Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 3756

1 Monday, 15 October 2001

2 [Open session]

3 [The accused entered court]

4 [The witness entered court]

5 --- Upon commencing at 9.35 a.m.

6 JUDGE LIU: Call the case, please, Madam Registrar.

7 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. This is case number

8 IT-98-34-T, the Prosecutor versus Naletilic and Martinovic.

9 WITNESS: WITNESS AA [Resumed]

10 [Witness answered through interpreter]

11 JUDGE LIU: Mr. Par, are you ready to continue?

12 MR. PAR: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honours. Good morning. I am

13 ready.

14 Cross-examination by Mr. Par: [Continued]

15 Q. Good morning, Witness AA. We shall resume -- we will take up from

16 where we left off last week. If you remember, we were talking about Romeo

17 Blazevic. In relation to the event that you described about Romeo

18 Blazevic's attack on you, you said that one Ernest Takac was with him.

19 Could you tell me, please, if at that time did you know Ernest Takac? Did

20 you know who he was?

21 A. Yes, I did.

22 Q. Did you know his full name?

23 A. Well, not quite the -- his full name but I knew his first name.

24 That's how things are in Mostar. It is a small place, and one meets

25 people around town and comes across various people, so we are all

Page 3757

1 familiar.

2 Q. Right. I understand. Do you know who was Ernest Takac's

3 commander at that time?

4 A. No, I don't.

5 THE INTERPRETER: Will the counsel and witness please make a break

6 between question and answer? And could the witness come closer to the

7 microphone, please?

8 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Par, since you are speaking the same

9 language, you and the witness, please do make a pause after his answer --

10 he answers the question. You know, Judge Diarra feels it is difficult

11 because she relies on French to hear the proceedings.

12 MR. PAR: [Interpretation] My sincere apologies, Your Honours. I

13 will try not to do that again.

14 Q. Right. So my question to you was: Did you perhaps hear at that

15 time that Ernest Takac was a member of the 5th Battalion? Did you know

16 that? Did you hear that at that time or didn't you?

17 A. No, I didn't.

18 Q. Fine. Tell us, please, did you ever hear of a unit called Mrmak?

19 A. Well, it does ring a bell, but I wouldn't know which battalion it

20 belonged to.

21 Q. Did you know of a unit called Vinko Skrobo?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. So you heard about it? You heard about it but you don't know?

24 A. I heard it's the Vinko Skrobo was an anti-terrorist unit.

25 Q. Do you know anything else about that unit except that you heard it

Page 3758

1 was an anti-terrorist group?

2 A. Well, I knew more or less that it was an anti-terrorist group and

3 that they also manned front lines in Santic Street and manned some other

4 front lines, but I really wouldn't know anything more about under what

5 other unit they were or anything else.

6 Q. Very well. You said during your testimony that you heard that you

7 more or less knew everything that was -- that you knew all the rumours in

8 Mostar during the war, that is that you had plenty of information. Now,

9 my question is: Did you at that time hear from someone that at that time

10 when people were being expelled from their flats, that many soldiers and

11 criminals misrepresented themselves, that is that they posed as Stela's

12 soldiers? Did you hear about that, that they were doing that in order to

13 conceal their true identity? Did you hear any such rumours?

14 A. No. People who were being expelled from their towns were mostly

15 saying that they were being expelled by Stela's and Tuta's boys.

16 Q. Right. Now I want to ask you something about the death of your

17 mother. You showed on the photograph where she was killed, where,

18 according to information that you have, her body was found.

19 MR. BOS: Could we go into private session if we're going to talk

20 about this, please?

21 JUDGE LIU: Well, we'll go to the private session

22 [Private session]

23 (redacted)

24 (redacted)

25 (redacted)

Page 3759

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23 [Open session]

24 JUDGE LIU: Any re-examination?

25 MR. BOS: Just a couple of questions, Your Honour.

Page 3760

1 Re-examined by Mr. Bos:

2 Q. Witness AA, this goes back to last week when you were

3 cross-examined by Mr. Meek, the Defence counsel for Mladen Naletilic.

4 Mr. Meek put it in cross to you that you testified in chief that you had

5 observed that Tuta hit Pobric with the butt of a gun. Did you ever in

6 this courtroom testify that you saw Tuta hit Pobric with the butt of a

7 gun?

8 A. I only said in my statement, as I was asked, that he did hit him,

9 but I didn't know whether it was the butt of a gun or a Motorola.

10 Q. In fact, when I asked you that question on Wednesday in

11 examination-in-chief, that you in fact gave the following answer:

12 A. Then he approached Pobric. Don't know what he told

13 him, but at that moment, he suddenly hit him with

14 the Motorola on his head and he started

15 bleeding.

16 And this is on page 80, line 7 of the transcript of Wednesday,

17 10 October. Is that what you answered on that question, Witness AA?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. Now, on Thursday, the witness -- the counsel for Martinovic showed

20 you an exhibit, P704.

21 MR. BOS: I'd like the witness to have that exhibit again. I'd

22 like the witness to look at the front page of the exhibit, the first page

23 of the B/C/S version.

24 Q. This exhibit was shown to you last Thursday, and could you please

25 read out what's written -- what's written -- there are three sort of

Page 3761

1 paragraphs. What's written in the middle paragraph? Could you read that

2 out, please?

3 A. "We enclose herewith the payroll for November 1993 for the members

4 of the Convicts Battalion and the ATG."

5 THE INTERPRETER: Could we have the text put on the ELMO, please.

6 MR. BOS:

7 Q. Now, Witness, do you remember the date when you were beaten by

8 Romeo Blazevic in the MUP station?

9 A. It was in the evening on the 10th. It must have been around 8.00

10 or half past eight the same day.

11 Q. Of which month? The 10th of which month?

12 A. May.

13 MR. BOS: Your Honours, I have no further questions except that I

14 would like to tender Exhibit P12.11 as marked by the witness. And I would

15 like to tender under seal Exhibit P752.1.

16 JUDGE LIU: Thank you. Any questions from the judges?

17 JUDGE CLARK: Can I ask the Prosecutor a question about the origin

18 of the video clip that we saw?

19 MR. BOS: Yes. Well, that's taken from the Croatian Television,

20 HTV.

21 JUDGE CLARK: Was it actually shown on television or was it

22 footage that wasn't used?

23 MR. BOS: Yes. It was indeed shown on television and you can ask

24 the witness. I think he knows about this as well.

25 JUDGE CLARK: Okay. Do you know that, that it was a piece of film

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Page 3763

1 that was shown on the news? Was it accompanied with any narrative?

2 MR. BOS: I'll have to ask. I'm not sure about that.

3 JUDGE CLARK: And if so, would it be possible for us to hear it

4 and have a translation of what was said?

5 [Prosecution counsel confer]

6 MR. BOS: Yes. We can provide that to the Court but it may

7 take --

8 JUDGE CLARK: It may take some time. I don't want to put you on

9 the spot. I don't want you to have to say something that you don't

10 absolutely know. You can come back to me on that. If it was shown on

11 television, I think the Court would like to know what the narrative was

12 that accompanied that clip. I think the Court would like to see that clip

13 again, to see if the emblems and the insignia on the uniforms of the

14 soldiers who appear there could be identified, what force they belonged

15 to. And on the clip also, it seems to me that in the line up of

16 prisoners, we saw, or I think I saw, a prisoner who appeared to be injured

17 about the face, and I was wondering if this witness could identify if that

18 was the prisoner that he was describing who was hit either with the

19 Motorola or the butt of a gun. And if we show the clip first at normal

20 speed, because it's less distorted.

21 JUDGE LIU: We have to go to private session?

22 MR. BOS: Yes.

23 JUDGE LIU: We will go to private session.

24 [Private session]

25 (redacted)

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14 [Open session]

15 JUDGE LIU: Are there any protective measures that you asked

16 before for the next witness?

17 MR. STRINGER: Good morning, Mr. President and Your Honours. No.

18 The next witness will testify in public session. Like one previous

19 witness in this case, he is currently a prisoner in a state, and I'm going

20 to caution the witness that he should not say where he's presently being

21 held, but beyond that, there are no protective measures that the witness

22 is requesting.

23 If I could, while we're in a moment of transition, Mr. President,

24 because the next witness is going to testify in German, we have -- with

25 the Trial Chamber's kind permission, we understand that you've allowed or

Page 3773

1 agreed that an additional OTP staff member can be present in the courtroom

2 during the testimony of this witness. She is present. This is

3 Marie-Ursula Kind, whom -- I believe the Trial Chamber's preference was

4 that she sit at the counsel table, and we can make that arrangement but

5 she's been -- among her many skills is her first language is German, and

6 she's been of great assistance to me in preparing for this witness, and

7 we're grateful that you've allowed her to be present in the courtroom.

8 Mr. President, I could continue, I think, to inform the Trial

9 Chamber of the relevant parts of the indictment that this witness will

10 give testimony and evidence about. We believe his testimony --

11 JUDGE CLARK: Could you tell us first who he is, which witness he

12 is?

13 MR. STRINGER: Yes. I apologise, Your Honour. This is a

14 gentleman named Falk Simang, and he is going to give evidence relevant to

15 paragraphs 7, 10, and 11 of the indictment, which relate to the background

16 part of the indictment. He will give evidence relevant to paragraphs 14

17 through 16 relating to the superior authority of the accused Mladen

18 Naletilic. He will give evidence relevant to paragraphs 18 through 20

19 regarding the existence of an international armed conflict.

20 In respect of count 1, the persecution count, he will give

21 evidence relevant to paragraphs 25 through 27, 31 and 34. In respect of

22 the counts 2 through 5, the counts related to forced labour, he will give

23 evidence relevant to paragraphs 35 and 44. He will give evidence also

24 relevant to paragraph 46, which relates to counts 11 and 12, particularly

25 beatings, mistreatment which occurred in Sovici-Doljani area. He will

Page 3774

1 give evidence relevant to paragraph 53, which is part of count 18 on

2 forced transfer of civilians, and also paragraph 53 relating to

3 Sovici-Doljani, paragraph 54 relating to Mostar. And finally, he will

4 give evidence relevant to paragraphs 55 and 56, which relate to the

5 destruction of Muslim property and the mosque in the area of

6 Sovici-Doljani. And finally, paragraph 57, which relates to plunder.

7 JUDGE LIU: Thank you. Could the usher bring the witness in,

8 please.

9 Yes, Mr. Meek.

10 MR. MEEK: Yes, Mr. President and Your Honours. The Defence is a

11 little confused as to why there would be Ms. Marie-Ursula Kind in the

12 courtroom from the OTP. She's not an interpreter, and Mr. Stringer

13 indicates that he made some agreement with the Trial Chamber to let her to

14 sit in the courtroom. We don't know why. We haven't heard of such a

15 thing.

16 JUDGE LIU: Well, we received this request last Thursday asking

17 for a member from the OTP to be present during the testimony of this

18 witness. Her role is very limited. She's not allowed to make any

19 interventions in the proceedings. She's just present here as a member of

20 the OTP, so we granted this motion.

21 MR. MEEK: Thank you.

22 JUDGE LIU: Thank you. Good morning, Witness. Would you please

23 make the solemn declaration.

24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak

25 the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

Page 3775

1 JUDGE LIU: You may sit down, please.

2 WITNESS: FALK SIMANG

3 [Witness answered through interpreter]

4 Examined by Mr. Stringer:

5 Q. Good morning, Witness.

6 A. Good morning.

7 Q. As you can see, you have the assistance of an interpreter seated

8 next to you, and I would ask, before we start, a couple of things.

9 Perhaps it would be better if you could move forward a little closer to

10 the microphones.

11 Witness, can you please tell me your name and spell your last name

12 for the record?

13 A. My name is Simang, S-I-M-A-N-G. My first name is Falk, F-A-L-K.

14 Q. Mr. Simang, are you presently being held in custody in a prison

15 facility in a different state outside of the Netherlands?

16 A. Yes, I am.

17 Q. I want to just remind you that although we'll be referring to you

18 by your name in the courtroom, I'd ask that you keep in mind not to tell

19 us where you are currently being held.

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. Now, Mr. Simang, were you born and raised in the city of Dresden?

22 A. Yes, I was.

23 Q. That's in the former German Democratic Republic?

24 A. Correct.

25 Q. And by profession, were you trained -- was your skill that of

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Page 3777

1 being a mason and a roofer?

2 A. That's correct.

3 Q. In approximately January of 1993, did you leave East Germany and

4 travel to Marseille in France?

5 A. That's correct.

6 Q. Why did you go to Marseille?

7 A. I wanted to join the Foreign Legion.

8 Q. Were you able to join the Foreign Legion?

9 A. No, I couldn't, since I had a scar from an operation which was

10 only two months back, and for that reason I would not have passed the

11 basic training without medical assistance.

12 Q. When you were in Marseille, did you meet any other Germans who

13 were also trying to join the Foreign Legion?

14 A. Yes, I did.

15 Q. And can you tell us the name of that person?

16 A. I unfortunately only know his first name. His first name is

17 Jurgen.

18 Q. Was Jurgen successful in joining the Foreign Legion?

19 A. No, he was not successful. He had any problems -- he had problems

20 with his knees, and therefore, he was requested to be back in six months'

21 time.

22 Q. So did then you and Jurgen leave Marseille and travel to a

23 different city?

