1 Tuesday, 9 June 2009
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness takes the stand]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.01 a.m.
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: Good morning to everybody in and around the
8 Madam Registrar, will you please call the case.
9 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. Good morning to
10 everyone in the courtroom. This is case number IT-04-81-T, the
11 Prosecutor versus Momcilo Perisic.
12 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you so much. May we have the appearances
13 for today, starting with the Prosecution, please.
14 MR. HARMON: Yes, good morning, Your Honour. Good morning to
15 everyone in the courtroom, Mark Harmon and Bronagh McKenna for the
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much and for the Defence.
18 Mr. Lukic.
19 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours. Good
20 morning to everyone in the proceedings. Mr. Perisic is represented today
21 by Daniela Tasic, Tina Drolec, Milos Androvic, Gregor Guy-Smith,
22 Novak Lukic, and two new interns and these are David Montano and
23 Michelle Ternus-Nugent. And with your permission we would like them to
24 be in the courtroom.
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much, Mr. Lukic.
1 Good, Mr. Starcevic. Again I got to do the ritual. You are
2 still bound by the declaration that you made yesterday to tell the truth
3 whole truth and nothing else but the truth.
4 WITNESS: MIODRAG STARCEVIC [Resumed]
5 [Witness answered through interpreter]
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Harmon.
7 MR. HARMON: Thank you.
8 Examination by Mr. Harmon: [Continued]
9 Q. Good morning, Mr. Starcevic.
10 A. Good morning.
11 MR. HARMON: Could we go into private session.
12 JUDGE MOLOTO: May the Chamber please move into private session.
13 [Private session] [Confidentiality partially lifted by order of the Chamber]
14 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, we're in private session.
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you very much.
16 Yes, Mr. Harmon.
17 MR. HARMON:
18 Q. Mr. Starcevic, yesterday we ended with Prosecution Exhibit 2418,
19 which was a 30th Personnel Centre recommendation to end professional
20 military service of a man named Antic. I want to complete the story on
21 Mr. Antic.
22 MR. HARMON: So if I could have 65 ter 9439.06 on the monitor,
24 Q. Mr. Starcevic, you see the document in front of you on the
25 monitor? Could you --
1 A. I see it, yes.
2 Q. Kindly look at that document and ...
3 A. Yes I have seen it.
4 Q. First of all, okay. Identify this document. This is an order of
5 the chief of personnel administration of the General Staff of the
6 Yugoslav Army, and it's dated 5th of February, 1996. And it is a
7 document which ends the professional military service for Zoran Antic, on
8 the basis that he was absent without leave for five consecutive days.
9 MR. HARMON: Could we go to the end of the document, each of the
10 documents and see who signed this document.
11 Q. Do you see a name at the bottom right-hand corner, Mr. Starcevic,
12 and can you identify the person?
13 A. Yes. Chief of the administration, Major-General Dusan Zoric.
14 Q. So he is a member of the VJ; correct?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Now, yesterday in court, at page 80 of LiveNote, you said that
17 the judgement of a VRS military disciplinary court could not serve as a
18 basis for terminating service of a VJ officer.
19 Do you recall that testimony?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Who does have the ultimate authority, Mr. Starcevic, to
22 discipline, to punish, and to terminate from service VJ -- a VJ soldier
23 who was transferred to the VRS or transferred to the -- to serve in the
25 A. In any case, if it is a member of the Army of Yugoslavia, then it
1 is under the jurisdiction of a certain senior officer of the Army of
2 Yugoslavia. Of course, you cannot exactly say which one because that
3 depends on the order that is referred to in the introduction of the
4 document. In any case, it would be in the hands of the authorised
5 official of the Army of Yugoslavia, if that person happens to be a member
6 of the Army of Yugoslavia.
7 Q. Okay. And in this case, Mr. Starcevic, if we take a look at the
8 document and the text of this document.
9 MR. HARMON: If we can go to the first page of the English.
10 Q. And under the statement of reasons, we can see that there is an
11 reference in the second line to Mr. Antic being absent without leave from
12 the 13th of March, 1995, which was the date which was referenced in the
13 previous document, P2417, which was the judgement.
14 So in terms of the termination of Mr. Antic, then, can you give
15 us your view in respect of the procedures and the process that was used
16 to terminate him, as reflected in this particular document that's before
18 A. Evidently in this case, Mr. Antic was terminated from service
19 because he left a military unit without permission and spent longer than
20 five days absent.
21 Q. Okay. Five days absent from the VRS unit in which he was
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Lukic.
24 A. Where he was serving --
25 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I think that this is a leading
1 question that does not arise from this document. I don't know how
2 Mr. Harmon can put this question to the witness who's now just providing
3 his own expert opinion. Now we're in the again terrain of his expert
4 opinions and not facts.
5 MR. HARMON: Your Honour, the previous two documents reflected
6 the unit in which this witness was serving, so in terms of -- merely I'm
7 putting what was contained in a previous document to this witness. I'm
8 not leading him to that conclusion. I'm referring him back to the two
9 previous documents that he --
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: That's what I thought. I thought that was
11 established yesterday. Objection overruled.
12 MR. HARMON:
13 Q. And so -- yeah, okay, the question has been answered, I see, on
14 the record.
15 MR. HARMON: Could this be admitted into evidence and given an
16 exhibit number.
17 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I stand by the objection and would
18 like to have this document just MFI'd, based on Article 27.
19 MR. HARMON: May I comment, Your Honour, on Article 27?
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: You may.
21 MR. HARMON: Just ...
22 Your Honour, there's -- let me just have one minute to look at
24 I'll reserve my arguments for later, Your Honour.
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: Indeed. I thought we had agreed on that
2 MR. HARMON: I'll do that later on, yes.
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay.
4 MR. HARMON: Could I then have this given an exhibit number and
5 marked for identification.
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: May it please be given and exhibit number and
7 marked for identification. Under seal?
8 MR. HARMON: Yes, please.
9 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will be Exhibit P2419, marked
10 for identification, under seal.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
12 MR. HARMON:
13 Q. I'd like to turn now, if I could, Mr. Starcevic, to three
14 documents and solicit your views. They are in the same theme we had been
15 pursuing in respect of Mr. Antic's documents.
16 MR. HARMON: If I could, first of all, have 65 ter 9440.03 on the
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: 944.
19 MR. HARMON: It's 9440.03.
20 Q. Sir, let's -- have you seen this document before coming into
21 court today? This deals with a -- this is a military disciplinary court
22 judgement relating to a number of persons, including Major Vujic.
23 A. Yes, I see it, but I really don't know if --
24 Q. Okay. We'll go through this document and slowly.
25 Let, first of all, if we go to the end of the document to
1 determine which court this was. And we can do what we did yesterday,
2 look at the last portion of the decision, and it says on the area of
3 instruction on appeal.
4 Can you tell the Court -- first of all, this is a military
5 disciplinary court of which jurisdiction?
6 A. The Army of Republika Srpska.
7 Q. Okay.
8 MR. HARMON: And if we could go to the front page, then, of this
9 document. We can see in this -- just the upper left-hand corner, we can
10 see this is a military disciplinary court attached to the air force and
11 PVO command. There is a number of this decision. It is 1-Dis 33/95 and
12 dated 20th September, 1995.
13 If we could go to the second page of the English. And we can see
14 in the second page of the English the judgement of the court.
15 Q. Do you see that? Do you see that in your language,
16 Mr. Starcevic?
17 A. Yes, yes.
18 Q. Identified in the judgement is Major Vujic and --
19 A. Correct.
20 Q. -- it indicates that -- where it says there guilty, the first
21 line -- again these people were serving in a unit VP 7272 in Banja Luka;
22 is that correct?
23 A. Correct.
24 Q. Now, if we could see what the sentences were in this.
25 MR. HARMON: If we could go to page 3 in English. And ...
1 Q. Do you see what the sentence was for Mr. Vujic, number 2?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. What was the sentence?
4 A. Termination of service as an active member of the military.
5 Q. Okay. Now, this is a series of documents.
6 MR. HARMON: If I could have this document marked for -- given an
7 exhibit number and marked for identification, Your Honour.
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: It's admitted. May it be given an exhibit number
9 and marked for identification.
10 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will be Exhibit P2420, marked
11 for identification.
12 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
13 Mr. Harmon, do you want to keep it under seal?
14 MR. HARMON: Yes, sir, I'm sorry.
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: Under seal, Madam Registrar.
16 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, Your Honour.
18 Q. Now could we take a look at a related document. It is
19 65 ter 9440.04.
20 Mr. Starcevic, this is a document from the command of the RV and
21 the air force and the anti-aircraft defence, and it's dated 29th of
22 January, 1996. It is addressed to the General Staff of the Yugoslav Army
23 to the personnel administration, and it refers to a document from the
24 30th Personnel Centre, and it gives a number.
25 Now, have you seen this document before, Mr. Starcevic?
1 A. Well, I really cannot remember. It's possible that I did.
2 Q. Okay. Let's -- let me focus, first of all, on the first
3 paragraph. It says:
4 "In the attachment, we are sending you the judgements rendered by
5 the military disciplinary court attached to the command of the air force
6 and PVO of the 30th Personnel Centre with which the following members of
7 the RV and PVO were sentenced to termination of service ..."
8 Do you see first person --
9 A. Yes, yes.
10 Q. The first person is Mr. Vujic?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Vujic; yes, sir.
13 A. Vujic, yes, yes.
14 MR. HARMON: Can we go to page 2 of the English version. If we
15 could scroll down.
16 Q. Do you see the section, Mr. Starcevic, that reads:
17 "I am sending you the judgements because we have assessed the
18 following ..."
19 MR. HARMON: In the English it's at the top of the page.
20 Q. Do you see that section?
21 A. Yes, yes.
22 Q. Can you focus, Mr. Starcevic, on the paragraph that is
23 immediately below the words I just read. It starts with:
24 "That the proceedings of the trial ..."
