I went often to
10 Albania and therefore I had plenty of munitions for myself.
11 Q. How many times did you go to Albania during the summer of 1998?
12 A. I don't know exactly how many times.
13 Q. When you say that you went often, would that be more than ten
15 A. No, less than ten times. Seven or eight. I can't give you an
16 exact figure.
17 Q. And when you went to Albania, could you tell us of the first time
18 that you went to Albania, how long you were gone from Kosova?
19 A. The first time I went, I think I have mentioned it already, we
20 travelled during the night -- in the evening and during the night. And
21 it was sometime in the morning when we arrived in Prac village which was
22 known in Kosova as a place called Kulle e Sali Berishes the tower of Sali
23 Berishes. It is possible that we rested for a while and in the evening
24 we returned in -- to Kosovo again.
25 Q. And would it be fair to say that the other six or seven times
1 that you went to Albania you spent approximately the same amount of time
2 out of Kosovo, maybe a day or a night or two at the most. Is that fair?
3 A. In one instance when we went the purpose was to get arms for a
4 territory from Kline up to Istok whose population is mostly Catholics.
5 We went there two times. The first time I went with some friends. We
6 didn't find the weapons we were looking for so we didn't get many
7 weapons. We got only a few of them. So together with some friends we
10 arms to bring to Kosova. These lasted maybe a week or two weeks, until
11 he came, until we came back. And I know that when we came back, we fell
12 in an ambush at Rrasa e Zogut. There was fighting. One was killed, Kole
13 Mirdita was the name, from Drenas village up near Klina. And
14 unfortunately, we got along very few weapons, only those we were carrying
15 on our shoulders and a friend was injured. The others we left there, at
16 the border, the other weapons. That was maybe the longest time we spent
17 in Albania.
18 Q. If I might, Your Honour I believe there is a need for some
19 redaction based upon witness's last answer.
20 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, thank you.
21 MR. SHIN: Your Honour, if it's of any assistance, if it could be
22 from line 12 through line 14, that sentence. So after the word Tirana,
23 the sentence that appears after that.
24 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
25 MR. SHIN: Thank you.
1 JUDGE PARKER: That enough? Are you sure?
2 MR. SHIN: If we could just have a moment, please, Your Honour.
3 [Prosecution counsel confer]
4 MR. SHIN: I think that should be sufficient, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
6 MR. GUY-SMITH:
7 Q. You've indicated that you travelled in a fair number of different
8 areas in Kosovo and my question is now directed to whether or not you can
9 help us and identify for us whether or not there were any medical clinics
10 in the zones that you have discussed with us thus far. And I take it you
11 have the zones in mind, but that would the Llap zone, the Pastrik zone
12 and Dukagjin.
13 A. I don't know about Llap or about Pastrik. I know about Dukagjin
14 plateau. I know because it was there when I went to become a soldier.
15 There was an ambulance there to treat two or three injured. There was
16 also one in Irzniq village near Gllogjan. After that instance when my
17 friend was injured that I mentioned earlier, there was another village
18 near Gllogjan in Gramacel. There was fighting there and two other people
19 were injured and we took them to Irzniq, to that hospital that is I knew
20 it. And on the next day we got them back to the territory from where we
22 Q. I want to ask you a question in another area. You had mentioned
23 that at one point you were in a prison which was the Dubrova [sic]
24 prison. Correct?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. While you were in that prison, I take it you saw a fair number of
2 your fellow Albanians also at that prison. Is that a fair statement?
3 A. Yes, mainly most of them were Albanians with few exceptions.
4 Q. As you sit here today, can you tell us about how many Albanian
5 prisoners you saw at Dubrava?
6 A. Until the day of the bombing. I knew very few of them because I
7 was in the isolation. After the air strikes we came out in the yard of
8 the prison. Then I saw many Albanians. But I can't tell you exactly how
9 many. They -- they said then and even now that as much as we could count
10 with our friends there were about 1.000 persons detained there.
11 Q. Are you aware of the fact that the Serbs massacred a fair number
12 of Albanians at the Dubrava prison. Do you know about that?
