1 Thursday, 29 November 2007
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.00 a.m.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Just one matter I could deal with while Mr. Delic
6 is coming into court.
7 Mr. Cepic, you've asked about exhibits from the bar table and the
8 timing of any motion for these. It seems to us that these applications
9 should be made at the earliest possible date now. If they're left until
10 the end of your case, then it is going to be very difficult to deal with
11 them in a reasonable way the closer we get to the end of the whole trial.
12 It's in everyone's interests that everything is in our hands at the
13 earliest possible opportunity. So albeit, there will be some that you
14 will inevitably have to deal with at the close of your case. What we
15 would like you to do is deal with the bulk of them as you go along even if
16 it means making more than one application, so that those you are able to
17 deal with now should be dealt with now and so on and another batch
18 possibly when we come back after the recess.
19 [The witness entered court]
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Now, Mr. Ivetic, the same applies in your case,
21 inevitably there will be documents you seek to have admitted. There's an
22 even greater onus on you because of the position you have at the tail end
23 of this to get your application in at a fairly early stage in the
24 presentation of your case. We hope not to make an order about this; but
25 unless we see some action in response, we will make an order and it's in
1 everyone's interest to try to avoid that.
2 MR. IVETIC: Yes, Your Honour. We have for our part submitted
3 those documents already for translation so we hope to have translations,
4 hopefully, by the time we get back from the winter recess.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
6 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: I know that you've inquired about it and it is
8 important I think that you understand what would be easiest in everyone's
9 interests for the Trial Chamber to deal with.
10 Good morning, Mr. Delic.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. President.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Your examination by Mr. Cepic will continue in a
13 moment. Please bear in mind that the solemn declaration to speak the
14 truth which you gave at the outset of your evidence will continue to apply
15 to that evidence start to finish, and in particular applies to your
16 evidence today.
17 Mr. Cepic.
18 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
19 WITNESS: BOZIDAR DELIC [Resumed]
20 [Witness answered through interpreter]
21 Examination by Mr. Cepic: [Continued]
22 Q. [Interpretation] General, good morning.
23 A. Good morning.
24 Q. Have you had a good rest?
25 A. Well, enough.
1 Q. We broke off with the beginning of the war. You made some
2 markings on a map last night towards the end of our sitting hours. Could
3 you tell me what the main tasks of your unit were from the beginning of
4 the war onwards.
5 A. In view of the fact that my unit defended the state border
6 directly, the basic task was the blocking defence of the border; the
7 second was the protection of units and military facilities; the third task
8 was the protection of roads and the territory, communication routes and
9 the territory.
10 Q. Thank you, General.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Are you about to depart from this map now or are
12 you going to continue with it?
13 MR. CEPIC: Not now, Your Honour, maybe later.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Hannis, do you have any more information on the
15 origin of this map?
16 MR. HANNIS: Your Honour, this map, 5D1332, appears to be the same
17 map that was used in the Milosevic trial. It was Exhibit D300, tab 487.
18 Now, Your Honour raised some questions about it at the time at transcript
19 page 41908. Mr. Delic informed you at that time, Your Honour, that this
20 was a photocopy of the map that he had used in 1999. You asked him where
21 the original was and he said that was in Belgrade in the archive. So what
22 this is appears to be a photocopy that was produced by Mr. Milosevic
23 during this witness's testimony in July -- actually, July 6th, 2005.
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
25 Mr. Cepic.
1 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
2 [Trial Chamber confers]
3 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
4 Q. General, in war conditions, how did the command system function?
5 A. The command system functioned in the usual way, nevertheless, it
6 was hindered because the communications systems were destroyed. The first
7 targets of the NATO aggressor during the first few days of the war, in
8 addition to the PVO centres, were the communication centres of the Army of
9 Yugoslavia. All centres of communications in Kosovo and Metohija were hit
10 during the first few days, inter alia my communication centre was hit as
11 well, and then civilian centres and repeaters were hit. So communications
12 with our superior command were therefore impeded, and that's the way
13 things were throughout the war. However, I can say that the communication
14 system, both along horizontal and vertical lines, functioned as envisaged
15 by the rules.
16 Q. General, within your unit, did you have any volunteers?
17 A. Yes. Within my unit there were several volunteers. They came
18 from the centres where communications -- volunteers gathered in Belgrade
19 and in Nis.
20 Q. Did they undergo a certain triage at these centres?
21 A. As far as I know, in the centres their psychological and physical
22 fitness were checked, how trained they were from the point of view of
23 their military evidentiary specialty, and those who were fit from the
24 point of view of their health were sent further on to Nis. And from Nis
25 depending on the needs of the units involved and depending on the
1 decisions made by the command, they were sent to our units. That is how I
2 got them in my brigade too.
3 Q. Thank you. General, did you carry out additional triage within
4 your brigade once they came in?
5 A. Yes. According to establishment, a brigade has one psychologist
6 in peacetime. In peacetime, I did not have a psychologist, but during the
7 war I got two of them; one of them got killed during the war. And they
8 were used precisely for that purpose, to tour units so that commanders and
9 commanding officers could send soldiers, not only volunteers, but
10 soldiers, reservists, to them because not everyone experiences war in the
11 same way. Therefore, in accordance with the instructions of the
12 psychologists, we sent some people further on, to military medical
13 commissions, most often to Nis. And a number of people, I think that the
14 percentage would be 1 per cent, perhaps a bit more than that, were
15 released during the war. We released them because they were not capable,
16 from the point of view of their health and psychologically speaking, to
17 take part in combat action.
18 Q. Thank you. General.
19 MR. CEPIC: Could we have Exhibit Number P02082, please. Thank
20 you. I will follow your instruction.
21 Q. [Interpretation] General, can you see the document in front of
23 A. I see the document, however, could it please be zoomed in a bit.
24 MR. CEPIC: Could you zoom in.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Now it's fine.
1 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
2 Q. General, is this your signature down there at the bottom?
3 A. Yes, this is my document that was created on the basis of the
4 order of the command of the Pristina Corps.
5 Q. We can see paragraph 1 here, paragraph 2 of this order. Does this
6 confirm what you said to us previously?
7 A. Yes. This is an order to my commanders and commanding officers to
8 analyse all volunteers and reservists because for soldiers we already had
9 all this information. I'm telling them to follow their behaviour and also
10 that if they noticed that some of them seem distressed or disturbed in any
11 way, they should be sent further on for medical check-ups.
12 Q. Thank you, General. General, in this courtroom the term
13 "excessive use of force" has been used and continues to be used. Can you
14 tell me whether your units engaged in excessive use of force?
15 A. As for my units specifically, I can say that it never used
16 excessive force, not in 1998, not in 1999.
17 Q. Thank you. We've already heard from General Maisonneuve about
18 1998, or rather, about your unit. Could you tell us how were combat
19 resources used during the course of the war?
20 A. During the course of the war, combat resources on the border
21 during the operation Strela 2, Arrow 2, when the aggressor and enemy used
22 everything known to the modern world, we used all the resources we had
23 available. However, in this anti-terrorist struggle from the beginning of
24 1998 until the beginning of the aggression, combat resources were used on
25 a selective basis. As for armoured equipment, tanks, they were there, but
1 due to a large number of aggressor aircraft in the air, they practically
2 did not open fire. Other equipment was used, weapons carried by soldiers
3 or some that are manned by a few soldiers like recoilless guns, and so on,
4 however, selectively in terms of firing points that were observed.
5 Q. General, I would be interested in the following. During the war
6 period, did the institutions of the state function?
7 A. I am talking about my own zone here in particular. In my zone all
8 institutions of the state did function in the town of Pristina, which is
9 the head of the district; the district functioned; the municipality
10 functioned; the judiciary; the prosecutor's office; the customs office;
11 the taxation system; the health system absolutely; the public utilities.
12 After all, this was also established by different journalists who came to
13 the town of Prizren. All institutions of the system of the functioned up
14 until the very last day.
15 Q. General, were units of the civil defence and civil protection
16 resubordinated to you?
17 A. The units of the civil defence and civil protection were not
18 resubordinated to me because they are linked to the Ministry of Defence.
19 Q. Thank you.
20 A. In all fairness, I saw the commander of civil defence a few times
21 because he also had his obligations in terms of protecting facilities in
22 the town of Pristina and he had the obligation to protect a few bridges.
23 So in order to avoid any misunderstandings or any accidents, friendly fire
24 and the like, before he took up the facilities that he was protecting he
25 notified me that his unit is protecting those two bridges. According to
1 the plan of use of units of civilian defence, that's the way it was
2 supposed to be. Civilian protection units were engaged a few times when
3 some parts of the town of Prizren were hit during the NATO bombing. They
4 were dealing with the consequences there, providing relief.
5 Q. Thank you, General. Were MUP units resubordinated to you?
6 A. MUP units were not resubordinated to the Army of Yugoslavia and in
7 my zone to my unit. They had their own line of command, their own chain
8 of command, and with them with regard to certain matters, when certain
9 tasks were being carried out we had coordination with them, but otherwise
10 we cooperated as state organs that are in a particular territory and that
11 have certain obligations vis-a-vis each other.
12 Q. Thank you, General. Just very briefly, did you have any losses
13 due to terrorist activity and NATO attacks?
14 A. Yes. My unit had rather significant losses, especially in 1999.
15 In 1998, due to terrorist attacks, I had four dead soldiers and four dead
16 officers and 12 wounded soldiers. In 1999 in my unit or those that were
17 linked to my unit, all in all, including 1998, there were 87 soldiers
18 killed or in my zone, 96 soldiers killed and almost 300 wounded soldiers
19 and -- now, was it 21 or 22 kidnapped soldiers. And we know today that
20 they had all been killed.
21 Q. General, Colonel Crosland testified before this Trial Chamber and
22 he mentioned he knew you. On that occasion we discussed the issue of
23 losses during the pull-out from Kosovo and Metohija. Did you have losses
24 then as well?
25 A. Yes. I met with Colonel Crosland just before the pull-out, and he
1 was one of the leading men who visited my zone in 1998 and 1999 as part of
2 the OSCE mission. He appeared again before the end of the war, but as an
3 officer of the British army. I had six troops kidnapped and two dead
4 during the pull-out.
5 Q. [No interpretation]
6 THE INTERPRETER: Could counsel please repeat the question.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Cepic, could you repeat that question, please.
8 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. General, it wasn't recorded. I have to repeat my question. What
10 happened to those who were kidnapped?
11 A. Concerning one number of the kidnapped, two who were from Prizren,
12 I know that they're dead because their bodies were handed over and buried,
13 I believe, in Belgrade.
14 Q. Thank you. A moment ago you mentioned the Strela 2 action. Can
15 you tell us what that was about, when it began, and which forces were
16 involved, and whether there were any attacks on your unit?
17 A. Strela 2 or Arrow 2 is an action organized jointly by terrorist
18 forces and NATO forces. The terrorist forces attacked on land with the
19 support of the artillery of the Albanian army, which was actively involved
20 in the attack, and the aviation of the NATO Alliance. This operation
21 began early in the morning on the 26th of May and it lasted -- it
22 continued after those first negotiations started. The negotiations were
23 already concluded when the NATO continued its air-strikes all the way up
24 to 8th or 9th of June, after the signing. Again, I had losses in those
25 last days of the war when it was already decided that the army would
1 withdraw from the territory of Kosovo and Metohija. NATO commander
2 Wesley Clark says in his book: Although we signed the agreement [as
3 interpreted], we continued the air-strikes, we continued to bomb them.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: That has been accurately translated, has it?
5 Although we signed the agreement, we continued the air-strikes. Is that
6 correct, Mr. Delic?
7 MR. CEPIC: Correct. We can ask the witness again.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: No.
9 Mr. Delic, is that what you said: Although the agreement was
10 signed, we continued the air-strikes, quoting Clark?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The agreement was signed already on
12 the 3rd of June -- in fact, it was agreed, it was reached on the 3rd of
13 June, and my last significant losses were on the 8th of June, that means
14 four or five days after it was agreed in Belgrade that the war would stop.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: It's a simple matter of precision. You said a
16 moment ago that the strikes continued even after agreement had been
17 reached, right up to the signing of the agreement. Then you are recorded
18 as saying that even after the signing of the agreement, the bombing
19 continued, according to Wesley Clark. Now, is that last part what you are
20 actually saying, that the bombing was said to have continued after the
21 agreement was actually signed?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I heard now several words in the
23 interpretation that are simply not correct. It's somehow differently
24 worded about those air-strikes. On the 3rd, as far as I remember, the 3rd
25 of June, a cease-fire was agreed. My last losses and the last heavy
1 bombardment by strategic aviation was on the 8th of June, and later I read
2 in the book written by Wesley Clark these words: Although we agreed a
3 cease-fire, we bombed them because we were thinking that Milosevic might
4 renege on the agreement again. I can find later the exact page on
5 Wesley Clark's book.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: That's very helpful, but please understand that
7 what was translated for us was that after the signing of the agreement the
8 bombing continued, according to Wesley Clark, and precision on this is
9 important and the matter has now been clarified.
10 Mr. Cepic.
11 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
12 Could we have on our screens Exhibit Number 5D916, please.
13 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
14 MR. CEPIC: Your Honour, may I continue?
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes.
16 MR. CEPIC: Thank you. We have just a partial translation of this
17 document, but I spoke to my learned friend Mr. Hannis and I think that he
18 hasn't got any objection about this document.
19 MR. HANNIS: Well, Your Honour, I said that given the fact that it
20 appears I won't have to start my cross-examination until next Tuesday, I
21 think I will have an opportunity to see if I need a further translation.
22 Mr. Cepic indicated he would request a full translation. In the meantime,
23 I'll have time to consult with a language assistant, so I'm willing to
24 proceed with this one today.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: That's very helpful, Mr. Hannis. Thank you.
1 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Please continue, Mr. Cepic.
3 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
4 Q. General, what is this document?
5 A. This document is an interim report from my brigade for the 27th of
6 May, and it's obvious that I dictated it directly to the typist. And it
7 recounts the beginning of the land attack in the Strela action on the axis
8 Planeja. I explain that there are three combat lines and that if my
9 officers noticed there were around 1.000 members of Siptar terrorist
10 forces, massive artillery is being used, multiple rocket-launchers and
11 mortars from the Albanian side by the Albanian army. By 1600 hours on the
12 27th, they managed to reach and capture a certain line into our territory.
13 It also relates to our losses, our dead and wounded. And my main problem
14 is I'm reporting to the commander is that we have a small number of
15 soldiers and a very large area, so the defence does not have the necessary
16 depth. The losses are one dead, four seriously wounded, and six less
17 seriously wounded. I suggest certain measures to the commander, and I
18 request that some of the corps artillery be sent to me to support my
19 forces on this axis.
20 Q. General, which mountain is this where the combat took place?
21 A. Mount Pastrik. Its highest peak is 1980 [as interpreted] metres.
22 Q. Thank you.
23 A. Just for the benefit of the Trial Chamber let me say that the line
24 of the border crosses the peak of that mountain, goes along the peak, and
25 the peak of that mountain is on the elevation, it goes along the
2 Q. Just tell me, what is the highest peak of that mountain?
3 A. 1988 metres.
4 MR. CEPIC: I'm sorry, again mistake in transcript, he said
5 1.000 -- oh, okay, that's fine. Thank you. Thank you.
6 Q. [Interpretation] General, you mentioned General Clark in his book.
7 I would like exhibit P82 --
8 MR. HANNIS: Your Honour, if I may. If we're going to introduce
9 General Clark's book, let's introduce the whole book.
10 MR. CEPIC: Your Honour, I just need one short paragraph for
11 identification, not the whole book.
12 [Trial Chamber confers]
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Cepic, the way for you to deal with this is to
14 have any necessary passage read from the book.
15 Mr. Hannis, you're going to have to justify introducing any
16 passages at appropriate stages in cross-examination or wherever along the
17 line you see the opportunity, and we'll address that as and when it
19 So please continue, Mr. Cepic.
20 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
21 Could we have 5 -- P823, please, in B/C/S that is a page 185, in
22 English it is the page 188, please. Right-hand page in English, also in
23 B/C/S. Could you zoom in, please, page 371 in B/C/S. Thank you, that's
24 perfect. In English, that is the page 335 -- the last paragraph,
25 actually, paragraph before the last one.
