Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 9488

1 Wednesday, 13 July 2005

2 [Open session]

3 [The witness entered court]

4 --- Upon commencing at 9.49 a.m.

5 [The accused entered court]

6 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Madam Registrar, could you call the case,

7 please.

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

9 IT-03-68-T, the Prosecutor versus Naser Oric.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you. Mr. Oric, good morning to you. Can

11 you follow the proceedings in your mother tongue?

12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours. Good

13 morning, ladies and gentlemen. Yes, I can.

14 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. You may sit down. Appearances for the

15 Prosecution.

16 MR. WUBBEN: Good morning, Your Honours, my name is Jan Wubben

17 lead counsel for the Prosecution. Also good morning to my learned

18 friends of the Defence. I'm here together with co-counsel, Mr. Gramsci

19 di Fazio, and our case manager, Mrs. Donnica Henry-Frijlink.

20 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you and good morning to you and your team.

21 Appearances for Naser Oric.

22 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours. Good

23 morning to my learned friends. I'm Vasvija Vidovic. Together with Mr.

24 John Jones, I appear on behalf of Mr. Naser Oric. We have with us today

25 our legal assistant, Ms. Adisa Mehic, and our case manager Geoff Roberts.

Page 9489

1 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you and good morning to you and your team.

2 A couple of things. We have reedited the CD-ROM containing the

3 photos of the site visit, eliminating those that had nothing to do as

4 such or which were of no importance to the proceedings, and including

5 some other photos from my collection, for example. I asked that it be

6 distributed to you in advance so that you would then come with a feedback

7 as to whether that can enter into the records as an exhibit.

8 Yes, Mr. Wubben.

9 MR. WUBBEN: Your Honour, I took a look after being provided with

10 the CD, and when it comes to the issue of being an exhibit, I really

11 wonder how productive it will be when it also includes photographs of

12 cows, vehicles, lunches during the site visit, a landing of a helicopter,

13 the inside of a helicopter, and the burned log in the forest in the shape

14 of some animal. These kind of photographs, I think, might be excluded

15 from something like an exhibit. But, Your Honours, if the purpose is

16 also to clarify the photographs as such, then it might be supportive as

17 well to provide also a kind of overview of the specifications of the

18 names of the villages or the river or the site that has been shown.

19 That's my --

20 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Mr. Jones or Madam Vidovic?

21 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, we have no objection

22 to those photographs being included as evidence.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. What we are going to do is -- I'll ask

24 Mr. Blumenstock to reedit it, eliminating some of the photos that Mr.

25 Wubben seems not to wish to see in the CD and then we will resubmit it to

Page 9490

1 you. All right.

2 Next thing is we will be handing down the -- our written decision

3 on the Defence motion for protective measures. Since Witness D001

4 appears to be sort of the next one in the revised list, we are just

5 telling you for the time being that our decision as regards this witness

6 will be to grant the protective measures sought, namely pseudonym, facial

7 and voice distortion, but not the late disclosure of the -- of the name

8 of the witness to the Prosecution. So it's only this last protective

9 measure that is not granted.

10 Any other preliminaries?

11 MR. WUBBEN: No, Your Honour.

12 JUDGE AGIUS: All right.

13 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour, none.

14 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. So I think we can then proceed with the

15 testimony Mr. Sead Bekric.

16 Usher, could you please go next to him. But he doesn't need to

17 stand up. Just in case he needs either attention with the headphones

18 or --

19 Mr. Bekric, good morning to you.

20 THE WITNESS: Good morning to you, Your Honours.

21 JUDGE AGIUS: Throughout the proceedings, you will be receiving

22 interpretation of what is being said in your language, or in a language

23 that you understand. I take it you understand. If at any time there are

24 problems with interpretation, say, either if you're not receiving

25 interpretation or you notice the level is too high or too low which

Page 9491

1 sometimes happens, please draw our attention straight away and we will

2 rectify the problem or address it to the best of our abilities.

3 Since you have a problem with your seeing, an impairment with

4 your sight, I will be doing, together with the other two judges, our

5 utmost to make life easy for you while you are giving testimony here. I

6 have already made arrangements after consultation with the two judges to

7 facilitate your being in the courtroom before everyone else so that you

8 would feel at ease without having cameras showing you walk in and walk

9 out. We agreed to have you be accompanied by your dog.

10 For your information, I am the Presiding Judge and my name is

11 Carmel Agius and I come from the Mediterranean island of Malta. To my

12 right I have a Judge from the Kingdom of Denmark and his name is Hans

13 Henrik Brydensholt, and to my left I have a Judge from Germany, from the

14 Republic of Germany, and he is Professor Albin Eser, Judge Professor

15 Albin Eser. Together we are presiding over this trial of Naser Oric the

16 Defence of whom has summoned you as one of its witnesses.

17 You will very soon start testifying, but before I proceed any

18 further, I need to -- I wish to apologise to you for having kept you

19 waiting for almost one hour now. The reason was a technical one due to a

20 -- a technical shortcoming anyway, which we have solved and which needed

21 time to be solved. We are now in a position to proceed, but before you

22 start giving evidence, our rules require that you make a solemn

23 declaration to this Trial Chamber that in the course of your testimony

24 you will be speaking the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the

25 truth. It's kind of an oath that many witnesses take in many

Page 9492

1 jurisdictions.

2 I will be reading out this solemn declaration bit by bit to you.

3 I'm reading it in English, it will be translated to you in Serbo-Croat,

4 and I would like to you repeat in your own language --

5 MR. JONES: Just one moment, Your Honour. The witness will be

6 testifying in English and using English throughout.

7 JUDGE AGIUS: I heard him answer me in English but I didn't

8 know --

9 MR. JONES: Sorry. I should have pointed that out, including the

10 oath.

11 THE WITNESS: If I may say, Your Honour, I had the miss read to

12 -- read me the solemn declaration in the waiting room and I have

13 memorised it.

14 JUDGE AGIUS: All right.

15 THE WITNESS: She read it to me a couple of times.

16 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. That's splendid, Mr. Bekric. Perhaps then

17 you can remain seated and you can proceed with the solemn declaration

18 immediately and that will be your solemn undertaking with us and then we

19 can start.

20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will

21 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.


23 [Witness answered through interpreter]

24 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. I thank you, Mr. Bekric, that is your solemn

25 declaration and very briefly now, Mr. Jones, I take it, will be putting

Page 9493

1 to you a series of questions. He will then be followed by Mr. Wubben who

2 is lead counsel for the Prosecution.

3 I don't know when we are expected to finish.

4 MR. JONES: Your Honour, I was thinking that I would probably

5 only need a day but given the delay it may be I go into part of tomorrow

6 but the estimate which was originally five hours has been revised by me

7 to 3 and a half hours, four hours.

8 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. So the probability, Mr. Bekric, is that

9 you will be with us again tomorrow morning. And then you will be free to

10 go back home.

11 THE WITNESS: Thank you.

12 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Mr. Jones.

13 MR. JONES: Thank you, Your Honour.

14 JUDGE AGIUS: Incidentally, before I forget, as regards your

15 revised witness list, please, by the end of the week, Mr. Jones, please

16 be kind enough to indicate the length of the expected testimony or the

17 expected length of the testimony of each of those 30 witnesses, please,

18 so that we can organise ourselves better and also the Defence -- the

19 Prosecution team will be able to do that too.

20 MR. JONES: Yes, certainly, Your Honour.

21 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.

22 He wants to take them off? It's okay with me. Otherwise perhaps

23 it's better -- possibly another better solution would be to leave them

24 on and switch on channel 4, which is English, and that way he can always

25 hear better what is being said. You see, I don't think he heard what I

Page 9494

1 said.

2 Examined by Mr. Jones:

3 Q. Good morning from me, Mr. Bekric and apologies from me too for

4 the delay.

5 A. Good morning to you.

6 Q. And I'm going to ask you to leave a bit of a pause between my

7 question and your answer because we will be speaking in the same language

8 so if you could make an effort to do that. Now, could you start by

9 giving the Court your full name.

10 A. My name is Sead Bekric.

11 Q. And your date of birth is 30th of September 1978?

12 A. That's correct.

13 Q. You were born in Voljevica, Bratunac municipality,

14 Bosnia-Herzegovina?

15 A. That's correct.

16 Q. And your father's name was Selmen?

17 A. Bekric, that's correct.

18 Q. And your mother's name was Mulja?

19 A. That's correct.

20 Q. Could you tell us firstly how you lost your sight.

21 A. There was a soccer field in Srebrenica on April 12th 1993 and

22 there was a massive amount of people and we had a match and there was a

23 shelling from Zvijezda, from the hill above Bratunac and the soccer field

24 was shelled and I was blinded, together with 62 other people killed on

25 the soccer field.

Page 9495

1 Q. Thank you. Now, after you were blinded in that mortar attack,

2 were you evacuated to Tuzla and then to the United States?

3 A. Yes, I was. I was taken from the soccer field to Srebrenica

4 hospital and then from Srebrenica hospital on to Tuzla and then from

5 Tuzla I was transported to United States.

6 Q. And is it right that --

7 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment, Mr. Jones.

8 MR. WUBBEN: Yes, Your Honour, it's just a matter of approach by

9 my learned friend. He certainly wants to put words into the mouth of the

10 witness but now he already started with a mortar attack and I tried to

11 identify where the witness said something like that. But anyway, I see

12 it is a triggering from my side to be precise and to advise him.

13 MR. JONES: He referred to a shelling. A shelling is the same

14 thing as a mortar attack.

15 JUDGE AGIUS: The importance of the whole incident is in relation

16 to how he ended up being blinded. Otherwise it's not relevant.

17 MR. WUBBEN: Your Honour, that's why I didn't intervene but it is

18 more or less an advice to pay attention to the fact that don't use words

19 that a witness didn't use.

20 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Thank you, Mr. Wubben. Yes, Mr. Jones,

21 please proceed.


23 Q. Once you were in the United States -- well, I presume I can lead

24 on some background matters.

25 JUDGE AGIUS: I would imagine. Usually you know what the

Page 9496

1 practice is in this Tribunal. We allow you to lead, both sides, when in

2 chief, except when there is an objection, which we will go into and

3 decide accordingly. I mean -- so unless there is an objection, please go

4 ahead.

5 MR. JONES: I'm concerned --

6 JUDGE AGIUS: Certain matters in particular, you know --

7 MR. JONES: I'm concerned my learned friend might object if I

8 lead that this witness learnt Braille, but I don't know else to --

9 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's move on, Mr. Jones.


11 Q. Is it right that you learned Braille in a short space of time?

12 A. Well, when I got to United States I started school without

13 speaking the language, without knowing how to be blind, without learning

14 Braille so I had to learn Braille mighty quick. So I learned Braille in

15 two weeks, together with other equipment that is used for people with no

16 vision.

17 Q. Thank you. And did you learn English as well?

18 A. Yes. I had to learn English as soon as possible because I was

19 like a newborn child in a world without speaking it and without

20 understanding what people around were saying so I had to learn mighty

21 quick.

22 Q. And is it right that you graduated from high school and then

23 university in the United States?

24 A. That's right. I graduated from high school, regular high school,

25 with 2.000 students who were all able to see and I graduated with honours

Page 9497

1 and I got my degree recently, Bachelor's degree in international

2 relations and global affairs.

3 Q. And have you also been involved with the American Red Cross?

4 A. When I arrived in the United States, I did not know what happened

5 to my father after I left Srebrenica so my interest was to work with the

6 American Red Cross to possibly have mail sent to him, to Srebrenica, and

7 I asked them, you know, I'm blind, can I help volunteer to possibly get

8 the information back to my family in Srebrenica? And they kindly

9 accepted me even though I was blind and I worked a lot with the American

10 Red Cross on many different programmes through three or four years.

11 Q. Were you also involved with the Volunteers of America, I think

12 they are called?

13 A. Yes. I was a National Youth Council of America with the American

14 Red Cross and I worked on the organisation that Colin Powell started, the

15 Volunteers of America.

16 Q. Finally - this is all just background, obviously - what are your

17 current plans?

18 A. I just graduated from college and on October 1 I'm taking LSAT

19 law school exam and I'm hoping to go to law school next year.

20 Q. Thank you. I'm going to take you back to the war in

21 Bosnia-Herzegovina. Is it right that when the war started, you were in

22 Voljevica?

23 A. That's correct.

24 THE INTERPRETER: Please pause between question and answer.

25 JUDGE AGIUS: Did you hear the suggestion of the interpreter, Mr.

Page 9498

1 Jones?

2 MR. JONES: Yes, yes. We are being reminded, Mr. Bekric, to

3 leave a pause between the question and answer.

4 A. I apologise.

5 Q. Take it very slowly, that's fine. Did you grow up in Voljevica?

6 A. Yes, I did.

7 Q. Now, for our benefit we are going to be looking at a map to

8 follow your testimony.

9 MR. JONES: So we have copies of the map we are going to be using

10 for everyone which we will pass around at this stage.

11 JUDGE AGIUS: Incidentally for the record because this had caught

12 my eye before, but I preferred to wait. In page 7 line 6 the place of

13 birth or the town of village of town of birth of the accused is [Realtime

14 transcript read in error: "Valvica"] when it should be Voljevica. Page

15 7, line 6.

16 MR. JONES: Thank you, Your Honour.

17 Q. For this map I suggest it's a benefit for us but that we mark as

18 we go along the places which are mentioned. I'm going to start with

19 Voljevica.

20 Firstly can you tell me the ethnic composition of Voljevica

21 before the war.

22 A. Voljevica was majority Muslim but it had some inhabitants of

23 Serbian ethnicity.

24 Q. How far is Bjelovac from Voljevica?

25 A. Bjelovac from Voljevica is about three or four kilometres.

Page 9499

1 Q. Did you go to Bjelovac much before the war?

2 A. Yes, I have.

3 Q. I'm going to ask you about Pobrdje. What was the ethnic

4 composition of Pobrdje before the war?

5 A. Pobrdje was majority Serb but it had some Muslim inhabitants.

6 Q. Is it correct just in terms of geography that Voljevica has the

7 Drina on one side and then hills on the other side?

8 A. That is correct.

9 Q. And is there a hill between Voljevica and Pobrdje?

10 A. Yes, there is. The hill was called Vis.

11 MR. JONES: Your Honours, I'm marking that on my map and the

12 various, some hills may not be actually -- may not appear on the map so I

13 suggest we mark them as we go along.

14 Q. Are you familiar with a hill called Caus?

15 A. Yes, I am. Caus is mountain or hill that was between Voljevica

16 and that area and Srebrenica area, above Voljevica.

17 Q. When you say Srebrenica area, are you referring to the town or

18 the municipality?

19 A. The municipality of Srebrenica and the town, so whole area.

20 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment. Have you ever been to -- have you ever

21 cared to - when of course before you had lost your eyesight - to see if

22 you could see Caus, this hill Caus, from say Potocari, from Srebrenica

23 itself?

24 THE WITNESS: Definitely you could.

25 JUDGE AGIUS: Is it visible from Potocari.

Page 9500

1 THE WITNESS: Yes, it is, Your Honour.

2 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Yes, Mr. Jones -- I pointed this out. No,

3 no, no. Whether this hill Caus is visible from Potocari. In other

4 words, if you look at -- if you're standing on the ground in Potocari,

5 looking towards the direction of the Drina River, whether you can see

6 this hill called Caus. This is my question.

7 THE WITNESS: You can see Caus from Potocari area and from

8 Voljevica area. It's one of the biggest peaks, biggest hills in the

9 area.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Yes, Mr. Jones.

11 MR. JONES: Thank you.

12 JUDGE AGIUS: I'm saying this because this was pointed out to us

13 in Potocari.

14 MR. JONES: Yes, indeed.

15 JUDGE AGIUS: We were asked to look at it anyway.

16 MR. JONES: Yes.

17 Q. Now, are there any hills between Vis and Caus?

18 A. Yes, there is. There is a hill above Pobrdje called Tablja and

19 then goes on Zaluzje and then it connects up to Caus.