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Okay?
2 A. Yes, yes, I have seen it.
3 Q. Okay.
4 A. However, I cannot read all of the text, all of the reasons
5 because the copy is pretty illegible, the -- below the paragraphs that
6 you referred to.
7 Q. Let me, if I could, assist you, Mr. Starcevic. I can read the
8 text very slowly that I'd like to you comment on.
9 It reads as follows:
10 "I am sending you the judgements because I have assessed the
11 following: That the proceedings of the trial and the rendering of the
12 judgements were not conducted in accordance with the regulations on
13 military discipline in the VJ. Namely, the persons involved are members
14 of the RV and PVO who have been sent temporarily to work in the units of
15 the 30th Personnel Centre; and therefore, in our opinion, the conducting
16 of proceedings for the violation of military discipline by the above
17 members of the RV and PVO is in the jurisdiction of the military
18 disciplinary court attached to the command of the air force and PVO; ..."
19 Do you see that?
20 A. Yes, I see it. But I am confused by the text.
21 Q. Okay. Tell me -- let -- before you comment on that, on the text,
22 Mr. Starcevic, let me -- first of all, let's identify which document --
23 which entity has created this document.
24 MR. HARMON: Could we go to the end of the document.
25 Q. Can you identify who the person is who sent this document?
1 A. Colonel General -- Lieutenant-General Ljubisa Velickovic,
2 commander of the RV and the PVO.
3 Q. Do you know in which army he served in?
4 A. Yes, the Army of Yugoslavia.
5 Q. So if we can go back to the text that I have referred to.
6 Could you then put -- assist us with this text in what your view
7 is of this text?
8 A. Yes. Evidently here, General Velickovic believes that
9 proceedings cannot be conducted against persons temporarily deployed to
10 the 30th Personnel Centre before the military courts of that centre, and
11 that possible proceedings would be under the jurisdiction of the
12 disciplinary court at the command where he was, the command of the air
13 force and the anti-aircraft defence of the Army of Yugoslavia. And if
14 you're seeking my opinion, I believe that General Velickovic's position
15 is well grounded.
16 Q. All right. Thank you.
17 MR. HARMON: Then, Your Honour, I would ask that this document be
18 admitted and given an exhibit number and placed under seal.
19 JUDGE MOLOTO: [Microphone not activated] ... marked for
21 MR. HARMON: Yes, sir.
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
23 Madam Registrar, will you help us please.
24 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will be Exhibit P2421, marked
25 for identification, under seal. Oh, sorry.
1 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I would just like to comment on this
3 I have no objection to this document being admitted, and I'm not
4 seeking that it be MFI'd because the witness has personal knowledge of
5 this particular matter relating to General Velickovic.
6 MR. HARMON: All right. Then we're happy to have the MFI status
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: Will you please remove the MFI status, Madam.
9 THE REGISTRAR: That will be Exhibit P2421, under seal, Your
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
12 MR. HARMON:
13 Q. And, finally, Mr. Starcevic, to complete the story of Mr. Vujic,
14 I would like to show you 65 ter 9440.05.
15 Mr. Starcevic, please take a look at this document, and tell us
16 if you've seen this document before.
17 A. Well, it's hard to say if I've seen it or not. But I've seen a
18 lot of these documents this one, also, I assume. But I really cannot be
19 100 percent sure.
20 Q. All right. This is a document that relates to the previous two
21 documents. It related to Mr. Vujic, and it's an order terminating his
22 service, and it's dated 12th of October, 2005.
23 MR. HARMON: Could we see just at the end -- could we see at the
24 end who is -- the name appears at the bottom. Yes, thank you.
25 Q. Do you see the -- can you identify the person who signed this
2 A. Yes. Major-General Vladan Marjanovic. I assume that he is the
3 commander of the RV and the PVO.
4 Q. So we can see that nine years after the -- the concern expressed
5 by the previous general that Mr. Vujic was finally terminated from
7 A. [No interpretation]
8 Q. Okay.
9 MR. HARMON: This is only for purposes of completing the story,
10 Your Honour. I ask that this be admitted, marked for identification, and
11 placed under seal.
12 JUDGE MOLOTO: May it please be given an exhibit number, marked
13 for identification, and placed under seal, Madam Registrar.
14 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will be Exhibit P2422, marked
15 for identification, under seal.
16 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
17 MR. HARMON: Thank you.
18 Now if we could turn to another series of documents related to
19 the same topic.
20 Q. Mr. Starcevic, I'm going to, first of all, to introduce these
21 documents, I need to --
22 MR. HARMON: First of all, if I can have 65 ter 9549 doc ID
23 06427102 on the monitor.
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: Do you still want to be in private session,
25 Mr. Harmon?
1 MR. HARMON: Yes, this is a protected document.
2 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
3 MR. HARMON:
4 Q. This is merely to identify who is the person whose record I'm
5 going to show on the next page, where there is no identification.
6 So this is a -- can you identify what this is, Mr. Starcevic?
7 A. Yes. This is a personal sheet of Kosojevic, Ljubo.
8 MR. HARMON: Could this be marked for identification and given an
9 exhibit number, marked for identification, and placed under seal,
10 Your Honour.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: It is admitted into evidence, marked for
12 identification, under seal.
13 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will be Exhibit P2423, marked
14 for identification, under seal.
16 MR. HARMON: Could we have 65 ter 9549.01 as the next item on the
17 monitor. Okay.
18 By way of explanation, Your Honour, the reason I introduced the
19 previous document because there is no identifiers on this document, but
20 this is contained within the personnel file.
21 So if we could --
22 Q. If I could focus your attention, first of all, on two items,
23 Mr. Starcevic, can you see the line that reads: "Commander of the
25 It is in the fifth line.
1 A. Yes, yes, yes.
2 Q. Can you tell us in which unit Mr. Kosojevic was serving?
3 A. In the Light Infantry Brigade of the land forces of the
4 30th Personnel Centre in Belgrade.
5 Q. And if we go to the far right-hand column, it says PSU and then
6 there are some numbers. Can you tell us what those mean?
7 A. I think that was an order issued by the personnel administration,
8 pursuant to which he was assigned to this post.
9 Q. And, finally, let me direct your attention to the text at the
10 bottom of this document.
11 Can you tell us what that text means, what it is and what it
13 A. It says here that his service is being terminated on account of a
14 five days absence without leave, and, again, pursuant to a document
15 issued by the personnel administration.
16 Q. And the number -- the identifying number on that document was
17 200-59, it was issued on 9 May 1995; correct?
18 A. Correct.
19 MR. HARMON: Could this be marked -- given an exhibit number and
20 marked for identification and placed under seal, Your Honour.
21 JUDGE MOLOTO: It is admitted into evidence. May it please be
22 given an exhibit number, MFI, and u.s.
23 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will be Exhibit P2424, marked
24 for identification, under seal.
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
1 MR. HARMON: Could I have -- yes. Could I have 65 ter 9549.06 on
2 the monitor.
3 Q. Mr. Starcevic, if you just review that document and ...
4 MR. HARMON: If we can scroll down for the benefit --
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I see it.
6 MR. HARMON: Okay.
7 Q. Now, what is this document, Mr. Starcevic, that's before you?
8 A. This actually implies initiation of procedure to terminate the
9 professional service for Ljubo Kosojevic.
10 Q. And which entity made the proposal to terminate his service?
11 A. Judging by the seal, this was proposed by the Deputy Commander,
12 Colonel Radislav Krstic.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: Could we scroll the English so that we see what
14 the witness is talking about, please.
15 MR. HARMON: Yes. You have to go to the next page, Your Honour.
16 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
17 MR. HARMON: Okay.
18 Q. And there's a stamp on this document that we can see in the
19 left-hand corner from the General Staff of the Army of the
20 Republika Srpska.
21 MR. HARMON: Could we -- let me just make one other observation
22 on --
23 Q. On the statement of reasons in this document, Mr. Starcevic, we
24 can see that Mr. Kosojevic had abandoned his units to which he had been
25 assigned to perform his tasks on 24 November 1994. So that's the date he
1 went AWOL. He went AWOL; is that correct?
2 A. That's right.
3 Q. Okay. Now the proposal as we see on this as well is --
4 references Law on the Army of Yugoslavia, Article 107, item 2, which we
5 have discussed previously. So this --
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. And this, as we see in the upper left-hand corner this document
8 was issued by the Drina Corps command; correct?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. So this -- this document, then, Mr. Starcevic, is a proposal to
11 the -- to terminate this gentleman, correct, based on Yugoslavia Army
13 A. That's right.
14 Q. Okay. Now, let me just -- this leads up to the final document,
15 which I'd like to show you.
16 MR. HARMON: If this could be given an exhibit number, MFI'd, and
17 under seal.
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: [Microphone not activated]
19 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours that will be Exhibit P2425, marked
20 for identification, under seal.
21 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
22 MR. HARMON:
23 Q. Finally, in this series, sir, let me go to 65 ter 9549.08.
24 Could you take a look at that document, Mr. Starcevic, please.
25 A. Yes, I see it.
1 Q. Let's, first of all, let's identify it. It's an order. It's
2 order that was referred to in the exhibit earlier, 200-59, and it's an
3 order of the personnel administration of the Yugoslav Army, dated the 9th
4 of May.
5 MR. HARMON: Could we go to the end of the document to see who is
6 the person whose name appears at the end.
7 Q. Whose name is that, sir?
8 A. Chief of the personnel administration, Major-General Dusan Zoric.
9 Q. Okay. Now, in this case, this -- what does this document do in
10 relation to the service of Mr. Kosojevic?