1 Q. [Interpretation] General, would you please read the paragraph
2 beginning with the words "on Monday morning ..."
3 A. Yes, I found it.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Hannis.
5 MR. HANNIS: I'm sorry, Your Honour, could my learned friend
6 advise me where on the notification this exhibit was listed. I'm not
7 finding it at the moment. Perhaps there was a supplementary, but I don't
8 see it in my list of exhibits for this witness.
9 MR. CEPIC: We informed -- we informed promptly -- we informed
10 promptly OTP about this exhibit, Your Honour.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Hannis --
12 MR. CEPIC: My assistant has been dealing with that issue and we
13 will solve that as soon as is possible.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, it can hardly be said there's any prejudice
15 to the Prosecution, who a moment ago wanted the whole book in, so please
17 MR. CEPIC: Thank you.
18 Q. [Interpretation] General, would you please read this paragraph.
19 A. "On Monday morning, we started receiving reports that the KLA was
20 barely hanging onto the top of Mount Pastrik. At the video-televised
21 conference, I could not have been clearer with Mike Short and Jay Hendrix.
22 'By 1.00,' I directed, 'you're going to tell me what you're going to do to
23 help the KLA hold the top of that mountain. That mountain is not going to
24 be lost. We're not going to have Serbs on the top of that mountain.
25 We'll have to pay for the top of that hill with American blood if we don't
1 help the KLA hold it now. That's my number-one priority.'"
2 Q. Thank you, General.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: What's your question?
4 MR. CEPIC: If you'll allow me, Your Honour, I just start it.
5 Q. [Interpretation] Do these words of General Clark confirm your
6 assertion that the American army was helping the KLA?
7 A. At that time I was not aware of these words of General Clark, but
8 I felt in the field the power of the NATO Alliance, the strength it was
9 using against small tactical units such as those that I had on Mount
10 Pastrik. On that day and the days that followed, in addition to bombing
11 by regular aviation, aircraft F-16, A-10, and other aircraft that the NATO
12 disposed of, I felt for the first time bombardment by strategic aviation,
13 B-52 planes. On the ground it felt like being bombed by atomic bombs
14 because the whole mountain was obscured by smoke and the mushrooms
15 resulting from the B-52 bombing, it's so-called carpet bombing.
16 Q. Was that bombing to provide support or was its significance
18 A. It was direct support to the KLA. Strategic bombing was supposed
19 to clear the way for the destruction of our units which were defending the
20 state border to clear up the situation so that the KLA could break out as
21 soon as possible into the Drina valley and arrive at the city of Prizren
22 itself, just as the NATO spokesperson, Jimmy Shea had already announced
23 one day.
24 THE INTERPRETER: Jamie Shea, Interpreter's correction.
25 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. General, as a result of that bombing, were there any consequences
2 in the villages on the border?
3 A. All the villages were razed to the ground.
4 Q. Can you enumerate some of these villages?
5 A. Planeja, Saj Mahala, Binaj, Ninaj, these are the ones I remember
6 without looking at a map.
7 Q. Thank you.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Just one moment, Mr. Cepic.
9 [Trial Chamber confers]
10 JUDGE BONOMY: It seems to us, Mr. Cepic, that nothing that has
11 been said by Mr. Delic in relation to this matter depends on what's in the
12 book, and you were very keen, as were a number of the other accused, to
13 ensure that General Clark did not give evidence here and we refused to
14 allow him to give evidence. It therefore seems, on the face of it, rather
15 inappropriate that you should then start introducing his material without
16 anyone having an opportunity to challenge him on it or hear what he has to
17 say on it.
18 Now, the situation may be different in another context and you may
19 come to something else in the book that we have to address in particular,
20 but for the moment it seems to us that none of the answers given by
21 Mr. Delic are actually enhanced or depend in any way on what's in the
22 book. It would be far better for us to hear continuously throughout this
23 about his personal knowledge of events.
24 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
25 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Delic, how many of your men were lost at
1 Pastrik on that occasion?
2 A. I think 29 soldiers were killed by NATO bombs.
3 Q. Thank you, sir. General --
4 A. And about 200 soldiers were wounded. I'm saying that because the
5 number of wounded is something I'm telling you, relying only on my memory.
6 [Defence counsel confer]
7 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. General, were there any refugees just before the onset of the
10 A. Well, the aggression began on the 24th, in the evening, and there
11 was some refugees, although not very many, on the 24th. The population
12 that was outside their houses had existed even before that period, but
13 these were internally displaced persons. They remained on the territory
14 of Kosovo and Metohija. The first refugees started on my territory on the
15 24th, and they turned up to a greater or lesser extent throughout the
16 aggression; after the 15th or the 20th of April, this decreased in
18 [Trial Chamber and legal officer confer]
19 MR. CEPIC: Your Honour, may I continue, please? Thank you.
20 Could we have on our screens Exhibit Number 5D885.
21 Q. [Interpretation] General, is this your document?
22 A. Yes. This is a document that I myself wrote, addressing it to the
23 corps commander and the corps command.
24 Q. Thank you. We see that here you mention a large number of
25 refugees and that this is a major problem. Can you please explain the
1 second paragraph of this document.
2 A. The second paragraph?
3 "At our insistence a small number of persons returned to their
4 places of residence, while others waited to be allowed to enter the
5 Republic of Albania."
6 Q. Did you mention the reasons they gave you when you interviewed
7 them as to why they wanted to leave the country?
8 A. I enumerated the reasons here which I personally heard from the
9 refugees in my interviews with them on the roads in the vicinity of
10 Prizren and on the roads leading to the border. One of the reasons was
11 fear of the impending fighting between our forces and the KLA and NATO on
12 the other side.
13 Q. And what would be another reason?
14 A. A number of Siptars said they were leaving the country in order
15 not to be forcibly mobilised into the KLA. A number of persons stated
16 that they were afraid of the army and the police, especially Arkan's
17 soldiers. I asked them if they had ever seen Arkan's army and not a
18 single one of them could confirm that. They all said they had heard about
19 it from others.
20 Q. What about (d), paragraph (d)?
21 A. I can't see it. Can the document be moved.
22 MR. CEPIC: Can we scroll down, please. And page 2 in English and
23 zoom out.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Fear of NATO bombing was emphasised
25 as the primary reason because, as they said, they do not distinguish
1 between troops and civilians and do not look where they are striking. My
2 conclusion was that although in the first few days there had not been a
3 lot of air-strikes on civilian targets. Most of them had been on military
4 targets. We felt that this fear was realistic, although perhaps not to
5 the extent expressed by the Siptars I spoke to. And then I further
6 concluded that the refugees - and I found this interesting - had
7 sufficient amounts of food with them, especially flour and oil. The corps
8 commander wanted to know, because I was duty-bound to check whether the
9 refugees had enough food, and I was supposed to list their needs.
10 However, as there was a large number of these refugees and they were
11 leaving the territory of our country, I only established and reported that
12 they had sufficient amounts of food with them and that only on some
13 occasions did we provide medical assistance.
14 Q. Yes, that's what I'm interested in now. Who provided medical
16 A. We provided medical assistance in Prizren because in Prizren,
17 that's where my field hospital was located, and these were usually elderly
18 people. Later on, in several instances when columns were bombed and some
19 parts of town were bombed, in my field hospital or war hospital in Prizren
20 which had four surgical teams and four operating theatres, we took care of
21 most of the persons who were wounded when the columns were bombed. One
22 column was bombed on the Djakovica-Prizren road and another on the
23 Prizren-Suva Reka road, near the village of Korisa. And also when
24 different parts of the town were bombed.
25 Q. Thank you.
1 MR. CEPIC: Could we show page 2 in B/C/S and probably to scroll
2 down in English. Could we a little bit scroll up in B/C/S, please.
3 Second page, please.
4 Q. [Interpretation] General, we see here that there were attempts to
5 confiscate things from refugees, primarily money and vehicles. What did
6 you do when you received such information?
7 A. I have to say that the road along which the refugees were moving
8 passed through the combat disposition of my unit so that a certain number
9 of soldiers tried to take money from those persons. And some also tried
10 to take vehicles from them. They were all arrested. Criminal reports
11 were filed and they were handed over to the security organs and then to
12 the military court, the war court.
13 Q. Thank you. In point 2, paragraphs 2 and 3, you say there was
14 least movement in Gora and that 30 per cent of the population which was
15 Serbian left the territory. Where did you get this information from,
17 A. I contacted the local self government bodies, and I knew that
18 through my officers. All my officers had moved their families away, some
19 to Macedonia, some to Bosnia-Herzegovina, and most to Serbia.
20 Q. Thank you, General. Did the units of your brigade apply the
21 international laws of war and the Rules of Combat?
22 A. Yes. That was an imperative which was always pointed out whenever
23 a task was issued to the commanders. According to the rules, in every
24 order before executing combat activities, the commanders had to inform
25 their subordinate units that the application of international humanitarian
1 war and laws of war was obligatory, it was mandatory, and could not be
2 departed from.
3 Q. Thank you, General.
4 MR. CEPIC: Could we have 5D888, please.
5 Q. General, is this your document?
6 A. Yes, that's my document dated the 17th of April.
7 Q. And pursuant to what did you issue this document?
8 A. Pursuant to an order coming from the Pristina Corps command dated
9 the 16th of April, with a view to reducing casualties caused among the
10 civilian population by aggressor fire.
11 Q. General, you mentioned that refugees, or rather, the road leading
12 to the border passed through the combat disposition of your unit. We have
13 had Prosecution witnesses testifying here who said that on that road the
14 troops stood on both sides of the road. Can you explain what this was
16 A. Correct. My soldiers, especially from the engineering battalion,
17 stood on either side of the road, from the state border all the way to the
18 village of Zur and in some places also in-depth. According to the plan
19 for the use of my unit, it was envisaged that the entire territory from
20 the very border itself and then along the depth should be laid with
21 anti-armour and anti-infantry land-mines. The road itself, the
22 Prizren-Vrbnica road, that is, had been prepared already in peacetime for
23 demolition at the village of Zur. That was one point and the second was
24 the bridge leading from the village of Zur towards Vrbnica and mine pits
25 with 5 tonnes of explosives each were prepared there before the war,
1 before the columns of refugees turned up. All that had already been
2 completed before the refugees turned up.
3 To avoid losses among the civilians, the soldiers had to stand
4 along the sides of the road to prevent people from going off the asphalt
5 road. It would have been enough for them to take one or two steps off the
6 road and they might step on a land-mine. In a later period, we found tape
7 which we stretched along either side of the road, but we still had to have
8 men standing there, although a smaller number of men, to warn the
9 civilians, to tell them that on that section of the road they must not
10 take a single step off the road because they would activate land-mines and
11 be killed.
12 Q. Were there any casualties due to that?
13 A. There were two cases. One happened -- well, I did say at the very
14 beginning that the road leading out of our country had been mined as well.
15 When the refugees showed up, I had to demine that road; however, I demined
16 only the right-hand lane of the asphalt road. On the left lane there were
17 warnings. On one occasion, one of the drivers, one of the Albanians who
18 was going to Albania, was not driving in a column, he went to the left
19 lane, and he came across land-mines that were activated. And in that car
20 there must have been several wounded and dead persons; however, since this
21 is on the very border with Albania they were immediately transferred to
22 Albanian territory. So I do not know about the destiny of these
23 passengers and I don't know how many casualties there were actually.
24 There was this other case when the police patrol was driving from
25 Zur to Vrbnica in a Lada vehicle. They wanted to make a U-turn and come
1 back to Prizren. Although they had been warned, they got off the asphalt
2 road to the macadam road, a small byroad, only 1 and a half metres later
3 they came across an anti-tank mine, their vehicle was destroyed, one
4 person got killed, and the other person was seriously wounded.
5 MR. CEPIC: Thank you. Could we have 5D891, please.
6 Q. [Interpretation] General, sir, is this your order and does it
7 corroborate precisely the words you said just now?
8 A. Yes, this is my order, and now I see that the incident with the
9 police occurred on the 17th of April; after that, this order was written,
10 prohibiting any movement off roads, Prizren-Vrbnica, and also along
11 Djakovica-Cafa Prusit because this other road had also been completely
12 mined. Again, this order requests that all unit members and the local
13 population and refugees be warned of possible consequences and be told
14 about this order, and that is why this order was submitted to the 2nd
15 Motorised Battalion of my brigade that was in Prizren and to the MUP of
16 Prizren and to the municipal assembly of Prizren.
17 Q. In the transcript it says that it was submitted to the 2nd
18 Battalion and to the municipality of Prizren and who else?
19 A. The MUP in Prizren, the SUP of Prizren, Ministry of the Interior.
20 Q. Thank you.
21 MR. CEPIC: Could we have Exhibit P1988, please.
22 Q. [Interpretation] General, sir, is this a document of yours?
23 A. Yes. This is a document that was written by my operations officer
24 and I signed it. He wrote it on my orders. This document is a response
25 to the order of the Pristina Corps, strictly confidential 455-117 on the
1 23rd of April, and I am answering the same day. The document has to do
2 with the following. I am informing the commander that all the military
3 territorial detachments that are resubordinated to the 549th Motorised
4 Brigade were relocated from populated areas and occupied sectors for
5 defence pursuant to combat orders.
6 Q. Why were they relocated from populated areas and when were they
7 relocated in your case?
8 A. I don't know what the necessity was regarding this order because
9 in my zone military territorial detachments were never in populated areas,
10 in built-up areas. As soon as they were resubordinated to me, they
11 immediately took up their own areas of defence of the state border. Only
12 the command of the military department was in Prizren. However, perhaps
13 in some other units, in-depth, there was a need to relocate them out of
14 populated areas. If you look at my war map that you used a few moments
15 ago, you will see that the deployment of these platoons in the -- on the
16 state border in the municipality of Gora, in the municipality of
17 Djakovica, and facing the Macedonian border, that is the 108th Detachment
18 from Prizren.
19 Q. Thank you, General.
20 MR. CEPIC: Could we have 5D897, please.
21 Q. [Interpretation] Could you please have a look at paragraph 2.
22 A. Yes. Should I read it out?
23 Q. We have it on our screens in front of us -- or actually, go ahead,
24 read it out, but fast, please.
25 A. "Receiving, dispersing, and providing security for the civilian
1 population, act in line with the previously issued orders of the brigade
2 command. Prevent any undisciplined behaviour on the part of commanding
3 officers in relation to the civilian population (such as banning return to
4 populated localities and so on)."
5 Q. General, we already heard testimony from a witness here that near
6 Korisa members of the military were returning people to their villages and
7 towns, K-79 was the Prosecution witness who said that. Could you tell us
8 whether there were other such examples and whether these units near Korisa
9 were from your unit?
10 A. Yes, the unit near Korisa could not have been from anybody else's
11 unit but mine. That is a military territorial attachment. There were
12 several cases. I personally returned civilians and talked to people who
13 led some smallish columns. I asked them why they were going and I asked
14 several times that they go back to their places of residence. However,
15 there was a problem here. Through my border crossing people were leaving
16 the entire territory of Kosovo and Metohija, because from my zone quite a
17 few civilians went to the town of Prizren -- and even people from
18 Kosovska Mitrovica and Pec were coming this way and from other towns and
19 villages. It was a problem to have them returned. At one moment I even
20 said that they could not cross the border, that the border was closed, and
21 I said that they had to return to their respective towns and villages.
22 Truth to tell, this column did go back, it was about 20 vehicles, and it
23 went about 20 kilometres back to the area of the village of Rogovo. There
24 is a greenhouse there where they sought shelter and stayed for a few days.
25 Q. Thank you.
1 A. But later, later, they did leave. They didn't return to
2 Mitrovica, they left, they crossed the border, too. As for one particular
3 column that I stopped, I convinced them to go back; however, they told me
4 then that they didn't have the fuel to do that, that they would go back if
5 I can provide fuel for them. I could not provide that because I had fuel
6 only for my own units, on a very restrictive basis. Then they said to me,
7 The border with Albania is only 14 kilometres away. We have enough fuel
8 to get to Albania, so let us go.
