1 Tuesday, 11 September 2007
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 2.14 p.m.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: While the Judges -- while the witness is coming in,
6 I'll deal with three administrative matters. There are -- there is a
7 third motion to add exhibits by General Ojdanic. There is no objection
8 from the Prosecution to this, and therefore that application is granted.
9 [The witness entered court]
10 JUDGE BONOMY: There's then a fourth one and, Mr. Stamp, are you
11 aware of this fourth application because, if possible, we would like to
12 deal with it quite quick --
13 MR. STAMP: It can be dealt with quite quickly, perhaps tomorrow
14 if we could --
15 JUDGE BONOMY: If you could look at it and tell us what your
16 position is or even e-mail a position, that can be dealt with. And
17 lastly, there is an application on behalf of Mr. Sainovic to specify
18 accurately in a substitute sheet the sections of a video which were
19 played. I doubt if there can possibly be any argument that that's the
20 appropriate course to follow.
21 MR. STAMP: On the basis of what is being represented here, I
22 doubt it myself, but I would prefer to deal with it formally and respond.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, if you could look at that also and if you can
24 indicate the position tomorrow, that would be helpful.
25 MR. STAMP: That will be done.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
2 Good afternoon, Mr. Gajic.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good afternoon.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: We will continue in a moment with cross-examination
5 by Mr. Ivetic, where we left off yesterday. Please again bear in mind
6 that the solemn declaration you made at the beginning continues to apply
7 to your evidence today.
8 Mr. Ivetic.
9 MR. IVETIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
10 WITNESS: BRANKO GAJIC [Resumed]
11 [Witness answered through interpreter]
12 Cross-examination by Mr. Ivetic: [Continued]
13 Q. Good day, General Gajic. I would like to take up where we left
14 off yesterday and the area I was about to go into. I'd like to focus your
15 attention on the briefing of the staff of the high command memorialized in
16 Exhibit 3D721, and that would be page 2 of the English and page 2 of the
17 B/C/S or Serbian as well. And, General, I'm going to go ahead and ask you
18 the question and you can, if need be, review the documents once they come
19 up on the screen.
20 During this briefing which is on the 3rd of April, 1999, you are
21 recorded as saying that your service had information about paramilitaries,
22 saying volunteers had come to Kosovo as members of the reserve force of
23 the MUP, and that 32 such volunteers had been sent back from Kosovo for
25 Now, what precise paramilitary or volunteer formations are you
1 talking about at this briefing on the 3rd of April, 1999?
2 A. Yes. The reserve MUP was not referred to. This has to do with
3 volunteers from the 175th Infantry Brigade. Among them was a group of
4 volunteers from -- headed by Vlado Zmajevic, who had committed a crime in
5 the village of Zegra in the municipality of Gnjilane where eight civilians
6 were killed. There was looting as well. These civilians were robbed,
7 their money, jewellery, et cetera was taken. As far as I can remember
8 they even torched their houses. This group was identified, arrested, a
9 criminal report was filed, they were all convicted. Vlado Zmajevic was
10 sentenced to 20 years in prison and the rest got one-year prison sentences
11 and more than that. There was a total of seven individuals involved.
12 Then the commander of the army, General Pavkovic, since there were
13 25 other volunteers there too, so it's a total of 32, they behaved in
14 contravention of military regulations and international regulations. They
15 were returned from the unit. They were returned to the centre in the
16 village of Medja near Nis, and they were sent away. Another measure was
17 taken --
18 Q. [Previous translation continues]...
19 THE INTERPRETER: Could counsel please wait for the interpretation
20 to finish.
21 MR. IVETIC:
22 Q. -- If you like we can discuss in detail later and I have some
23 questions on that. What I'm focusing on so there's no mistake in the
24 translation I'll read the section to you. The part of your briefing that
25 begins, the second page on page 2 of the Serbian.
1 [No interpretation]
2 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: It is too fast and we don't
3 have the text.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Ivetic, the interpreters say you are reading
5 too quickly and they don't have the text to follow.
6 Could you start again, please.
7 MR. IVETIC: Sure.
8 Q. General, I'll start again.
9 [Interpretation] "There are problems concerning the territory with
10 paramilitary formations. There are problems -- there is information that
11 there are volunteers who had come to Kosovo and Metohija without the army
12 being aware of it, and that is the MUP reserve forces."
13 A. Yes, we had information to that effect. Now I cannot remember
14 specifically what this was about, but we did have this intelligence about
15 it. And certainly that would not have been said had we not had that kind
16 of information, and there is also -- I do apologise. There is a proposal
17 here to make the MUP aware of this, and I think that we did inform the MUP
18 about this but that we did not give an answer.
19 Q. [Previous translation continues]...
20 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note --
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Ivetic, you're continuing too quickly. You
22 must allow us -- even where you're speaking different languages -- well it
23 should normally happen but you seem to be jumping in with your question
24 before the answer is translated.
25 MR. IVETIC: Sorry, Your Honour, I'm not listening to the English
1 translation. Maybe that would help.
2 Q. Now, General, given the date of this briefing as being the 3rd of
3 April, 1999, and given that of the matters you have testified about that
4 your service had knowledge of, the Skorpions in Podujevo, that event that
5 occurred at the end of March, could be the only paramilitary group that
6 your service had knowledge of based upon your testimony these past several
7 days. Isn't that correct?
8 A. Well, not quite, not fully correct. You are right on one thing
9 concerning the Skorpions paramilitary group, but we also had information
10 that proved to be correct later in relation to one of Arkan's groups. At
11 the meeting held on the 17th of May at the office of President --
12 then-President Milosevic, which was confirmed to us by Rade Markovic, head
13 of the state security sector, he confirmed both. And thirdly, we had
14 information about a group, a paramilitary group, that had come from
15 Republika Srpska whose head was Nedeljko Karasek, nicknamed Legenda, who
16 before the war was head of the special anti-terrorist units of
18 Q. We'll get to all that later, sir, but this is April we are talking
19 about. You did not find out about the Arkan units until your meeting May
20 the 17th, is that correct, or should I say is General Vasiljevic correct
21 when he testified to that?
22 MR. STAMP: I'm not sure if General Vasiljevic --
23 MR. IVETIC: I'll strike that part of the -- I'll strike that part
24 of the question I think it is ...
25 Q. Is it correct, sir, that you only found out about the Arkan
1 members of the JSO during the meeting with President Milosevic on the 17th
2 of May, 1999, some two months after this briefing took place?
3 A. No, earlier on we had information about Arkan, but it was hard to
4 check it; however, we did have information that he was down there in
5 Kosovo -- in actual fact, in Kosovo Polje, where there was a training
6 centre. That is what our knowledge was. Then on the 17th of May we said
7 that and, as I've already said, Rade Markovic claimed to us that that was
8 correct, and he explained how all of this went. But we'll probably get to
9 that later.
10 Q. Well, we'll deal with the May 17th meeting later, but let's talk
11 again about April. What were your sources for this information about
12 paramilitaries in the reserve force of the MUP?
13 A. Well, these were operative sources. Among them were some persons
14 from these same paramilitary units, because these are paramilitary units
15 that appeared in 1991 and they went through Croatian and Bosnian theatres
16 of war. So we intensively followed their activity because very often they
17 even acted vis-a-vis the army. They tried to recruit some soldiers and
18 even officers to join them. We had to follow that in order to prevent
19 that, because then and particularly later we had a precise position;
20 namely, not to allow the establishment of paramilitary formations in the
21 Army of Yugoslavia.
22 Q. So you're saying that this information did not come from your
23 security organs in the field, but rather from contacts that your service
24 had with paramilitaries?
25 A. That means from the security organs who had contacts with
1 individuals who were members of these paramilitary formations; that is to
2 say, security organs -- I mean, they were their operative sources.
3 Q. Which particular security organs? Where were they located? Were
4 these just general rumours or were there specific facts from specific
5 persons in specific locations?
6 A. Specific facts from specific individuals in specific locations. I
7 will just tell you as far as the paramilitary unit of Slobodan Medic,
8 Boca, is concerned, since most of the people had been recruited from the
9 territory of Vojvodina, then that was under the jurisdiction of the 12th
10 counter-intelligence group, and they covered the territory of Vojvodina
11 and they had very good positions there, very good contacts. They sent
12 reports and even they had some recorded conversations, intercepts; that is
13 to say that there is reliable information and information that had been
14 checked out.
15 Q. Sir, can you help me out, how many kilometres are there between
16 Vojvodina and Kosovo? And are you telling me that the security organ in
17 Vojvodina followed the happenings of this group in Kosovo?
18 A. I did not understand it or I wasn't specific enough. The security
19 organs, the ones that I referred to in the territory of Vojvodina, they
20 followed their activity in collecting, organising, and sending persons to
21 Kosovo. And the counter-intelligence organs in Kosovo had the task of
22 registering their presence in the territory of Kosovo and trying to see
23 what it was that they were doing there. It was a bit difficult to
24 establish that, but that is what their task was. So there was this
25 coordination from the beginning to the end, if I can put it that way, to
1 try to gain full insight into their presence and their activities.
2 Q. Okay. Now, if you already knew about these Skorpions in Podujevo
3 as of the 3rd of April, then why is it, sir, that it took until May the
4 13th for your service to prepare 3D1059, the information report giving
5 info about a crime that occurred on the 31st of March and that the
6 Skorpion -- the so-called Skorpions, actually the reservist SAJ were
7 ordered out of Kosovo according to that information by the commander of
8 the 334th Brigade of the VJ?
9 A. I don't know where you got this information, the 4th of April.
10 They were first there in March, and on the 31st of March they committed
11 this crime in Podujevo when they killed ten children and two adults. That
12 is when they were removed to Prolom Banja. We had some information, and I
13 also had the briefing at the staff of the security -- of the General
14 Staff, but we in addition to that informed the State Security Service.
15 Very often this was in the following form. The chief of the security
16 administration called the persons in charge in the security administration
17 and asked what this was all about; however, we never received an answer --
18 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: We cannot hear the witness
19 because there is background noise from the other microphones.
20 MR. IVETIC:
21 Q. [Previous translation continues]... Because I will have very
22 interesting testimony from General Vasiljevic to present to you.
23 Now, with respect to --
24 JUDGE BONOMY: So you're not seeking an answer to that question?
25 MR. IVETIC: Yeah, we could spend some time on it now. I was
1 trying to move along.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: All right.
3 MR. IVETIC: But let's bring up 3D1059.
4 Q. And while we're waiting for that I will repeat the question.
5 General, if as you have said the briefing from the 3rd of April before the
6 high command, the chief of the high command, dealt in part with the
7 Skorpions, that is to say that you had operative information about the
8 Skorpions, these reservist SAJ members that were former Skorpions, as of
9 that date why did it take so long for your service to prepare this
10 exhibit, this information sheet on May the 13th?
11 MR. IVETIC: That's not the one.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That is to say that we provided
13 information in succession of this problem and that we had information
14 about Slobodan Medic, Boca; however, it was hard to check that. Maybe
15 I'll be a bit cynical when I said that Slobodan Medic, Boca, never
16 reported to the service that he was going to Kosovo, so this was strictly
17 confidential, secret. They did not go down there to wage war; they went
18 down there to loot. Because the information of Slobodan Medic, Boca,
19 dated back to 1991 --
20 MR. IVETIC:
21 Q. [Previous translation continues]... If you do we're going to lose
22 sight of what we're looking for and I appreciate maybe that you would like
23 to perhaps obscure things, but I would like to get to the truth of
24 matters. Now, let's focus on this particular -- it's actually 3D1055, I
1 A. I do apologise to you. I have to say something to you --
2 Q. [Previous translation continues]... In 1992, in the -- during the
3 time-period of the conflict elsewhere, the Skorpions were under the
4 command of VJ General Loncar; isn't that correct?
5 A. That's not correct.
6 Q. Is it correct that the Skorpions were disbanded in 1996 before the
7 Kosovo conflict even began?
8 A. I don't know what that means, disbanded. They were so mobile
9 that -- and they were so well-connected, that at every moment they could
10 rally together quickly. Perhaps they were formally disbanded.
11 Q. Well, maybe -- you said you were following them, were they
12 disbanded in 1996 or not if you were following them so intensively as you
14 A. You keep insisting. Let me answer. Formally, they were
15 disbanded, but they were always prepared at any point in time to rally
16 together and to be engaged.
17 Q. Okay. Now, again, if you knew about the Skorpions and the
18 incident on the 31st of May -- excuse me, 31st of March, and were
19 referring about it in April, what was the reason to write the document
20 which is now up on the screen, 3D1055, all the way in May, May 13th of
21 1999, essentially recycling the same information that you had in the
22 beginning of April?
23 A. Because we wanted to be 100 per cent sure about what we were
24 reporting the Chief of Staff of the Supreme Command about; and from what I
25 know this information was also sent to the then-President Slobodan
2 Q. Now, that wasn't that hard. Now we can move to another aspect of
3 this group, these reservist SAJ, we had a former Skorpion member and a SAJ
4 reservist testify here under oath for the Prosecution, it was
5 Mr. Stoparic, he was an eye-witness to the Podujevo incident and he states
6 at transcript 748 lines 15 to 21 that the SAJ senior officers tried to
7 render assistance to the wounded Albanians and that then the SAJ commander
8 Tutinac himself angrily ordered them a back to Serbia this was at
9 transcript page 749 line 3 to 750, line 17, this all occurred on the 31st
10 of March. Did your information from your operative sources or security
11 organs include these facts about the actions of the MUP superior officers
12 in condemning the killings and disciplining those involved?
13 A. It is correct, it's just that I believe that it's not Mr. Tutinac.
14 His name is different. I think that it was General Trajkovic in person
15 who commanded the special anti-terrorist units at the time, and it is
16 correct that after the event he intervened urgently and sent them to
17 Prolom Banja.
18 Q. Sir, if I can -- first of all, I'm telling you what Mr. Stoparic
19 testified to. If you think that you know better than he what he
20 eye-witnessed, that's a different story. If I refresh your recollection,
21 wasn't Trajkovic wounded several days before this and therefore not in the
22 field, but recovering, I believe, in the hospital with a wound where the
23 persons with him had been killed?
24 THE INTERPRETER: Mr. Ivetic is kindly asked to slow down when
25 asking questions.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] [Previous translation continues]...
2 Is not the main thing whether it is this person or that person. I agree
3 that measures were taken immediately from a high position from SAJ for
4 them to return to Prolom Banja, that is correct.
5 MR. IVETIC:
6 Q. Well, sir, the particular facts and details are important to us,
7 especially what your service knew and what it reported when it makes such
8 grandiose claims of problems of paramilitaries. Because from the
9 testimony Here you're talking about two incidents both of which were
10 processed by the authorities and that's why it's important. Now, let me
11 ask you this Mr. Stoparic went on at page 771, line 21 through 22, in
12 particular, but throughout his testimony, to explicitly state: "I was a
13 SAJ reservist with regular documents about my status."
14 And this was something he said he was proud of. Now, am I correct
15 that the information from your sources indeed verifies Mr. Stoparic's
16 testimony that these former Skorpion members who were in the SAJ reserve
17 were all SAJ reservists with documentation?