13 A. Yes. They say that there are about 200 people killed altogether
14 by NATO and the Serbs. But from what we would gather there were about 18
15 killed from NATO, and about 170 or more were killed by the Serbs.
16 Q. And when you say 170 or more were killed by the Serbs, were those
17 people summarily executed, shot?
18 A. On the first day of the air strike, only three persons were
19 killed. And the Serbs used that. They through bombs, killed detainees
20 with snipers from the surrounding walls. I can cite two instances that I
21 witnessed myself. Once was when they told us to go near to the wall
22 where there was a corner, two walls met there, there was a border as if
23 they wanted to count them, us. The same person who called us as if to
24 count us because he said we will transfer to you another prison, he fired
25 at us with a hand mortar. And then fired at with us an automatic gun.
1 And they threw hand-grenades from both side of the walls at us. There
2 were many people killed and many injured. Whoever could flee fled. We
3 tried to find refuge in the cellar or some trenches or canals. After one
4 or two days, I think it was on the 23rd, we entered a cellar. In the
5 evening, we cooked some pancakes. We ate them because we were very
6 hungry. On the next morning when the day dawned, I saw them entering the
7 place wearing masks.
8 Q. And when you say you saw "them" entering the place wearing masks
9 are you referring to the Serb forces?
10 A. Yes. The Serb forces. We were about 20 persons hidden in this
11 cellar. And when we saw them entering the cell, they started to fire at
12 us. That cellar had some big cauldrons or some tubes to -- for the hot
13 water that ran -- that was used in the prison. It was very large cellar,
14 like this hall, and so we tried to hide behind those ventilators,
15 cauldrons or tubes. They fired bombs at us -- they through bombs at us
16 from the windows. After ten minute it is was full of smoke. We couldn't
17 see anything. Some of the tubes were broken. Some of the pipes were
18 broken and the water start to the fall and they started to kill people.
19 My cousin was injured because of a bomb and he is blind now because of
20 that injury. And he is not in -- in full possession of his mental
21 faculties. He cannot eat properly. He eats very little. Ten people
22 died. They were lying on the floor. Some of them I knew.
23 Q. And the tragedy that you just described to us is a result of
24 Serbian activity; correct?
25 A. Yes, of course.
1 MR. GUY-SMITH: Thank you.
2 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Guy-Smith.
3 Mr. Topolski.
4 MR. TOPOLSKI: May I make it clear that we on behalf of Isak
5 Musliu do not cross-examine on detainees or any issues surrounding this
6 witness's evidence regarding Jablanica, not upon the basis that we accept
7 it but on the basis that we are in the a position to challenge it, our
8 position, in essence, being precisely similar to that of Mr. Limaj.
9 Can we go into private session, please.
10 JUDGE PARKER: Private.
11 [Private session] [Confidentiality lifted by later order of the Chamber]
12 Cross-examined by Mr. Topolski:
13 Q. Sir, I represent Isak Musliu and I first want to ask you one or
14 two questions about your present position.
15 You told us on Friday that you are a serving officer with the KPS
16 and you protect government facilities; is that correct?
17 A. No. I am not -- I work in the Kosova police service, the
18 security division. Which is responsible for government, state, police
19 facilities for the courts and so on.
20 Q. Is that regarded in Kosova as an important possession?
21 A. For that, you have to take a test, a police test. There are some
22 people who examine the test to see whether you meet the criteria of
23 working in that service.
24 Q. Is it regarded as a position that has some prestige in Kosova?
25 A. Yes. I don't know what to say in answer to your question. I may
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 say it's regarded with some prestige because in fact there is a great
2 unemployment in Kosova.
3 Q. You told us on Friday that you have held this position for about
4 five months. Does it follow from that, that you obtained this position
5 around October of last year?
6 A. I went to school in Vushtrri in September. For two weeks we
7 underwent training. If I'm not mistaken, we started training on the 6th
8 of September, and I think it was on the 21st that we started to work, in
10 Q. You had been released from four years plus of gaol on about the
11 27th of March of 2003, hadn't you?