9 In my zone we returned the population to a few villages, and later
10 we went to these villages and guarded them because these villagers had
11 told us that when they come back they might have problems with terrorists.
12 Q. Thank you. General, we see paragraph 3 here, clearing up.
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Could you briefly tell me something about clearing up, clean-up.
15 It says here that it is a priority task.
16 A. Clean-up is a priority task and was in particular in my territory.
17 Q. Did you have special units -- special teams for that?
18 A. Yes, I had several teams. Clean-up means eliminating all danger
19 in the territory threatening the civilian population and the military. In
20 my territory there were a great many such threats. First of all, in some
21 villages from which the civilian population had left, livestock stayed on
22 and they wandered off into the fields. I don't know how well aware people
23 are aware of this, but if cattle eat clover they die, so there was a lot
24 of dead cattle strewn all over my territory. Also, there were many stray
25 dogs attacking cattle.
1 My territory was bombed with cluster bombs every day. These
2 cluster bombs were all over the territory, so I had to have one team that
3 went and buried the cattle. Another team went out to destroy cluster
4 bombs. Yet another team went out to measure radioactivity where NATO had
5 bombed. Yet another team went to have a look at parts of cluster bombs
6 and other rocket projectiles with which my territory had been targeted,
7 and that was all over the territory. They were trying to put them away so
8 that the civilian population wouldn't have any contact with that.
9 Q. Thank you, General.
10 MR. CEPIC: Could we see Exhibit Number 5D1242, please. This is
11 the video clip.
12 [Videotape played]
13 MR. CEPIC: We have some technical problems. I hope that my
14 assistant will solve that in a very short time.
15 [Videotape played]
16 MR. CEPIC: It is faster than expected.
17 [Videotape played]
18 MR. CEPIC: I hope that we will solve this problem.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: Is this about an incident on which there is no
21 MR. CEPIC: I hope that we haven't got any dispute, but I think
22 that --
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Is this damage --
24 MR. CEPIC: [Indiscernible]
25 JUDGE BONOMY: -- is this damage caused by a NATO attack that
1 we're looking at?
2 MR. CEPIC: Exactly, Your Honour.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Is there any dispute about this?
4 MR. HANNIS: Well, Your Honour, I don't know which one this is
5 supposed to be. I need some foundation.
6 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour. We still have technical
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, let's ask some questions then and see if the
9 witness can help us. The film is meaningless until we get some context.
10 [Defence counsel confer]
11 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. General, this playback is rather fast. Do you recognise any of
13 these scenes?
14 A. The first one does not belong to the rest. Where you see the road
15 and the tractors that were hit, I recognise that. This is one NATO
16 air-strike against the column of refugees on the 14th of April on the
17 Prizren-Djakovica road that goes on to Meja and further on. I was there
18 myself perhaps an hour or 90 minutes after the bomb hit them. The bombing
19 took place in seven different locations along a stretch of 14 kilometres
20 perhaps. This one that you see is the closest to Prizren. It's about 1
21 kilometre to the south-east from Pirane village, where one part of
22 these -- this column, this convoy of refugees was hit. Another part of
23 the convoy was hit right next to Pirane. One part of the convoy was hit
24 next to Zrze; another part of the convoy was hit next to the bridge across
25 the Drin river. Another part of the convoy was hit close to Bistrazin,
1 close to the old bridge, and also close to Djakovica they were hit once.
2 And they were hit close to Meja again. Out of those seven locations, I
3 visited five going from Prizren to Djakovica.
4 A large number of people were killed but NATO did not recognise it
5 the first day. They admitted to it only two or three days later. I
6 believe in Djakovica or the area that belongs to Djakovica, around 40
7 people were killed, a larger number was wounded. And in the section of
8 the road close to Prizren, around 30 people were killed and a large number
9 was wounded. In the war hospital in Djakovica, and especially in the war
10 hospital in Prizren, we attended to those refugees who could still be
11 helped. Their injuries were horrific. Limbs had to be amputated very
12 frequently and there were horrible burns on their bodies. It was the 14th
13 of April, 1999.
14 MR. CEPIC: Your Honour, with your leave --
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Cepic, is there a report on this, a document
16 that reports the facts?
17 MR. CEPIC: Yes, Your Honour, 5D922.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: Is that not the best way --
19 MR. CEPIC: This is a combat report of --
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Is that not the best way to deal with it? We know
21 this exists --
22 MR. CEPIC: Thank you --
23 JUDGE BONOMY: -- we can look at it another --
24 MR. CEPIC: I'm sorry --
25 JUDGE BONOMY: Let's just get on with the matters. There is no
1 dispute about this. The witness acknowledges NATO admitted that this was
2 their responsibility, so let's move on. We're not here to provide
3 propaganda for countries in the Balkans. Let's get to the facts that
4 really matter.
5 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour. I apologise for interrupting.
6 Thank you one more time.
7 Only problem, I'm afraid that we have partial translation but we
8 will see. Could we have 5D922, please.
9 Q. [Interpretation] General, is this a combat report of yours?
10 A. Yes, this is my combat report, but it relates to another
11 air-strike, a different air-strike.
12 Q. Can you explain about that different air-strike?
13 A. I know I reported the first, the second, and the third. This is
14 the 21st of April, it says that at 3.00 --
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Let's deal with this in order if you have to go
16 through these documents with a witness in live time in court where there's
17 no dispute, but if that's the way you want to use your time, then let's do
18 it but let's do it in order. Let's have the report, first of all, for the
19 one we've seen on the screen which was on the 14th of April.
20 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: And if you don't want to use it, just give us the
22 reference for it and we'll attend to it, but it's not 5D922.
23 MR. CEPIC: Your Honour, with your leave ...
24 [Defence counsel confer]
25 MR. CEPIC: Unfortunately, Your Honour, I cannot find right now,
1 this document --
2 JUDGE BONOMY: But you can give us the number of it later and now
3 go to 5D922, which is on the screen, if that's the one --
4 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: -- if that's the one you intend to deal with next.
6 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. General, explain briefly this document before you.
8 A. That's another one of my combat reports, but for the 21st April.
9 It's just a few days after this first bombing. This one was the bombing
10 of refugee settlement also in Bistrazin village a couple of kilometres
11 from Djakovica, in the direction of Prizren. Refugees from the Republic
12 of Serbian Krajina were put up there. The bombing took place at 3.00,
13 four people were killed, and the 22 wounded were taken to the health
14 centre in Djakovica.
15 MR. CEPIC: Could we have 5D914, please.
16 Q. [Interpretation] General, we see that this one is a combat report
17 from your brigade. What is written in the first paragraph?
18 A. That's a combat report from my brigade for the 14th of May. In
19 the first paragraph it says that during the night a refugee convoy was
20 bombed in Korisa village. NATO aviation bombed this convoy that was
21 travelling on convoys on way -- on the way home with more than 14
22 projectiles. It says that around a hundred, that is, a hundred, refugees
23 were killed and many were wounded seriously or less seriously. Many of
24 them are women and children, the wounded were taken to the health centre
25 in Prizren.
1 Q. What is the date?
2 A. 14th of May. It happened between midnight -- I believe the first
3 bombs hit 20 minutes after midnight.
4 Q. And who did the bombing?
5 A. NATO.
6 Q. Thank you, General.
7 MR. CEPIC: Could we have 5D910, please.
8 Q. [Interpretation] Look at paragraph 3: "On the 28th of April ..."
9 A. Shall I read it?
10 Q. Just tell us briefly what it is on the screen.
11 A. "On the 28th of April, 1999, around 2300 hours, a populated area
12 between Ortokol and the suburb of Culjan in Prizren came under attack.
13 The consequences were as follows: Four civilians were killed and seven
14 were wounded. The civilians were Roma."
15 Q. The date again?
16 A. The report is dated 29th April and the incident happened on the
17 28th at 2300 hours.
18 Q. How did you find out about this incident?
19 A. That is in Prizren itself, in the vicinity. Another part of my
20 barracks is located, namely, the infirmary.
21 Q. How did you find out about the accident with the Korisa convoy on
22 the 14th of May?
23 A. I did not find about that immediately, although I could hear the
24 explosions myself after midnight. But I heard the sound coming from the
25 direction of Suva Reka where there were no units of mine. I learned about
1 that only in the morning, the next morning, because the first wounded --
2 since the check-point of the MUP is perhaps 2 or 3 kilometres away from
3 that location, the first wounded were brought to my hospital after 3.00
4 a.m., and I was notified around 4.00 a.m. because all the medical units -
5 and I had four surgical teams - were engaged. We had to organize the
6 giving of blood and to use the reserves of blood for transfusions to these
7 refugees, the reserves that we were saving for our soldiers. I went to
8 the site itself, but only later that day when the dead and wounded had
9 been removed. I just inspected the site of the bombing.
10 Q. General, did members of your unit give blood for the victims?
11 A. In the previous incident and on a number of times during the war,
12 our troops gave blood, donated blood, but first we used the reserves of
13 blood we had in our war hospital. So we first intervened with blood
14 supplies that we had.
15 Q. Thank you.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Going back for a moment to the document on the
17 screen, 5D910, the attack was against a feature, is it the Cvilen
18 feature. What is that, Mr. Delic?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Are you asking about the incident
20 I've just spoken about with the settlement --
21 JUDGE BONOMY: The one on the 28th of April, the document relating
22 to it is on the screen, paragraph 3 you were directed to and you'll see a
23 reference to the feature that was being attacked by NATO; what is that?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Oh, I see. First there is an
25 account of this attack against the convoy of civilians and then other
1 features are enumerated that were bombed. Cvilen feature is actually a
2 hill holding a repeater for television broadcasts and for post
3 communications. When this repeater was destroyed, all the communications
4 between Kosovo and Metohija and the outside world were interrupted.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: That's the paragraph --
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The civilian communications.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: That's the paragraph that's been translated. Was
8 it in that attack that the civilians were killed and wounded?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That Cvilen feature, that is, the
10 repeater station and TV repeaters are located on a hill overlooking
11 Prizren. They were hit 30 times. The first time it was targeted there
12 were people inside, but as far as I know nobody was killed. After that,
13 this facility was abandoned, but it continued to be targeted until its
14 aerial was destroyed. I believe it was completely finally destroyed in
16 JUDGE BONOMY: And how far is it from the populated area which is
17 referred to later in the paragraph where the civilians were killed?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The populated area is several
19 kilometres away, perhaps as the crow flies 10 kilometres or 15 kilometres
20 by road. But that Cvilen hill is visible from Prizren, it is a dominant
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
23 Mr. Cepic.
24 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
25 Q. [Interpretation] Just let us clear up one thing. This donation of
1 blood --
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Just a moment, Mr. Cepic.
3 [Trial Chamber confers]
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Cepic, the witness has told us that first there
5 is a reference to an attack against a convoy of civilians in this
6 document, that must be a part that's not translated, is it?
7 MR. CEPIC: I don't think so. We firstly spoke about incident in
8 Korisa, and this is another document. This document is related just for
9 this --
10 JUDGE BONOMY: No, but in the first two paragraphs of this
11 document is there any reference to an attack on civilians?
12 MR. CEPIC: No, Your Honour, just in the third paragraph.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In the third one.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: Please proceed, Mr. Cepic. Thank you.
15 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
16 Q. [Interpretation] Let's just clarify, General, what we've just been
17 saying about blood donations by members of your unit. What event was that
18 connected to?
19 A. That had to do with the event when the convoy was bombed near
20 Korisa. That was when the men gave blood, but one should know that today
21 blood is not donated right away. It has to be processed first. We had
22 several hundred men who were ready to donate blood at any moment always.
23 We had blood in reserve, stocks of blood, which had already been prepared
24 for operations, and we used those stocks, those reserves whenever we
25 assisted civilians. And then people turned up on their own initiative
1 offering to donate blood when they heard about this huge misfortune.
2 Q. What men were you referring to? Were they your soldiers? Were
3 they civilians?
4 A. Primarily I'm referring to my soldiers, although I know that there
5 were also civilians, citizens, who also turned up at the hospital to
7 Q. Thank you, General. We have seen three incidents so far in which
8 civilians were killed. Let's now deal with a fourth one.
9 MR. CEPIC: Could we have 5D1374, please. This is a short
11 [Videotape played]
12 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. General, what is this video about, the one we've just seen?
14 A. This is the bombing of Prizren. I remember, it's Podrimska
15 Street, and this bombing was by day, only one or two days after this
16 bombing in an area inhabited by Albanians and Roma in that part of the
18 Q. General, we saw some young people in green camouflage uniforms in
19 the video. Who were these people?
20 A. Well, you may have observed that some of them had the red cross
21 sign on their left arm. Those were men from my medical corps. One of
22 them was a squad leader at ...
23 [Power failure]
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, it's a convenient time to have a break.
25 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Delic, would you leave the courtroom, please,
2 and God willing, we'll continue at 20 minutes past 11.00.
3 [The witness stands down]
4 ---Recess taken at 10.47 a.m.
5 --- On resuming at 11.20 a.m.
6 [The witness takes the stand]
7 JUDGE BONOMY: The force is toying with us, Mr. Cepic, but we
8 shall proceed --
9 MR. CEPIC: Again the same problem, Your Honour.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, you've got a microphone and you've got a
11 screen, so continue until there's a complete breakdown. There you go.
12 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Lights, camera, action.
14 MR. CEPIC: My learned friend, Mr. Sepenuk, already told me that
15 I'm almost like some editor, one famous Steven Spielberg, and I really
16 appreciate that. Thank you and thank you to Mr. Sepenuk.
17 Q. [Interpretation] General, we saw that video clip and we saw
18 members of your units assisting civilian victims.
19 MR. CEPIC: Could we have 5D911, please.
20 Q. [Interpretation] General, is this your document?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Will you look at point 4, please.
23 A. This is a combat report, a daily combat report, from my brigade
24 for the 1st of May, and item 4 here -- yes. It's in item 4 that there is
25 mention of what we have just seen, that the enemy aviation at 1200 hours
1 hit three civilian buildings immediately next to the barracks with two
2 projectiles. "According to current reports, two people were killed and
3 two were seriously wounded." And then it goes on to say that: "The
4 aviation also launched an attack on Jablanica village and the general area
5 of Suva Reka. There are casualties but we do not have exact information
6 at this time."
7 Q. General, does this combat report refer to the incident we saw on
8 that video before the break?
9 A. Yes, that is a report that was subsequently sent to the corps
11 Q. Thank you. We saw your soldiers, we listed four incidents, you
12 explained that the soldiers were assisting civilians. Will you tell me,
13 please, whether you had any special units in your brigade to look after
15 A. Well, there's an order which we've already seen here to the effect
16 that every unit had to designate a certain group to provide assistance.
17 But in situations such as this one, evidently, my medical company provided
18 assistance because I recognised one of the company -- the company leader,
19 but you could also see the civilian protection as well as ordinary
20 citizens. And the firefighters also, everybody participated who was in
21 the town of Prizren, all the institutions and ordinary citizens as well.
22 Q. Thank you. Can you please describe something we saw on the clip.
23 What uniforms do members of the civilian protection wear?
24 A. Well, those blue uniforms you saw.
25 Q. Do they have fluorescent armbands?
1 A. Yes, those are members of the civilian protection. That's how
2 they were distinguished from others.
3 Q. Thank you, General. Could you explain the following three
4 concepts: Zone of responsibility, area for defence, position for defence.
5 A. The zone of responsibility or area of responsibility is the
6 broadest of these terms. It designates a piece of territory and
7 demarcation line between the different units in the Pristina Corps, and
8 there is a war zone and a peacetime zone. The peacetime zone is
9 considerably broader, and in the case of my unit it was over 4.000 square
10 kilometres in size. The war zone is narrower, it's smaller, and it was a
11 little less than 3.000 square kilometres.