20 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Jones, sorry again to interrupt you, but don't

21 you have a better map than this? Because there is not even a survey map

22 as such. If we could have a -- map of this particular area which would

23 indicate these hills. I mean I think it will serve your purpose better

24 and help us better definitely.

25 MR. JONES: May I, Your Honour? In fact this -- in my submission

Page 9501

1 this is actually an extremely useful map because practically all the

2 village and hamlet place names which we are interested in here. It's

3 just the names of a few of these hills which I'm dealing with at the

4 outset and it has to be said that often hills have local names which may

5 not appear on a national -- part of a national cartographic survey.

6 You will notice that there are indications of hills next to Caus.

7 There is one which case 488 metres I presume and there is another one

8 between Pobrdje and Voljevica which says 384. It would be my submission

9 that those -- those correspond to the hills which this witness is

10 referring to, but I'm really not aware whether there is a map which would

11 have all those names.

12 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Go ahead.

13 MR. JONES: My purpose -- I've been marking the hills as I go

14 along.

15 Q. Now are those places you mentioned, Vis, Tablja and Jelah, are

16 they all on one ridge or are they arranged in some other way?

17 A. There is a ridge that goes all the way from Voljevica to Vis and

18 connects up to Tablja. It's all one ridge and goes to Jelah and connects

19 up to Caus area the hill of Caus.

20 Q. Thank you. Now, you mentioned Bjelovac. What was the ethnic

21 composition of Bjelovac before the war?

22 A. In Bjelovac, there is Serbian population, Muslim and Romas.

23 Q. And Zaluzje, what was its ethnic composition before the war?

24 A. Zaluzje was Muslim.

25 Q. Before the war broke out in Bosnia, were you aware of any

Page 9502

1 tensions in the Voljevica area?

2 A. Yes, I was. I was aware in the beginning of the war, when they

3 had the elections, first of all they had the graffiti around Bratunac

4 area, SDS graffiti, SDA and HDZ graffitis. And then there was election

5 going on and my father was not allowed -- because my father moved from

6 Srebrenica municipality before war to Voljevica and he was not allowed to

7 vote because he bought land from Serbian neighbour. So he was not

8 allowed to vote in Voljevica area so he was forced to go to vote in

9 Pobrdje, in SDS club.

10 Q. What year would that be, those elections?

11 A. That was in -- I can't be specific how many months before war but

12 not very long before war.

13 Q. And what happened when your father went to the SDS club to vote?

14 A. The -- our neighbour, that I knew was very good friends with my

15 father from Pobrdje, Nikola Ostojic [phoen] told him, Selmen, what are

16 you doing here? You're not supposed to be here, this is SDS club, you

17 cannot vote for SDA or any other parties in this club. So my father did

18 not get to vote.

19 Q. And were you aware of any preparations for war in the Voljevica

20 area?

21 A. Yes. I was. I was aware. A few months before war started,

22 there was a preparations in Voljevica and there was a JNA and troops and

23 reservists practising in the Voljevica area and they had their base in a

24 school in Voljevica. The school of Voljevica, there were -- they had the

25 main headquarters. That's where was about 50 to 70 troops based in the

Page 9503

1 school and many more around hills.

2 Q. When you refer to reservists, do you know where the reservists

3 were from?

4 A. I recognised a lot of my neighbours from Pobrdje who were like I

5 said in the past were good friends with my father. And many others came

6 from our understanding were JNA troops.

7 Q. When you say that they were practising in the Voljevica area, can

8 you explain a little more what you mean by that?

9 A. Well, they had the headquarters in the school. That's where they

10 had the heavy weapons. Cannons, four-barrel anti-aircraft guns,

11 anti-aircraft machine-guns in their kitchen and where the troops slept in

12 the school and around the hills around Vis, around Krstas hill, and all

13 around the hills, around Voljevica, there was troops in camouflage

14 uniforms, dressed with the helmets, with the boots, with the full combat

15 uniforms with light and heavy weapons in their hands, rocket-propelled

16 grenades, Zoljas, AK-47s, automatic rifles. And there was another group

17 also they were dressed in blue uniforms and then green khaki JNA uniforms

18 all around hills in Srebrenica -- Bratunac, Voljevica, probably in the

19 schools probably around 50 to 70 troops and hills around 2 or 300 all

20 over the place.

21 Q. You mentioned a hill called Krstas. Can you tell us roughly what

22 village or hamlet that is near?

23 A. Krstas is a hill that separates Bjelovac area and Voljevica area.

24 Q. Thank you. In fact just looking at the map there is a place

25 Zaluzje, Prisoj, Biljaca. Is it near any of those places?

Page 9504

1 A. Krstas is above Zaluzje and the other side of the hill there is

2 Prisoj, Bjelovac, Biljaca, and other side is Voljevica.

3 Q. You've described these troops practising in the hills around

4 Voljevica. Is that something you yourself saw at the time?

5 A. Yes, I did because I was young kid who was interested in what was

6 going on and I ran around with the troops, they took me around with them.

7 They even gave me to clean their guns after they shoot them. I cleaned

8 their guns. They gave me food. And I ran around all over the place with

9 the troops.

10 Q. Now, did the tensions which you referred to involving your

11 father, that incident, did those sorts of things have any effect on the

12 local population, the local Muslim population?

13 A. Definitely did, because the -- as we know, that situation was --

14 was going on in Vukovar, Croatia and the propaganda was on television and

15 people in Voljevica were afraid what was going to happen to them. You

16 know, why these preparations, why guns, why uniforms, why around

17 villages, you know. And people were afraid what's going to happen to

18 them.

19 Q. All right. You've referred to propaganda on television. Was

20 there anything else which contributed to these fears?

21 A. Yes. Because there was -- we knew that paramilitary from Arkan

22 and Seslj were in the Bijeljina area, you know, spreading all over the

23 place and many people from Bratunac, Serb authorities, came into

24 Voljevica and they took a lot of men for questioning into Bratunac area

25 or wherever they took them to, some which were beaten, some never

Page 9505

1 returned. And there is another incident which spread the fear everywhere

2 on Voljevica when Serbian troops brought two bodies into Voljevica and

3 shot them right in middle of the village, sending a signal to us:

4 Cooperate or this is -- was going to happen to you. I saw both those

5 bodies shot right through the forehead.

6 Q. Do you know the people who were shot?

7 A. I found out those people from Glogova, last name Ibisevic and

8 they were buried in Voljevica.

9 Q. What if anything did Muslims do as a result of these fears and

10 these activities?

11 A. Male members of Voljevica were very afraid what's going to happen

12 to them, will this same thing happen to them? So the result was that

13 that we had to run into the hills, into the trees, into the woods, forest

14 and hide in camp at night so for the fear that they might come and pick

15 next men and take them, you know, to the --

16 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Jones, can he be specific now as the time when

17 this -- whether they have arrived at this stage?

18 MR. JONES: Yes, thank you, Your Honour, to ask that.

19 Q. How long was that? Can you place it either with a month and a

20 year or in relation to other events?

21 A. That was about a month before Voljevica fell. So that was

22 approximately in April 1992.

23 Q. When did Voljevica fall?

24 A. I can't be specific date but it was mid-May 1992.

25 Q. Now, if it was suggested to you that Muslims left their homes and

Page 9506

1 farms because they wanted to attack the Serbs from the woods, what would

2 you say to that?

3 A. Well, I'll definitely disagree with that statement because I was

4 there, I saw it, and I stayed behind after Voljevica fell. So when

5 Voljevica -- when Serb troops especially my neighbours from Pobrdje I

6 definitely saw they were good friends with my father and with the other

7 troops surrounded whole area of Voljevica, whole hills around and they

8 used megaphones and demanded to surrender all the weapons that the

9 Muslims had in Voljevica. So we cooperate and there was no chance for us

10 to fight with Serbs. First of all we did not have weapons. Second of

11 all, Serbs came into Voljevica, expelled the people, cleansed the people

12 from Voljevica and burned the whole village down.

13 Q. You referred to disarming of Muslims in Voljevica. When did that

14 occur?

15 A. That happened in May, 1992, maybe five to seven days before we

16 were expelled from Voljevica. Serb troops from Pobrdje across the Vis

17 hill and from Andrici which is a village above in the Vezovac area and

18 from Caus, Jelah, came from all different directions surrounded the

19 village and also there was tanks and APCs positioned in the Serbia Jelah

20 area facing Voljevica.

21 We were surrounded and trucks came to Voljevica and with

22 megaphones, demanded surrender or -- when we saw the -- our neighbours

23 from Pobrdje area my father asked Nikola Ostolic and other neighbours

24 that is we saw, What's going on, why you armed? Why you dressed in

25 uniforms? What's going to happen to us here? And his reply was, We are

Page 9507

1 here to protect you, not here to harm anybody. Two days later, the whole

2 village was cleansed and burned to the ground.

3 Q. Were weapons handed in?

4 A. My grandfather handed his registered shotgun and other -- all

5 other Muslim male members who had registered weapons, which the Serbs had

6 of course on the record all the registered weapons, were turned into

7 Serbian authorities.

8 Q. Do you know where specifically in Voljevica the weapons had to be

9 handed in?

10 A. Yes, those weapons were handed in by the school in Voljevica.

11 The truck came there and all weapons were handed in there.

12 Q. Is that the school which you referred to earlier?

13 A. Yes, it is.

14 THE INTERPRETER: Please pause between question and answer. Thank

15 you.

16 MR. JONES: Yes.

17 JUDGE AGIUS: You need to tell the witness.

18 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the president, please.

19 JUDGE AGIUS: You need to tell that -- draw that to the witness's

20 attention because he's not wearing earphones.

21 MR. JONES: We are just being reminded that we need to leave more

22 of a pause between question and answer.

23 A. Okay, that's fine.

24 Q. Now, it's not in dispute that Bosnian Serb forces attacked Muslim

25 villages and that there was a policy of ethnic cleansing. I'm referring

Page 9508

1 that's areas 2 and 4 in Your Honours decision. So I'm not going to ask

2 but that in detail just a few details to establish your movements.

3 Did there come a time when Muslim villages in Bratunac fell to

4 Serb forces, to your knowledge?

5 A. Yes. In -- right before Voljevica fell. I can't be specific but

6 around month or so before we got news in Voljevica that Glogova fell to

7 Serbian forces and was ethnically cleansed and then Suha which is in

8 Bratunac area was also ethnically cleansed and burned to the ground and

9 Mihajlevici also, which I watched myself burned before we were -- before

10 we were ethnically cleansed from Voljevica.

11 Q. Where did you see Mihajlevici burn?

12 A. I was on the hill right below Vis and we can see over there the

13 area of Mihajlevici and we saw houses, flames, smoke, burning and we can

14 see livestocks in the meadows in the area.

15 Q. And were you able to get to these places by road once you

16 mentioned Suha, Mihajlevici, Glogova?

17 A. No we could not because in -- on the border between Voljevica and

18 Pobrdje there was a barricade right there on the road. You could not

19 cross toward Bratunac. Many attempts were made from people from

20 Bjelovac, Biljaca, Tegare, to go toward Bratunac and they were stopped at

21 - -many of them were taken and never saw; many of them were taken and

22 beaten. And when we saw what happened to them nobody attempted because,

23 you know, those troops right there on the road. You could not cross it.

24 And then --

25 Q. Can I just ask you something? Those troops who were manning

Page 9509

1 those barricades, were they Serbs or Muslims?

2 A. They were our neighbours from Pobrdje, from Pobrdje area. Serbs.

3 Q. And the people who were being stopped and taken away were what

4 ethnicity?

5 A. Those were Muslims who were already expelled from their villages

6 up toward the Tegare area and some expelled went towards Mocevici village

7 and some tried to go toward Bratunac and they were stopped there.

8 Q. Okay. You mentioned Glogova, Mihajlevici, Suha. Are there any

9 other Muslim villages which you're aware of which were burnt or attacked?

10 A. Yes. Then Zaluzje burned, Bjelovac burned, Biljaca burned and

11 Sase burned at that time.

12 Q. You mentioned Bjelovac. When did that burn, as you put it?

13 A. Bjelovac burned around same time, a little bit before Voljevica

14 burned. We were in Voljevica when Zaluzje was burning and when Biljaca

15 and Sase were burning.

16 Q. Do you know which part of Bjelovac was burning?

17 A. The whole commune. Whatever they had the Muslim population who

18 successfully went out of the Bjelovac before, was lucky for them their

19 houses burnt and those who were not -- could not leave Bjelovac they ran

20 to the hills and their houses were immediately burned after they were

21 cleansed from their village. And the same thing applied to Biljaca and

22 Sase and Prisoj area as well.

23 Q. You've mentioned several times Serbs from Pobrdje who you knew.

24 Are there any names of specific Serbs whom you saw with your own eyes

25 involved in these activities?

Page 9510

1 A. Yes, there is. I saw Radomir Ostojic. I saw Sreten Lazic, his

2 brother Mirko Lazic. Ivan Lazic, Teodor Lazic, Dragan Ostojic. And a

3 lot of nicknames, I saw Mico Lazic, and I saw Milo Obrenovic. They were

4 all our neighbours that we knew from the past who my father bought land

5 from them and when I saw them, they were all dressed in the different

6 uniforms, camouflage uniforms, with the rifles, with the blue uniforms

7 and with the green khaki uniforms.

8 Q. Aside from Serbs from Pobrdje, were you aware of Serbs from any

9 other Serb villages being involved in these operations?

10 A. Yes. After the population of Voljevica was cleansed from

11 Voljevica and they ran to the hills I stayed behind with my neighbour and

12 his four sons. So we were hiding in the woods around Krstas. We saw

13 Serbian troops coming toward -- from Prisoj and Bjelovac area and then

14 from the bushes we saw them and my neighbour Ahmo Sukrija. And this is

15 the Serb neighbour that is I used to work with and was friends with

16 before the war from Bjelovac and that area.

17 Q. You mentioned that you were in the hills in around Krstas. Can

18 you just describe to us what sort of a view you had from Krstas from the

19 surrounding villages and possibly Serbia?

20 A. If you're standing in Krstas you can see whole surrounding area.

21 You can see Voljevica area, you can see Lubovija which is across Drina

22 River in Serbia and you can see Zaluzje, Bjelovac and that whole around

23 area.

24 Q. And can you tell us roughly when you were up in the hills around

25 Krstas, for what period and for how long.

Page 9511

1 A. Well, we were in Krstas in the woods and trees before Voljevica

2 fell, of course, because we were with the other male members hiding from

3 the Serbian authorities and the troops coming into the town and then I

4 also stayed after people Voljevica left or pushed out of Voljevica into

5 the hills, I stayed behind with my neighbour Ahmo and four of his sons

6 for a couple of days after the fall.

7 Q. In the period that you were up there, can you describe what if

8 anything you saw in terms of military activity on either side of the

9 Drina.

10 A. I saw troops coming from my house, from the Vis area, down toward

11 Voljevica and toward Krstas area. They were also my neighbours that I

12 mentioned before. And then I also troops -- saw troops coming from

13 Bjelovac area, all dressed in uniforms. And many trucks were loaded with

14 the goods also coming from the road that led from Srebrenica on to Sase,

15 Bjelovac into Bratunac, carrying all goods, furniture, televisions,

16 refrigerators, all kind of goods were carried and being escorted by the

17 small vehicles with the troops in them and with the rifles pointing at

18 the village -- at the houses in the village of Voljevica as they passed

19 through.

20 And when Serbian troops came to burn Voljevica, they also had a

21 lot of humongous trucks and tractors coming in there. The first they did

22 they surrounded the village they had troops on every single hill, all

23 fully equipped for combat with the weapons and all different kind

24 uniforms, surrounded the village. And from Serbia, you can see APC right

25 across the Drina River where I used to go swimming facing right at the

Page 9512

1 Voljevica and the tank also was positioned in Serbia facing the

2 Voljevica. When the Serbian troops entered Voljevica, they -- neighbours

3 from my neighbouring village of Pobrdje and other Serbs from Bjelovac

4 area and whole the commune came into Voljevica looted the whole place,

5 took the -- whatever they wanted, took the livestocks, took the tractors

6 that we had, trucks, cars, whatever they can find, took it toward

7 Bratunac and toward Bjelovac and then they torched [Realtime transcript

8 read in error: "tortured"] majority of the village to the ground. And I

9 saw my own house burnt to the ground. And they took whatever livestocks

10 we had.