18 A. Yes, Arkan and all of his people also had MUP IDs and IDs of the
19 State Security Service.
20 Q. [Previous translation continues]... Did Arkan and his men have
21 MUP IDs?
22 A. I know for a fact that in 1994 and 1995 this was true; as for
23 later, I don't know, but I assume that they did have that.
24 Q. [Previous translation continues]... Speculating I should say ...
25 A. [In English] No comment.
1 Q. All right. Am I correct that the information that your service
2 had is that Arkan's men never had documentation from the RJB, the "Resor
3 Javne Bezbednosti"?
4 A. [Interpretation] I don't know that. It was happening in 1998 and
5 1999 if they had documents, but I do know -- please, I do know that on the
6 17th of May, Rade Markovic confirmed everything that we had and presented
7 at a meeting on the 17th of May in front of President Milosevic and the
8 generals --
9 Q. [Previous translation continues]... We'll get to that May 17th
10 meeting. I asked you a specific question about the SAJ reservists that
11 were formerly Skorpions. Rather than answer my question, you chose to
12 move on to Arkan. Now, I'm more than happy to explore Arkan because I
13 have some material here about that, but I would ask that you please answer
14 my questions and we'll go through this a lot quicker and a lot easier.
15 Now, just to finish up with this Arkan issue that you have opened
16 up, I'm going to ask you -- you say you don't know about 1998, et cetera,
17 we know that. We know that your knowledge only covers 1994 and 1995.
18 You've already answered that. During 1994 and 1995, isn't it a fact that
19 Arkan's men never had documentation from the RJB "Resor Javne
20 Bezbednosti", yes or no?
21 A. Which year?
22 Q. Well, you said you knew about them having IDs in 1994 and 1995, so
23 I'm limiting my question to those two years, General.
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. [Interpretation] Yes, that they did have documentation from the
1 RDB or not, is that what you're trying to say?
2 A. Yes, they did have it. We even had examples. We had those
4 Q. [Previous translation continues]...
5 THE INTERPRETER: The counsel needs to wait until the end of the
6 translation. Perhaps he can put his headphones on.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Ivetic, you'll need to put on your headphones
8 and listen to the translation because I haven't alerted you as often as
9 the interpreter has mentioned the issue of speed. So please allow the gap
10 before asking the next question.
11 MR. IVETIC: Well, I think I have to clarify something. It looks
12 like the transcript -- at least the interpretation of my -- of my Serbian
13 as RDB, I actually asked about the RJB, so perhaps I have to ask that
14 question of the witness again to make sure we're on the same page because
15 he might have answered the way I expected him to answer instead of the way
16 I thought he'd answered.
17 Q. Is it your information that the Arkanovci had documentation only
18 from the RDB in 1994 and 1995, not the RJB?
19 A. It was connected to the MUP. It was just that the RDB is the
20 other MUP line. There is the RJB and there is the RDB, but their IDs were
21 from the RDB, you are right there.
22 Q. I apologise, then it was a translation error, I think, although I
23 was listening to the Serbian and still thought it was different but we'll
25 Now, if we can get back to my question - and I'll beg you to
1 answer it - all of these former Skorpions in Podujevo of whom you had
2 information were all legitimate, documented reservist SAJ police; isn't
3 that correct?
4 A. I don't know that.
5 Q. Well, then, let me -- hold on one second then. I think we'll move
6 on to another exhibit. First of all, sir, let me ask you, given your
7 definition of paramilitaries that you used the other day, yesterday I
8 think it was, on questioning from Judge Bonomy, if someone in uniform is
9 formally and legally a member of the MUP, then they cannot be called a
10 paramilitary, isn't that correct, since the MUP is a legitimate state
12 A. Correct.
13 Q. Thank you. Now, you say that you don't have any information that
14 these persons in Podujevo, these Medic people, Boca people, were reservist
15 members of the MUP.
16 MR. IVETIC: I would ask for Exhibit 6D988 to be brought up and in
17 advance I'll bring to everyone's attention that this is a document that we
18 recently uploaded and do not have English translation for, so I'll have to
19 have either myself or the witness read relevant portions of it and we'll
20 submit it for identification purposes upon receival of an official
22 Q. Now, sir, since we don't have an English translation of this
23 document, could you please identify this document and tell us if, in fact,
24 you ever saw it before taking into account at the bottom of the document
25 it says: [Interpretation] "For Colonel Gajic."
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. [In English] Okay. And is this a report from your security organ
3 within the 3rd Army command dated the 16th of May, 1999?
4 A. Yes, the security section of the 3rd Army command.
5 Q. Okay. And could you please, sir, so that I don't make any
6 mistakes, read for us the two middle paragraphs that deal with these
7 individuals led by Boca Medic, the information that you had in May of
9 A. The part that begins: "Colonel Sredojevic" or the part that
10 begins: "We are also in possession."
11 In paragraph 2 it says: "Colonel Sredojevic, who is mentioned by
12 the security department of the Prokuplje Platoon had telephone contact
13 with Vucicevic who is chief of the Prokuplje MUP, who through his superior
14 intervened and said that everything is legal and that there would be no
15 problems. We also have checked information that
16 Major-General Djakovic Milan an operative in the 3rd Army command
17 recognised in the said group a certain Slobodan Medic, a.k.a. Boca," it
18 says here Goca but it's Boca, "who he asked what his task was that he came
19 for, to which the said person replied that he had come on the order of the
20 MUP General Rodja."
21 And then it goes on to say: "We are continuing with further
22 checking and gathering of information."
23 Q. Okay. Okay. Does that refresh your recollection as to whether
24 you had operative information that, in fact, these individuals under
25 Boca Medic were, in fact, reservists within SAJ?
1 A. No.
2 Q. All right. No sense in beating a dead horse. Let me ask you
3 this: General Rodja from the MUP that is mentioned, do you at least have
4 knowledge of who that individual is, what the nickname -- what the full
5 name of that individual is; and is that the RJB chief and deputy minister
6 of interior General Vlastimir Djordjevic as the man who was ordering the
7 deployment of these SAJ reservists?
8 A. Yes, that is Vlastimir Djordjevic called Rodja. He is one of the
9 assistant ministers of the MUP and he was the chief of the public security
11 Q. Now, based on your intensive following of the happenings and
12 occurrences dealing with this group and based upon your many organs in the
13 field, do you have knowledge that, in fact, the SAJ reservists, the former
14 Skorpions who actually perpetrated the shooting in Podujevo, not only were
15 disciplined by the MUP, were taken out of Kosovo and not returned,
16 criminal denunciations were filed, and these individuals eventually
17 received the maximum sentences for their crimes in the Serbian courts. Do
18 you have that knowledge or information, sir?
19 A. I have information that after Podujevo they were returned to
20 Prolom Banja, and then after that they came back. This information is
21 actually based on data, and I have to say this again. Rade Markovic said
22 on the 17th of May at a meeting with Milosevic, it's something he said
23 there, that's the first thing. The second thing is before judiciary
24 organs certain measures were taken, and from what I recall there was a
25 trial in Nis, and one of those members of this formation who apparently
1 carried out this crime, his name is Sasa Cvijin or something like that, he
2 was sentenced to 20 years' imprisonment, if I remember correctly.
3 Q. Okay. One more question on this topic before we move back to my
4 original order of questions. During the testimony of General Vasiljevic
5 at transcript page 9005 lines 6 through 12, General Vasiljevic confirmed
6 that apart from this one incident in Podujevo at the end of March 1999,
7 your service had no evidence whatsoever of any further crimes committed by
8 this group of SAJ reservists when they were redeployed to Kosovo. I take
9 it that that is your position as well?
10 A. All we had was information that they were returned to Kosovo
11 again, and that sometime between the 10th and the 12th of May they were
12 definitely returned or brought back from Kosovo, that they no longer
13 appeared in Kosovo territory. We had no information for that second time
14 that they were there, about them having committed any crimes -- or
15 actually, I apologise, it was some kind of information but I don't recall
16 it exactly. I think that in the testimony of General Vasiljevic here he
17 mentioned that. I was following that, but I don't remember. I think it
18 was something that happened in Gnjilane, I don't remember whether it was
19 correct or not. But in any case, when they were returned sometime between
20 the 10th and the 15th of May, they were no longer brought back to Kosovo.
21 Q. General, that's a very interesting answer. Did you read the
22 witness statement of General Vasiljevic where he mentioned Gnjilane and
23 tried to tie it to the SAJ reservists? Did you have access to General
24 Vasiljevic's statement?
25 A. I didn't have the statement. I don't recall that, but if this was
1 something that General Vasiljevic stated, then knowing him that he
2 wouldn't say anything without having the facts at hand, that's probably
3 what it was. It's not something that was going through my head. I mean,
4 it's possible. You cannot remember everything.
5 Q. Well, it would be interesting since the Vasiljevic statement was
6 only given to us a few days before General Vasiljevic testified, but let
7 me ask you this because in his statement Vasiljevic does mention Gnjilane
8 and does try to tie that to the SAJ reservists. But in his sworn
9 testimony in re-direct upon questioning of the Prosecution, he confirmed
10 that, in fact, his statement in the written statement was inaccurate, that
11 the event in Gnjilane was, in fact, this Zegra group that you mentioned
12 earlier, which he said, and I quote at transcript page 9107 lines 5 to 17:
13 "The perpetrators in Zegra were a paramilitary group that belonged to
14 the army, a group of volunteers I think it was."
15 Does that refresh your recollection as to whether your service
16 had --
17 A. No, paramilitary group.
18 Q. Sir, I'm only repeating for you your friend General Vasiljevic's
19 words; please don't take it out on me. If he's wrong, then say he's
20 wrong --
21 A. I apologise. I apologise.
22 Q. Does that refresh your recollection that your service's
23 information was that the event -- the incident in Gnjilane was not tied to
24 the SAJ reservists?
25 A. I think that I answered that question. I don't recall that, but
1 it is correct what I said earlier about Zegra and Gnjilane and who
2 committed the crime there. So if I were to assert -- I mean, I don't have
3 facts, I don't have proof, so I do not wish to say anything that I could
4 not stand behind.
5 Q. Okay. Now, I'd like to move on --
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, two matters. It's not clear -- it may be
7 clear to you, Mr. Ivetic. It's not clear to me what the witness is saying
8 about who is responsible for Gnjilane. What's your understanding?
9 MR. IVETIC: Well, let me ask the witness, Your Honour, because I
10 think that's the most important thing.
11 Q. The crime in Gnjilane was this crime in the village of Zegra;
12 isn't that correct?
13 A. The question was -- your question was when 32 volunteers were
14 shown here, I said what it was all about. So there is a group of
15 volunteers there from the 185th Brigade in the Zegra village, this is in
16 Gnjilane, and they killed seven civilians, and that's how it happened.
17 But they were all identified and arrested, and the chief of that group
18 Vlado Zmajevic who was originally from Niksic was sentenced to 20 years'
19 imprisonment, while the others were sentenced to sentences ranging from
20 one to several years' of imprisonment. This is something I know for sure,
21 these facts are correct. As for the other things that you asked me about,
22 I really am unable to say anything. I cannot say anything that I am not
23 sure about that is not completely clear to me.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Gajic, you earlier said that they were from the
25 175th Infantry Brigade. You now say the 185th. Can you clarify that?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, it's possible that I was
2 mistaken, but what I meant to say was the 175th Brigade.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: On the incident in Podujevo, do I gather properly
4 from your evidence that only one person was convicted by the court in
5 relation to that?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, you did understand that
7 correctly, one person was sentenced, but that trial is still not
9 JUDGE BONOMY: And that group were thereafter, after the incident,
10 had led to their being sent out of Kosovo, they were then redeployed back
11 into Kosovo in the month of May?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. Sometime between the 10th and
13 the 15th, they were brought back to Belgrade and they did not appear there
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Under whose authority did they return to Kosovo?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] All I can say is that what was said
17 by Rade Markovic on the 17th of May at the meeting with the president, I
18 can say that, too, that's the only thing I can say. He said that they
19 returned to Kosovo and that Rodja and Obrad did not respect the agreement.
20 He said that literally. I understood that to mean that the agreement was
21 for them not to go there anymore and for them to be banned access there.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: And when you say "he said," are you referring to
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: Markovic?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, Markovic.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: All right.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The chief of the State Security
5 JUDGE BONOMY: And you say his words were that Rodja, who is
6 Djordjevic, and Obrad, who no doubt is Stevanovic, did not observe the
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, and the agreement was that
9 Medic and the Skorpions no longer be allowed to go to Kosovo. These were
10 the words of Rade Markovic.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
12 Mr. Ivetic.
13 MR. IVETIC: Thank you.
14 Q. I'd like to move to the trip that you testified that General Geza
15 Farkas took in -- into Kosovo. Now, you have -- when I asked you about
16 your briefings and what paramilitaries you were talking about, you've been
17 rather explicit that you're talking about the Medic group, the Arkan's
18 people that you say were in -- that Rade Markovic said were in the JSO,
19 and these Vukovi from the Drina and these perhaps Pauk, but those are the
20 only things you've testified about. What were the reasons that General
21 Geza Farkas went to Kosovo because it surely couldn't be the MUP since you
22 didn't have jurisdiction over the MUP. Isn't that correct?
23 A. I think I explained that on Friday when I testified, but I can
24 repeat that. He did not go for the MUP, that's true. He went --
25 Q. That's good enough for me, sir.
1 A. [In English] Okay.
2 Q. Now -- because it goes into my next question. Now, when you said
3 General Farkas returned and commented to you over the telephone, I
4 believe, There are a lot of problems, and he mentioned paramilitaries,
5 robbery, crimes, rapes, and looting. Could you please tell us precisely
6 which paramilitaries Farkas identified to you as the basis of his
8 A. This was a telephone conversation. I had the regular briefing. I
9 knew that he was coming back, and I wanted to have some initial
10 information because he was, or rather, General Ojdanic was always
11 pressuring me - if I can use that expression - with regard to that. So he
12 told me what he could over the telephone; he did not say anything
13 specific. I authentically conveyed what was said to me. Of course over
14 the telephone he did not say that.
15 Q. Well, you -- well, you did have occasion to meet with him
16 afterwards. Did he elaborate at that point in time what paramilitaries he
17 was talking about when he said there were many problems or a lot of
18 problems with paramilitaries?
19 A. General Farkas, when he returned on the morning of the 7th of May,
20 we had a collegium of the chief of administration, and he presented his
21 impressions as to what he noticed during that brief period of time down
22 there. Because he had other questions to deal with as well. In addition
23 to having commended the work of the security organs, without going
24 specifically into any one of the problems or any one of the cases
25 concerned, without mentioning any specific paramilitary formation, because
1 that was not his focus. He just informed us about this; that is to say,
2 he did not specifically refer to this or that paramilitary formation and
3 he even did not even go into specific crimes. It was later that we worked
4 on that. I spoke about that already, but there will probably be other
5 references to it.