11 A. It means that his service in the Yugoslav Army has been
13 Q. Okay. And we earlier saw, Mr. Starcevic, a recommendation from
14 the Drina Corps in the VRS to terminate Mr. Kosojevic's service. Can you
15 comment for us on process under which Mr. Kosojevic was terminated. In
16 other words, on the basis of a recommendation from a separate army, is it
17 proper to terminate a soldier in the VJ?
18 A. It is very difficult to perceive this matter in this way. The
19 proposal -- or a proposal is not a binding document, although it is part
20 of a formal procedure leading to termination. It is not customary to
21 submit a proposal from one army to another. I think that this is not a
22 legal issue.
23 Q. Okay. And when you say you think it's not a legal issue, what do
24 you mean by that?
25 A. To put it simply, the proposal, per se, as a document, does not
1 imply any obligation on anyone. The jurisdictions have been set up in a
2 different manner, and the only thing that is legally formalised is to
3 render a decision based on somebody's proposal.
4 Q. All right. Thank you very much.
5 MR. HARMON: Your Honour, could this be admitted, MFI'd, and
6 placed under seal, please.
7 JUDGE MOLOTO: It is admitted. May it be given and exhibit
8 number, MFI'd, and under seal, please.
9 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will be Exhibit P2426, marked
10 for identification, under seal.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
12 MR. HARMON:
13 Q. Now, I want to change the topic a bit, Mr. Starcevic, and look at
14 one final exhibit.
15 MR. HARMON: If we could have Prosecution Exhibit 1009 on the
16 monitor, please.
17 Q. Take a moment, Mr. Starcevic, just to look at this document.
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: Are these documents --
19 MR. HARMON: Yes, sir.
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: -- the same documents in different versions?
21 MR. HARMON: It should be a single version of one document,
22 Your Honour.
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: Well, what I mean is in different languages, two
24 languages. The formatting doesn't look like -- correspond.
25 MR. HARMON: Well, it doesn't, as a matter of fact.
1 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I think that the next page of this
2 document in B/C/S is the proper one.
3 MR. HARMON: Thank you, Mr. Lukic.
4 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, Mr. Lukic.
5 Okay. Now we've got something that looks like this.
6 Q. All right. Thank you.
7 MR. HARMON: Could we -- could you just take a look at this
9 JUDGE MOLOTO: And could we zoom in the English, please.
10 MR. HARMON:
11 Q. Now I think, actually -- actually, I think this is not the
12 [indiscernible] English version of this document.
13 The document -- maybe we could proceed this way. The document ID
14 on this document that I'm looking for is 06465198. It's page 3 of the
15 B/C/S and page 1 of the English.
16 Yes, that appears to be what I'm looking for in the -- yes, we
17 now have the proper documents on the monitor. Thank you.
18 Mr. Starcevic, this is an order. Can you tell us whose order
19 this is?
20 MR. HARMON: Scroll down a little on the -- or up a little on the
21 B/C/S. Thank you.
22 A. This is an order of the president of the Federal Republic of
24 Q. And this is an order on supplying the 30th and 40th
25 Personnel Centre with weapons and military equipment ; correct?
1 A. Correct.
2 Q. Now, the 30th and 40th -- assuming the 30th and 40th
3 Personnel Centre is the VRS and the SVK, respectively, is this a proper
4 order from President Lilic directing that the Yugoslav Army provide
5 weapons to those separate armies?
6 A. First of all, I would like to correct you. That's not an
7 instruction; it's an order.
8 Q. I said order, Mr. Starcevic. I did say instruction so perhaps
9 there was translation --
10 A. I heard in the translation an instruction or a guideline.
11 Q. I'm sorry, it is an order.
12 A. Okay.
13 [Interpretation] That means that this is a binding document to --
14 for the recipient. It is it difficult to say whether this is
15 inappropriate or not, because this is based on a political decision.
16 There is no obligation under the law for the Yugoslav Army or Yugoslavia,
17 as a country, to provide supplies to any other army.
18 Q. Okay. So if we take a look at the second paragraph of this
19 document, it says:
20 "The chief of the General Staff of the Yugoslav Army is hereby
21 authorised to reconcile the requests of the 30th and 40th
22 Personnel Centre with the means of the Yugoslav Army and specifically
23 regulate the method and procedures for providing the supplies from item 1
24 of this Order."
25 Now, does this order, Mr. Starcevic, in your view, give
1 General Perisic the authority and the right to distribute weapons,
2 ammunition, other supplies to the VRS and to the SVK?
3 A. Yes. He's actually being ordered to take care about providing
4 these supplies, but in doing so, to bear in mind the available resources
5 of the Yugoslav Army.
6 Therefore, he is authorised which means that he is obliged and
7 authorised to supply the 30th and the 40th Personnel Centres but to take
8 due care about their needs, on the one hand, and the availability of the
9 resources of the Yugoslav Army to provide these supplies.
10 [Prosecution counsel confer]
11 MR. HARMON:
12 Q. Thank you very much, Mr. Starcevic.
13 MR. HARMON: I have no additional question, Your Honour.
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, Mr. Harmon.
15 MR. HARMON: I -- I'm fine, yes, thank you.
16 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Lukic.
17 Cross-examination by Mr. Lukic:
18 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Starcevic. I'm going to ask
19 you questions on behalf of the Defence team of Mr. Perisic.
20 Two pieces of information before we start this cross-examination.
21 The two of us speak the same language, and we understand each other more
22 quickly than the interpreters will be able to translate. Therefore, I
23 kindly ask you to --
24 MR. HARMON: We're still in private session, Your Honour, so I --
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: May the Chamber please move into open session.
1 Thank you, Mr. Harmon.
2 [Open session]
3 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, we're back in open session.
4 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
5 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. Therefore, I will kindly ask you to pause after my question, and
7 I will do the same after you answer, so that the translation will reflect
8 properly what we are saying. And, secondly, we have prepared documents
9 that we're going to discuss which are in the database of this court, but
10 I also have provided hard copies. I've notice that you have problems in
11 reading the documents from the screen, so, therefore, if you encountered
12 any problems in that sense, and you prefer hard copies with the leave of
13 the Chamber, I will provide this for you. So feel free to ask for hard
14 copies whenever you need it.
15 I'm going to start with the first set of questions by establishes
16 a context that we are -- context that we are going to discuss later and
17 that is a historical and social context which is something that you have
18 been testifying to in these previous few days, but we would like to paint
19 a picture relating to the period with which you are personally
21 I assume, Mr. Starcevic, that you will agree with me that the
22 single legal system that was in place in the Socialist Federal Republic
23 of Yugoslavia was, in many respects, ceased to function in the last years
24 of the existence of that state?
25 A. Yes, that's definitely true.
1 Q. That primarily was reflected in the paralysis of the federal
3 A. Yes, primarily for the most part.
4 Q. And that the political events and the conflicts that ensued while
5 this country was still existing in the late 1980s actually brought about
6 a total paralysis of the legal system in the country and, for the most
7 part, in the functioning of the federal state.
8 A. Yes, I can agree with that.
9 Q. Would you agree with me in saying that the political reality of
10 disintegration of a legal system required new systems to be put in place
11 that would reflect the changes in society?
12 A. Yes that would have been a reasonable way to pursue.
13 Q. You cannot change society in line with the regulations, but it
14 should be vice versa. This is what I generally perceive as political
16 A. In principle, yes. This is generally applicable everywhere.
17 Law, as a science, is a little bit lazy in following, reflecting social
18 changes, and it's lagging behind which is only a logical consequence of
19 the nature of the law as science.
20 Q. So when a changes in a legal system need to be made, they are
21 based on the previously adopted political decisions.
22 A. That's right. Because the law is also a result of a political
23 struggle of various tendencies in society and it creates a political
24 concept only until such time when it is adopted as the law. When that
25 happens, it loses its political connotations and notions, and this is
1 what today we define as the rule of law.
2 Q. The disintegration of the Socialist Republic of Yugoslavia was
3 very much reflected and had a strong impact on the
4 Yugoslav People's Army?
5 A. Definitely.
6 Q. With the withdrawal of the JNA from Slovenia, Croatia, Macedonia,
7 and subsequently partly from Bosnia and Herzegovina actually led to the
8 transfer of a large number of military personnel to what was later to be
9 called the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia [as interpreted]?
10 A. Yes, that is true to a great extent.
11 Q. In fact, the whole Military District dissolved very quickly that
12 used to function before and had their zones of responsibility. So in
13 actual fact, they ceased to exist; is that right?
14 A. Yes, and that was the worse consequence because we don't only
15 have the legal termination, but we also have the factual termination,
16 because the basic principles and norms that you used to function suddenly
17 ceased to exist.
18 Q. And you will agree with me that this has created huge problems
19 for the authorities and the state and for the political leadership of the
20 Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
21 A. Whether that was a problem for the entire political leadership of
22 Yugoslavia, I'm not quite sure about that, because I believe that part of
23 what we consider to be the political leadership of Yugoslavia at the time
24 were particularly those who contributed to the whole situation.
25 Q. I think that the Chamber is fully aware of that. I may have not
1 been quite precise.
2 If we look at the situation in 1992, when was the time when the
3 JNA left the territory of Bosnia-Herzegovina, and after May, when the
4 constitution of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was established, I'm
5 referring to this political leadership; and my question was whether they
6 saw the problem, this political problems.
7 A. That was particularly problematic for the remaining part of the
8 country that was called the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
9 Q. Actually, a huge number of professional officers of JNA were left
10 without their posts per establishment, and they all arrived the FRY.
11 On the other hand, let us shed a different light on this context
12 which is important. Military conflict kept going on in Croatia and
13 Bosnia-Herzegovina. We are talking about 1992, and we will come to the
14 time when Mr. Perisic was appointed the Chief of Staff.