12 I had a very long length of border to secure. The defence area is
13 a narrower term; it is a piece of territory taken by army units, fortified
14 by the engineers, from which they defend themselves. Usually there is the
15 basic area of defence, the reserve area of defence in depth, and then
16 there is also the term the next area of defence. The positions are given
17 to lower-level units at platoon level, and that is a small area taken up
18 by the platoon where it builds its trenches and shelters. It's about 300
19 to 400 metres long if we're dealing with a platoon, and as each position
20 has a reserve position in depth, it's also 300 to 400 metres in depth.
21 When we are dealing with a company, its area of defence is a kilometre to
22 a kilometre and a half along the front line, and the same amount of
23 kilometres in depth. Battalions have 3 to 5 kilometres by some 3
24 kilometres. Between these units, there are areas in between.
25 Q. You indicated on the map what your area of responsibility was.
1 You explained the defence positions. I'm interested -- we've also heard
2 about the length of that. Was there a lot of space in between the units?
3 A. Well, this space in between the units is also envisaged in the
4 rules. But especially in my situation when I was defending an area five
5 times larger than envisaged by the rules, then the space in between also
6 had to be much bigger. The rules provide that this in-between area should
7 be protected, it should be observed, patrols should be sent in there, and
8 sometimes mine are laid in these in-between areas, minefields are laid,
9 regardless of whether they are anti-personnel or anti-tank mines.
10 Q. Thank you.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: My understanding of that evidence is that we have a
12 definition for an area of responsibility and a definition for an area of
13 defence, and you asked about a third category which seemed to be position
14 for defence. Is that something else?
15 MR. CEPIC: Exactly, Your Honour.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: And is there a definition of that there?
17 MR. CEPIC: Yes, Your Honour. Witness answered to us and I can
18 ask him again just to clarify this.
19 JUDGE BONOMY: No, I see a zone of responsibility and then we had
20 defence area is a narrower term, it's a basic area of defence, reserve
21 area of defence in depth, and then there's also the term the next area of
22 defence. The positions are given to lower-level units. Is that something
23 different at that point or are we still dealing with, essentially, the
24 area of defence? Can you clarify that? Thank you.
25 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
1 Q. [Interpretation] General, we have an explanation now of the zone
2 or area of responsibility. Could you please now explain the difference
3 between the area of defence and the position for defence.
4 A. Well, areas of defence are assigned to larger units, for example,
5 platoons, companies, and battalions. As I said, a platoon has its area of
6 defence and sometimes it's called resistance points, and it's 300 to 400
7 metres by 300 to 400 metres in area, and a company and battalion have
8 larger areas.
9 Q. What is the difference between area of defence and position for
11 A. Well, one can say that the position for defence is a line taken up
12 by the basic unit. That is the place where shelters are erected, where
13 the smallest units, squads, are located. There is the basic position and
14 reserve position. The basic position is where there is fighting and the
15 reserve position can be a certain distance behind that, about a hundred
16 metres, 150 metres behind that.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
18 MR. CEPIC: Your Honour, I think it would be useful if the witness
19 draw us on the map just for clarification with your leave.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: It wouldn't assist me, but it's a matter for you.
21 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
22 Q. [Interpretation] Thank you. We've seen members of the police on
23 the footage, we've seen members of the civilian protection. You've also
24 mentioned the commander of the civil defence in Prizren, you did that in
25 the previous part of your testimony. I would like to know whether you or
1 any of your subordinates in the brigade had effective control. Did anyone
2 have effective control over any of these units?
3 A. Well, that's absolutely clear. All my officers had effective
4 control over our own units, as did I. We had no control over what --
5 whatsoever over MUP units or units of civilian protection or defence; they
6 all had their own chains of command.
7 Q. General, K-54 was a Prosecution witness who testified before this
8 Trial Chamber, K-89 as well, and K-89 [In English] K-82 and K-89, please.
9 [Interpretation] And they said that in 1998, in basic training centres,
10 they had training that was abbreviated. (redacted)
15 A. These are soldiers. Quite simply, they do not know what the
16 teaching plan and programme is. It is correct that they spent the first
17 stage of training in these training centres, which for them, like for all
18 others, is two months and 20 days. The second stage of this basic
19 training continues in the units. When a driver comes to my unit, he has
20 to be trained additionally. He cannot drive straight away. We have to
21 see what kind of vehicles he drove in the centre and what kind of vehicles
22 he's going to drive in the unit. And then we have to see what the
23 specific vehicles assigned to him are going to be, and then he is tested
24 on those vehicles. And that practically goes on until the end of his
25 term, because after the first stage comes the stage of the training of
1 units, and that differs depending on the military evidentiary specialty of
2 the soldier concerned. It varies in arms and services. As far as I can
3 see, these two were in services and their training lasts that long
5 [Defence counsel confer]
6 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, my colleagues tell me
7 that there's a mistake in the transcript, page 40, lines 23 and 24, it
8 says K-54 trained as a soldier -- [In English] K-89 -- 82, actually,
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Which page --
12 MR. CEPIC: I have on my screen 42, page, and lines 20.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: The spelling of the place?
14 MR. CEPIC: It was not just the place. (redacted)
15 (redacted) their speciality, and with your leave I can
16 repeat it.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah, but that's clear. K-54 trained as a soldier,
21 (redacted) Now,
22 what's -- if you want to change that, you better ask Mr. Delic to explain
23 it or, alternatively, you tell me what is wrong with that record of your
25 [Defence counsel confer]
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can be of assistance. The
2 technical service trains in Senta, in Kraljevo. If training was in
3 Kraljevo, then that is where drivers are trained; and this other soldier,
4 if he came from Valjevo, Pirot, Podgorica, that is where infantrymen were
6 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. Thank you, General.
8 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour, for clarification.
9 Q. [Interpretation] General, these witnesses, especially K-89 and
10 K-54, say that they were not aware of provisions of international
11 humanitarian law and rules pertaining to armed conflict. Is that correct?
12 A. There are compulsory subjects in basic training. Now I cannot
13 talk about what was done in their centres because I was not there
14 specifically when they were trained. However, there is a compulsory
15 subject, familiarization with these provisions, and after all there is a
16 compulsory teaching of the Rules of Service. And the Rules of Service
17 actually refer to that as well.
18 Q. Did every soldier have instructions on the use of rules?
19 A. Upon arriving in the territory of Kosovo and Metohija, because in
20 1998 only the territory of Kosovo and Metohija had been engulfed by
21 terrorism, all soldiers received this instruction and all of them were
22 duty-bound to have in the pockets of their shirts a copy of these
23 instructions. It is brief. It explained the procedure of soldiers in
24 different situations, and in the briefest possible terms the provisions of
25 international humanitarian law on the treatment of civilians were
1 expressed in detail there. The soldiers were issued with that and then
2 they had to return these copies when leaving their units.
3 Q. General, Witness K-54 says that he was a soldier in your logistics
4 battalion and that he had the duty of driver. And that in 1998 in the
5 village of Damjane, he heard from a soldier that you had ordered his
6 lieutenant-colonel to have the village cleansed of civilians with the
7 following words: Get rid of all the civilians from this village.
8 Is that assertion of his correct?
9 A. I don't know whether such a statement merits any kind of comment
10 whatsoever, because this is not military vocabulary, this is not an order
11 that can be given by a professional officer. In the village of Damjane in
12 1998, there was a military unit but only in part of the village of
13 Damjane. That part of the village of Damjane is called Mahadri Mahala.
14 The village of Damjane is an enormous village in terms of the territory it
15 covers, and there are several Mahalas that the army absolutely never
16 entered in 1998, all the way up until the month of September or October.
17 That was an artillery unit that, in front of Mahadri Mahala, had its
18 artillery positions. That is about a kilometre and a half or two away
19 from Rogovo in the direction of the west.
20 Q. Thank you. Did you ever issue, perhaps in a different situation,
21 that kind of order to your subordinate officers?
22 A. Not only I personally. It is not only that I never issued such an
23 order, but I'm certain that not a single one of my officers would have
24 dared issue that kind of order because that would have meant a violation
25 of all military rules, regulations, Rules of Service, laws. And since
1 we're talking about 1998, it would be a violation of these humanitarian
2 principles of international law.
3 Q. Thank you. K-54 says in that period that civilian trucks were
4 requisitioned and that a civilian truck was taken and things from richer
5 houses as well and that an officer took all of that to Serbia. I'm
6 interested in the following. On that occasion, in that area, were motor
7 vehicles requisitioned, trucks too, and were such acts committed as
8 described by this witness?
9 A. Please, this is 1998. Absolutely not a single vehicle, because
10 there was no need for that, had been mobilised for the Army of Yugoslavia.
11 We had our own vehicles. As for this kind of a case occurring in my unit
12 without me knowing it, in view of the functioning of the chain of command
13 and in view of the functioning of the security line, that is absolutely
14 impossible. That witness is not telling the truth in that specific case.
15 Q. Had something like that had happened, what would you have done?
16 A. Well, that officer would have been arrested at the same instant
17 and he would have been sent to military court with criminal charges
18 brought against him. I never needed officers like that. I did have one
19 such incident there committed by a sergeant, but he was arrested and he
20 was sent further on to a regular military court with criminal charges
21 brought against him in Nis. This is Sergeant Petrovic.
22 Q. Thank you, General. The same witness, K-54, asserts that in the
23 summer of 1998, in the month of August, at a place that's about 15
24 kilometres away from Djakovica, he pointed out that you were next to a
25 tank and that he was about 10 metres away from you and that he could hear
1 you order firing at a civilian house. Is his assertion correct?
8 JUDGE BONOMY: We will redact from page 47 -- in fact -- yes, 47,
9 line 18, until now, and leave it to you to try to avoid any further
10 indication of the identity of the witness.
11 Please continue, Mr. Cepic.
12 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
13 Q. [Interpretation] General, I'm now going to ask you about a place
14 called Ljubizda Has and February 1999. We have heard a claim that the
15 bodies of six Albanians had been brought there from the direction of a
16 mountain where ambushes were laid. Do you know anything about that?
17 Could you explain briefly?
18 A. I know very well about that because I was there, but that is not
19 true. It was not six bodies, it was three bodies that were brought, the
20 bodies of terrorists who were killed while in ambush by our forces that
22 Q. Were any weaponry and equipment seized?
23 A. A large amount of equipment was seized. It was our assessment
24 that based on that amount of equipment that group could have counted 50
25 members and they ran into a seven-man ambush on our side.
1 Q. Where was the ambush?
2 A. On Mount Pastrik. A kilometre and a half to 2 kilometres away
3 overlooking Ljubizda village, Ljubizda Has village in the mountains. In
4 my reports you can probably find the exact location, but I know where it
6 Q. 2 kilometres away from what?
7 A. From Ljubizda Has village, but towards the Albanian border and in
8 the mountains.
9 Q. Is that in the border belt?
10 A. Yes, it's all in the border belt.
11 MR. CEPIC: Could we have Exhibit Number 3D1051, please. Count
12 2.4, please. In English that is on second page. Thank you.
13 Q. [Interpretation] General, we have before us a document from the
14 3rd Army command, security section. In paragraph 2.4, we see that in
15 Jeskovo village a DTG, sabotage terrorist group, was stationed numbering
16 25 persons, Jeskovo village. Did you get this information?
17 A. Yes, we had this information and we had our own intelligence. It
18 was in the beginning of March that we knew that in the vicinity of Prizren
19 in Kabas and in Jeskovo new groups of terrorists had arrived for the
20 purpose of mobilising new forces and with the objective of attacking
21 Prizren-Zur Dragas road and on the other side, Prizren-Suva Reka road in
22 the area of Korisa village.
23 Q. Could you look at paragraph 2.5. In B/C/S it's page 2.
24 MR. CEPIC: In B/C/S, this is on second page, please. Could we
25 have that page, please.
1 Q. [Interpretation] In this paragraph, there is a reference to Kabas
2 village. Is that the one you mentioned?
3 A. Yes. In the same report I notified the corps commander.
4 Q. What steps did you take next?
5 A. I notified the corps commander that there was a danger that in
6 addition to large terrorist forces located in Retimlje village, Gorane
7 village, Ram Dubrava, Studencane villages, that these forces after
8 carrying out a mobilisation could practically encircle Prizren and cut off
9 my communications, my roads that lead from Prizren to the road so that I
10 wouldn't be able to supply my units any longer. And on the other side
11 they could cut off the roads that go from Metohija towards Suva Reka and
12 Dulje leading to Kosovo Polje, towards Pristina.
13 MR. CEPIC: Could we have on our screens Exhibit Number P2067.
14 Q. [Interpretation] General, is this your order, the one you
16 A. Yes. After those telegrams sent to the corps command containing
17 proposals and after their approval, this is the order I issued to engage
18 units, to destroy Siptar terrorist forces in the broader area of Jeskovo
19 village, dated 9 March.
20 Q. In this operation did you have any coordinated action with MUP
22 A. In this operation we had the coordinated support of the local MUP
23 from Prizren and the forces of the 37th Detachment of PJP, in fact, the
24 5th Company of PJP from Prizren and the 37th Detachment of PJP.
25 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Give me a moment, please, Mr. Cepic.
2 Sorry, Mr. Cepic, that had to be dealt with just now. Please
4 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
5 Q. [Interpretation] General, the forces of the police that you
6 enumerated, did you have any effective control over them?
7 A. No. I could not have any control over police forces because they
8 had their own commander, with whom I had agreed coordination, but
9 throughout the time he commanded his own units just like I commanded the
10 parts of my brigade that were involved. We were located in the same
11 place, and in my view that was a desirable practice that I always followed
12 whenever we had coordinated action with the MUP because that's the easier
13 way to organize coordination so that I can assist MUP forces when they
14 need me and they can assist me when I need it.
15 MR. CEPIC: Could we have second page and count 5, 5.6 and 5.7.
16 Q. [Interpretation] What we see here is an enumeration of those
17 forces, the 37th PJP Detachment and the 5th Company of PJP Prizren in --
18 under the heading: "Tasks to units." Why did you refer to these two
19 units specifically?
20 A. You see, in this specific assignment, my forces do not go behind
21 MUP forces supporting them. Instead, since there were not enough forces
22 they take up positions on the blockade line together, next to MUP forces,
23 so that each of my commanders who had received their respective
24 assignments, especially those who were neighbours to the MUP, had to know
25 exactly what the MUP's tasks were. You don't have my combat assets
1 following MUP forces and supporting them. They were in the same location,
2 and myself and the commander of the 37th Detachment were in one place.
3 And whenever some sort of support was needed, I dealt with it on his
5 My units established - let me say - control or visual control and
6 coordinated action with the MUP directly on the lines, and they moved
7 practically in one line of blockade, shoulder to shoulder. And since the
8 map, the decision map, usually doesn't reach my commanders, they only get
9 the order, each one of them has to know not only their own task but the
10 task of their left neighbour and their right neighbour, in order to avoid
11 any possibility of friendly fire, to avoid the possibility that somebody
12 intrude into another person's axis, suffering losses. We had to regulate
13 and define very precisely the task for each of my units, and the tasks of
14 the MUP units were agreed during the coordination efforts. So the MUP
15 units knew exactly how my units were moving and when and where they were
16 allowed to open fire or not.
17 Q. Were there any civilians in that village?
18 A. No, in Jeskovo there were no civilians, not a single one of them;
19 there were only terrorists inside.
20 MR. CEPIC: Your Honour, we already have in e-court system
21 admitted Exhibit 5D112, this is the report from OSCE mission, paragraph 4,
22 and in that paragraph there is a sentence: When the mission underlined
23 that that village was abandoned. If it's necessary, we can show that on
24 the screen.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: That's not necessary.
1 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
2 Q. [Interpretation] Tell me, General, was that terrorist practice of
3 two villages, one housing terrorists, another civilians, used in this
5 A. We could say so because in front of that village there are Bilusa
6 village, Hoca Zagradska village, on the same line exactly, and Leskovec
7 village. In those villages, the complete population was there, whereas in
8 Jeskovo there was not a single resident. And as soon as the army
9 appeared, it had to go through Hoca Zagradska village. And even before
10 the army arrived, while we were still on the asphalt road, that village
11 organized itself and the inhabitants moved towards Prizren; however, they
12 were stopped while they were still close to the village. They were
13 stopped by the MUP, and they were told that there was absolutely no need
14 for them to leave their village. They stayed for a while then, until the
15 units passed through towards the blockade line, and later the request was
16 made for all of them to return to their homes and they did because neither
17 they nor their village were affected by the action.