6 Q. So is it your testimony, sir, that when the head of your service,
7 a service which is intensively following events on the ground, especially
8 related to crimes, when your head of service says, There are a lot of
9 problems with paramilitaries, no one bothers to go into details and no
10 details are actually in possession of your service, is this all based on
12 A. No, you're not right. He went first and foremost to tour the
13 security organs, because for a long time none of us had toured the
14 security organs and that used to be regular practice. To get insight into
15 their work, that was his focus, and also the problems that had to do with
16 violations of international laws of war and to gain his own impressions,
17 that was his first task. The second task was that there were certain
18 objections in view of the engagement of the units of the military police,
19 and he wanted to see that with the commands and to have certain things
20 corrected. That is to say that that was the main reason why he went down
21 there. He did not go to check the work of the MUP or what it was that the
22 MUP was doing and so on and so forth, that was not it at all. However,
23 through briefings, probably, he did get through this information from the
24 chief of the security department and what he had said to him. He probably
25 did not spell out in very concrete terms, because as I said that was not
1 his basic objective. That is what he conveyed to us. We did not deal
2 with the MUP.
3 Q. Is it my understanding, then, insofar as you in April were talking
4 about the Skorpions and their one incident; the Arkanovci for which you
5 haven't mentioned any incident; and the Wolves on the Drina for which you
6 did not know what they were doing, your service had no other information
7 about any paramilitaries affiliated with the MUP or any crimes committed
8 by these individuals, apart from that one incident that you keep recycling
9 over and over and over. Isn't that correct?
10 A. Well, no, you're not right. You are drawing the wrong
12 Q. Then please tell me the details. What other paramilitaries, what
13 other crimes, since you said that you have no details? What can you
14 possibly have if you don't have details?
15 A. Please, we had information that was yet again corroborated by Rade
16 Markovic at the meeting of the 17th of May that members of Arkan's group
17 killed a family of Albanians, elderly people. That is what Rade Markovic
18 confirmed at the meeting on the 17th of May, and he said it is correct and
19 he said there is an investigation underway. Those are his words --
20 Q. [Previous translation continues]...
21 A. But it is also correct that --
22 Q. Let me get very, very basic with you. Are you trying to tell me
23 that you knew about the killing by the reservist JSO, who happened to be a
24 former Arkan member, that Rade Markovic talked about at the May 17th
25 meeting, do you claim that your service knew about that before it
1 happened? Because Rade Markovic said it happened the day before that
2 meeting. Is your service employing clairvoyance?
3 MR. STAMP: That question involves elements which I don't think
4 are in evidence.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: I'm not sure I understand the question, Mr. Ivetic,
6 in light of the answer from line 20.
7 MR. IVETIC: Well, he said that he had information about this
8 killing, which only occurred the day before the May 17th meeting. So I'm
9 wondering how they could have known about that killing after the Farkas --
10 at the time of -- prior to the meeting itself.
11 Q. I mean, when did you have that information, I guess is the better
12 question to ask you?
13 A. Well, I think that that overlapped with the meeting. Before the
14 meeting we had received such information, and then it was confirmed. It
15 just so happened that way, but it did.
16 Q. And that -- did your service also confirm the information that
17 Rade Markovic also said at that meeting that the individual who had
18 committed the crime, the killing, this former Arkan who was deployed to
19 Kosovo by Rade Markovic and the JSO, had been processed, he has been
20 arrested by the police and was in the process of being processed for his
21 crime? Did your service have that information?
22 A. No, we did not have that information. Rade Markovic confirmed
23 this information. He said, Yes, that is correct. And they are under
24 investigation; that is to say that they had been arrested and that they
25 were under investigation. And he used the plural. He said, They are
1 under investigation.
2 Q. Okay. And indeed there were two. I apologise if I misspoke.
3 Now, apart from this crime and the Podujevo crime, your service
4 has no credible verified information of any crimes. I've been asking this
5 several times. Would you please now finally answer because I think we've
6 exhausted all of these references that either you or General Vasiljevic
7 have kept recycling about what Rade Markovic said.
8 A. That is the information we had. We did not have other
10 Q. Okay. Now -- so of the -- of the many problems that General
11 Farkas discussed, only these two could be linked to the so-called MUP
12 paramilitary groups that you guys coined them as, even though your own
13 definition you said they could not be paramilitaries if they were part of
14 the MUP?
15 A. I've said what I said, and I'm not going to repeat what I said.
16 Q. Fair enough. Now, let's move on. If I can ask you this. Isn't
17 it, in fact, true that one of the reasons for General Farkas's trip was to
18 investigate the information that the service already had about this Pauk
19 group led by Jugoslav Petrusic?
20 A. No.
21 Q. Okay. Okay. Now, you have told us how the service found out
22 about the Pauk group, and you said that you had been following them I
23 think since 1995. I want to put to you the sworn testimony of your
24 colleague and friend General Vasiljevic at transcript page 9008, line 22
25 through 9009, line 5, wherein he admitted that it was the RDB of the MUP,
1 the State Security Service, that actually first uncovered this Pauk group
2 and rather than reporting it with your service reported it straight to
3 President Milosevic, causing some embarrassment for your service. Do you
4 recall that, sir? If you like, I can quote his exact words if it is
5 necessary, but I'm just trying to jog your memory.
6 MR. STAMP: Perhaps counsel should because our computers are
7 crashing and we can't find the exact quote. And I think some aspects like
8 causing embarrassment might be -- might not have been said, as I'm not
10 MR. IVETIC: Well, it's the content. Well, let me read the whole
11 quote, Your Honours.
12 Q. "Q. And when we're talking about Petrusic and Orasanin, am I
13 also -- am I correct that the RDB, the State Security Service, was the
14 initial source of information about Petrusic and his group that ultimately
15 led to the concerns and to the actions that your organs took to arrest
16 these individuals?
17 Answer from General Vasiljevic: "Yes, but the State Security
18 Service did not deliver this information to the military security service;
19 rather, it informed Milosevic of this, and then Milosevic told General
20 Geza about it. This shows what kind of cooperation the MUP had with the
22 Now, General Vasiljevic was very angry at the State Security
23 Service for going behind your service's back and going straight to
24 Milosevic with this information. Am I correct that your service felt
25 slighted by these actions of the RDB relating to the uncovery of the Pauk
2 A. Well, there are a few matters here. First of all, when I talked
3 about Jugoslav Petrusic yesterday, I said what I said very precisely.
4 First of all, I said that --
5 Q. [Previous translation continues]... That --
6 A. Please, I have to explain.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: No, you don't. This is a very simple question,
8 absolutely straightforward. Is this right or wrong?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. Bonomy, it is necessary because
10 what was stated at the outset was something that is incorrect; namely, I
11 did not say that my service in 1995 followed Jugoslav Petrusic. I said
12 that Jugoslav Petrusic from 1995 onwards was re-oriented from the Islamic
13 factor to the Albanian factor, so that is the substantive difference --
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Gajic, that's immaterial to the question you've
15 been asked at the moment. Please just deal with the question that counsel
16 has asked you.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] We had data about Jugoslav Petrusic
18 from an earlier stage, and we exchanged this information with the State
19 Security Service. So I couldn't -- it wouldn't really be proper to say
20 that they did anything behind our backs, because we had knowledge of who
21 Jugoslav Petrusic was and we exchanged this kind of information with the
22 State Security Service. In light of the view that he was within their
23 operational jurisdiction because he was a civilian, they had to have more
24 information about him and they, in turn, provided this information to
25 whoever needed it.
1 MR. IVETIC:
2 Q. Did your service need that information and did you receive it from
4 A. Well, they did not provide information to us on matters that we
5 considered it would have been fair for them to provide information. We
6 did have that problem. I don't know if you had that in mind.
7 Q. Now, this all occurred before the 17th May meeting with Milosevic,
8 and in fact the concerns over the Pauk group were the -- they were the
9 central theme of that meeting with Milosevic. Isn't that correct?
10 A. Well, that was not the central theme. The central theme was the
11 war crimes and other acts that were in contravention with the
12 international law of war and how this should be dealt with together and in
13 a coordinated manner. This was, in fact, a piece of information, an
14 issue, that was dealt with.
15 Q. Okay. And knowing that Pauk was going to be an issue that was
16 going to be dealt with, if not the central theme, isn't that the true
17 reason that your service, beginning May 13th, May 16th, leading up to the
18 meeting, all of a sudden wrote all these reports about the Boca Medic
19 group, again recycling that one incident that you had knowledge of on
20 April the 3rd, trying to deflect pressure off of your service over the
21 Pauk debacle. Isn't that correct?
22 A. Well, I wouldn't agree with you. I think I explained that when I
23 said that on the 13th of May we drafted this report about Skorpions, and
24 we handed it over to the chief of the Supreme Command Staff, and he in
25 turn handed it over to the then-President Milosevic once we were certain
1 about the data that we presented there. I think that was the reason.
2 Q. Okay. Now, I forget if it was after the Farkas trip or after your
3 trip, you indicated that a report that had been created disappeared from
4 the archives. I wanted to ask you: Were there ever any attempts made to
5 reconstruct said report?
6 A. I think you probably mean the report that myself and
7 General Vasiljevic drafted after our return from Kosovo on the 7th of
8 June, 1999. We tried to trace this report, even the disks, because
9 everything that was done at the security administration was also copied on
10 to floppy disks, but we were unavailable to do so. Myself and General
11 Vasiljevic tried to reconstruct that in some way, but during the NATO
12 air-strikes, substantial portions of the security administration archives
13 were destroyed. It is possible that it was there and that it also got
15 Q. Okay. Now, you said that you knew -- let's get to this 17th May
16 meeting and I'd like to discuss the RDB personnel who were former Arkan's
17 people. You claim that you knew about these Arkan individuals that were
18 in the JSO in Kosovo. What were your sources for this information?
19 MR. STAMP: I can't recall, and this is about the third time
20 counsel has said it, where the witness said anything about these -- him
21 knowing them to be in the JSO.
22 MR. IVETIC: I apologise.
23 Q. You said that you knew these men were in Kosovo. What were --
24 what were your sources?
25 A. Those were our operational sources that we had among them and
1 various sources, operational sources.
2 Q. Can you name names, positions? I'm not really satisfied with just
3 the generic sources. Okay.
4 A. No, no, I can't give you their names.
5 Q. Did you understand Markovic as saying that he had deployed these
6 people into Legija's unit?
7 A. No.
8 Q. And when you say you had knowledge of the fact that two of these
9 individuals had been involved in the crime of an elderly Albanian couple,
10 did your information correlate with the information --
11 MR. STAMP: Um -- I don't want to keep jumping up, but again I
12 think the witness said they were involved, that Markovic told him they,
13 and he stressed the plural; and counsel said two.
14 MR. IVETIC: Sorry, I guess I'm going to the evidence that we have
15 already in this case.
16 Q. They, the information that they had committed a crime, did that --
17 did that coincide with the information that Markovic gave to you at the
18 meeting, that one crime?
19 A. Yes, yes.
20 Q. And did Markovic mention the locale where that crime had occurred?
21 A. As far as I can remember, no.
22 Q. Okay. Now, I would like to move along to the Wolves on the Drina
23 which you keep bringing up, but for this which you don't give us much
24 information. Now, you stated --
25 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Ivetic, I think I remember them being mentioned
1 once, and perhaps I asked a question; but beyond that --
2 MR. IVETIC: He raised them to me as well today, Your Honour,
3 twice, I believe.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, I've missed those.
5 MR. IVETIC: They weren't even questions to them. I just asked
6 generally and he kept repeating Arkan's men, these men from Republika
7 Srpska, which are the Wolves from the Drina, he might not have used the
9 JUDGE BONOMY: I see, very well.
10 MR. IVETIC: Let me get to this. He did say they were mentioned
11 with the man Legenda, who he say was Karasek. Let's try and get this
12 cleared up.
13 Q. Now, on the 7th of September, that is, the other day, for that day
14 it was transcript page 108, line 16, you stated that among the topics at
15 the 17th May meeting with Milosevic were the so-called paramilitary group
16 from the Republika Srpska Wolves of the Drina. Can you remember
17 specifically what was said about them?
18 A. This group was mentioned in the context of Arkan, and Medic,
19 a.k.a. Boca, and in his introductory remarks General Vasiljevic mentioned
20 them, but there was no further discussion on them. Specifically, the
21 Drina Wolves were not mentioned again.
22 Q. Okay. Well, I'd like to explore some of the information that your
23 service has from following this group. First of all, to make sure that
24 we're talking about the right group. Am I correct that the Wolves of the
25 Drina were essentially an armed group that operated in Republika Srpska --
1 actually, they were a formal member of the Zvornik Brigade in the Army of
2 the Republika Srpska, with an emblem of a wolf on their shoulder and a
3 captain leading them, captain first class, whose nickname was Legenda. Is
4 that the same group that we're talking about?
5 A. Well, I have to say that you provided more details than I was
6 aware of, but as I already said, this was a group, its name was the
7 Drina Wolves, and their boss was Nedeljko Karasek, a.k.a., Legenda, before
8 the war he was the commander of the special anti-terrorist units in
10 Q. You said that. I'm just trying to see how good your information
11 is with your service, sir. Now what was the source of this information
12 and did you consider that information to be verified and credible?
13 A. We considered this information to be reliable and authenticated
14 because some sources had been from the Republika Srpska area and they knew
15 Nedeljko Karasek and those people who were trained there, and we also had
16 sources on our side so to speak. So the sources here were quite reliable.
17 Q. I see. Quite reliable. Are you familiar with captain first class
18 Milan Jolovic and his role commanding the Wolves of the Drina in the
19 Republika Srpska under the nickname Legenda?
20 A. No.
21 Q. Your sources didn't know about his connection to this group, did
23 A. No, as far as I can recall, no.
24 Q. Did your sources or your information indicate that
25 Captain First Class Jolovic, a.k.a. Legenda, left the army of the Serb
1 republic and joined the Army of Yugoslavia after the Dayton Accords?
2 A. Yes, I know a man by the name of Jolovic. I don't know if his
3 nickname was Legenda, who was in Republika Srpska, in the Republika Srpska
4 army. I think he was also in the 10th Sabotage Detachment, if that's the
5 one. Indeed, later on he went on to join the Army of Yugoslavia, but he
6 did not remain in its rank for long, he was demobilised, if that's the
7 Jolovic that we're talking about.
8 Q. The Jolovic I'm talking about, last rank of colonel, just retired
9 from the VJ a couple months ago, Milan Jolovic, a.k.a. Legenda, who served
10 in Kosovo with the 72nd Special Brigade of the VJ. Is it possible that
11 your sources mixed up their information, considering they didn't know that
12 Legenda was Jolovic and not Karasek?
13 A. I don't think so, because let me give you another example. We had
14 Milorad Ulemek nicknamed Legija --
15 Q. What do Ulemek have to do with the Wolves of the Drina. I'm
16 trying to focus on group by group to find out exactly what you knew and
17 why every time I ask a difficult question you jump to Arkan, I don't know.