15 In this military conflict that was raging in Croatia and
16 Bosnia-Herzegovina, there was active participation of many professional
17 servicemen of the then-JNA, both while it was still there and after its
18 withdrawal; is that correct?
19 A. Yes.
20 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: The speakers are kindly
21 asked to slow down a bit and pause between questions and answers.
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: The interpreters would like you to please slow
24 And before you even ask the next question, can I understand one
25 thing. The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was established, and after it
1 had been established, the army continued to be called the JNA or did it
2 also -- did the change to the VJ at the time that it -- the country
3 changed to the FRY?
4 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I think that we will come to that.
5 But we can put this question to the witness.
6 Q. Mr. Starcevic, we know that the Law on the Army of Yugoslavia was
7 adopted later, but does the constitution of the Federal Republic of
8 Yugoslavia create a new term and practically was the Army of Yugoslavia
9 formed under the constitution that was adopted?
10 A. Well, it's -- it would be hard to say that it was formed. What
11 was left of the former JNA with the adoption of the new constitution had
12 its name changed, and it became the Army of Yugoslavia.
13 Q. When was the constitution adopted, approximately? All right.
14 We're not going to -- all right.
15 Later we will show the document. We will come to that and then
16 we will ...
17 I assume that you are familiar with the fact that these officers
18 of the former JNA, because now I'm moving to the formation of the new
20 You will agree with me, first, that at a certain point in time
21 the armies were formed -- I'm going to start an order, the Army of the
22 Republic of Croatia, the Army of the Army of the B and H, the Army of
23 Republika Srpska, the Serbian Army of the Krajina, and even there is an
24 Army of Herceg-Bosna, but the Army of Macedonia.
25 Would you agree with me with me that after the forming of those
1 armies, the gist or their corps was formed by former JNA officers who had
2 had joined those armies. What you are aware of from your personal
3 experience, please?
4 A. Many of those newly created armies had former JNA officers as
5 their members who had opted to join them, based on an ethnic,
6 territorial, or some other criterion and remained in these newly formed
7 states. But it seems to me that it is a little bit unfortunate that even
8 though they had opted for those armies, not all of those newly formed
9 armies gave them a key role.
10 In many of those armies, the key roles were assign to some other
11 people who, overnight without any kind of military experience or
12 education or knowledge, were promoted to the highest ranks, and although
13 many -- well, many. A fair number of former members of the JNA had opted
14 to remain in their new states. It is my impression that they, for the
15 most part, were under-appreciated in those new countries and armies,
16 although there are exceptions.
17 Q. You are also aware, probably, that certain JNA officers joined
18 those armies and, in the course of 1992, after they returned to the
19 territory of the FRY with the JNA, they later went back and voluntarily
20 joined those armies? I'm talking about the period before the
21 Personnel Centres were formed. We will come to that topic.
22 A. Yes, I am familiar with that, and some of those examples are
23 honourable examples of those officers' contribution to taking their units
24 out of the chaos, bringing them back to safety, and only then opting to
25 return to the newly formed armies of these new states.
1 Q. Let us look at one document now. It's document 1D04-0216.
2 The document has three pages, and we will cover it quickly.
3 This is a report on the numerical strength of personnel financed
4 from the budget of the Yugoslav Army. The document is a document from
5 the General Staff of the Yugoslav Army from August 1993.
6 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can we now look at page 2 of this
8 Q. And please go ahead and look at the document. And then, after
9 you finish, I can put a few questions to you. And if you don't see it
10 very well on the screen, I can provide a hard copy.
11 And when you read it, please, let me know.
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. This document, can we scroll it up a little bit just so that we
14 can see who signed it.
15 The document was signed by chief of the General Staff of the army
16 of -- the Yugoslav Army, Colonel General Zivota Panic; is that correct?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. You aware that he was the chief of the General Staff of
19 Yugoslav Army before Momcilo Perisic, and this is a document from that
20 period immediately before the change at the top of the General Staff.
21 Do you agree that this document indicated, particularly in
22 relation to the first passage, that there is an certain number of people
23 in the Yugoslav Army -- actually, in the army of Republika Srpska, who
24 are financed by the Yugoslav Army?
25 A. Yes, this is something that does arise from that document.
1 Q. In paragraph 3, it's a larger paragraph, persons are mentioned
2 who are temporarily engaged, according to Article 271 of the Law in the
3 Service in the armed forces, which was in force then; this is what is
4 meant; is that correct?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. So that was the basis on which they were, at the time, sent to
7 the Army of Republika Srpska and the Army of the Serbian Krajina; is that
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And then it says here in the next sentence:
11 "The status of these persons is regulated in the service of the
12 Yugoslav Army, even though, in practice, they are not occupying these
13 posts ..."
14 This document indicates state of affairs whereby person who are
15 not in the Yugoslav Army on certain duties are recognised, the rights
16 that they would have; is that correct?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. For a moment, can we now look at page 3 of this document.
19 This document is a table which speaks for itself, practically,
20 and it indicates their, let me put it that way, status as officers,
21 non-commissioned officers, contract soldiers, civilians, meaning all
22 those four categories that we're going to see later that are appearing in
23 the Personnel Centres and in those decisions, which will take place in
24 1993, which were present before -- actually, before General Perisic was
25 appointed to the chief of the General Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia; is
1 that correct?
2 A. Yes.
3 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can we please -- I would like to
4 tender this document for admission.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Lukic, what's the relationship between the
6 witness and this document compared to what we've been dealing with
8 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I think that this witness very
9 clearly and factually indicated here that he is aware of the facts from
10 this document. That is the way I put the question. Well, let me -- I'm
11 going to tell you now, Your Honours, although later there will be
12 document where I'm going to agree for them to be admitted as MFI, if
13 Mr. Harmon begins to present my position [as interpreted]. But I am
14 putting witness -- to the witness questions that officers from the JNA,
15 as a fact witness, left, and maintained a specific status in the service.
16 So that is the sense in which I put questions to this witness, and I
17 think that this is how I did establish the condition between the witness,
18 his factual knowledge about matters that are written in the document, and
19 the document itself.
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: If you -- if you -- if a document says it's 7.00
21 and the sun has arisen, and I read it and I say, Yes, agree. It is 7.00.
22 The sun has arisen, then does that establish the relationship between me
23 and the document?
24 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] No, no.
25 JUDGE MOLOTO: [Microphone not activated] I am aware of that.
1 I'm just trying to make sure we play the game; what is good for the goose
2 must be good for the gander.
3 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Yes. Your Honour, I still -- my
4 problem of interpreting Article 27 of the guide-lines is perhaps too
5 restrictive. Well, let's not go into it. We're going to write --
6 perhaps the best thing would be to put it in writing, but the way I am
7 interpreting the guideline, Article 27, indicates that witness knows
8 certain facts from the document, not for him to read them. That is how I
9 understand it.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. The document is admitted. May it please be
11 given an exhibit number.
12 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, that will be Exhibit D113.
13 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. Mr. Starcevic, can you please tell me, if you know, I'm going to
15 ask you about the general status -- statutory rights of the member of the
16 Yugoslav Army, or, rather, JNA. You are aware, on the basis of the laws
17 that were in force at the time of the JNA, the Law on Service in the JNA
18 and regulations that were in force at the time, and later with the
19 adoption of the Law on the Yugoslav Army and regulation which accompanied
20 this law, that each member of the JNA or Army of Yugoslavia had certain
21 statutory rights arising from their professional position?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. These rights also are due to them; in certain cases, to members
24 of their families; isn't that correct?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. The right to years of -- pensionable years of service is a result
2 of the years that a certain person spends in active service in the JNA or
3 the Yugoslav Army; and, on that basis, they have the right to a pension
4 from the army; is that correct?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Under certain regulations, this granted them the right to a
7 family pension on the basis of their status in the Army of Yugoslavia; is
8 that correct?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And rights to social and health benefits and the rights, also,
11 included the members of that person's family, arising from their
12 service-related status; isn't that correct?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Would you agree with me that -- would you agree with me that in
15 the JNA, in the Yugoslav Army, there was a well-known plan of health
16 benefits which was very comprehensive and quite privileged, compared to
17 regular health services?
18 A. I would like to avoid the word "privileged" because that also
19 affects me as a member of the armed services. We were not privileged.
20 It's just that the level of that health of service was at a higher level
21 because the people who provided it were better educated. They were more
22 professional, better trained, and very dedicated to their job.
23 Q. I have this image from that time that those people who did not
24 have service-related medical health rights that the members of the army
25 had in a way regretted not being able to use the services of the military
1 medical academy, which in Belgrade, in relation to other medical
2 institutions had a reputation as a -- a pre-eminent professional
3 high-quality service provider; is that correct?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Because of that, members of the army and the JNA also at their
6 disposal the possibility to use resorts, hotels, recreation facilities,
7 which were the exclusive property of the army; is that correct?
8 A. Yes, that is correct.
9 Q. I'm trying to remember everything. You also had the situation
10 where, based on their status, members of the army had double years of
11 service; is that correct?
12 A. Yes. But not all of them, just those who were performing
13 services which, in a way, involved service under more difficult
15 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, perhaps we can go on a
16 break now.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes. On that privileged note, we will take a
19 Come back at quarter to 11.00.
20 --- Recess taken at 10.17 a.m.
21 --- On resuming at 10.47 a.m.
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes, Mr. Lukic.
23 MR. LUKIC: Thank you.
24 Q. [Interpretation] Please, Mr. Starcevic, wait a little bit after
25 you start your answer.
1 A while ago, we had a discussion concerning status-related rights
2 deriving from the military status, and that is the housing rights
3 relating to the service.