24 A. We did.

25 Q. And what city did you travel to?

Page 3778

1 A. We then went from Marseille to Ljubljana and from Ljubljana to

2 Zagreb.

3 Q. Approximately what month and what year did you arrive in Zagreb?

4 A. I suppose it was February 1993.

5 Q. What was the reason why you travelled to Zagreb?

6 A. We wanted to bridge the time and join as voluntary to the Croatian

7 army.

8 Q. Tell us what happened then when you arrived in Zagreb?

9 A. We were taken to military barracks of the Croatian army. There we

10 stayed overnight. And the next morning, we went to Zagreb. We were

11 driven there to a hotel. There we were presented -- introduced to a

12 number of officers, and we were told that there was no longer a war in

13 Croatia but that they needed voluntaries in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Thus it

14 was it happened that we were sent to Bosnia-Herzegovina.

15 Q. You state that you were introduced to certain officers there. Do

16 you know what army or military organisation they belonged to?

17 A. They were officers of the Croatian army HV.

18 Q. And you said that you were then sent to Bosnia-Herzegovina. Did

19 these officers of the HV provide you with anything?

20 A. They gave us a letter, a sheet of paper, which we handed to the

21 bus driver at the bus station, whereupon we were allowed to travel free to

22 Bosnia-Herzegovina, to Mostar.

23 Q. Did these officers indicate anywhere in particular where you

24 should go in Bosnia-Herzegovina?

25 A. They said we were to go to Mostar.

Page 3779

1 Q. How long did it take for you to arrive in Mostar, travelling by

2 bus?

3 A. A few hours. I'm not in a position, unfortunately, to tell you

4 exactly how long it took us.

5 Q. So we are still talking roughly about the period sometime February

6 1993?

7 A. That's correct.

8 Q. When you arrived in Mostar, tell us what happened. Did you

9 attempt to join an army in Mostar?

10 A. Yes. We were taken to a hotel, and in this hotel, there were some

11 people who accompanied us. They were dressed in uniforms. We stayed

12 overnight in that hotel. And the next morning, we were taken to the

13 Heliodrom of Mostar.

14 Q. Now, when you say "we were taken to the Heliodrom," who are you

15 referring to?

16 A. That's Jurgen and myself.

17 Q. And what happened when you arrived at the Heliodrom?

18 A. At the Heliodrom, we came to know another German and a Croatian

19 person who spoke fairly well German. Then we were introduced to the

20 commanders, and we were given a room, which we could -- where we were

21 accommodated.

22 Q. Do you recall who the commanders were that you were introduced to

23 at that time?

24 A. Yes, that was Lija and Baja.

25 Q. Now, you mentioned another German and also a Croatian person who

Page 3780

1 spoke German. Do you recall their names?

2 A. Yes, I do. The German was Maximilian Resch, and the Croatian

3 person was Vlado. That is the only part of the name of his I know.

4 Q. Were they -- did they belong to any military organisation?

5 A. Yes. They were part of the HVO.

6 Q. And within the HVO, do you know if they belonged to a particular

7 unit?

8 A. Yes. They were part of the ATG.

9 Q. Did you have a conversation with the person you've named Baja,

10 Lija?

11 A. Yes, I did.

12 Q. And can you tell us what he said in that conversation?

13 A. We were told that we were not supposed to play Rambo but that what

14 it was all about was real war, and that actors, or whatever we might be

15 called actors, were not needed there.

16 Q. And what happened after this conversation with Lija?

17 A. We had to wait for the time because we were supposed to be

18 introduced to the general who would have the final say whether we were to

19 be members of their groups or not.

20 Q. And who informed you that you had to meet with a general?

21 A. We were translated by Mr. Resch or by Vlado respectively.

22 Q. Let me ask you that question again. You said that you were

23 informed that you had to wait or you had to be introduced to the general

24 who would have the final say. Let me first ask you: Who told you that

25 you had to be introduced to the general?

Page 3781

1 A. It was told or it was said by Lija, and it was translated by

2 Vlado.

3 Q. And did you subsequently learn who was the general that he

4 referred to?

5 A. Yes. We were told that the general's name was Tuta.

6 Q. Did you learn anything else about Tuta at that time?

7 A. Not in the beginning, no.

8 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, I'll ask the witness be shown

9 Exhibit 41. It consists of two photographs. Mr. President, I have copies

10 here at counsel table. If it would speed things along, we could just work

11 with those for the time being.

12 JUDGE LIU: Yes. And it will be put on the ELMO, I suppose?

13 MR. STRINGER: Yes, Mr. President.

14 JUDGE LIU: Thank you.

15 MR. STRINGER: Perhaps the witness could first take a quick look

16 at those and then we'll put them on the ELMO.

17 Q. And as the usher puts those on the ELMO - either one is fine; we

18 will put them both on one after the other - witness, can you tell us if

19 you recognise the person whose photographs were just placed in front of

20 you?

21 A. Yes. That's the commander of the ATG, Lija.

22 Q. Is this the person that you've just referred to?

23 A. Yes, that's him.

24 MR. STRINGER: If you could place the other photograph there for a

25 moment or two? Thank you.

Page 3782

1 Q. Mr. Simang, after this particular meeting at the Heliodrom, did

2 you have an opportunity to see this person at other times?

3 A. Yes. I saw him frequently at a later stage.

4 Q. Thank you. I think we can withdraw the photographs now. So then

5 you said that you were to be introduced to this -- the general who would

6 decide. Did that meeting then subsequently take place?

7 A. Yes, it did happen.

8 Q. When did that happen?

9 A. Approximately one or two days later, we were taken up from the

10 Heliodrom to Siroki Brijeg.

11 Q. Tell us what happened when you arrived in Siroki Brijeg.

12 A. We went to a cafe, Cafe Marlboro by name, and there we were

13 introduced to General Tuta.

14 Q. How did you communicate with General Tuta?

15 A. Astonishingly in German, because General Tuta knows German

16 perfectly.

17 Q. Was anyone else present with him at the Cafe Marlboro, if you can

18 recall?

19 A. Yes, several people, all dressed in uniforms.

20 Q. Did you subsequently learn the identity of any of those other

21 people?

22 A. Yes, I did. One of them was Ivan, his driver and his bodyguard.

23 Q. Did anyone accompany you to Siroki Brijeg from Mostar?

24 A. Yes, this German person, Maximilian Resch, did.

25 Q. And was Jurgen also with you?

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Page 3784

1 A. Yes. As a matter of fact, Jurgen was also present.

2 Q. How was Tuta dressed at this meeting?

3 A. He was dressed in a uniform.

4 Q. Can you tell us what was said by you and by Tuta when you met with

5 him there?

6 A. Tuta asked us whether we had military training. We answered to

7 the affirmative. And then Tuta told us that we were not here for fun.

8 Q. Now, when you told Tuta that you had military training, were you

9 telling him the truth?

10 A. No. I didn't have any pre-military training by that time.

11 Q. Can you recall anything else that was said at this meeting?

12 A. No, not so far.

13 Q. What took place after this meeting occurred?

14 A. General Tuta gave sort of a sheet of paper to Maximilian Resch,

15 where he wrote something onto this piece of paper, and then we went back

16 to the Heliodrom, to Mostar.

17 Q. Do you know what was written on this sheet of paper? What was it

18 about?

19 A. Yes. Later we were -- said that we had been accepted.

20 Q. So then after you had this meeting with Tuta, you said that you

21 went back to the Heliodrom in Mostar. What happened then back at the

22 Heliodrom?

23 A. We were sent to the office of Lija via respectively a form -- a

24 sheet of paper with a form was laid before us on the table. Vlado

25 translated it and all our personal data were recorded. That was more or

Page 3785

1 less our acceptance to the group.

2 Q. Do you receive any supplies or equipment then after you did this

3 paperwork?

4 A. Yes. Later we went up to Siroki Brijeg again to a sort of store

5 or magazine where we were handed over a uniform.

6 Q. Now, at the time that you were doing the paperwork in Mostar, did

7 anyone tell you about any rules that applied to your joining?

8 A. Yes. We were still told down there that we were in an army, that

9 the laws of the army of the war were valid here, that we would be shot in

10 case of desertion, and that we had to stick to the rules.

11 Q. Now, at this point when you were at the Heliodrom, what group or

12 army did you think you were joining? What was your understanding?

13 A. In the beginning, we thought that we were part of the ATG down at

14 the Heliodrom.

15 Q. And then did that change at some point?

16 A. Yes. We were then placed to the Park Hotel at Siroki Brijeg, and

17 there we were assigned to the Kaznjenicka Bojna.

18 Q. Now, a moment ago I think you were starting -- I had asked you

19 about military supplies or equipment that you received. Where did you

20 receive those?

21 A. At Siroki Brijeg, at our base that was almost opposite to the

22 Marlboro cafe.

23 Q. What sorts of things did you then receive in Siroki Brijeg?

24 A. Uniform, that is, a shirt, boots, trousers, a sweater, and a

25 jacket.

Page 3786

1 Q. At any point did you receive an identification card?

2 A. Yes, we did, an army ID. When we were dressed in uniform, we were

3 sent to a photographer to have our photographs taken, whereupon an

4 Iskaznica, that's an army ID, was prepared.

5 MR. STRINGER: At this time I'd ask the witness be shown a new

6 exhibit which has been marked 354.1.

7 Q. Okay. Witness, you've just been handed two pieces of paper, and

8 can you tell us if you recognise what's been placed before you?

9 A. Yes. That's an army ID.

10 Q. Can you tell us when and how that was made?

11 A. When? Well, it was then when we had taken our photographs. Then

12 the photographs were sent in. And how it is prepared, I do not know. I

13 only know that the papers were sent away and that a few weeks later we

14 received this ID.

15 Q. Now, Mr. Simang, looking at the identification, it appears to be

16 dated 27th of April, 1993. Are you able to explain the time difference

17 between what I thought was February 1993, this being dated April 1993?

18 A. We had to wait for some time for the IDs to be returned. We were

19 said time and again that the IDs had been sent in and that it would take

20 some time.

21 Q. And so do you recognise this as an ID card that you received?

22 A. Yes, correct, that's my ID.

23 Q. Now, you testified that you were informed, in fact, that you would

24 be assigned to the Kaznjenicka Bojna, the Convicts Battalion. Where was

25 the Convicts Battalion based?

Page 3787

1 A. Our accommodation was Siroki Brijeg, Park Hotel, and the base was

2 approximately five minutes to walk on foot, opposite the Cafe Marlboro,

3 also located at Siroki Brijeg.

4 Q. Now, we are talking about, I believe, February of 1993. Tell us,

5 from that point forward -- from that point forward, how long did you

6 remain a member of the Convicts Battalion?

7 A. Up to the time when I left Croatia.

8 Q. Do you recall when that was?

9 A. Approximately February, March, 1994.

10 Q. At the time that you left, was the conflict between the Muslims

11 and the Croats still going on?

12 A. No. At that time, United Nations were there, and it was said that

13 foreign soldiers had to leave Croatia or they, as an alternative, could --

14 should get married.

15 MR. STRINGER: I'll ask the witness be shown Exhibit 26.11, which

16 is a photograph, if it could be placed on the ELMO.

17 Q. Mr. Simang, do you recognise the photograph that's now been placed

18 on the ELMO?

19 A. Yes. That's our accommodation. That's where we stayed overnight

20 there. That's the Hotel Park at Siroki Brijeg.

21 Q. And how long did you live at this place?

22 A. For the whole of the period.

23 Q. And during that period, what rank or position did you hold in the

24 Convicts Battalion?

25 A. I was an ordinary soldier.

Page 3788

1 Q. Can you tell us generally what sorts of tasks you were assigned to

2 perform during military operations of the Convicts Battalion?

3 A. Several times, I was sent to the infantry. Then I was sent to

4 cannon, to Mr. Resch. It differed, depending on the assignment we were

5 sent out for.

6 Q. How were you paid?

7 A. We got our money from the base that was opposite the Cafe

8 Marlboro, and we were given approximately 350, 400 deutschmarks.

9 Q. Is that per month?

10 A. Per month, yes.

11 Q. Now, again, generally speaking, during this period, February 1993

12 until the time you left the Convicts Battalion, tell us, as far as you

13 know, how the Convicts Battalion was organised. What was its structure?

14 A. In the Convicts Battalion, there were almost exclusively

15 officers. They were subordinate to our commander; our commander was Mario

16 Cikota. And above all of them was Tuta. Tuta was the one who had the

17 last, decisive say.

18 Q. Were subordinates of -- were other soldiers based in other places

19 outside of Siroki Brijeg?

20 A. Yes, they were, for certain actions. A mortar unit was called

21 from Posusje, from Ljubuski, but also from Grude and also from Mostar.

22 Q. You said earlier that Lija was the commander of the anti-terrorist

23 group or ATG. What is ATG?

24 A. ATG is an anti-terrorist group, and it was part and parcel of the

25 Convicts Battalion. It was subordinate to the supreme command of General

Page 3789

1 Tuta, and so also were Lija and Baja.

2 Q. Did General Tuta have any superiors, as far as you knew?

3 A. Not that I would be aware of. Maybe, perhaps in Zagreb, but I

4 don't know.

5 MR. STRINGER: I'd ask the witness be shown Exhibit 26.9.

6 Q. Okay. Now, Witness, are you able to recognise this place which

7 appears on this photograph?