18 But I'd like to ask you is it possible that your information was
19 incorrect, given that they didn't know that the commander Legenda, of the
20 Wolves of the Drina, was this professional soldier Milan Jolovic and not
21 Nedeljko Karaska?
22 A. I am ruling out this possibility.
23 Q. Okay. Does your service know if Legenda, Jolovic, was in Kosovo
24 with the 72nd Special Brigade? I presume he had a security officer in
25 that detachment.
1 A. They had it, but I don't know about that.
2 Q. Okay. Are you aware of the fact that after leaving the Republika
3 Srpska SAJ, which is a different SAJ than the one that's under the MUP of
4 Serbia, Mr. Karasek held several positions within the government of the
5 Republika Srpska entity in Bosnia, including deputy minister of the
6 interior; but that in 1997 he moved on and after that date had no
7 affiliation with the MUP of either Republika Srpska or the MUP of Serbia?
8 A. I know that he did various things. I don't know about his further
9 activities because we did not follow it.
10 Q. Do you know that Mr. Karasek relocated to Belgrade, where he
11 resided during the entire duration of the NATO onslaught, air war?
12 A. No, I don't know about that.
13 Q. All right. I'd like to move on to Kosovo Polje. You said that
14 all these groups were based in Kosovo Polje. Do you happen to know how
15 large, geographically speaking, or population-wise Kosovo Polje is?
16 A. First of all, what you say is not correct. I didn't say that all
17 those groups were based in Kosovo Polje. I said that there was a centre
18 in Kosovo Polje and that is linked with Arkan, too.
19 Q. Let's focus on the centre in Kosovo Polje because we had a witness
20 come here, Mr. Odalovic, who was from Kosovo Polje who was in Kosovo Polje
21 during the time period of the war, and he testified that the official SAJ
22 base was located near his house in Kosovo Polje. Did you have information
23 about the fact that the official SAJ base was in Kosovo Polje during the
24 war, and is that perhaps this nebulous centre that your rumours and
25 security organs keep going on and on about?
1 A. I didn't know that the base was there. This is the information
2 that we had, to the effect that Arkan was in that centre, and that's what
3 we presented --
4 Q. Let me ask you this, sir: Given the training that you know your
5 security organs receive, don't you find it rather implausible that the
6 same security organ who is observing Kosovo Polje knows of a centre for
7 Arkan but does not know of an official SAJ base? How could he miss
8 something like that, sir?
9 A. Well, I wouldn't quite put the spin on it. He probably knew that,
10 but if this was a legal base, a legitimate base, that's not something that
11 he was dealing with. He was not dealing with a legitimate MUP base or
12 anything. What he was interested in was what was really important. So he
13 probably knew about the base and he probably visited the base, too.
14 Q. So you go from not knowing -- having any information about it to
15 speculating how he perhaps visited the base. Is that how your service
16 worked, sir? Is it true that it's a lot of guesswork and speculation?
17 Because that's the impression that I'm getting.
18 A. No. I think you're going about this in an improper way, and I
19 really don't like the way you are questioning me. I think that some rules
20 and -- have to be respected and the dignity has to be respected. You're
21 asking tendentious questions that have nothing to do with anything.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Visnjic.
23 MR. VISNJIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I wouldn't like to get
24 involved before this, but I think that the witness was asked whether he
25 had information, and he gave us this answer. And then he was asked about
1 the security organ or his service, he was asked to tell us about that. I
2 think that the witness was quite clear in giving his answer to the initial
3 question, and now as to how the witness dealt with the second question, I
4 leave it up to Mr. Ivetic to decide whether it was what he wanted or not;
5 but I think that this impropriety is something that is there.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: I consider the question to be perfectly properly
7 framed. The witness has twice said that his source probably knew. He
8 could tell us an answer to the most recent question how he comes to that
9 conclusion if it's not speculation.
10 Mr. Gajic, we don't think that anything improper has taken place
11 here. If you want to explain how it is you can say that your source
12 probably knew about the base, then tell us; but unless you can give a
13 basis, then it may well be no more than speculation.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Security organs report on things
15 that are very -- that have a very narrow counter-intelligence focus. Some
16 things that are matter of course, that are not something that his
17 superiors would be interested in, that have nothing to do with
18 counter-intelligence, for instance, that he was sitting in a house with a
19 friend of his, this is not something that he would report, this is not
20 something that we would be interested in. So I said that it is possible
21 that this security organ went to this base, that he was aware of that
22 base, but that was not something that he reported because he thought that
23 it was not essential at all. We did not monitor the MUP or its
24 activities; we did not have the jurisdiction to do so.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you. You are entitled to say: I don't know,
1 when you are asked a question that you don't know the answer to.
2 Mr. Ivetic.
3 MR. IVETIC: Your Honour, I have about ten more questions but I
4 see we're at the quarter past -- quarter till mark.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Very well. We can have our break at this stage.
6 We have to break again for 20 minutes..
7 Mr. Gajic, please go with the usher.
8 And we'll resume at five minutes past 4.00.
9 [The witness stands down]
10 --- Recess taken at 3.45 p.m.
11 --- On resuming at 4.09 p.m.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: We're very grateful to you, Mr. Stamp, for dealing
13 with these two matters raised at the beginning so quickly, and we can now
14 grant both the fourth request that was made by Mr. Ojdanic and
15 Mr. Sainovic's application to correct the identification of the passages
16 in the video.
17 We'll sit in this session until 5.45.
18 [The witness takes the stand]
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Ivetic.
20 MR. IVETIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
21 Q. General Gajic, in dealing with these groups that you said were in
22 Kosovo Polje, and you indicated they all wore SAJ uniforms. I don't
23 suppose you have any information as to the specific details of those
24 uniforms, the insignia thereupon, and their locations; if so, please tell
1 A. No, no. We don't have that. We didn't particularly investigate
3 Q. Okay. Well, one thing you did say you particularly investigated
4 and that you followed in detail was the movements of this group of
5 Boca Medic, and you indicated you knew of their redeployment back into
6 Kosovo and Metohija. Did your information include where they were
7 deployed and based during that second deployment to Kosovo-Metohija?
8 A. From what I recall, I think it was in the broader area of Kosovo,
9 but I don't know if it was Kosovo Polje or something else. I really
10 couldn't specifically say.
11 Q. Okay. Well, Mr. Stoparic again, the Prosecution witness who is an
12 SAJ reservist and a former Skorpion testified on the 13th of July,
13 transcript page 783 to 784 line 4 that when his group was redeployed to
14 Kosovo, that is to say his reserve unit of the SAJ that included some
15 former Skorpions, they were beginning the 15th or 16th of April onwards
16 deployed in Kosovo Polje.
17 Now, I want to ask you insofar as your information is very clear
18 about the Arkan's men wearing SAJ uniforms in Kosovo Polje, how is it
19 possible that you aren't sure whether the SAJ reservists wearing SAJ
20 uniforms that are former Skorpions were in Kosovo Polje? How can that be
21 and is it possible that your operative is mixing again these individuals
22 with the individuals that he says are Arkan's people?
23 A. No, he's not mixing them up. We even felt that after they came
24 back, after the incident in Podujevo, that they would not be brought back
25 to Kosovo, and they did appear. So our operative registered that through
1 his sources and reported that; namely, that they came back again and that
2 the agreement that they would no longer appear was not respected.
3 Q. Let me ask you this: Is it the same source, talking about
4 following the Skorpions and reporting their movements, as is for Arkan's
5 people, is it the same person, the same individual?
6 A. There were different sources, not just one.
7 Q. Do you then concede the possibility that the one source following
8 the Skorpions knows the Skorpions are in Kosovo Polje, but the other
9 source, not knowing who the Skorpions are, sees some people he has
10 knowledge of from their participation in other wars and assumes them to be
11 Arkan's people? Do you concede that is a possibility, given that two
12 separate sources covering the same locale report about two separate
13 groups, but neither one of them reports about both groups being in that
15 A. I rule out that possibility.
16 Q. Based upon what, sir, what verified, credible, uncontrovertible
17 evidence do you have to exclude that possibility in your own mind?
18 A. Because Boca Medic and Arkan- and I said that they appeared for a
19 long time in the roles that they appeared in, and our operatives in Kosovo
20 and outside Kosovo knew them both by appearance, Arkan, Medic, and a
21 majority of their members. I said we had sources among them that we
22 talked with and who provided information to us. So the possibility that
23 there was some kind of mix-up or substitution is ruled out.
24 Q. I see. Now you're changing the story to say that Arkan himself
25 was in Kosovo Polje; is that it? Because that's not what's been said to
1 date. To date it's been said that certain individuals, 30 individuals
2 from Arkan's group of 100 were offered were deployed by Ratko Markovic,
3 the RDB chief in Kosovo.
4 A. I didn't say that Arkan was there. I said that our operatives in
5 Kosovo and outside Kosovo knew Arkan and Medic, they knew them by
6 appearance. I never said that Arkan was in Kosovo, however, Arkan
8 Q. Okay. Now, last question about these groups. The Wolves of the
9 Drina, based upon your information, as vast as it is, where were they
10 based or deploy and during what time-period?
11 A. This was also in the Kosovo Polje area, and we had information
12 even that they were in private houses. This was the time when Medic, Boca
13 Medic, was there, too, perhaps a little bit earlier or a little bit later,
14 but it's more or less that time-period.
15 Q. Okay. Thank you. Now, I have just one more thing related to your
16 testimony yesterday that I was a little baffled on. Are you genuinely
17 telling us that you are not sure who Colonel Milorad Stupar is and where
18 he was during the Kosovo war? Because I have information that he was with
19 you in the high command of the VJ during most of that time-period. Isn't
20 that correct?
21 A. I couldn't confirm that. The only thing that I know, because that
22 was also an issue, is that on the 14th of April when the order was drafted
23 on the acceptance of volunteers --
24 Q. [Previous translation continues]...
25 A. Stupar wasn't there, but, yes, I know him personally.
1 Q. And do you know what role he held during the NATO bombing?
2 A. I think that for a while he worked in the infantry administration,
3 since he is an infantry man, but perhaps he was in some other duties, too.
4 But I think that for a while he was at the infantry administration.
5 [Defence counsel confer]
6 MR. IVETIC: One moment, Your Honour, I think I have maybe one
7 more question for this witness. I just want to check something.
8 [Lukic Defence counsel and the accused Lukic confer]
9 MR. IVETIC: Your Honours, I'm completed with this witness.
10 Q. Thank you, Mr. Gajic, for your time and cooperation.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you, Mr. Ivetic.
12 You'll now be examined by the Prosecutor, Mr. Stamp.
13 Mr. Stamp.
14 MR. STAMP: Thank you, Your Honours.
15 Cross-examination by Mr. Stamp:
16 Q. Can I start -- well, good afternoon, General. Can I start by just
17 briefly taking up --
18 A. Good afternoon.
19 Q. Taking up where we left off in respect to the paramilitaries. You
20 said that the Drina Wolves, the Skorpions, the Arkan's men, they wore SAJ
21 uniforms, although you could not describe any particular insignia on those
22 uniforms, you mean the normal, regular, SAJ uniforms they were wearing?
23 A. You could say that, yes.
24 Q. Do you know that it is an offence to impersonate the police -- or
25 it was an offence to impersonate the police in 1999 in Serbia --
1 MR. IVETIC: Your Honour, I would object to this question in so
2 far as the evidence that I led established that they were all members of
3 the police, so I don't think this question has any basis or foundation in
4 the cross-examination that was conducted.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stamp.
6 MR. STAMP: I can't see why, having regard to what counsel is
7 saying, that is question is impermissible, but I could move on --
8 JUDGE BONOMY: No, I agree with you. The witness has given more
9 than one definition of a paramilitary. So there is no reason why you
10 cannot ask this question.
11 MR. STAMP:
12 Q. Well, was it illegal to impersonate the police?
13 A. No.
14 Q. I'm not sure if I understand. You are saying that persons who
15 were not members of the police could pretend or wear police uniforms
17 A. No, that is illegal.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: Can I take you back just a little. You were asked
19 at the beginning there if these various groups wore regular SAJ uniforms,
20 and your answer was rather ambiguous. You said: "You could say that,
22 Now, what was the position? Were they or were they not wearing
23 regular SAJ uniforms?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In the special units of the police,
25 there is the special anti-terrorist unit, "Specijalne Antiteroristcke
1 Jedinice," and the other units that I know of, the "Posebne Jedinice
2 Policije," are special units that are used for some specific assignments
3 but can be used for some anti-terrorist activities. So I think a more
4 correct answer would be that they wore insignia of the police, that they
5 didn't have insignia. Some of them perhaps had SAJ insignia, but for the
6 most part they wore police insignia. I think that that would be a more
7 proper and more correct reply.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stamp.
9 MR. STAMP:
10 Q. I'm trying to look at your answer here. Well, let me just ask you
11 the question directly. When you say they wore -- they wore -- for the
12 most part they wore police insignia, you mean regular police attached to
13 the RJB, that is, public security of the MUP?
14 A. No. If we are talking about the groups that we mentioned before,
15 these are not regular police units.
16 Q. Very well --
17 A. -- They did not go through the procedure, because the Law on
18 Defence has Article 18, regulating how the ranks of the military and the
19 ranks of the MUP are replenished. In paragraph 2 of that law it is said
20 that --
21 Q. Very well. Thanks. I --
22 A. I apologise. I just wanted to complete the sentence. I apologise
23 to the Prosecutor. Paragraph 2 of that Article 18 it says that organs and
24 units of MUP are replenished with military conscripts; in order to have
25 the forces replenished with military conscripts, it has to go through the
1 military districts as the military territorial organs. If the military
2 districts are not used and they are bypassed, this means that the law is
3 being violated.
4 Q. Yes. Your earlier answer I think you referred to special units of
5 the police and you went on to say that for the most part these units that
6 we are speaking about wore police insignia. What I want to understand
7 from you when you say they wore police insignia, you mean insignia of
8 police units attached to the public security department of the MUP?
9 A. Yes, those are the insignia worn by the police. There is no
10 crucial difference.
11 Q. Do you know when the Wolves went into Kosovo?
12 A. You mean the Drina Wolves?
13 Q. Yes.
14 A. I already answered that question. This was approximately when the
15 Skorpions appeared there, too, this was sometime in April, perhaps a
16 couple of days before or after, but more or less at that time.
17 Q. When were the crimes that you spoke of committed at Podujevo?
18 A. The crime in Podujevo was committed on the 31st of March, 1999,
19 when the first -- when Slobodan Medic, Boca, and the Skorpions were in
20 Kosovo for the first time.
21 Q. So if the Drina Wolves went to Kosovo when the Skorpions appeared
22 there, they would have gone to Kosovo at approximately the end of March?
