Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 13671

1 Monday, 30 October 2006

2 [Open session]

3 [The accused entered court]

4 [The accused Sljivancanin takes the stand]

5 --- Upon commencing at 2.20 p.m.

6 JUDGE PARKER: Good afternoon. We're ready to continue with the

7 evidence of Mr. Sljivancanin.

8 I would remind you, Mr. Sljivancanin, of the affirmation that you

9 made at the beginning of your evidence which still applies.

10 Mr. Lukic.


12 [Witness answered through interpreter]

13 Examination by Mr. Lukic: [Continued]

14 Q. Good afternoon, Your Honours. Good afternoon to all the

15 participants in these proceedings.

16 Mr. Sljivancanin, good afternoon.

17 A. Good afternoon.

18 Q. If you remember correctly, on Friday, if I can put it that way, we

19 sort of rounded off your testimony with the end of your stay in Vukovar,

20 so I would actually like to add a few questions to that very shortly.

21 Do you remember when you returned from Vukovar? Did you return

22 together with your unit and if so, do you remember the date?

23 A. I remember it was a Sunday and the date was the 24th of November,

24 1991. I returned around 2200 hours to Belgrade.

25 Q. Now we are going to look at a few more documents. These are your

Page 13672

1 reports. So we're going to comment on those reports. Before that, we

2 spoke about your reports generally and we looked at them too. How often

3 did you send reports from the Vukovar front that went to the assistant for

4 security at the SSNO and to the security administration? How often were

5 these reports written?

6 A. These reports were written or sent sometimes every three days,

7 sometimes every other day, depending on the information gathered and the

8 needs involved in terms of my reporting.

9 Q. On Friday, when you described that telephone conversation with the

10 security administration in the evening of the 20th of November, you

11 testified about that. In relation to that oral conversation, did you

12 write a written report about that or not?

13 A. The day I testified, you interrupted me. After the TV programme

14 was over, I went to the premises where the security organ was and I wrote

15 a report regarding security which I sent on the 21st of November to

16 Belgrade. In that report, as far as I can remember, I briefly described

17 what I did or, rather, what the security organs did, and I also wrote that

18 part of the suspects, the crime suspects that were brought to the barracks

19 were taken over by the government of Slavonia, Baranja and Western Srem.

20 Q. Thank you.

21 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, now, I would like to

22 look at two or three documents. Could two of them go -- be dealt with in

23 private session because a witness is being referred to that requires

24 private session. So could we please just deal with that in private

25 session?

Page 13673

1 JUDGE PARKER: Private.

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Page 13674

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22 [Open session]

23 THE REGISTRAR: We are in open session, Your Honours.

24 JUDGE PARKER: We're confused, Mr. Lukic, whether the document

25 should be under seal or in public. You dealt with it in private but the

Page 13675

1 content doesn't seem to be ...

2 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I'm afraid -- well, perhaps we could

3 wait for the break and then I will check. I'm afraid that when we

4 questioned a certain witness during our cross-examination that we asked

5 him about certain facts from this document, so in that sense, perhaps it

6 should be under seal because that was in public session. So perhaps --

7 but if you like, I can check that part of the transcript during the break

8 and then I can come back to you with that.

9 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you. We will just leave that for the moment,

10 then.

11 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] The next document is a document

12 marked -- I mean from the 65 ter list, it is 15, so it can be dealt with

13 in public; 3D050066. It is a document that is entitled "Use of Units of

14 the Military Police in Carrying Out Combat Activities," dated the 10th of

15 December, 1991.

16 Q. Mr. Sljivancanin, just in a word or two, not to analyse the

17 document, who is the author of this document and who was it sent to and

18 for what purpose?

19 A. I am the author of this document as well. After returning --

20 after the units returned from carrying out their mission in Vukovar, it

21 says here, on the 10th of December, 1991, at the request of the chief of

22 the security administration, I wrote my own positions and views with

23 regard to using the units of the military police in combat activities and

24 my proposals as to what should be done.

25 Q. That does belong to the duties of the security organs, using the

Page 13676

1 military police and proposing measures for using the military police;

2 right?

3 A. That is one of the tasks involved in the specialist direction of

4 the military police and of security organs.

5 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can we get a number for this document,

6 please.

7 JUDGE PARKER: It will be received.

8 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit 841, Your Honours.

9 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] The last document that I wish to

10 analyse now -- again, for a moment, I would like to move into private

11 session, and then we are going to take a position as to whether this

12 document can later be exhibited in public because of part of its content.

13 This is a document that is also from the 65 ter list and I think it is

14 number 16. It's the document numbered 3D050070. It is a document also

15 addressed to the security administration. It is entitled, "The Course of

16 Combat Activities in the Fighting for Vukovar." The date is the 10th of

17 December, 1991.

18 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction: "The Liberation of

19 Vukovar."

20 Interpreter's note: We do not have any of these documents.

21 JUDGE PARKER: Private.

22 [Private session]

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Page 13677











11 Page 13677 redacted. Private session.















Page 13678

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7 [Open session]

8 THE REGISTRAR: We are back in open session, Your Honours.

9 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.

10 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] During the break, I'm going to check

11 this out and I'm also going to consult Mr. Moore to see what his position

12 is regarding these documents.

13 Q. Mr. Sljivancanin, let's move on to another subject and then let's

14 draw this to a close. You heard the testimony of Mrs. Florence Hartmann;

15 there's no problem mentioning her name now. Were you in Vukovar in 1992?

16 And did you talk to her? And why did you go to Vukovar then? You

17 remember what her evidence was.

18 A. I heard here the testimony of Madam Florence Hartmann, and, to

19 tell you the truth, I was surprised. I was in Vukovar in 1991 but not in

20 order to celebrate. I went to pay my respects to the victims, especially

21 two young men who got killed as they were helping me to get out the body

22 of my late driver, Popovic. And I went straight to the cemetery in

23 Vukovar. I did not meet with anyone, but I believe that I would have

24 remembered the lady, had I met her. I first saw her here in this

25 courtroom, and before that I saw her once on television.

Page 13679

1 I read the words that she said here in her notebook. It is

2 correct that I said then that "This is Yugoslavia and this is Montenegro,"

3 when I made a statement for Radio Vukovar, because many were provoking me

4 and asking me how I could come without a passport. I never had a passport

5 and I did not have it even when I was brought to The Hague. I believe

6 that she recorded these words in her notebook from that statement because

7 it was broadcast several times on that day in Vukovar.

8 Q. In view of the documents that we have seen here before this Court,

9 obviously, towards the end of 1992, the media started talking about the

10 discovery of the mass grave at Ovcara. When did you hear about this event

11 and about the story about Ovcara, and what was your position at that time

12 when you heard about it?

13 A. Regarding your first question, I forgot. At that time, I had

14 collected some money and I took it to the children of these killed people

15 who were salvaging my driver, and that was one of the principal reasons

16 why I was going to Vukovar at that time.

17 As regards your second question which you have just put to me, the

18 media at the time carried a lot of misinformation. In fact, I did not

19 read much of the press at the time, especially not the so-called yellow

20 press. I did not believe that something of the kind could happen, nor

21 could have happened, nor did I know that anything of the kind had

22 happened. And, as sometime in 1993, I went to Podgorica, there was less

23 talk about it there. I actually did not believe the press, what was being

24 said in the papers, and I didn't pay much attention to it then.

25 Q. I shall now ask you something about the statements that you gave

Page 13680

1 to the security administration and before the military court. Please be

2 so kind as to give me brief answers so that we can go through this

3 quickly. Probably the OTP will have some other questions in that

4 connection and we shall leave that to them.

5 You were called - I believe that I can, in fact, be leading when

6 asking you this question - in February 1998 to the security

7 administration. My question is: When you went for that talk on the 14th

8 of February, were you told what the reason for your having been called to

9 that talk was?

10 A. In February 1998, I attended the National Defence School as a

11 trainee. It was Saturday; I remember that well. The chief of the centre

12 called me and he gave me the phone to talk to the Chief of Staff, General

13 Perisic. So I took it and I called him and he said that I was to go to

14 the chief of security, Aca Dmitrijevic, the chief in the security

15 administration. I didn't know why.

16 When I arrived there, General Aca Dmitrijevic told me that we were

17 to talk about the events in Vukovar, actually, what I knew at that point

18 in time about Vukovar. And he assigned Colonel Branko Gajic to talk to me

19 and he conducted this interview with me all day, from 11.00 a.m. to,

20 perhaps, 1900 hours. I cannot remember with precision, but it took the

21 whole day. That, I know for a fact.

22 I asked him to give me the reports that I was writing at the time

23 and had written prior to that, because I could not recall all the details,

24 or to let me go and find the notebook of mine. Mr. Gajic told me that it

25 wasn't necessary; that it was important that I tell him what I knew about

Page 13681

1 it. And he asked me not to make any references to any names, except

2 Mr. Mrksic, Mr. Radic and me, myself, and some people that were there

3 working with me, because they were referred to in the indictment of the

4 Tribunal at The Hague, and that I should not be calling out any other

5 names.

6 Q. On that occasion, were you read the indictment of the OTP of the

7 Tribunal at The Hague?

8 A. No, it was not.

9 Q. Were you presented at that time any material from that period -

10 any orders, reports, working diaries, notebooks, statements by persons?

11 A. No, nothing of the kind was presented to me, although I asked them

12 to give me at least a couple of my own documents that I had written in

13 order for me to remember certain things. But I was given no material.

14 Q. Was it made possible for you to consult any attorney, any lawyer,

15 at that time in connection with the topics that were being discussed?

16 A. No, it was not. I said, the moment I arrived there for talks, we

17 started and I had to stay there until 7.00 p.m. And actually, I said much

18 more than is contained in this official memorandum which was dictated by

19 an official and he actually dictated more things that he wanted to go into

20 that statement than my very words.

21 Q. Upon finishing that conversation, were you given a copy of the

22 statement for you to keep?

23 A. No. No statement was given to me. That statement was not given

24 to me. In fact, after I finished -- I had finished my account, we had a

25 bit of an argument, so to speak, because I said that I wouldn't go on

Page 13682

1 talking anymore as the gentleman was insisting on putting things down the

2 way he saw fit, without any references to any names that were crucial in

3 certain terms; people from the security administration who had been coming

4 to Vukovar and that of Mr. Aca Vasiljevic.

5 So I said that I was going to leave the office, that I was hungry,

6 that I could no longer listen to that. I told them, "Give me what you

7 have to sign," and I didn't even read, frankly speaking, what it was that

8 I was signing.

9 Q. Sometime in the winter of that year, you also were heard before

10 the military court in the capacity of witness, which statement will

11 probably be presented to you as well. Let me ask you a couple of

12 questions connected to that particular procedure.

13 First of all, on that occasion, as we can see from the transcript,

14 The Hague investigators, the OTP's investigators, were also there. Were

15 you handed the indictment of the Tribunal at The Hague?

16 A. I don't remember it having -- that it was handed over to me, the

17 indictment, that is. I remember that I received a summons for appearing

18 before the court and I arrived in the court. Having arrived there, I

19 waited for a while in the waiting room; then they ushered me in. I took

20 the stand and immediately the giving of my testimony started.

21 Q. You don't remember whether an indictment was given to you. Do you

22 remember whether the indictment was retold to you; and if so, were you

23 given any time to give it some thought prior to beginning to make your own

24 statement?

25 A. I believe that in the introductory remarks, when the judge was

Page 13683

1 introducing the case, he said that I had been summoned in connection with

2 The Hague indictment about events at Ovcara in 1991. I believe that that

3 is how he ushered in the case. And he said that people from the Tribunal

4 at The Hague were present and, as far as I can recall, they were sitting

5 to my right-hand side, three of them.

6 Then the questions immediately started, and I replied to the

7 questions being put to me by his honour, the judge, and I do not remember

8 any other details.

9 It goes without saying that what I was telling them, he then

10 retold -- re-dictated to the typist in his own words and he typed it down.

11 Q. On that day, before the examination, during the examination, did

12 you get from the examining magistrate any material associated with the

13 indictment, any document? Were you given or shown any document by anyone

14 when your statement was being taken?

15 A. No one gave me any materials or any documents associated with the

16 indictment.

17 Q. On that occasion, did anyone read you your rights as a person

18 accused before the Tribunal at The Hague, according to the Statute of this

19 Tribunal then?

20 A. No, no, there was no mention of it at all.

21 Q. Mr. Sljivancanin, when you stated your first views, so to speak,

22 on the indictment, which was in the summer, I believe, of 1993, do you --

23 2003 --

24 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not hear counsel, who could

25 kindly slow down.

Page 13684

1 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]

2 Q. -- were you given any documents? Do you remember that?

3 Would you repeat, sir, when you were giving -- when you were

4 stating -- making your plea as to your guilt before this Tribunal, do you

5 remember whether you got any accompanying/supporting material with the

6 indictment?