8 A. No, I'm sorry, no.

9 MR. STRINGER: If I could ask the usher perhaps just to give the

10 photograph to the witness and allow him to take a moment just to look at

11 it, to see if he can recognise anything.

12 Q. Witness, are you able to recognise this photograph?

13 A. That is Siroki Brijeg.

14 MR. STRINGER: If we could place it back on the ELMO?

15 Q. Witness, let me ask you first, you mentioned the Cafe Marlboro.

16 Is the Cafe Marlboro shown in this photograph?

17 A. Yes. It should be on the -- on the bottom left, the house bottom

18 left.

19 MR. STRINGER: If the witness perhaps could use the pointer?

20 Q. Mr. Simang, if you can -- and if it would assist you just to hold

21 the photograph for a moment again, just let us know.

22 A. At this part there.

23 Q. Now, are you --

24 A. That obviously was our base and there, just opposite the Marlboro

25 Cafe.

Page 3790

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Page 3791

1 Q. So just for the record, is the Marlboro Cafe shown in its entirety

2 on this photograph?

3 A. I cannot tell you exactly whether it's exactly this house. I only

4 know that it was just a bit opposite.

5 Q. Okay.

6 MR. STRINGER: Well, I'm going to ask if the witness could be

7 given a marker.

8 Q. Mr. Simang, I'm going to ask you to place a circle in the area in

9 which you're indicating would be the location of the Cafe Marlboro. And,

10 Witness, while you've got the pen, you've just mentioned that your base

11 was there, and so I'm going to ask you also --

12 A. I'm no longer sure. I'm sorry. I'm no longer sure when I look at

13 this photograph.

14 Q. Thank you. We can set the photograph aside then. We can withdraw

15 the photograph.

16 Now, during the time that you were a member of the Convicts

17 Battalion, tell us generally what was the daily routine, if there was a

18 daily routine there in Siroki Brijeg for members of the Convicts

19 Battalion?

20 A. Yes. We had to come to the base in the morning. There was a sort

21 of roll call, where we were instructed what sort of stage there was,

22 green, yellow, or red, whether we were allowed to leave Siroki Brijeg or

23 whether we had to be dressed in army uniform at the Park Hotel. And then

24 we were mostly sent to the fitness centre in Siroki Brijeg. There we made

25 jogging and were trained in keeping ourselves fit.

Page 3792

1 Q. What was the difference between stage green, yellow, or red?

2 A. When we had green, we were allowed to leave Siroki Brijeg. The

3 yellow phase meant we had to stay at Siroki Brijeg, and red meant that in

4 full gear, including the rifle, we had to be in front of the cafe. That

5 was when an assignment was imminent.

6 Q. You mentioned a roll call. Who would do the roll call?

7 A. It depended. Sometimes General Tuta was there with us or Ivan

8 Andabak or our commander, Mario Cikota.

9 Q. Who was Ivan Andabak?

10 A. Ivan Andabak was General Tuta's right-hand man or his deputy.

11 Q. What was his role in the Convicts Battalion?

12 A. He was the deputy of General Tuta. Most of the time he then was

13 in the Ministry at Mostar.

14 Q. What languages did he speak?

15 A. Perfectly German, as far as I know, Spanish, and Serbo-Croatian.

16 Q. Did you ever have occasion to see him using his Spanish language

17 skills?

18 A. Yes. He was in touch with the Spanish UNPROFOR who were there or

19 who had their headquarters in Medjugorje, and there he talked to people

20 occasionally.

21 Q. Do you know if Andabak ever received a promotion?

22 A. Yes. General Andabak was promoted general.

23 Q. Do you recall when that occurred generally?

24 A. That was towards the end of the war. It must have been early

25 1994, but I could not exactly tell you.

Page 3793

1 Q. Who promoted him to the rank of general?

2 A. That was direct orders from Zagreb.

3 Q. And how do you know that?

4 A. Because there was a ceremony and this Susak was also present, the

5 Minister of Defence, who also is of origin from Siroki Brijeg.

6 Q. Where did the ceremony take place?

7 A. The promotion was in Park Hotel, and then we went up to Kitic.

8 That was the restaurant where the actual celebrations took place.

9 Q. Was this in Siroki Brijeg?

10 A. Yes, it was there too.

11 Q. You mentioned that -- you mentioned also the name of someone named

12 Cikota. Who is Cikota?

13 A. He was the commander of the Convicts Battalion.

14 Q. What was his position in the Convicts Battalion?

15 A. He was our commander.

16 Q. Who was superior to him in the chain of command?

17 A. Ivan Andabak and General Tuta.

18 JUDGE LIU: Mr. Stringer, is it a convenient time for us to

19 break?

20 MR. STRINGER: Yes, it is, Mr. President. I apologise. I didn't

21 see the clock.

22 JUDGE LIU: We will resume at 11.30.

23 --- Recess taken at 11.05 a.m.

24 --- On resuming at 11.35 a.m.

25 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Stringer?

Page 3794

1 MR. STRINGER: Thank you, Mr. President.

2 Q. Now, Mr. Simang, during the time that you were a member of the

3 Convicts Battalion, did the Convicts Battalion participate in any military

4 operations in a place called Doljani?

5 A. Yes, they did, in Doljani.

6 Q. And did you participate in any of those military operations

7 yourself?

8 A. Yes, I participated.

9 Q. How many times were you involved in operations in Doljani?

10 A. Approximately two or three times.

11 Q. Can you recall approximately what month these operations took

12 place?

13 A. I'm sorry, I do not know, as far as time schedules are concerned.

14 What I know is my first operation was when Cikota fell, and obviously it

15 is known here when that was, as far as the time, the point of time is

16 concerned.

17 Q. So you're saying that the first operation in Doljani was the one

18 in which Cikota was killed?

19 A. Yes, correct.

20 Q. Let me ask you some questions, then, about the operation that

21 occurred there prior to or at the time Cikota was killed. First, let me

22 ask, if you know, what was the objective of this first operation at

23 Doljani?

24 A. The Muslim troops had made an attack. They displaced the front

25 lines. And it was our job to make the -- to go back to the old line,

Page 3795

1 front lines, and also to attack a bunker.

2 Q. Do you know how many members of the Convicts Battalion were

3 deployed in this operation?

4 A. The entire Convicts Battalion and the entire ATG.

5 Q. When you say the ATG, are you able to identify a particular ATG?

6 A. From Heliodrom, the ATG from Heliodrom, Mostar.

7 Q. And again, who was the commander of that particular ATG?

8 A. The ATG was under the command of Lija and Baja, and the supreme

9 commander was General Tuta.

10 Q. Did you and other members of the Convicts Battalion go directly

11 from Siroki Brijeg to Doljani?

12 A. No, not directly to Doljani. We had a stop in between, somewhere

13 in between, at a place called Masna Luka.

14 Q. What did you do at Masna Luka and how long did you stay there?

15 A. In Masna Luka we just stayed overnight. We were given ammunition,

16 and we waited for being able to march into Doljani.

17 Q. What was your own task in this operation?

18 A. I was -- I participated in this operation, in cleansing this town

19 of Doljani, and also at the bunker position.

20 Q. The English word that I just received is "cleansing." Tell us

21 what you mean by "cleansing."

22 A. That the Muslim population be driven away from the place of

23 Doljani.

24 Q. Tell us how you participated in that task.

25 A. We searched houses for people who might still have been in these

Page 3796

1 houses.

2 Q. And what was done with persons who were found in those houses?

3 A. They were driven from this place. Few were in the church, that's

4 in the mosque, of this place.

5 Q. Now, you mentioned also something about taking a bunker. What --

6 can you explain that?

7 A. The bunker was the job of Cikota, and in this operation, where he

8 fell, some person must have been outside this bunker, and with a targeted

9 firing, our commander, Cikota, was killed.

10 Q. How did you learn that he was killed?

11 A. I didn't understand the question.

12 Q. How did you personally learn that Cikota had been killed in this

13 operation?

14 A. I was approximately 100 metres away from this spot.

15 Q. Now, did -- was any base or headquarters established for this

16 Doljani operation?

17 A. Yes, it was.

18 Q. Can you describe this place?

19 A. It was some sort of farmyard with a fish basin or fish growing,

20 whatever it meant. It was some sort of courtyard.

21 MR. STRINGER: May the witness be shown Exhibits 8.8, 8.9, and

22 8.10. If the witness could first look at those and then we'll place them

23 one after another on the ELMO.

24 A. Yes, that's this base.

25 MR. STRINGER:

Page 3797

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Page 3798

1 Q. Okay. We're talking about all three photographs. Is it your

2 testimony that they show this base that you've just described?

3 A. Correct, yes. That's the base.

4 MR. STRINGER: For the record, Exhibit 8.8 has now been placed on

5 the ELMO. I'd ask that Exhibit 8.9 be placed there. Now Exhibit 8.10.

6 We will come back to those, so I think they can be left there. We don't

7 need them on the ELMO at this point, but there will be additional

8 questions about one of those photographs.

9 Q. Now, you just talked about when Cikota was killed in this

10 operation. Tell us then what happened after that occurred.

11 A. The body of Cikota was brought back to the base and then

12 General Tuta ordered that the complete ATG and the Convicts Battalion were

13 to withdraw to Siroki Brijeg for the funeral.

14 Q. So did any further military operations take place at that time in

15 Doljani?

16 A. Nobody returned to Doljani.

17 Q. How long were you in Doljani, you personally, how long were you in

18 Doljani before Cikota was killed?

19 A. Our commander fell on the first day of our assignment in Doljani.

20 Before that we were in Masna Luka.

21 Q. Now, during this day, this operation, do you know if any Muslims

22 were captured in Doljani?

23 A. Yes.

24 Q. And do you know what happened to them?

25 A. They were brought for interrogation to the base and there

Page 3799

1 General Tuta and Ivan Andabak interrogated them.

2 Q. When you say "the base," are you talking about the photographs

3 that you were just looking at?

4 A. Correct. That's what I'm talking about.

5 Q. Were any prisoners removed from Doljani and taken to a different

6 town during that first operation?

7 A. Yes. There was a transport that was supposed to go to Ljubuski.

8 Q. Now, did you personally participate in that transport to

9 Ljubuski?

10 A. I had participated in one transport, but I do not know whether

11 it's the one we're talking about.

12 Q. Now, you stated that the Convicts Battalion withdrew and returned

13 to Siroki Brijeg for the funeral. Were you present in Siroki Brijeg when

14 the funeral of Cikota took place?

15 A. Yes, I was present, and I wore a wreath.

16 Q. How many days did the Convicts Battalion remain in Siroki Brijeg

17 for the funeral of Cikota?

18 A. I am sorry, but I wouldn't be able to give you the exact length of

19 time. A few days.

20 Q. And then after those few days, what did the Convicts Battalion

21 do?

22 A. We returned to Masna Luka and then to Doljani.

23 Q. And what was the purpose of going back to Doljani?

24 A. To take revenge for the killing of Cikota.

25 Q. Now, what were your orders in respect of that second operation at

Page 3800

1 Doljani?

2 A. Complete cleansing and no prisoners to be taken.

3 Q. How did you receive those orders?

4 A. This order was given down at the base, and we were translated it.

5 Q. Who personally gave you that order?

6 A. General Tuta.

7 Q. Were those orders carried out during this operation in Doljani?

8 A. Yes, they were.

9 Q. Now, during what we are now calling the second operation at

10 Doljani, were any Muslim prisoners captured at that time?

11 A. Yes. A few were taken prisoner. It was a number of people

12 dressed in uniforms.

13 Q. And what was done, then, with those prisoners?

14 A. They were also interrogated down at the base.

15 Q. Do you know whether those prisoners were mistreated in any way?

16 A. Yes. They were beaten.

17 MR. STRINGER: I'd ask the witness be shown Exhibit 8.9 again,

18 which is one of the photographs he just looked at.

19 Q. Now, looking again, for the record, what is this place that we are

20 looking at here?

21 A. That's the main base of the operation for Doljani. This is where

22 General Tuta was based.

23 Q. Were any other commanders of the Convicts Battalion based in this

24 location?

25 A. Yes. Ivan Andabak was also represented there.

Page 3801

1 Q. You were describing beatings that took place at this location.

2 Perhaps if you could use the pointer, you could indicate the location

3 where the beatings were occurring.

4 A. Approximately here, there was a wooden shed, a wooden shed which

5 is no longer existing there in this picture.

6 Q. What was taking place at the wooden shed?

7 A. The prisoners were taken there. Then General Tuta and Ivan

8 Andabak came and interrogated the people one after another.

9 Q. Okay. Now, I want to go through this event in greater detail.

10 Were prisoners beaten before Tuta and Andabak arrived?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. Who was beating the prisoners at that time?

13 A. First the people who had arrested them. They had to crawl on

14 their knees and hands to the shed. There they were kicked with the feet

15 and they were beaten with the butts of rifles in their backs.

16 Q. Did you participate in the beating of the prisoners at that time?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. You said that they were crawling. What was the ground like in

19 that area?

20 A. At that time, it was very muddy. It had rained.

21 Q. How many prisoners, approximately, were in your custody there on

22 that occasion?

23 A. It was approximately six to seven people, but I'm not entirely

24 sure about it.

25 Q. How long did these beatings take place before Tuta and Andabak

Page 3802

1 arrived?

2 A. I wouldn't be able to tell you for how long it had taken place.

3 Q. Can you give an approximation? Are we talking about several

4 hours, or some shorter period of time?