11 Q. May I stop you there for one moment? Did you say they tortured

12 the majority of the village to the ground or torched?

13 A. I'm sorry, I didn't hear the last part.

14 Q. It's just a question for the transcript. It says that "they

15 tortured majority of the village to the grounds and I saw my own house

16 burnt to the down." Did you mean to say tortured or some other word?

17 A. Torched, like burned to the ground.

18 Q. Thank you. Now at this time were -- was your family with you or

19 were they were Voljevica or where were they?

20 A. When people from Voljevica were moving through the hills up

21 towards Mocevici I sent my mother, my father and my little brother with

22 the other people and I stayed behind.

23 Q. Now you mentioned livestock. Did you have livestock at that time

24 your family?

25 A. Yes we had the sheep and goats and my neighbour who was -- who I

Page 9513

1 was with, he had a horses, cows, sheep and other livestocks.

2 Q. Now, at this time, you were 13 years old, I take it. Can you

3 explain to us how you as a 13 year old were left alone in the hills or

4 chose to be alone in the hills rather than going with your family?

5 A. Well, I had a little brother who was eight years old. I had a

6 mother, sister, and I had a father who was sick. So I was -- I took over

7 as a main person to support them. So when I sent them I was hoping that

8 even though all people were cleansed from the village, we still hoped it

9 was going to last for a couple of days and when I stayed behind I went to

10 play role [phoen] my family hoping to -- you know, it's your home and

11 save what we had. So when we saw what happened to our village, then I

12 lost my hope. And then I did as everybody else.

13 Q. It might also help if you explain, if you can, your personality

14 at the time. Were you shy or outgoing, adventurous, retiring? If you

15 can give us just a sense of what your character was like at the time.

16 A. My character was I was very active person who very young years

17 learnt to do all kind of works. I always hang out with the older people.

18 I never played with young kids. I really did not like playing different

19 games like other kids. I was -- would go to with the older men, listen

20 to the news, listen what they talk about, talk about days of work. And

21 my personality was always hyper, always like the adventure, do things

22 that nobody else liked to do. You know I would take my neighbour's

23 horse, I would go ride around the hills. I would explore the hills, go

24 see what's going on in the village, main part of village, so it was

25 non-stop, non-stop going person.

Page 9514

1 Q. Okay. Thank you. Now, just a little more on Voljevica, when

2 that was burnt. What precisely actually did you see? Did you see --

3 well, if you could just describe for us what in fact you saw and how far

4 away you were when you saw it.

5 A. When -- if I understand the question, when the troops arrived in

6 Voljevica?

7 Q. Yes, when the village was burned.

8 A. Yes. I saw the same neighbours as I mentioned before, across

9 from my house down from the hill down toward my house. They burnt my

10 house, that's my neighbours from Pobrdje. I saw troops from other side

11 of Voljevica coming with the armed trucks with the automatic rifles,

12 machine-guns, dressed in uniforms, when they surrounded Voljevica and

13 when they started looting and burning the whole place down. And you can

14 see -- hear the firing massive firing going on in the Caus area and

15 Andrici area. You can hear automatic fire and very furious shelling

16 which we understood was going toward Srebrenica area, toward Potocari.

17 Q. Just two more questions on that. You said neighbours were coming

18 from Pobrdje, and then you said "I saw troops from other side of

19 Voljevica." Can you tell us what village or hamlets would be on the

20 other side of Voljevica?

21 A. That would be coming -- I'm sorry. That would be coming from

22 Bjelovac commune area and Sase area.

23 Q. In terms of any smoke or flames which you saw, was that visible

24 just locally or was that somebody that would be seen from further afield?

25 A. The smoke, I saw the burning house I saw in Mihajlevici that were

Page 9515

1 burning. And I saw Voljevica burning. And then I also saw when I was

2 crossing to Mocevici, fire in the Zaluzje area, fire in Bjelovac and Sase

3 and Biljaca area.

4 Q. You were able to see smoke in Bjelovac when were you in

5 Voljevica. In your opinion would someone in Bjelovac be able to see

6 smoke and flame in Voljevica?

7 A. That's correct.

8 Q. Were there any Muslims in Voljevica when it fell?

9 A. There was a couple of elderly people left there and there was a

10 police officer I think it was Mujo, before, he was a police officer

11 before the war. He was captured there, taken, and from my understanding

12 he was tortured, beaten and never saw again. And there was another guy,

13 his name was Sefko, he was taken, forced to burn mosque, put an explosive

14 and burn mosque down in Voljevica.

15 And my grandmother and my grandfather stayed behind because they

16 were elderly and they were based in a house in Voljevica, together with

17 the seven or eight other people. And my father -- grandfather and

18 grandmother went to look for food and as soon as they left the house, the

19 whole house was set on fire and everybody in there burnt to the ground,

20 was eight people. And from -- what my grandfather told me and my

21 grandmother, who they saw was Radomir Ostojic from Pobrdje was dressed in

22 uniform with the machine-gun who put explosives and grenades into the

23 house and burned it to the ground with all those people, all the people

24 -- old people in the house.

25 Q. And you don't need to tell us the names but do you know the names

Page 9516

1 of the people who were in the house?

2 A. Yes, I do.

3 Q. Now, did there come a time when you too left the Voljevica area?

4 A. Yes, there was. It was a few days after Voljevica was burned.

5 Q. And were you alone or did you go with others?

6 A. I was with my neighbour Ahmo and four of his sons.

7 Q. And where did you head for?

8 A. We went toward village of Mocevici. We had to cross from Krstas

9 to Prisoj and though very dangerous terrain and very dangerous what we

10 call death valley in Biljaca and up toward Pozlodnik into Mocevici.

11 Q. We will come to Biljaca in a moment. I'm not sure if you told us

12 where you were headed for, if there was any specific village.

13 A. We did not have in our mind specific village where we were

14 heading but -- because we did not know what's going to happen next day,

15 will that village be burnt to the ground also. But from our

16 understanding we were heading to village of Mocevici.

17 Q. Did you encounter any other people on the way there or did you

18 arrive there on your own with your neighbour?

19 A. When we crossed Biljaca up toward Pozlodnik you can see thousands

20 and thousands of people scattered all over the hills, all over the

21 meadows, in the barns, in the houses, children screaming, fires

22 everywhere, trying to hear families. You know, people were from all

23 different villages that were from low ground at Drina valley. Every

24 single meadow, every single woods were packed with thousands of people.

25 Q. And were these people Serbs or Muslims or something else?

Page 9517

1 A. This is the Muslim population that was cleansed from low grounds,

2 from Drina valley, from Muslim villages.

3 Q. And -- okay.

4 Now, you mentioned Biljaca and I think you called it death

5 valley. Before the war, what was the ethnic composition of Biljaca?

6 A. Biljaca was majority Muslim.

7 Q. At this time, were there Muslims still in Biljaca?

8 A. No. When we crossed Biljaca, Biljaca was totally burned, torched

9 to the ground, together with Prisoj and Bjelovac and Sase area. And of

10 course you've got Biljaca and Zaluzje there also which was torched.

11 Q. How far is Biljaca from Bjelovac?

12 A. Biljaca from Bjelovac is about three to four kilometres.

13 Q. And why did you take that route out of the Voljevica area?

14 A. We had no other options. Bratunac, the road toward Bratunac was

15 blocked. We could not go because as I mentioned Serbian troops from

16 Pobrdje blocked that road. The Caus area that we could cross toward

17 Srebrenica was furious shelling and fighting going on which Serbs already

18 took over took the positions in that those hills. And road that went up

19 toward Sase into -- towards Srebrenica was already taken over by Serbs

20 and they had positions there. That was already burnt. So even the road

21 that we -- the trail that we took was not safe at all but we had to cross

22 it in the very late hours and night to cross the very dangerous road in

23 Biljaca.

24 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Wubben.

25 MR. WUBBEN: Your Honours, just a question of clarification

Page 9518

1 towards my learned friend. He's using a map provided to us and to

2 indicate for myself, also following the witness testimony, I don't know

3 what the scale of it is, of the map. Is it right to say that a square in

4 -- within the map is one kilometre and a half? So --

5 MR. JONES: I'm not sure about that.

6 MR. WUBBEN: That will clarify a lot.

7 MR. JONES: One moment, please. The scale is 1 to 100.000.

8 MR. WUBBEN: So --

9 JUDGE AGIUS: One kilometre for every square.

10 MR. JONES: No, I wouldn't want to.

11 MR. WUBBEN: A square is not one centimetre.

12 MR. JONES: I wouldn't want to agree to anything like that unless

13 we all get our rulers out. The scale is 1 to 100.000.

14 JUDGE AGIUS: The scale is more than one centimetre here. I

15 would say it's about two centimetres, but I'm not sure either.

16 MR. JONES: Yes, if I may be allowed to continue?

17 MR. WUBBEN: We will find out, Your Honour.

18 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Thank you. Could be 1.5, as you say,

19 actually. It could be one square 1.5 because it's quite possible that

20 will a square is 1 point centimetres.

21 MR. JONES: Perhaps rather than talk about --

22 JUDGE AGIUS: We can check that later.


24 Q. Mr. Bekric, the distance from Biljaca to Bjelovac, leaving aside

25 kilometres, how long would it take you walking to get from Bjelovac to

Page 9519

1 Biljaca?

2 A. As I was at that time, I could see and the way I was I could

3 probably run it in ten, 15 minutes.

4 Q. Did you travel on that road in your youth?

5 A. Before war, I used to go there all time bike riding toward

6 Bjelovac, towards Sase, toward all different areas there.

7 Q. How long would it take you on bicycle from Biljaca to Bjelovac?

8 A. Five minutes, maybe even that much, five minutes at most.

9 Q. Now, you told us that I believe your evidence is that you crossed

10 the road by Biljaca. Was it safe to cross that road?

11 A. That road, we had a nickname for it, we called death valley

12 because when we crossed from Krstas toward Biljaca to Prisoj I crossed

13 the way right above Bjelovac. There was a hill Kunjarac, and they had a

14 very deathly weapons there which was a machine-guns, anti-aircraft guns,

15 and it was probably as the crow flies from Prisoj above Biljaca that we

16 had to cross, it was probably a kilometre or so, maybe even less. So

17 when we descended on toward Biljaca, there was always troops, Serbian

18 troops from Sase and from Bjelovac up and down waiting for Muslims to

19 cross the area and if you cross at Vezovac you're dead right there and I

20 know many my friends from Voljevica that were killed there and many were

21 captured, never saw -- seen again.

22 Q. Can I ask you, did you ever go up Kunjarac hill yourself?

23 A. Yes, I have. I've gone to Kunjarac -- I mean I was there before

24 war and I've seen Kunjarac also during the war when the action was taking

25 place there.

Page 9520

1 Q. Since kilometres may or may not be a useful guide, how long will

2 it take you to walk from Bjelovac to Kunjarac?

3 A. A few minutes, maybe five minutes, probably a distance of maybe

4 between 300 and 500 metres.

5 Q. I think you've referred to Plice [phoen] before. Was there

6 anything at this time when you crossed the road to leave the Voljevica

7 area, anything which you observed there?

8 A. Yes. There was a shooting, automatic machine-gun shooting from

9 Kunjarac, a lot of shooting going on in Bjelovac area and you can see the

10 smokes going on, smoke, like burning. I can't be specific whether it was

11 a house or barn or some -- it was a huge flames going on in Bjelovac, in

12 Sase area also. There was a lot of burning and firing from every single

13 direction.

14 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Judge Eser would like to put a question at

15 this juncture.

16 JUDGE ESER: Just to make sure, because I can't find Kunjarac on

17 the map. Could you perhaps describe: Is it direction to Kostanovice or

18 direction to Gradina or to some -- is it closer to Prisoj?

19 MR. JONES: Your Honour, I've marked it.

20 Q. Can you help just to locate Kunjarac in relation to Bjelovac,

21 Prisoj, and --

22 A. Yes. If you see on the map Bjelovac and you see Biljaca, so it's

23 between you see it's the hill between -- it's right above Bjelovac and

24 between Biljaca and Bjelovac. It's right immediately above Bjelovac.

25 Q. Is it on the Voljevica side of the road or on the other side of

Page 9521

1 the road?

2 A. The other side at the road.



5 Q. And in Bjelovac itself did you see any military presence or

6 activity?

7 A. I've seen military presence in Bjelovac right before war started

8 when I used to go, we had like a small village club in Sase area. So I

9 used to go there, was gathering. And I rode a bike toward Sase and

10 Bjelovac, you can see presence of dressed soldiers with uniforms with the

11 AK-47s, with the automatic rifles, and there were even getting on the

12 buses where the villagers who were going through right before the war

13 started. And then also when we were in Sase at the -- in the village

14 club, there was a spray of automatic shooting from Andrici area so we

15 were forced to disperse from that place and run in every single

16 directions.

17 Q. In Sase, what was its ethnic composition before the war?

18 A. In Sase it was mixed but majority of Sase, I believe, is Muslim.

19 I got -- you have villages around Sase commune the majority were Muslim.

20 Q. And that road you described going up to Biljaca and then up to

21 Sase, in May 1992, could you take that road to get to Srebrenica?

22 A. Absolutely not, because first of all you could not cross if you

23 were coming from Voljevica. In Bjelovac you could not go towards Sase.

24 It was blocked. And the trail that we took toward Biljaca, you could not

25 take it because they -- all the killings that happened in Biljaca were

Page 9522

1 from Serbs coming down patrolling the area from Sase and from Bjelovac

2 and Muslim population in Sase were already ethnically cleansed and burned

3 -- their houses burned to the ground.

4 Q. I want to deal now with Mocevici. Whether you arrived there, did

5 you finds any other people there?

6 A. When I arrived to Mocevici there were thousands of people in

7 every single place you can look at. It's like sketches everywhere. And

8 all the houses in Mocevici were packed with the refugees and my aunt had

9 -- my aunt's husband had a family in Mocevici and that's where I was

10 located, and where I found my family there. And every single place,

11 every single corner was packed with refugees. And you know, it was -- at

12 night gets very cold and the people like myself and my family, we only

13 had what we could carry.

14 Q. Thank you. Now, what were the Serb villages, if any, which were

15 in the immediate area of Mocevici?

16 A. Yes in the surrounding Mocevici area there was Oparci, there was

17 other side, Spat, and then towards Osmace -- I mean towards Srebrenica

18 there is Pribicevac there is Brezani in the direction of Osmace and

19 there's Radijevci, in that area to where immediately close to Mocevici

20 and other villages down below. There is Sikirici and so on, their

21 commune.

22 Q. When you say "below," what are you referring to?

23 A. If you -- if you have a map and if you look at where Mocevici is

24 and right above other side, there is also Brezovica and Pozlodnik also.

25 And right cross on the other side there is a hill called Oparci and below

Page 9523

1 Oparci there is Muslim village called Zapolje which was already

2 ethnically cleansed and torched to the ground. And on those hills were

3 heavy artillery based and heavy weapons that were continuously shooting

4 towards refugees in that area.

5 Q. Okay. Well, if someone were to say that in June 1992 -- first of

6 all, when did you arrive in Mocevici?

7 A. I arrived in Mocevici beginning of June 1992.

8 Q. So if someone were to say that in that period Muslims were not

9 unable but were going back and forthwith their cattle to the market in

10 Fakovici, what would you say to that?

11 A. That would be absolutely impossible. Where the refugees were

12 pushed in that rugged area we had no, absolutely, possibility to go down

13 toward the river, towards Drina in any kind direction. Not toward

14 Sikiric, not toward Fakovici, not toward Voljevica. Not toward any

15 single direction. We were completely up in the mountains, in the hills,

16 surrounded.