23 A. The Skorpions were there for the first time and they committed the
24 crime on the 31st of March, and then they were returned. Mr. Ivetic put
25 that question, they were returned to Prolom Banja in April. They went
1 back again, and sometime between the 10th and the 15th of May they were
2 brought back from Kosovo again; and according to our information, they did
3 not go back to Kosovo again. The second time thus they went to Kosovo,
4 it's possible that --
5 Q. The problem arises I think because you are not answering the
6 questions asked. I'm just asking you when the Drina Wolves went to
7 Kosovo, and you told me that they appeared at the same time as the
8 Skorpions, and we know that the Skorpions went there two times. And that
9 is why we are spending a long time on a very small issue. Can you tell me
10 when, in which month, the Drina Wolves appeared in Kosovo?
11 A. April.
12 Q. Do you know who -- under whose authority they were brought there?
13 A. I don't know.
14 Q. Do you know when they left Kosovo?
15 A. No.
16 Q. Do you know if they were there for the duration of the war?
17 A. Yes, in April 1999 they were there. For how long, though, I don't
19 Q. Do you know what they were doing in Kosovo?
20 A. We didn't have concrete information that they committed any
22 Q. Do you know what they were doing in Kosovo?
23 A. We didn't have any information. We just registered that they were
24 in Kosovo, but as for exactly what they did, that they were in Kosovo
25 Polje and in private houses, so on, but we didn't have specific
1 information as to what they were doing.
2 Q. I noted here, General, that you said in respect to these groups --
3 A. The microphone is turned off.
4 Q. -- That you had sources among them?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. So didn't your sources among them tell you what the Drina Wolves
7 were doing in Kosovo?
8 A. The information that was there came more from sources from
9 Republika Srpska from those who monitored it and let us know or alerted us
10 that they had come to Kosovo.
11 Q. Well, just tell me - and you know as His Honour indicated, you can
12 say you don't know if you don't know - did your sources within this group
13 tell you what they were about in Kosovo?
14 A. No.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Gajic, I have it in my mind that we've heard
16 evidence that there were instructions issued by VJ command that there
17 should not be paramilitaries operating at all. Was that your
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, it was specified, yes.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: On what basis then would it be appropriate to
21 ignore the presence of the Wolves from Drina in Kosovo, as you appear to
22 have done?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Because the order that came from the
24 Supreme Command Staff was not respected; the army respected it, but the
25 MUP did not.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: You weren't concerned about this at the end of
2 March then?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] We were concerned.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: And in spite of that, you were unable to establish
5 anything at all about the activities of the Wolves in the Drina?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] We tried, but during that time we
7 could not gather relevant or specific data.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: They sound more like foxes than wolves.
9 Mr. Stamp.
10 MR. STAMP: Thank you.
11 Q. The Arkan group, on whose authority did they go to Kosovo, do you
12 know that?
13 A. Yes, the state security department.
14 Q. Who in the state security department?
15 A. The department chief, Mr. Rade Markovic, the RDB chief.
16 Q. They were -- they went down there and they wore SAJ uniforms,
17 uniforms of the public security department. Did he authorise that they
18 were to be attached to units of the public security department?
19 A. I don't know if he authorised them, but all I know is that Arkan
20 offered 100 men for Kosovo and that Rade Markovic suggested that he report
21 to the army and that they be included or that they join the military as
22 volunteers. And then 30 of his men were taken and sent to Kosovo.
23 Q. So these 30 men were sent to Kosovo and went to Kosovo as
24 volunteers of the army?
25 A. Not volunteers of the army, but through the RDB. Markovic
1 suggested to Arkan to join the ranks of the army. He categorically
2 refused that, and then he was sent by the RDB, 30 of his men, that is.
3 That is to say they had nothing to do army.
4 Q. So I'll ask you this again in respect to Arkan's men. What did
5 your sources among them tell you they were doing in Kosovo?
6 A. Our sources registered their presence in the territory of Kosovo
7 Polje. We did not have anything more specific up until the very eve of
8 the meeting held at Milosevic's on the 17th of May; namely, that some
9 members - we didn't know who - committed a crime.
10 [Prosecution counsel confer]
11 MR. STAMP:
12 Q. Maybe it's my misunderstanding, because I noted that you said that
13 we had sources among them, which you said. What do you mean when you say
14 that, We had sources among them, including the Arkan group?
15 A. I think I said that among Boca's men we had sources; as for
16 Arkan's, well we had some contacts but not quality sources. However, we
17 found out when they were in the territory of Kosovo, we found out through
18 some other sources that they had committed a crime, that they killed two
19 persons, and that was later confirmed by Rade Markovic as being correct,
20 and that they were arrested and under investigation.
21 Q. So you don't know whether or not they took part in any operations
22 by the security forces while they were in Kosovo?
23 A. Well, as soon as they got there -- I mean, they came on account of
24 some activity. They did not come just to sit around. Whoever came to
25 Kosovo came for some activity.
1 Q. So you tell us that you don't know what they were doing down
2 there. You tell us that they came there for some activity. So I'm asking
3 if you know whether or not they were involved in any operations by the
4 security forces in Kosovo?
5 A. They did not participate on the part of the army. As for the MUP
6 side, or rather, in terms of the tasks of the RDB, I don't know. I don't
7 know exactly. I don't know specifically, but I know that they were there.
8 Q. Pauk, when did Pauk become -- or when did Pauk attend in Kosovo as
9 members of the 125th Motorised Brigade? Just give me a month and a -- a
10 date and a month, if you can.
11 A. April, around the 20th or right after the 20th of April, 1999.
12 Q. When did the army - when I say "the army," I mean you in the
13 command of the army, the Supreme Command - discover that they were not --
14 or did not fulfil the regular procedure to join the army?
15 A. Well, sometime in the beginning of May, because after that I was
16 at that reception centre called Grocka near Belgrade in order to carry out
17 an inspection of that reception centre. Then this information that we had
18 were confirmed; that is to say, the security organs who were there
19 confirmed our suspicions.
20 Q. So when were they -- well, removed from the army?
21 A. They were removed sometime around mid-May, and Petrusic and
22 Orasanin and I think two other members were brought into Belgrade to be
23 interviewed by us, and the interview started on the 18th of May, 1999.
24 Q. So were they arrested or were they taken into custody -- well,
25 were they arrested and charged for anything or were they released?
1 A. They were brought in for an interview. They were taken into
2 custody. Interviews with them were held for about a week I think. After
3 that they were handed over to the State Security Service because we did
4 not have any proof of their espionage activities, and also there was no
5 evidence of them having committed a crime.
6 Q. So --
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Is the timing of this now being linked to the
8 meeting on the 17th of May?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, you're right, Mr. Bonomy.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: So were they taken to Belgrade for interview only
11 after that meeting?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, on the 18th of May, that's when
13 the interview started. On the 17th, that gathering was informed, the
14 gathering chaired by then-President Milosevic, and he said then that the
15 situation should be cleared up with them. And we were supposed to do this
16 together with the State Security Service; however, they obstructed that,
17 so we resolved the matter.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stamp.
19 MR. STAMP:
20 Q. So what became of them, did they -- were they released and did
21 they remain in the country?
22 A. They were handed over to the State Security Service because there
23 was no proof in order to have criminal charges brought against them. But
24 since the State Security Service had discovered that they were planning
25 some unlawful activity, including some threats of assassinations, they
1 were arrested, and they were in detention, or rather, in prison until the
2 political changes took place in Serbia on the 5th of October, 2000, when
3 they were amnestied.
4 Q. Let's discuss briefly, if we may, the Serbian Liberation Army.
5 You were shown Exhibit 593 and we -- I don't think we need to go into it,
6 which referred to the Serbian Liberation Army. Was that a group that was
7 attached to the MUP or to the VJ?
8 A. It was not attached to anybody. This was a group in the territory
9 of Krusevac that had been formed by Lieutenant Gajic, who has the same
10 last name as I do, and it involved a number of civilians. This group
11 collected weapons and they planned to go to Kosovo. There were even some
12 threats issued there in -- among other things, they threatened to
13 assassinate Nebojsa Pavkovic, commander of the 3rd Army. The service
14 discovered that, followed that, documented it, arrested them. They were
15 taken to court, a trial was held, and they were all convicted.
16 Q. Yes, that is what I want to ask you about. The service arrested
17 them for what? What were they charged for?
18 A. They were charged for illegal organisation and arming with a view
19 to going to Kosovo as a separate paramilitary formation outside the army.
20 Q. Which --
21 A. Because --
22 Q. Which service charged them?
23 A. The counter-intelligence service, we who were in charge of the
24 entire action.
25 Q. That is the counter-intelligence service of the 1st, 2nd, 3rd
1 Army, or of the General Staff, or of a particular brigade?
2 A. Of the 3rd Army, although when this matter was being dealt with,
3 the matter of that group, there was General Aleksandar Vasiljevic, who was
4 there in charge of the entire action from the security administration.
5 Q. Yes, that really is my next question. Where were they charged?
6 And I don't mean if you can relate when to an event. If you can tell when
7 in terms of a month and a date?
8 A. It's going to be hard for me to remember that. I know that it was
9 during the war. Now, was it second, or rather, was it February or March
10 1999? So -- no, no, not February or March. It could have been April or
11 May, during the course of the war, April or May 1999.
12 Q. Were they charged in a military court or in a civilian court?
13 A. In a military court, because the leader of that group was a
14 lieutenant of the Army of Yugoslavia, Lieutenant Gajic.
15 Q. Now, did you in respect to the groups in Kosovo, the Drina Wolves,
16 the Arkan group, investigate -- well, not the Drina Wolves, the Arkan's
17 group, let's ask about that one. Did you investigate and submit any
18 reports on any or on the crime that you knew they were accused of?
19 A. No, because this was the jurisdiction of the civilian court. That
20 was supposed to be taken up by the civilian judiciary, and Mr. Markovic
21 said that investigation was under way against these individuals, these men
22 of Arkans who had killed those two old Albanians.
23 Q. I'd like to move on to something else. You were shown quite a few
24 documents which you said were briefing notes of the meetings of the
25 Supreme Command. Just a couple questions about them, please.
1 MR. STAMP: Can we have a look at one of them, 3D606. If we could
2 just focus on the B/C/S copy of it, the first page. There are only three
3 pages or four pages on this one. And go to the last page, the last page
4 in B/C/S, just B/C/S we're looking at.
5 Q. What I wanted to ask you is: How were these documents, do you
6 know how this particular document was created?
7 A. I don't see any document. From the briefing I only have -- oh, I
9 Q. It looks to see as though it's a computer print-out and it is
11 A. Oh, these are minutes from the briefing held at the Supreme
12 Command Staff that was done every day.
13 Q. Who prepared these records?
14 A. They were prepared by the chef de cabinet to the Chief of Staff of
15 the Supreme Command. Every evening there was a briefing and he made brief
16 notes, and then this was compiled.
17 Q. Did you review them at all in 1999 after they were compiled?
18 A. Only when I was called as a witness; that is when this was made
19 available to me.
20 Q. When was that?
21 A. Well, about two or three months ago.
22 Q. You noticed that a document -- these briefing notes that are
23 shown, they appear with no stamp, they are not signed, and they bear no
24 writing. Do you know whether or not these are -- were produced as
25 computer print-outs?
1 A. Well, yes. This is an abbreviated version that was compiled at
2 every briefing, then it would be printed out. As for all briefings at the
3 Supreme Command Staff, they were all recorded, taped and there is an
4 extensive version of the remarks of all members of the Supreme Command
5 Staff. This is just an abbreviated version, because at the end the Chief
6 of Staff of the Supreme Command would conclude the briefing and issue
7 specific assignments.
8 Q. Well, where are the tapes of these -- of the briefing themselves?
9 Do you know where they are kept?
10 A. Well, probably they should be in the archives of the army. I
11 don't know now because something was changed in view of changes in the
12 set-up of the army, but they must be in the archives.
13 Q. Well, do you know - and either you do or you don't - whether or
14 not this document was abbreviated or could have been abbreviated at a time
15 when preparations were made to print it?
16 A. No. As it was written, important points as they were jotted down,
17 that's how it was printed out afterwards. I don't think it was necessary
18 to abbreviate that because after that the assignments issued by the Chief
19 of Staff of the Supreme Command followed.
20 Q. You were shown also documents purporting to be reports from the
21 security organs of the Pristina Corps and the 3rd Army. How were those
22 reports made, do you know?
23 A. Yes, that is to say that there were several methods. One were the
24 telegrams that arrived in the security administration, and another method
25 were the reports that were formalised and that had to have a certain
1 format; and there were regulations to that effect, what the format should
2 be and what the content should include.
3 Q. Well, let's look at one of them. Let's look at 10 -- 3D1033.
4 Most of them bear the format that you see there, General. Is that a
5 typewritten report, a telegram? What format is this?
6 A. It's a telegram.
7 Q. Do you see some writing to the top right-hand corner? Whose
8 writing is that?
9 A. This was written when it arrived in the security administration.
10 Then, this is -- well, I mean, this is handed over to the operatives and
11 to the analysis people, and there are initials there. And I cannot decode
12 that now. They jot down notes or a task that should be carried out in
13 relation to that telegram and who was supposed to carry out that task, and
14 then it's signed by initials.
15 Q. I take it you were also shown these in preparation for your
16 testimony here. Before you were shown them in preparation for testimony,
17 when had -- when had you seen them before, if you had seen them before?
18 A. It's not necessarily for me to have a look at them beforehand.
19 All these telegrams went through my hands. I was assistant for
20 counter-intelligence and at the same time deputy head of department in the
21 security administration. So they all went through my hands.
22 Q. Now, the intelligence that is -- or the information that you have
23 recorded in the reports from the security organs that you spoke about in
24 court, they -- it comes from a variety of sources. In answer to a
25 question by Mr. Ivetic, you said that you could not tell the source. When
1 you say you could not tell the source, is it because you don't know these
2 sources personally or is it because you would not for any other reason,
3 perhaps security?
4 A. Thank you for this question. In all services of the world,
5 including our own as well, there are several categories of sources. There
6 are some sources that are registered and have a code, which means that
7 there is a legal regulation or obligation on the part of the state that if
8 something happens to them, they should be entitled to social security,
9 medical treatment, and so on, so that's a secret. They can be disclosed,
10 but only through a special order. Then there are other operative sources
11 that are a lower category who, unless the sources ask to be protected, can
12 be disclosed. But the first category, the registered ones, they enjoy
13 full protection because the consequences can be grave if their identity is
15 Q. Well, I was just asking you, when you told Mr. Ivetic that you
16 could not tell him your sources, was that because you did not know who the
17 source was or was there another reason? Was it because you would not do
18 it for another reason?
19 A. Well, no, I, quite simply, don't know. Who could remember all of
21 Q. Very well.
22 A. I mean, I'd have to check that. So there was no other reason but
24 Q. Among the sources that you received information from in 1999 was
25 the security service of the MUP, they were one of the sources?
1 A. Yes, it was the RDB, because by virtue of our powers and tasks, we
2 mostly coordinate with the RDB, less with the MUP. It's the military
3 police that cooperates with the MUP.
4 Q. And the RDB, I take it, also was one of the sources for
5 information to the Pristina Corps security organ and the 3rd Army security
7 A. Yes, and they often exchanged information because this is within
8 the authority of the RDB, to cover a territory and to have their sources
9 in all structures. That is their main task.