5 A. Well, I cannot tell you what distance they had covered before they

6 were taken prisoner. They had been taken prisoner in a forest place, and

7 then it was a distance of 10 to 15 minutes to be taken to our base. And

8 when they arrived at our base, General Tuta and Andabak joined us

9 approximately five minutes later.

10 Q. So just so we are clear, you were not present in the place where

11 these people were captured?

12 A. I personally was not present when they were taken prisoner.

13 Q. Now, taking the pointer again would you please indicate the

14 location in which these beatings were taking place before the arrival of

15 Tuta and Andabak?

16 A. They came from this forest behind the house. So they moved then

17 this distance and arrived then at this place, and it was here at this spot

18 that this wooden shed was located.

19 Q. Mr. Simang, at this time taking a marker, if you would please

20 place a number 1 to indicate the location where the prisoners were

21 crawling through the mud and being beaten.

22 A. Well, crawling through the mud, and here in front. So it was at

23 this spot where the wooden shed must have been located.

24 Q. Okay. I'd like for you to put a -- before you give the photo back

25 to the usher, please put a number 2 at the location of the wooden shed.

Page 3803

1 A. [Marks]

2 Q. Thank you. Now, tell us what then occurred after Tuta and Andabak

3 arrived.

4 A. Then the beating of the prisoners was stopped and then each of the

5 prisoners, one after another, had to go into the shed and there they were

6 interrogated by General Tuta and Ivan Andabak.

7 Q. Now, at some point while these interrogations were taking place,

8 did a different group of people arrive?

9 A. Well, during the interrogations, no group did come, but then a

10 group of vehicles from UNPROFOR came.

11 Q. Again perhaps using the photograph and the pointer, could you

12 indicate where they came from or where they became apparent to you and the

13 others who were at that headquarters?

14 A. That was where the vehicle parked.

15 Q. Thank you. Perhaps you could put a number 3 at that location.

16 A. [Marks]

17 Q. So what occurred when these UNPROFOR people showed up?

18 A. Ivan Andabak talked to them and then they went off again.

19 Q. And after they left -- well, let me first ask you, while they were

20 there, what was happening with the prisoners while these UNPROFOR people

21 were present?

22 A. Nothing. Nobody touched them during that time. They were

23 standing next to the shed.

24 Q. Did you ever learn what the UNPROFOR people were told by Andabak?

25 A. No. That's not known to me.

Page 3804

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Page 3805

1 Q. Then after the UNPROFOR people left, what happened?

2 A. The prisoners were led into the wood behind the shed, and what

3 happened to the prisoners afterwards, I do not know.

4 Q. Let me first ask you about interrogations. How many of the

5 prisoners were interrogated?

6 A. All of them.

7 Q. Who interrogated them?

8 A. General Tuta and Ivan Andabak.

9 Q. Do you know if they were mistreated during the interrogations?

10 A. I was not present. I heard them shouting, screaming, not more.

11 Q. Now, you've indicated that the prisoners were led into the woods

12 behind the shed. When did that occur?

13 A. After UNPROFOR had disappeared.

14 Q. Who led them into the woods?

15 A. A few comrades from my unit.

16 Q. Do you know why they did that?

17 A. I do not know.

18 Q. Were any orders given in respect of those prisoners?

19 A. I was not given any orders.

20 Q. Did you hear others being given orders?

21 A. I haven't heard anything.

22 Q. What happened after those prisoners were led into the woods?

23 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Meek.

24 MR. MEEK: Mr. President, Your Honours, I must object to this line

25 of questioning. It's been asked and answered. More than five minutes

Page 3806

1 ago, this witness has testified that he was not there, that he does not

2 know what happened, that UNPROFOR came, that these prisoners were gone

3 into the woods. He did not know. Now he's even further answered. He

4 didn't hear anything. He didn't hear any orders.

5 And I object to this line of questioning. It's bordering on

6 leading and subjective, but it's been asked and answered, and that's my

7 objection.

8 JUDGE LIU: Your objection is not so for the previous one. The

9 previous one is what happened after those prisoners were led into the

10 woods.

11 Yes, Mr. Stringer. You may continue to ask this question. We

12 want to know what happened after those prisoners were led into the woods.

13 MR. STRINGER:

14 Q. Did you see what happened to those prisoners after they were led

15 into the woods?

16 A. No, I did not see what happened in the woods.

17 Q. Did you hear what happened in the woods?

18 A. I heard shooting, firings.

19 Q. Where was the shooting coming from?

20 A. From that place in the woods where the prisoners were taken to.

21 Q. Did you see anyone come out of the woods subsequently?

22 A. Our people from the unit.

23 Q. Which people are you talking about?

24 A. Who previously had gone into the woods with the prisoners.

25 Q. How long were they in the woods?

Page 3807

1 A. I'm sorry, a few minutes. I did not look at my watch.

2 Q. What did those soldiers do after they returned from the woods?

3 A. They replenished their magazines, that's all.

4 Q. Do you know why they replenished their magazines?

5 JUDGE CLARK: He can't answer that. He's already said he doesn't

6 know what happened. We are asking him to speculate. All he can say is

7 what he saw. I think you can take it that the bench will draw

8 inferences. We can't ask him to speculate.

9 MR. STRINGER: Very well. Your Honour, if I may say, I asked the

10 witness does he know why. And I will withdraw the question but I think

11 that in first asking him if he knows, then it gives him an opportunity to

12 say whether or not he does know why.

13 JUDGE CLARK: If he knows, yes.

14 MR. STRINGER:

15 Q. Mr. Simang, can you tell us, if you know, why then did they

16 replenish their magazines?

17 A. Well, I cannot tell you. They were empty. I do not know whether

18 they had lost or shot out the ammunition.

19 Q. Thank you. Now, during this second operation in Doljani that we

20 are talking about, you've been talking about Muslim prisoners. Perhaps we

21 should clarify. Were those prisoners soldiers or civilians?

22 A. They were -- they wore uniforms.

23 Q. Do you know which army they belonged to?

24 A. Part of the Muslim army. The army patches were lilies.

25 Q. Now, were any civilians, particularly Muslim civilians, present in

Page 3808

1 Doljani during this operation after the funeral of Cikota?

2 A. I have not understood. During the funeral of Cikota?

3 Q. I'm sorry, I will ask the question again. After the funeral of

4 Cikota, after the Convicts Battalion returned to Doljani, did you find any

5 Muslim civilians in the village?

6 A. Yes. There were still Muslim civilians in the mosque.

7 Q. Can you tell us how the civilians -- first of all, how were you

8 able to identify persons as being civilians?

9 A. They were seated there without any uniforms. It was old women,

10 children, and very old men.

11 Q. How were the civilians treated?

12 A. They were driven out of the mosque.

13 Q. And why were they driven out from the mosque?

14 A. Because the mosque was to be blown up.

15 Q. Why was the mosque going to be blown up?

16 A. Because it was a Muslim house of God.

17 Q. Did you receive an order regarding the mosque?

18 A. I was not given any order.

19 Q. What was done with the mosque? What happened to it?

20 A. Whether it was destroyed finally, I would not know. I was only

21 present when the explosives were attached to it.

22 Q. Who attached explosives to the mosque?

23 A. A few soldiers from our unit.

24 Q. Did you hear the explosion of the mosque?

25 A. No. I cannot tell you whether it was blown up finally.

Page 3809

1 Q. These soldiers who placed explosives there, why did they do that?

2 A. Well, I assume because they had planned to destroy the mosque.

3 Q. Did you see -- well, were any houses in Doljani damaged at that

4 time?

5 A. Yes. Unexpectedly, all Muslim houses were set to fire.

6 Q. Did you receive any orders in respect of the Muslim houses?

7 A. I was not given any order.

8 Q. Are you aware of any orders that were carried out?

9 A. I do not know whether orders were fulfilled. I only know that the

10 houses were set to fire.

11 Q. Were the soldiers doing this on their own?

12 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Meek.

13 MR. MEEK: Your Honour, I object strenuously. This calls for

14 speculation.

15 JUDGE LIU: I agree with Mr. Meek. It is kind of speculation in

16 this aspect. Can you escape this question?

17 MR. STRINGER: Yes, Mr. President.

18 Q. Mr. Simang, were you present when houses were burned?

19 A. Yes, I was present.

20 Q. And who was participating in the burning of the houses?

21 A. Comrades from our unit.

22 Q. And which unit is that?

23 A. Kaznjenicka Bojna and ATG.

24 JUDGE CLARK: Mr. Stringer, I think sometimes you treat the Bench

25 as if we're children. You know we know all this. We know that now, there

Page 3810

1 were no orders that he knows of. We know that soldiers that belong to

2 this battalion. We know what battalion he belongs to. We know that the

3 houses were burnt down. We got that awhile ago. Can we move on?

4 MR. STRINGER: Yes, Your Honour.

5 JUDGE CLARK: You can assume that we have some intelligence and

6 that we've picked up the point. It doesn't have to be spelled out to us.

7 MR. STRINGER: Yes, Your Honour. I apologise. Believe me, I

8 don't believe that the Trial Chamber has any deficiencies along those

9 lines.

10 JUDGE CLARK: We can move faster because we picked it up the very

11 first time. This is a very good witness. He answers what he knows.

12 MR. STRINGER: Thank you.

13 Q. At the time the houses were burned or prior to, were they being

14 used for any military purpose?

15 A. No, it's not known to me.

16 Q. How did the members of the Convicts Battalion know which houses

17 were Muslim houses?

18 A. There were still Croatian inhabitants in the village, and they had

19 told us which houses were occupied by the Muslim population, and then a

20 few people from our units were born in this place or they knew this

21 place.

22 Q. What was done with houses of Croats at this time?

23 A. Croat houses were not touched.

24 Q. Was anything done with other property of Muslims in the village?

25 A. Well, what was of value we have taken along.

Page 3811

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Page 3812

1 Q. What sorts of things were taken?

2 A. Well, what you could take along, what you could carry. For

3 instance, a chain-saw, new porcelain objects, or anything else which

4 brought some value when being sold.

5 Q. Where was Tuta while this was taking place, if you know?

6 A. He was at the base.

7 Q. The base in Doljani?

8 A. Correct.

9 Q. Did he see -- was he present when this looting was taking place?

10 A. He personally did not loot.

11 Q. Was he present or was he aware that others were looting?

12 A. He has seen that we had loaded our trucks with things, but he was

13 not present. He was at the base.

14 Q. And was he in a position also to see Muslim houses burning?

15 A. Yes. One could see this very well.

16 Q. Was -- I may have asked this before. If I did, I apologise. The

17 mosque in Doljani, was it used for any military purpose?

18 A. By us or what do you mean?

19 Q. By anyone.

20 A. No.

21 Q. What was the mosque used for?

22 A. Well, it was the place where the old people from the village had

23 withdrawn, I suppose for protection.

24 Q. Okay. How many -- how long did you and the other members of the

25 Convicts Battalion remain in Doljani on this occasion?

Page 3813

1 A. I'm really sorry. I do not know how many days we were there.

2 Q. Mr. Simang, do you know if any members of the Convicts Battalion

3 received any sorts of awards or recommendations, recognition, I should

4 say, in connection with the operation in Doljani?

5 A. No. It's not known to me whether some people were given reward

6 for the operation at Doljani.

7 Q. Okay. I didn't ask about a reward. I was asking more in terms of

8 recognition in an official capacity.

9 A. There was an official recognition, but to my knowledge, it is not

10 a recognition for an operation at Doljani.

11 Q. Okay. Now, Mr. Simang, I'd like to change the topic and ask you

12 now if you and other members of the Convicts Battalion participated in any

13 military operations in the city of Mostar.

14 A. Yes. There were several actions at or in Mostar.

15 Q. And before we start talking about those -- I will just go directly

16 to the first, the first operation which you can recall [no microphone],

17 the first time you participated in an operation in Mostar. Are you able

18 to tell us roughly when that occurred?

19 JUDGE LIU: I'm sorry, there is no mike. There must be some

20 problem. Can you try it again, Mr. Stringer?

21 MR. STRINGER: Yes, Mr. President.

22 JUDGE LIU: Yes.

23 MR. STRINGER:

24 Q. Mr. Simang, I'll just ask you again. The first time, the first

25 operation in Mostar, can you tell us approximately what month that took

Page 3814

1 place?

2 A. The first operation at Mostar was the beginning of the war between

3 Croats and Muslims, but I cannot tell you exactly which month it was. It

4 could have been March, April, 1993, approximately, but I do not know

5 exactly.

6 Q. Describe for us what this first operation -- what occurred and

7 what was your task?

8 A. We were called to our base at Siroki Brijeg opposite Cafe

9 Marlboro. Then roll call took place, and then we were told that down at

10 Mostar, at Heliodrom, a vehicle of our soldiers had been fired at, and

11 then we had to take a response action. And then at 5.00 in the morning,

12 it was still dark, I was assigned to Maximilian Resch Bofors. We looked

13 for a position or at least we were assigned a position from which we had

14 to fire. And I do not know when the order came. At least it was dark

15 when all barrels fired at the other side.

16 Q. Okay. Let me ask you some questions about that. You -- first of

17 all, starting with the last part of what you just said, you said, "It was

18 dark and all barrels were fired at the other side." Can you be more

19 specific? What's the location that was being fired into?

20 A. We were at the serpentines to the direction of Mostar, and we took

21 aim over the Neretva, not at this side where the Croatian population was

22 but at the other side of it.