4 Would you agree that under the Law on the Army, with regard to
5 their length of service, exercise and enjoy certain rights in terms of
6 housing and that is to be given an appropriate residence from the army;
7 that is to say, from the state; is that correct?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. I know that this category of being given a flat by the state, is
10 somewhat incomprehensible in this Tribunal, which was deemed to be
11 socially-owned property. What it meant is that certain person and his
12 family were given a flat for use for an indefinite period of time without
13 being given the right to ownership. This is in a nutshell; is that
15 A. Yes, that is how it was at the time.
16 Q. And after that, regulations were adopted that these flats could
17 be bought at a non-market prices, that is to say, at lower prices,
18 whereby they became owners of these flats and had full property rights on
19 them; is that right?
20 A. Yes, that's correct.
21 Q. Now, with respect to all the status-related rights that I
22 mentioned before, let me ask you this: If somebody ceases to be a member
23 of the military will lose all these status-related rights granted to him
24 under the law; is that correct?
25 A. Yes, in principle. But depending on the length of service that
1 he accumulated prior to the termination, he may retain some of the
3 Q. Which rights in particular, the pensionable years of service, I
5 A. [No interpretation]
6 Q. Let me take you as an example. You left the Yugoslav Army at a
7 certain point. Which particular rights have you retained that you
8 enjoyed previously as a member of the military?
9 A. I have exercised the right to a reduced pension, the right to the
10 flat that had been given to me, the right to health insurance in military
11 facilities, as you described them as privileged. I also retained the
12 right of use of holiday resorts that belonged to the army as retired
13 military serviceman, and there may be some more.
14 Q. Now, these right, as you said, you earned as a military
15 pensioner; right?
16 A. Yes, that's right.
17 Q. A theoretical question: If you went to live in another state,
18 you wouldn't be able to exercise your right to the pension from the army.
19 You would probably lose the flat used by you here, unless you had bought
20 it beforehand; is that right?
21 A. Yes, that's right. The right to pension is suspended for as long
22 as someone lives outside his homeland or state, and that includes also
23 right to use the flat, if the flat is unused for a certain period of
25 Q. As far as I remember, this relates to civil rights. There is a
1 provision that the tenancy right can be stripped off someone if they are
2 not using the flat.
3 A. That's correct. That applies to the cases of persons who had not
4 bought their flats.
5 Q. Let us now focus to another issue, which is also important, in my
6 view, for the context that we're going to discuss.
7 You will agree with me, and I think you already mentioned that
8 when we talked a while ago about the departure and the return of JNA
9 officers to and from Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia, et cetera.
10 Would you agree that there was a large number of JNA officers and
11 later VJ officers who felt a moral obligation to help the people from
12 which they originally hailed? I mean Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina in
13 the first place. That is not in dispute, I suppose.
14 A. That was, first of all, a personnel question for all these
15 officers, but I think that the majority of them felt a moral obligation
16 to be in the region of their origin, particularly because they had
17 families in those regions, parents, relatives, or maybe even property.
18 Q. I suppose you will agree with me that for those who wanted to
19 leave and did leave to join these armies, it was important for them that
20 the status of their families who had stayed behind in the FRY be
21 regulated, based on their acquired rights?
22 A. Yes. I suppose that was of paramount importance for them.
23 Q. Let us now look at document P730.
24 This is quite a long document, and I wouldn't like to go through
25 the whole of it.
1 Let us just look at the introductory part and then --
2 paragraph 1, and then we shall -- actually, I'm interested only in
3 paragraph 1.
4 Perhaps I should have asked for page 3 first in B/C/S so that we
5 can see who issued this decision.
6 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can we please look at the last page.
7 Q. So can you please look at paragraph 10 on this page.
8 A. Yes.
9 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can we now go to page 2, paragraph 7;
10 and that's, I think, page 4 in the English version.
11 Q. We can see that this is a decision taken by the president of the
12 FRY, Zoran Lilic. And it is based on the conclusion of the president of
13 the FRY, dated the 4th of May, 1992, as it is stated in the decision.
14 And this decision relates to the status-related rights of members of the
15 VJ, those who are engaged in the Serbian -- in the Army of the
16 Serbian Krajina.
17 This is an undated document, but you will agree with me that this
18 document was signed by Mr. Zoran Lilic, president of the FRY, and that it
19 was issued after the promulgation of the constitution of the FRY; is that
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. And the term "army" -- "Yugoslav Army" is being used here. Let
23 me first ask: Have you ever seen this document in its entirety? Has
24 Mr. Harmon or anyone from the Prosecution shown you this document before?
25 A. I don't remember seeing it at that time, but some parts of this
1 decision look familiar.
2 Q. I think that Mr. Harmon would not object to my statement that the
3 Personnel Centres are never mentioned in this document.
4 Now, since are you familiar with the decision on the
5 establishment of the Personnel Centres, and you spoke about that in
6 examination-in-chief, does this fact stated in Article 7, which is that
7 these military personnel shall retain their status in the Yugoslav Army
8 and also enjoy all the rights deriving from that status pursuant to the
9 applicable regulations? Is this portion of the document in correlation
10 with what was going to be later put in, in the order of the Personnel
11 Centre and the status in the service?
12 A. This is very difficult to claim explicitly and establish
13 explicitly, but it looks to me that this is the case, because through --
14 in paragraph 3 of Article 7, which stipulates the way in which the
15 status -- service status of these personnel is going to be determined by
16 a VJ officer in charge.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: Can we scroll. Please let's see paragraph 3 of
18 paragraph 7.
19 Thank you.
20 What happened now?
21 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, that's paragraph above
22 Article 8, and this is the one that Mr. Starcevic commented upon.
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: No.
24 [Defence counsel confer]
25 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] You can see it above it. This is the
1 first paragraph in the English version on this page, and this was what
2 Mr. Starcevic commented on.
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
4 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
5 Q. From your personal experience while you worked in the Ministry of
6 Defence and the Yugoslav Army, although the Ministry of Defence was
7 independent of the army, but you were part of that system, were you aware
8 that in 1992 and 1993 active-duty officers of the SVK and RSK were
9 receiving salaries from the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia?
10 A. Yes. I was aware of that in an unofficial fashion, because in my
11 post, I was not involved in these procedures, and I didn't know much
12 about that.
13 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, we don't need this
14 document anymore. Therefore, it can be removed from our screens.
15 Q. In order to wrap up this context, I'm going to address only one
16 more topic with you.
17 Would you agree with me, Mr. Starcevic, that in the close
18 proximity of the FRY where it actually had its border, there was a severe
19 and fierce civil war raging in 1992, all the way through the year in
20 which the Dayton Accords were signed?
21 A. Yes. Unfortunately, that was the case.
22 Q. Would you agree with me that that represented a permanent danger
23 of the war spilling over into the territory of the Federal Republic of
25 A. I may draw some conclusions on that, but I can agree with you
1 that that posed a danger to relations between Yugoslavia and the war-torn
3 And if I may add this, I think that up until official recognition
4 of the new states, i.e., Croatia, Slovenia, and later Bosnia-Herzegovina
5 that was, in essence, a civil war in the former Yugoslavia?
6 Q. You're referring to the recognition by the international
8 A. Precisely that.
9 Q. Another question: Would you agree with me that this war that
10 surrounded the FRY could have an effect to a potential hot beds of
11 conflict? And I'm referring to Sandzak and Kosovo and that it had direct
12 bearing on the security situation within the FRY itself?
13 A. Yes. I have some, more or less, direct knowledge due to the
14 duties that I continued to be involved in after leaving the army. I,
15 myself, could see direct consequences, second-hand experience of the
16 consequences of conflict in certain areas of the Federal Republic of
18 Q. Are you referring to these regions that I mentioned Sandzak and
19 Kosovo? Is that the case?
20 A. Yes, mainly those areas and also some other areas of multi-ethnic
21 composition of the population.
22 Q. I suppose that this problem arose because these multi-ethnic
23 communities had some links with the ethnic communities in the war-torn
24 areas outside of Yugoslavia.
25 A. Yes, that is precisely the case.
1 Q. And you would agree with me in view of what we mentioned at the
2 begin, when we spoke about social changes that accompanied the
3 disintegration of the country, that all of this led to a need to create
4 stability in the country by taking political decision and thereby
5 pre-empt or prevent the outbreak of war in the territory of the FRY?
6 A. Yes. Although I don't consider myself to be an expert in
7 politics, I believe that the need for that was quite obvious.
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: May I just interrupt.
9 Mr. Starcevic at page 41 line 11, when you say "outside of
10 Yugoslavia," which country are you referring to?
11 Sorry, it's not you. It's Mr. Lukic. It's part of the question,
12 I'm sorry.
13 What do you mean by Yugoslavia there, sir?
14 I'm asking you. Are you asking -- that's the translation of your
16 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] The context of my question was after
17 the formation of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. Perhaps I wasn't
18 precise, but I was thinking of Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. And I
19 believe that Mr. Starcevic understood my question in that way. That is,
20 from the May of 1992 onward.
21 JUDGE MOLOTO: You meant the FRY. Thank you, that's what I
22 wanted to know.
23 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
24 Q. The context of my question, of course, I did mention the period
25 of 1991, but, first of all, what I was interested because of what we're
1 going to talk about that context when the break apart -- when the country
2 broke apart, when the FRY was formed, and then when the army fell apart.
3 Mr. Starcevic, now we're going to move to a totally different
4 topic. Now we're going to talk about command and control. These are
5 categories that are mentioned in the law, one of the draftees of which is
6 you, yourself, so I assume that you are going to be able to provide us
7 with both your professional and knowledge that stems from your
9 Would you agree with me that the terms "command and control," in
10 essence, are terms that refer to the functioning of every army from every
11 single unit, up to the term "of the army."
12 A. Of course, I agree.
13 Q. And do you agree with me, that these principles or more or less
14 similar in all the armies of the world?
15 A. I would, first of all, say similar. I wouldn't say that they
16 were identical. Yes.