7 A. Yes, I remember that I did get such material. I was without

8 counsel then, so that people here in the courtroom actually gave it to me.

9 I do remember.

10 Q. Had you seen that material ever before?

11 A. I saw those materials for the first time when I arrived here.

12 Q. I'm drawing to a close my examination. I wanted us to go in

13 details through the specific paragraphs of the indictment, but I believe

14 that we have dealt with a lot of those through your testimony.

15 Mr. Sljivancanin, when you were stating your plea in connection

16 with this indictment of this Tribunal and before your first initial

17 appearance, and also later when the indictment was amended, you pled not

18 guilty. You are now speaking under oath and I am asking you, in

19 connection with just one topic, one subject, because I believe we have

20 dealt with the other topics so far.

21 You have read the indictment. You see that it is the contention

22 of the OTP that you are a participant in the joint criminal enterprise

23 with inter alia Mr. Mrksic and Radic and other known and unknown persons

24 whose goal was to persecute non-Serbs from the Vukovar Hospital after the

25 fall of Vukovar by way of murder and extermination. This is, of course, a

Page 13685

1 paraphrase but you know what my question is: Did you know of any

2 enterprise, of any agreement, to commit this crime as stated in the

3 indictment, and did you participate in it?

4 A. Many of these things in the indictment have been written

5 arbitrarily and as someone saw fit. First and foremost, I never

6 participated in any agreements or enterprises.

7 Mr. Mrksic was my superior and I had a professional position

8 vis-a-vis all the tasks that he gave me. He never issued me any order

9 which was in contravention of the law, nor did he ever require anything of

10 the kind from me. And then I would not have executed any order that would

11 have been outside the ambit of my duty.

12 Mr. Radic was a company commander and I saw him, I mean, tour the

13 company, the front line, several times, just as I did the other

14 commanders. I never issued him any orders, nor did he have any need to

15 associate with me in regard of any question. He had his own superior

16 commanding officers.

17 Q. Did you hear that such an agreement existed between any persons

18 while you were there in the territory of Vukovar for the commission of

19 such a crime?

20 A. I only heard about anything of the kind from this indictment that

21 I read here for the first time, and I know that there were never any such

22 agreements at that time. Had there been any such deals being made, we

23 would have taken measures to prevent them, certainly.

24 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I have finished with my examination.

25 Q. Mr. Sljivancanin, would you like to add something which you

Page 13686

1 believe I have, perhaps, omitted to ask and which you believe is of

2 importance and should be stated here before the Trial Chamber, and relates

3 to the events we discussed the last three days?

4 A. I should like to ask the Chamber, if it is necessary - and I am

5 endeavouring to be as brief as possible and not to tire everybody -

6 perhaps they will ask me something about what I wanted to say, so if I

7 could ask the Trial Chamber to ask me their questions, and if I feel that

8 I haven't been asked that crucial question, then I shall say it myself, by

9 your leave, Your Honours.

10 Q. You heard what Mr. Radic had to say to the Trial Chamber prior to

11 redirect, but I should like to ask you to say what it is that you want to

12 say before this Tribunal. Of course, they will be topics that will be the

13 subject of redirect and cross-examination as well.

14 A. If there is something that I wish to say, this is something which

15 distresses me the most as a human being; the fact that I should feature in

16 this kind of an indictment, and that the crime which was conceived of, as

17 I said in my introductory remarks before this august Chamber, by non-human

18 beings, by cowards and by [Realtime transcript read in error "my"]

19 psychopaths in order to tarnish the prestige and the dignity of all of us

20 who loved Yugoslavia and of all members of the Yugoslav Peoples' Army who

21 honourably discharged what they had pledged to, in order to inflict great

22 pain and suffering on the families of the victims.

23 Thinking whether I should take the stand, I decided that I,

24 indeed, should sit in this chair and say the truth about everything that I

25 know in order not to have the reputation and dignity of the honourable

Page 13687

1 members of the Yugoslav Peoples' Army tarnished, that of me, myself, and

2 that of my family; and also in order to respond to all those who have used

3 the media in a bid to present many things untruthfully; so that I could

4 tell what the truth is; and also, when it comes to the families of the

5 people who were unfortunately killed at Ovcara, to tell their families

6 what it is that I know and to try and, if at all possible, alleviate their

7 pain, to tell them what I know.

8 I am here. I have taken the stand. I am at your disposal.

9 Please ask me all and any questions. I will say everything that I know.

10 Q. Thank you.

11 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] On page 16, there is a correction,

12 line 16. The transcript says "my psychopaths" and, of course, the witness

13 has just said "psychopaths."

14 Thank you, Your Honours, I have finished with my

15 examination-in-chief at this point.

16 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Lukic.

17 Mr. Moore.

18 MR. MOORE: Your Honour, could I possibly ask the Court's

19 indulgence for 15 minutes, for the Court to rise for 15 minutes. It's for

20 the following reason:

21 Files have been prepared for cross-examination. There was a

22 typographical error, or errors, and I want to make absolutely certain that

23 it has been done properly so that when we commence - and I believe we may

24 commence in cross-examination on behalf of the Prosecution - sooner rather

25 than later, then there will not be the danger of any problems, and that

Page 13688

1 perhaps 15 minutes spent now will ensure that there will be no

2 difficulties later on.

3 JUDGE PARKER: You want this before we hear from Mr. Vasic and

4 Mr. Borovic.

5 MR. MOORE: I just wanted to make sure that if there was any

6 error, if there was any error, that it would be dealt with now when

7 there's cross-examination going on that does not relate to us. Otherwise,

8 it would be not desirable for documents to be in the wrong position.

9 [Trial Chamber confers]

10 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Vasic, is it your intention to put questions to

11 the witness? It is?

12 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Good afternoon. Indeed, it is. I

13 don't have too many questions, but yes, I will have questions.

14 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.

15 Mr. Borovic.

16 MR. BOROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours. I think I

17 will need about ten minutes, also. Thank you.

18 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you.

19 Mr. Moore, the members of the Chamber are not altogether clear

20 about your concern. In view of what Mr. Vasic and Mr. Borovic have said,

21 do you still feel the break now is important?

22 MR. MOORE: There are 32 documents that have been put into a file

23 and there are three other files. I want to make absolutely certain that

24 they are accurate. There have been problems with the machines upstairs in

25 relation to the documents going through for those files. I could leave

Page 13689

1 it, quite clearly, until the conclusion of Mr. Borovic's

2 cross-examination. Then I would hope we would have reached the break, but

3 we would not have the time to use -- to repair or to alter anything. I

4 would like to have the documents to start immediately because that way,

5 then, the cross-examination can flow without any fear of interruption. As

6 I said, the machine, unfortunately, has jumped at some paper and has

7 created problems.

8 JUDGE PARKER: We will take our first break now and resume at half

9 past 3.00, Mr. Moore.

10 --- Recess taken at 3.05 p.m.

11 --- On resuming at 3.30 p.m.

12 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Moore.

13 MR. MOORE: Your Honour, may I just thank the Court for the time.

14 We have the documents, and perhaps I prayed a little harder today than

15 normal, but they're all available.

16 JUDGE PARKER: If we've managed to get you to do that, we have

17 achieved a great deal in the interests of humanity, Mr. Moore.

18 Mr. Lukic.

19 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I conducted some checks but I can only

20 tell you about them in private session, about the documents that we spoke

21 of earlier.

22 [Private session]

23 (redacted)

24 (redacted)

25 (redacted)

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Page 13691

1 (redacted)

2 [Open session]

3 THE REGISTRAR: We are back in open session, Your Honours.

4 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.

5 Examination by Mr. Vasic:

6 Q. Good afternoon to everyone in the courtroom. Good afternoon, Your

7 Honours. Good afternoon, Mr. Sljivancanin. Witness, good afternoon.

8 I am going to ask you the same thing that Mr. Lukic asked you;

9 namely, to make a brief pause after my question and I will do the same

10 after your answer so that the interpretation service can interpret our

11 dialogue and so that everything can be recorded properly. Thank you.

12 First of all, I'd like to start with a topic where I think there

13 was a slip of the tongue in your evidence, and it has to do with Colonel

14 Pavkovic.

15 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Could we please see on our screens

16 Exhibit 404, which is the order that instructed Colonel Pavkovic to go to

17 Negoslavci.

18 Q. As we are waiting for this document, let me ask you: Do you know

19 that in 1991, during this period of time, what was the post held by

20 Colonel Pavkovic?

21 A. Colonel Nebojsa Pavkovic was Deputy Chief of Staff of the Federal

22 Secretary or Federal Minister.

23 Q. You said Federal Secretary of ...

24 A. National Defence.

25 Q. Thank you. Based on the order that we can see on our screens, it

Page 13692

1 was precisely the Federal Secretary who had sent Colonel Pavkovic to

2 Negoslavci, and in item 4 of this report -- of this order, it says that

3 Colonel Pavkovic is expected to send reports, observations, and proposals

4 to the cabinet of the Federal Secretary. Does this mean that Colonel

5 Pavkovic, at the time, was sent there as some kind of a supervisor,

6 somebody who is supposed to check how things were going, as a

7 representative of the Superior Command?

8 A. I know that Mr. Pavkovic was in Negoslavci throughout the entire

9 time; that he cooperated with Mr. Mrksic; and that very frequently he

10 acted as a sort of a supervisor, somebody who was there to control the

11 work of others. He was the only one authorised to give any sort of

12 criticism to Colonel Mrksic.

13 Q. Thank you. Given that Colonel Pavkovic had come from the Superior

14 Command, Colonel Mrksic was not his superior because that would have

15 violated the chain of command and the principle of singleness of command.

16 What Colonel Mrksic could do, though, was to entrust him with certain

17 tasks upon prior agreement with him.

18 A. Pursuant to the regulations that were in force in the Yugoslav

19 Peoples' Army at the time, since Pavkovic came from the Superior Command,

20 it is true that Mrksic was unable to issue any assignments to him.

21 However, they were able to carry out many assignments in cooperation, upon

22 prior agreement between the two of them. Naturally, there should have

23 been, perhaps, an instruction from the Federal Secretary or the Chief of

24 Staff of the Federal Secretary, and I had nothing to do with that. It was

25 completely outside of my responsibilities. But he could have supervised

Page 13693

1 how the implementation of these assignments was conducted.

2 Q. Thank you. While we're still dealing with Colonel Pavkovic, and

3 in relation to something you gave about here, namely, the evacuation of

4 the Vukovar Hospital, I would like to see Exhibit 314 on our screens,

5 please, page -- with ERN number 04687773.

6 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] While we're waiting, let me clarify.

7 This is an excerpt from the notes of Mr. Kypr, which was the notebook used

8 by Mr. Lukic yesterday. This is a different excerpt from that notebook.

9 No, that's not the right page. 04687773. This is an entry --

10 THE REGISTRAR: I apologise, but Exhibit 314 has only got one page

11 and it's the one currently displayed on the screens.

12 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] In that case, I need to apologise. I

13 was given a wrong reference. Just a minute, please. I need to verify the

14 number under which this was filed; namely, the diary of Mr. Kypr.

15 While we're looking for the number, let me just explain what this

16 concerns. This is an entry made by Mr. Kypr - the exhibit number is 344,

17 I apologise - namely, this is an entry about Colonel Pavkovic saying that

18 the wounded members of paramilitary formations need to remain here and

19 that it was ultimately resolved with General Raseta.

20 This page is going to come up. This is page 04687773. Can we

21 please zoom in on the first portion.

22 Q. Mr. Sljivancanin, do you see this entry at the very beginning of

23 the page?

24 A. I see the page but I can't read anything on it, nor do I

25 understand what's written on it.

Page 13694

1 Q. I'm going to try and read this out and then you can follow.

2 "The wounded members of paramilitary formations need to remain

3 here. This was definitely resolved with General Raseta."

4 Do you know anything about the conversations between General

5 Raseta and Colonel Pavkovic regarding this?

6 A. At the time Colonel Pavkovic never informed me, nor did he tell me

7 about any conversations he had with anyone else, because he was from the

8 Superior Command. Now, as to whether he informed Colonel Mrksic about

9 this or not, I don't know. You need to ask the two of them about that.

10 Now, another matter that has to do with the chain of command and

11 with relations that existed between them, item 35 of the rules of service

12 in the armed forces specifies that, in a particular area or in a garrison

13 or in the barracks, the most senior officer is the one so designated by

14 the commander.

15 If Colonel Mrksic had received an order, which I didn't see, from

16 the commander of the Military District about him being the commander,

17 then, in terms of discipline, he was able to specify certain rules for

18 everyone, including Colonel Pavkovic. I know for a fact that Colonel

19 Pavkovic frequently contacted the Chief of Staff, the chef du cabinet, of

20 the Federal Secretary and some generals from the General Staff. And as

21 for what kind of orders and assignments he received from them, I know

22 nothing about that.