17 Q. Facing the other direction, were Muslims able to get to

18 Srebrenica through Pribicevac?

19 A. Absolutely no, not. Because we had no contact whatsoever with

20 Srebrenica at that time. People panicking, you know, what was going to

21 happen, because we were cleansed from our villages and we had no contact

22 with the outside world. Like, if you went to Srebrenica you could not

23 contact nobody. We didn't even know what the fate was, what's going on

24 in Srebrenica. We didn't know what was going on around us and we knew

25 that very stronghold in Pribicevac was there that was blocking our

Page 9524

1 crossing towards Srebrenica. And toward Osmace, there is Brezani. You

2 could hear continuous shooting and shelling from Brezani area and

3 Pribicevac.

4 On other side, where I was close to is Mocevici where I was

5 staying in. Other side there is Oparci, hill of Oparci, which was

6 continuously non-stop shooting in that area toward refugees in those

7 hills.

8 Q. When you --

9 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Jones, one moment. I would like to know

10 whether he is in a position to tell us at least whether at this time when

11 he arrived in Mocevici, Mocevici was connected by telephone with the rest

12 of Yugoslavia.

13 THE WITNESS: I'm sorry, Your Honour, if Mocevici was --

14 JUDGE AGIUS: Was connected by telephone, whether there was

15 telephone connection, telephone lines in Mocevici connected to the rest

16 of Yugoslavia.

17 THE WITNESS: Mocevici is a very, very hilly area. Even before

18 the war there was no chance by having telephone in that area. Not those

19 villages in that area had telephones, not even the village where I was in

20 which was very flat and very close to Bratunac, very close to Serbia, had

21 telephone lines.

22 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Jones.

23 MR. JONES: Yes.

24 Q. You described the situation -- actually firstly for clarity maybe

25 it doesn't need clarification but referring to Pribicevac and Brezovica,

Page 9525

1 are these -- you described Pribicevac as a stronghold. Are these Serb

2 areas or Muslim?

3 A. It was Serbian areas.

4 Q. You mentioned Radijevici. What was the situation in relation to

5 Radijevici?

6 A. If you look at that area, like as I mentioned before, Oparci

7 village area and all those other villages surround that area and down

8 below there is a Sikiric, and those Oparci and Radijevici and those other

9 villages in that area I had no other way to get support. It was

10 continuous, continuous fighting, shooting coming from that area, shelling

11 and anti-aircraft shooting coming from that area and they had Mocevici

12 above them and the only way they could got support is down from below

13 which is Sikirici. And that's -- from where I know that is from talking

14 to my neighbours from my village who were in the Mocevici area. They

15 were discussing how Serbs in that area having all these weapons, where

16 they getting it from and the discussion was that they getting it down

17 below from Sikirici area.

18 Q. Are you familiar with a place called Ratkovici?

19 A. Yes, Ratkovici is in that area also, Ratkovici was in that area.

20 Q. Was that Serb or Muslim at this time?

21 A. That was Serb village. Everybody feared Ratkovici, that area

22 there. Because the fear was the Serbs already have Bjelovac, Serbs have

23 the area Sase and Voljevica and all along the Drina valley. If they

24 continue pushing from that side from Sikiric and from Oparci and from

25 Haliljovici, then if Mocevici falls then the thousands and thousands of

Page 9526

1 people would be endangered. There have no place to go to.

2 Q. And again, as far as the information about those fears, about

3 Ratkovici and the situation for those in Mocevici was concerned, what was

4 your source for that?

5 A. That's from talking to my neighbours, because as I said before, I

6 was always intruder, liked to listen to what all the men talk so I go

7 around the village first I saw my neighbour Ahmo and his sons and they

8 would be discussing with the other men what's going to happen to them and

9 what was going on and that was my source. They were discussing between

10 each other.

11 Q. Thank you. Now, in Mocevici, was there any sort of Defence

12 organised among the Muslims?

13 A. From when I was in Mocevici, there was Vekas Husic who was from

14 Mocevici, who organised defence from all the men from Mocevici. And when

15 men arrived from other villages that were cleansed arrived in Mocevici

16 area, he organised them to stand guard around Mocevici and that area from

17 -- between Muslims and Serbs where the shooting was coming from the

18 Oparci area especially, and Ratkovici.

19 Q. It's just being pointed out to me for the transcript it's Vekas

20 Husic. But we can correct those names at the end as well as Pribicevac.

21 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.


23 Q. Now did the men who you saw and who were involved in the defence

24 in Mocevici, did they have uniforms?

25 A. Absolutely not. The people the thousands -- the people from my

Page 9527

1 own village, the people that I used to see every day. That was the

2 people who scared people, weak people, who were ethnically cleansed to

3 the -- to the rugged hills where they had nothing and no one that they

4 know in those villages. They were there and they were told they must

5 stand guard to protect it. They had -- just like we do, jeans or ragged

6 pants or any kind of rubber shoes, T-shirt. That was what was known as

7 defender of the area. And whatever weapons they had they had to use it.

8 It was not even possibility to identify those people as soldiers.

9 Q. Did you see these men going into action when you were there in

10 Mocevici?

11 A. Yes, I did. I've seen people from my village and other villages

12 going to take over very strong hill of Oparci which they attempted a few

13 times, no success to take over because there was no match between

14 anti-aircraft gun and a shotgun so it was a lot of wounded and dead being

15 carried through but there was no success taking over that hill.

16 Q. I want to ask you a question about Osmace. Are you familiar with

17 Osmace?

18 A. Yes, I am.

19 Q. At this time, do you know whether that was physically connected

20 to Srebrenica?

21 A. Absolutely not. Because Osmace the road that was going from

22 Kragljevoda towards Vlasenica is a road that goes through Kragljevoda to

23 Zeleni Jadar and to Vlasenica military area was already taken by Serbs

24 and was a very strong Serbian positions in Brezani which was impossible

25 to cross to Srebrenica.

Page 9528

1 Q. Now, did you -- whether you were in Mocevici did you actually

2 return to Voljevica at any stage?

3 A. Yes, I did. I heard people from my village discussing return to

4 regain food or supplies because nobody had nothing. And I told my mother

5 that was they going to prepare the trip to try to regain food. And my

6 mother and I went with the other people from my village to the hills

7 toward Voljevica, same way that we came from, and we got to Voljevica.

8 The trip was from hell. You had to travel dark hours. You

9 couldn't use any torch or light or nothing whatsoever. So basically you

10 got to walk as a crow, very slow and then descend to Biljaca and then on

11 to Voljevica. When we got to Biljaca -- whether the Serbs knew we were

12 there or not, we crossed Prisoj from Biljaca into Prisoj. There was a

13 very fierce shooting coming from Kunjerac area toward Prisoj. So we will

14 had to like lay there for hours waiting for it's over. I cannot say they

15 knew we were there or that was their routine.

16 So when we got to Voljevica, I could not get to my house up there

17 because of the dangers. That's where Serb positions were, above the

18 house. And I went to my neighbour's house and I got some food from there

19 with my mother and we met and slowly through the hills returned to very

20 dangerous area and mined area towards Mocevici again.

21 Q. Thank you. Now, did there come a time when you left Mocevici for

22 good?

23 A. Yes. I was talking to my -- my neighbour Ahmo and his sons, and

24 they stay at this guy's house his name is Sukrija. He's from Stozersko.

25 He was -- he introduced -- people discussing what's going to happen to

Page 9529

1 the people, where do we go from here? And when these Sukrija guy

2 introduced himself he said I'm a fighter from Hakija Meholjic's defence

3 force it was organised. I can attempt to guide you guys to Srebrenica.

4 I haven't been there, I'm not from there. I can attempt to take you but

5 you're going to take your chances, same as I do. If somebody happens to

6 me it's going to happen to you. So we can attempt it. So we had no

7 other choices: Stay there in the cold open air or attempt to cross into

8 Srebrenica.

9 Q. Did you attempt the journey?

10 A. Yes, we did. We took the trip with Sukrija being the guide on to

11 through Mocevici, Predola, Stozersko and Skenderovici. And then we had

12 to cross a canyon which is very, very, very steep in the middle of the

13 day. You could not see nothing that's how dark it is. It's a very rocky

14 area and between Zeleni Jadar and Pribicevac.

15 So we started descending into the canyon, when Serbs discovered

16 us. And there was a very, very dangerous road to cross -- the canyon to

17 cross and when they start firing at us from anti-aircraft machine

18 aircraft -- anti-aircraft machine-gun and all different weapons at us,

19 that's when people start screaming and running all different directions.

20 And my little brother was starting to run in all different directions

21 from where I was, and I had to run after him to calm him down. And

22 that's when I saw first time in Kunjerac with wounded people and

23 screaming people, mothers, children, bags everywhere, and then I took my

24 brother and we ran towards Srebrenica to the hills, left my father and my

25 mother in canyon and we made it to Srebrenica.

Page 9530

1 Q. And what was -- when was this, firstly, more or less?

2 A. Sorry.

3 Q. When was this approximately, the day?

4 A. That was in June 1992.

5 Q. And what was Srebrenica like whether you found it?

6 A. I used to be -- I used to go to Srebrenica before war. I had a

7 sister lived in Srebrenica municipality. Srebrenica used to be a very

8 small town, very happening town with small cafes, restaurants, coffee

9 shops. And when we arrived in Srebrenica it was like a ghost town, dead,

10 no one there. I walked through the whole Srebrenica and I don't think I

11 saw one person in the whole of Srebrenica. Many houses were torched,

12 burned, looted, glass broken, the smell of smoke around Srebrenica. All

13 the places that I used to know, boutiques, restaurants, cafes, everything

14 was empty, looted, dead. Dead -- deadly town.

15 Q. Thank you. Was anyone organising anything in the town as far as

16 you could tell? Was anybody receiving refugees or trying to organise

17 them?

18 A. From our understanding only person that had defence at that time

19 when I -- we arrived was Hakija Meholjic. They had organised a defence

20 force and -- when Serbs left Srebrenica.

21 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Jones, just to regulate yourself we have

22 roughly another eight, ten minutes before we have a break so --

23 MR. JONES: That's perfect.

24 JUDGE AGIUS: Just keep that in mind and if we need to make it 10

25 or 12 we will make it 10 or 12 obviously.

Page 9531

1 MR. JONES: I think I can finish in about eight minutes this

2 subject.

3 Q. Where did you stay in Srebrenica?

4 A. We found a house right next to the hospital in Srebrenica. My

5 family and another family got into the house and we stayed there for the

6 time being, at the time I was in Srebrenica.

7 Q. Were you aware of a PTT building in --

8 A. Yes, I was. I knew about PTT before the war and during the war.

9 Q. And where was that in relation to where you were staying?

10 A. I was maybe a hundred metres from the house, right across from

11 hospital.

12 Q. And how long did you stay in that house?

13 A. I stayed from June 1992 until I was blinded in April 1993.

14 Q. And can you tell us who stayed in the house with you from the

15 beginning through to April 1993?

16 A. When we arrived in Srebrenica we had two families my family and

17 another family. By the time I left Srebrenica there was probably about

18 50 people in the house. It was packed with people. And the house was

19 disgustingly dirty. We didn't have no stoves. We didn't have no water,

20 no electricity. Dirty, lice, all kinds of possibility, dirty people you

21 could see was in that house. Not only that house but everywhere you go

22 in Srebrenica.

23 Q. The people, the 50 people, who were there with you, where were

24 they from?

25 A. In that house where I was from we had people from Zvornik

Page 9532

1 municipality, we had people from Zepa, we had people from Visegrad, we

2 had people in Bratunac municipality, from every single place. From

3 Vlasenica.

4 Q. Did you discuss amongst you what had happened and how you came to

5 be in Srebrenica?

6 A. Yes. We have. And it's exactly same what happened to my people

7 in my village. People from Zvornik municipality was over -- was exactly

8 the same what happened to us. They were forced to surrender their

9 weapons. Many people were -- who could escape escaped, many of them

10 killed, many of them never returned their homes torched. That happened

11 all the way from Zvornik to Bratunac municipality to Visegrad, Zepa and

12 Vlasenica. All people that were there.

13 Q. During the time that you were in Srebrenica, did you just stay in

14 the house or did you move around the town or the area?

15 A. I was a very curious kid, very rowdy kid, and I was also a very

16 caring person who took care my family. So when my family came into

17 Srebrenica, there was a -- we had no food whatsoever so I was forced to

18 go around Voljevica -- around Srebrenica around the apartments, around

19 the houses, look for food, for clothing, for anything I could find for my

20 family to survive and talked to many people around Srebrenica who I know

21 that arrived later.

22 Q. Did you have any other relatives in the Srebrenica area?

23 A. Yes, I have. I had a sister who lived in Potocari area and I had

24 a sister that lived in Ljeskovik which is south of Srebrenica, probably

25 15 to 20 kilometres.

Page 9533

1 Q. And did you try and see them?

2 A. When I arrived in Srebrenica, my first thought was to cross

3 towards my sister in Ljeskovik and to go see her so she can possibly give

4 us -- because her village did not burn at that time. So we were hoping

5 there can be possibility for me to cross to her village and possibly

6 later on also bring my family there so when I spoke to people in

7 Srebrenica, they said it would be impossible to cross it by regular road,

8 you had to be very careful how you cross because Serbian troops all the

9 roads that was leaving from Kragljevoda to Vlasenica was taken by Serbian

10 troops and all the Muslim villages in that area were torched and the

11 Serbian positions. And if you attempt it was impossible to cross it but

12 if you attempt it you risking your life and you get across totally

13 different direction than you would normally cross it.

14 Q. Thank you. So be it be right that in the course of trying to see

15 your sister and visiting relatives you became aware which areas were

16 accessible and which areas were blocked?

17 A. That's correct..

18 Q. Did you become aware which persons or groups held different areas

19 around Srebrenica?

20 A. Yes, I was. That in the -- in the beginning of war, we know that

21 in Srebrenica it was Hakija Meholjic and later on it was Akif Ustic. In

22 the south part of the Srebrenica area there was Nedzad Bektic. And then

23 also in Suceska, where my father is from, there was Tursunovic had his

24 defence up there.

25 Q. That's a good time for the break?

Page 9534

1 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. We will have a 25 minute break.

2 Usher, you need to organise the assistance for the witness. Okay. Thank

3 you.

4 --- Recess taken at 11.14 a.m.

5 --- On resuming at 11.52 a.m.

6 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's continue. Let's wait for the accused. All

7 right. Let's continue. Sorry for the delay. Of course, Madam

8 Registrar, the time lost will be accredited to --

9 MR. JONES: Thank you, Your Honour.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Jones.


12 Q. Now, Mr. Bekric, before the break, you mentioned Hakija Meholjic.

13 Where was he based?

14 A. Hakija Meholjic from my understanding from talking to people in

15 Sukrija, from Stozersko, he was located outside Srebrenica in the hills

16 at the beginning of the war.

17 Q. Did he remain outside in the hills?

18 A. No. He got sent down to Srebrenica soon as refugees started

19 coming down into the town. The first group arrived when I arrived in --

20 other people with me, that's when Hakija Meholjic was in Srebrenica with

21 his fighters.

22 Q. And where in the town precisely were they based, if you know?

23 A. In Hotel Domavija.

24 Q. Now, you Hakija and his fighters, you said that Sukrija was one

25 of Hakija's men. What if anything did Hakija's men or fighters say about

Page 9535

1 the defence of Srebrenica?

2 A. They from what I understood that Srebrenica was cut off from

3 outside, there was no connection, no contact with the other hamlets and

4 villages around. Hakija is the one who organised the defence of

5 Srebrenica and he is going to be the commander of the forces in

6 Srebrenica at that time.

7 Q. And how many people, how many men, did -- were in Hakija's unit,

8 if you know? This is -- I'm talking about June 1992 when you arrived.

9 A. I would say anywhere between 200 to 300 soldiers, fighters.

10 Q. Did that number remain the same throughout 1992 or did it change?

11 A. Well, actually, in the beginning of the war, he did not have --

12 by the time I left Srebrenica I would say he had about 2 or 300 fighters.