17 Q. All right. I think that I perhaps used a superfluous word.
18 Would you agree with me that the principles of command and
19 control in the JNA and the VJ were the terms of unity of command and
20 singleness of command?
21 A. Yes, I agree.
22 Q. The principle of singleness of command means that there is just
23 one person in command, issuing assignments and to whom one is responsible
24 for the implementation of the issued assignment.
25 A. Yes, generally speaking, but I would be a bit more precise.
1 Singleness of command means that each member of the army can have just
2 one immediately superior officer. That does not mean that he does not
3 have some other superiors who is actually the superior to his immediate
4 superior. But the immediate superior to anyone can only be one single
6 Q. And this second superior person can be only part of the chain of
7 command; is that correct?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Subordination means practically what I have already said, that
10 the superior makes decisions, and they refer to the immediately
11 subordinated person.
12 A. Yes. Subordination, in essence, implies the duty of the
13 subordinated person to execute orders issued by the superior commander,
14 and the superior commander's right to issue those orders.
15 Q. And that is something that is frequently then referred to as the
16 chain of command?
17 A. Yes, that is correct.
18 Q. Very well. I think now that we're going to talk about the Law of
19 the Army, your baby, let's say.
20 We're now going to deal with Article -- with Exhibit P197. We're
21 going to look at Article 3.
22 And while we're waiting for it -- well, the Trial Chamber is
23 already familiar with this Article. It states command on the army is
25 forces and means, unity of command, and the duty to execute decisions,
1 commands, and orders of the superior commander; is that correct?
2 A. Yes, that is the text.
3 Q. And now what follows is -- what you also commented with
4 Mr. Harmon, is Article 4 and then Article 5, which practically defined
5 this chain of command, which starts with the president of the Republic;
6 is that correct?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. And then Article 10 - this is on page 3 and the same page on the
9 B/C/S; page 3 in the English - I'm sorry. Page 3 in English and page 2
10 in the B/C/S.
11 I'm now going to ask you to comment on paragraph -- or item 2 of
12 Article 10.
13 This is what we were talking about already, that the superior
14 commander is the person who performs or executes the command over a
15 military unit.
16 A. Yes, that is correct. The person who has been assigned to
17 command a specific unit by a specific document.
18 Q. The Law on the Army specifies just the Supreme Commander as the
19 Supreme Commander in chief, but everything else then is derived from
20 that, pursuant to the law in separate documents; is that correct?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Now we're going to look at another law. That this is the Law on
23 the Army of Republika Srpska.
24 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] And this is Exhibit 191, B/C/S page
25 1; and P191, B/C/S 1 and English page 1.
1 Q. Article 4, I don't need to read it. You can just read it for
3 Would you agree with me that these are practically identical
4 definitions of the terms from the Law on the Army of Republika Srpska,
5 adopted in -- on the 1st of June, 1992, as it says. So it's identical to
6 the Law on the Army of Yugoslavia that we already looked at?
7 A. Yes, yes, these are practically identical formulations.
8 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can we now look at Article 173 of
9 this law. On B/C/S, this is page 17; and in the English, it's on page
11 Q. Article 173:
12 "Command in the army shall be founded on principles of unified
13 command regarding the use of forces and means, single authority,
14 obligations to enforce decisions, command and orders issued by superior
16 Let me say again that is practically the same formulation as in
17 the law that we already looked at, the Law of the Army of Yugoslavia; is
18 that correct?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And now let's look at the next article.
21 I'm not going to read the entire article, but just the first
22 paragraph, where it says that:
23 "The president of the Republic shall be the commander in chief of
24 the army. The president of the Republic shall ... "
25 And then it notes all his duties.
1 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can we scroll down a little bit and
2 look at number 14, last paragraph, that is thus the next page in English.
3 Q. Underneath the number 14 -- I'm practically reading the last
4 practically paragraph under number 14 where it says:
5 "The president of the republic can delegate certain command
6 duties to the commander of the Main Staff who shall be responsible to the
7 president of the Republic for the said duties."
8 And then the next paragraph, very briefly, just the first part:
9 "The commander of the Main Staff implements the command of the
10 army pursuant to the powers vested in him by the president of the
11 Republic, pursuant to the law ..."
12 So we already have new, different categories in some terms, in
13 relation to the Law on the Army of Yugoslavia. In the Law on the Army of
14 Republika Srpska, of the Supreme Commander of - that's right - the army,
15 is the president of Republika Srpska although this is not stated here.
16 But that is clearly something that arises from the constitution and also
17 the institute of the Main Staff, and the commander of the Main Staff is
18 referred to; and would you agree with me that this does not exist in the
19 Army of the Republic of Yugoslavia as a category; is that correct?
20 A. No. The Law on Army does not contain the term "the Main Staff,"
21 but it has the term "the General Staff."
22 Q. These Articles that we looked at from the Law of the Army of
23 Republika Srpska, would you agree with me that in this law, the army of
24 Republika Srpska is sets up as a separate army with a separate chain of
25 command, going from the Supreme Commander down, and the Supreme Commander
1 is the president of Republika Srpska?
2 A. Yes, that is the only possible legal interpretation.
3 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can we now look at, very briefly, the
4 Law on the Army of the Republic of Serbian Krajina, and that is 65 ter
5 637 -- I think we already admitted this page before. I'm only interested
6 in the first page -- or, rather, it's B/C/S, page 11; and English, page 4
7 of this document.
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: Are you saying it is already admitted?
9 [Defence counsel confer]
10 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I have just been informed that only
11 Article 161 of this law has been admitted and not this one. We only
12 admitted only that particular article from this law and not the entire
13 law as opposed to the previous two laws that we looked at.
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: And what is the number 637 denote? Is that an
15 exhibit number?
16 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] No, no, 6367 is the 65 ter document.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: 6367.
18 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] And D85 was actually just one article
19 of this document.
20 THE INTERPRETER: Could the counsel please slow down for the
21 purposes of interpretation.
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: You are being asked to slow down for purposes of
24 And what article do you want us to look at now on this page?
25 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Article 3.
1 Q. Mr. Starcevic, we're not going to read. I'm only going to ask
2 you whether this Article, in its contents, similar to, let me put it that
3 way, this first paragraph, is similar to the principles we saw in the Law
4 on the Army of Yugoslavia and the Law on the Army of Republika Srpska.
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. The Supreme Defence Council is mentioned here which is a category
7 similar to the name referred to in our law. When I say "our law," I mean
8 our Law on the Army of Yugoslavia. But just for a minute, let's look at
9 Article 10.
10 This is it on B/C/S, page 12; and English, page 1D040324, because
11 it was not translated before, so we translated it now.
12 Article 10 ...
13 I'm going to put the same question to you. The contents of
14 Article 10 are, well let me not say identical, but very similar to those
15 solutions referred to in the Law of the Army of Yugoslavia and the Law on
16 the Army of Republika Srpska?
17 A. That is correct.
18 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can we please tender this for
19 admission. This one page -- or, actually, practically these two pages,
21 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Lukic, I'm advised that Article 3 is part of
23 Exhibit D85. Then we'll just add Article 10 to D85.
24 Mr. Harmon.
25 MR. HARMON: Yes, are we limiting the admission just to
1 Article 10? Mr. Lukic sought the admission of the page, and he only
2 referred to Article 10, so my request would be that the Article referred
3 to only be admitted and not the whole page.
4 JUDGE MOLOTO: The whole page where Article 10 appears, and the
5 page where Article 3 appears will be admitted.
6 Thank you so much.
7 And can they be given an exhibit number -- oh, well, D85, eh?
8 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I would like to make one more
9 comparison between these three laws, but we have to go back.
10 First of all, Mr. Starcevic, can you tell me - this is a term
11 that I use, but I don't know if it is a professional term - what is
12 protected or protective facility of the army?
13 A. If you analyse that in the legal sense then, a protective
14 facility is something that the army has been entrusted to protect,
15 pursuant to the constitution and regulations arising from the
16 constitution, which means the territorial integrity, the constitution
17 order from violent changes, and other assets or values as laid down in
18 the constitution.
19 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I would like to look at P197 again on
20 the screen, page 1, both in the B/C/S and in the English.
21 Q. Is that what is written here in Article 1? Is that a protective
22 facility or object of the Yugoslav Army of Yugoslavia?
23 A. In essence, yes, although the legal terminology is a little bit
24 unusual "zasticeni objekat voske," the protective facility or object of
25 the army, and this is the Law on the Army. Based on that, the army is
1 duty-bound to guard these matters.
2 Q. The Army of Yugoslavia defends, and then it says the order of the
3 Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, the territory, the independence, and the
4 sovereignty of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia; is that correct?
5 A. Yes, that is correct.
6 Q. Now can we please look at Exhibit P191, page, B/C/S, 1; and
7 English, 1.
8 Unlike the Yugoslav Army, the army the Serbian Republic of Bosnia
9 and Herzegovina, as it was called at the time when this law was adopted,
10 defends the sovereignty, territory independence, and the constitutional
11 order of the Serbian Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina; is that right?
12 A. Yes, that's right.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Harmon.
14 MR. HARMON: Your Honour, just to clarify the record, if I can go
15 back to an answer and a question -- the question that was asked by
16 Mr. Lukic. I'm referring to page 50. The reference he refers to -- it's
17 line 6:
18 "Is that what is written here in Article 1? Is that a protected
19 facility or an object of the Yugoslav Army of Yugoslavia?"
20 I'm looking at my translation of Article 1, and I don't see the
21 term "protected facility."
22 So I have a question: I would request that Mr. Lukic clarify
23 either the question or be more precise, because I don't see --
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: Indeed. That's been running through my mind too
25 and wondering -- I was looking for that protected facility, and I
1 couldn't see it anywhere.
2 And I'm not even quite sure that I understand the use of that
3 phrase, "protective facility." For me, the way it is being interpreted,
4 I would have said protected facility or, I don't know. But just give us
5 the word protected facility.