10 Q. And some of the documents you spoke about referred to information
11 from sources abroad, in Switzerland and even Albania. Were these sources
12 that were attached to the security organ or they were sources of the RDB
13 or they were sources of military intelligence?
14 A. Combined sources, both RDB and the military counter-intelligence
15 service and also some information and data came from the military
16 intelligence service.
17 Q. Who conducted the electronic surveillance that some of these
18 documents refer to? What was the source of it?
19 A. Electronic surveillance centres that were run by the military that
20 had the appropriate equipment and some of the data that the
21 counter-intelligence service was interested in, we got that regularly.
22 Q. Wouldn't you agree with me that you relied upon sources, for
23 example, the RJB, for information which you used but you subsequently
24 developed that -- you subsequently realised that the information you got
25 from the sources was incorrect?
1 A. Well, I wouldn't fully agree with your conclusion. First of all,
2 the data that we got were either fully verified or verified to a high
3 degree. And even the data that we got from the other sources, the state
4 security and so on, we would verify them. And the developments later on
5 proved that those data were, indeed, accurate.
6 Q. Well, your chief of the security department for the Pristina Corps
7 was Momir Stojanovic; that's correct?
8 A. The head of the security sector; the security department is at the
9 army level.
10 Q. Well, the department that was providing these reports that you
11 spoke of, he was one of the persons who was providing these reports, the
12 security organ of the Pristina Corps?
13 A. Yes, but with regard to Kosovo all other security organs of the
14 Army of Yugoslavia were under an obligation to provide reports.
15 Q. Do you know that Mr. Stojanovic in 2003 in an interview said that
16 a lot of the reports that were submitted to the army by the state security
17 turned out to be incorrect and that in many cases the army acted on the
18 information, employed significant forces, but it was almost always shown
19 that this was not necessary.
20 Do you recall whether or not he said that in an interview?
21 A. Well, I don't remember that interview, but he meant the data
22 related primarily to the strength of the terrorist forces. Because those
23 were the data that the military had, and we, the military
24 counter-intelligence service, that came -- and also the data that came
25 from the RDB were diametrically opposed. I think that they actually
1 overestimated the number of terrorists. It was way higher in their
2 estimate than it actually was. I think that our data were, in fact, more
4 Q. Well, the interview I'm speaking of -- in that interview you are
5 speaking of the flow of the weapons across the border. But the point I
6 want to make is this, and I should correct myself, that interview was
7 conducted in the year 2000 when you were still, I believe, employed to the
8 security -- the state security department. And I take it if your
9 subordinate made a statement like that, you would be aware of it. And the
10 statement is that you received information from state security,
11 intelligence from state security, which you acted upon, that is, you
12 believed it to be true; and that was the basis of policy and operations by
13 the army. And later on it turned out to be false. Did you know that he
14 said that?
15 A. I don't know that he said that because at that time he was not in
16 the military security service. After the -- after graduating from the war
17 school, I think immediately after that, he took up a command post as a
18 brigade commander. So he was not in the security service. He was not a
19 security organ.
20 Q. Do you know that General Lazarevic after the war, the same year,
21 December 2000, also said the same thing?
22 MR. IVETIC: Your Honour, I've let this go long enough but I think
23 I should be objecting. Mr. Stamp for the last several questions has been
24 using a document for which he listed for cross-examination for which we
25 have an objection and I think he knows we have an objection to it and I
1 think he's asking these questions in a way to get around that objection,
2 but he's misphrasing the fact that this is an interview. What Mr. Stamp
3 is using is a -- is a news journal article from a weekly tabloid, it's
4 even identified as a tabloid, and it is an English translation, summary,
5 prepared by FBIS, which I think we've had discussions previously as being
6 affiliated with the state department or the CIA and then there's the B/C/S
7 translation of the English translation. So we don't even have the
8 original text of this article that purports to have been taken. And to
9 keep calling it an interview and saying persons said X, Y, and Z is far
10 from the truth. This is not a sworn statement, this is a tabloid. I
11 think we all know what that means. I think Mr. Stamp by not addressing
12 this point is creating a false impression with his questioning.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stamp.
14 MR. STAMP: I asked the question whether he knew something had
15 been said; if he knows it he knows it, if he does not know it, he does
16 not. But I'm surprised because I thought that counsel was saying in the
17 course of his cross-examination the same point I'm trying to get to, that
18 perhaps these reports are not necessarily reliable.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: The objection is to you characterising the material
20 that you're using as an interview, and as if you had word for word the
21 statement that were made. I don't think the objection is to you asking
22 whether the witness knew the sort of information that you're gleaning from
23 the document. Because if he doesn't, it comes to nothing; and if it does,
24 well, it's his evidence, it's nothing to do with the document itself. So
25 subject to that, you can continue.
1 MR. STAMP:
2 Q. The report of the interview I have here, General, is that General
3 Lazarevic said after the war --
4 MR. VISNJIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I have to support
5 Mr. Ivetic's word and just give you one example. In this report that
6 Mr. Stamp is trying to quote, it is stated that General Lazarevic is the
7 Chief of General Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia and the 3rd Army or some
8 other unit is mentioned under the name of the 3rd Military District. I
9 think this is quite sufficient for you to be able to determine the
10 relevance of this source for the asking of questions. I think that we
11 could analyse it and find a host of such examples.
12 MR. STAMP: Your Honour, I'm not putting the source, I'm not
13 addressing the source --
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Why do you bother then saying: "The report of the
15 interview I have here is that General Lazarevic said after the war ..."?
16 MR. STAMP: I wish him to comment on what General Lazarevic is
17 reported to have said; if he knows it, he knows it, if he does not, he
18 does not.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: What you've heard already from Mr. Visnjic is good
20 reason to question the accuracy of this. Why don't you just ask him the
21 straight question, whether X, whichever it is from the report, is his
22 understanding of the position. Otherwise, you're going to create anxiety
23 among Defence counsel and constantly be interrupted.
24 MR. STAMP: Very well.
25 Q. Do you know, General, that in 1999 the security organs received
1 information primarily from the SDB, acted on the information in the belief
2 that the information was true, and subsequently discovered that the
3 information was not true?
4 A. Well, this question would call for a more complex answer. Many
5 pieces of information came in with varying degrees of being verified.
6 Some were completely unverified, some were fully verified. The security
7 organs, their reports mostly contained information that had been verified,
8 had been accurate. And further developments confirmed that that was in
9 case. But they also provided information that was not correct, but they
10 thought they were indicative of something and they thought the security
11 administration had to know that. We in the security administration
12 approached these data very carefully, and we reported to the state and
13 military leadership only on those things that were verified. If anything
14 was unverified, we indicated that by saying, This is raw operative
15 intelligence, hasn't been verified. That's what we indicated.
16 Q. Very well. But what I wanted to know - and I'll just give you a
17 specific example --
18 JUDGE BONOMY: Please try to answer the question you're being
19 asked, Mr. Gajic. What you did was not answer that question.
20 MR. STAMP:
21 Q. I will repeat it and this time particularise. Did the security
22 department or security administration receive information in respect to
23 weapons crossing the border for the KLA from the state security sector and
24 this information was acted upon because you believed it, you deployed --
25 you caused the army to deploy resources on the basis of this information,
1 but later on you discovered the information was false?
2 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, please --
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Bakrac.
4 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] -- Before the witness answers I would
5 like to ask you, I know that I may be wasting your time, but I don't want
6 to be accused of dealing with this matter in front of the witness. I
7 would like to ask for the witness to step out of the courtroom. You
8 agreed with our objections, you agreed that this document was not valid,
9 but Mr. Stamp on the basis of this document, the purported interview,
10 created a base misleading the witness into believing that somebody may
11 have said something. But what is stated in the interview is the complete
12 opposite, and if you allow me I will read it out in front of the witness
13 what is stated in this purported interview. It is the exact opposite to
14 what Mr. Stamp is asking about, and he made this foundation that this was
15 based on this purported interview --
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Just give us a moment to consider the position.
17 [Trial Chamber confers]
18 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you, Mr. Bakrac. We don't agree that there
19 is anything inappropriate in the question that has just been asked, and we
20 require the witness to answer that question.
21 Mr. Stamp, if you wish to put it again.
22 MR. STAMP:
23 Q. Did the security service receive information about the movements
24 of weapons across the border by the KLA, and on the basis of this
25 information cause the army or gave information to the army and the army
1 deployed on the basis of this information, yet later on it was discovered
2 that this information was false?
3 A. I would phrase it in a different way, but I will answer your
4 question. The information was not inaccurate, but those who wanted to
5 cross illegally with the weapons from the territory of Albania either
6 changed their minds or decided that they couldn't go through or they had
7 some information from their own sources that the military setting up the
8 ambush and gave up on the intention, and then tried some ten days later on
9 a different location. But there was some information, of course, that
10 wasn't quite reliable, but if we're talking about weapons smuggling across
11 the border, that was a rare occurrence, if I recall it correctly. I'm --
12 I apologise, Mr. Prosecutor, but the KLA had their own intelligence
13 service, too, and they monitored every movement of the army. They had it
14 active in Albania and in Kosovo, and they had air support in order to be
15 able to monitor everything that was going on at the state border.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Did I accurately note your answer there as being to
17 the effect that weapons smuggling across the border was a rare occurrence?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, no, quite the contrary. This
19 was quite intense, and I spoke about it, how it developed in stages. And
20 I said - let me remind you, sir - that in July and August 1998 alone there
21 were 72 border incidents at the border with Albania in the Pristina Corps
22 area. 196 in 1998 as a whole.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: This is a translation issue. I'm just trying to
24 find out what your answer was. You said: "But if we're talking about
25 weapons smuggling across the border, that was," something, "if I recall it
2 Now, what was it you said?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I said in answer to Mr. Prosecutor's
4 question about the reliability of the information, I said that for the
5 most part this information was reliable --
6 JUDGE BONOMY: I have that. It's not that point I'm asking you
7 about. We've got your answer on that. You said something about how
8 regularly weapons were smuggled across the border. Now, what did you say
9 about that?
10 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: Rare occurrence refers to
11 the unreliability.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] There were such attempts every day,
13 more successful or less successful.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you, and I now understand it that the
15 reference to rare occurrence was to the occasions when the information was
16 inaccurate. It's my misunderstanding of the position.
17 Mr. Stamp.
18 MR. STAMP:
19 Q. You were shown documents, 3D1033, 3D1035, and 3D1052. I think --
20 well, these documents relate to the events that took place in Podujevo
21 just before -- well, in the latter part of December 1998. And basically,
22 these documents reflect - and I don't think I need to go into the
23 details - these documents indicate that a combat group of the 15th
24 Armoured Brigade were engaged in exercises in Pristina [sic] and they were
25 fired upon by the KLA, and that is how they became embroiled in an action
1 against the KLA. Do you recall that?
2 A. Yes.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Visnjic.
4 MR. VISNJIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I think that the
5 wording of the question is incorrect. I don't think it's Pristina, but if
6 the witness knows what this is all about. It should be Podujevo, but
7 apparently the witness understood what it was all about.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, Podujevo, I understood what
9 this was in reference to.
10 MR. STAMP: My apologies, and thank you, sir.
11 Q. Can you look at 3D -- sorry, P928, and having regard to the
12 information that you had, I would like you to comment on what I'm about to
13 show you. And it's page 14 in English of P928, and that is page 15 in the
14 B/C/S copy.
15 This is General Dimitrijevic speaking if we look at the previous
16 page, we realise that General Dimitrijevic was head of the MUP is
17 speaking. And he says: "In addition, the current situation in the
18 vicinity of Podujevo, I think that we must be completely consistent here
19 and completely open towards each other" --
20 MR. IVETIC: Your Honour, before this gets too far out, I don't
21 believe General Dimitrijevic was head of the MUP.
22 MR. STAMP: I keep making errors, I'm sorry. I meant head of
23 security administration of the VJ.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
25 MR. STAMP:
1 Q. And since there's an interruption I might add that this was the
2 30th of December, 1998, shortly after those reports that you had from the
3 Pristina Corps security organ were written. He's saying in respect to
4 these events:
5 "I think that we must be completely consistent here and completely
6 open towards each other, so to speak. This situation in Podujevo and the
7 surroundings, it was complex before, but when did it suddenly become even
8 more complicated. After the so-called pretend or real planned exercises
9 in which this company took part in the field. General, these sorts of
10 moves will lead us to disaster. The explanation that this was a planned
11 exercise, that is not true. It was planned that the unit would provoke
12 the terrorists so that the MUP would then have to do whatever it had to
14 You will agree with me that what the general,
15 General Dimitrijevic, here is telling General Ojdanic is not consistent
16 with what was in these reports.
17 A. If you're referring to the report of the security section of the
18 Pristina Corps dated the 19th of December, right at the bottom of this
19 report it says that the combat group of the 15th Armoured Brigade went out
20 to conduct training at Batlavsko Jezero where it had its training area,
21 then that would be it. There is a difference.
22 Q. The difference is that the reports, in particular 1035, were that
23 the groups were engaged in legitimate training exercises, whereas General
24 Dimitrijevic is telling the Chief of Staff that they were not. It was a
25 pretend exercise. So you agree that it's inconsistent to this extent?
1 A. General Dimitrijevic's intervention is quite inconsistent. I
2 can't quite really understand it. He does not believe in what his
3 subordinate is reporting, the chief of section. He says that he has other
4 information. He's not asking the chief of the sector to send a detailed
5 report to him about what had really happened, and if there are any
6 problems or any doubtful parts, he has to speak the truth. He does not
7 tell the Chief of General Staff the foundation for such claims, but simply
8 presents the problems. If I had been in his shoes, if I had presented
9 these data, I would have said fair and square what the data were. I would
10 ask the Chief of General Staff to set up a team, first of all. I would
11 ask the sector chief to send a detailed report, and then I would require
12 that a team be dispatched down to the field and to check what the
13 situation really was.
14 Q. Very well --
15 A. As it is, in my opinion, these are just empty words.
16 Q. Well -- but you would agree with me that General Dimitrijevic
17 found the report -- the reports in respect to Podujevo, and three of them
18 we have, to be unreliable. He did not rely upon them in his personal
19 report to the Chief of General Staff.
20 A. He's the chief of the security administration, and if he goes to
21 the Chief of General Staff he had to have the accurate information and he
22 has to say where he got the different data from. He cannot simply present
23 a problem without explaining what it is all about, because the Chief of
24 the General Staff cannot make any decision based on this. The security
25 administration is there precisely ...
1 Q. Incidentally -- before I move on -- well, I think the point is
2 obvious --
3 JUDGE BONOMY: I wonder, Mr. Gajic, if you're putting the onus on
4 the right person here. What Dimitrijevic is saying is that he doesn't
5 accept that this was a planned exercise, and nobody disagrees with him do
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I do not agree with you. In the
8 conclusion, General Ojdanic asserts that it was confirmed through the 3rd
9 Army command and that it is an exercise. This is in the conclusion of the
10 collegium session.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Is that on a later page?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I believe it's towards the end
13 or at the very end.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Can we see that page, Mr. Stamp, please.