23 Q. Thank you. Now I'd like to turn to another topic which, once

24 again, has to do with the evidence you gave; namely, when you mentioned

25 that the commissioner of the Croatian government for Vukovar called the

Page 13695

1 command in Negoslavci at one point in time, and that a meeting with

2 Colonel Mrksic was scheduled for the following day, in the afternoon, and

3 that you were informed of the substance of these talks; namely, the

4 conditions of surrender which Colonel Mrksic, in your words, conveyed to

5 the Croatian government commissioner.

6 I'd like to know whether these conditions of surrender pertained

7 to the entire paramilitary forces of Croatia, those which were in the

8 inner urban area, including Borovo Naselje, since Mitnica had been cut off

9 the minute the units of the JNA took that area.

10 A. I know for a fact that Colonel Mrksic spoke sometime in the

11 morning, at around 9.00, or perhaps even earlier, at 8.00. At any rate,

12 it was not yet 10.00 in the morning. I know that he talked to Mr. Vidic

13 and that he dictated to him very specific conditions for surrender. I was

14 present when they talked. I listened to that conversation.

15 Later on, Mr. Mrksic said that he hesitated and that he wasn't

16 sure that everybody would agree to those conditions and that he would let

17 him know later on. I know that this pertained to the forces which were in

18 the central area of Vukovar and in the area towards the hospital. I can't

19 be sure that Borovo Naselje was included because I didn't listen on.

20 Colonel Mrksic had the phone in his hands. But I remember when Colonel

21 Mrksic said that all those with weapons need to go to the stadium - and I

22 told you that I could point that stadium out - and that if they

23 surrendered and dropped their weapons, not a hair would be harmed on their

24 heads. And as far as I remember, at least not to my knowledge, there were

25 no further contacts with Marin Vidic. He did not call later on, and if I

Page 13696

1 am mistaken, then Colonel Mrksic can tell you what he knows.

2 Q. We heard from many witnesses here about what happened after

3 members of these paramilitary formations went to the hospital; namely,

4 some went to the hospital and some left Vukovar. I'd like to know whether

5 you know when the commander of the Vukovar defence, called Mladi Jastreb,

6 left Vukovar?

7 A. I know based on my talks with Mrs. Vesna Bosanac and Mr. Marin

8 Vidic. I inquired, I said that I wanted to meet those people because I

9 knew that they had been officers of the Yugoslav Peoples' Army, and I

10 wanted to see what was it that prompted them to fire at each other and to

11 kill our own soldiers, those that we had trained together with until

12 recently. And this is what Mrs. Vesna Bosanac told me: "You will never

13 find the two of them. They had escaped from Vukovar five days ago. Don't

14 look for them. The only ones who remained faithful to this town and to

15 these people are Marin Vidic and myself. There are others as well who

16 didn't manage to flee. They changed their clothes and they hid in the

17 hospital. I will point out those people to you. And as for when he left,

18 I truly don't know that."

19 Later on, in the evening, Marin Vidic, when talking, confirmed the

20 same thing that Mrs. Vesna Bosanac said. And, coincidently, as I have

21 quite a lot of time available to me here in prison, I frequently watch

22 Croatian television; they have good programmes and I understand the

23 language. And last year, I watched a TV programme - it was the

24 anniversary of the liberation of Vukovar - and there were two men in that

25 programme, including some other people who wrote books about Vukovar, and

Page 13697

1 these same questions were put to both of these men as to when they had

2 left Vukovar and why. This gentleman, who was nicknamed Mladi Jastreb, if

3 I can say so, was barely able to stutter that he had left before the 17th,

4 but he wouldn't give the precise date as to when he had left. That's all

5 I know.

6 Q. Thank you. You said that you talked to Marin Vidic and Vesna

7 Bosanac. Are you familiar with the details surrounding the attempt of

8 Marin Vidic to negotiate the surrender with Goran Hadzic, who, at the

9 time, was the Prime Minister of Eastern Slavonia, Baranja and Western

10 Srem, and immediately prior to the fall of Vukovar, which is to say, from

11 the 15th to the 18th of November?

12 A. When I talked to Mr. Marin Vidic, he was a man prepared to say

13 many a thing. We had come to a sort of meeting of minds, to a common

14 position; namely, we thought -- both thought that it was ugly that things

15 should have come to that point where combat operations had to be carried

16 out. And I believe I think -- I remember that there was this attempt, but

17 the meeting did not come about. I cannot remember why not. But he gave

18 me three letters which he had written to the president of -- the then

19 President of the Republic of Croatia, Mr. Franjo Tudjman, and I submitted

20 those letters to the security administration.

21 In these letters, he described in detail that it was not good that

22 there should have been armed combat. He wrote how a lieutenant of the

23 Yugoslav Peoples' Army had been killed who had come to a session of the

24 municipality, the municipal assembly of Vukovar. He was an assemblyman

25 and he came to this assembly session in Vukovar in 1991, after which

Page 13698

1 session he was treacherously killed. He told me the following: In his

2 view, the army had also done wrong, and it was wrong, as he put it, three

3 times.

4 The first time was in August, in the month of August, when the

5 army entered the city and was able to control the city and all of a

6 sudden, it just withdrew. I wasn't there then. I don't know why it

7 withdrew.

8 The second time it was remiss was between the -- was the period

9 between the 2nd and 10th of October, when they felt that a disciplined and

10 strong unit was there; and the minute they wanted to lay down their arms,

11 the army stopped. I remember that -- I remember that. And we stopped

12 because we had received orders to the effect that all combat operations

13 were to cease, that the convoy be let into Vukovar. And we had no combat

14 operations, we did not conduct anything until the 20th.

15 The third time it was wrong, he said, was when the army stopped,

16 on the 10th of November, having reach Milovo Brdo. Then, again, they also

17 wanted to lay down their arms but we stopped because we had no troops,

18 because the reserve force had left. We had discharged many volunteers for

19 lack of discipline and we were afraid lest we be surrounded.

20 And this is what the Mr. Marin Vidic personally told me in this

21 talk that we conducted. I can say here publicly that he treated me very

22 fair and that the conversation that we had was a very correct one.

23 Also, he told me this, when I asked him, "Why did you burn our

24 soldiers?" And I have to say to this distinguished and honourable Chamber

25 that, of the ten people who went missing and we couldn't find, I only

Page 13699

1 found five burned bodies, their five bodies, in the street of Sremski

2 Boraca. They also showed me six mounds. I asked Mr. Vidic why these

3 bodies had been burned, and he told me this: At a certain meeting,

4 President Tudjman had told them that the then well-known Serbian

5 nationalist Vuk Draskovic had said that the borders of Serbia would be

6 where Serb graves are, and it was ordered that they should not be,

7 therefore, buried but burned. I was really surprised by that, but I

8 presumed that he was telling the truth. And he gave me his log, his

9 diary, in which he had written that down, which diary I then handed over

10 to the security administration.

11 Q. Please tell me, on that occasion, did he tell you that the session

12 of the government of the Republic of Croatia discussed, on the 17th of

13 November, whether to allow Mr. Vidic to negotiate with Goran Hadzic or

14 not? Did he tell you anything about that particular issue?

15 A. At that time he had numerous objections levelled at the leadership

16 and top of the Croatian government and authorities. He had the most

17 criticism for Mr. Tudjman.

18 I cannot remember all the details, but I know that he had a lot of

19 objections levelled against the conduct of the Croatian leadership, and,

20 as he put it, then he was in favour of a peaceful coexistence of all the

21 people who were living in Vukovar then. This is what he told me and I

22 believe that that is also what he meant, that he really believed in that.

23 Q. Thank you. In your testimony, we saw some footage in which you

24 also touched upon the question of the relationship of the JNA vis-a-vis

25 the civilians - women, children, and the elderly - and, in fact, the

Page 13700

1 desire of the JNA for the women, children, and the elderly to be taken out

2 of Vukovar already in October 1991.

3 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] I should now like to ask that we take

4 a look at video 1D42, the mark it bears. It is from a Croatian television

5 programme called Latinica.

6 We have a technical glitch. Just a minute. Obviously this is a

7 major technical problem, or at least more than I thought. Let us go to

8 another topic and hopefully we shall be able to see this video a bit

9 later.

10 Q. In the examination-in-chief, you spoke about the establishment of

11 the Operations Group South --

12 [Videotape played]

13 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I started dealing with

14 another topic but then the video started. Obviously, we can't continue

15 with that so I'll resume this subject.

16 Q. So you spoke about Operations Group South and you presented your

17 position as part of the units which were at the Vukovar front line at that

18 time. I should like to know whether you were there during the change-over

19 of duty between the command of the Operations Group command -- the

20 Operations Group South command, led by Bajo Bojat, and the command of the

21 Guards Motorised Brigade, headed by Commander Milan Mrksic, because, in

22 the war log, the entry for the 8th of October states that there, indeed,

23 was such a change-over of duty.

24 A. I remember that the -- I said that I remember that for a while the

25 commander was Bajo Bojat and the Chief of Staff was Ljubicic, and that

Page 13701

1 they were accommodated in a house on the outskirts of Negoslavci, in the

2 direction of Vukovar, closer to there.

3 In the initial days of the combat operations, I very often was, as

4 I have said, on the front line because of my operational duties, and I

5 really do not remember having attended such a meeting. I cannot recall

6 one. Perhaps one was held. If it is entered in the war log, it probably

7 took place, but I cannot remember having attended it.

8 What I do remember is that on one occasion I attended a meeting

9 when General Zivota Panic came, when I was supposed to bring Lieutenant

10 Colonel Novakovic from the barracks in order for them to explain to him

11 that he was no longer independent but shall be subordinated to Commander

12 Mrksic. But I didn't manage to do that and General Panic later just

13 removed that lieutenant colonel, so to speak, from that zone. This is

14 what I remember.

15 Q. Thank you. Do you remember whether certain chiefs of the services

16 and branches within the command of the Guards Brigade were issued orders

17 that they would be thereafter chiefs of the services and branches of the

18 Operations Group, or was this dealt with by a change-over document? What

19 do you know about this?

20 A. What I know is that we worked the most and devoted the most

21 attention to the discharge of the task of lifting the blockade on the

22 barracks and the disarming of the paramilitary units in the city of

23 Vukovar, and that task, as you can see, by the orders and commands here,

24 was carried out by the Guards Brigade in conjunction with the Territorial

25 Defence detachment of Vukovar.

Page 13702

1 I don't know whether the other chiefs had any powers, and what

2 powers they had. They knew what their duty and work was. But I never

3 received any orders, nor did I know that I was the chief of security of

4 Operations Group South. And let me emphasise, also, according to the

5 rules of service, the work of security organs does not involve specialised

6 direction in ad hoc formations, in terms of the work of security organs.

7 Q. Tell me, from what we hear now, it emanates that -- it stems that

8 the chief of the security organ in the Guards Brigade only dealt with

9 units of the Guards Brigade. Who discharged this work in other units

10 which were part of the Operations Group South? And where was the

11 singleness of control and command established with these units in terms of

12 the specialised direction of security organs; at which level, namely?

13 A. Organs of security are not units; these are specialised command

14 organs, organs of the command. The organ of security of the brigade is

15 subordinated to the commander of the brigade. I tried to familiarise

16 myself with the entire security situation in the zone of operations or

17 zone of responsibility, what you will, of the Guards Motorised Brigade.

18 Every chief of security of other units also had to be informed and had to

19 inform their commanders, and, according to the specialised technical line

20 of duty, they were to be issued certain tasks in terms of

21 counter-intelligence, estimates, evaluations, and their work from -- would

22 be directed by the organs of the Superior Command in terms of

23 counter-intelligence work.

24 Next, units which were deployed, which came to the area of

25 Vukovar, changed very quickly; units from the 1st Military District,

Page 13703

1 namely. I'm talking about the 453rd Mechanised Brigade. It was,

2 therefore, a very short stint. The Nubia -- the Podunavska Brigade, only

3 for 10 days or so; the 20th Partisan Brigade, some 10 to 20 days or so;

4 and then the 80th Motorised Brigade came which was to inherit that zone

5 from us.

6 It was not -- there was no possibility for establishing any

7 counter-intelligence work and to direct it in any specialised or technical

8 manner with such organs. They are not separate organs which are something

9 separate from the line of duty of their particular unit. This is what I

10 know.

11 Q. Does this mean that these units which were outside the Guards

12 Brigade, were, in fact, not covered by counter-intelligence in this period

13 during which there was no, as you call it, specialist direction line?

14 Does that mean that?

15 A. No, that does not mean that. It means that it was the territory

16 of the 1st Military District on which they probably had also certain

17 counter-intelligence groups, so to call them. Evidence about that has

18 been given here by Dragoljub Vukosavljevic, the chief of security of the

19 80th Motorised Brigade, who said that he had met some people from those

20 groups. He said so here.