13 In the beginning what happened is when he had a few gathered men as a

14 defence then many refugees from Bratunac municipality when they arrived

15 joined Hakija Meholjic's group all the time.

16 Q. Did anyone from your village, Voljevica, join his unit?

17 A. Yes he had a few men from Voljevica joined Hakija Meholjic's

18 group.

19 Q. Do you know the names of any of those men?

20 A. Yes, I do. There was Hazim from Voljevica who was in his group,

21 there was Muhamed from Voljevica who was in his group and in the

22 beginning there was Omer in his group.

23 Q. Did Hazim from Voljevica have a nickname?

24 A. Yes, he did. We called him Mercury before the war and after the

25 war.

Page 9536

1 Q. I'm going to come back to him in a moment. Did you hear talk

2 about another group of fighters in the town of Srebrenica at this stage?

3 A. Yes, later on we also -- the group that is organising was Akif

4 Ustic who organised his group after Meholjic and then continued time in

5 Srebrenica was Akif with his troops until he was killed.

6 Q. Do you know roughly when he was killed?

7 A. I would say late 1992 sometimes in the ambush in the village of

8 Zaluzje.

9 Q. You've mentioned Hazim from Voljevica. Was he with Akif when he

10 was killed or was he somewhere else?

11 A. Sorry for cutting you off. Hazim from Voljevica was first in

12 Hakija Meholjic's group and then him and Enver from Voljevica -- and

13 another man from Voljevica, we called him Ibro, was in Akif Ustic's group

14 and came also from Voljevica was in his group. And when Akif was

15 ambushed, they were killed and Hazim from Voljevica escaped that ambush.

16 Q. Now, going back to Hakija for a moment, were you aware of him

17 being under any other commander at that time?

18 A. Absolutely not.

19 Q. When I say at that time, at any time, were you aware of him being

20 placed under the command of any other commander?

21 A. Hakija Meholjic was one of the first who organised defence and he

22 -- all through the time in Srebrenica when I was there Hakija had his

23 group and he was based in Domavija and he did at his will what he wanted

24 to do. He had no commander. Nobody could command Hakija Meholjic. If

25 anybody considered himself commander it was Hakija Meholjic.

Page 9537

1 Q. Again, how do you know what that? What's the basis for you

2 saying that?

3 A. Because a lot of the men like I said Hazim from Voljevica,

4 Mercury was good friends with my father. He spoke to my father before

5 the war and during the war. He would come see us and he would explain

6 what was going on in Srebrenica who was the leader, who was the commander

7 he was based and also another male members from my village who were

8 talking was going on.

9 Q. And Akif Ustic, same question: Were you aware of him being

10 placed under any other commander at any stage?

11 A. Absolutely not. Akif Ustic and Hakija Meholjic were totally

12 commanders and Akif had his group and Hakija Meholjic had his group.

13 Q. You mentioned Zulfo Tursunovic, who had his defence up in

14 Suceska, as you put it. Can you describe for us what Zulfo was like? Or

15 firstly did you have occasion to encounter Zulfo?

16 A. In time we arrived in Srebrenica and later on, when I attempted

17 to go to Suceska to cross where my father was born, I've seen Zulfo and

18 Zulfo had totally command of Suceska area all his men and villages

19 Suceska. But there was no -- the road going to Suceska was not open at

20 that time. You could not cross it. So I took my own risk, I took the

21 risk to go to Suceska that's where I saw Zulfo. And also I know Zulfo

22 before the war. He was a distant relative of my father.

23 Q. Actually just one point out to clarify. You said how Zulfo had

24 his defence up in Suceska. In the past you also talked about someone

25 being down by the Drina. Just for clarification, when you say up and

Page 9538

1 down are you referring to hills and valleys, or north, south? Just so we

2 can be a bit clear.

3 A. When I say up in Suceska that means up in the hills of --

4 Srebrenica municipality. Up all the way up in the hills which I suppose

5 to be western side of the enclave Srebrenica.

6 Q. And then you also mentioned Nedzad Bektic. What area was he in

7 again if you can remind us in that period June 1992?

8 A. He was in the south part of Srebrenica in the Kragljevoda area.

9 The first time I got to know who Nedzad Bektic was when I finally made

10 attempt to cross -- when I made it to my sister's village, villages were

11 talking about having a commander at that area was Nedzad Bektic.

12 Q. In June 1992, was the -- was the -- this area connected to

13 Srebrenica?

14 A. The south part of Srebrenica was absolutely not connected because

15 many refugees attempt to cross from that area toward Srebrenica it was

16 impossible because Serbs had their front lines all the way from

17 Kragljevoda on to toward Milici it was totally -- the road was completely

18 blocked and they had their front lines there.

19 Q. Can you tell us in this period and indeed afterwards, in this

20 second half of 1992, what were you doing to get food? How were you

21 obtaining food?

22 A. When there was a -- first of all we attempted many times to go to

23 our own villages to Voljevica through the hills around the Obadi and then

24 on to Vezovac into Voljevica. Many attempts were made. Some made it. I

25 made a couple of times to Voljevica. There was landmines everywhere and

Page 9539

1 many people were wounded. Many people were killed many people were

2 captured when we went to get the food. And then the time I got to also

3 look for food when there was action like everybody else was. There was

4 action for food. That's where you got food.

5 Q. So is it right that you were travelling around the enclave,

6 around this area quite a bit in the second half of 1992?

7 A. I was all over the place, all over the enclave. I don't think

8 there's one part of the enclave I don't know. Every single corner, every

9 single possibility to get food to travel through I done it.

10 Q. Okay. Now, did you know Naser Oric either during or before the

11 war?

12 A. I saw Naser Oric once or twice in Voljevica before war.

13 Q. And what did you know of him and his situation, if anything, in

14 June-July 1992?

15 A. Well, in Voljevica before we were cleansed from Voljevica we

16 heard that Arkan's paramilitary was attempting a huge attack on Potocari

17 and that the people from Potocari were stopping him from crossing into

18 Srebrenica where massive amount of people. Refugees were in the hills.

19 And my understanding was not that people from Potocari stopped Arkan and

20 his men and that Naser was there. That's the only thing I know.

21 Q. Then in June -- well, yes, when would that be with the Arkan's

22 paramilitary units?

23 A. That was in beginning of the 1992, in the beginning of the war.

24 And during the time in Srebrenica I did not see Naser at all until

25 Philippe Morillon came with the UN peacekeepers in the beginning of 1993.

Page 9540

1 Q. Did you hear anything of what was going on in Potocari with Naser

2 Oric in June-July 1992 or later?

3 A. First of all, I had a sister who lived in Potocari area. We

4 could not cross to Potocari because a massive shelling continuously from

5 Zaluzje and from Zaluzje, the hill above Bratunac and was shelling the

6 roads and the hills between Srebrenica and Potocari. So it was

7 impossible tore to us cross that area. But later on, we could have

8 crossed -- late 1992 we knew that was when Potocari, we could cross

9 there.

10 Q. Did you at any stage hear or were people saying in the town of

11 Srebrenica that Naser Oric was the overall commander in the whole

12 Srebrenica area?

13 A. People in the Srebrenica, when I say Srebrenica, people from

14 Srebrenica municipality and from all other municipalities that were in

15 Srebrenica refugees as refugees, no one had a commander as an overall

16 commander and there was not, could have been a commander of all people in

17 Srebrenica.

18 Q. Why not?

19 A. Because what happened is if you are for example on the

20 southeastern part of enclave you've got Nedzad Bektic and he's got his

21 men up there. The villages followed him because he was the first one who

22 stood up to the Serbian aggression. And then you got the other party

23 from Bratunac municipality who had their own leaders and who they tried

24 to organise defence to pass into their own villages. They did not look

25 up to no commanders. They considered themselves their own commanders.

Page 9541

1 And then you got other commanders like Hakija Meholjic who had his own

2 group and he considered himself a commander and he commanded his own

3 group. No one could command him. And then you had Tursunovic who had

4 his own group and he commanded himself. No one could command him.

5 And people the way people were spread in enclave is like people

6 from the parts, you know. You have a leader, you stood up to the first

7 aggression, and then everybody admired you and they followed you. And

8 besides, in at the beginning of the war, you know, to late 1992 there was

9 no connection whatsoever to the other parts of the villages around

10 Srebrenica.

11 Q. Thank you. I want to ask you about another personality. Did you

12 know a Becir Bogilovic?

13 A. Yes, I definitely know Becir Bogilovic from the beginning of the

14 war. When we arrived in Srebrenica I was with my friend going around

15 apartments and houses around Srebrenica to look for food or clothing, and

16 I found a former, before-the-war police cap and I put on my head and I

17 walked in the street. Bogilovic was walking up the road like a humongous

18 figure waving his hands with a rifle in his hand and he shot off the cap

19 off my head because I had a police cap on my head and then he was a

20 police officer before the war.

21 Q. Just to be clear about that, he shot the cap off your head. How

22 old were you at this stage?

23 A. I was 13 years old when that happened. He shot it right off the

24 top of my head, the cap, and if I didn't ran probably hit me or do

25 whatever he want to with me.

Page 9542

1 Q. Explain what if any his functions appeared to be at that time.

2 A. When we arrived in Srebrenica there was no police, there was no

3 army, there was nothing there. There was no defence. As you can there

4 is say there was soldiers walking down the street. The only authority

5 that we could see was Bogilovic when he was walking around Srebrenica and

6 higher authority around people, tell people what to do, where to go, how

7 to do things and prevent people from going to the apartments or houses to

8 look for food or clothing or whatever they can get.

9 Q. It maybe stating the obvious, but I suppose he could have killed

10 you when he shot.

11 A. Well, that was my first attempt by be so close to death. I mean

12 I've been close to death before but not like -- immediately aiming at my

13 head like he did and he could have definitely shot me right there.

14 Q. I also want to ask you if you ever saw any sort of communication

15 devices in the time that you were in the -- in the whole Srebrenica

16 enclave.

17 A. When I was in Srebrenica enclave during my time I saw

18 communications, radios in the villages, Serbian villages. And when I

19 found them, I found them missing with no battery or no antenna. They

20 were basically destroyed so they could not be used.

21 Q. Did you ever come across anything described as Motorolas?

22 A. Yes, I found Motorolas and those basically like, today's

23 standards, like a walkie-talkie, like, talk two three kilometres and they

24 would be destroyed or no batteries or like I said other radios, basically

25 useless.

Page 9543

1 Q. Did you yourself ever try to use one of those devices?

2 A. Yes, I have. I found it and I tried to use it I did not know I

3 know the codes or whatever beepers. Basically with a walkie-talkie you

4 press it talk on it basically it's not work. There is no batteries or

5 destroyed not function. And if you were to use it in that area it's so

6 rugged, so hilly, so mountainy [sic], basically it would be useless.

7 Q. When you were in Mocevici were you aware of any fighters or other

8 people using those devices to communicate with Srebrenica?

9 A. Absolutely not. Just basic people, standing guard to protect the

10 refugees and there was no radios, there was no uniforms, there was no

11 weapons. You know, basic weapons like rifles, shotguns that were

12 registered -- hunters had before war that were registered Serb, Serbs did

13 not get to at that time.

14 Q. Now, did you ever go to a place called Jezestica?

15 A. Yes, I have. I've got to Jezestica in the 1992 when late -- in

16 late July sometimes in -- late summer-early fall in Jezestica when we

17 heard there was going to be action very stronghold and myself and

18 hundreds of other refugees went to the village above Jezestica, Jaglici

19 and also another Sarancevici area.

20 Q. Now you've described yourself going with hundreds of other

21 refugees. Was there any term given to you as a collectivity?

22 A. We were called torbari all times we were there, we refugees who

23 were hungry, who would do anything for to regain -- to gain food and

24 supplies.

25 Q. Did the torbari - and I'm just speaking generally now. If it's

Page 9544

1 possible to answer generally - did they go in before fighters during the

2 time that fighters were in actions, after, or what? Can you help us with

3 that.

4 A. With torbari you never know. There were thousands of us in the

5 hills waiting to get supplies. So you can never know. If there was very

6 fierce fighting going on like some of the villages some torbari would say

7 look there is nothing happening there they are not going to be able to

8 take over the village so torbari would go sneak in to burn a haystack or

9 barn that they would send a signal to Serbs that something was burning so

10 they would run. We've done -- I've done that before and other refugees

11 would do anything just to get into village. They would go before, during

12 the time of fighters and after.

13 Q. All right, so going back to Jezestica, how did you actually learn

14 that there was going to be an action there?

15 A. Many people from that I know from Bratunac municipality from

16 Voljevica from Zaluzje from Glogova our discussion that there was a very

17 strong hold between Glogova and Cerska, Konjevic Polje, Pobrdje area very

18 strong hold it must be taken. It's so strategically important because

19 it's right in the centre connecting the Cerska, Konjevic Polje, Pobrdje

20 and Srebrenica together with the Glogova area. And when we heard people

21 talk and also many of the men the fighters lived in the homes, you know,

22 and they would tell us, you know, tell the families, you know, tomorrow

23 is going to be action be food. So one person would tell to another

24 person and it would go all around Srebrenica.

25 Q. And on the day of this action, where exactly were you?

Page 9545

1 A. I was in Jaglici, the hill -- the village above Jezestica. There

2 with the other refugees and there was also a lot of refugees in torbari,

3 in the Cizmici area.

4 Q. And what was the result of that action?

5 A. The first attempt when we were there, that was not successful.

6 Many were being carried wounded and dead but there was no success to take

7 over that village. It was so strong hold.

8 Q. Did you speak to people who participated in the action at any

9 stage?

10 A. I spoke to couple of people from my village and I was there when

11 they talked and they said it was so strong hold, so digged into the hills

12 and to the ground with trenches, heavy weapons, it was impossible to take

13 over and that particular village and that Serbs had rockets, they had

14 tanks, they had cannons, they can shoot right back shelling where the

15 Muslim areas are which we did not have to destroy their bunkers. That

16 was the talk what I heard from my neighbours, my village.

17 Q. Again can you name some of the people who you spoke to?

18 A. Yeah. Enver from Voljevica, Mujo from Voljevica, those people.

19 Q. Did they mention any specific places where some of the things you

20 mentioned were located, tanks and artillery and that sort of thing?

21 A. Yes. All the Jezestica area the hills surrounding all around

22 Jezestica Kravica and around towards Pobrdje and on towards Glogova all

23 the hills around were surrounded with heavy weapons. It was impossible

24 to get close to.

25 Q. If there is a pause, it's because we need to slow down so you can

Page 9546

1 just wait for a question.

2 Did you yourself, when you went to Jezestica, did you see heavy

3 artillery or anything that nature?

4 A. I could not see with my eye which or what artillery was but I

5 could hear where it was coming from, from which hills, from which sides

6 from -- where those shells were coming from. But I could not see with my

7 own eye what weapon was shooting. But I could see where it was coming

8 from.

9 Q. Could you just tell us roughly what directions the shelling was

10 coming from?

11 A. The shelling was coming from the main part of Kravica the

12 shelling was coming from the Jezestica area and the fighting -- shells

13 were coming from the hills separating Cizmici and Kravica that side and

14 Glogova.

15 Q. From your conversations with people who participated in the

16 action, did you get any information as to who was involved in it?

17 A. Yes. From people I spoke to, the situation was that the people

18 from Bratunac municipality who were refugees in the Srebrenica area, they

19 wanted to try to return to their homes, take over back their villages and

20 it was very important to link the isolated area of Ceska to Glogova and

21 then that part of Bratunac municipality. So basically from my talking to

22 people it was people from Bratunac municipality and Glogova especially,

23 led by Glogova people. And then other side there was Cerska and Konjevic

24 Polje and Pobrdje area.

25 Q. Now, when you speak about the people from Glogova, did they have

Page 9547

1 any sort of a leader?

2 A. Yes, they had. They had Ejub Golic who was the main leader who

3 had his own group from Glogova and many other men from Bratunac

4 municipalities joined his group to fight, to take over take back villages

5 from Bratunac municipalities.