18 MR. CEPIC: Could we have on our screens Exhibit Number P1998.
19 Q. [Interpretation] General, is this your document?
20 A. Yes, yes, this is my document which I sent to the command of the
21 Pristina Corps on the very next day after the activities were carried out.
22 It's an analysis of the activities of my forces when routing the Siptar
23 terrorist forces in the village of Jeskovo, and of course I delivered it
24 according to the order of the command of the Pristina Corps.
25 Q. We have heard here in this courtroom that you ordered, in the
1 course of that action, that anyone found there should be killed. Is that
3 A. Let me say right away that that is not correct. It doesn't make
4 sense. I cannot imagine a single professional officer anywhere in the
5 world, not just our army, who could issue such an order.
6 Q. Would you tell me at that point in time, when this action was
7 being carried out, where was the rear battalion?
8 A. The rear battalion was not a combat unit. It had its task only in
9 blocking an axis along which we did not expect any fighting or any
10 pull-out by the terrorist forces, and that was the asphalt road going from
11 the village of Zur toward the Dragas plateau and Dragas. In that area,
12 these units were located which were not combat units, part of the
13 logistics battalion and some other forces which were not intended for
14 combat action but --
15 Q. What is the distance? How far was this away?
16 A. Well, the asphalt road is about a kilometre or a kilometre and a
17 half away from the village of Jeskovo and from the village of Bilusa also
18 and about 2 kilometres from the village of Zagradska, that's just a rough
20 Q. Thank you, General.
21 MR. CEPIC: Could we have the bottom of the page, please. In
22 B/C/S -- could we have the bottom of the page in B/C/S and, thank you, and
23 in English it's probably on the second page.
24 Q. [Interpretation] 2, paragraph 3, you say: "The forces that were
25 engaged in the execution of the task had been carefully planned and the
1 coordination within the forces and cooperation with the MUP forces were
3 Can you please explain what this means.
4 A. Well, it means that the forces and means for this task had been
5 carefully planned, which is why it was executed successfully. And it's
6 quite normal that the army forces and the MUP forces should cooperate in
7 this task and engage in coordinated action because they were organs of the
8 same state. So it was to be expected that they would cooperate.
9 Q. Thank you.
10 MR. CEPIC: Could we have the second page in B/C/S and in English
11 is probably the bottom page -- page 3 in English probably.
12 Q. [Interpretation] General, could you please look at the middle of
13 the page, the fourth paragraph in Serbian, it says: Command of the
14 selected forces ... Would you read that?
15 A. Yes.
16 "Command of the selected forces was achieved through a joint
17 command of the MUP and VJ forces; it was safe and timely."
18 Q. Can you explain what it says here?
19 A. Well, as I've already said, almost in all the actions I had with
20 the MUP, the MUP command and I would meet at a point, a location. When
21 the conditions were unfavourable, as in this case, I was with the deputy
22 commander at one place and my deputy would be at another point with the
23 MUP commander. And that was a combined command post. We would be there
24 together, monitor the fighting together, agree on coordination and
25 cooperation on the spot, and then he would issue orders to his units and I
1 would issue orders to mine. Any requests that the MUP received from their
2 commanders they would pass on to their own -- up their own chain. He
3 would give me information on the spot, and then I would use my logistics
4 or my officers to assist. And likewise, if I needed assistance somewhere,
5 that was the simplest thing. My commanders would tell me and the
6 commander of the MUP would be standing next to me, and I would explain the
7 problem to him and tell him what kind of assistance I needed. And this
8 functioned quite well.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: The translation of that answer is very confusing.
10 MR. CEPIC: Yes, Your Honour --
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Whether that's the answer or the translation isn't
12 clear. I'll have the answer retranslated later from the B/C/S tape to
13 clarify the position, but, Mr. Cepic, you need to make it clear to us
14 where the two commanders were and where the deputies were.
15 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Honour.
16 Q. [Interpretation] General, you said in your previous reply that you
17 and a MUP representative would be on one location and your deputy and
18 another representative of the MUP would be in another location. Could you
19 give us a specific example of where this was and how this functioned.
20 A. Well, I would need to see a map. I was to the south-east of the
21 village of Jeskovo, about a kilometre away, on a hill overlooking the
22 village of Jeskovo, quite a lot higher than it, and the commander was with
24 MR. CEPIC: Your Honour, could we have the map --
25 JUDGE BONOMY: We don't need the map.
1 MR. CEPIC: Oh, okay.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Who was in what you described as the joint command
3 post? And I think you've now answered that. You say you were with the
4 commander of the MUP; is that correct?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I and the MUP commander and the
6 auxiliary organs, my communications man, my driver, the MUP commander's
7 driver, my security and his security, that would be between five and ten
9 JUDGE BONOMY: And where was your deputy and the deputy commander
10 of the MUP?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] As I said in principle -- well, in
12 this particular situation they did not have any roles to play. In certain
13 other situations when the territory was far larger, then on one axis I
14 would go there with the deputy MUP commander and the MUP commander with my
15 deputy would go to the other axis. But in this particular case it was
16 only the two of us and only the two of us were in command.
17 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
18 Q. [Interpretation] Who did you cooperate with most frequently from
19 the MUP? Can we clarify this issue, please.
20 A. On the territory of Prizren municipality there is a secretariat of
21 the interior in Prizren which had its OUPs in Orahovac, Suva Reka, and
22 Dragas, and I cooperated usually with the chief of the secretariat. In
23 1998 that was Colonel Zekavica. In 1999 that was Colonel Milos Vojinovic.
24 Q. Thank you.
25 A. They were my counterparts, more or less. When we were carrying
1 out coordination, the commander of the 37th Detachment, Colonel Mitrovic,
2 would be called to the secretariat in Prizren and in the secretariat we
3 would meet. On the maps we would specify how both sets of forces were to
5 Q. Thank you. General, the terrorists who were killed in Jeskovo,
6 what sort of uniforms did they have?
7 A. All the terrorists killed in Jeskovo wore black uniforms.
8 Q. Thank you.
9 MR. CEPIC: Your Honour, we already have in e-court system
10 admitted Exhibits 5D113 and 5D114, also reports from OSCE mission and it
11 is described in those reports about that event and about black uniforms.
12 Thank you.
13 Q. [Interpretation] General, was there confirmation from the KLA that
14 their members were killed there?
15 A. Later on, much later, after the war, reading a book written by the
16 commander of the 2nd Battalion of the 125th Brigade was called
17 Xhafer Berisha. I learned because he described these events also and I
18 found it interesting because it was in my zone and because he was
19 describing the same battles in which I participated, and it was then that
20 I learned the names of those nine members of the special unit from the
21 125th Brigade. And as he says, these were heroes killed in fighting with
22 the Serb forces at close range, 15 to 20 metres, and he lists their nine
24 Q. You don't have to tell me their names. I'm interested what KLA
25 brigade was in question.
1 A. It was the 125th KLA Brigade from the Pastrik zone and its
2 commander was Ekrem Rexha, also known as Drini; and the 125th Brigade
3 covered part of the territory of Prizren municipality, which is called
5 Q. Thank you. General, we'll now move on to another location, to
6 Trnje, late March. We have heard some testimony by members of the rear
8 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] So first -- [In English] P1981,
10 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
11 JUDGE BONOMY: This document is under seal, Mr. Cepic.
12 MR. CEPIC: Could we go to private session, Your Honour.
13 JUDGE BONOMY: You will be asking questions that mean that we need
14 to hear about the content, will you, because we can simply just not show
15 it on the screens outside.
16 MR. CEPIC: Yes, Your Honour.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, let's try that first of all, but if you need
18 to go into private session to ask a question then we'll do that.
19 Mr. Delic, if you can answer the questions without going into the
20 detail reflected in the document, that would help; otherwise, if you find
21 it difficult, let me know and we'll go into private session.
22 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, certainly I can. These
24 are documents which were used in 2005, and there was never a private
25 session. I can answer in every case without these documents.
1 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
2 Q. General, I'm only interested in one thing. We don't have to go
3 through the document. It's an order issued by you, but I'm only
4 interested in the rear battalion. Is that a manoeuvre component? Is that
5 unit in a blockade? Does it have a third task? Can you explain about the
6 rear battalion.
7 A. The rear battalion is a logistical unit for supplies. It's not a
8 combat unit, it's not a manoeuvre unit, it doesn't receive combat tasks
9 except to protect itself in the areas where it's located. In this
10 particular case, as this was a large area of land which had to be blocked,
11 they received the task on one axis where it was not expected or there was
12 a very small likelihood that various forces would turn up. They were to
13 be there and seal off a certain territory together with other non-combat
14 units, such as the communications company, the engineers company. They
15 were to seal off that territory which was some seven, eight, or ten
16 kilometres long, and through that line of blockade to prevent terrorist
17 forces from pulling out in the direction of Mount Sara. When this action
18 of routing the terrorist forces in Retimlje was carried out where the
19 command of the 124th Brigade was located.
20 Q. Thank you, thank you. Whose 124th Brigade?
21 A. That's 124th Brigade of the KLA from the Operative Zone Pastrik.
22 Q. These forces engaged in the blockade, do they go to cleanse the
23 village, to clear the village?
24 A. The blocking forces take up positions on one line. They do not
25 engage in any manoeuvre, any movement. They have to stay on that line
1 and, as required, to build fortifications on that line and to remain on
2 the line until the assignment is completed.
3 MR. CEPIC: Could we have Exhibit Number P1995. I hope that this
4 document is not under seal.
5 Q. [Interpretation] General, do you see the document before you?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Is it yours?
8 A. Yes, that's a document of my brigade created after the execution
9 of this action under the previous order.
10 MR. CEPIC: Could we have the second page in B/C/S, probably in
11 English also is the second, count 2, please.
12 Q. [Interpretation] We see the forces enumerated here, but we don't,
13 or rather, is the logistical battalion here somewhere in these -- among
14 these forces? Can you just take a brief look.
15 A. No, not as far as I can see.
16 Q. Let's look at --
17 MR. CEPIC: Move down in B/C/S; in English it's probably the next
19 Q. [Interpretation] Paragraph 7 in point 2.
20 MR. CEPIC: Next page in English, please.
21 Q. [Interpretation] It begins with the words: "In the course of the
22 third day of the b/d, the mopping-up operation of the remaining area
23 around the village ..."
24 Can you see it?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Read the last sentence of that paragraph.
2 A. "The forces under the blockade along the asphalt road and in the
3 area of Siroko, Smac, and Donja Srbica were still in their positions."
4 Q. What does that mean and do these forces include the battalion we
5 mentioned before?
6 A. Yes. That means that all the forces in the blockade in that
7 section and in the section of the Prizren-Djakovica asphalt road who were
8 performing the blockade kept standing in their places throughout all those
9 days, as they had been ordered. That's why they are called the blocking
10 forces, forces performing the blockade. They don't move.
11 MR. CEPIC: Could we have Exhibit Number 20 -- P2015, please.
12 Q. [Interpretation] Would you please read the heading and the date.
13 A. "Joint Command for KiM, strictly confidential number 455-64, 23
14 March 1999, military secret, strictly confidential."
15 Q. Did you used to receive such documents?
16 A. Well, that is the document that precedes the task. It's the
17 document from the Pristina Corps, on the basis of which I wrote my own
18 order, on the basis of which the mission was later accomplished.
19 Q. From whom did you receive this document?
20 A. Like all the other documents from the superior command, I received
21 it from the Pristina Corps.
22 Q. How? How would you normally receive such documents, can you
24 A. For as long as it was possible and practicable, and at this time
25 it was still possible, messengers [Realtime transcript read in error
1 "messages"] from my brigade would go to Pristina and would bring back
2 military post in a special locked pouch. And all these orders were inside
3 envelopes, properly sealed, with stamps affixed, and numbered.
4 MR. CEPIC: We have error in transcript, Your Honour. Page 65,
5 line 13. Not messages, but couriers.
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, they would have been messengers, yeah.
7 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
8 Could we have Exhibit Number 5D1365, please. Could we have
9 horizontal, please, and upper left corner a little bit bigger, please.
10 Q. [Interpretation] General, is this the kind of envelope that you
11 received such post? What is this?
12 A. Right. In the left corner we see the stamp of the military post.
13 Q. But tell us, what is this.
14 A. It's a regular envelope in which documents and orders from the
15 Pristina Corps were received.
16 Q. Can you explain the stamp in the left upper corner? Whose stamp
17 is it? What does it mean?
18 A. It's the stamp of the Pristina Corps, that is, the military post
19 of the Pristina Corps. We call it the rectangular stamp into which
20 confidentiality indication is inscribed, the number of the document inside
21 and the date when the document was created. On the other side they write
22 whether it's delivered by courier or in some other way. In the bottom
23 corner we see military post of the receiving brigade, that's my brigade,
24 549th Motorised. And this reference to Jablanica, that's a reference to a
25 military activity that took place in the month of April in the broader
1 area of Jablanica, and that's why this is written there.
2 Q. Would you please read the number in the left upper corner on the
3 stamp that you described.
4 A. "Strictly confidential 455-115."
5 MR. CEPIC: Could we have P2003.
6 Q. [Interpretation] Will you read the strictly confidential number in
7 the left upper corner.
8 A. "Strictly confidential 455-115, dated 2nd April."
9 Q. What about Jablanica, is that the same number we saw on the
11 A. Yes, it's the same number, and from the other numbers that I see
12 this is the order that was inside the envelope because it's written in
13 pencil that it's my brigade in the upper right corner.
14 Q. [No interpretation]
15 MR. CEPIC: Your Honour, is it appropriate time for a break?
16 JUDGE BONOMY: [Microphone not activated]
17 MR. CEPIC: I'm sorry, I didn't --
18 JUDGE BONOMY: If this is a convenient time to interrupt you.
19 MR. CEPIC: No, it is not, but my colleagues are so upset. I
20 would like to continue, but -- I would like to continue with your leave,
21 Your Honour.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: For how long?
23 MR. CEPIC: Maybe five minutes or --
24 JUDGE BONOMY: Okay, just do that. I think that we have such a
25 long break this time that that's in order.
1 MR. CEPIC: Thank you.
2 Could we have on our screens P2015, please.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Before we move on to that, Mr. Delic --
4 MR. CEPIC: Just the number is important -- I'm sorry.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: -- the Jablanica that's referred to here is in
6 which municipality?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Jablanica, that's in Djakovica
8 municipality, part of it; the other part is in Decani municipality.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: And is it the only Jablanica in that area?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
12 Mr. Cepic.
13 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
14 Q. [Interpretation] Do you see, General, the number and the date in
15 the upper left corner. Read only that.
16 A. Yes. 455-63, dated 23rd March 1999.
17 MR. CEPIC: Could we have Exhibit Number, again, P1995. First
18 paragraph, please.
19 Q. [Interpretation] General, would you read the first paragraph,
20 please. It begins with the words: "In the period from 25th March until
21 29 March ..."
22 A. "In the period from 25 March until 29 March 1999, pursuant to the
23 Order by the Commander of the 549th Motorised Brigade for providing the
24 support to the MUP, Ministry of the Interior, forces and pursuant to the
25 Order by the Pristina Corps, strictly confidential number 455-63 dated
1 23rd March 1999 ..."
2 Q. Thank you. General, based on which document are you informing the
3 Pristina Corps, is that the one we saw a moment ago or another one?
4 A. On the basis of that order, the previous one and my own order, I
5 notified the command of the Pristina Corps of the accomplished task and I
6 informed them how it was accomplished.
7 Q. You read the number and the previous number and date. Are they
8 the same?
9 A. Yes, the same number, the same date.
10 Q. To whom was this analysis sent?
11 A. To my command, the command of the Pristina Corps, that is, my
12 superior commander.