12 A. It was 2002. I saw it on the monitor it was put 2003 but it is
14 Q. It was put on the monitor because that is what you said. Let's
15 be clear about it: Were you released in March 2002 or March 2003?
16 A. 2002.
17 Q. You made, didn't you, two statements to the ICTY to this
18 Tribunal, and they are respectively dated dates in October 200, the 21,
19 22, and the 24th and then another statement on the 8th of December of
20 2004. Do you agree with those dates?
21 A. Yes, yes. October, December. I don't remember the dates.
22 Q. But then you had secured your job in the KPS, hadn't you?
23 A. I was working...
24 Q. Is there any connection between those two facts?
25 A. What connection do you have in mind?
1 Q. Did the fact that you had given statements to the ICTY
2 investigator in any way in any sense assist you with regard to the
3 prestigious job that you now have in Kosova?
4 A. I think even earlier. It's not that it is a highly prestigious
5 job, but given the high unemployment rate in Kosova it's not a bad job.
6 When I start to the give the statement I was working even before.
7 Q. Had you benefitted from any promotion in your job since giving
8 the statements to the ICTY?
9 A. What benefits do you have in mind?
10 Q. I think I said: Promotion. Have you received any promotion,
11 improvement in your position?
12 A. No.
13 Q. Finally on this topic and then we should be able to go into open
15 Did you approach the Office of the Prosecutor or did they
16 approach you to make statements?
17 A. No, it was not I who approached them. I think I have mentioned
18 that. But I may repeat it. They asked me to do that. The first time I
19 met them we met in my home. They came to me with a relative of mine and
20 they asked me whether I was willing to make a statement about what I saw
21 in the war, what I had done, about the time I spent in gaol, and so on,
22 and I made the statement that you have in front of you.
23 Q. Did anyone tell you how it was they were coming to you for a
25 A. No. A relative of mine who came with them, they called him. I
1 mean they have talked with him. It doesn't interest me what they
2 discussed. They came together and I made the statement.
3 Q. And finally on this topic, just yes or no, please. Within your
4 knowledge, is this relative of yours also someone who has made a
5 statement to the OTP, yes or no?
6 A. No. He's a person who -- through whom they came to me. That was
7 the only thing what he did. You asked me how I met with them, and that's
8 why I mentioned that relative of mine, because it was through him that I
9 met them.
10 Q. I want to move on, please, to deal with your dealings as you've
11 described them with the man you knew as Qerqiz. That's what I'm going to
12 deal with now. Do you understand?
13 JUDGE PARKER: Open or...
14 MR. TOPOLSKI: I'm sorry, that can be in open session.
15 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
16 MR. TOPOLSKI: I will repeat that in open session. Thank you.
17 [Open session]
18 Q. Yes, I'm moving on to deal with your dealings with Qerqiz. You
19 told us on Friday of being collected in a car in which there was Qerqizi,
20 which car took you and other man to Klecka. You recall, I expect,
21 telling us all about that on Friday?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. I first of all want to see if I understood your evidence as to
24 when this event took place. Just before you described that event to us,
25 you said at page 46 of the transcript for Friday at lines 4 and 5: "It
1 was a time when the Serb forces attacked several points that were
2 controlled by the KLA."
3 And then you went on to describe going to Terpeze and then this
4 collection by car that contained Qerqiz, the dark-red Golf.
5 Can I suggest -- or let me ask you rather than suggest anything:
6 What month of the year was it do you say when this car collected you to
7 take you to Klecka?
8 A. [No interpretation]
9 MR. SHIN: I'm sorry, if the interpreters could please repeat the
10 answer because it did not appear on the LiveNote.
11 MR. TOPOLSKI: Thank you, Mr. Shin. I was about to make the same
12 request. It broke up in my ear phones as well.
13 Q. Could you repeat the month, please, Witness as to when it was
14 that this car collected you to take to you Klecka containing Qerqiz?
15 A. It was the month of July. It is the same time that I was in that
16 area, or that territory.