6 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Perhaps I was using a term that
7 should have better be translated as an object of protection.
8 This is how I'm using this term, and I'm using it, to tell you
9 the truth, although I know that it's not stipulated as such in the law.
10 But, logically speaking, I'm using it because I am having in mind things
11 that are being protected, and I would really like to have a definition
12 that is precisely set in the law.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes, but the only thing is the way you have, sort
14 of, used it. I got the impression that if we look at the exhibit on the
15 screen, we will see words to that effect, and I just didn't see words to
16 that effect. But -- and I think the phrase object of protection, or
17 whatever you said a little earlier, describes it better than protective
18 facility. For me, protected facility means something that protects, not
19 something that is protected.
20 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] That's right. Yes, that's correct.
21 That is why I had this problem and I caused problem for the interpreters
22 because I was using it as such, and we shall strive to be more precise in
23 the future.
24 Q. So the Army of Republika Srpska defends or protects the
25 territory, independence, and the constitutional order of the Serbian
1 Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina. This is the fundamental difference that
2 exists between these two laws that refer to different armies that have
3 jurisdictions in two different states and territories.
4 A. Yes, that is correct.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: What is that fundamental difference? I thought
6 all these armies defends the territory, the sovereignty, and the
7 independence of their areas ...
8 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] The territory.
9 JUDGE MOLOTO: For the difference, you mean the territory.
10 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] This may seem as to oversimplifies,
11 but I wanted to demonstrate that the Army of the Serbian Republic of
12 Bosnia-Herzegovina defended another territory, not the one that was
13 defended by the VJ.
14 Q. Now let's look at Article 1.
15 THE INTERPRETER: Could the counsel please repeat his last
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: Counsel, you are requested to repeat your last
19 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Yes. It was misinterpreted. I
20 wanted to demonstrate through these question that the armies mentioned in
21 these laws protect the respective territories of their states.
22 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes, but we know that. Thank you.
23 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
24 Q. Now, very briefly, Article 1 of the Law on the Army of Serbian of
25 Krajina stipulates that this army protects the territory of the Serbian
1 Republic of Krajina; is that correct?
2 A. I suppose so, but I don't see this article.
3 Q. This is D85. I'm going to read it out to you in order to save
5 Article 1 of the Law on the SVK reads:
6 "The Army of the Serbian Republic of Krajina, hereinafter army is
7 the armed force ... that defends sovereignty, territory, and independence
8 of the Republic of Serbian Krajina."
9 Is that correct?
10 A. Yes, that's correct.
11 Q. Now, we have seen certain stipulations enshrined in three
12 different laws relating to command and control, the chain of command, and
13 the jurisdictions, i.e., the territories over which these armies have.
14 Can we, therefore, conclude, based on these laws, that we are
15 dealing with three completely separate armies?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. If an officer is a member of a certain army, under the law, he is
18 in the service of that particular army.
19 A. That's correct.
20 Q. Let us draw another parallel that I see as important, and that
21 has to do with transient provision.
22 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can we have P191; B/C/S page 38, and
23 English page 56. That's article -- I'm sorry. Yes, 191 is fine. The
24 Law on the Army of Republika Srpska, Article 377, which reads:
25 "Active duty officers, junior officers, and army personnel of the
1 Yugoslav People's Army, citizens of the Serbian Republic of Bosnia and
2 Herzegovina, as well as those citizens of other states of the former
3 Social Federative Republic of Yugoslavia, to wish to serve in the Army of
4 the Serbian Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and there is need for
5 their engagement."
6 Can we please look at the next page in English for the Judges to
7 be able to follow what I'm reading.
8 If we can scroll up the version in B/C/S, was adopted on the 1st
9 of July -- 1st of June, 1992. In Article 308 it says that it came into
10 force on the date of its publication.
11 Now, can you comment on this article.
12 A. I don't know in what way you would like me to comment on it.
13 This is, quite simply said, that all professional servicemen from the
14 former JNA, on the date of this of this law coming into force, shall be
15 reassigned to professional servicemen of the Army of Republika Srpska --
16 Q. You don't need to read it.
17 A. -- provided they are either the citizens or -- they wish to serve
18 in the Army of Republika Srpska and, of course, if there is an need for
19 them to be engaged in the Army of Republika Srpska.
20 Q. At that particular time, did they become members of the Army of
21 Republika Srpska?
22 A. Yes. By the very act of being reassigned, they became members of
23 the Army of Republika Srpska.
24 Q. Now, coming to the Law on Army of the Republic of Serbian
25 Krajina. That's P ...
1 [Defence counsel confer]
2 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Actually, 6367, 65 ter, 43 page in
3 English, 43 in B/C/S, actually; and it's document 1D04-024, Article 320
4 of the law --
5 I'm going repeat. It's 1D04-0324 in English, and the B/C/S we
6 can already see on the screen.
7 Q. This law was adopted, if we look at the top, on the
8 22nd April 1993.
9 Without reading the Article, on the date of the adoption of this
10 law, had the former members of the JNA become members of the Army of the
11 Serbian Republic of Krajina?
12 A. Yes.
13 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I move for this document to be
14 admitted into evidence, only this page with Article 320 of the Law on the
15 Army of the Serbian Republic of Krajina.
16 [Trial Chamber and registrar confer]
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: It's on the same page as Article 10, sir, which is
18 already admitted.
19 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Yes. But 320, in B/C/S, which
20 carries the number 6367, that's page 65. This page wasn't admitted.
21 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. It's admitted --
22 Sorry, Mr. Harmon you were going to say something.
23 MR. HARMON: No objection.
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: It is admitted. May it please be given an exhibit
1 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honour, Article 320 will be added to already
2 existing D85.
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
4 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation].
5 Q. And, finally, let us look at article -- actually, Exhibit 197,
6 P197, that's the Law on the Yugoslav Army; Article 346, page 90 in
7 English and page 31 in the B/C/S. Article 346.
8 As far as I remember last time when you testified, we had some
9 debate about the date of this law coming into effect. But without going
10 into dates, there was a preliminary version and the official version of
11 the 27th May 1994. This Article, 346, indicates that before the date of
12 this law coming -- that on the day of this law becoming effective, the
13 former members of the JNA become members of the army of --
14 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreters kindly ask the counsel to slow
15 down. We cannot catch everything that he is saying.
16 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Lukic, you are being requested to kindly slow
18 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. A couple of questions relating to the topic discussed with you
20 with Mr. Harmon and on the rules and regulations that you discuss but
21 from the point of view of the Defence.
22 [Defence counsel confer]
23 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
24 Q. Due to my mistake and due to the speed, your answer was not
25 recorded, Mr. Starcevic. Can you repeat, do you agree with me that on
1 the basis of what is stated in Article 346, of the Law on Yugoslav Army,
2 on the day of its coming into effect the former members of the Yugoslav
3 People's Army became members of the Yugoslav Army?
4 A. Yes.
5 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can we now look at exhibit - just
6 bear with me for a moment - the Law on Defence; I think that's
7 Exhibit P1183, page 4 in the B/C/S, and page 5 in the English version.
8 Perhaps we can look at the following page in English first. It
9 begins on this page, talking about 41 on the Supreme Defence Council.
10 Article 41. And it states in paragraph 1 that the Supreme Defence
11 Council adopts the plan for the defence of the country.
12 Q. Can you please tell us what the defence -- what the plan for the
13 defence of the country is.
14 A. That is a document laying out measures and procedures that should
15 be carried out by all subjects of the National Defence, and pursuant to
16 which they should prepare for the eventual defence of the country.
17 I would like to emphasise this, "all subjects," because the Army
18 of Yugoslavia is just one of the subjects of defence, and there is an
19 crucial difference in this law compared to the Law on the Army, because
20 this law regulates the rights, duties, and the relationships among all
21 the subjects. It regulate a field of activity, while the Law on the Army
22 regulates the institution of the army.
23 Q. I don't simply want now to just read this article because it
24 speaks for itself.
25 But can you please give you a comment of Article 4 [as
1 interpreted], which the VSO establishes the needs in weaponry to carry
2 out the defence?
3 A. I cannot see it to be able to read it.
4 Q. No, no, you have it in front of you, so it -- of you, so it would
5 be paragraph 1 of Article 4 [as interpreted].
6 A. Well, it's a very simply provision, stating that the Supreme
7 Defence Council adopts a decision of what is required in order to defend
8 the country, in terms of equipment and weaponry. It has the final
9 decision on what is necessary to obtain, in terms of equipment and
10 weaponry, in order to implement the plan that it has adopted.
11 Q. Let's go to the previous article, where it says that the
12 president of the republic as the commander -- as the Supreme Commander of
13 the Army of Yugoslavia practically -- if he realizes the decisions of the
14 Supreme Defence Council through his orders, which he passes down or
15 issues to his subordinates.
16 A. Yes. In essence, that's how it is because this law does not
17 recognise the institution of the Supreme Commander, the president of the
18 Republic, thus, implements the decisions of the Supreme Defence Council.
19 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can we now, a little lower, to the
20 federal government.
21 This is it Article 52 [as interpreted]. We see -- this is
22 Article 42, the authorities of the federal government, so what I'm
23 interested in now is paragraphs 5 and 6. It refers also -- or they also
24 refer to the national defence plan.
25 Q. Is the federal government the body that -- well, let me ask it
1 like this: Is the federal government the one that holds the property
2 rights of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia?
3 A. Yes. In principle, yes.
4 [Defence counsel confer]
5 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] When I said "titula," and perhaps I
6 am making a problem for the interpreters with my words, the person who
7 under the law is authorised to dispose with the property of the Republic
8 of Yugoslavia is the government of the Republic of Yugoslavia. They are
9 the title holder and have the right to transfer those rights to somebody
10 else. They are the ones who are holding the title and entrusted with the
11 assets, property of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia; is that correct?