13 Q. General, we saw in the heading that it says "Joint Command." It
14 doesn't read "Pristina Corps." How did you understand the origin of that
15 previous document, 455-63?
16 A. There was never any doubt in my mind, regardless of the reference
17 to the Joint Command in the heading. I always knew that it was from my
18 commander, that is, the command of the Pristina Corps, because concerning
19 these tasks that were very extensive during my morning briefings to the
20 commander and debriefings, I had previously received a verbal instruction
21 from him that as soon as this task is handed down I should proceed to
22 coordinate with the MUP and prepare my units for the execution of that
23 task. So when I received the order I didn't really pay much attention to
24 the heading at the top, this reference to the Joint Command, because it
25 meant absolutely nothing to me.
1 Q. Thank you, General.
2 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Delic, we need to have a break again, this time
4 until 2.15, and we will resume in a different courtroom, in Courtroom I.
5 Please again would you leave the courtroom with the usher.
6 [The witness stands down]
7 --- Luncheon recess taken at 12.55 p.m.
8 --- On resuming at 2.15 p.m.
9 [The witness takes the stand]
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Please continue, Mr. Cepic.
11 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
12 Q. [Interpretation] General, it's me again. General, Prosecution
13 witnesses Isuf Zhuniqi and Sabri Popaj testified here and they claim that
14 on the 25th of March, 1999, forces of the FRY and Serbia surrounded and
15 attacked the village of Bela Crkva. I would be interested in the
16 following: On that day, did your forces surround that village?
17 A. That is absolutely not correct. In military terminology when one
18 says to encircle, to surround, that means to encircle a territory from all
19 sides. The village of Bela Crkva was never encircled.
20 Q. Thank you. Your forces on that morning, did they have any
21 activity in the village of Bela Crkva?
22 A. On that morning, sometime from 5.00 until 5.30, my forces went
23 through the village of Bela Crkva towards the hill of Amovac. That was
24 Combat Group 2 from my brigade. I, myself, went through Bela Crkva on
25 that morning, also sometime between 5.00 and 6.00. I continued according
1 to my plan through Bela Crkva, Orahovac, to the location that I decided
2 would be my command post during these combat activities from the 25th
3 until the 28th of March.
4 Q. Did a unit remain in the village?
5 A. Units of the second combat group, as they came in marching order,
6 they came through the village of Crkva, Bela Crkva, from the west side,
7 they went to the east side, to the foot of that hill, Amovac, from where
8 they started taking up initial positions.
9 Q. Did they stop in the village itself? Did they have some activity
10 in the village itself at that point in time?
11 A. No, they did not have any activity in the village. I stayed very
12 briefly just to see whether the units arrived according to plan and
13 whether everything was all right. That's around 5.00. The village was
14 peaceful. Truth to tell, I did not see any civilians, any civilian
15 population; only the barking of dogs could be heard in the village.
16 Q. Thank you, General. Prosecution witness Sabri Popaj claims that
17 the army and police around the 18th of March, 1999, started digging
18 trenches above the village at a distance of 1 kilometre and that that is
19 where they placed two anti-aircraft guns or cannons. My question is
20 whether the army did have positions above the village of Bela Crkva on the
21 eve of the war and during the war?
22 A. That is absolutely not correct. There were no other troops there
23 apart from my troops, and there was no need for any trenches to be dug and
24 for some military positions to be there.
25 Q. Thank you. The same witness alleges that on the morning of the
1 25th of March, 1999, five tanks passed by, out of which two tanks entered
2 the school-yard, where they stayed until the 4th of May, 1999. Is that
4 A. That is not correct. Three tanks by which Combat Group 2 had been
5 reinforced passed that morning through the village, just like other units,
6 and they got out to the eastern rim of the village. Later on, when the
7 unit set out, it set out just like the other part of the unit towards the
8 village of -- towards the hill of Amovac. However, my units, my tanks, on
9 those days never returned to that village again. Upon completing their
10 activity on the 28th, they all returned to their own areas. So it is
11 impossible for them to be, or rather, to have tanks or combat equipment
12 there because no one else had tanks in that area except for me.
13 Q. Thank you.
14 MR. CEPIC: Could we have Exhibit Number 5D1332, please.
15 Q. [Interpretation] While we're waiting for the map, witness --
16 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not hear the name --
17 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. -- says that some villages used flame-throwers in the village. My
19 question is whether the Army of Yugoslavia had flame-throwers at all?
20 A. After the Second World War up until 1955 or 1956, there were
21 flame-throwers but they were taken out of all units, they were
22 decommissioned, and they haven't been in the military for a long, long
23 time now.
24 Q. The witness concerned is Isuf Zhuniqi; it was his claim, his
1 MR. CEPIC: Could we scroll -- could we zoom in, please, central
2 part. Zoom out, please. A little bit up, scroll up, up, up, sorry,
3 opposite direction. That's fine, and could you zoom in now. Upper part,
4 if it's possible to zoom in, a little bit left, down -- down, down,
5 please, yes.
6 Q. [Interpretation] General, could you just give us instructions as
7 to how it would be easiest for us to find Bela Crkva and Celine on this
9 A. You have to move it to the left. The other way around.
10 MR. CEPIC: Right-hand side, please, right-hand side, please.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Now a bit up --
12 MR. CEPIC: Down, please.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, that's it.
14 MR. CEPIC: Could you scroll down, please.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You can see it here now.
16 MR. CEPIC: Okay. Could you zoom in the part of the map where we
17 have the numbers 549, please. Upper right corner -- actually, upper left
18 corner. A little bit down. Okay. That's fine.
19 Q. [Interpretation] General, can you find your way on this map or
20 should we use another map?
21 A. Well, I can find my way, that's no problem. I know this
23 Q. Can you see where the village of Bela Crkva is?
24 A. Yes, yes.
25 MR. CEPIC: Could we have electronic pen, please, for General.
1 Q. [Interpretation] Could you first tell me what your task was on
2 that morning, why were your forces on the move?
3 A. These are documents through which we already went. The task of
4 the brigade was, in coordination with MUP forces, to block the terrorist
5 forces, primarily referring to the 124th Brigade of the KLA from Operation
6 Zone Pastrik that was in the area of Suva Reka, Orahovac, Prizren.
7 However, the blockade should be along the line of the road from the
8 village of Pirane, to the village of Rogovo, and on the other side,
9 including Gornja Srbica, Donja Srbica, in that general direction. As for
10 the other forces from the area of Suva Reka, part of them, rather, from
11 the area of Orahovac, they should be linked up and the terrorist forces
12 should be encircled, the terrorist forces that were in the area of
13 Retimlje where the command of the 124th Brigade was in the first place. I
14 can mark these locations where they are.
15 Q. Would you please.
16 A. What do you think is best for me, how should I mark Bela Crkva?
17 Just as a dot?
18 Q. Just move -- just draw the axis of how your unit was moving and
19 describe for us its further movement.
20 A. As for its further movement, since part of Combat Group 2 from the
21 area of the winery, the wine cellar, also went up to the hill called
22 Amovac, on this line they were to take up initial positions, and from
23 these positions they were to go out to attack Retimlje. Am I to draw that
24 direction, that axis too?
25 Q. Would you please and draw a circle around Retimlje.
1 A. The direction of the attack -- well, this pen doesn't really work
2 very well, does it? That's for Combat Group 2. It went through Bela
4 Q. General, where was there the first armed conflict with the KLA
6 A. The KLA forces -- well, the first clash was in the village of
8 Q. Could you please mark that?
9 A. Well, it's the same colour, otherwise we use different colours to
10 mark things.
11 Q. Just a second, please.
12 MR. CEPIC: Could we have the blue pen, please.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The village of Celine, the village
14 of Brestovac, and the village of Nogavac, it's along this axis.
15 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Right. We're interested in that axis now. You said that you went
17 through the village of Bela Crkva, that there was no activity there, and
18 you marked the village of Celine for us. Prosecution witnesses appeared
19 Agim Jemini and Reshit Salihi, and they claim that the forces of the FRY
20 and Serbia on that day, the 25th [Realtime transcript read error "24th"]
21 of March, 1999, surrounded the village of Celine with tanks and armoured
22 personnel carriers. Could you please tell me, did you have armoured
23 personnel carriers in your units?
24 A. No --
25 MR. HANNIS: Your Honour, if I may --
1 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Hannis.
2 MR. HANNIS: -- when my learned friend is making reference to
3 prior allegations of the Prosecution witnesses, if I could have a specific
4 reference, either to a paragraph in their statement or a line in the
5 transcript because I want to verify that the way it's being read out is
6 accurately reflecting exactly how those witnesses phrased it.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Cepic, can you do that?
8 MR. CEPIC: I will try to do my best to give the reference during
9 this session. I read the transcripts and the statements, which are in
10 system, because all those witnesses are -- they were testified under the
11 Rule 92 ter.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: The reference to the statement would also satisfy
13 Mr. Hannis, I think.
14 MR. HANNIS: That's correct, Your Honour. I mean, the phrase
15 sometimes used "surrounded the village," that may not be the way the
16 witness testified but that's the question the witness is answering and
17 it's not meeting head-on is my concern.
18 MR. CEPIC: I'll clarify that in very short period of time.
19 May I continue, Your Honour?
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes.
21 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
22 Q. [Interpretation] They state that the village of Celine on that
23 morning was surrounded, General.
24 MR. HANNIS: Well, I don't have the reference --
25 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. -- did your forces --
2 MR. HANNIS: I don't have the reference.
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Do we have the reference for that?
4 MR. CEPIC: If we have just one minute, please, I'll give you the
6 [Defence counsel confer]
7 MR. CEPIC: Your Honours.
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes.
9 MR. CEPIC: I just received information that there are plenty of
10 technical problems right now also look as Defence team has got that
11 problem, my assistant. I hope Mr. Visnjic has got --
12 MR. VISNJIC: [Interpretation] The Agim Jemini transcript in the
13 Milosevic case, P525353.
14 JUDGE BONOMY: That will be T, I think, rather than P and there
15 must be one number too many in that. It was a long trial but not that
17 MR. VISNJIC: [Microphone not activated]
18 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone.
19 MR. VISNJIC: P2353.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Oh, it's a Prosecution exhibit?
21 MR. VISNJIC: Yes.
22 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, perhaps I can assist.
23 Prosecution Exhibit 52338 is the statement of Agim Jemini, paragraph 2, 4,
24 and 3 of his statement.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: You're drowning in a sea of references yet,
1 Mr. Hannis?
2 MR. HANNIS: Well, Your Honour, I know our exhibits haven't
3 reached the 50.000 level yet --
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, the first one is 5353, I think -- sorry,
6 MR. HANNIS: I believe that number's too high for a witness
8 MR. PETROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, the reference that I
9 gave was 52338, or rather, P2338.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Still too high, Mr. Hannis?
11 MR. HANNIS: 2338 seems to be a reference to that witness's
12 transcript in Milosevic.
13 MR. CEPIC: No, no.
14 MR. HANNIS: Okay, that's his statement. I'm sorry. I apologise,
15 Your Honour.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, you can continue with the question now,
17 Mr. Cepic, because it doesn't actually depend on the particular word
18 that's in issue here. What you want to know is whether there were any
19 personnel carriers.
20 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
21 Q. [Interpretation] General, did you have within your troops armoured
22 personnel carriers?
23 A. Since I had a motorised unit, we did not have any APCs.
24 Q. Thank you. General, on that morning did your forces surround the
25 village of Celine?
1 A. No. The forces did not surround the village of Celine. The
2 forces were on the south-west side near the railway and the asphalt road
3 leading from Prizren to Zrze.
4 Q. Witness Jemini said that that settlement was shelled on that day.
5 Did your forces perhaps shell the village of Celine?
6 A. The forces did not shell the village of Celine. The support that
7 was given, the fire support that was given, was above the village of
8 Celine along the elevations where the trenches of terrorists were located.
9 So referring to the light artillery, I think those were 130-millimetre
10 guns. Fire was directed above the village, not affecting the houses.
11 Q. Can you please mark where the trenches were. Could you draw that
13 A. It's pretty difficult to do that, to draw that in. I'm trying to
14 draw one thing and something else comes up on the screen. Above the
15 village, towards the hill.
16 Q. Thank you, General. Please tell me, was the village of Celine
17 organized for combat and was there any combat there?
18 A. The first fire contact was in the village of Celine and it was a
19 police unit that had it. I think it was at around 7.00 a.m.
20 Q. Tell me, General, did your forces pass through the village?
21 A. After the police unit neutralised the terrorist forces in the
22 village, the activities continued on towards the village of Velika Krusa
23 and Ram Dubrava, along that axis. The forces that were at Amovac
24 continued activities towards Nogavac, Brestovac, and Mala Hoca, thus part
25 of my forces which came from the direction of Bela Crkva sometime at
1 around 10.00 passed after the police along their axis through the village
2 of Celine along the road leading from Bela Crkva towards Celine.
3 Following that, a mortar platoon, 120-millimetre mortars, passed through.
4 They did not open fire from the sector of Bela Crkva because there was no
5 need for that. They moved to a different firing position, which was to
6 the east of the village of Celine.
7 Q. Tell me, please, did your forces remain in Celine?
8 A. No, they did not have such task. They continued on along the axis
9 Nogavac-Brestovac-Mala Hoca, towards Retimlje.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: What is the date that this occurred, Mr. Delic?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] 25th of March, all of it.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: You see, the evidence I think we're dealing with is
13 about the 24th of March. No?
14 MR. CEPIC: Your Honour, I think 25th of May --
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Of March. So there's --
16 MR. CEPIC: March --
17 JUDGE BONOMY: -- is there an error then of the transcript at page
18 6, line 12?
19 MR. CEPIC: Yeah, this is an error. It has to be 25th of March.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Thank you.
21 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
22 Q. [Interpretation] General, Witness Agim Jemini stated that members
23 of the army entered the village in lines of four soldiers and that they
24 surrounded the village from 9.30 to 10.00 in this manner and that there
25 were 500 soldiers coming from all directions. Is this true?
1 A. No, that's not true. It is very strange to say that the soldiers
2 came in in lines of four. They did not attend a parade. They were in a
3 combat march and there was no need for them to surround the village
4 anymore after this combat contact with police, which lasted for about one
5 hour and 40 minutes, following which the police took the village. So that
6 my forces which came from Bela Crkva to the village after the police
7 forces simply passed through the village. There was no longer any
8 resistance in the village because the terrorists had withdrawn along the
9 axis from Celine towards Ram Dubrava and Donje Retimlje.
10 Q. Would you please draw in the movement of BG-2, please.
11 A. [Marks]
12 Q. Thank you, General. We heard from the said witness that the army
13 remained in the village for another two days.
14 A. That's not true. The army did not stay on. They passed through
15 Bela Crkva, and following that they passed partially through Celine and
16 partially through Brestovac, Nogavac, and then they continued towards the
17 task, towards the general goal, which was Retimlje. We have simply been
18 following BG-2 here, and during that time other units moved along their
19 own axis.
20 Q. We'll get to that as well. We need to cover the village of Celine
21 first. Did your forces perhaps loot or destroy property and destroy the
22 old village in Celine on that day as they passed through?
23 A. Only active-duty soldiers participated in this activity because
24 there were no members who had been mobilised. Active-duty soldiers do not
25 loot. What could they loot when such soldiers only carry their back-packs
1 on their backs, and those back-packs can only carry a lunch, some
2 bandages, 150 bullets of a combat set, and perhaps one or two
3 hand-grenades. That's all that they can fit into their back-pack or
4 rucksack. So I don't see what could they have possibly looted and carry
5 with them. Ultimately, they had their superiors accompanying them and it
6 was their duty [as interpreted] to prevent such conduct.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: When you moved, were you on roads or were you on
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If you're referring to Bela Crkva,
10 we had come along the asphalt group [as interpreted]. The combat group
11 had moved from Djakovica across Zrze along the asphalt road towards Bela
12 Crkva. Following that, they took the macadam road through Bela Crkva
13 towards the eastern border of Bela Crkva. After that the unit did not
14 move along roads, they moved along the manoeuvre terrain. They crossed
15 the creek running along Nogavac, Brestovac, and Mala Hoca wherever it was
16 possible. I'm here referring to the combat equipment.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
18 Mr. Cepic.
19 MR. CEPIC: Your Honour, with your leave, I think that we have a
20 small error in transcript, page 12, lines 22 and 23, I think actually in
21 line 23 we missed the word -- he said: "It was their duty and order to
22 prevent such conduct."