17 Q. On the 25th and 26th of July, as part of the major Serb summer
18 offensive, the village of Lapusnik fell back into Serb hands. Had that
19 happened before you were collected in this car?
20 A. I think I have already mentioned that. I am not sure whether it
21 was on the same day, one day after I went to Berisa. The case of the
22 car, that is, when they came with the car, was maybe one or two days
23 after what I said earlier, after this instance. I cannot be precise.
24 Q. Well, I want you to try to be precise because my difficulty is,
25 you see, is my client has no recollection of this event whatsoever. So I
1 need you to help us when it is you say that alleged event occurred.
2 Now, had Lapusnik fallen or hadn't it?
3 A. This must have been after the fall of the Lapusnik gorge.
4 Q. Thank you. Now, you have a conversation in a car with Qerqizi,
5 you say, and talked about ordinary matters after they told you that
6 Celiku wanted to talk do you. What ordinary matters did you talk about
7 in this car journey to Klecka?
8 A. I don't know how to explain it to you briefly. I think I said it
9 on Friday. Usually when people meet we greet each other. We exchange
10 courtesy conversations, how are you, how are you getting on or some minor
11 joke. I can't be precise what we said. It was just a talk, normal
12 conversation between two people who meet.
13 Q. You see you could be precise about this when you met with the OTP
14 on the 21st and 22nd of October 2004. Because you were to tell them at
15 paragraph 52 of this statement that you made and signed as being truthful
16 that you got into the car and you were told not to interfere with local
17 affairs which was a reference to an incident involved two young women.
18 Now, did you have a talk about knowing in particular or a problem
19 regarding two young women? Which is it?
20 MR. SHIN: Sorry, Your Honour. Could the statement be put in
21 front of the witness if he will be cross-examined on the contents
23 MR. TOPOLSKI: Well the answer is of course it can. I wonder if
24 we could it in a shorthand way first to see if we can save time.
25 JUDGE PARKER: I think you can.
1 MR. TOPOLSKI: I'm so sorry, Your Honour, did I interrupt? I can
2 wait for the answer. My apologies.
3 Q. Witness, do you accept in a signed statement that you made to the
4 OTP in 2004 you told them that you got into the car and were told not to
5 interfere with local affairs? Do you accept that you said that? If you
6 don't, then I can put the statement in front of you.
7 A. Sir, I didn't say that we talked about that in the car. I said
8 in the car we talked about normal things. The talk you are referring to
9 occurred after we entered the headquarters. Maybe it is a mistake of
10 translation or something else.
11 Q. In that case I am going to have put the statement in front of
13 MR. TOPOLSKI: I wonder if he may see, please, the Albanian
14 version of the statement that he made dated the 21st, 22nd and 24th of
15 the October.
16 Q. I'm assuming it follows the same numbering. First of all by way
17 of identification, Witness, would you be good enough to look at the end
18 of that statement you have been given and see if your signature appears
19 on it above and then below a date of October 2004. No, it's above it.
20 It's the interpreter's signature that's appears below.
21 Is your signature on this statement?
22 A. What page?
23 Q. Underneath paragraph 93. Under neat the words "witness
24 acknowledgment." Do you see your signature there?
25 A. Yes. There is no signature here but I know it's not a question
1 of signature. I want to hear what I -- or to see what you put to me
2 earlier about that talk.
3 MR. SHIN: I'm sorry, if I may of assistance to Mr. Topolski. It
4 would be the English version that has the signature if that is helpful to
6 MR. TOPOLSKI: Mr. Shin should have stopped me earlier. Thank
7 you so much.
8 Q. Yes, I'm going to take you right to it, Witness. Paragraph 52,
9 please. Begins with the words "After two or three days." Do you have
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. "After two or three days, Qerqiz whose name I came to know later
13 to be Isak Musliu came to me with another soldier and told me Celiku had
14 called me. I got into his car and went with him to Celiku." Are you
15 following me?