6 Q. Now, at the time, did you know many people from Glogova?

7 A. I know a lot of people from Glogova. My two friends were much

8 older than I was, Refik and Senad from Glogova. And they would talk to

9 me and they said our leader Ejub Golic is going to organise a force to

10 take over Jezestica and Kravica area so we can return our people from

11 Bratunac municipality to our own village and to our own municipality.

12 Q. If I can just pick up on what you said there, "so we can return

13 our people from Bratunac municipality to our own village and to our own

14 municipality," was there any sort of municipality loyalty or feelings or

15 rivalry even between Bratunac municipality and Srebrenica municipality?

16 A. Absolutely, because the people that were expelled from their

17 villages, from Bratunac municipality, they all arrived in Srebrenica

18 area. And in Srebrenica area, there was people who were not expelled

19 from their own villages. So people were refuge and they went to return

20 to their own homes. So what they did is they wanted to return you know

21 to Bratunac municipality, their villages and Srebrenica -- people from

22 Srebrenica defended their own homes and it was a dispute going on, as we

23 said. You know, Srebrenica defend your homes. We are going to go fight

24 back our villages our homes to take them back so we don't have to be

25 refugee forever in Srebrenica area.

Page 9548

1 Q. Thank you. Now, earlier in your testimony, you mentioned --

2 actually just to locate Jezestica you said it was late summer, are you

3 able to be more precise as to the --

4 A. I would say it was probably maybe August, sometimes in August

5 when that happened. August-September, that area. Or anywhere between

6 late July and beginning of September.

7 Q. Okay. And can you give us some sense of the numbers of people

8 who were there on that action during that -- on that occasion?

9 A. There was a -- hundreds possibly even thousands torbari,

10 refugees, all covered all around Jaglici and Cizmici area, all around the

11 trees and woods and meadows waiting to descend into Jezestica.

12 Q. And during the summer of 1992, was there any other gathering in

13 Jezestica of those numbers of people?

14 A. I'm not sure if I understand your question. Can you explain

15 that?

16 Q. Was there any other similar action in Jezestica in the summer of

17 1992 or was that the only one?

18 A. There was attempts, you know, in -- I think there was a few

19 attempts in Jezestica area also the total Glogova area there was a lot of

20 attempts to take over Glogova to take it back from Serbs. Many actions

21 that were taken in to take back Glogova were unsuccessful because the

22 Glogova was in the centre between Bratunac and Kravica and the Serbs

23 could have support coming from Bratunac or from Kravica. So it was

24 impossible even if you get into Glogova to hold it for too long because

25 it was a very strong presence of Serbian military in that area.

Page 9549

1 Q. Now, earlier in your testimony, you mentioned Bjelovac. Did you

2 -- did you go to Bjelovac after you had come to Srebrenica?

3 A. Yes, I have. I've gone to Bjelovac during the action I believe

4 was late 1992 sometimes I think in December when there was action in

5 Bjelovac.

6 Q. Why did you go to Bjelovac?

7 A. Myself, together with thousands other people from Bratunac

8 municipality or from whole area of Srebrenica, we knew that action was

9 going to take place in Bjelovac and we knew that Bjelovac is a flat land

10 close to the Drina River, same as our own villages of Voljevica, Zaluzje

11 and that area and we knew that they have a vast amount of food. So for

12 us to survive we had to go through the hills to Bjelovac to take whatever

13 we can get for our own survival.

14 Q. You said you knew there would be a vast amount of food. Why did

15 you know that?

16 A. Because a lot of food for example from Voljevica Zaluzje were --

17 all our own goods were looted from by people from Bjelovac and from

18 Pobrdje and was taken toward Bjelovac area and also because nice fertile

19 land close to Drina River.

20 Q. When is harvest time in your part of the world?

21 A. We have all different harvest time, you got corn you can do the

22 -- have the corn in the springs and you got the -- I mean you got the

23 flour that you harvest in the fall you get in spring. So you got all

24 different times to do different harvesting in the area. Potato is

25 different and beans and flour is different and corn and so on. So

Page 9550

1 different harvesting. But not only food gets harvested, a lot of food in

2 storage from our own villages were based in Bjelovac. Because we watched

3 and it was taken from our villages.

4 Q. What were some of the places where people would store food?

5 A. Like outside -- outside storages. Many have outside like dig

6 into the ground to keep food like in the hill, in the ground, outside

7 storage and outside storages, they would have storages in the -- stuff in

8 barns. They would have food in the house. They are everywhere all

9 different kind of things.

10 Q. And before coming to the action in December, you told us how you

11 went back to Voljevica before and how people were injured on those

12 occasions. What are some of the way that is ha happened?

13 A. Well, in beginning of the war when we were attempting to go

14 toward Voljevica, many people from my village that I know attempted to go

15 through Biljaca and many of them were ambushed, many of them landmines,

16 many of them were captured and never saw again. Even until this day they

17 never know what happened to those people. And they were females, young

18 men, old men, children, anybody. And then also when we attempted

19 crossing from Srebrenica to Voljevica, the landmines were everywhere.

20 And then of course shellings were continuous.

21 Q. And when you actually got into the town of Voljevica, were there

22 ever any encounters when people went into larders or storage facilities?

23 A. Yes, because most of it were looted from Voljevica but you would

24 go whether people from Voljevica left Voljevica. They were hided outside

25 somewhere with nobody can find it food. So I could not go to my house it

Page 9551

1 was already burnt. I went to my neighbour's house. I know where he

2 stored his food and I found it.

3 Q. Now, going to Bjelovac now, can you describe for us the route you

4 took to get down into Bjelovac and describe for us just briefly about

5 what happened from your perspective during that action, what you saw.

6 And not -- just so it's not too lengthy, you can start by just saying day

7 by day what occurred and then we will take it more precisely.

8 A. First day, we left hundreds and thousands of people from

9 Srebrenica went toward Dimnici area. They were in that area and then

10 from there I crossed to Pozlodnik area. That was on the first day. When

11 the fierce fighting was -- first got to Dimnici the first amount of

12 fighting was going down towards Bjelovac and Sase area and then I crossed

13 over to Pozlodnik and I stayed there in the hills on the first day. On

14 the first day this action was not successful. It was a fierce shelling,

15 shooting fierce combat going down below and then you can hear shooting

16 coming from Serbia and a lot of wounded and dead were being carried right

17 past where we were in hills.

18 Q. That's the second day, I think. What happened after that?

19 A. All during the first day was fighting going on and all through

20 night and next day was also continuous fighting and sometimes in the --

21 in the morning hours, planes were bombing the area continuously, shelling

22 was coming from Serbia, shelling was coming from Bratunac area, that

23 direction. And fierce amount of fighting was going on especially on the

24 hill above Bjelovac.

25 MR. DI FAZIO: Your Honours, please in the previous answer the

Page 9552

1 witness gave I heard the witness say there was fist fighting going on as

2 well which I thought might be a reference to hand-to-hand combat. So I

3 think that needs to be clarified and it would be important that we get

4 the --

5 JUDGE AGIUS: Fair enough, Mr. Di Fazio. In fact, that's what I

6 thought I had heard too. But then of course, I was following also the

7 transcript and I saw it was fierce in the transcript. So perhaps you can

8 address that, Mr. Jones.

9 MR. JONES: Yes.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: The witness has heard the exchange between Mr. Di

11 Fazio and myself.

12 MR. JONES: Apart from the correction he has referred to fierce

13 fighting and it might be useful just to ask.

14 Q. Was there close fighting, hand-to-hand combat in Bjelovac?

15 A. On the first day of fighting of combat there was not hand-to-hand

16 combat. On the second day there was hand-to-hand combat in the village

17 of Bjelovac, but on the first day when I was in the hills, there was

18 fierce fighting going on down below. On the second day when we descended

19 into Bjelovac that's where we saw hand-to-hand combat.



22 Q. You saw that yourself?

23 JUDGE AGIUS: Is it clear enough now, Mr. Di Fazio? Thank you it

24 has cleared up. Okay, let's go ahead.


Page 9553

1 Q. You mentioned that a hill by Bjelovac. Which hill is that?

2 A. That would be Kunjerac.

3 Q. Did you go to Kunjerac on that occasion?

4 A. Yes, I have. I descended from the hills on to the Kunjerac and

5 to Bjelovac. And my first arrival into Kunjerac was very dangerous was

6 landmines were everywhere, there was bunkers, trenches, everywhere. When

7 we got into the hill of Kunjerac there was a huge amount presence of

8 rocket launchers, graffitis, Red Berets, all different weapons, and huge

9 boxes, ammunition boxes filled with sand and digged very deeply into the

10 ground.

11 Q. Can I ask: Why did you go up on Kunjerac?

12 A. Well, when we descended from the Berisa hill, this is above

13 Kunjerac down toward Kunjerac, it was the fastest way for me to get into

14 Bjelovac.

15 Q. Can you at this stage what were the numbers of people around?

16 Were there a few, were there many?

17 A. When I got to Kunjerac together with other peoples, thousands of

18 people in all directions, I can't be specific but I would say it was in

19 the huge amount of thousands of people, everywhere. In every single

20 direction you could look at you would see people.

21 Q. These fighters or civilians or what were they?

22 A. This is starving civilians from Srebrenica, same as I was.

23 Q. You mentioned airplanes. Did you see -- did you see with your

24 own eyes the airplanes and did you see what if anything they were doing?

25 A. I saw the airplanes coming toward the Bratunac area into Serbia

Page 9554

1 and then bombing all around Bjelovac area especially up toward Sikiric

2 area that direction. The bombing was non-stop and that's where I think

3 it was most fierce combat also was going on non-stop.

4 Q. Could you see where the bombs were falling from the planes?

5 A. Bombs were falling everywhere. A lot of bombs fell in the hills,

6 lot a lot of bombs fell down low in the low grounds.

7 Q. When you say low grounds, are there any hamlets or villages which

8 you remember?

9 A. If you go to Bjelovac from the centre of the village toward up

10 toward toward the Loznicka Rijeka, that area. A lot of bombs were

11 falling.

12 Q. Are you familiar with the hamlets and villages beyond Loznicka

13 Rijeka?

14 A. I know the names of the villages of that area but I have not gone

15 there much. Jovanovici, Sikiric, Loznicka Rijeka, that area.

16 Q. All right. And so did you see any bombs falling in those areas,

17 Jovanovici, Sikirici or not?

18 A. That's where most of the bombs went, in that direction.

19 Q. One question and this is not relating to the day but just

20 generally when you are in Bjelovac can you actually see Sikiric, can you

21 see people in Sikiric?

22 A. You could not see from Bjelovac Sikiric, absolutely not.

23 Q. Why is that?

24 A. Because you had the curved road and you've got hills between.

25 You cannot see Sikiric.

Page 9555

1 Q. Thank you. Now, did you eventually go into Bjelovac yourself? I

2 think you told us you did.

3 A. Yes, I have. I descended down to the centre of the village.

4 Q. Can you firstly describe for us what if anything you saw there in

5 terms of military hardware.

6 A. Yes. I've seen down by on the bank of the Drina there was two

7 APCs right on the bank and there was a shooting, furious shooting coming

8 from Serbia blocking protecting those two APCs. And I saw weapons

9 everywhere. And I saw a tractor full of weapons taken from Bjelovac

10 toward Srebrenica.

11 Q. You know who drove that tractor?

12 A. Yes, I do. The guy's name -- he's from my village. His name is

13 Mujic. He drove that truck full of grenades, anti-aircraft gun and

14 bullets. All different kind of weapons.

15 Q. Now, for the next set of questions I'd actually like to go into

16 private session briefly.

17 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Let's go into private session for a while,

18 please. Thank you.

19 [Private session]

20 (redacted)

21 (redacted)

22 (redacted)

23 (redacted)

24 (redacted)

25 (redacted)

Page 9556











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Page 9560

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10 (redacted)

11 (redacted)

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24 (redacted)

25 [Open session]

Page 9561

1 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.


3 Q. Now you mentioned --

4 JUDGE AGIUS: We shall in open session, Mr. Jones.

5 MR. JONES: Sorry, thank you, Your Honour.

6 Q. Sorry, give me a moment. You said a lot of stuff was going on

7 that was lit on fire from the combat. Can you explain that just a little

8 more what you bean by houses being set on fire from the combat.

9 A. In Bjelovac, this on second day there was a hand-to-hand combat

10 so if Muslim forces go into the one house, few metres away there is a

11 Serbian soldiers in that house so the Serbian soldiers would be using

12 Zoljas or RPGs or anything that is available to them to knock out the

13 Muslim fighters from the house next -- next to where they are. So when

14 they hit the house they will hit the wall and automatically start house

15 on fire and also many shells were landing on top of the house and the

16 roof automatically pick up fire, those houses.

17 Q. Why could you say they would automatically start on fire when a

18 shell landed?

19 A. For those who haven't seen or haven't been so close to when a

20 shell falls or when a Zolja hits it destroys everything right away, and

21 it's so much flame, so much fire, so much fragments flying around so

22 there is no way not to start it on fire. It's a huge flame. And

23 especially when a tank shell lands on top of the house, it destroys

24 everything right away.

25 Q. Now, when you reached the centre of Bjelovac, did you see

Page 9562

1 fighters, if you understand or if you attach any meaning to that? Were

2 there any fighters, recognisable fighters, there?

3 A. As the torbari were arriving in Bjelovac, you could see fighters

4 pulling back out of Bjelovac and we were left to take whatever we wanted

5 to take for what was in need for us for Bjelovac.

6 Q. When they were pulling back, at that stage, were houses on fire?

7 A. There was not houses on fire, own couple of places we saw where

8 there was combat, fierce combat you could see on fire there. Not regular

9 house on fire.

10 Q. Why were the -- why were the fighters pulling back, if you know?

11 A. It's obvious reason. Whenever there is action they take they go

12 into action they take -- if the village is taken over, then there is no

13 reason to stay there. Besides, there is the so far from the area, you

14 can not even hold the area so the refugees go in there. So the basic

15 reason is take those villages is for people to get supplies. So when

16 they successfully took over the village then the refugees descend on it

17 take what they like and move out also. There is no reason for them to

18 stay there.

19 Q. So do I understand from that that you didn't see any intention to

20 remain and occupy Bjelovac?

21 A. Absolutely not because we did not want -- there is no reason to

22 take their villages, only the reason that we go into action is take

23 what's ours return to our own homes, not to tabling nobody else's home.

24 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's stop here for a moment because I think this

25 needs to be cleared up a little bit.

Page 9563

1 Did the torbari descend into or onto Bjelovac once the fighting

2 had stopped and the soldiers were already retreating or did the torbari

3 descend while fighting was still ongoing?

4 THE WITNESS: Your Honour, both times. During the fighting and

5 after the fighters pulled back, you will see torbari because for example

6 I'll see my neighbour. He was getting sack of corn on his back the

7 action was still going on down there. And we asked him how did you do

8 that he goes I went myself down there and got it. So with torbari

9 during, before and after. When there was -- torbari were killed that

10 way.

11 JUDGE AGIUS: And what we need to have some further information

12 about is you were asked by Mr. Jones whether there were houses burning at

13 the time when the soldiers were retreating. Could you give us a

14 description exactly, an exact description, or as nearly an exact

15 description as possible as to what was the picture at the time when the

16 soldiers were withdrawing as regards burning or destruction of houses at

17 the time.

18 THE WITNESS: There was a few house that is were burning where

19 you can see where the shelling, that fierce fighting was going on and you

20 could see where the shells were knocked right through the wall on top of

21 the house and that house on fire, two or three guys saw.

22 JUDGE AGIUS: In other words, if you were to count all these

23 houses, how many houses would you say you saw destroyed or burning at the

24 time you descended into Bjelovac?

25 THE WITNESS: The time we arrived I saw probably about 3 houses,

Page 9564

1 2, 3 houses where the combat was going on where there was huge holes in

2 the houses. That's only ones I saw, about three or four.