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
24 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. General, now that we're dealing with the village of Celine, I have
1 just one question pertaining to the time when the OSCE mission was on the
2 ground. Did you have a check-point nearby the village of Celine during
3 the OSCE mission?
4 A. No. Not only did -- not only we didn't have any check-point,
5 nobody else did. We were not allowed to do that because we were within
6 the border belt. The police also had a limited number of observation
7 points and there were absolutely no observation points along this road or
8 in any of the settlements.
9 Q. Was that territory under the control of the KLA?
10 A. From January, February, and onwards, through March, the number of
11 problems in that territory was on the increase. I have already said so
12 and you can see it in one of the documents. We have already examined that
13 the territory of Suva Reka, Orahovac, and Velika Krusa increasingly came
14 under the control of terrorists. And already in February the road leading
15 from Suva Reka across Studencane towards Orahovac was closed. One
16 couldn't use that road except when the OSCE mission escorted police
17 patrols. The other road was open, that is, the road between Prizren and
18 Djakovica; however, there had been attacks along that road on individual
19 vehicles, MUP vehicles, MUP patrols. As for my unit, since I didn't move
20 along that road, I used other roads for the border belt, there had been no
21 attacks on my units in that area. It was particularly frequent in the
22 area of Pirane.
23 Q. Did your soldiers perhaps wear black uniforms?
24 A. All soldiers of my brigade wore prescribed uniforms, M-89; as for
25 military police, they had uniforms M-94. Those are camouflage uniforms,
1 greenish in colour, that are establishment uniforms in the army. Nobody
2 wore black uniforms because such uniforms did not exist in the Army of
4 Q. General, did your soldiers wear Tito-style caps?
5 A. No. They were put out of use a long time ago. All soldiers wore
7 Q. Thank you. General, did your soldiers wear bands around their
8 heads in that area?
9 A. I don't understand, what would those bands signify? They would
10 signify lack of discipline and soldiers did not wear such bands around
11 their heads.
12 Q. All right. Thank you. You have already mentioned that while
13 carrying out that assignment, that task, you had no reservists among your
14 forces. Witness Agim Jemini claimed that he recognised some soldiers from
15 Orahovac who were between 30 and 40 years old. Were there any military
16 units in Orahovac and did you have any soldiers of that age carrying out
17 that assignment?
18 A. As far as I know, there were never any troops in Orahovac. There
19 is no garrison there, no barracks. And as for the age of the soldiers, my
20 soldiers were between 20 and 21 years old, those were conscripts serving
21 their military service.
22 Q. Thank you, General. General, could you please show you us the
23 axes of movement of other units in the implementation of these -- this
24 task, and could you indicate to us whether your forces -- the 25th,
1 A. From Orahovac --
2 MR. CEPIC: In the meantime, Your Honour, with your leave, is it
3 technically possible to have an IC number for this first map, actually
4 drawing, and later on to keep the same drawing and to add something more.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: [Microphone not activated]
6 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: [Microphone not activated].
8 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the presiding Judge, please.
9 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: You can give it an IC number and then when you want
11 to add to it, you call up the IC number and not the original exhibit
12 number. So you wish a number now, do you?
13 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour, if it's possible to have IC
14 number, please.
15 THE REGISTRAR: That would be IC150, Your Honours.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
17 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. General, could you indicate to us the axis of movement of the
19 second unit of your composition that was moving towards Retimlje.
20 A. Combat Group 6.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Do you want it back on the screen now, Mr. --
22 MR. CEPIC: Yes, Your Honour.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Well, I think that's what you have.
24 MR. CEPIC: Thank you.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: Do we have a third colour --
1 MR. CEPIC: If we could see IC150, please.
2 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
3 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
4 Q. General, can you indicate it to us now.
5 A. Combat Group 6 moved from the direction of Orahovac. This colour
6 now is quite different.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: That's the idea. You're going to get the
8 full-coloured pencil set.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Combat Group 7 moved along this
10 road, along the road towards Suva Reka.
11 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. I'm now interested in Velika Krusa and Mala Krusa. I'd like to
13 put a few questions to you in relation to that.
14 A. Along that axis, my Combat Group 1 from the asphalt road, that is
15 to say, including Pirane and to the cellar in Mala Krusa.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Delic, Suva Reka is towards the right-hand side
17 of this and you've put some black markings on the map. Are we talking
18 about those at the top those or those at the bottom?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. Cepic asked just now that I show
20 my forces that were in the area of Pirane and Mala Krusa. On the side of
21 Suva Reka, there were my forces as well.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, I'm now lost on what the black represents,
23 Mr. Cepic, or which road we're talking about towards Suva Reka.
24 MR. CEPIC: I think we'll spend a lot of time if we continue in
25 this way, so I will try to focus just on the main things and to clarify in
1 relation to those questions.
2 [Defence counsel confer]
3 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
4 Q. [Interpretation] General, let's just go back to the location of
5 Mala Krusa, Velika Krusa. You just said now that the disposition of
6 forces was from the village of Pirane to the wine cellar. Could you
7 please tell me --
8 A. These are forces of my Combat Group 1.
9 Q. Thank you. Your forces, that is, the 25th of March, 1999, did
10 they enter the villages themselves of Mala Krusa and Velika Krusa?
11 A. No. My forces did not enter these villages because these villages
12 were not on the axis of my forces. Part of my forces were from the 25th
13 to the 27th all the time on the asphalt road from Pirane to up near
14 Rogovo. But as for passing through these villages, that had to do with a
15 MUP unit --
16 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not hear the end of the
18 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. Now we would be interested in the following --
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Just a second. We haven't got the end of that
22 You said: "But as for passing through these villages, that had to
23 do with a MUP unit," and did you say a little more than that?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I said that through Velika Krusa and
25 Mala Krusa, along their axis, towards Ram Dubrava, MUP units passed.
1 MR. CEPIC: I'm sorry.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Continue.
3 MR. CEPIC: Sorry.
4 Q. [Interpretation] Was any fire opened from that direction of
5 Velika Krusa at the forces?
6 A. Yes. In Velika Krusa, in Mala Krusa, like in Celine, fire was
7 opened at our forces, the police.
8 Q. Could you please mark with a blue pen from where these -- the
9 position that these forces were firing from.
10 A. Perhaps I haven't practiced this enough, but it's very hard to do
11 this. This is roughly where these blue lines are. That is the upper half
12 of both villages, that is where the firing at the police came from.
13 Q. General, on the 25th of March, Combat Group 1, 25th of March,
14 1999, did Combat Group 1 keep its positions there or did it move on?
15 A. Combat Group 1, on the 25th of March, entered the village of
16 Pirane, and from the village of Pirane it was supposed to go towards the
17 village of Medvedce and Zojic.
18 Q. Could you please mark that for us.
19 A. Can I just underline these villages? The village of Zojic.
20 Q. Now let us briefly deal with the village of Pirane. Prosecution
21 witness Rahim Latifi testified here and he said on that morning, the 25th
22 of March, the forces of Serbia surrounded that village with tanks and
23 different vehicles and that then there was shelling. Could you tell us
24 what actually happened on that morning in Pirane on the 25th?
25 A. The village was not surrounded. The forces of the army were on
1 the road, and from the asphalt road they set up combat order and they
2 moved in this direction, partly towards Zojic and Medvedce and partly
3 towards Ram Dubrava. There was no firing from the first houses, but as
4 for the houses that are on the northern rim of the village, fire was
5 opened at the unit.
6 Q. Could you please mark this with blue.
7 A. There was no shelling of the village. The village had not been
8 surrounded, because if the army was only on its south-western side the
9 village was free, so to speak, towards Istok -- towards the east, towards
10 the west, and the units were moving along the following direction:
12 Q. Could you please mark that for us.
13 A. It's already marked here. There is an arrow showing that, showing
14 the direction of activity.
15 Q. Was this village a KLA stronghold?
16 A. Yes, this village was a KLA stronghold in the earlier period and
17 in the later period. There was a lot of firing from that village at the
19 Q. The road where you marked your forces, what road is that?
20 A. It's the Prizren-Djakovica road. It's a main road.
21 Q. Thank you. Could you tell me whether on that occasion your forces
22 destroyed the mosque in Pirane.
23 A. The mosque in Pirane was not destroyed during these initial
25 Q. Thank you. Could you tell me whether your unit remained in these
1 positions on that day or did it go on further north?
2 A. During the course of that day, the unit had reached the vineyards
3 that were above the village, towards Ram Dubrava; however, because it was
4 an open area and because of the fire that was coming from Ram Dubrava and
5 Medvedce, perhaps a few hundred metres away from the village, that is
6 where it spent that night, between the 25th and the 26th of March.
7 Q. Could you please mark that for us on the map.
8 A. [Marks]
9 Q. Could you place number 1 there at the location where your forces
10 spent the night.
11 A. [Marks]
12 Q. Have you placed a number there, General?
13 A. Yes, I think it can be seen.
14 Q. Well, we cannot see it.
15 A. Should I mark the number in a different colour then?
16 Q. No, use the same colour.
17 A. [Marks]
18 Q. That's right. Thank you.
19 General, up until the 26th, Combat Group 2 and the other forces
20 that went to Retimlje, how far did they get? Where did they stop during
21 the night between the 25th and the 26th?
22 A. [Marks]
23 Q. Thank you. Did they come across any resistance from the terrorist
24 forces there?
25 A. Although in this direction where parts of this combat group were,
1 towards the village of Brestovac, there was less firing and less
2 resistance. The resistance was further down south along the axis of those
3 units that were moving towards Ram Dubrava and Donje Retimlje; however,
4 that would roughly be the line where they were on the second day.
5 Q. Thank you --
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Cepic, what was the mark for where they
7 stopped? How is it marked so we can reflect it in the record?
8 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation].
9 Q. General, could you please put a number 2 at the location where
10 your forces stopped.
11 A. [Marks].
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
13 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
14 Q. [Interpretation] Now I would be interested in the following.
15 General, on the 25th, in the evening, did you go through Velika Krusa?
16 A. Yes. I went through part of Velika Krusa. I went through part of
17 Nogavac and Celine.
18 Q. Did you spend any time there?
19 A. I did not stay there longer than necessary. I think it was around
20 1900 hours in the evening that I came from the area of Orahovac via the
21 hill of Amovac, then I entered Nogavac here, then got to Velika Hoca --
22 no, Velika Krusa, where I met up with one of the commanders of the police
23 unit that had a problem here. One of my vehicles went with me, a tank,
24 because here in the area of the village of Nogavac this BOV-3 of the
25 police had tipped over and they could not get it out of the river. And
1 during the course of the day, I ordered a tank of mine to come from
2 Prizren and to wait for me at the exit from Orahovac and Velika Hoca. It
3 was already dark, so I got it there and I went together with this
4 commander to see where the BOV that had tipped over was. That is where I
5 issued an order to this officer of mine. I was still in that area around
6 2000 hours when they told me that my barracks at Prizren had been bombed;
7 namely, the building of the police.
8 When I issued that order, ordering that task, I got out of the
9 asphalt road here and went to Prizren to my barracks, where I saw what the
10 building looked like, the one that had been bombed around 2000 hours.
11 Q. Thank you.
12 MR. CEPIC: Your Honour, page 22, line 13, the witness said [B/C/S
13 spoken] but in transcript we have just the tank.
14 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: Recovery tank.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
16 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
17 Q. [Interpretation] General, you explained to us the disposition of
18 forces was on the 25th, you told us what the initial positions were on the
19 26th, you explained where the blocking forces were situated. Did you by
20 any chance hear that on the 26th of March, 1999, in Mala Krusa 105
21 Albanians had been killed. Did you have this information at your
23 A. I was not aware of that. I had not heard of that.
24 Q. And had you heard something like that, what measures would you
25 have taken?
1 A. As far as my unit is concerned, it is quite well-known what the
2 measures would have been. It would be impossible to do something of the
3 sort if any officers were around; but had I heard that anyone had done
4 something like that, I would have taken the following measures. I would
5 have arrested my personnel immediately and sent them to the military
6 court. If I had heard that somebody else had done something like that,
7 for instance, a MUP unit, I would immediately have informed the chief of
8 the secretariat because he was the highest-ranking police officer in that
10 Q. Thank you, General.
11 JUDGE BONOMY: Some clarification, Mr. Delic. You said that the
12 barracks at Prizren were bombed and you referred to these as being the
13 barracks of the police, the building of the police. Do you mean a MUP
14 building or do you mean the military police?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, in some of the barracks
16 in Kosovo and Metohija, because of some problems that dated from the
17 1980s, there would be a building in one such -- in each barracks of that
18 kind that belonged to the police, not the military police, but the regular
19 police; so in Prizren, Djakovica, Pec, and I think in Pristina too, there
20 was a building, a police building, within our barracks. This building
21 that was targeted by three missiles, it was a police building, three
22 police officers were killed, and two were wounded.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: The other point of clarification I would like is:
24 When did you learn about the murder of the 105 Albanians?
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] As far as this is concerned, I can't
1 really tell you now specifically when the indictment was made public and
2 when we learned from our subordinate -- from our superiors. I know that
3 General Pavkovic called the officers from Kosovo and Metohija to report.
4 I was asked specifically about this area because I was the commander. He
5 asked me what I knew about that and whether my unit had done that, and
6 then we were given an order to write a statement about what we knew about
7 those events that were made public in the indictment --
8 JUDGE BONOMY: I just want to know when you discovered.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I think it was in the year 2000.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: And on the 2 --
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Or maybe --
12 JUDGE BONOMY: I'm sorry?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I think it was the year 2000, not
14 2001. I think it was 2000.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: And where were you on the 26th of March?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] On the 26th of March, 1999? Well, I
17 can show you the exact spot where I was on the 25th and on the 26th.
18 JUDGE BONOMY: But you had got back to Prizren on the evening of
19 the 25th. Were you back in the area on the map on the 26th?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes, yes, I went back to the
21 same spot on the 26th to --
22 JUDGE BONOMY: How close were you to Mala Krusa on the 26th, at
23 any time on the 26th?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I was about 5 to 6 kilometres
25 away from Mala Krusa. I was on the opposite direction on the
1 Orahovac-Suva Reka road at Krasta feature, where I had decided that my
2 command post should be, and I was accompanied by the deputy commander of
3 the 37th Police Detachment, Major Grujic.
4 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
5 Mr. Cepic.
6 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
7 Could we have an IC number for this document, please?
8 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes.
9 THE REGISTRAR: That will be IC151, Your Honours.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
11 MR. CEPIC: Thank you.
12 Q. [Interpretation] General, you said that you heard about this
13 incident at Mala and Velika Krusa. Do you know if anyone was ever
14 convicted for this incident? Did you hear anything of the sort?
15 A. I did hear that because at the same time the president of the
16 municipality of Orahovac was convicted and another man, I think his last
17 name is Jovanovic or Blagojevic. They were tried in Prizren before a
18 regular court, and this man was tried for the crimes committed in
19 Bela Crkva, Celine, Mala Krusa, Velika Krusa for the deportations, rapes,
20 everything that was in the indictment he was charged with that.
21 Q. Thank you.
22 A. I think his last name is Blagojevic.
23 Q. General, were there any situations in your unit where civilians
24 would be killed or where there would be other violations of international
25 humanitarian law?
1 A. Well, there were such situations in my unit too, in the period
2 that followed.
3 Q. Were any of these crimes prosecuted?
4 A. There were three cases. We learned about two of these at the
5 moment when they happened, one involved a soldier who killed a civilian,
6 it was a military police officer. He was arrested by the military police
7 and was handed over to the war court. The other situation involved an
8 officer who also committed a crime, it was a captain by the name of
9 Vujadin Stekovic. He was also arrested and was sent to face the war court
10 in Pristina.