16 A. Yes, I am, certainly.
17 Q. Good. "Initially it was a formal type of conversation. Then he
18 specifically told me not to interfere in local affairs and told me that I
19 was called for a specific job and when I will be needed I will be
20 informed. We had these arguments. I remember Shukri Buja was also
21 present in that room and there was some other soldiers I do not know."
22 So it seems a little confusing, so I need your help. It seems to
23 be that you are saying here that in a car with Qerqizi you were not to
24 interfere with local affairs. Do you remember saying that now?
25 A. Yes, sir, I can repeat it now. It is well written here, after
1 two, three days it means together with another soldier, Qerqiz came and
2 told me that Celiku wanted me. I went in the car and went to Celiku.
3 That is something else. Then there is full stop. Initially it was a
4 formal type of conversation. Then he specifically told me not to
5 interfere in local affairs and told me that I was called for a specific
6 job and when I will be needed I will be informed. There is a full stop.
7 It doesn't specify whether this talk took place. That is why I am here I
8 can explain to you. Even though there are some mistakes of translation,
9 and -- it's a problem one things are translated from one language into
10 another. Because I talked with Qerqiz but with the other person who took
11 me with his car. So that conversation was initially, as I said, a formal
12 one. And then it ended look that. You don't need to deal with that and
13 I didn't.
14 Q. You did have a conversation in a car sharing it with Qerqiz, did
15 you? You're absolutely sure about that?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. In light of that answer, yes, I would now like you to see the
18 second version of your Albanian statement dated 8 December 2004, please,
19 and I'd like you to turn to paragraph 20 of it.
20 Again, with the kind help of Mr. Younis. And now I put my thanks
21 to him on record for all to see and hear.
22 Now this is a second statement that you made which is really in
23 the form of questions and answers and I want you first of all to go to
24 paragraph 19 and the question the investigator is asking you is this is
25 it not: When did you first meet Qerqiz. Can you describe how he looked
1 at the time.
2 Do you see that question, paragraph 19?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. You never gave an answer to his description but we've leave that
5 for a moment. Let's look at your answer. The first time I met him was
6 when he came to me when I was situated on a hill above Terpeze and told
7 me to follow him to Klecka to meet Commander Celiku.
8 Witness, you were never in a car with Qerqizi, were you?
9 A. I have been in a car with Qerqizi. The reason why I didn't
10 answer the question in paragraph 19 when you just put, how can you
11 describe it, you can find it in the other statement where I have said I
12 had described him approximately how he looked to me then and I may repeat
13 it to you and why he got the pseudonym, because of a movie that was being
14 played in Albanian television. There was a character in that movie whose
15 name was Qerqiz Topoli.
16 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... because as a Serbian police
17 officer you should know better than to try and avoid answering question.
18 The problem here is that you say in second statement that you were told
19 to "follow him," not get in a car with him and a have a conversation. So
20 your story has changed and I'm suggesting to you you were never in a car
21 with him, at all.
22 MR. SHIN: Your Honour. That is -- the counsel is arguing with
23 the witness. If the witness -- the witness can be given an opportunity
24 to answer the question and explain. Secondly, the --
25 JUDGE PARKER: I think that had been done. And where Mr.
1 Topolski had reached was with reason, Mr. Shin.
2 MR. SHIN: I accept your ruling, Your Honour.
3 The second point is that on paragraph 20 there is actually an
4 answer to the description issue that appears there. The witness does
5 answer the question about the description and perhaps my learned
6 colleague has simply neglected to look down to the bottom of paragraph
8 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.
9 MR. TOPOLSKI:
10 Q. Could you answer my question now why it says that you followed
11 him in a car whereas you said in your first statement that you were in a
12 car with him and have told this Tribunal you were in a car with him?
13 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Topolski, it doesn't quite say that. It said
14 he was told to follow him. You're assuming that occurred, perhaps.
15 MR. TOPOLSKI: Well, Your Honour --
16 JUDGE PARKER: It's getting late in the date I know.
17 MR. TOPOLSKI: It's getting late and if it's a bad point I'm not
18 going to labour it.