21 But throughout my stay in that terrain, I never met those people

22 or such people, except on the 19th, in the evening, with those who had

23 come there with permission to perform specific tasks. They had specialist

24 direction from their own superior security organs.

25 Q. You mean those officers from the security administration and from

Page 13704

1 the security department of the 1st Military District, I assume?

2 A. I primarily mean the professional organs of security that from the

3 1st Military District that were somewhere in the area of Sid. I don't

4 know where they were exactly.

5 Q. Did you have any knowledge whatsoever about these groups that came

6 from Sid? We heard that from Witness Vukosavljevic without any doubt.

7 They came to the Vukovar front. How long did they stay? What were their

8 tasks? Or did you not know anything about this?

9 A. We did our best to establish full security in the zone of activity

10 of the Guards Brigade; however, you cannot have policemen at every corner

11 and you cannot have them monitoring who is moving about where. Different

12 people could have come as civilians, whatever. No one reported to me and

13 I did not have any knowledge of any one of my security organs having any

14 kind of contact with such persons during our stay in that area.

15 Q. Tell me, according to the rules of your profession, an officer who

16 comes from a counter-intelligence group, would he have to report to the

17 security organ on the territory to which he came?

18 A. I have already said that this was the territory controlled by

19 units of the 1st Military District. That was their territorial

20 jurisdiction. We came for a concrete task and that task of ours was the

21 task of the Guards Brigade; namely, to deblock the barracks and to disarm

22 paramilitary formations in the town of Vukovar. It was not their duty to

23 report to us and to tell us what they were doing in the field of

24 counter-intelligence, nor were they supposed to report to me, as the chief

25 of security of a tactical unit, as the brigade was.

Page 13705

1 Q. Just one more question in relation to this: The members of these

2 counter-intelligence groups, are they also subordinated to the security

3 administration? Is the security administration actually the organ which

4 secures this professional unity in terms of the work of all organs?

5 A. The security administration gave professional specialist direction

6 to the organs of the 1st Military District. The chief of security of the

7 1st Military District had, within his composition, intelligence groups, as

8 far as I know. Now, how he directed them, how he guided them, how they

9 worked, I really cannot say. I don't know.

10 Q. Do you know what kind of security organs existed in the units of

11 the Territorial Defence of Vukovar, in the Leva Supoderica unit? Do you

12 have any knowledge about that, whether the security organs had a network

13 from these units?

14 A. If I'm supposed to give any answers regarding the method of work

15 of security organs, could we please move into private session.

16 Q. By all means.

17 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I would kindly ask that

18 we move into private session, please.

19 JUDGE PARKER: Private.

20 [Private session]

21 (redacted)

22 (redacted)

23 (redacted)

24 (redacted)

25 (redacted)

Page 13706











11 Pages 13706-13707 redacted. Private session.















Page 13708

1 (redacted)

2 (redacted)

3 (redacted)

4 [Open session]

5 THE REGISTRAR: We are back in open session, Your Honour.

6 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.

7 Q. As for these problems of functioning, did Aca Vasiljevic, the then

8 chief of the security administration, did he know about these problems?

9 And you told us about when he came there. Was he aware of the situation?

10 Did he know what the security situation was, or rather, the situation with

11 the security organs in this area?

12 A. When Aca Vasiljevic stayed in Vukovar, he talked to me only about

13 security and the tasks of the security organs in the Guards Brigade, and

14 he gave me advice as to what it was that I should do and how I could best

15 do it. We never talked about any kind of security problems of other

16 units, nor did I ask him anything about it or about the staffs of the

17 Territorial Defence.

18 Q. Thank you. During the examination-in-chief, you mentioned a

19 telegram that you got, and you said that you talked to Mr. Vasiljevic

20 about this telegram on the 19th, after midnight, when he came to

21 Negoslavci, the house that you were staying at. On that occasion, did you

22 get any instructions from him as to where you should provide security for

23 those 2.000 persons for the exchange?

24 A. As far as I remember, I said then to Mr. Vasiljevic that we

25 provided the kind of security that we could provide then for the people

Page 13709

1 who surrendered at Mitnica, and that it would be very difficult to provide

2 security for that many people. He said to me, "Sljivancanin, I sent

3 professional people who know what the tasks are. You are supposed to

4 cooperate with them. They have been through thick and thin. Do your best

5 to carry this task out together."

6 He did not make any special reference to 2.000. He probably knew

7 the figure of people who had been taken prisoner better than I did,

8 figures for the entire JNA. There were many people who were taken

9 prisoner then.

10 Just think of the scenes from the Bjelovar barracks, when, on the

11 3rd of October, the commander of the brigade was killed and when an

12 enormous group of soldiers was taken prisoner in those barracks, and so on

13 and so forth.

14 I believe that Aca Vasiljevic was guided by that. It's not that

15 we had a particular discussion as to it having to be 2.000.

16 Q. You mentioned this group that came to conduct selection or triage

17 of these prisoners of war, and that was from the security administration.

18 In actual fact, was that the task of that group, that you had only

19 assisted?

20 A. From the moment they arrived that evening, they primarily took

21 over the focus of this attack in terms of finding the perpetrators of the

22 crime, and we cooperated with regard to all matters, as I have already

23 testified here. I did not go beyond what they had asked me to do.

24 Q. Yes. In your evidence, you said that at one point in time, when,

25 on the 20th of November, you were in the hospital in Vukovar, Colonel

Page 13710

1 Vujic said to you that you should stay in the hospital, that you should

2 check the people who were still there, and that he would regulate the

3 transport of crime suspects, their transport to Sremska Mitrovica. Have I

4 interpreted this properly?

5 A. Well, this is the way it was. Perhaps I made a mistake at some

6 point as I was talking about this. But when the colonel assessed that

7 there was no further work to be done in the hospital, and when he saw that

8 the military police and we, the security organs of the Guards Brigade, are

9 doing our work properly, carrying out the tasks that we came there to

10 accomplish, he left.

11 If I can repeat his exact words, more or less, he said,

12 roughly, "Sljivancanin, I am going to Velepromet. You stay here until the

13 end, until this work is carried out." And he said that he would regulate

14 the rest, that is to say, what was still to be handled at Velepromet.

15 At that point, my understanding was that those people who would

16 additionally be found in Velepromet as crime suspects and who would be

17 brought from other parts of town that were still being searched -

18 different basements, different buildings - as well as these people who

19 were brought from the Vukovar Hospital, they would organise a single

20 convoy and, during the course of the day, all of them together would be

21 transported to Sremska Mitrovica. That is what I meant. If I misspoke, I

22 do apologise.

23 Q. Thank you. Tell me, please, this group of officers from the

24 security administration, did it actually have authority given to them by

25 the Supreme Command to carry out what you said just now, that is to say,

Page 13711

1 to select people for this transport and to have them escorted to Sremska

2 Mitrovica?

3 A. That's what they did on the evening of the 19th, and the only

4 thing was that the transport of these people, that is to say, the

5 vehicles, were organized by the command of the 1st Military District

6 through our logistics assistant commander, that is to say, of the Guards

7 Brigade. I really do not know enough about this; how many buses and other

8 equipment what unit gave. The logistics assistant commander knows about

9 this better than I do and Colonel Mrksic knows about this better, too. I

10 really am not aware of all of these details who had to do what.

11 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: Could Mr. Vasic please keep

12 his microphone off while the witness is speaking. Thank you.

13 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Yes, I will switch off my microphone.

14 The interpreters have asked me to keep the microphone switched.

15 As far as the technical aspect of matters is concerned, I think

16 everything is fine now and I think that we can play this footage, 1D42, an

17 excerpt from 1D42. This is a TV programme of the Croatian television.

18 The programme is called Latinca. So can we watch it a bit of it, please.

19 [Videotape played]

20 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much. Later on I'll

21 ask that this be translated.

22 Q. But let us first establish whether the witness is familiar with

23 this or not, so that we know whether we need to elaborate on it or not.

24 A. This is the footage that I remember seeing on Croatian television

25 last year. This was broadcast in the programme called Latinica, on some

Page 13712

1 other programme. But at any rate, last year, they discussed the Vukovar

2 events for two nights in these TV programme.

3 Q. Yes. This is the Latinica TV programme devoted to the issue of

4 whether Vukovar was betrayed, and it has to do with the October events

5 that you gave evidence about.

6 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Could we now play this footage and

7 could I ask the interpreters to interpret the subtitles. I think they are

8 rather clear and not going too fast, and there are only several sentences.

9 [Videotape played]

10 THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] Listen, there are not enough; right?

11 What we have must be sufficient. Are we going to pull out the civilians?

12 No, no, no. How are you going to do it? How are you going to pull them

13 out? No. Therefore, do you know what conditions they are putting, sir?

14 No, no, that's out of the question. Yes, I agree with you about it, but I

15 would just like to remind you that there are 2.000 children there. What

16 are we going to do about these children? All right. All right. I am

17 still here. You do your job and I'll go and inquire about this. No

18 pull-out can be discussed, not at all.

19 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] First of all, I'd like to thank the

20 interpreters for the effort they invested in interpreting what was said.

21 Q. Mr. Sljivancanin, do you recognise the speakers in this footage?

22 A. The man in the camouflage uniform is the so-called Mile Dadekovic,

23 aka Jastreb, who, at the time, was the commanders of the paramilitary

24 forces in Vukovar, and the other voice is the Croatian president,

25 Mr. Franjo Tudjman.

Page 13713

1 Q. In this conversation, Commander Jastreb wants to pull out the

2 civilians and President Tudjman does not allow that; correct?

3 A. Yes, that's correct. And this also reminded me about another

4 occasion when Mr. Marin Vidic told me that children had been taken out of

5 Vukovar to the coast, or something like that, in July of 1991. And he

6 also complained about what the Croatian government did, because they

7 wanted to remove the children out of Vukovar before combat started;

8 however, they didn't allow that. They said that the children needed to

9 come back and that allegedly they would serve as a shield. They would

10 ensure that they would not be attacked. This is what Marin Vidic said.

11 However, I have to tell you, when we reached certain basements in

12 Vukovar, as we swept the terrain in order to ensure that there were no

13 members of the paramilitary formations there, we came across some members

14 of the ZNG who said that they had told civilians that they had to stay in

15 the basements because the JNA would come and slaughter them. So when

16 these civilians saw that we were there to help them, they were surprised.

17 So there were cases like that.

18 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I now tender this

19 footage into evidence.

20 MR. MOORE: I have no objection.

21 JUDGE PARKER: It will be received.

22 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit 844, Your Honours.

23 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation]

24 Q. Mr. Sljivancanin, we spoke about the cable you received from the

25 security administration, and you said to Mr. Lukic, you described the

Page 13714

1 circumstances of how you received this cable from the communications

2 centre of the brigade. Were there other instructions from the chief of

3 the security organs of the Ministry of Defence that you received in the

4 same way as this cable, or were some other means of communications used,

5 or rather, did you use the same centres of communication?

6 A. I received very little information through the communications

7 centre. One of such pieces of information was this cable, and perhaps I

8 received another one or two such requests throughout the entire combat

9 operation. Everything else arrived by mail, in writing.

10 Q. Does this mean that these cables were urgent, because they were

11 not sent through this regular channel, in writing?

12 A. Yes, it means that it was urgent. We were surprised ourselves.

13 We had very few soldiers at the time, and we did not expect that the

14 paramilitary formations would surrender in Vukovar on that day, at least

15 it was a surprise to me and I believe the same is true of others.

16 Q. Thank you. When answering the questions of Mr. Lukic, you

17 described the evacuation on the 18th from Mitnica. You gave evidence,

18 saying that the members of Croatian paramilitary forces who surrendered

19 their weapons at Mitnica were sent to Ovcara because it was nearby, and

20 that on the 20th of November, the persons who had been separated in triage

21 as suspects were not supposed to go to Ovcara. This is why I'd like to

22 look at the entry in Exhibit 375, which is the war log of the 80th

23 Motorised Brigade.

24 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] This is the entry made on the 19th of

25 November, at 1800 hours. This is page 10 in English and in B/C/S ...

Page 13715

1 MR. MOORE: I'm not quite sure what the question is going to be,

2 although I suspect I have an idea, but the war log relates to the 80th as

3 opposed to -- as far as I'm aware, that's the document my learned friend

4 is referring to. And, as far as I understand, this witness has no

5 responsibility, as he says, to that particular brigade. That's the first

6 objection I would make, and the second is it's leading the witness.

7 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, the question is leading

8 because it arises from the answer that Mr. Sljivancanin gave. I agree,

9 but I am just now turning to the inquiry that was sent to the 80th

10 Motorised Brigade by the Superior Command and Mr. Sljivancanin can simply

11 tell me whether he knows about this or not. I think that it is proper for

12 that type of question to be leading. However, I haven't yet found the

13 page number in B/C/S.