11 Q. Thank you.
12 A. Later on, we learned about yet another crime that was allegedly
13 committed by two soldiers and two officers; they were also prosecuted
14 before the military court in Nis.
15 Q. Thank you, General --
16 JUDGE BONOMY: What were these crimes? You've told us the first
17 one was murder but what were the other two?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] All three crimes were murders of
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
21 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation]
22 Q. How many civilians were killed in those incidents?
23 A. Seven civilians were killed, and in 1998, since it says in all my
24 records that eight civilians were killed, in 1998 another Albanian
25 civilian was killed or died, but it was in the course of a night-time
1 engagement with the terrorists and he was on the opposite side but he came
2 out to the terrace of his house and he switched on the light and the unit
3 that had been under attack opened fire and killed him. But we dealt with
4 that incident with his parents, we talked to his parents and the people
5 from the village, and they came to realize that this was not done on
7 JUDGE BONOMY: This is an extra one over and above the other
8 three, is it?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes, but it is not a war crime.
10 The three instances happened during the war, the ones that I mentioned,
11 but this one was before the war, in 1998.
12 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Cepic, are you going to be presenting any
13 formal records of these prosecutions?
14 MR. CEPIC: Yes, Your Honour.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: For all three of the prosecutions?
16 MR. CEPIC: Yes.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
18 MR. CEPIC: Actually, I haven't got documents from the court, but
19 I have the exhibit which is P962. This exhibit is from the brigade --
20 actually, 549th Brigade about all criminal records.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, often these don't tell us what happened in
22 the cases. In this instance do we know what actually happened, whether
23 there were convictions and sentences?
24 MR. CEPIC: We've got some informations in relation to that case.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: All right. Thank you.
1 MR. CEPIC: And also this document reflected some information
2 about the judgements and the further procedure in those cases. May I
3 continue, Your Honour?
4 [Trial Chamber confers]
5 JUDGE BONOMY: Are you wanting that on the screen or are you
6 continuing with something else?
7 MR. CEPIC: With your leave, a little bit later just to finish the
8 crime base.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: Yes, certainly.
10 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
11 Q. [Interpretation] General, were your forces in the village of
12 Nogavac itself from the 25th until the 28th of March, 1999?
13 A. My forces only passed through the village of Nogavac. They stayed
14 only for as long as it was necessary to go on, so maybe 10 to 15 minutes,
15 and in this period or, in fact, even after this period they never came
16 back to that territory.
17 Q. General, did your forces have any contact and did they surround
18 8.000 people around -- close to the village of Nogavac and order them to
19 leave that area on the 26th of March, 1999?
20 A. I never heard of any instance where 8.000 people would be gathered
21 in a single place except in statements, and this I talked about in 2005.
22 The commander of the 2nd Battalion, who was also the commander of Combat
23 Group 2 at that time, reported that there was a group of about 200 people,
24 women and children, who were there, close to the village of Nogavac. I
25 don't know whether it was in Brzina or in Potok.
1 Q. Thank you, General. And on the 28th of March, did your forces by
2 any chance force the people to get out of the woods there - we're now
3 talking about the village of Celine - took their ID documents and forced
4 them to walk to Prizren?
5 A. You said on the 28th of March?
6 Q. Yes, the 28th of March, that's the village of Celine.
7 A. On the 28th of March my units were not there at all. They were in
8 an area completely away from Celine. Combat Group 2 was in the area of
9 the village of Mamusa and Combat Group 5 was in the vicinity of the
10 village of Dobrodeljane, and by the 28th of March all the other combat
11 groups had already come back to their positions and started launching
12 attacks in the direction of Malisevo.
13 Q. Thank you, General. On the 2nd of April, 1999, as alleged by
14 Witness Isuf Zhuniqi, an air bomb was dropped from Yugoslav air force
15 aeroplane on the village of Nogavac. Is that possible at all, sir?
16 A. This is not possible because our air force was not flying in the
17 air-space above the whole of the state, and particularly not above Kosovo
18 and Metohija. The aircraft, the air force, the aeroplanes that were up at
19 the beginning of the war were mostly active in the skies above Belgrade,
20 but then they were mostly destroyed, but those were fighter planes
21 carrying missiles designed to engage enemy aircraft. Our aircraft did not
22 carry bombs. At that time it was impossible for our planes to take off,
23 given that NATO had absolute supremacy in the air-space.
24 Q. Thank you, General.
25 MR. CEPIC: Your Honour, we already saw the video clip. My
1 learned friend Mr. Visnjic played for us, 3D710. And my learned friend
2 Hannis objected about that exhibit because he explained that
3 General Smiljanic wasn't there in Nogavac on 2nd April of 1999. So with
4 your leave, I would like to play this short video clip.
5 MR. HANNIS: Well, Your Honour, if -- I'm not sure if this General
6 was here and seeing it he can tell us that, but I don't know that we need
7 to show it to him first. If he was there, he can tell us that and then
8 maybe we can play the video.
9 JUDGE BONOMY: How about that, Mr. Cepic?
10 MR. CEPIC: Actually, we have another exhibit number, it is the
11 same material but different exhibit number. And I will ask -- before we
12 play --
13 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
14 MR. CEPIC: -- I will ask the witness to clarify this situation
15 and about this video. Thank you, Your Honour.
16 Q. [Interpretation] General, in proofing I showed you this video
17 clip, Nogavac, the 2nd of April, 1999. Can you tell us something more
18 about this event. What is this all about?
19 A. Early in the morning on the 2nd of April, NATO aviation bombed the
20 village -- the houses in the village of Nogavac. A number of houses were
21 destroyed, a lot of civilians were killed, those who were wounded were
22 treated by us in the Prizren hospital. On the following day, the Ministry
23 of the Interior Prizren SUP carried out an on-site investigation and
24 established the facts.
25 Q. Would you please tell us something about the origin of the clip
1 that I showed you during proofing.
2 A. This is a clip of the Radio Television Serbia, the Prizren studio.
3 Q. Who produced this clip, do you remember?
4 A. Yes, I do. I remember that there was Borivoje Ugrinovic on the
5 spot, he was in charge of that studio incidentally. There was also a
6 cameraman there, as far as I remember, that was somebody called Sakotic;
7 he works in the Belgrade studio of Radio Television Serbia nowadays.
8 Q. Were you in Nogavac yourself on that morning?
9 A. No. I learned of it later. I talked to the chief of the
10 secretariat. I was shown this clip, this footage. Since we asked that
11 every location that was bombed in those first days be recorded on video
12 camera or if this was in the -- in the border belt, we asked that it be
13 done by our people and in locations elsewhere it was done by the people
14 from the studio in Prizren, the studio of Radio Television Serbia.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: When was it you were told about the filming that
16 had been done and shown it?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was -- it happened on the 2nd in
18 the morning and it was filmed that very day, probably at around noon,
20 JUDGE BONOMY: When was it shown to you?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I saw it on the same day, sometime
22 in the afternoon or in the evening.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Carry on then, Mr. Visnjic -- Mr. Cepic, if you
24 want to show it.
25 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
1 Could we play this video, please, 5D1242, please.
2 [Videotape played]
3 MR. CEPIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
4 Q. General, this woman in the clip talking in the hospital, what
5 language did she speak in?
6 A. In Siptar language.
7 Q. Thank you. Were the wounded treated?
8 A. Yes. All of those wounded were hospitalised and treated.
9 Q. We saw remains of a bomb. Did you have any additional information
10 about it?
11 A. The remains of this missile that you saw, it wasn't that missile
12 that produced all that damage on the houses. There were a lot of such
13 missiles in my territory. These are anti-radar missiles, HAR. As for the
14 bombs that were dropped, we couldn't see their remains or traces except
15 for stabilizer fins. At the time, the bombs most often used were MK-82,
16 bombs that are about 225 kilos in weight, typical ones.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Who would be responsible for firing the missile we
18 could see?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] These are NATO missiles, NATO
20 equipment. I don't know from which country the planes that dropped the
21 bombs originated.
22 JUDGE BONOMY: I'm not asking you about the bomb. The anti-radar
23 missile, was that a NATO missile?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes. Those are missiles which,
25 if it is detected, or if it is believed, they react to infrared radiation.
1 It is sufficient to have a fire on the ground or sometimes it is
2 sufficient for an engine of a car, of a truck to be on for them to detect
3 it. And when they detect it, they fire the missiles and the missiles are
4 built in on the planes in such a way that sometimes they are launched
5 without the pilot doing anything if they detect any radar activity --
6 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Delic, the first word of your answer was enough
7 for the question. You appreciate that. It's a simple question, let's
8 have simple answers, we're simple-minded people.
9 Please proceed, Mr. Cepic.
10 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
11 Q. [Interpretation] General, do you know where the village is
12 Dusanovo is located?
13 A. Yes. The village of Dusanovo used to be and nowadays still is a
14 suburb of Prizren. It is linked to Prizren and one cannot see where
15 Dusanovo ends and Prizren begins nowadays.
16 Q. Thank you.
17 JUDGE BONOMY: You've now lost me completely. I thought we were
18 talking about Nogavac. Have we moved from that?
19 MR. CEPIC: I'm sorry, Your Honour.
20 JUDGE BONOMY: I thought you were challenging the evidence of
21 Isuf Zhuniqi and that seemed very important, but we're talking about a
22 different area being bombed, are we, from the one that he claimed he saw
23 Serb fighters -- Yugoslav fighters dealing with?
24 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
25 JUDGE BONOMY: Well, are we? Are we dealing with something
2 MR. CEPIC: This is something different --
3 JUDGE BONOMY: Yeah, okay, I've lost the way somewhere. Sorry.
4 It must be a lapse of concentration.
5 MR. CEPIC: I just -- I just started the new topic related to
6 village Dusanovo in the suburb of Prizren because I --
7 JUDGE BONOMY: Sorry, so that's separate. The film we saw was of
8 where? Nogavac?
9 MR. CEPIC: Nogavac village.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: That's fine. I haven't lost --
11 MR. CEPIC: I'm sorry for --
12 JUDGE BONOMY: No, no, I haven't lost the place. Thank you.
13 MR. CEPIC: I'm sorry, probably I made confusion. This video, as
14 I said, is related to village of Nogavac.
15 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
16 [Trial Chamber confers]
17 JUDGE BONOMY: Please continue, Mr. Cepic.
18 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
19 [Defence counsel confer]
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Please continue, Mr. Cepic.
21 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
22 Q. [Interpretation] General, now let us return to the village of
23 Dusanovo; you said it was a suburb of Prizren. Tell me, please, in the
24 beginning of the war, in late March, were your forces, or rather, your
25 tanks in that settlement?
1 A. Based on what I said previously, you could see that my tanks were
2 deployed from the 25th until the 27th or 28th inclusive in that area. And
3 following that, they were deployed in Malisevo. In Prizren, in the sector
4 of an agricultural estate Landovica, I had two tanks that were out of
5 order, so there was no way my tanks could have been in Dusanovo.
6 Q. Would you please explain whether you had a tank in Dusanovo.
7 A. Not a single tank of mine was in Dusanovo; however, I had two
8 tanks in the sector of an agricultural estate Landovica, which is some 2
9 kilometres from Dusanovo.
10 Q. Were those functioning, operational, tanks?
11 A. Those tanks were out of order when it comes to combat use, but
12 they were functioning in the sense that they were operational. They could
13 not be used in combat because their aim mechanisms were at the time being
14 repaired in Cacak, [indiscernible] equipment.
15 Q. General, in late March of 1999, did your forces by any chance
16 conduct a search operation in the village of Dusanovo?
17 A. As far as I know, there was no need to conduct such a search
18 operation in that village and no unit of mine was issued with such a task.
19 My units were located either in a border belt and then some units that we
20 mentioned earlier were in the area towards Malisevo. Upon return from
21 Malisevo, all units were deployed in the border belt defending the state
22 border until the end of the war.
23 Q. General, Krasniqi Rexhep in his testimony in the second paragraph
24 of his statement said that in the factory where he worked which was called
25 Pretext [phoen] in Prizren - I'm quoting - there was no less than 50 tanks
1 concealed and artillery pieces of 105-millimetres. This is what he said
2 in his statement. Could this be true?
3 A. No, this cannot be true because I had a total of 31 combat tanks,
4 out of which two were out of order, as I have told you, and were located
5 in that sector throughout that entire period. There was another tank or
6 two being repaired in Cacak at the time, and not a single tank of mine
7 ever entered the compound of that factory called Perlunka [phoen]. As for
8 the artillery, my unit never had these howitzers of 105 millimetres.
9 Q. Thank you, General. There's --
10 JUDGE BONOMY: Was the evidence of Rexhep that the 50 included the
11 artillery pieces or it was 50 tanks plus artillery pieces?
12 MR. CEPIC: If you have just one minute, please, Your Honour, just
13 to find the statement, second paragraph in statement.
14 I've just received information from my learned friend Mr. Zecevic
15 and he told me that 50 tanks plus artillery.
16 JUDGE BONOMY: Very well. Please continue.
17 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
18 Q. [Interpretation] General, that same witness said that on the 28th
19 of March, 1999, he saw 50 to 60 tanks in Dusanovo. I would like to know
20 in the area of Prizren and the surrounding area, was there another unit?
21 Was there another military formation there?
22 A. No, neither before the war or during the war was there any other
23 unit except for my unit which had tanks. I have already told you how many
24 tanks I had, and I have also told you what tasks those tanks implemented.
25 MR. CEPIC: Just a reference for transcript, exhibit number for
1 the statement, witness statement, of Mr. Krasniqi Rexhep is P2378.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.
3 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
4 Q. [Interpretation] General, Suva Reka, on the 25th of March in the
5 morning, did your forces surround the settlement of Suva Reka?
6 A. No, they did not surround Suva Reka. I don't see the point of
7 that. My forces passed through sometime between 4.00 until 4.30, they
8 passed through Suva Reka until they reached the wine cellar of Metohija
9 Vino or bus station, and then they continued on towards the village of
10 Rastane, that village is located to the west of Suva Reka and is almost
11 linked to Suva Reka.
12 Q. Were there any units of the Army of Yugoslavia in Suva Reka?
13 A. No. There is no garrison in Suva Reka and there have never been
14 any army units there.
15 Q. General, we have heard here in the courtroom some claims that
16 mosques in Suva Reka, Celine, Rogovo, Bela Crkva, Brestovac, Velika Krusa,
17 Vlastica, Landovica, and Djakovica were destroyed. Did your forces
18 destroy any of these mosques?
19 A. Yes, my forces opened fire at the mosque in Landovica; as for
20 other mosques, the answer is no. This instance when they opened fire took
21 place on the 26th of March; however, the mosque was not destroyed, rather,
22 just the minaret from which they had opened fire on the army. On that day
23 in Landovica two soldiers were killed, one soldier was wounded, and we had
24 to pull out the wounded soldier to treat him and we also had to retrieve
25 the bodies of the dead soldiers. It wasn't possible to do that due to the
1 fire that was opened from the mosque.
2 JUDGE BONOMY: If you can find a suitable place to interrupt,
3 Mr. Cepic.
4 MR. CEPIC: Thank you, Your Honour. I think that is right now.
5 JUDGE BONOMY: All right.
6 Mr. Delic, that's all we can do for today and also all we can do
7 for this week, and it will be Tuesday before we resume, so you will have
8 to come back then to continue your evidence. That will be at 2.15 on
9 Tuesday, unless between now and then something changes and we can revert
10 to the morning, but the arrangement is 2.15. So please be back in time to
11 take up your evidence again, then, on Tuesday.
12 Meanwhile, as you know the drill, you've been here before, it's
13 vital to have no any communication with anyone, no matter what position
14 they have, connection with you, whatever, about the evidence in the case.
15 You must keep off that subject completely and deal with other things.
16 Now could you please leave the courtroom with the usher and we'll
17 see you at 2.15 on Tuesday.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
19 [The witness stands down]
20 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 4.00 p.m.,
21 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 4th day of
22 December, 2007, at 2.15 p.m.