23 Q. And you said it was still dark. Did the attack begin while it was

24 still dark?

25 A. Yes. The attack was started in darkness.

Page 3815

1 Q. And what weapon were you using?

2 A. I was at a 40 millimetre cannon called Bofors.

3 Q. Do you know what other sorts of weapons were used in this

4 operation?

5 A. Several Bofors were used. There were still people from Posusje

6 who had joined. Then BPR, that is mortars, were placed in positions,

7 and heavy machine-guns.

8 Q. You said that you were firing into the other side. Again, I just

9 want to be very clear, if you can tell us, what side of Mostar,

10 geographically, were you firing into?

11 A. I cannot tell you east or west because I usually mix it up. I

12 know that we shot across the Neretva, and later, the Muslim population was

13 let over the Neretva, or driven over it. That is we -- that is

14 practically we shot at what was later the Muslim side.

15 Q. Did you have specific targets in that Muslim side?

16 A. No. We didn't have any specific targets.

17 Q. Now, as time went on that day, did -- were you given other targets

18 to fire at?

19 A. Yes. When it became bright, other targets were named to us.

20 Q. How were you informed of those other targets?

21 A. Through a Motorola, that is through radio.

22 Q. And with whom did you speak on the Motorola?

23 A. We were announced it by General Tuta over Motorola.

24 Q. At that point, what targets did you give you?

25 A. Targets were -- there were MG nests, or from where our people were

Page 3816

1 fired at, from the direction of Mostar.

2 Q. How long did this operation last?

3 A. It was wound up approximately at noon or early in the afternoon.

4 Q. Do you know where Tuta was located while this attack was taking

5 place?

6 A. I do not know the exact place.

7 Q. Do you know what town he was in?

8 A. Yes. Siroki Brijeg or Mostar, but I do not know.

9 Q. Could you communicate from Mostar to Siroki Brijeg by Motorola?

10 A. Yes. Through radio you could be in touch when you were in the

11 ministry.

12 Q. Do you know where the ministry was located?

13 A. Well, I can only say at the main roads, when you went down Mostar

14 from Siroki Brijeg.

15 Q. Just to be clear, do you know in what city or town this ministry

16 that you're referring to was located?

17 A. Mostar is the name of the city.

18 Q. Thank you. Do you know what was the objective of this attack on

19 Mostar that you've just described?

20 A. Well, it was a revenge action, because a bus of ours had been

21 fired at, who was part and parcel of the ATG or the Heliodrom.

22 Q. Now, Mr. Simang, I'd like to ask you some questions about other

23 military operations that occurred in Mostar. What was the next operation

24 that you can recall?

25 A. We marched into Mostar. And I do not know, eastern or western

Page 3817

1 side, we cleansed the entire side after all troops had been massed there.

2 Q. Are you able to tell us again approximately when this occurred?

3 A. I'm sorry. I assume at the beginning of the war, March or April

4 1993. Unfortunately, I'm not in a position to give you the exact time.

5 Q. Okay. You said that the objective or that you cleansed the entire

6 side after troops had been massed there. Tell us what do you mean by

7 cleansing the entire side?

8 A. Well, we have driven people from their houses and from their

9 flats, and then they were put together in various accommodations from

10 where, later on, they were transported to different places.

11 Q. From whom did you receive your instructions about what to do that

12 day?

13 A. I was assigned to a group of Croats because the Bofors could not

14 be used, and these exact orders to me were given by General Tuta. So he

15 said which group I should belong to.

16 Q. The people who were driven from their houses, can you tell us

17 generally what group that belonged to?

18 A. Yes. It was Muslims.

19 Q. And what were your instructions in terms of what to do with those

20 Muslims?

21 A. We had thronged them together in a gymnasium place, and from there

22 they were then shipped off. The majority of them, because we had only a

23 small portion of them, the majority of them were placed in the stadium.

24 Q. Now, this operation that you're describing in Mostar, can you tell

25 us approximately how long it lasted?

Page 3818

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Page 3819

1 A. It was a few days.

2 Q. Where did you stay at night during this operation?

3 A. In the evenings, we mostly drove back to Siroki Brijeg, and early

4 in the morning we returned back.

5 Q. Did other members of the Convicts Battalion participate in this

6 operation?

7 A. Yes. All units who were under General Tuta's order, plus from the

8 HV a group, but I cannot tell you the unit.

9 Q. And just to be clear, you said the "HV." What unit are you

10 referring to?

11 A. HV is the Croatian army.

12 Q. How were you able to recognise members of the Croatian army?

13 A. They had patches. On our patches was "HVO," and the Croatian army

14 had HV patches.

15 Q. Do you know what actions the HV members were doing in Mostar at

16 that time?

17 A. They had the same objectives as we had.

18 Q. Do you know who was the commander of the Croatian army units which

19 were present?

20 A. As far as I know, it was General Praljak.

21 Q. Did you see General Praljak in Mostar at that time?

22 A. Yes. One morning when we picked up our ribbons. That was these

23 ribbons to recognise each other. We changed these ribbons every morning,

24 and when we collected them, that was in a restaurant at Mostar. It was

25 there when General Tuta, General Praljak, and two more people were there.

Page 3820

1 Q. Do you have an idea roughly how many soldiers combined

2 participated in this operation which you've been describing?

3 A. No. I would not be able to tell you, but I think it was quite an

4 enormous number.

5 Q. How were you able to locate Muslims who were driven out of their

6 homes?

7 A. Well, I personally could not differentiate. That's the people

8 from our unit who came more or less from Mostar. So most of them came

9 from there. And then in these high-rise buildings, the locals drew our

10 attention that there were such people living there.

11 Q. Mr. Simang, could you describe for us if there is a typical

12 example of how one of these cleansing events took place? How did you

13 actually drive the people out of their homes?

14 A. Well, I participated in it, and the others from our group, they

15 had given orders in the Croatian language. I do not know Croatian so well

16 that I would understand each word.

17 So they went out, and it was in groups that we brought them to

18 this gymnasium hall. That was not very far away from the ministry, in a

19 complex of buildings.

20 Q. Was it ever necessary to use force in order to accomplish this

21 task?

22 A. Well, what does "force" mean? Some kicks with a butt, but

23 otherwise everything went quite smoothly.

24 Q. Did you see any Muslims mistreated during this operation?

25 A. I do not know "mistreated." I do not know what you're alluding

Page 3821

1 to.

2 Q. Were any beatings -- did any beatings occur?

3 A. Yes. I just said that occasionally, a kick with a butt.

4 Q. I'll ask the witness -- let me first ask you, Mr. Simang, during

5 this operation, did you communicate with Tuta?

6 A. Personally, I did not have any contact with General Tuta during

7 this operation.

8 MR. STRINGER: I'll ask the witness be shown Exhibit number 36,

9 please.

10 JUDGE CLARK: While you're doing that, Mr. Stringer, can I ask you

11 to do something? This witness has said on a number of occasions that he's

12 not good on dates, and he thinks that this was -- this event which he's

13 describing, or series of events, took place during the early days of the

14 conflict between the Croats and the Muslims. Just to help us to see if

15 he's describing other events which have been described, could you ask him

16 if he can remember whether these events took place after the events in

17 Doljani and after the death of General Cikota - or sorry, he may not have

18 been a general but certainly a commander - and then perhaps we could see

19 it in context.

20 MR. STRINGER: Yes, Your Honour.

21 Q. Mr. Simang, before we go to the photograph, let me ask you about

22 that. You've described already the events in Doljani in which your

23 commander, Cikota, was killed. The events that you're now describing in

24 Mostar, do you know if that occurred before or after the events in

25 Doljani?

Page 3822

1 A. That was the beginning of the war, that is prior to the death of

2 Cikota.

3 Q. So you associate the attack you're now describing as being the

4 beginning of the war, if you will?

5 A. Correct.

6 MR. STRINGER: Okay. If the witness could now be shown Exhibit

7 number 36.

8 Q. Mr. Simang, have you had an opportunity to look at the photograph

9 that's been marked Exhibit 36?

10 A. Yes.

11 Q. I want to ask you, with the pointer, and then I'm going to ask you

12 to place some marks on this photograph, if you recognise any of the people

13 who are shown in this photograph.

14 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Krsnik?

15 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honour, first of all, I would

16 not want this to be interpreted to the witness. I intervened because this

17 text is in the Croatian language, so my colleague Mr. Meek does not

18 understand this. And also I would like to ask kindly that what I'm about

19 to say right now not be interpreted to the witness because it's very

20 important. Your Honours --

21 JUDGE LIU: Your request is granted. We will not interpret what

22 you're going to say into German. Or you want him to leave for a minute?

23 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Yes.

24 JUDGE LIU: You want him to leave?

25 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Yes, I do.

Page 3823

1 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for counsel, please.

2 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Stringer?

3 MR. STRINGER: I think I would agree with counsel. I think that,

4 at the very least, if we are not going to translate for the witness, we

5 should inform him explicitly that we are not going to translate, rather

6 than just moving ahead without him, but I think the best solution is to

7 have him removed from the courtroom.

8 JUDGE LIU: Yes. We will have the witness removed from the

9 courtroom for a few minutes.

10 The usher will show you out of the room.

11 [The witness stands down]

12 THE INTERPRETER: Should I stay here, Your Honour?

13 JUDGE LIU: No, you may go with the witness.

14 Yes, Mr. Krsnik.

15 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. So first and

16 foremost, that's the newspaper and that's the photograph that we have been

17 discussing, if you remember, a few days ago, and with regard to the

18 identification of General Andabak, and that is what the Prosecutor said

19 then, that this was his source of information. It's a newspaper, and he's

20 showing it now as a newspaper. And also there is a caption underneath the

21 photograph saying exactly who it is on this photograph. Of course, you

22 don't understand the first few words, but if you look at the rest, you

23 will see there is General Praljak, Vukovic and Andabak. The names are all

24 there. And to give this kind of a photograph to a witness in order to

25 identify someone, and then underneath there is a caption where it's all

Page 3824

1 stated quite clearly, I mean -- I think, Your Honour, that this is unfair

2 to the Defence and unjust, and I don't think that this should be shown to

3 the witness at all, this photograph with this caption.

4 And after that, I'm going to ask the Prosecutor to say whether

5 this is the Globus newspaper. That was the basis of my objection the last

6 time. And I'm afraid that I worked to the detriment of my client then,

7 and if I did, I did so because I have been asking from the very outset

8 this honourable Trial Chamber to give the Defence more time. We still

9 haven't had enough time to study all the 17 binders that were served upon

10 us.

11 Also, until the present day, we did not get the translations of

12 all these documents, or also of the correspondence between this particular

13 witness and the Office of the Prosecutor. We got that correspondence a

14 year ago, and we did not get a translation of that correspondence, so I

15 did not manage to discuss it with my client. I did not manage to have it

16 translated. I would have paid for it myself. I have been doing a lot of

17 things from my own pocket here. However, that is a subject that can be

18 dealt with on some other occasion.

19 But I was told that this photograph from the newspaper that we

20 have in front of us and that we have seen, that it was a different source

21 of information. Thank you.

22 JUDGE LIU: Well, we have to deal with the matters one by one. I

23 know that you raised this same issue you have mentioned just a few days

24 before, on the admission of the documents into the evidence, and so far,

25 to my knowledge, this Exhibit P36 has been already admitted into

Page 3825

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Page 3826

1 evidence. And in fairness to your client, we could ask this photograph be

2 redacted, that is to redact the captions and the content of this

3 newspaper, just so that we have the photograph alone. Is that proper way

4 out in this case? Yes, Mr. Stringer?

5 MR. STRINGER: Yes, Mr. President. We will redact the photograph

6 over the lunch break. I'll leave it for now and come back to it with the

7 direct examination after the lunch break, after the photograph has been

8 redacted.

9 JUDGE LIU: Yes. Are we going to continue with this witness or we

10 will break at this minute?

11 MR. STRINGER: We are in your hands on that, Mr. President. I can

12 work with the witness up until 1.00 or we can break at this time.

13 [Trial Chamber confers]

14 JUDGE LIU: Well, we'll break right now, but we might start

15 earlier. We will start at 2.20 in the afternoon, ten minutes earlier.

16 --- Luncheon recess taken at 12.50 p.m.

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Page 3827

1 --- On resuming at 2.25 p.m.

2 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Stringer. Did you prepare the photo? Thank

3 you.

4 MR. STRINGER: Yes, Mr. President. We've redacted all the text of

5 the article, and we can distribute those at this time, and I'll ask

6 that -- after it's been distributed, if it could be also shown to the

7 witness.

8 Q. Okay. Mr. Simang, looking at this photograph, I'd like you to

9 tell us if you recognise any of the people whose faces appear in that

10 photograph.

11 A. Yes, I recognise people.

12 Q. What are the names of the people that you recognise?

13 A. General Tuta, Ivan Andabak, and General Praljak.

14 Q. If you could take a pen, I'm going to ask you to place a circle

15 around the heads of each of the persons you've just mentioned. A circle.

16 A. [Marks]

17 Q. And now while you've got the marker in your hand, place a number 1

18 next to the person you're calling General Tuta.

19 A. [Marks]

20 Q. A number 2 above the circle of the person you're calling Andabak?

21 A. [Marks]

22 Q. And number 3 around the person or by the circle of the person

23 you're calling Praljak.