3 JUDGE AGIUS: And this would be --

4 THE WITNESS: Two or three.

5 JUDGE AGIUS: -- in which part of Bjelovac? In the direction of

6 Loznicka Rijeka, or...

7 THE WITNESS: In the direction of Loznicka Rijeka, that's

8 correct.

9 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Judge Eser, please.

10 JUDGE ESER: I have a further question just to clarify the

11 situation. You spoke of a fierce combat. Now, combat between whom? And

12 when there was a combat between fighters, where have the torbari been?

13 Have they been in between or around? And could you describe this a

14 little bit?

15 THE WITNESS: Best way to describe imagine two houses in the

16 village, in one house there is a Serbian soldiers, and in the other's

17 house there is Muslim fighters and you can see hand-to-hand -- the RPG,

18 the Zoljas shooting at the area where the Muslim fighters were, trying to

19 knock them out of Bjelovac out of the houses. So when they were shooting

20 the RPGs and Zoljas and the shells at the house where the Muslim fighters

21 were you could see right -- because every house was up.

22 JUDGE ESER: In such a situation, where have been the torbaris?

23 THE WITNESS: Torbaris everywhere. You can never see where

24 tobaris are. Like animals, flying in every single direction. They can

25 be in between Serbs and Muslims. They can be already stealing food.

Page 9565

1 They can be already burning haystacks or whatever they can get to. There

2 was no -- there was no way to know where torbari were. They were

3 everywhere. Just like releasing a flock of birds in every single

4 direction.

5 JUDGE ESER: But wasn't it very dangerous to be in between both

6 sides? So could it happen that torbaris to even have been killed by

7 their own fighters?

8 THE WITNESS: Our lives when we were expelled from our village

9 and on rest of the time were very dangerous. Every single move you're

10 close to death and when you were in Bjelovac it was nothing new. Death

11 is present at all times regardless where you're at whether you're in

12 Bjelovac or Srebrenica or anywhere. So it's possible -- not possible,

13 it's true that many torbari were killed that way. It was for them to die

14 from starvation or to hunt for food.

15 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Jones. Thank you, Judge Eser.

16 MR. JONES: I'm -- I'm leaving Bjelovac now.

17 Q. But I did want to come back to Hazim Mercury whom you mentioned.

18 Do you know his full name?

19 A. Hazim, I believe it's Omerovic.

20 Q. How do you know him?

21 A. He -- him and his mother were very good with my family so he came

22 to see my father very often before war.

23 Q. Where did he live before the war?

24 A. His family came from Jeskovica which is municipality of

25 Srebrenica and moved to Voljevica.

Page 9566

1 Q. Before the war did you see him in Voljevica?

2 A. Yes, I have. I've seen around the village. I've been to his

3 house in Voljevica. He came to my house in Voljevica.

4 Q. Can you describe a little what he was like, his personality.

5 A. Hazim was a nice guy. He was a very friendly to everybody. He

6 moved around our village. He was maybe a little bit taller than me, very

7 nice build.

8 Q. I think you told us which unit he was in during the war.

9 A. Yes. He was first in Hakija Meholjic and later on he was with

10 Akif Ustic.

11 Q. Did he bear a resemblance to anyone?

12 A. Absolutely. If you were in Srebrenica and many times when he

13 came to the house and if you look at him ten metres away or 20 metres

14 away you will say it's exactly Naser Oric, a hundred per cent copy.

15 Q. Do you recall any incidents in that regard?

16 A. Yes, I do. I was on Konjevic Polje once and also in Suceska area

17 and he would go around and he will -- because if you never saw Naser or

18 if you never saw Hazim and if he say I'm Naser Oric everybody looks and

19 says, Oh, maybe it is. If you look so he did many things. He will say,

20 Give me this or that, I'm Naser, and people would give it to him. And he

21 liked the attention to be Naser.

22 Q. Thank you. Sorry if I took that slightly out of sequence. There

23 is a reason. I do actually have a couple more questions about Bjelovac.

24 From your conversations with people from any other source of information,

25 did you learn who participated in the action in Bjelovac?

Page 9567

1 A. Yes, I have. It was people from that area, people from

2 Voljevica, people from Zaluzje, Bjelovac, Biljaca, that area who wanted

3 to go back to toward our own villages. Those were Bratunac people from

4 Bratunac municipality and were -- there was a Mido [phoen] there was from

5 Biljaca and people who were expelled from that area who wanted to return

6 their homes and --

7 Q. Now, in fact we might not have even entirely finished with

8 Bjelovac. How long -- how long did you in fact stay in Bjelovac?

9 A. You cannot stay in Bjelovac for too long because Bjelovac was

10 right on the border on the bank of the Drina River and from Serbia, from

11 there, tanks shelling, there was anti-aircraft continuously shooting.

12 There was -- you could not go down, you had to stay very close to the

13 road. And there was a lot of shelling coming from the Sikiric area and

14 then from Bratunac area there was continuously attacks in Bjelovac. So

15 as soon as you go there grab whatever you can get and try to run out of

16 it.

17 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Jones, while we are still on Bjelovac,

18 particularly the witness could explain to us the various actions as they

19 occurred or they happened according to him, depending on whether it was

20 morning or afternoon on the relevant day or days. I'm leaving the choice

21 of questions of course entirely to you, but you know exactly why I am

22 asking these questions.

23 MR. JONES: Yes.

24 JUDGE AGIUS: Or asking to you ask these questions.

25 MR. JONES: Yes.

Page 9568

1 Q. I don't know if you heard His Honour's request for clarification.

2 Perhaps a way to take it is when you were actually in Bjelovac itself,

3 what time of day was it when you first got into the town?

4 A. I went to Bjelovac on the second day around mid-day or so into

5 Bjelovac. And there were people before me who were down in that area.

6 Q. You referred to airplanes. Whether did you see those?

7 A. On the second days in the morning times I could see the airplanes

8 flying when I was there.

9 Q. What sort of airplanes did you see? I meant to ask you that

10 earlier.

11 A. Well, the time there was two what we called two propeller planes

12 or two-wing planes and there was also another one we call coach planes,

13 agricultural planes flying above the head bombing the area around

14 Bjelovac.

15 JUDGE AGIUS: Wait a moment. I see coach planes. It's

16 agricultural planes, as I take it. These are airplanes that arrive for

17 spring?

18 THE WITNESS: Those were used before the war as agricultural

19 planes and there is another one with two wings.

20 JUDGE AGIUS: Biplanes.

21 THE WITNESS: Biplanes. There you go, thank you, Your Honour.


23 Q. Did you ever see other planes or aircraft in that area?

24 A. Yes. Later on when we tried to my sister and I tried to go back

25 to Voljevica to gain food, there was fighter planes flying from Serbia

Page 9569

1 area, from Bratunac area -- in Serbia from Bratunac, that direction, and

2 other side of Drina going towards Bjelovac and bombing continuously that

3 area. That was not a small planes that were bombing on the second day.

4 That was fighter actual fighter planes.

5 Q. So when did you see the fighter planes, what time of day?

6 A. Mid-day probably noon or so, sometime that time, mid-day.

7 Q. And is that on the same day, the second day as you're describing

8 it?

9 A. The second day when I saw those biplanes and those planes bombing

10 I saw them but a few days after I tried to attempt to go to Voljevica I

11 saw the mixed bombed area.

12 Q. So then still on the second day, how long did you stay in

13 Bjelovac on the second day? And where did you go?

14 A. I stayed around Bjelovac for the rest of the day and from there

15 we moved out and then myself I moved out towards Srebrenica and towards

16 Srebrenica. But many people stayed in that area. You could not go --

17 you could not stay very close to Drina bank because there was non-stop

18 fighting coming from Serbia shooting into Bosnian part, to Bjelovac.

19 Q. And did you see shells or any other missiles actually landing in

20 Bjelovac from -- being shot from the other side of the Drina?

21 A. Absolutely, because when the fighters pulled out, the -- the

22 Serbian artillery was positioned outside Serbia and was continually

23 bombing the Bjelovac area it could be -- the bombing could be a Serbian

24 house or Muslim house or Roma house, did not look what was there when

25 they were bombing, when they were shelling that area. They not only

Page 9570

1 shelled Bjelovac area they shelled up towards Sikiric and they shelled up

2 towards Biljaca and Sase area, that direction.

3 Q. You told us how you put out towards Sase. Did you actually

4 manage to get any food or provisions yourself?

5 A. I was young, you know, and I could not carry very much so my main

6 thing is find what is more useful in Srebrenica, like tobacco, cigarettes

7 tobacco, sugar and coffee I find that and take it and exchange it for

8 food flour or corn. I found it in Bjelovac and I take it back to

9 Srebrenica.

10 Q. And then was the second day, was that the end of the action in

11 Bjelovac or were you aware of anything else happening after that?

12 A. Well, that was the so-called end of the -- end of the action but

13 it was never a liberated -- liberated, say okay we can move freely I was

14 continuously after that fighting in the Bjelovac you know till Serbs took

15 over.

16 Q. I want to move on to another action because you mentioned you saw

17 several. Did you -- did you ever go back to the Jezestica area first of

18 all?

19 A. Yes, I've gone back there in January 1993, that area.

20 Q. Was that an action or was it something else?

21 A. That was the action when the action was in Jezestica and Kravica

22 and that area.

23 Q. Did you know beforehand that there would be an action or did you

24 just find out?

25 A. Everybody in Srebrenica knew there was going to be action as soon

Page 9571

1 as the other villagers -- men will be, you know, stay in their home and

2 they will be telling their families what was going on. And I heard from

3 my friends that action will be taking place in Kravica and then together

4 with thousands of other refugees from Srebrenica I went towards Jaglici

5 area and many other refugees went towards Pale, Zimice, that area also.

6 Q. It's okay. Just give a moment for the interpretation. First I'm

7 going to ask you what you were wearing that day.

8 A. I have the jeans and a sweater, jacket with the white sheet rope

9 over me and that was the routine that we wore, torbari especially, in the

10 winter we would take any bed sheeting or any kind of white sheet like a

11 robe and then we wrapped -- put it over all our clothes.

12 Q. And why did you do that?

13 A. Well, simple reason: Because theres' snow and if you moving

14 around if you don't have something white on you you're like black figures

15 around snow and they can spot you from every single direction. This way

16 if I have a robe on me, they can't see me.

17 Q. If you could just describe for us first of all just overall what

18 you did that day, where you went and what you saw.

19 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment. He's mentioning snow. Which action is

20 he referring to in particular now? Because I suppose it couldn't have

21 been Bjelovac.

22 MR. JONES: No, we had moved on to Jezestica. He said he went

23 back there in January 1993.

24 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Okay. All right. Was he there in

25 August as well or not.

Page 9572

1 MR. JONES: Yes, that's our submission. He said late summer late

2 July early August.

3 JUDGE AGIUS: That's exactly what I understood. Would there be

4 snow on the hills in the mountains there?

5 MR. JONES: No, no this is the second occasion we are talking

6 about, January 1993. We can clarify that with the witness.

7 JUDGE AGIUS: I think you need to because otherwise, this snow

8 business and wearing white clothing.

9 MR. JONES: Yes.

10 Q. Did you -- the action you talked about when you went up to

11 Jaglici in the summer, what were you wearing on that occasion?

12 A. We talk about in late July and August sometime?

13 Q. Yes.

14 A. Normal clothes what I can get on you, you can be jeans or sweater

15 or T-shirt, you know. But in the one I'm talking about now when it comes

16 to snow it's January 1993 in the Kravica attack in the Jezestica area.

17 Q. Could you give a brief overview of where you went and what you

18 saw on that occasion, January 1993?

19 A. When we arrived from Srebrenica, to Jaglici and all surrounding

20 areas it was a fierce cold winter. When we got there was an action going

21 on down below in Jezestica and Kravica area. Thousands of torbari were

22 everywhere around the hills in the trees with the fires and preparing to

23 descend down into Kravica. Myself, I descended from Jaglici down into

24 Kajici area and I stayed there and I got into Kravica. In Kravica I

25 could see -- first of all we got to one house, there was a -- and then

Page 9573

1 there it was a spray of machine-gun coming from the window and then we

2 hid and then was probably 50 kilometres -- 50 metres from the house, and

3 we hid behind a haystack and then the next thing you heard was a huge

4 explosion, like a grenade, and then we got to the house there there was a

5 two dead bodies, two older people, old people, with a machine-gun right

6 next to them. They were dead there.

7 And then from there I moved down to the centre of the village. I

8 saw APC moving very slowly, shooting continuously all around the hills

9 and I saw "four-barrel anti-aircraft on a hill in Srebrenica -- in the

10 centre of Kravica upon a hill.

11 Q. If I just stop you there, just to go back a little bit when you

12 said that thousands of torbari were everywhere around the hills in the

13 trees with the fires and preparing to descend down into Kravica." Can

14 you explain or clarify what exactly you were referring to there?

15 A. Well, what I mean is we were starved and what we wanted to do is

16 gain food from Kravica and many attempts were made to go down and when

17 the fierce fighting was going on we couldn't descend. And then later on

18 when we saw the combat getting worse and worse then everybody else,

19 everybody, even torbari went straight down to Kravica.

20 Q. Thank you, but when you it were referring to fires in the hills

21 and the trees?

22 A. I see.

23 Q. What was that you were referring to there?

24 A. That's to heat ourselves, you know. We were waiting and we

25 wanted to make a little fire to heat your hands, stay around fire. All

Page 9574

1 of us who were freezing in the snow.

2 Q. Did you see many similar fires in that area before the action?

3 A. A lot of fires in the Jaglici area, people who are trying to heat

4 themselves up, a lot of fires in that area. People squatting right next

5 to a fire.

6 Q. You also mentioned how you had this white sheet on you. Can you

7 estimate how many other torbari were wearing something similar?

8 A. Majority of torbari were wearing something like that because we

9 had the idea you don't go into any kind of -- whether it was action or

10 anything or non -- especially in the winter, unless you take something to

11 cover yourself which is white. Everybody had that. Majority of people

12 had that.

13 Q. Again, when we are talking about the torbari, do you know where

14 they were from, the torbari, what places?

15 A. Majority of people that were there were all Bratunac municipality

16 people who were refuge. For those you know for Srebrenica people who had

17 their homes not burned completely, they stayed back and they can harvest

18 something in their own backyard, their own land, but when we were

19 expelled from Bratunac municipality we had nothing. So the majority of

20 those people, those starving people that were already expelled from their

21 villages from Bratunac municipality.

22 Q. Now, you referred to artillery firing. Can you describe roughly

23 the locations and if you saw anything, you know, what types of artillery

24 were firing that day.

25 A. Well, there is the from the hills I believe it's called Zeleni

Page 9575

1 it's toward Drina there was a strong shelling coming from that area into

2 Kravica when still action was going on down there. Huge shelling was

3 coming from there from all other hills around toward Drina from if you go

4 from Konjevic Polje left side in the hills toward Drina and then from

5 Glogova area also on the Drina side was coming into Kravica, all

6 different shelling. And then also in Kravica there was four-barrel, like

7 I say, on a hill. There was continuously mobbing the area in all around

8 in the Kravica. So he could be actually shooting at his own people or he

9 could be shooting at the Muslims in the Kravica area. Same thing with

10 shells that were coming into Kravica area. They could be shelling their

11 own people, their own houses and at Muslims that were in Kravica.

12 Q. You mention this four-barrel. What exactly is that? That's

13 something which perhaps you can help us with, having not seen one.

14 A. Well we called that praga, I don't know how would say in English.

15 It would be like four-barrel anti-aircraft cannons, I guess that's how it

16 would translate. But I'm not sure that's the military term for it. If a

17 sense you shoot sort of like shells all around the area, not as big

18 shells as a regular cannon or tank but it's like sprays at one time four

19 barrels shooting non-stop, from all four barrels at once.

20 Q. Was this the first time you'd seen such a weapon or had you seen

21 it before?

22 A. I've seen that before. I've seen that in Bjelovac I've seen that

23 in other villages.