19 JUDGE PARKER: It may be a perfectly good point but let's get to
20 it fairly and squarely.
21 MR. TOPOLSKI: Your Honour may have just spoiled it.
22 Q. Were you in a car with Qerqiz, yes or no?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. And you do say that he had a beard at that time later on in
25 paragraph 20. It was a very substantial beard he had, wasn't it, this
1 man, Qerqiz, a big beard?
2 A. The beard, the big beard you say, might be one -- one span of a
3 hand, it might be half a metre, I don't know. It was a beard, a full
5 Q. You described in -- I'm' moving away from that to my last topic
6 very briefly.
7 You described in your evidence earlier on today regarding your
8 arrest by the Serbs in, I think, December of 1998 and your subsequent
9 imprisonment. It's right, isn't it, that you made a long statement to
10 the Serbs in December of 1998?
11 A. No. I didn't give them any long -- any statement, but I don't
12 know myself what -- what statement is about. I never read any statement.
13 I only signed something they told me to sign and where it was signed as
14 they told me.
15 Q. Well, again, I don't want to waste yours or anyone else's time
16 unnecessarily. Disclosed to us is a five- or six-page statement
17 allegedly signed by you that contains a lot of information regarding
18 names and details of terrorists as they're described, I think. Are you
19 saying that this statement was written for you and you simply signed it?
20 A. I think I said here that even today I don't what this statement
21 comprised. I was forced to sign it after I was arrested. I know what
22 you mean.
23 Q. I don't put it to you in those circumstances. I accept of course
24 what you say about it.
25 And finally I just want to ask you this: On Friday you gave
1 evidence regarding a further meeting that took place in a room in Klecka,
2 do you remember this, at which meeting people such as a you say Gazetari
3 and Kumanova were present at which there was a discussion regarding units
4 and reports and so on. Do you remember telling us at some length about
5 this meeting on Friday?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. You would have heard Mr. Shin, the gentleman who was asking you
8 question on Friday and today answer a question from me at the end of
9 Friday's proceedings when he indicated to the Court that it was the view
10 of the Prosecution that Qerqiz was present at that meeting. I just want
11 you to confirm, please, something that you have told us -- you've told
12 us, not Mr. Shin -- today. It's your evidence, is it, that you are not
13 at all sure whether Qerqiz was at that meeting or not. Is it that the
15 A. Sir, I cannot tell you whether he was or not inside that room
16 where we had the meeting with Celiku. He might have been, he might not.
17 He might have enter that the room and he might have left that room. I
18 didn't follow that, as far as I remember.
19 Q. That meeting itself would have had to have happened, wouldn't it,
20 after the fall of Lapusnik on the 25th or 26th of July. Do you agree?
21 A. Yes, I think so too.
22 Q. So perhaps we can leave things with you on a note of agreement,
23 Witness, if we can. Would you agree with this: That you, as you sit here
24 now, cannot be at all sure whether or not Qerqiz was there. Can we agree
25 that is the position between us?
1 A. What do you mean "there"?
2 Q. In the meeting, participating in the meeting. That's what I
4 A. I think I explained it earlier. If you want, I can repeat it.
5 Q. Oh no. I certainly don't want you to repeat yourself. Thank
6 you. That's all I ask.
7 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Topolski.
8 Mr. Shin.
9 MR. SHIN: No questions from the Prosecution, Your Honour.
10 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Shin I ventured that we would break at about
11 ten to but there seems little point if trying to spend five or six
12 minutes getting in a new witness and getting going. So we will resume
13 tomorrow --
14 MR. SHIN: Thank you, Your Honour.
15 JUDGE PARKER: -- at 2.15 unless a need for special sitting to be
16 squeezed in and delay us yet again.
17 Sir, I'm pleased to be able to tell that you that is the
18 completion of your evidence. You are now free to leave and return to
19 your home. We thank you for your assistance in coming here and spending
20 the time that you had to spend here.
21 We will adjourn now and resume at 2.15 tomorrow.
22 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 6.45 p.m.,
23 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 15th day of
24 March, 2005, at 2.15 p.m.