24 A. [Marks]

25 Q. Thank you. Now we can place that on the ELMO. Now, Mr. Simang,

Page 3828

1 this person Praljak, if you could just tell us again where you saw this

2 person.

3 A. That was in Mostar where we had an operation, and there he was

4 down there in a cafe when we picked up our ribbons, our recognition

5 ribbons.

6 Q. Okay. And that's something that you mentioned already earlier

7 today in your testimony; is that right?

8 A. Correct.

9 Q. Do you know in respect of that Mostar operation what was the

10 position of Mr. Praljak?

11 A. Unfortunately, I wouldn't be able to say. I assume that he

12 ordered his troops in coordination with General Tuta.

13 Q. You said "his troops." What troops are you referring to?

14 A. Those of the HV.

15 Q. This person Praljak, did you see him on any other occasions?

16 A. No, I didn't.

17 Q. Did you ever see him in Siroki Brijeg?

18 A. No, neither did I see him there.

19 Q. Before the lunch break, you were testifying about an operation in

20 Mostar in which you were driving people from their homes. And again, just

21 so we're clear, what people or group of people are we talking about who

22 were driven from their homes?

23 A. Muslims.

24 Q. What kind of places were they living in? Where were these people

25 found?

Page 3829

1 A. Well, in their houses and in their flats.

2 Q. You say "their flats." What do you mean by that?

3 A. Sort of flats in high-rise buildings.

4 Q. Now, during this operation, what was done with Croat inhabitants

5 whom you encountered?

6 A. Nothing happened to these people.

7 Q. Why not?

8 A. Because they were Croats.

9 Q. Who was in command of this operation which you've been

10 describing?

11 A. Well, the supreme commander for us was General Tuta.

12 Q. Do you know where he was located during this operation?

13 A. In the ministry.

14 Q. And again, what town or city was the ministry located in?

15 A. In Mostar.

16 Q. During this operation, were there any Muslims who resisted leaving

17 their flats?

18 A. Well, nothing is known to me. At least in those cases where I was

19 present, nobody objected.

20 Q. During this operation, did you attempt to distinguish between

21 civilians and Muslim soldiers?

22 A. No.

23 Q. Why not?

24 A. Well, we were not explained to make any distinction.

25 Q. Do you know why the civilians were forced from their homes on that

Page 3830

1 day in Mostar?

2 A. It's not known to me, but I assume so that there was a quiet

3 situation down in Mostar.

4 Q. Now, after the Muslims were removed from their homes and their

5 flats, what happened to their property that was inside those places?

6 A. Well, the same as in Doljani. What we could carry away, we took

7 it away as our property.

8 Q. Were any of your commanding officers aware that this was taking

9 place?

10 A. Yes, they were.

11 Q. And why do you say that?

12 A. Because they have seen so. We have loaded things on to the Bofors

13 and on to our cars.

14 Q. Now, when we talk about commanders, who are we talking about that

15 knew about the taking of property?

16 A. General Tuta, Ivan Andabak and Cikota.

17 Q. To your knowledge, were any members of the Convicts Battalion ever

18 punished for taking the property of Muslims from Mostar?

19 A. No. Nothing is known to me that a person would have been punished

20 for taking along Muslim property.

21 Q. Now, you've just said that during this operation, you believe Tuta

22 was located at the ministry in Mostar. Did you ever see him there?

23 A. Yes, I did.

24 Q. And now I'm talking about these days of this Mostar operation that

25 you've been describing.

Page 3831

1 A. Yes.

2 Q. Did you see him there with any prisoners?

3 A. Yes, I did.

4 Q. We can take a pause, if you like.

5 A. It's fine.

6 Q. Do you need some water? Can you tell us what happened to the

7 prisoners who were at the ministry that you've described?

8 A. A group was led to the place. They were standing, one next to

9 each other, in a row. They were surrounded by our people. They had to

10 show their hands in front of them. Then it became hectic and loud, and

11 the General Tuta took his pistol and shot one of the prisoners.

12 Q. First let me start by asking you if you [no microphone] -- let me

13 first ask you to describe this group of prisoners you're talking about

14 now. How many people and what kind of people were they?

15 A. It was men, women and, as far as I remember, one child was also

16 there.

17 Q. How were they dressed?

18 A. Well, ordinary, plain cloth. One had army boots on, army boots.

19 And otherwise, they were normally plain-clothed.

20 Q. What was your position as you were observing this? How far away

21 were you?

22 A. How far away? I could not tell exactly in metres but I was --

23 well, immediately encircling them together with the rest of our people.

24 Q. Now, you said that they had to show their hands. Do you know why

25 they had to do that?

Page 3832

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Page 3833

1 A. As I was reported, one of them obviously had an imprint of a hand

2 grenade on one of his fingers and that's why they had to show their

3 hands.

4 Q. Now, you said that you saw Tuta take his pistol and shoot one of

5 the prisoners. Can you please describe for us exactly what you saw as you

6 recall that today?

7 A. Well, as I said, they had to show their hands. Then it was loud.

8 Tuta was shouting something in Croatian language. Then he drew his pistol

9 and shot a person dead.

10 Q. Where did he shoot him? In what part of his body was this person

11 shot?

12 A. In the person's head.

13 Q. What happened next?

14 A. The same action repeated -- was repeated after two or three people

15 further down, but this time not with Tuta but with Andabak.

16 Q. So can you tell us precisely what Andabak did?

17 A. He also took his pistol and shot the person in this person's

18 head.

19 Q. Were these prisoners armed at the time that this occurred?

20 A. No. They had no weapons with them.

21 Q. So after this second person was shot then, tell us what happened

22 next.

23 A. General Tuta approached a group. He selected ten people, and

24 these people were then led away.

25 Q. What's the next thing that you observed?

Page 3834

1 A. Well, I haven't seen anything. These prisoners were led away, and

2 I haven't seen anything else.

3 Q. Who led them away?

4 A. The selected people from our unit.

5 Q. Did you hear anything after they were led away?

6 A. They were led into the ministry, and that is a small -- like part

7 of woods and so, and you heard rifle gunfire.

8 Q. Were the women and the child among this group of people who were

9 led away?

10 A. Yes, they were.

11 Q. Now, the soldiers who led those people away, did you ever see them

12 again?

13 A. Yes. They returned afterwards.

14 Q. What did they do after they returned?

15 A. A few of them have started to drink something.

16 Q. What did they tell you?

17 A. Nothing personally to me, because I would not command Croatian

18 language that I could understand. I was just being translated by Zdenko.

19 Q. What were you told?

20 A. That they had to shoot these people.

21 Q. Now, Mr. Simang, I'd like to ask you whether you at any subsequent

22 time took part in any other military operations in the town of Mostar.

23 A. Following this action?

24 Q. Yes, correct.

25 A. Yes, I did. Yes, I did.

Page 3835

1 Q. Do you recall approximately how much later this other action took

2 place?

3 A. There had been several operations directed at Mostar. I cannot

4 tell you exactly at what time. It may be that I get mixed up with the

5 months because I did not have any diary or any notes, and therefore, I

6 cannot tell you when exactly which operations were in that time.

7 Q. Can you recall any other operations in Mostar which you have not

8 yet told us about today?

9 A. Yes. There was one more operation which started at 12.00 noon.

10 Q. And can -- well, first let me ask you. You've described two

11 operations already in Mostar. Now, this operation which you say started

12 at noon, can you recall if this operation occurred after the operations

13 that you've already testified about?

14 A. It must have been later. It was -- it was later, because all the

15 operations which we've just described were right at the beginning of the

16 war.

17 Q. Now, you said that this operation started at 12.00, 12.00 noon.

18 What was the objective of this operation?

19 A. I was assigned to the Bofors, the 40 millimetre gun. We had to

20 select a target. It was a position where we fired exactly at mosques at

21 the Muslim side.

22 Q. Did you receive any instructions or briefing prior to this

23 operation?

24 A. Yes. We were given a sort of a map down in the ministry by

25 General Tuta, and on this map, there was exactly marked which houses or

Page 3836

1 mosques we should have to fire at, and accordingly, we should select our

2 positions.

3 Q. So tell us then what happened at 12.00 noon.

4 A. Sharp 12.00, the firing started.

5 Q. Did you start firing on your own or did you receive an order?

6 A. The order came over Motorola.

7 Q. And do you know who gave the order to you over the Motorola?

8 A. Judging by his voice, it was General Tuta.

9 Q. Now, once you received this order, tell us what you did, how long

10 the shooting lasted.

11 A. This firing, this targeted firing, lasted for about five minutes,

12 targeted firing, because we couldn't see anything afterwards because you

13 had the smoke. All was embedded in smoke.

14 Q. So then after the firing stopped, what did you do?

15 A. Well, we continued firing.

16 Q. Were other members of the Convicts Battalion involved in this

17 operation?

18 A. Yes. There were mortars there, then heavy artillery from the

19 rear, all what was at our disposal.

20 Q. Do you know why 12.00 noon was selected as the time for this

21 particular military operation?

22 A. Yes. Muslims each time were prepared that we started normally

23 early in the day, early in the day. And the second thing is that 12.00,

24 people are in the mosques and have their prayers, so we could catch them

25 at that time.

Page 3837

1 Q. How did -- I think you said that you fired for some five minutes.

2 Tell us what happened after that. How did the operation draw to a close?

3 A. Well, just when -- I did not say that we only fired for five

4 minutes. I said we had targeted fire for five minutes.

5 Q. Okay. Maybe you could explain that a little more. So then after

6 five minutes, how did things change?

7 A. After five minutes, you could not see the targets on the other

8 side because everything was embedded in smoke, and so we fired blindly

9 until the barrel was hot. And after then, we tried to withdraw. We

10 reported about it to General Tuta. And when we tried to withdraw, we were

11 fired at. We reported to General Tuta, and General Tuta then gave

12 permission to withdraw.

13 Q. Witness, let me ask you -- I believe earlier in your testimony you

14 mentioned a place called Ljubuski. I want to ask you have you ever been

15 to Ljubuski and is there anything about Ljubuski which you associate with

16 the Convicts Battalion?

17 A. Yes. In Ljubuski, there was a prison.

18 Q. And do you know who was held at that prison?

19 A. Muslim prisoners were kept in that prison.

20 Q. Did you ever go to that prison?

21 A. I have not been directly in the prison. I was in front of it.

22 Q. What were you doing when you were in front of it?

23 A. I once participated in taking prisoners to this prison.

24 Q. Are you able to recall where those prisoners came from?

25 A. As far as I remember, either from Doljani or from Mostar, but I

Page 3838

1 really do not recall exactly.

2 Q. Do you know if any members of the Convicts Battalion took

3 prisoners also to Ljubuski?

4 A. Yes. There was a transport from Doljani to Ljubuski. I know

5 about that.

6 Q. Do you know how the prisoners at Ljubuski were treated?

7 A. Nothing more -- nothing more precise is known to me. It's just

8 hearsay.

9 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, I'll ask the witness be shown

10 Exhibits 25.5 and 25.6 at this time.

11 Q. Witness, you've had an opportunity to look at those two

12 photographs. We can put 25.5 now on the ELMO. Do you recognise this

13 place?

14 A. Yes. That must be the new villa owned by General Tuta.

15 Q. And then we can put 25.6 on the ELMO. Is this also what you've

16 called the villa of General Tuta?

17 A. Yes, it is.

18 Q. Did you ever go to this place?

19 A. Yes, I was there also.

20 Q. For what purpose did you go there?

21 A. I had a few questions to General Tuta.

22 Q. Did you see other members of the Convicts Battalion there?

23 A. Yes, his bodyguard, this Ivan. And then two or three other people

24 were there, the names of whom I do not know.

25 Q. Thank you. Now, Mr. Simang, as we indicated at the beginning of

Page 3839

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Page 3840

1 your testimony, you're currently being held in a prison in a country

2 that's not the Netherlands; is that correct?

3 A. That's correct.

4 Q. Can you tell us what is the reason, what are the crimes for which

5 you were convicted that resulted in your being put into a prison?

6 A. I was (redacted) sentenced because I have shot at two soldiers of

7 our unit by order, and I was reproached as having murdered them for

8 reasons of robbing them.

9 Q. Now, you've mentioned that you shot two soldiers of your unit. I

10 want to ask you a couple of questions about the second of those two

11 shootings, and if I understand correctly, we're talking about a person

12 whose name was Biske; is that correct?

13 A. Yes, that's correct.

14 Q. And he was shot by you in August of 1993; is that correct?

15 A. I do not know whether it was August, but it's true that I shot

16 him.

17 Q. Where did that take place?

18 A. In the vicinity of Siroki Brijeg.

19 Q. And after that occurred, did you inform anyone of that?

20 A. After I shot the person, I personally reported it to General

21 Tuta.

22 Q. What did he say to you about that?

23 A. "I hope you have done it properly."

24 Q. What's the reason why you shot this person, Biske?

25 A. He had stolen weapons and valuable objects from the barracks, from

Page 3841

1 other comrades.

2 Q. After you informed Tuta that you had shot this person, what

3 happened?

4 A. Approximately two to three weeks later, people from our unit

5 came. We had to hand in weapons, and we were not allowed to leave Siroki

6 Brijeg. It was said that from high above, that means obviously from

7 Zagreb, that an investigation would take place about this shooting, about

8 this killing.

9 Q. Now, you say, "We had to hand in weapons." Who are you referring

10 to?