24 Q. Now, you may not be able to say for each hill where artillery was

25 firing from but can you give us an idea at least roughly how many

Page 9576

1 different locations you were aware that there was artillery firing from?

2 A. Artillery fire was coming from at least five six different

3 directions different hills right into Kravica and that was the same time

4 as the combat was going on and I was -- and together with the other

5 torbari right in the village and it was continuously coming shells and

6 even Serbs were in those houses still. Their soldiers and our fighters

7 and civilians were in the village at the same time.

8 Q. Now, do you know a location called Siljkovici?

9 A. I know where Siljkovici -- I know Siljkovici but I was not in

10 Siljkovici.

11 Q. On that day were you aware of anything happening there or

12 anything located there?

13 A. Fierce combat was and fierce fighting was going on in Siljkovici

14 area. I heard that but I was not present there.

15 Q. How do you know, then, that there was combat there?

16 A. Because you can hear people saying there is a humongous fighting

17 going on Siljkovici and you can hear also the huge shells coming from

18 that direction, explosions that area that was coming also toward Kravica.

19 Q. Now, do you know or did you find out about what was captured in

20 Kravica in terms of weaponry?

21 A. I saw a lot of ox carts carrying a lot of heavy weapons,

22 anti-aircraft guns, a lot of shells, lot of rocket launchers,

23 multi-rocket launchers were all being carried by ox carts toward Jaglici

24 area. And extremely a lot of light weapons like automatic rifle, AK-47,

25 machine-gun, that kind of guns, a lot of it. And then also when I was

Page 9577

1 coming out of Kravica you can see a hill that is between Zimice and

2 Kravica and it's got a lot of those small rocket -- rockets, RPGs, all

3 around the hills everywhere.

4 Q. Now, what were you actually doing on that day?

5 (redacted)

6 (redacted)

7 (redacted)

8 (redacted)

9 (redacted)

10 (redacted)

11 (redacted)

12 (redacted)

13 (redacted)

14 (redacted)

15 (redacted)

16 (redacted)

17 (redacted)

18 (redacted)

19 (redacted)

20 (redacted)

21 (redacted)

22 (redacted)

23 (redacted)

24 (redacted)

25 (redacted)

Page 9578

1 (redacted)

2 (redacted)

3 Q. I trust he didn't do that.

4 A. He did not shoot her, no. He slapped her and he screamed at her

5 and told some stuff and there was nothing else he can do.

6 And then you can also see when the shells were coming, when the

7 -- were coming into Kravica like I said in Bjelovac there would land on

8 top of the house and house was right away flames.

9 MR. JONES: I'm mindful of the time.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: There is not going to be a next break, actually,

11 because we understand that the witness requires 30 minutes in any case by

12 way of a break and if we stop at quarter past 1 and have a 30 minute

13 break that would take us to quarter to 2 when we are supposed to finish.

14 So you have these options. You are either finish at five minutes

15 time or we recuperate the seven, eight minutes that we lost after the

16 last break and of course you lose the credit at the same time, and maybe

17 you close one of the chapters or -- that you will dealing with now and we

18 continue tomorrow. It's up to you, Mr. Jones. We are not going to make

19 it difficult for you.

20 MR. JONES: I think I can finish today. That would be

21 preferable. Yes.

22 JUDGE AGIUS: What do you mean you finish today?

23 MR. JONES: Perhaps I misunderstood Your Honour. I can keep

24 going for half an hour or so.

25 JUDGE AGIUS: Keep going or half an hour I think we need the okay

Page 9579

1 from the interpreters and the technical staff.

2 [Trial chamber and registrar confer]

3 THE INTERPRETER: Fine with the interpreters, Your Honour.

4 JUDGE AGIUS: Pardon?

5 THE INTERPRETER: Fine with the interpreters.

6 JUDGE AGIUS: Fine with the interpreters. I don't know whether

7 it's fine with the technicians, and of course I need or we need to make

8 sure that the witness himself agrees to this, Mr. Jones.

9 MR. JONES: Yes.

10 JUDGE AGIUS: Because I understand that he needs to walk the dog.

11 THE WITNESS: That's fine, Your Honour.

12 JUDGE AGIUS: And the last thing I would do is to create

13 difficulties for this witness who has been very cooperative.

14 MR. JONES: Absolutely, Your Honour. I'm just looking again at

15 my notes. I think I can finish in 15 minutes if that's -- if that's okay

16 with the witness, if it's okay with everyone.

17 JUDGE AGIUS: I understand that it won't cause you any problems.

18 MR. WUBBEN: No, Your Honour. Suppose if it is so short and we

19 stop now we will still be confident to finish tomorrow.

20 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Yes, okay. Would it be all right with

21 you, Mr. Bekric, if we continued for another 15 minutes?

22 THE WITNESS: That's fine, Your Honour.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Thank you. 15 or 20 minutes.

24 THE WITNESS: That's fine.

25 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Mr. Jones and I wish to -- I haven't

Page 9580

1 heard from the technicians as yet. It's okay. All right. So I wish to

2 acknowledge again our gratitude to both the technicians and the

3 interpreters. Yes, Mr. Jones.

4 MR. JONES: Yes, thank you.

5 Q. A few more questions, Mr. Bekric, on Kravica then we are almost

6 done. On that day did you see damage to property that was actually

7 caused by shells or other missiles?

8 A. Yes, I have. I've seen quite a few houses that were destroyed by

9 shelling or other military equipment the Serbs used or -- that were

10 shelled at the at the houses, houses, barns, other -- things in the

11 Kravica area.

12 JUDGE AGIUS: In the meantime, Mr. Jones, I'm just taking the

13 initiative, I'm sure that Judge Brydensholt and Judge Eser would agree

14 with me, to order -- Mr. Jones, to redact the transcript in the relative

15 parts when he just went out of control.

16 MR. JONES: Yes, I appreciate that.

17 JUDGE AGIUS: We will do it under our own responsibility and

18 proceed go ahead.

19 MR. JONES: Thank you.

20 Q. Did you go into many houses on that day?

21 A. Yes, I have.

22 Q. And what if anything did you find in those houses?

23 A. In those houses, the first house I mentioned I saw the two old

24 bodies. I saw machine-gun, I saw all different things in the house, and

25 the houses I went into you can see the old houses were full of stuff you

Page 9581

1 wanted. You could see a lot of small weapons and a lot of grenades, a

2 lot of military equipment around those houses. And I took whatever I

3 wanted from those houses and left.

4 Q. Did you yourself find any military equipment or anything like

5 that? Sorry, let me rephrase that. Did you actually take anything of a

6 military nature yourself?

7 A. No, I did not. I did not take anything.

8 Q. Did you see Serbs fighting back in Kravica?

9 A. I could see where the combat was taking place but I could not see

10 them with my own eye to say specifically who I saw. But I could see

11 combat was going on in Kravica.

12 Q. Could you name some of the places the Serbs were fighting from?

13 A. Yes. The main combat where I was at was the main part of

14 Kravica. You could see the fierce combat, huge explosions going on in

15 the villages around. But in the where -- I saw the main part of Kravica

16 house-to-house combat and you can see huge explosions, you know, when

17 they hit the house the house goes right away up into had air. It was

18 coming towards Muslim side.

19 Q. Did you see Serbs fighting from trenches or from their houses or

20 in the streets or what?

21 A. Well, Serbs used a lot of tricks. They were smart. They would

22 shoot many of us as civilians. They would -- the front lines were they

23 would pull from there and go into their houses and they keep silent. And

24 then you think nobody is there so you run very fast into the house. They

25 start shooting with the machine-guns, with the grenades, with the RPGs

Page 9582

1 with the Zoljas actually right there. So they used a lot of -- they used

2 the houses as their way to fight back. They would surprise you. They

3 would go up on top roof, the balcony, keep silent. If you're coming

4 they'll just spray you with a machine gun or whatever weapons they had.

5 Q. Is that something which you yourself experienced or you saw or

6 you heard about?

7 A. I've seen that myself. Like I said, the first one I saw the

8 machine-gun shooting from the window and then same thing down in main

9 part of Kravica you could see especially in the new houses, the bigger

10 houses. They would use balconies, and shoot from balconies with whatever

11 weapons they had at the people, whether civilian or a fighter. Whoever

12 was coming toward them.

13 Q. How long did you stay in Kravica that day?

14 A. I stayed all through the day in Kravica. And took whatever I

15 wanted and I left.

16 Q. What did you in fact take?

17 A. I took 25 kilos of flour. I could not carry it so I took a lid

18 at the wooden stove and I put it on and I pulled behind me on snow. And

19 I took -- I also found camouflage pants inside the house and I took them

20 and put over my pants. And I also found a pair of boots and I put them

21 on and I sold my camouflage pants I found for a bottle of plum brandy so

22 I can exchange it for food in Srebrenica.

23 Q. At the end of the day, how many houses if you're able to say or

24 what proportion of houses in Kravica did you see damaged?

25 (redacted)

Page 9583

1 (redacted)

2 (redacted)

3 JUDGE AGIUS: [Microphone not activated]. This sentence

4 redacted, please.

5 MR. JONES: Yes.

6 Q. Did you obtain any information at any stage about which units or

7 which fighters were involved in Kravica?

8 A. Yes, I have. It was Golic, Ejub Golic from Glogova who led the

9 attack because he was, from the stories from the talks from people that I

10 know from Glogova and from Voljevica and that area, it was very important

11 first of all for food and also strategically very important because we

12 had an isolated area of Cerska and Konjevic Polje Pobrdje area was

13 totally isolated and had a very strong hold of -- Serbian stronghold in

14 Kravica it would be very important for Golic to take that over in order

15 to connect Glogova together with Cerska, isolated area of Cerska.

16 Q. Do you know whether or not people from Cerska or Konjevic Polje

17 participated in the action?

18 A. I presume they would -- they participated in the action from the

19 other side.

20 Q. You mentioned Pobrdje several times. Unfortunately that doesn't

21 appear on our map. Can you name a village or hamlet in that area so we

22 can locate it?

23 A. Yeah, Lozica, Sandici, Pervani, Burnice. That area.

24 Q. Now, you've spoken already about attempts of people to return to

25 return to Glogova in this period. As far as you know, were those

Page 9584

1 attempts successful?

2 A. Those attempts were, you know, they were, the fighters would go

3 into Glogova have a they could not hold it whatsoever for long because

4 the support that was coming, the support from Bratunac, the support from

5 Kravica that was coming to Serbs was impossible to hold it because of all

6 the counterattacks and stuff in that area.

7 Q. You mentioned counterattacks. Can you explain at all what if

8 anything you observed or knew about Serbian counterattacks and how that

9 was carried out.

10 A. Well, I wasn't in Glogova but from people that I know from

11 Glogova that spoke to us they would say they were going to Glogova and

12 get into Glogova and then we counterattack from Serbian forces from

13 Bratunac for Kravica and right away knocked them out, kill whoever was in

14 their counterattacks from Bratunac from Kravica area and from where I was

15 they call cleaning the area.

16 Q. And --

17 A. There was no way to hold it.

18 Q. And do you know if that happened after this action in January

19 1993?

20 A. That happened quite often in even before and after because after

21 Kravica was taken over, Golic and his men of course tried to hold Glogova

22 and it was impossible to hold even then and then the counterattacks were

23 continuously coming from Bratunac area.

24 Q. Did you return to Kravica after the action?

25 A. Yes, I have. I've gone to Kravica after the action and I've seen

Page 9585

1 Kravica after the action. I had an aunt that lived in that village of

2 Burnice which is in Pobudje [Realtime transcript read in error:

3 "Pobrdje"] and I went through Kravica into Pobudje.

4 Q. Why apart from -- was that the only reason, going to see your

5 aunt or was there another reason for going there?

6 A. There was a reason to go see my aunt so I could get from her see

7 -- she did not move from her own village, so I hoping to gain food from

8 her and to go to see them, you know. Both reasons.

9 MR. JONES: Just for the transcript page 94, line 18, there is a

10 place called Pobrdje but the witness is referring to which is Pobudje.

11 Thank you.

12 Q. Now, when you passed through Kravica after the action, what if

13 anything did you see occurring in Kravica?

14 A. Yes, you can see people from surrounding villages, from Lolici,

15 Sandici, that area in Kravica taking tile roof tiles taking the windows,

16 doors, blocks from the houses, whatever they can get from the houses in

17 Kravica to take it to their homes and rebuild their homes.

18 Q. Do you know why they were rebuilding their homes?

19 A. I wasn't there very much before Kravica fell so I don't know

20 what's going on, but a lot from the shellings from the bombings, from the

21 burnings. That would be the reason. I definitely saw them take stuff

22 from Kravica into their villages.

23 Q. Now, you mentioned being in Srebrenica when General Morillon was

24 there. I'm only going to ask you this about that. You recollect General

25 Morillon coming to Srebrenica. My question is, is this, it's a general

Page 9586

1 question: How vividly do you remember the events of which you've spoken

2 this morning?

3 A. The events I spoke about this morning is events I'll never forget

4 in my life. Every single detail of it. And I'll always remember those.

5 That's the last things I saw and last things I'll always remember. Every

6 single detail of it.

7 Q. And then, finally, you explained at the beginning that the

8 shelling which occurred in which I think you said 60 or something

9 children were killed in fact. Can you help us with that? Do you know

10 how many people were killed or wounded?

11 A. My understanding there was about 60, 62 people killed on that day

12 and there was over 100 wounded on that day. The UN peacekeepers weren't

13 in there at that time.

14 Q. Did you ever hear if there was ever any investigation into the

15 massacre on the soccer field?

16 A. There was never an investigation that I know. There was no

17 plaque that marks anything that the massacre happened on that field.

18 There is no sign of anything to say this is what happened at the soccer

19 field. Nobody -- just forgot it like it never happened.

20 MR. JONES: And we have an exhibit which is the newspaper -- is a

21 newspaper article dated 29 September 2002, St. Petersburg Times. I'm

22 just dealing with that just for the record, I think it's useful to

23 submit. I believe the Prosecution has already seen a copy.

24 MR. WUBBEN: Yes, we have.

25 MR. JONES: I'd ask if that could be given a Defence exhibit

Page 9587

1 number.

2 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. By all means. This will be Defence Exhibit

3 D71 --


5 JUDGE AGIUS: 3, yes. And that is an article from St. Petersburg

6 Times entitled "Hope for change seen amid tale of tragedy." By Mary Jane

7 Park, consisting of two pages and in English. Thank you.

8 MR. JONES: Thank you. That completes my examination-in-chief.

9 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. St. Petersburg, where would this be? I

10 would take it that it is some St. Petersburg, somewhere in the United

11 States.

12 MR. JONES: I believe it's Florida but the witness can answer.

13 THE WITNESS: That's a city where I went to school in Florida.

14 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Okay. Thank you. So I --

15 MR. JONES: My apologies, Your Honour, I also propose to tender

16 the map.

17 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, yes.

18 MR. JONES: It hasn't been in issue but --

19 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't -- but if there is no point in asking the

20 witness to initialise it in any case.

21 THE WITNESS: I can initial it, Your Honour. I can put my two

22 letters if needed.

23 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't think it is needed. We will just give it a

24 number and this will be D714. All right.

25 MR. JONES: Thank you, Mr. Bekric.

Page 9588

1 THE WITNESS: Thank you.

2 JUDGE AGIUS: So I think that concludes today's sitting. You

3 will need to return tomorrow, Mr. Bekric, in the morning. We have

4 sitting starting hopefully at 9.00 in Trial Chamber II, if I am not

5 mistaken. And tomorrow you will be cross-examined by Mr. Wubben who is

6 lead counsel for the Prosecution. Do you expect to finish your

7 cross-examination tomorrow, Mr. Wubben?

8 MR. WUBBEN: Yes, Your Honour.

9 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Basically that means we will finish

10 there. We won't have anyone on Friday or for Friday.

11 MR. JONES: That's correct.

12 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. We stand adjourned. Please make sure

13 that the witness is given all the assistance he requires. Thank you.

14 Good afternoon to everyone.

15 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.27 p.m.