14 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Vasic, you may put to the witness whether he

15 does know about this, but you will leave it to him to tell you what he

16 does know about, if he does.

17 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Very well, Your Honour. Thank you.

18 So could we please put on the screen Exhibit 375, the entry made on the

19 19th of November, at 1800 hours.

20 Q. Mr. Sljivancanin, can you please read this to yourself. You don't

21 need to read it out loud. We've already read it several times here in the

22 courtroom.

23 A. It's hard for me to read this handwriting.

24 Q. I'll try to do that and you can follow.

25 "In the morning hours, the imprisoned Ustashas were taken to the

Page 13716

1 prison in Sremska Mitrovica. Combat continues only in the sector of the

2 hospital where the surrender of the remaining members of the ZNG and MUP

3 is expected (about 200). Thus, it was ordered that we be on alert in

4 order to organise the guarding of the prisoners."

5 Do you know anything about such an order; namely, that the command

6 of the 80th Motorised Brigade should be ready to organise the security of

7 the prisoners who were supposed to come from the hospital to the sector of

8 this brigade?

9 A. I see this entry made on the 19th of November, at 1800 hours. I

10 saw this war log for the first time here in the courtroom, or rather, I

11 received it as a document upon arriving to The Hague. I did not have

12 occasion to see it previously.

13 The first thing I need to say is that on the 19th, in the

14 afternoon, as I have told you, sometime after 1500 hours - although I'm

15 not sure about the time - I was at the hospital with the representatives

16 of the International Red Cross and I did not observe that there was any

17 combat.

18 As for this entry, in addition to receiving reports of the

19 security organs, organs for morale, guidance, and logistical support, he

20 also received reports from his subordinates and other commanders. So I

21 cannot explain this entry. I don't know whether Mr. Mrksic issued any

22 assignments to the commander of the 80th Brigade about this issue because

23 I wasn't present, so I can't provide any additional information about

24 this.

25 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I was about to say that

Page 13717

1 it's perhaps the right time for our second break. I am nearing the end of

2 my examination and I would require a couple of minutes to, perhaps, review

3 my notes and I may get rid of some of the questions and hence conclude

4 earlier.

5 JUDGE PARKER: It is a bit early, Mr. Vasic, and because of the

6 earlier break for Mr. Moore, we're going to run out of tape time before

7 7.00. We don't want to squander time. Do you think that we should --

8 that it's important now for you to have the break at this moment?

9 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] No, Your Honours. Let's continue for

10 an additional ten minutes - I think that's what we have left - and then we

11 can break afterwards. Thank you.

12 Q. Mr. Sljivancanin, when speaking of participation in creating and

13 accompanying the convoy of civilians and the wounded, you said that it was

14 in the jurisdiction of the logistical units of the 1st Military District.

15 Did I understand you well?

16 A. Based on the information I had available at the time, I know that

17 after the 18th, the assistant commander for logistics of the 1st Military

18 District, General Zeljko Simanic, was present there with quite a number of

19 officers from that logistics organ, and I believe that they were quite

20 active in ensuring transportation means and providing assistance for

21 evacuation of the people from the area of combat operations.

22 Q. This convoy of the wounded was led by a representative of the

23 cabinet of the Federal Secretary, Colonel Nebojsa Pavkovic; correct?

24 A. Yes, correct.

25 Q. You told us that the convoys with civilians, as well as this one

Page 13718

1 with the wounded, were supposed to travel via Nustar, across the Croatian

2 territory, and we know that later on the route was changed. Can you tell

3 us, why was that? And how come these convoys did not travel via Nustar

4 towards Vinkovci, if you know?

5 A. The first time that the paramilitary formations of Croatia decided

6 to surrender, an order arrived from the Superior Command which was

7 conveyed to us by our commander, Colonel Mrksic, and it said that there

8 were three centres where people from Vukovar were supposed to go. One was

9 in Sid, arranged by the Red Cross; the second one was the prison in

10 Sremska Mitrovica; and the third were agreed locations towards the

11 Republic of Croatia, where the separation of forces was conducted.

12 I know that the convoy from the hospital was supposed to go to

13 Nustar, and as far as I can remember, but I'm not entirely certain because

14 this was dealt with by Colonel Pavkovic, in the evening, I heard that they

15 did not want to accept that convoy and that it went to Sremska Mitrovica.

16 On the 19th, or rather, the night between the 18th and the 19th,

17 the convoy led by Major Skoric, which is to say, that within the staff of

18 the brigade in Negoslavci, through the communications means with the

19 Superior Command, they always made arrangements, because we didn't have

20 direct contact with Croatian authorities; it was done through the 1st

21 Military District. So it had to be agreed with them where these people

22 needed to be sent. Usually, the Chief of Staff would designate somebody

23 from the operations organ to lead the convoy, and the 1st Battalion of the

24 military police would provide escort. And, once again, they refused to

25 accept this convoy, and then after much ado, it was returned back to

Page 13719

1 Ovcara, as I've already said to you.

2 Q. Do you know that on the following day, on the 20th, in the

3 morning, once that convoy left from Ovcara towards Nustar, it was fired

4 upon by the Croatian side? Do you know anything about that?

5 A. I heard that later on at the command post. I personally wasn't

6 involved. I just heard about it because it was discussed. And later on I

7 also heard it from Colonel Pavkovic.

8 Q. Thank you. Now we are going to turn to the portion of your

9 evidence where you said that the original plan was that people who had

10 been considered suspects were to be transferred to Sremska Mitrovica, but

11 that Colonel Vujic, on the 20th of November, believed that it was better

12 for them to go to the barracks. Did I understand you well?

13 A. No. The position was that all citizens, if I may call them that,

14 all civilians, who had not surrendered as members of the paramilitary

15 formations with weapons, in which case we didn't know whether they had

16 committed any crimes or not, were supposed to go to Velepromet from

17 Vukovar and that whole area; and only Mitnica, which did not gravitate

18 towards Velepromet, in order not to create a lot of commotion, only

19 Mitnica gravitated towards Ovcara and those people went towards those

20 facilities.

21 On the 20th, in the morning, when I met with Colonel Vujic at the

22 gate of Velepromet, where he ordered me to report in order to go to the

23 hospital together, I suggested, and I demanded, that these people that had

24 gone through our triage were not supposed to go through the same process

25 at Velepromet, but that it would be best for them to it go temporarily to

Page 13720

1 the barracks until the convoy for Sremska Mitrovica was ready to set out,

2 so that we could find other people that were supposed to join that

3 convoy. The colonel had nothing against it. It was simply an arrangement

4 made that morning in order not to trouble these people twice, to conduct

5 the triage twice.

6 Q. Was your suggestion approved by Colonel Vujic?

7 A. Yes, absolutely. We agreed on this together.

8 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, is this a good time now?

9 JUDGE PARKER: Yes, Mr. Vasic.

10 --- Recess taken at 5.00 p.m.

11 --- On resuming at 5.22 p.m.

12 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Vasic.

13 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours. I only have

14 a couple of questions.

15 Q. Mr. Sljivancanin, now I should like to go back to that part of

16 your statement which refers to the 20th of November, when you say you

17 arrived at the command post in Negoslavci and when, as you said, from

18 Colonel Mrksic, you learned what the further tasks of the Guards Brigade

19 were and that a government session had been held and, as you said, that

20 they had taken over the group of suspects.

21 Tell me, please, were you present at the regular briefing,

22 reporting on the 20th of November, or did this take place after that

23 regular briefing?

24 A. I was not -- I did not attend any meetings at the command of the

25 Guards Motorised Brigade either on the 18th or the 19th or the 20th, in

Page 13721

1 the afternoon. I was discharging the operational tasks of the security

2 organs at that time, so I'm not aware of what meetings were being held,

3 and, at any rate, I did not attend any.

4 Q. I just have to explain the position of my client. He believes

5 that you do not remember well and that he couldn't say that the government

6 took over these suspects on that day.

7 I shall now read to you, in respect of the conclusions from that

8 session, what was said before this Tribunal in another case, the

9 Dokmanovic case, by one participant in that meeting, namely, the Prime

10 Minister Goran Hadzic. And that is on pages -- rather, on page 3124 of

11 the transcript ...

12 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Vasic, we have both Mr. Moore and Mr. Lukic --

13 MR. MOORE: May I let Mr. Lukic go first.

14 JUDGE PARKER: You're so generous, Mr. Moore.

15 Mr. Lukic.

16 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Perhaps I should have deferred to

17 Mr. Moore. I have nothing against the asking of questions, but perhaps

18 now I wish to raise something which is much more of a formal issue. I'm

19 against the presentation to witnesses of transcripts of other persons, in

20 principle, generally speaking. During the OTP's case, we established some

21 rules of the game, which I believe we have all fully respected. Sometimes

22 we could have said that someone was saying or had said something and we

23 strictly paid attention not to make any reference to the name of the

24 person being quoted during our examination, and the OTP actually asked us

25 to abide by that principle. But it seems as if the rules of the game have

Page 13722

1 been confused a bit as we went along, and certain persons, who have not

2 even taken the stand in the Tribunal, are being quoted, i.e., their

3 statements are being presented. Of course, I agree that those who were

4 present in the court are quoted - that is okay - but I am generally

5 against the reading of statements of other persons.

6 So what I'm saying: I would prefer if this were interpreted in

7 his own words, if something is being claimed by another person was

8 interpreted in his own words. And Mr. Sljivancanin is familiar with the

9 testimony given by Mr. Hadzic because he has received the relevant

10 material.

11 JUDGE PARKER: At the moment, of course, we don't have any

12 testimony from Mr. Hadzic.

13 Now, Mr. Moore, is there anything ...

14 MR. MOORE: Yes. Firstly, it is cross-examination and, from my

15 memory, the rules of the game, as they're being called, that my learned

16 friend should not lead the witness on a topic, but, I would submit, more

17 importantly, it is the way that the matter should be put.

18 Mr. Sljivancanin says he was not there on the 18th, 19th, and

19 20th. It seems to me that Mr. Mrksic is saying that that may be

20 incorrect. If that's what is being said, it should be put directly to

21 Mr. Sljivancanin that, on behalf of Mr. Sljivancanin -- on behalf of

22 Mr. Mrksic, Mr. Sljivancanin is incorrect; that he was there on such a

23 such a day and that on that day a topic was mentioned in the presence of

24 Mr. Sljivancanin. That means, therefore, that Mr. Sljivancanin knows the

25 area; that he is able to answer in relation to it; he can either agree or

Page 13723

1 deny.

2 As matters stand, the way it has been put, from my part, I fail to

3 see the logic of its presentation, so I would suggest it has to be put

4 clearly.

5 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Moore.

6 Now, Mr. Vasic, are you adapting your position in view of the

7 helpful comments of your colleagues, or do you want me to give you a few

8 more helpful comments?

9 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I'm going to

10 rephrase my question, but I think that my position has not been understood

11 very well by my colleagues. My position was that Mr. Mrksic claims that

12 he did not say to Mr. Sljivancanin that the persons who were suspects were

13 taken over by the government of Eastern Slavonia, and I wanted to support

14 that by a fact stemming from a statement made by Goran Hadzic, which he

15 made before this Tribunal.

16 In that statement, he claims that the meeting was attended by a

17 lieutenant colonel who said that any surrender was out of the question.

18 That is the point of what I wished to put to this witness.

19 JUDGE PARKER: Well, that isn't evidence that's been given in this

20 trial.

21 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour. Indeed, it was given

22 in the Dokmanovic trial, not in this trial.

23 JUDGE PARKER: Well, I would suggest to you, Mr. Vasic, that you

24 should go no further than to suggest that in another trial evidence was

25 led that whatever it is precisely that you want to say, and then have the

Page 13724

1 witness see whether that reminds him that that could be the case or

2 whether he disagrees with that evidence or what is his position. But you

3 can't dress it up any higher than that, and that is Mr. Lukic's matter of

4 principle, as I understand it. And we're somewhere approaching

5 Mr. Moore's point, but I think he was off on a slightly different one.

6 Yes, Mr. Vasic.

7 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I am

8 precisely going to stand on the ground that you just delineated. I fully

9 agree with what you just said.

10 Q. You heard what was being said, Mr. Sljivancanin. Does this

11 refresh your memory? Was this information somewhat different 15 years

12 ago; namely, that they were not handed over?

13 A. I did not hear what Hadzic said during his testimony. I read a

14 great deal of material and many inaccurate, untrue statements. I claim

15 with full responsibility - I am looking everyone square in the eye here -

16 I know not 100 per cent but with 1 million per cent certainty that I was

17 at the commander's on the 20th, in the evening. As for the government

18 session, before hearing about it from the commander, I heard it from my

19 security officer, Srecko Borisavljevic. I don't want to repeat that. I

20 told you what he said. And I fully stand by what I said; that that was

21 said that evening at the command post.

22 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: Could Mr. Vasic please keep

23 his microphone off while the witness is speaking. Thank you.