11 A. My then-captain, Ralf Mrachacz; Stephan Trupp, and Wolfgang

12 Niederreiter.

13 Q. And these people that you've mentioned, Trupp and Niederreiter,

14 who were they?

15 A. They were also soldiers in our unit.

16 Q. You say you were not allowed to leave Siroki Brijeg. How long

17 were you restricted there in Siroki Brijeg?

18 A. Approximately two to three weeks.

19 Q. And then what happened?

20 A. Then we went up to our base, and we were allowed to receive our

21 weapons again.

22 Q. Did you ever speak to Tuta again then at that point?

23 A. Yes. Later when we would get in touch with him, we asked whether

24 everything was okay for us, and the answer was, "Yes, everything is okay

25 for you."

Page 3842

1 Q. And then from that point forward, can you tell us approximately

2 the period of time that you remained a member of the Convicts Battalion

3 before you left Bosnia-Herzegovina?

4 A. A few months still.

5 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, I have no further questions.

6 JUDGE LIU: Thank you. Cross-examination. Yes, Mr. Krsnik.

7 Cross-examined by Mr. Krsnik:

8 Q. [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Witness.

9 A. Good afternoon.

10 Q. I am Defence counsel for the accused Mladen Naletilic and I have a

11 few questions for you. I shall try to put my questions in such a way that

12 I get the briefest and most concise answers possible from you. Also,

13 please be so kind as to bear in mind the fact that everything that we are

14 saying is being interpreted, so let us wait until we finish our respective

15 questions and answers and then start speaking again.

16 My first question, Witness, is: How many interviews have you had

17 with the investigators or rather the Prosecutors of this Tribunal?

18 A. Approximately four or five. I would not know exactly.

19 Q. How did this happen? How come the investigators of this Tribunal

20 came to see you?

21 A. Why, I do not know. Well, as I said, I was sentenced according to

22 (redacted), and one day they were in the prison (redacted) .

23 Q. So you do not know how come they found out that you were in prison

24 and why?

25 A. No. This is not known to me.

Page 3843

1 Q. (redacted), in addition to this verdict convicting you as a

2 murderer and thief, you were also investigated for genocide; is that

3 correct?

4 A. No. I was not there for crimes of war.

5 Q. My question was whether there was an investigation going on, not

6 whether you were being tried.

7 A. Yes. The federal attorney had made investigation for assisting in

8 war criminals, but they had to be stopped since there was no satisfactory

9 suspicion.

10 Q. As for this joyous piece of news, did you write to Mr. Van Hecke

11 about this, who is an investigator of this Tribunal?

12 A. This can be possible. I have sent several letters to Mr. Van

13 Hecke.

14 Q. Do you know how many letters you've sent to Mr. Van Hecke?

15 A. I cannot say exactly. As mentioned before, I sent a number of

16 letters.

17 Q. Do you know Ralf Rudiger?

18 A. Ralf Rudiger Mrachacz, yes, I know him. He used to be my captain.

19 Q. Did he also write some letters to the investigators of this

20 Tribunal?

21 A. This is not known to me, since Mr. Mrachacz was separate -- was in

22 a different part of the prison.

23 Q. You don't have to give the name of the prison, but you were in the

24 same prison, weren't you?

25 A. Yes, that's correct.

Page 3844

1 Q. And you have no knowledge whatsoever of Mr. Mrachacz being in

2 contact, notably in writing, with the investigators of this Tribunal?

3 A. I do not know how many letters he has sent here. Nothing is known

4 to me. He has never talked to me about it. I was in the hospital part

5 for security reasons, and he was in a different part of the prison.

6 Q. Do you remember, since it wasn't a long time ago, the 29th of June

7 1990, a letter that you wrote to Mr. Van Hecke?

8 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter notes that Defence counsel did say

9 1990.

10 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Stringer?

11 MR. STRINGER: There may be some confusion about the year. I

12 heard 1990, and I think that it's not possible that there would have been

13 correspondence in 1990.

14 JUDGE LIU: Yes. Now I think there is some problem with the

15 interpretation.

16 THE INTERPRETER: No.

17 JUDGE LIU: Mr. Krsnik, would you please clear it up?

18 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] I do apologize if there was a bit of

19 confusion. It seems to me that I did say the 29th of June, 1999. Perhaps

20 I omitted the last 9.

21 Q. So it was 1999.

22 A. I'm sorry, but as I said, I cannot remember dates. I do not have

23 a diary, nor do I have any records, but it may be, because I have sent

24 several letters to Mr. Van Hecke and to O'Brien or Rohde, and I do not

25 know which letter you are referring to or alluding to.

Page 3845

1 Q. By all means I shall remind you.

2 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] But before that, in order to be fair,

3 I'm not going to mention -- I'm not going to mention the name of the

4 prison, but I think that all of us in this courtroom omitted to mention

5 that the gentleman mentioned the name of the prison about ten minutes

6 ago. He spontaneously admitted it himself, and it seems to me that

7 everybody has failed to notice this.

8 JUDGE LIU: Well, we have had it redacted already. It won't

9 appear in the transcript.

10 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Thank you.

11 Q. Since we have the English version only, we don't have the German

12 or Croatian versions, I assume that you wrote in the German language,

13 didn't you?

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. In the English version, this is how the letter reads:

16 "Dear Mr. Van Hecke [In English] Mr. Reiser told me yesterday

17 that my captain, Mr. Mrachacz, has written a letter to you."

18 [Interpretation] Has this sentenced jogged your memory in respect

19 of the rest of the contents of your letter?

20 A. Yes. It's true Mr. Mrachacz may have told me at the door to the

21 hospital ward that he was very angry and that for this reason he wrote a

22 letter to the Tribunal.

23 Q. So my first question is: You did communicate with Mrachacz in

24 prison, didn't you?

25 A. Yes. In the first prison, in the beginning, we used to have

Page 3846

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Page 3847

1 contact.

2 Q. My second question: Why was he angry?

3 A. I do not know.

4 THE INTERPRETER: Sorry, note of the interpreter: I did not get

5 the full sentence.

6 A. Because nothing was done against the internment conditions,

7 because we were threatened by prisoners coming from the former

8 Yugoslavia.

9 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation]

10 Q. In this letter, did you apologise to Mr. Van Hecke because of the

11 tone of Mr. Mrachacz's letters and the way he wrote them?

12 A. Yes, that may well be.

13 Q. You were aware of the contents of that letter?

14 A. I did not know anything from Mr. Mrachacz. I was informed about

15 it by the lawyer, Mr. Reiser.

16 Q. Witness, how did your lawyer know what the other prisoner's letter

17 said?

18 MR. STRINGER: Mr. President, I --

19 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Stringer.

20 MR. STRINGER: -- object to the question. I think the witness is

21 not in a position to know what his lawyer may or may not have known.

22 JUDGE LIU: That's reasonable. Mr. Krsnik, would you please skip

23 this question. This sounds very strange.

24 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] I do apologise, Your Honour. I was

25 just led by the witness's answer, and he said that he had been informed by

Page 3848

1 his lawyer. So the logical question is: How can the lawyer be aware of

2 what other prisoners wrote in their letters? I think that the question is

3 more than logical.

4 Your Honour, I am certainly going to tender all of these letters

5 into evidence, and once they are read, I think that everybody will be

6 quite clear as to what all of this is about. Never mind.

7 Q. Please be so kind as to tell me, Witness, you said "prison

8 conditions." Did you get any promises from Mr. Van Hecke with regard to

9 prison conditions?

10 A. The only promise I was given by the UN Tribunal or the

11 investigation authorities that my life would be protected.

12 Q. Tell me, in your letters both to Mr. Van Hecke and to the

13 honourable trial attorney Susan Somers and to Mr. O'Brien - and we'll go

14 back to the other names later - did you not condition your position not

15 only by the transferral to another prison but also other matters? Do you

16 remember that?

17 A. Conditions? I'm sorry, but the condition was only that I will be

18 protected and that I will be sent documents to prove clearly that I have

19 acted on orders, and this is, as I said, not conditions.

20 Q. And what about your lawyer? Did he also contact the Office of the

21 Prosecutor of this Tribunal with regard to the same requests?

22 A. My lawyer certainly got in contact with them, but I do not know

23 whether he has set forward conditions. I don't think conditions -- what

24 we were up to were that statements which I would make here, if there are

25 also statements, that if there were statements made, as far as we are

Page 3849

1 concerned, that we would be able to see or read such statements.

2 Q. Didn't the lawyer extend his thanks twice, first of all because

3 you remained in the prison hospital and second -- and the second time

4 because through the Ministry of Justice of the Republic (redacted), the

5 Office of the Prosecutor intervened on your behalf, to your benefit?

6 A. This is beyond my knowledge, whether the Ministry of Justice has

7 intervened. Of course, I have expressed my gratitude to the investigation

8 authorities that I'm in security, as I have mentioned that I was

9 threatened by prisoners from the former Yugoslavia, and this of course had

10 also been written to the Ministry of Justice, and there is also a decision

11 by court where you can read all this.

12 Q. Did you write a letter to a journalist who interviewed you when

13 you appeared on television on his talk show, when you spoke about the

14 events that you experienced in Bosnia? Did you write to him as well?

15 A. Yes. As far as I can remember, I have written to Sat 1 or Ulrich

16 Meyer, if this is what you mean.

17 Q. That's what I mean, yes. Did you also seek assistance from him,

18 saying that, after that interview, you ended up in prison, or rather you

19 wrote to him saying that in your letter?

20 A. Sorry, that was how the media had presented it, meaning that my

21 statement during this TV show Sat 1, Einspruch with Meyer, that this was

22 the starting point of other research which was carried out. And therefore

23 I have said since he had kicked off all the further investigations, that

24 he perhaps should also say what the conditions are in this prison.

25 Q. You are giving me answers that are too extensive. I just asked

Page 3850

1 you whether you wrote to him and whether you sought his assistance,

2 nothing else.

3 A. Sorry. Yes, I have written.

4 Q. Thank you. Tell me, when you gave this interview, were you given

5 money for it?

6 A. Yes, I was given.

7 Q. Tell me, please, during that talk show, did you say anything that

8 led to the start of an investigation? Because the tape does exist.

9 A. To my knowledge, I have not said anything with regard to

10 investigation. I just mentioned that I knew of a person who I had shot

11 dead.

12 Q. That is Mr. Biske, right?

13 A. To my knowledge, it was Heintz. That's the first one.

14 Q. Yes, yes. I beg your pardon, because you were tried for two

15 murders.

16 A. Yes, that's correct.

17 Q. Tell me, do you remember what you said during that interview on

18 that talk show?

19 A. With regard to what?

20 Q. With regard to what you said during the talk show. I'm asking

21 about that talk show. Do you remember it? Do you remember the questions

22 and your answers?

23 A. Yes. I approximately can recall.

24 Q. Tell me, did you speak similarly to the way you're speaking today

25 or did you speak quite differently?

Page 3851

1 A. I spoke almost the -- in the same tone, if you referred to my

2 relations to General Tuta. So please ask me whatever you mean, and if you

3 ask me, I will tell you that General Tuta was almost like a father to us,

4 and I still keep on saying this today.

5 Q. I don't want to lead you, really, because there is a videotape. I

6 just wanted to ask you not only with regard to, as you had put it, General

7 Tuta, but with regard to the Convicts Battalion in general.

8 A. Well, I do not know what you are alluding to, I'm sorry.

9 Q. We'll go back to that. Tell me, how come you believe that Tuta is

10 a general? Do you know that personally or did somebody tell you that?

11 A. Well, he was -- he was introduced to me as such, wherever it

12 happened.

13 Q. Others introduced him to you as a general, and after that, you

14 concluded that he was a general. Did I understand you correctly?

15 A. Correct.

16 Q. Tell me, since you spoke in German, did you socialise with

17 everyone from the Convicts Battalion, as you would put it, or only people

18 who came from the same area that you came from, the German-speaking area?

19 A. I got along very well with most of the people who were there, but

20 of course, I had more to do with those people who spoke German.

21 Q. Of course. The only question that comes to mind is: Could you

22 talk at all to other soldiers without a translator?

23 A. No, very little.

24 Q. Please be so kind as to tell me who was your immediate superior.

25 Were you in a separate special unit within the Convicts Battalion? Did

Page 3852

1 you have an immediate superior, an immediate commander?

2 A. No. It was mainly so that somebody who was there who knew German,

3 Zdenko Ovlado, but otherwise we were on this Bofors, on the 40-millimetre

4 gun, and there we had Maximilian Resch and a Croatian person.

5 Q. What was the name of this Croatian person?

6 A. As far as I know, Branko.

7 Q. And tell me, who commanded these Bofors?

8 A. Maximilian Resch.

9 Q. Tell me, didn't you find it strange, although you did not have any

10 military experience before that or, rather, is that correct, that you did

11 not have any military experience before you came to Bosnia?

12 A. That's correct.

13 Q. Didn't you find it strange that a general would have meetings in

14 cafes and issue directly orders to soldiers?

15 A. No, I didn't find it strange.

16 Q. You took that for granted or is that the way things actually

17 happened all the time?

18 A. Well, I do not know. It was -- it seemed to be normal to me.

19 Q. I see. And now tell me, if you had a commander, and if I

20 understood you properly, it was that man called Resch who knew German. So

21 tell me, how is it that nobody more or less than a general calls you

22 directly, and even more than that, he issues orders, instructions directly

23 to you, a plain soldier?