15 MR. STAMP: [Microphone not activated]
16 Sorry. The conclusions begin on page 21.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: And --
18 MR. STAMP: But I'm not -- the witness would need to point to
19 precisely what he's referring to.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, indeed. So can we go to page 21, please.
21 MR. STAMP: I'm not sure what page that is in the B/C/S copy.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Visnjic, can you give us the references?
23 MR. VISNJIC: [Interpretation] Before I check, I think they said
24 that it was page 17, towards the end of the B/C/S version, and it's page
25 18 in e-court, at the bottom of the page, and I'm still looking. Page 17
1 in the English version.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, can you help me, Mr. Gajic, to identify what's
3 said to contradict Dimitrijevic?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] There was a lot of discussion on
5 other topics as well, and it went back and forth, but there is a part
6 where General Ojdanic talks about how through the 3rd Army command this
7 was checked. And in essence, the unit really was in exercises.
8 MR. VISNJIC: Your Honour, I have hard copy for witness --
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, I can see it --
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Here, I've found it.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: -- For myself at the moment, I'm reading it on the
12 page. Well, we can interpret that in due course in the light of all the
14 Please continue, Mr. Stamp.
15 MR. STAMP: Well, I would suggest to the witness that ...
16 Q. General Ojdanic does not say that it was investigated and a
17 conclusion contrary to what General Dimitrijevic had said was the result.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: You -- Mr. Visnjic, is there still a problem?
19 MR. VISNJIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, the question is not
20 clear to me. Is Mr. Stamp reading or --
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Hold on, he's entitled to lead and you can
22 re-examine on this. It's for Mr. Stamp to deal with this how he thinks
24 Mr. Stamp.
25 MR. STAMP: Yes.
1 Q. You had told us that notwithstanding what General Dimitrijevic
2 said, that General -- that General Ojdanic asserted in the conclusion that
3 it was confirmed to the 3rd Army command that it is an exercise. Well,
4 firstly, I suggest to you that General Ojdanic did not say so, that was
5 confirmed that it was an exercise. Do you agree with that or do you
7 A. If you permit me I would like to read the first and the second
8 sentence, please. General Ojdanic states here: It is claimed that the
9 situation at Podujevo was additionally caused by the presence of this
10 unit, which is really just a question of whether the marching direction is
11 correct and the place of its location picked for that, but really it was
12 out in the camp. This is something that I was convinced of by the army
13 commander. However, General Perisic at the time, when he withdrew the
14 conditions of withdrawal.
15 So I do not know why General Dimitrijevic did not ask the same
16 thing from the security person of the Pristina Corps. For sure he had the
17 correct information and had his own information that he received from the
18 security administration, and then the whole truth or the real truth should
19 have been stated. And if anyone had made a mistake, that person should
20 have been called to account. This is what I think.
21 Q. Well -- and you might well correct on what you think, but you will
22 agree with me that the general, the person in charge of the security
23 administration, was not relying on at least three security administration
24 reportings in respect to this matter. He relied on what you just
25 described here as his own information. You will agree with that?
1 A. Well, I wouldn't say that that was his own information. He had
2 another source.
3 Q. Very well.
4 A. Had it been his own information, he would have said that that was
5 his assessment.
6 Q. In respect to President -- withdrawn.
7 In respect to General Dimitrijevic, you said that he had options
8 when he was removed, he was offered a position in the Ministry of Defence.
9 Did he take up that position?
10 A. No.
11 Q. Was General Perisic offered the same position and also refused to
12 take it up?
13 A. General Perisic was offered a position in the federal government,
14 whereas General Dimitrijevic, you're right, was offered a position in the
15 federal Ministry For Defence, the position of the coordinator of the work
16 of the counter-intelligence and the military intelligence service, and he
17 refused that.
18 Q. Thank you.
19 MR. STAMP: Your Honours, I don't know if it's a convenient time.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: It is convenient, Mr. Stamp, yes.
21 We have to break again, Mr. Gajic. It will again be for 20
22 minutes, so we will be starting again at five minutes past 6.00. Could
23 you leave the courtroom, please, with the usher.
24 [The witness stands down]
25 JUDGE BONOMY: I should make it clear before we rise that when we
1 return we will be without Judge Chowhan, who has an important personal
2 matter to deal with. And we've decided that in the circumstances we
3 should continue in the interests of justice; and therefore, we will resume
4 at five past 6.00.
5 --- Recess taken at 5.46 p.m.
6 --- On resuming at 6.06 p.m.
7 [The witness takes the stand]
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stamp.
9 MR. STAMP: Thank you.
10 Q. In paragraph 15 of your statement you spoke about the results of
11 the counter-intelligence -- counter-terrorist operation in Kosovo which
12 you said commenced -- commenced in July. And you said that the security
13 administration department monitored these operations. And during the
14 course of your testimony, probably most of your testimony, you spoke about
15 your reports from the security organs, indicating that during the period
16 of this counter-terrorist offensive evacuations or movement of Kosovar
17 Albanians was caused by actions from the KLA.
18 We have before the Court figures that were published by the UN
19 human -- the United Nations High Commission for Refugees, which show that
20 during the time approximating to when this offensive was going on, from
21 say June to October, the 4th of October, 1998, the amount of displaced
22 persons from Kosovo moved from 57.000 in June to 280.000 in October.
23 Now, what I want to ask you is this: Is it your evidence that
24 this displacement was caused exclusively by the KLA evacuating people?
25 A. No, it wasn't the only reason. There was several reasons, when
1 we're talking about the KLA. So, no, not just that. There were several
3 Q. Was one of the reasons the use of indiscriminate and excessive
4 force by Serbian security forces?
5 A. I don't know what is meant by excessive use of force.
6 Q. Very well.
7 A. I may -- if I may reply. I'm sorry if I seemed impolite, but
8 perhaps I can respond. In Kosovo regarding the tactics of the KLA, it was
9 the practice, quite frequent practice, to fortify houses, settlements,
10 entire villages and to arm them. Previously the population would be moved
11 out or they would stay, and they would open fire at whoever passed. If it
12 was an open road there would be firing at the security forces, civilians,
13 et cetera. And now if the problem was being resolved with such a
14 terrorist force's stronghold, then let's say houses would be destroyed. I
15 don't know if that is excessive use of force. Excessive use of force, in
16 my view, would be if a village was entered and destroyed without any
17 reason or cause. I don't know if I was -- if I managed to --
18 Q. Well, do you know of any -- of instances where Yugoslav forces
19 committed crimes against Kosovar Albanian civilians during the course of
20 this anti-terrorist offensive?
21 A. Yes, I do, and that is why I and General Vasiljevic went to Kosovo
22 in June because there was such criminal instances already, and when we
23 were investigating this problem of the crimes we learned that there were
24 such cases and investigations were launched, they were processed, some
25 were not processed, and so on and so forth. So the answer is: Yes, there
1 were such cases.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Visnjic.
3 MR. VISNJIC: [Interpretation] If the Prosecutor can specify the
4 time-frame that the question relates to, because there's obviously been a
5 misunderstanding between him and the witness.
6 MR. STAMP: Yes.
7 Q. You said "June." I was speaking about 1998, the counter-terrorist
8 offensive in 1998 that you spoke of in your statement. Do you know of the
9 VJ, for example, shelling villages that were populated by civilians?
10 A. We didn't have such information nor did we have information about
11 crimes in the course of 1998, in the course of this anti-terrorist
13 Q. Do you know that the VJ shelled villages in 1998?
14 A. I think that I responded more or less. Perhaps there were such
15 instances of, as you say, shelling, but it's a question of which
16 circumstances prevailed, if it was just purely shelling for the purposes
17 of destruction. There were the anti-terrorist forces then, that meant the
18 terrorist forces were being destroyed. I mean, I don't know, perhaps. I
19 can't really speak about it off the top of my head now, but I do believe
20 that this distinction needs to be made.
21 Q. During the period of that offensive, did your security organs
22 report to you that a variety of diplomats and representatives from the
23 countries of the Contact Group were visiting Kosovo to observe the
24 conditions that obtained there in respect to the offensive?
25 A. The answer is yes, but we had information not only from the
1 counter-intelligence organs from Kosovo. We also had information because
2 we had regular legal contacts with the military and diplomatic
3 representatives of the foreign countries accredited in Belgrade, and we
4 knew that they went to Kosovo.
5 Q. Yes. Now, did your security service or the VJ at any time
6 disclose to these visiting diplomats the information in respect to the
7 evacuation of the Kosovar Albanians from these villages?
8 A. No, because that was not strictly our sphere. There was a special
9 separate administration liaison with foreign military and diplomatic
10 representatives. We did not have contacts of that nature.
11 Q. But all of the Contact Group countries had military attaches,
12 didn't they? For example, there was Colonel Crosland from the British
13 side. Do you know about that?
14 A. When I told you military diplomatic representatives, I was
15 thinking about the military attaches, yes. I know Mr. Crosland; he was
16 the British military attache.
17 Q. And he was one among many -- one among many who conducted tours of
18 these areas with various visiting dignitaries. Did your liaison with the
19 military attaches disclose to them the information that you were receiving
20 in these reports about the movement of Kosovar Albanians at the time?
21 A. I'm not aware of that.
22 Q. Did -- later on when the KVM was there after October, did you
23 disclose to any of the KVM -- any member of the KVM leadership the
24 information in these reports that KVM personnel were involved in assisting
25 the KLA?
1 A. There was a Federal Commission, which I think was entrusted with
2 the implementation of the agreement, if that's what you're thinking from
3 October 1998, and the Federal Commission included not -- I mean had not
4 just our information but other information too. And probably in these
5 contacts, this is my assumption so I don't know, probably they did
6 announce certain things and exchange some information.
7 Q. Well, this is not some information. I'm speaking about specific
8 information now. You are saying that you were engaged in a
9 counter-terrorist operation or a counter-terrorist conflict in that
10 period, and you are saying that members of the KVM were involved in
11 assisting people that you labelled terrorists. Did you make any official
12 complaint to the KVM or any international body in respect to the
13 individuals that you were getting these reports from who were involved in
14 assisting the KLA?
15 A. Yes, I'm sorry, I didn't quite understand your question. Yes, we
16 reported the state and the military leadership. We passed on information,
17 the regular information that we had. There was a list of users who also
18 received this information of ours, and the information, amongst other
19 things, dealt with the matters that you asked me about, although the bulk
20 of the verification mission were honourable and they were performing their
21 duties correctly.
22 Q. What are the names of the individuals you reported were involved
23 according to these security organ reports that are exhibited?
24 A. Well, I'm going to give the example of the chief of mission,
25 Mr. Walker, but it wasn't only our reports. Also reports of other
1 specialised agencies, including the military intelligence agency, and you
2 probably know that there were even some requests to have him dismissed
3 from that position of head of the mission.
4 Q. Mr. Walker was the head of the mission. I'm talking about the KVM
5 personalities or the KVM staff on the ground. Did you report any of them
6 by name for collaboration with the --
7 A. For the most part they were correct, fair, but often a number of
8 them - I don't want to generalise - would go beyond the framework provided
9 by the agreement as far as control of the military was concerned, and also
10 when they were in contact with people from the KLA they were inclined
11 towards them in the sense of tolerating their acts of terrorism and
12 violations of the agreement. Because it is known that the leadership of
13 the KLA never recognised the agreement.
14 Q. Yes, that is not directly -- I'd like to move on. Can you answer
15 me yes, no, I don't know. Do you know of a report being made naming any
16 member of the KVM, apart from the head, of collaborating with the KLA?
17 A. There were such reports, but I could not give you the names now.
18 I could not recall, but there were such reports. I do not remember
19 specific names.
20 Q. To whom were these reports made?
21 A. Well, through regular reporting channels; that is to say, towards
22 the General Staff and the state leadership.
23 Q. That's not what I'm asking you, General. Your evidence is that
24 this international organisation, the OSCE, came into Kosovo to perform a
25 monitoring procedure and that some persons within this organisation were
1 engaged in collaborating with people you call terrorists. Did you make
2 official reports in respect to these people to the OSCE itself or to any
3 international body?
4 A. Well, we could not because the security administration has its
5 superiors; that is to say that it cannot directly send reports to the
6 OSCE. It has to observe the chain of reporting, and we sent this to our
7 superiors. As to what they did with that is -- that's not the affair of
8 the security administration. It's for us to send the information we have,
9 and the user of the information decides how they're going to -- this
10 information is going to be used and presented. This procedure is --
11 Q. I'm sorry to interrupt, but can I take it then that you don't know
12 whether or not any reports naming the individuals that were collaborating
13 were made to the OSCE?
14 A. Yes, I don't know that.
15 Q. The --
16 A. I know that --
17 Q. Do you know whether any of those individuals that were involved in
18 what was reported to you as collaboration with the KLA were withdrawn from
19 Kosovo by the OSCE?
20 A. I don't know about that, and that was not what we dealt with. Our
21 task was to report on what we had, and then other organs, state organs,
22 those in charge, they resolve matters further and they do not have to
23 report back to us as to whether they had done anything about it.
24 Q. Can we move on quickly. Have you ever heard of the Joint Command
25 in Kosovo?
1 A. I have.
2 Q. What was the Joint Command, to your knowledge?
3 A. That was a type of coordinating body. My first information was
4 that it is some coordination, and the information came at the end of June
5 or beginning of July 1998. This information was conveyed to me by
6 General Dimitrijevic, the then-head of the security administration.
7 Q. Do you know what it coordinated?
8 A. As General Dimitrijevic said to me then, the then-President
9 Milosevic sent to Kosovo Mr. Sainovic, who was vice-premier of the federal
10 government, and Mr. Minic, who was president of the federal chamber of the
11 Federal Assembly, to coordinate in Kosovo certain political economic
12 activities and to coordinate activities between the Army of Yugoslavia and
13 the MUP in the struggle against terrorism.
14 Q. Very well. Apart from Mr. Sainovic and Mr. Minic, do you know who
15 were the members of the Joint Command?
16 A. Then I did not know the other members of that body. Later on I
17 found out that there was Mr. Matkovic as well and that
18 Mr. Zoran Andjelkovic joined, too, who was president of the provisional
19 Executive Council and president of the humanitarian organisation of the
20 Red Cross in Kosovo-Metohija.
21 Q. This information you got from Mr. -- From General Dimitrijevic or
22 did you get this later information you speak of from another source?
23 A. As for these two, I found out later. General Dimitrijevic was not
24 the source.
25 Q. Do you know when the Joint Command was terminated?
1 A. As far as I know, it ceased to exist towards the end of October,
2 or rather, after the agreement that was achieved between Mr. Holbrooke and
3 Milosevic when the Federal Commission for the implementation of that
4 agreement was established, and Mr. Sainovic was appointed head of that
5 commission. Officially, that's when.
6 Q. Very well --
7 A. As far as I know.
8 Q. We -- well, do you know of any combat -- or could I show you a
9 document, and perhaps I could ask you to comment on it, P1968. This
10 document has in it an order for the Joint Command of Kosovo dated the 24th
11 of March, 1999 and it's an order to support the MUP in defeating and
12 destroying the terrorist forces in the Drenica sector. Did you know --
13 well, have you ever seen orders like this before?