24 A. I told you that I was surprised when Srecko Borisavljevic said to

25 me that these persons, instead of being taken to Mitrovica, were taken

Page 13725

1 over by the government of Slavonia, Baranja and Western Srem/Krajina.

2 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.

3 Could we please have a look at Exhibit 843, if possible. That is

4 3D1665; it was a 65 ter document, that is. Page 2.

5 Thank you. Could you please enlarge the fourth paragraph. Thank

6 you.

7 Q. Mr. Sljivancanin, you are aware of this document, aren't you?

8 It's the report of the 10th of December. Or do you want me to show you

9 the first page?

10 A. No need. I'm aware of this document; I know this document.

11 Q. Your positions were presented here in relation to what the

12 government was doing, and it says here:

13 "The command of the Guards Motorised Brigade was compelled to

14 carry out mobilisation of personnel in the zone of combat activities as

15 well and to include them in the fighting in Vukovar. The response of

16 personnel was very low, especially in the village of Negoslavci. The few

17 people who did respond to call-up remained on their positions for two or

18 three days. On the whole, the majority of the Serb population in the zone

19 of combat activities OG South was not ready for participation in battle

20 and they all wanted to guard their village, house, or the like. Such

21 conduct and this poor call-up was mostly contributed to by the government

22 of SO Slavonia, Baranja and Western Srem. That same government appointed,

23 as commanders of staffs of the Territorial Defence, persons who were not

24 respected or held in high regard by the population because of what they

25 had done previously, as well as persons who were in high positions and who

Page 13726

1 were corrupt and who had 'proven themselves' in dirty deals and dirty

2 business.

3 "At one of the meetings of this government (none of the members of

4 that government appeared in Vukovar practically until the liberation),

5 attempts were made to diminish the success of the units of the JNA, and

6 Prime Minister Hadzic figured in that most prominently. The feeling of

7 the majority of the population towards the government and its

8 representatives is bad."

9 Mr. Sljivancanin, can you agree with me that, in this report, you

10 included events from the government meeting held on the 20th of November,

11 in Velepromet, when you said that they were trying to diminish the success

12 of JNA units?

13 A. I have testified here and I said that Srecko Borisavljevic told me

14 about what Bogdan Vujic had told him about in terms of that government

15 session, and the way I understood it then was that their attitude towards

16 us, members of the Yugoslav Peoples' Army, was practically negative, too.

17 In addition to that, this attitude of certain members of the

18 government was negative during the course of our stay in that territory,

19 and I wrote about that in my counter-intelligence estimates. As a matter

20 of fact, I was compelled to bring people in for interviews. When I was

21 given the task to carry out operational work towards this Minister of the

22 Interior that I had brought in for an interview, he left the town. I

23 personally, at that time, did not feel that it was right, and I did not go

24 by that; namely, to have any kind of organs established that were not in

25 accordance with the constitution of the Socialist Federalist Republic of

Page 13727

1 Yugoslavia. That was my position then, that is what I wrote then, and I

2 think that I wrote this briefly but in very realistic terms.

3 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: Yet again, we have great

4 trouble hearing the witness if other microphones are on. Thank you.

5 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] I apologise to the interpreters

6 because of the microphone.

7 Q. You will agree with me that in this report that you submitted at

8 the request of the head of the department you did not state that the

9 government of Eastern Slavonia, Baranja and Western Srem took over a

10 number of certain persons on the 20th of November. That is not written in

11 this report of yours; right?

12 A. I said here that I wrote this report on the 21st and sent it to

13 the administration or department. You had occasion to see many other

14 counter-intelligence reports that I had sent; I showed them here. I did

15 not copy anything from those other reports in the new reports that I

16 wrote. I thought there was no need for repetition. Now it's easy to be a

17 general after the battle, as the saying goes. Had I known that I would be

18 here, facing the Hague Tribunal, perhaps I would have written a great many

19 other things in my report as well.

20 Q. Can you say, after that report on the 21st of November, did you

21 get any instructions from the security administration regarding that

22 report and questions raised in that report?

23 A. No. No, I did not get any instructions, except for what I said.

24 When, together with the chief of security of the cabinet of the Federal

25 Secretary, I, after returning from Vukovar, went to see the head of the

Page 13728

1 administration, he suggested certain questions to me regarding which I

2 should have written a report, and I did that to the best of my ability,

3 and no one raised any objections at that time. Whether they read this,

4 whether they looked at this, what they did, I don't know. But they did

5 not ask me to do anything else.

6 Q. Thank you. Now, I would like us to comment upon the following: A

7 document which is marked 3D050171.

8 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] It is 3D38 in terms of the 65 ter

9 documents. Can we please have it on the screen. Thank you.

10 Q. Mr. Sljivancanin, do you know what this is and whether that is the

11 document that has yet another document attached to it, including

12 information about members of paramilitary formations of Croatia?

13 A. I know what this is. This is a document of the chief of security

14 of the cabinet of the Federal Secretary, dated the 10th of November, 1991,

15 about information concerning members of the National Guards Corps and the

16 MUP in Vukovar. And he is instructing us what we should do in

17 professional terms, in terms of specialist direction, that is to say, us,

18 the security organs. And it is addressed to the security organ of the

19 Guards Motorised Brigade.

20 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] I would now like to ask for the second

21 page to be displayed; namely, the report. Yes.

22 Q. Mr. Sljivancanin, this is actually the document that was

23 submitted, attached to the previous document that we saw, and it includes

24 information about the paramilitary formations of Croatia that are supposed

25 to be a guideline for the work of security organs.

Page 13729

1 A. Probably, if this document was attached to the previous document.

2 Q. Yes. And it was admitted as 826; I see that now. Thank you.

3 Tell me, as for these guidelines that you received, you acted in

4 accordance with them, right, after having received this document? Is that

5 correct?

6 A. Whenever I would receive this kind of document, I would make the

7 commander aware of it and the assistant commanders, too, as well as some

8 commanders, for example, the commander of the battalion of the military

9 police, if he can -- or if they can give me information that would be

10 important for us, the security organs. And we worked, in operative terms,

11 we, the security organs, on the basis of this document.

12 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.

13 Now, I would like to ask that we see document 3D050912; 3D39, as a

14 65 ter document.

15 THE REGISTRAR: Could we please have the document identification

16 number again.

17 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much. 3D050192; 3D39

18 is its 65 ter number. Thank you very much.

19 Q. Mr. Sljivancanin, are you familiar with -- is this document

20 familiar? Take a look at it.

21 A. This is one of the reports on the security situation in the Guards

22 Motorised Brigade which was compiled on the basis of the report of the

23 security organ of the Guards Motorised Brigade by the chief of security of

24 the cabinet of the Federal Secretary and sent to the security

25 administration.

Page 13730

1 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Can we take a look at the end of this

2 page, and zoom in on it, please.

3 Q. This last sentence says:

4 "In work on processing prisoners of war, the organ of security of

5 the Guards Motorised Brigade was suggested --" rather, "it was suggested

6 to the organ of security of the Guards Motorised Brigade to adopt a

7 selective approach focussing on the detection and identification of war

8 criminals and documenting of war crimes; the identification of foreign

9 mercenaries; the elucidation of the objectives and intentions; the

10 documenting of the conjunction with the foreign factor; the documenting of

11 espionage activities in favour of foreign intelligence institutions; the

12 collection of important intelligence on the disposition, strength,

13 armament, and intentions of the enemy forces; and the creation of

14 conditions for the operational combining or planting of misinformation.

15 "We shall regularly report on the situation of security in the

16 Guards Motorised Brigade and the measures undertaken."

17 Q. These are guidelines from the department of security and the

18 cabinet of the SSNO, sent to the security organ of the Guards Motorised

19 Brigade; is that right?

20 A. Yes, that is correct.

21 Q. And it is according to these guidelines that you acted.

22 A. We tried. We did our best to act upon these guidelines. If you

23 have read any of the reports that I sent, you could have seen that, in our

24 reports, we actually referred to the individual cases that we had

25 detected, which does not mean necessarily that our reports were always

Page 13731

1 correct. This was preventive work on our part, and all the information

2 that we arrived at was there.

3 As data from a number of sources are collected in one centre,

4 later, if two or three pieces of information should coincide, then they

5 would provide concrete guidelines as to what is to be done in the

6 operative work directed to certain specific individuals. So if you look

7 at any of my reports, you can see that there are a lot of names that we

8 listed there, giving their secret names, what we had learned about them,

9 including the work of foreign mercenaries or some persons that have been

10 infiltrated into the territory.

11 Q. Yes, I believe that you have said to us, if I understood you

12 correctly, that all this data that was ultimately collected by the

13 security administration filtrated, verified, is then again returned to the

14 security organs for further action. Did I get you right?

15 A. The security organ cannot charge anyone, nor can it immediately

16 consider someone an enemy or the perpetrator of a crime unless it has

17 collected detailed and reliable information on that person. That is why

18 the work of the security organ is laborious and it is answerable for its

19 actions should it charge anyone incorrectly.

20 I'm sorry that we, perhaps, might have suspected some person

21 without concretely proving it, because that requires further processing,

22 further work, to see what the ultimate outcome would be. So these are

23 some elements that I regret, but it was so. Our members, the troops and

24 the officers of the Guards Motorised Brigade, as far as they were

25 concerned, we had precise and correct data; and we knew if charged

Page 13732

1 someone, why we were charging that someone.

2 But it was difficult to follow suit in the territory, generally

3 speaking. That is why the collection, the screening of perpetrators, of

4 suspects, of suspected perpetrators of criminal offences, was a very

5 serious exercise. We didn't come to a person and say, "You have killed

6 someone," or so. We would just have people who were suspects and we were

7 suggested to detain such persons as briefly as possible, and then to send

8 them, during combat operations, to Sid, where the investigative

9 authorities were working, and then also as soon as possible to Sremska

10 Mitrovica, where the competent investigative authorities were in

11 operation, for them to actually deal with them.

12 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.

13 Your Honours, at this point, I should like to propose that this

14 document be tendered into evidence.

15 JUDGE PARKER: It will be received.

16 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit 845, Your Honours.

17 MR. VASIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Mr. Sljivancanin,

18 for your answers.

19 That ends my cross-examination, Your Honours. Thank you very

20 much.

21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.

22 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you, Mr. Vasic.

23 Mr. Borovic.

24 MR. BOROVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours.

25 Examination by Mr. Borovic:

Page 13733

1 Q. [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Mr. Sljivancanin.

2 A. Good afternoon.

3 Q. In giving your testimony here, you said that you regularly toured

4 the units of the Guards Motorised Brigade on the front line, did you not?

5 A. Yes, every day, from morning, and sometimes even at night I went

6 to the positions where some units were and I spent the night there. But I

7 spent most of my time with the Guards Brigade troops at the front line.

8 Q. Thank you. Would you be so kind, then, as to tell us: To what

9 extent were you familiar with the tasks of the Assault Detachment 1 and

10 Assault Detachment 2? Were you familiar with the direction of operations

11 of these Assault Detachments, with their war disposition, combat

12 disposition? And were you familiar -- could you observe any problems that

13 they were encountering, and how?

14 A. I was always present at the command post whenever a decision was

15 being taken on the use of units of the Guards Motorised Brigade. I

16 endeavored, I did my best, to remember as much as possible to which unit

17 the commander had issued some specific tasks, because I was interested in

18 that, as the chief of security, whether the commanding officers were

19 correctly honouring their obligation, i.e., executing their tasks. And

20 also, if I considered that the decisions of the commander were not being

21 respected, I also wanted to let the commander know about that.

22 I always knew what particular assault detachment had -- what task

23 it had. Initially, there were three assault detachments; later, I believe

24 that there were five. And I was aware of what their missions were.

25 Q. Thank you. Can you tell us, from this time distance, what was the

Page 13734

1 task of JOD -- of the Assault Detachment 1 and that of the Assault

2 Detachment 2?

3 A. Yes, I can. Assault Detachment 1, according to the decision of

4 the commander, should move along the direction, the street of Svetozara

5 Markovica to the settlement of Bosko Buha and then to Milovo Brdo. And

6 along this axis it was to disarm paramilitary units, dismantle the

7 obstacles, the barricades, and clear the roads to enable free passage,

8 free movement.

9 And Assault Detachment 2 was to go through Sajmiste Street and

10 then on from Dalmatinska Street towards the water tower, lift the siege,

11 the blockade, on the barracks, disarm paramilitary formations along that

12 direction, remove the barricades, and create the necessary, i.e., normal,

13 conditions for the city.

14 And initially, the assault detachment -- Assault Detachment 3 was

15 to go from Vucedol through Mitnica and to break out at the water tower.