24 A. Well, as I said, since I do not know Croatian and Maximilian Resch

25 neither did know Croatian, at least to the extent that we would understand

Page 3853

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Page 3854

1 each single word.

2 Q. Yes, of course, Witness. That's why I'm asking you. But your

3 superior, your immediate superior at the Bofors, he knows German. So if

4 somebody is to be issued orders, shouldn't it be Mr. Resch, who speaks

5 German?

6 A. Mr. Resch is a German, if you do not happen to know.

7 Q. I think we're talking at cross-purposes now, so let me try to

8 clarify it for you. In your testimony today, you said that a man whom you

9 called Tuta knows German, didn't you?

10 A. Yes, that's correct. He knows German perfectly, perfectly well.

11 Q. Well, then, my question is quite logical, because Resch speaks

12 German, Tuta speaks German. And if he wanted to issue an order, as you

13 are telling us all the time, then why didn't he call Resch on Motorola or

14 at meetings if, that is, you had any meetings? Why did he speak to you?

15 A. These orders came directly to the Bofors. Either I had the

16 Motorola in my hand or Max would have it in his hand. And when the order

17 came to Max, I was sitting next to him and I could hear everything.

18 Q. Well, that's my question. Did they come to Max or did they come

19 to you? Because you said today that you received those orders.

20 A. It may be that I expressed myself not clearly. At any rate, the

21 orders came from Tuta, as I could hear properly, because I could overhear

22 the Motorola, as Max could. So when the orders came to Max, they were

23 also valid for me.

24 Q. Thank you very much for this explanation. Now, tell me, who

25 commanded the fire? I mean the Bofors.

Page 3855

1 A. The Bofors was under the command of Max.

2 Q. Tell me, please. Did Mr. Mrachacz, was he at the Bofors too?

3 A. Mr. Mrachacz was at the Bofors very seldom, maybe two times for

4 the whole period. He was wounded, he was in rehabilitation because he was

5 shot in his knee, and therefore, because of this wounding, he could not

6 participate in a number of operations.

7 Q. And he didn't even lend you a hand in those operations?

8 A. Well, as I said, he was there on one or two occasions and he

9 handed up the grenades to us.

10 Q. Tell me, when this thing with mosques happened, was Mrachacz on

11 sick leave at the time?

12 MR. STRINGER: Excuse me, Mr. President?

13 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Stringer?

14 MR. STRINGER: The witness has testified about mosques in a

15 variety of locations. I just wonder if counsel could specify a bit more

16 clearly which specific event he's asking the witness about.

17 JUDGE LIU: Yes. That's a reasonable request.

18 Mr. Krsnik, would you please clear it up?

19 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I was about to do

20 that. And of course I followed the logic of the answers, and I was trying

21 to check it generally, but we can be more specific.

22 Q. So the event that you described a little earlier of the mosque in

23 Mostar, if I'm correct, was Mr. Mrachacz in hospital at the time or

24 receiving treatment or on a sick leave?

25 A. Well, he was no longer in hospital. I think that was in April or

Page 3856

1 in March when he was in hospital, when he was released from hospital, but

2 I wouldn't be able to tell you exactly whether he joined us at the

3 Bofors. I do not know exactly. I'm really sorry for that.

4 Q. But that operation, when you were given the tasks -- task with

5 mosque and everything, it was before April, it was in the very early days

6 of the conflict, wasn't it?

7 A. I just said March or April, but I cannot tell you exactly. Please

8 do not nail me down with months. I do not have a diary, and I cannot

9 remember exactly which month it was.

10 Q. I'm not insisting that you tell me, but was it before Doljani, in

11 any event? The operation that you described to us today, was it before

12 Doljani? It's just to get some time references.

13 A. The mosques?

14 Q. Yes, the mosque in Mostar. Yes, the Mostar mosque. Was that

15 operation that you described today, did it precede the operation in

16 Doljani?

17 A. You mean the 12 noon operation or what?

18 Q. Yeah, the event that you described to the Prosecutor that the task

19 you were given were to fire at the mosque. That is what you testified

20 today, didn't you, if I'm correct? Yes, I think it was that operation at

21 noon.

22 A. Well, that must have been after Doljani, if I remember correctly,

23 but I'm not 100 per cent sure.

24 Q. Well, a while ago you were not sure when you said that it was in

25 March. I'm not insisting but then when did the operation in Doljani take

Page 3857

1 place?

2 MR. STRINGER: Excuse me, I object to the last statement of

3 counsel indicating that the witness said it was in March. My recollection

4 of the testimony is that he said that he thought Mr. Mrachacz was released

5 from hospital in March or April. So again I simply ask that we clarify

6 precisely what we are talking about while we ask the witness about

7 specific events.

8 JUDGE LIU: Yes, Mr. Krsnik, did you hear the objections from the

9 Prosecutor? Better to have the picture more clear for us.

10 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] I shall be more than happy, Your

11 Honours, because we also heard questions from the Honourable Court. We

12 had questions from the Prosecution, and I'm simply trying to find where we

13 are in time so that we could establish what time frame we are talking

14 about, because my learned friend did not clarify fully that action which

15 took place at noon, although the witness answered the Prosecution that it

16 was in March or April, that is in the very early days of the conflict.

17 And I merely wanted to say, since he mentioned Mr. Mrachacz, I wanted also

18 to establish when could Mr. Mrachacz be there.

19 JUDGE LIU: Well, you have the full right to make clear that time

20 frame of that period. Just do not tell the witness that it's in certain

21 month, like in March. We have to make sure what happened actually in

22 March. I remember clearly the witness said "in March or April."

23 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Yes, quite, Your Honour. The witness

24 did say it was March or April, and I was merely trying to establish it

25 with Simang. I never tried to put any words in his mouth. I simply tried

Page 3858

1 to determine the time in relation to Mr. Mrachacz.

2 JUDGE LIU: Just take it step by step.

3 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Yes, by all means, Your Honour.

4 Q. Tell me, Witness, you testified today about something that

5 happened in front of the ministry. Could you give us the names of people

6 who were there, of those 40? I think -- I believe you said 40.

7 Could you give us some of those names, members of your battalion

8 you were there?

9 JUDGE LIU: Well, Mr. Krsnik, I hear there is 14, 1-4, rather than

10 4-0. Can you make it more clear?

11 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] I apologise. I am at a loss now. It

12 seems to me that I heard the witness say that it was about 40 men from his

13 unit, but I really don't know. So we can ask.

14 Q. How many men were there from the Convicts Battalion in front of

15 that ministry?

16 JUDGE LIU: Maybe you are talking about the different groups of

17 people, but you have a chance to make it clear.

18 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] I believe I already have done so,

19 because I wanted to know how many members of the Convicts Battalion were

20 there at the time. I had not yet broached the prisoners. I hadn't yet

21 had time to come to the prisoners.

22 A. I cannot -- I cannot tell you the exact figure. I have not

23 counted the persons, how many would there have been. And to come back to

24 your question as far as names are concerned, the names from our unit, with

25 their normal civilian names, I do not know them. I even did not know that

Page 3859

1 General Tuta's name was Mladen Naletilic.

2 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation]

3 Q. But do you know their nicknames? Will you give me one nickname,

4 at least, one name, the name of one soldier who was with you in front of

5 the ministry? Was Cikota there? You already mentioned his name. Or Lija

6 or ...

7 A. They were commanders. They were never with me. I was there in a

8 group. And if I remember correctly, Vlado was there, and I do not know

9 whether Zdenko was there. I do not know for sure.

10 Q. Tell me, please, Zdenko, are you referring to Zdenko who was at

11 the Bofors with you?

12 A. Correct. But as I said, I do not know for sure whether he was

13 present there. Please do not nail me down on that.

14 Q. Yes, Witness, but in your testimony, you said that you spent quite

15 a long time with that unit. You're talking about events which are not

16 easily forgettable. So I'm asking you something very simple. Give me at

17 least one name. You must remember the names of some people.

18 A. As you said correctly, I do remember exactly the event, but I

19 cannot tell you exactly who was there 100 per cent. I do not know.

20 Q. Will you please be so kind as to list us the members of the unit

21 that you call the Convicts Battalion, that is, those that you remember?

22 Before that, tell me, please, your unit that was caught at that Heliodrom,

23 was it also called the Convicts Battalion?

24 A. At the Heliodrom there was the ATG.

25 Q. ATG, the Convicts Battalion, or was it only called ATG?

Page 3860

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Page 3861

1 A. As far as I know, it was only called ATG.

2 Q. And that ATG is a part of the Convicts Battalion at Siroki

3 Brijeg. Did they make that battalion? Is that what you are saying?

4 A. Yes, that's correct.

5 Q. And together you were the sabotage unit, an intervention unit, or

6 what?

7 A. Yes. We were called when fire was on somewhere.

8 Q. And you'd do your job and return; is that correct?

9 A. Correct.

10 Q. Right. Now, tell me, please, so you were either on the front line

11 or at Siroki Brijeg every day. Siroki Brijeg is a small place, isn't it?

12 A. No, not necessarily. As I said in my statement today, when we had

13 this green stage, we were allowed to leave Siroki Brijeg.

14 Q. Right. This is not what I wanted to ask you. Let's go back a

15 little. I asked you all these questions trying to make you to give me at

16 least five names or nicknames or anything of members of your unit at

17 Siroki Brijeg or from this ATG, from what you call the ATG.

18 A. Well, I know Commander Lija, Commander Baja, but as far as the

19 soldiers are concerned, I am sorry, I just had Vlado, and Vlado is a

20 person I had contact very often with, and I know Zdenko, but otherwise,

21 I'm just sorry.

22 Q. And you do not know any other names?

23 A. No. No other name would appear to me.

24 Q. Tell me, Witness, how did you get to Doljani?

25 A. We went to Doljani in a bus, in a VW bus.

Page 3862

1 Q. And in that VW bus you arrived in Doljani directly?

2 A. No, at Masna Luka.

3 Q. Right. Now, will you tell the Honourable Court where is Masna

4 Luka exactly?

5 A. Masna Luka is -- I do not know how many kilometres away from

6 Doljani. I do not know how much. It is a place where there is these

7 little dachas, that's these weekend houses, and we stayed overnight

8 there.

9 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honours, we started ten minutes

10 earlier. I do not know whether you intend to adjourn ten minutes

11 earlier. Of course I have another seven minutes and I can go on, but

12 because we started ten minutes earlier, I do not know what your decision

13 is.

14 JUDGE LIU: Yes. We have six or seven minutes to go.

15 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] I am being warned, so that is why I

16 thought I better ask you.

17 Q. Now, tell me, if you remember, this Masna Luka, where is it?

18 A. Well, not far away from Doljani.

19 Q. And how did you get to Doljani from Masna Luka then?

20 A. The same, by VW buses and jeeps.

21 Q. Taking the road, I guess?

22 A. Well, these are not paved roads. It's sort of a rocky, shaky,

23 country roads.

24 Q. And you fetched up in Doljani?

25 A. Yes.

Page 3863

1 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... fighting before you went to

2 Doljani?

3 A. Fighting from our side?

4 Q. No. I mean, was there any fighting? You arrived in Doljani, and

5 there was no fighting, no combat?

6 A. As far as I know, the Muslims had made an attack and they had

7 shifted the lines, the border line there.

8 Q. In Doljani?

9 A. No, not in Doljani, in the surroundings of Doljani.

10 Q. Now, to make it quite clear, you fetched up in Doljani without any

11 fighting. It was only from Doljani that you were to go to those front

12 lines or what?

13 A. How was that the first fightings or what? What did you say, the

14 first fightings had been there without me being at Doljani? Or what did

15 you really ask?

16 Q. No, no. I really don't know what the interpretation is, but when

17 you say that the front lines had been moved. So it was from Doljani that

18 you headed towards those front lines; is that it?

19 A. This is how I was announced it. I was said that the front line

20 had been shifted to the direction of Doljani, the Muslims had made a

21 break-through, and for that reason we were supposed to go to Doljani. I

22 have never said that I was sent to the front line. We have marched into

23 Doljani because it was known or it was said to me that the Muslims had

24 made an attack.

25 Q. Well, that is precisely the answer that I wanted to arrive at by

Page 3864

1 asking you all these questions. And now, tell me, please, which way did

2 you take from Doljani? In which direction did you start from Doljani to

3 arrive at the bunkers or ...

4 A. Direction, Konjic, Jablanica.

5 Q. And you again took the road to advance towards Konjic and

6 Jablanica or -- no, to be more precise, my question is exactly where were

7 the bunkers?

8 A. In a piece of woods.

9 Q. Next to the road?

10 A. Well, a bit away from the road, the main road, if you mean the

11 main road.

12 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please repeat what -- the last

13 sentence?

14 A. One could not ride along or pass along on this main road there.

15 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation]

16 Q. So if I understand what you are saying, the bunker that you headed

17 for was in a forest or in a copse some way away from the road; is that

18 correct?

19 A. Correct.

20 MR. KRSNIK: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I see that 4.00 has

21 passed and I have already rounded off this set of questions. I will,

22 needless to say, continue tomorrow.

23 JUDGE LIU: We will adjourn until 9.30 tomorrow morning.

24 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at

25 4.00 p.m., to be reconvened on Tuesday the 16th day

Page 3865

1 of October, 2001, at 9.30 a.m.

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