14 A. No.
15 Q. It's dated the 24th of March, 1999. Having seen that, do you
16 recall whether or not the Joint Command was still in existence in March
18 A. I don't know that. At that time I was representative of the
19 administration in the staff of the Supreme Command, and I just know that
20 in the chain of command and according to regulations, there is no Joint
21 Command. And as the Supreme Command Staff, we had no contacts and no
22 communication in writing or orally with a Joint Command. For us there was
23 the command of the 3rd Army and the command of the Pristina Corps.
24 Q. Very well. Can we move on to the Supreme Command, since you
25 mentioned that.
1 MR. STAMP: Can we look at 3D728, please.
2 Q. And I just -- I'm going to ask you to read something and explain
3 to us the meaning of this.
4 MR. STAMP: We have it here. Can we go to page 3 in the English,
5 please, and that's the end of the document in both English and B/C/S, the
6 third -- the last page of the document.
7 Q. This is one of the briefing notes that you were shown, it's dated
8 the 11th of April, 1999, and it is one that you participated in, according
9 to the front page of it. Can you read the reference at the bottom from
10 where you see: "Colonel-General Ojdanic" and tell us what that is about.
11 A. Excuse me, which section are you referring to towards the bottom?
12 Could you help me with the bullet points, perhaps, the first, second,
13 third one from the bottom or could you give me some guide-line what I
14 should read or should I just give my opinion?
15 Q. From the second one from the bottom, and that is where it appears
16 that Colonel-General Ojdanic speaks, that's where you see Colonel-General
18 A. It's this part here.
19 "During the course of the evening correct directives in relation
20 to ours" -- and then it says: "Attended by present" -- is that what
21 you're referring to?
22 Q. Yes?
23 A. I'm sorry, what is the date -- what was the date?
24 Q. That is the 11th of April, 1999. It says: "Submit a draft plan
25 for study, the briefing will be at 0900 hours with the Supreme Command,"
1 and then it goes on: "Present," and it lists a group of people?
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Zecevic.
3 MR. ZECEVIC: I'm sorry, Your Honour, the original says: "VK,"
4 which can be Supreme Command but it can also be a supreme commander as
5 well. The abbreviation in Serbian is VK. It's the very same for both.
6 MR. STAMP: Very well, the --
7 Q. You heard that, General. Can you explain just the meaning of this
9 A. I don't know what this is about. I see that some meeting was
10 envisaged, now was it with the supreme commander, possibly. What the
11 gentleman said just now, both are possible, and also I see who was
12 present. But this is the first time I see this. I really cannot give any
14 Q. Doesn't it indicate that present at the meeting at 0900 hours is
15 anticipated to be the chief of the operations administration
16 Lieutenant-General Smiljanic and other persons, is that your understanding
17 of this document?
18 A. Well, yes. One can see exactly who was present, probably at some
19 briefing related to a plan, as far as I can see. But what this was, I
20 really do not know. I assume that it is a meeting with the supreme
21 commander, that is to say Milosevic. But if I were to say anything, I'm
22 afraid that I would not be of great assistance to you.
23 Q. Very well --
24 A. I really don't know what this means PPR Sainovic, I don't know
25 what that refers to.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Stamp suggested you were present at this
2 briefing; is that correct?
3 MR. STAMP: Yes, well maybe if I could remind him -- yes, he was
4 present at the meeting, that is recorded on the document.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes, but I don't remember this.
6 MR. STAMP:
7 Q. Isn't this -- well, first, isn't this list of persons here the
8 persons who were expected to attend the meeting of the Supreme Command at
9 0900 hours to study a draft plan? Can you recall that?
10 A. No, I don't.
11 Q. You see where it says Sainovic, what does it say before that?
12 A. And Sreten, adjutant of the MUP unit from Kosovo. But he's not
13 the adjutant, I don't know. That's how it was translated. Maybe that's
14 how it was translated, the translation is wrong.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Who would be translating it?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I don't know, but it says here
17 [B/C/S spoken] the adjutant of the MUP unit in Kosovo and that kind of a
18 function did not exist.
19 MR. STAMP:
20 Q. Well, these -- it's -- these briefings according to you are
21 prepared by military documents. It is possible that the person taking the
22 record did not know the precise rank of somebody in the MUP. But would
23 you agree with me that having regard to the persons here that the
24 reference -- and when I say the persons, the rank of the person, the
25 reference to Sreten, adjutant for the MUP unit from Kosovo, is a reference
1 to Sreten Lukic?
2 A. I think I can agree with you.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Can you read what follows? There are two other
4 parts to this after "MUP unit from Kosovo," what does the rest of it say?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Are you asking me, sir, to say it?
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] PPR stands for vice-president or --
8 and Colonel-General Pavkovic.
9 MR. STAMP:
10 Q. So it is -- based on how you read this, this is Vice-President
11 Sainovic and Colonel-General Pavkovic?
12 A. Yes, precisely.
13 Q. The Supreme Command met how frequently, do you know?
14 A. In what period, if you could be more specific.
15 Q. During the war.
16 A. The Supreme Command Staff with the Chief of Staff was at the
17 command post and General Ojdanic --
18 Q. The Supreme Command.
19 A. Well, I don't have that information at disposal, that I don't
20 know. But I know that General Ojdanic went to the Commander-in-Chief,
21 President Milosevic, to submit a report on the previous 24-hour period
22 about the activities in that period, and then they'd study this report.
23 And if Milosevic had any remarks to make, any suggestions, any tasks, I
24 know that he would go to see him at a certain time.
25 Q. During the war in 1998 [sic], and I'm moving on now, who was the
1 member of the Supreme Command responsible for the operation of the
2 military courts? And may I just say I mean the Supreme Command Staff, who
3 was a member of the Supreme Command Staff responsible for the operations
4 of the military courts?
5 A. Nobody on the Supreme Command Staff. The military prosecutor's
6 offices and the military courts were under the jurisdiction of the federal
7 minister of defence and the federal defence ministry, and in the General
8 Staff there was a sector, the mobilisation and status issues sector.
9 There was an administration that dealt with legislative issues, control,
10 and so on. So courts were under the jurisdiction of the federal defence
11 ministry. They were under civilian control.
12 Q. And that is the military courts?
13 A. Yes, precisely. They were under the jurisdiction of the federal
14 ministry. The judges took their oath before the federal defence minister.
15 The General Staff did not have any jurisdiction over military courts.
16 Q. Are you in a position to tell us how many reports about crimes
17 committed by officers during the war in 1998 [sic] were submitted by the
18 VJ to the military courts?
19 A. As far as I know, military courts --
20 MR. BAKRAC: [Interpretation] I apologise. I failed to intervene
21 before, but could we clarify that. For the second time Mr. Stamp is
22 asking a question about the war in 1998. I don't know whether there was
23 any war in 1998 -- I may have missed it, but this may mislead the witness.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes --
25 MR. STAMP: I'm sorry.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Before we move back to the question.
2 Mr. Visnjic, can you look at line 9, please, page 89 and the last
3 sentence. Is that what the witness actually said?
4 MR. VISNJIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I heard the witness say
5 that. That also sounded strange to me, but on the other hand the question
6 that precedes this answer is a bit troublesome. When I look at the
7 question and when I look at the answer, I myself can't tell what is right
8 and what is wrong.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: All that matters is that we have a correction
10 reflection of what was said. It can be resolved by other questions later.
11 So let's revert to where we are, Mr. Stamp, and what you're asking
12 is whether -- whether the witness knows the number of reports of --
13 submitted by the VJ to military courts about crimes committed by officers
14 during --
15 MR. STAMP: 1999 --
16 JUDGE BONOMY: -- The war in 1999.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I know that at those briefings the
18 chief of the sector that I just mentioned for mobilisation and status
19 issues submitted reports on the reports received from military courts, and
20 I think that at the end the figure stood at between 16 and 18.000 criminal
21 reports that had been filed. And 90 per cent, perhaps even more, related
22 to draft dodging.
23 MR. STAMP:
24 Q. Now, you're saying you think. Who was the chief of the sector?
25 A. Well, it would be difficult for me.
1 Q. Who was the chief of the sector? Who would know?
2 A. The chief of the sector at that time was the -- was Risto Ratovic,
3 General Risto Ratovic, late general. But the legal administration was
4 part of the part of this sector. It was an expert service. It had no
5 jurisdiction over the military courts, but the military courts would
6 regularly submit reports to this administration about the number of cases
7 with the break-down of the kind of cases and so on, merely to keep them
9 Q. There were in the course of your evidence many references made to
10 orders that the military courts should be made to function efficiently,
11 orders by General Ojdanic. Do you recall these orders?
12 A. I think that there was just one task related to a meeting between
13 General Ojdanic and the representatives of the military prosecutor --
14 military prosecutor's office and military courts, and I think that it was
15 held on the 28th of May, 1999. The purpose of this meeting was, or
16 rather, General Ojdanic insisted that the criminal reports should be dealt
17 with more effectively and more expeditiously, particularly for acts that
18 are in contravention of international law of war and Geneva Conventions.
19 Q. Did you attend that meeting?
20 A. No, General Geza Farkas was there and he conveyed this to us.
21 Q. You spoke earlier that in respect to arming civilians - and I'm
22 moving on quickly to another topic - this was a problem for the VJ, it was
23 not something that the VJ supported. Was it the policy of the VJ to arm
24 Serbian civilians in villages and to disarm Albanians in villages?
25 A. No.
1 Q. Very well.
2 A. The policy of the army --
3 Q. Very well. In 1998, was the army involved in arming over 40.000
4 Serb civilians in Kosovo?
5 A. We had information presented by General Samardzic, who was the 3rd
6 Army commander, that this figure was right, that this was the number of
7 civilians that had weapons, but he explained why.
8 Q. He said it was 47.000 civilians that had been armed, do you
9 recall? Do you recall that?
10 A. I think that the figure you just provided is more or less
12 Q. So you will agree with me then that for whatever reason it was a
13 policy to arm the Serbian civilians in Kosovo?
14 A. Well, I wouldn't call that a policy. I would rather call it a
15 measure that was forced, where the hand was forced, because at that time
16 Kosovo had already been cleansed of the majority of the Serbs and
17 Montenegrins and also the undesirable Albanians. I already noted that
18 they suffered just as much as Serbs did, the undesirable Albanians.
19 Q. When you told us that or -- withdrawn.
20 You told us that you -- that General Ojdanic ordered that
21 13.000 -- 1300 copies of the rules in respect to international law be
22 distributed to his officers. Was it a part of officer training that the
23 rules of international humanitarian law should be observed?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. And wouldn't officers of the VJ be familiar with international
1 humanitarian law? You can answer yes or no or ...
2 A. Yes and no.
3 Q. Well, tell us about no. There were officers in the VJ that you'd
4 expect were not familiar with international humanitarian law?
5 A. Not in this sense, but in the sense that there were quite a lot of
6 reserve officers who had not undergone that kind of training or who had
7 forgotten it, and they should have gone through some refresher training,
8 they should have been reminded about the fact that this was one of the
9 priority issues.
10 Q. Wouldn't it then be prudent to ensure that this information that
11 these persons might not be familiar with was circulated around the 24th or
12 the 23rd of March when a state of war was declared or even before that?
13 A. Well, again, yes and no, because at the beginning of the war other
14 information was disseminated through the administration for morale and
15 information, aimed at officers about humanitarian law. But here the chief
16 of the Supreme Command Staff considered that those copies should be
17 distributed in order for them to be studied in even greater detail and
18 abided by, because there already had been some problems with the conduct
19 of the reservists that we had encountered. And the Chief of Staff then
20 decided to underscore this and to bind all the commands and all the
22 Q. This circulation of 1300 documents occurred I think it was in
23 April, and you also referred us to orders that you call preventive orders
24 that were issued in April and May of 1999. Are you aware, sir, that most
25 of the crimes or almost all the crimes that this trial specifically is
1 focused on occurred before these orders were issued?
2 A. Yes, the NATO bombing was there.
3 Q. That by early April before these orders were issued, the crimes
4 against the Kosovar Albanians and the expulsion of the Kosovar Albanians
5 had for the most part taken place already, do you know that?
6 A. Yes, I know that.
7 MR. STAMP: I see the clock. Could I show one document before
8 I -- could we look at 3D928, please. This is a -- I think I have the
9 wrong exhibit number. Yes, 3D928, correct.
10 Q. These are the briefing notes of the 11th of April -- or 15th of
12 MR. STAMP: And if we could just move to the last page, the last
13 paragraph of the document.
14 Q. This, I remind you, is dated the 15th of April. One of the
15 proposals that came out of this briefing is -- you see that:
16 "Considering the that the full intensity of western propaganda is
17 focused on quoting ethnic cleansing of the Albanians by the Serbs as a
18 reason for the bombing which meets the approval of the western public so
19 there are no protests against the NATO aggression we propose: 1, that an
20 order be sent by the Chief of Staff of the Supreme Command to all units
21 demanding strict adherence to the law, rules, and morale conduct of the
22 VJ; and 2, that information service of the staff of the Supreme Command
23 publicly denied that the VJ engaged in ethnic cleansing."
24 Would you agree with me that these orders that you discussed for
25 April and May as well as the order to distribute these brochures was a
1 token effort made for the purposes of counter-propaganda?
2 A. I could not agree with you. I think that this was done in all
4 Q. Very well but --
5 A. But --
6 Q. -- Having regard to what you just said here, the proposals at this
7 meeting in April, you don't think that it was even partly, partly for the
8 purpose to counter the propaganda, as you call it, in the western media?
9 A. Well, all right. The propaganda was really terrible and there was
10 a great deal of manipulation going on and it could be accepted that this
11 did have a certain influence, but that was not the basis. That was not
12 the basis. The basis was a sincere intention to observe laws, observe
13 regulations, and the army really insisted on that. I was a member of this
14 Supreme Command Staff and I know how much this was insisted upon, to have
15 the army remain with its honour intact.
16 Q. Very well.
17 MR. STAMP: I think that is it, Your Honour, but I would not want
18 to say the close of the cross-examination until tomorrow morning.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you, Mr. Stamp.
20 You'll be on your own tomorrow morning, and we'll be here in the
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] And, Mr. Bonomy, I have six
23 grandchildren, you will have to explain to them why you're keeping me this
24 long; this was a joke of course.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, you know the routine by now, that you have to
1 come back tomorrow, quarter past 2.00, 2.15, tomorrow. I anticipate your
2 evidence will be concluded tomorrow, so you can probably safely
3 communicate to your grandchildren that you will be returning to see them
4 fairly soon. Meanwhile, please remember what I said before about not
5 having any communication about the evidence with anybody at all between
6 now and then. Could you now please leave the courtroom with the usher.
7 [The witness stands down]
8 JUDGE BONOMY: And we shall resume at 2.15.
9 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 7.08 p.m.,
10 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 12th day of
11 September, 2007, at 2.15 p.m.