16 Q. Thank you. Can you tell us what assault detachment took Milovo

17 Brdo, and in which time period was that?

18 A. I would say that Assault Detachment 1 reached Milovo Brdo and

19 cleared that part of town of all those who were opening fire on the troops

20 and on members of the Yugoslav Peoples' Army. And I remember that that

21 was, perhaps, on the 9th or 10th of November, because at that time a

22 colonel from the General Staff, who I believe was a Croat, asked me to

23 find the person, if I could. He gave me the name of that person who --

24 that was his brother's daughter, in fact; and to send her to Sid. And I

25 had a lot of problems about that and I asked people to help me out, and

Page 13735

1 that is why I remember the exact date.

2 Q. Thank you.

3 MR. BOROVIC: [Interpretation] I should like to ask Your Honours

4 for Exhibit 430 to be placed on the screen, but that is the only one that

5 I will be showing.

6 So, Exhibit 430, the last paragraph, please. Not the first one,

7 the last. Thank you. Number 4. Would you be so kind as to zoom in on

8 the last paragraph, please, a bit more. Thank you.

9 Q. Mr. Sljivancanin, could you please read this under "Tasks." You

10 have a task under item 4, if you could, please read it for us.

11 A. It says here under item 4:

12 "Assault Detachment 1, without the 1st Motorised Battalion, from

13 the current area of combat disposition, to be transferred to the axis

14 Dalmatinska Street to Alija Alijagic Street, and then to the water tower.

15 "Task: In direct conjunction with the 2nd Battalion of the

16 military police and Assault Detachment 4, take features within the scope

17 of streets Alija Alijagic, the Stjepan Supanac school, and reach as soon

18 as possible the area of Slavija (the water tower) from which point prevent

19 the possible pull-out of Ustasha forces from the Mitnica axis."

20 Q. Thank you.

21 MR. BOROVIC: [Interpretation] Can I ask now, Your Honours, as the

22 witness has read this, to place Exhibit 156 on the screen, and to zoom in

23 on the central part of town, as much as possible, to enlarge it.

24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Before this comes up on the screen,

25 may I add that this document that I'm now reading --

Page 13736

1 MR. BOROVIC: [Interpretation] No, you don't have to. Thank you

2 very much. We want to be specific. Please don't mind my interrupting

3 you, but I wish to expedite proceedings.

4 Can you please zoom in on the centre.

5 Q. Is this enough for you, Mr. Sljivancanin, what you can see on the

6 screen, for you to be able to show on this map how it is that you

7 perceived the task of Assault Detachment 1 and the units acting in concert

8 with it? Can you show it on this map?

9 A. Yes, it is sufficient. I can.

10 MR. BOROVIC: [Interpretation] Can I ask the usher to provide

11 Mr. Sljivancanin with a pen so that he could show it to us.

12 Q. Yes.

13 A. This is how it was. This here is Sajmiste Street. Should I mark

14 it with a number?

15 Q. I don't think there is anything on the screen.

16 A. But I am marking it with a red line.

17 Q. That is okay.

18 A. That is Sajmiste Street.

19 Q. Well, you can put number 1 and then circle it. Thank you.

20 A. This here, next to 1, this red dot here, that is the barracks.

21 Should I encircle it?

22 Q. Yes, you may encircle it, and where the barracks is, put a number

23 2. But slowly, please.

24 A. Okay. This here is the barracks. That's number 2.

25 This here is Dalmatinska Street.

Page 13737

1 Q. Mark it with number 3, but I believe this is not the readily

2 visible on the screen.

3 A. This here is Dalmatinska Street. Of course, I can tell you where

4 the other streets are; Radnicka, Svetozara Markovica, the water tower.

5 Here is the water tower, number 4.

6 Q. Thank you.

7 A. And Milovo Brdo is this area here, as far as I can recall, number

8 5.

9 Q. Thank you. Could you, on the basis of what you have drawn in this

10 map, explain to us this mission of Assault Detachment 1 and the units

11 acting in conjunction with Assault Detachment 1, to explain to the Court

12 what that mission looked like.

13 A. In this task which I just read, it is stated that the Assault

14 Detachment 1, without the 1st Motorised Battalion, should be transferred

15 to the axis Dalmatinska Street, marked by 3, and the water tower, and

16 should act there in conjunction with the 2nd Battalion of the military

17 police and Assault Detachment 4.

18 Q. Thank you. Before I ask for this to be admitted into evidence,

19 can you tell us whose decision was it to use the units in this way, as you

20 have described just now?

21 A. I was just about to tell you. As here, this was frequently

22 referred to as an order. It was not an order, it was a decision, a

23 decision of the commander of the Operations Group, for the execution of an

24 immediate task. The commander changed his decisions. When he saw that he

25 failed the first time, he organised his forces differently the next time

Page 13738

1 around.

2 Q. Whose decision was it, then?

3 A. It was Commander Mrksic's decision.

4 MR. BOROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, can we tender this map

5 into evidence.

6 JUDGE PARKER: It will be received.

7 THE REGISTRAR: As Exhibit 846, Your Honours.

8 MR. BOROVIC: [Interpretation] We won't be needing the usher's

9 assistance any longer. No need to draw anything else. And now a question

10 for Mr. Sljivancanin:

11 Q. Do you know, Mr. Sljivancanin, whether Captain Radic was at the

12 hospital on the 18th of November, 1991?

13 A. The last time I saw Captain Radic in Vukovar was when the units of

14 the 1st Motorised Battalion reached Milovo Brdo. On the 18th, I wasn't in

15 the hospital myself. I believe that none of the members of the Motorised

16 Guards Brigade were at the hospital on that day, because, based on the

17 information that I have, our 1st Motorised Battalion, on the 19th at some

18 point, entered the hospital. The documents can confirm this, but I can't

19 tell you anything further about this.

20 Q. Thank you. Can you tell us whether Captain Radic was with you at

21 the hospital on the 19th when Borsinger was there with you?

22 A. I'm telling you again: The last time I saw Captain Radic was at

23 Milovo Brdo, and I don't remember, that is to say, I didn't see him, or

24 rather, he wasn't with me.

25 Q. I'm asking for a direct answer to my question. On the 19th of

Page 13739

1 November, 1991, did you order Captain Radic to arrest Dr. Njavro in the

2 morning hours, between 8.00 and 10.00 a.m., or at any other time during

3 the day?

4 A. Captain Radic was commander of the motorised company within the

5 1st Motorised Battalion. I had absolutely no powers to issue orders to

6 him, nor did I order anything to him. Mr. Njavro was not arrested.

7 Pursuant to my decision on the 20th, Mr. Njavro was taken from the Vukovar

8 Hospital to Sremska Mitrovica.

9 Q. Thank you. And at the same time, did you issue any other order to

10 Radic to arrest the male nurse called Ante Aric; yes or no?

11 A. I never issued such an order, nor was I authorised to issue any

12 orders to Radic.

13 Q. Specifically, did you order, on the following day, Captain Radic

14 to return the aforementioned person back to the hospital, or not?

15 A. That's not true either.

16 Q. Thank you. On the 20th of November, 1991, you were at the

17 hospital. My question is: Did you, at any point in time during that day,

18 in the morning hours, issue an order of any sort to Captain Radic to

19 conduct a selection or to search, with his soldiers, for the men who were

20 moving towards the buses on Gunduliceva Street, by telling him the

21 following, and I'm quoting: "Captain Radic, search these prisoners"?

22 A. This is completely untrue. Neither was I authorised, nor did I

23 see Radic there. The search of the soldiers within the hospital was done

24 by the members of the 2nd Battalion of the military police.

25 MR. BOROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, the reference for my

Page 13740

1 last question is page 9732, line 14 through 17, the evidence of Witness

2 P030.

3 Q. Mr. Sljivancanin, did you order Captain Radic to take Njavro and

4 Ante Aric to the barracks on the 20th, at any point during the day, or

5 not?

6 A. I never issued such an order to Radic. On the 20th, in the

7 morning, after the consultation with Mr. Aco Vasiljevic, Tumanov issued an

8 assignment to my assistant for counter-intelligence tasks, Mladen Karan,

9 and Captain Bozic from the military police to escort four persons to the

10 prison in Sremska Mitrovica. And I gave you the names of those four.

11 MR. BOROVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, line -- page 69, line

12 5 is recorded as a question whereas, in fact, it was the answer provided

13 by Mr. Sljivancanin. Page 69, line 5, that entire segment is the answer

14 of Mr. Sljivancanin. Thank you.

15 Q. Did you, at any point in time, and specifically on the 20th of

16 November, order Captain Radic to return from the barracks 15 to 20 men to

17 the hospital who were members of the medical staff or were related to the

18 medical staff?

19 A. I never issued such an order to Captain Radic. The list of the

20 medical personnel was sent by me, by my driver, to the barracks to my

21 assistant Vukasinovic Ljubisa, and pursuant to my request, he returned

22 persons from that list to the barracks on the 20th, as I have told you,

23 between 11.00 and 12.00.

24 Q. Thank you. Mr. Sljivancanin, did you at any point in time issue

25 any sort of an order to Captain Radic, or not?

Page 13741

1 A. I never had occasion, nor was I capable of issuing any order to

2 Radic. I saw him as any other company commander. It was my duty to tour

3 him and to have a conversation with him that I was entitled to as a

4 security organ, in order to find answers to questions from my

5 jurisdiction, about the location of soldiers, the weapons, and disposition

6 of paramilitary formations in the axis of his company.

7 Q. When you say "the disposition of paramilitary formations," do you

8 have in mind Croatian paramilitary formations?

9 A. Correct.

10 Q. Did you have any kind of a command post at Vuteks, or not?

11 A. I explained to you the deployment of my organs in Negoslavci. I

12 never had any sort of a command post or -- what did you call it? You call

13 it a warehouse at Vuteks? No, nothing of the sort.

14 MR. BOROVIC: [Interpretation] All right. Thank you,

15 Mr. Sljivancanin, I have no further questions.

16 Your Honours, I have concluded my examination.

17 JUDGE PARKER: Thank you very much, Mr. Borovic.

18 Mr. Moore.

19 MR. MOORE: Thank you very much.

20 Cross-examination by Mr. Moore:

21 Q. Mr. Sljivancanin, when one talks about the security organ, and I

22 try and use ordinary language, would it be fair to say that it could be

23 described as the eyes and ears of the command in security areas and

24 advises the commander when necessary?

25 A. Sir, it could not be put that way, that it's the eyes and ears.

Page 13742

1 That is one of the organs, according to establishment, of a brigade and it

2 first appears in the brigade command according to that formation. As for

3 the purview of its tasks and its work that I have already spoken about

4 here, those are prescribed by the rules of service of the security organs.

5 Q. No. Please just answer the question. Security organ, it's the

6 eyes and ears of the command, isn't it? It watches what is going on.

7 That is its function; that is its purview, as you describe it.

8 A. Sir, I am telling you, once again: The security organ is a

9 professional organ of the commands and institutions that has tasks from

10 the field of state security in terms of protecting the constitutional

11 order and the constitution of the state and uncovering hostile activities

12 vis-a-vis a unit and within a unit.

13 Q. What do you mean by "uncovering hostile activities," if it isn't

14 acting as eyes and ears of a command or commander?

15 A. Well, hostile activities are everything that jeopardises law and

16 discipline and the combat readiness of units; namely, criminal offences,

17 discipline, and concealing such acts if they are not reported on through

18 the chain of command; that is to say, all are duty-bound to take care of

19 security in the units, starting from squad leader, platoon leader, company

20 leader, all the way up to the commander of the brigade, and the soldiers

21 themselves within a unit.

22 The security organ leader should, through his own activity and the

23 application of certain methods of work, should - how should I put this? -

24 prevent things from happening, if one does not know that this is going on

25 within a unit because it's being done in a secret way, and even if there

Page 13743

1 are persons who are infiltrated into a unit with regard to a particular

2 matter.

3 Q. That's exactly what I am suggesting. It is not a passive

4 organisation. It is capable of being passive but its function is also

5 active and proactive. That is correct, isn't it?

6 A. I told you, I cannot go outside the purview of my work to explain

7 some kind of theory of security organs. I spent a short period of time

8 working in security organs. It was my understanding that this is one

9 lines of this security function, taking care of these tasks that I already

10 mentioned to you. There's no need for me to repeat them again. But

11 everyone in a unit, from the commander onwards, is in charge of security.

12 Q. But the security organ is a specifically-designed - and I will use

13 the ordinary English word - it is a specifically-designed unit to assist a

14 commander in finding out what may be going on which would be detrimental

15 to that command. That is your task. It's certainly one of your tasks, I

16 would suggest. That's its purview; that's its reason, isn't it?

17 A. Mr. Moore, that's not the way it is. A security organ is not

18 there to discover everything that is going on in a unit. Then there would

19 be no other officers and there would only be a security organ. A

20 commander receives reports according to the chain of command and the

21 security line and moral guidance and logistics. So the security organ is

22 one of these elements taking care of the compactness of the unit and that

23 it acts within the purview of its tasks. The way you put it, there should

24 only be --

25 Q. I'm sorry, I don't mean to interrupt. The security organ adds an

Page 13744

1 additional element to the function of what I will call "everyday

2 officers," doesn't it? Otherwise, it has no purpose at all. That's

3 right, isn't it? It's an additional element.

4 A. Every officer in the structure of the unit, as envisaged by the

5 Yugoslav Peoples' Army, is important in his own right. I cannot single

6 out anyone, including security organs; say that a security organ is more

7 important to the brigade commander than, say, his chief of staff or his

8 logistics assistant commander. It depends on the tasks involved.

9 Everybody is important in his own right, and they make up this compactness

10 that is in the interest of the combat-readiness of that unit, so that it

11 would be as it should be, so that the unit carries out the tasks assigned

12 to it.

13 Q. That's very well. We will have to go through, regrettably, some

14 of the exhibits. Let me just look at this, then, from a common-sense

15 point of view.

16 In 1991, we know over 200 people were murdered, innocent people

17 murdered, and buried in Ovcara. You are, as you say, an innocent man, but

18 whether you like it or not, you have been indicted and stand trial for

19 that. Who do you consider is responsible for the murder of these innocent

20 people? You must have thought about it.

21 A. First of all, it is a great shame and it is highly inhumane on the

22 part of those who killed those people, murdered those people. That was

23 done by cowards. It really -- if I knew who did it, I would have told

24 you. I would tell you here and now, but I did not have occasion to deal

25 with this in detail. I heard everything that you heard here, too.

Page 13745

1 That event occurred - I showed you here - in the zone of

2 responsibility of another unit and at a time when the members of the

3 Motorised Guards Brigade were exhausted, very tired, and when they could

4 hardly wait to get some rest after a mission accomplished. And this was

5 perhaps the most sensitive period, when there is a change-over of duty

6 among units including us, a replacement of units. And one should talk to

7 the people who were in that zone and who testified here to the effect that

8 they did know something about that.

9 Q. I'm sorry, I will ask the question again. You know perfectly well

10 that it's been suggested that you were in charge of OG South, but I am

11 asking you, categorically - we know about the perpetrators - but who was

12 actually responsible for the murder of these innocent people at Ovcara?

13 Are you saying it's the government? Are you saying it is Panic? Are you

14 saying that it is Mrksic? Are you accepting it's yourself? Who is

15 responsible?

16 A. I never said that it was the government or Panic or that it was

17 Mrksic. I have imparted to you the information -- I have here imparted to

18 you the information that I knew then, and I believe that the collection of

19 all the testimonies, all the evidence presented, can actually result in a

20 finding of who actually perpetrated that heinous crime. I really don't

21 know.

22 Now, to give you some just suppositions on my part, I am here as a

23 witness to tell you my truth or about what happened then, what I know

24 happened then, and that is what I'm doing. It is very hard for me to say

25 or judge who did that.

Page 13746

1 Q. Well, that is not correct, I would suggest to you, because what

2 you are saying, is it not that, firstly, Ovcara is not in your zone of

3 responsibility? That's one of the things you are saying, ergo, it's not

4 my fault. It's not my zone of responsibility; it's not my fault; I'm not

5 to blame. You are also saying that you heard that it was handed over to

6 the government and then we now know that people were killed.

7 So I'm asking you, as the innocent man that you say you are, when

8 an indictment was issued in 1995, you must have been racking your brain,

9 saying, "What on earth happened? Who is to blame for this?" So what is

10 your answer?

11 A. Mr. Moore, really, really, when I heard about it, I was extremely

12 distressed and I was extremely sorry, and it is, indeed, the height of

13 abomination that those people should have been killed. And, as I have

14 said in my introductory remarks here, this inflicted great damage and a

15 great blot on the honourable members of the -- members of the Yugoslav

16 army who only wanted to actually carry out their oath, their

17 constitutional oath, to preserve Yugoslavia. And now these people have to

18 bow their heads and, because of those murders, cannot even say that they

19 were in Vukovar because of this dirty business that was perpetrated by

20 somebody else.

21 I have not undertaken any investigations, but I contend this was

22 not a zone of responsibility of the Motorised Guards Brigade. We did not

23 commit those crimes.

24 Q. It's certainly the zone of responsibility of OG South; that is

25 correct, isn't it? The answer is just yes or no, Mr. Sljivancanin.

Page 13747

1 A. Well, overall, this entire area was the operational zone of

2 Operations Group South, but it is primarily in the zone of responsibility

3 of the actual unit in whose ambit it is, and the commander of that unit is

4 responsible. We can say, generally speaking, that it was the zone of the

5 1st Military District of the entire Yugoslavia, but that, then, would be

6 correct. But then other units and other commanders would not be necessary

7 if it were just up to one person.

8 Q. Mr. Sljivancanin, you have made great noises about honesty,

9 looking people in the eye, being truthful. The reality is that this is in

10 the zone of responsibility of OG South; that's right, isn't it? Can we

11 have yes or no on this?

12 A. Well, I have replied. If it is accepted that such a group

13 existed, I am not excluding that it was not its zone. But first it was

14 the zone of the battalion and then the battalion is in the zone of the OG

15 and then it is the zone of the Military District, generally speaking. So

16 what I'm telling you is that the first responsible is the directly -- the

17 commander directly responsible for the zone of the immediate unit, and

18 then we go on along the chain of command.

19 Q. I will ask the question one more time: Ovcara is within the zone

20 of responsibility of OG South; that is correct, isn't it?

21 A. Mr. Moore, in a nutshell, very briefly, Ovcara was first in the

22 zone of responsibility of the 80th Motorised Brigade at the time when it

23 is alleged here -- when it is said here that this crime happened, and the

24 zone of the 80th Motorised Brigade comprised the zone of the OG South.

25 JUDGE PARKER: Mr. Lukic.

Page 13748

1 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] We had three clear questions and three

2 clear answers. This is my comment. I believe, really, that if Mr. Moore

3 asks this question for a fourth time -- Mr. Sljivancanin was quite clear

4 in his first reply, and then the question was repeated and then the answer

5 was repeated.

6 JUDGE PARKER: I know the answers were repeated, Mr. Lukic.

7 Carry on, Mr. Moore.

8 MR. MOORE: Thank you very much.

9 Q. Can we take it, then, that this level of honesty, directness,

10 precision and integrity that you say you are going to display in court,

11 that the answers you have given are a representation of that? Is that

12 what we are to expect?

13 A. Well, I am doing my best to say what I know, in keeping with how I

14 was brought up and reared, and not to withhold anything from you.

15 Mr. Moore, according to our military rules, every commander is,

16 first and foremost, responsible for his own zone, so I'm telling you the

17 zone in which Ovcara was on the 18th, 19th and 20th, first and foremost,

18 was the zone of the 80th Motorised Brigade, and that zone belonged to the

19 zone of OG South.

20 Q. Let's deal with it, then, a different way, if that's the way you

21 are going to answer.

22 Let us take a situation, and a hypothetical situation, that OG

23 South is in the zone of responsibility for Mr. Mrksic. Can we just deal

24 with that for a moment. You don't disagree, I presume?

25 A. Mr. Mrksic, if he was issued orders, although I did say here that

Page 13749

1 we were drawn attention then not to refer to the establishment name of the

2 brigade, but I accepted that that was a secret name for the Guards Brigade

3 as well, and I never, in my appearances, ever referred to the Guards

4 Brigade in Vukovar. So, if he was appointed the commander by an order,

5 then he was the commander of the OG South and he was answerable for the

6 zone of Operations Group South.

7 Q. Can I try and abbreviate that? Is that answer saying Mr. Mrksic

8 was responsible for his zone of responsibility, which was OG South? Is

9 that correct? Is that what you're saying, in shortened form?

10 A. That is correct, if he had the such orders and then appointment to

11 that effect.

12 Q. And if a commander of a zone of responsibility is informed that

13 criminal acts are occurring within his zone of responsibility, he is under

14 a duty to, at the very least, investigate what is occurring; do you agree

15 with that? Yes or no, please.

16 A. I agree with that.

17 Q. And, in accordance with his duty, it is also right to say that if

18 there is a criminal act which is occurring, he should use such force as is

19 necessary in all the circumstances to stop that criminal act occurring.

20 That, also, is correct, isn't it?

21 A. If he should learn that in the zone of the OG South, which is a

22 large zone, any crimes are being committed, he should order first to the

23 commander of the zone where such criminal offences are being perpetrated,

24 be it the brigade, what measures are to be taken in order to prevent such

25 crimes.

Page 13750

1 Q. I will ask the question again. How he does it is a matter for

2 conjecture. But it is right, is it not, that a commander should use such

3 force as is necessary in all the circumstances to stop that criminal act

4 occurring. That is correct, isn't it, as a general principle?

5 A. The general principle would be that the -- for him to ask the

6 commander in charge of the area where such crimes have been committed to

7 take steps to prevent it. If that commander was unable to do that by

8 himself, then to help him; and if he cannot help him, to ask for

9 assistance from the Superior Command.

10 Q. So can I take it that the answer is yes?

11 A. I've given my reply. Please don't hold it against me, but I

12 really should not like to answer with just a yes or no, as in a quiz.

13 I've explained how this was regulated by our rules then in the Yugoslav

14 Peoples' Army.

15 Q. Your rules are quite clear on the matter, I would suggest - and I

16 will deal with it tomorrow - but the reality of the situation is that if

17 an incident occurs, a criminal act occurs, within a zone of responsibility

18 of a commander, that commander has a duty to intervene to stop the

19 criminal act. You've already agreed to that; isn't that right?

20 A. I have agreed, we have agreed, that it is his duty to intervene

21 and request from the specific person responsible for the zone where the

22 crime is being committed to take measures. If he cannot, to help him; if

23 he cannot help him, to seek further assistance from the Superior Command.

24 I think I have been clear.

25 Q. Well, let us just take that one step further. You say it is for

Page 13751

1 him to request from the specific person responsible for the zone where the

2 crime is being committed to make measures. The superior commander, in

3 this case, Mrksic, has an ongoing duty to ensure that the measures that

4 are being taken are adequate and appropriate to stop the criminal act

5 occurring; that is right, isn't it? He can't just issue an order and walk

6 away with blind eyes, can he?

7 A. That is correct. The commander, if he has issued an order, he

8 should actually see to it that that execution -- that that order is

9 executed to the full. He should certainly control whether it has been

10 carried out to the full.

11 Q. And how does he control to the full? Explain to this Court the

12 techniques and methods and systems that a commander can put into place for

13 that.

14 A. First of all, a commander, if he issues a task to a subordinate

15 commander to the effect that he should deal with a problem in his zone for

16 which the former has learned exists, shall seek from the latter feedback

17 information to the effect whether the problem has been dealt with,

18 resolved, to be informed by that subordinate commander.

19 Secondly, a second way, he can personally go to the unit, the

20 subordinated unit, in question and verify whether the problem has been

21 resolved; or he can issue a written order and assign an officer from the

22 command to go to the subordinated command, to control and verify how the

23 subordinated commander has executed the tasks issued him by the superior

24 one.

25 Q. And why would it be important for a commander to go personally to

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1 the unit to verify whether his order is being carried out or not?

2 A. In my view - this is from my standpoint - it is not necessarily

3 correct. I, as the commander, was very often to go and verify whether

4 certain tasks that I had issued were, indeed, being executed, whether they

5 had been dealt with properly, and, at the same time, to also gain personal

6 insight into the attitude of the commander in question vis-a-vis the

7 orders which I issued him; of course, when weather permitted and

8 conditions generally.

9 If I was unable to do that, I was entitled to send certain

10 officers from my own command whom I empowered to carry out that control.

11 But when the task is very important, it is much better for the commander,

12 in person, to check how his orders are being carried out.

13 Q. If a commander was informed that, through the day, there had been

14 abuses and that there was a probability of not only grievous injuries but

15 also death occurring to prisoners of war, would you, in your judgement, as

16 a professional officer, consider it desirable for personal attendance to

17 that subordinate unit?

18 A. If the superior commander had such information, I believe that any

19 commander would, and I would, go and see whether something like that was,

20 indeed, taking place.

21 MR. MOORE: Your Honour, I would like to move on to a different

22 topic and I wonder, even though it's slightly early in the evening,

23 whether it would be possible to conclude 12 minutes early and continue

24 tomorrow morning. I can, however, continue if you wish.

25 JUDGE PARKER: Because of our adjusted timetable, you have only

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1 three minutes left, not 12 or 13, and if you're moving to a new topic,

2 this would be a convenient --

3 MR. MOORE: Thank you.

4 JUDGE PARKER: -- time.

5 We'll resume tomorrow, in a different courtroom, at 9.00 in the

6 morning. I think it's Courtroom II. We'll adjourn now.

7 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 6.47 p.m.,

8 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 31st day of

9 October, 2006, at 9.00 a.m.