12 A. Yes, that is correct.
13 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreters note that counsel is dealing
14 with very complex things, and he is speaking very fast and not giving us
15 enough time to process what is he saying.
16 JUDGE MOLOTO: Mr. Lukic, the interpreters are really complaining
17 now. They say you are very fast and dealing with very complicated
19 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I apologise, really, to the
20 interpreters. I'm going to be slower and more precise.
21 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you, sir.
22 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] For a moment, can we put -- just one
24 Q. The military industry is in whose jurisdiction; do you know that?
25 Or let me say the special purpose industry for the manufacture of weapons
1 and military equipment.
2 A. In accordance to what we were saying, it is under the
3 jurisdiction of the federal government and within the federal government,
4 if I remember correctly, it was under the authority of the Ministry of
6 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I would like us to put on the screen
7 now document 65 ter 7905. This is the Law on Property. I need page --
8 B/C/S, 6 and page 13 in English; Article 39.
9 Q. This article states:
10 "Movable items for special purposes are weapons, military
11 equipment, and other movable items from Article 35, and Article 38 of
12 this law, used by the federal ministry in charge of defence and the
13 Yugoslav Army, as well as by the federal ministry in charge of internal
14 affairs, for the defence and security purposes."
15 And then the next Article:
16 "The federal minister in charge of" --
17 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter's note: We don't have this
18 article on the screen.
19 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] This is Article 39. We lost it for a
20 moment. Well, the previous page in the B/C/S is here, but the English we
21 have lost.
22 Article 39, can we please have both versions on the screen. This
23 is correct.
24 Q. "The federal minister in charge of defence and/or federal
25 minister in charge of internal affairs manage the procurement and use of
1 movable items for special purposes from paragraph 1 of this article,
2 under conditions stipulated by this law."
3 This is what, let me put it this way, you already answered to me
4 in advance, but it means that movable items which are defined in the
5 previous -- actually in this article, paragraph 1, used by the Army of
6 Yugoslavia about the procurement and disposal of these matters, meaning
7 equipment and weapons, is something that the decision about -- is made by
8 the federal minister of defence; is this correct?
9 A. Yes, that is correct.
10 Q. I would like us to tender this page of this law into evidence.
11 This is the Law on Property, which is on the 65 ter list of the
12 Prosecution. And we would like to tender this particular page into
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes, Mr. Harmon.
15 MR. HARMON: No objection.
16 JUDGE MOLOTO: The document is admitted into evidence. May it
17 please be given an exhibit number.
18 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, Article 39 of 65 ter 07905 will be
19 Exhibit D114.
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you so much.
21 Is that a convenient moment?
22 We will take a break and come back at half past 12.00.
23 Court adjourned.
24 --- Recess taken at 12.02 p.m.
25 --- On resuming at 12.31 p.m.
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes, Mr. Lukic.
2 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Before I continue, just a slight
3 intervention to the transcript, which evidently was a result of my speed.
4 It's page 58, line 13, I referred to Article 41 of the Law on Defence,
5 and what is written is Article 4. It should state Article 41.
6 JUDGE MOLOTO: Page 58, line?
7 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] 13.
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: It should be Article ...
9 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] 41.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. Thank you.
11 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can we please now put back on the
12 screen, P1183, the Law on Defence, of the FRY. B/C/S page 4 and English
13 page 6.
14 We're going to put a couple of questions only about what the
15 Defence -- the Law on Defence says about the defence ministry, 43.
16 Q. This Article deals with the authority of the federal Ministry of
17 Defence in the defence system. What I'm interested in is paragraph 5,
18 where it says that the federal defence ministry is authorised for
19 equipping and arming to meet the requirements of the national defence.
20 You worked at the defence ministry. Were there any separate
21 parts of the defence ministry that were charged with the activities
22 stipulated in this provision?
23 A. Yes. There was a sector in the defence ministry to deal with
24 these tasks.
25 Q. And also, paragraph 10 of Article 1, it says that the federal
1 defence ministry is organized for organising and preparing facilities for
2 the production of weapons and military equipment and securing priority
3 production for the needs of the Army of Yugoslavia.
4 Is what is stated in this article something that indicates that
5 there was special parts of the defence ministry that were in charge of
6 these activities?
7 A. Yes. It was the same sector that I referred to before.
8 Q. Can you please comment on Article 44?
9 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] It's the same page in the B/C/S, and
10 in the English version, it's ...
11 Q. This is a different duty of the federal Ministry of Defence, and
12 it's independent of what is stated in Article 43. I'm not going to read
13 the whole article, but this is what I'm interested in:
14 What do these inspection tasks consist of in terms of
15 implementing decisions enacted by the president of the Republic of the
16 Supreme Defence Council and the federal government --
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: Slow down, slow down, slow down, slow down.
18 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Paragraph 2 of this article provides
19 for the federal Ministry of Defence to perform inspections or checks of
20 the implementation of the federal law -- the federal regulation, plans,
21 and measures of the president of the Republic, the Supreme Defence
22 Council and the federal government.
23 Can you please tell us who did this within the Ministry of
25 A. If I remember correctly, there was a separate inspection and the
1 gist of their activities, was, among other things, to oversee and monitor
2 the implementation of decisions and documents adopted by the president of
3 the Republic, the Supreme Defence Council, the federal government that
4 referred to the defence of the country.
5 Q. This inspection was part of the Ministry of Defence; is that
7 A. Yes, if I remember correctly.
8 Q. Mr. Harmon asked you -- and now we're going to move to questions
9 about the Personnel Centres. Before that, you said that you were not
10 participating in any activities that had to do with the decisions to set
11 up the Personnel Centres; is that correct?
12 I assume that you were aware that the VSO meetings regularly were
13 attended by the defence minister of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
14 and the chief of the General Staff. They were not members but they did
15 attend these sessions; is that correct?
16 A. Yes, as far as I know, yes, they did attend.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: What is the VSO? Is that the SDC?
18 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Yes, yes.
19 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
20 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] That is correct, VSO, [B/C/S spoken],
21 Supreme Defence Council, we use the abbreviation.
22 Q. Do you recall if you personally were present at the collegiums of
23 the defence minister in line with your post -- you were just informed
24 about the proceeds of those meetings?
25 A. I seldom attended, only when there was a legal issue on the
1 agenda which was within the jurisdiction of the administration which I
2 headed; and, of course, from the time when I became the head thereof, it
3 was a customary practice for my superior, the chief of the sector within
4 which the legal administration was, to attend. And, of course, he
5 informed me about some of the tasks -- of the tasks and duties that were
6 within the purview of my administration, but nothing beyond that.
7 Q. Do you know if the defence minister, within his scope of rights
8 and responsibilities, informed his staff, his subordinate staff in the,
9 ministry, about the information about that were passed on at the SDC
11 A. I can only surmise that he did. He would sometimes call me to
12 come either alone or with my superior, my supervisor, but that mainly had
13 to do with legislature that was being affected by my administration or if
14 it had to do with some other legal issues.
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: [Previous translation continues] ... please.
16 Mr. Starcevic, that answer, starting at paragraph 10, I beg your
17 pardon. Line 10, page 65, you say that you seldom attended:
18 "Only when there was a legal issue on the agenda which was within
19 the jurisdiction of that administration which I headed; and, of course,
20 from the time when I became the head thereof. It was a customary
21 practice for me, superior, the chief of the sector within which the legal
22 administration was to attend. And, of course, he informed me ..."
23 I'm a little confused. I thought he is you, because you are now
24 the chief of the legal administration.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. This requires some
2 I'm not sure I didn't follow the translation, and I didn't grasp
3 what the problem was.
4 There was a sector within the Ministry of Defence which was
5 called, if I remember correctly, the sector for legal and personnel
6 affairs. The chief, or the sector -- sector was there, and the sector
7 had two administrations. My administration, which was the legal
8 administration, and the other one which was the administration for
9 personnel issue, let's say.
10 Therefore, he was not part of any -- of either of these two
11 administrations. The administration was part of his sector. What I
12 wanted to say was that I think that the head of this sector regularly
13 attended the collegium meetings because he was a member of the collegium.
14 By virtue of my position, I was not a member of the collegium, but he did
15 sometimes invite me, either at his own initiate or at the request of the
16 minister to come and attend a meeting whenever legal issues were to be
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: So your position was head of legal issues?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's right.
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: And he was head of legal issues and personnel,
21 legal and personnel.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Precisely so.
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: You were under him [Microphone not activated]
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's right.
25 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. Mr. Starcevic, did you ever attend a meeting of the Supreme
2 Defence Council, because, as we know, ministers were sometimes in the
3 habit of bring some of their aides or associates with them.
4 So did you ever attend a SDC meeting?
5 A. Yes, only once, and quite intentionally and not by accident.
6 That took place when the final draft was being prepared of the Law on the
7 Army. It was being debated at the meeting of the Supreme Defence Council
8 as well. And I went there in order to assist them to understand the
9 provisions of the law from the legal point of view.
10 Q. Mm-hmm.
11 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can we now look at P229, which is the
12 constitution of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, page 46 in the B/C/S,
13 and 44 in the English.
14 Q. If you could just briefly comment or as an introduction of what
15 we're going to deal with, is article --
16 THE INTERPRETER: Can the counsel please repeat the number of the
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: Can you please repeat the number of the article.
19 The interpreters didn't hear you.
20 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] It's Article 135, which reads ...
21 Q. Mr. Starcevic, the command of the army under the constitution is
22 within the scope of responsibilities of the president of the Republic; is
23 that correct?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. With respect to him, what was the role of the Supreme Defence
1 Council? Are they in command or do they take political decisions that
2 he, as the commander-in-chief, should implement?
3 A. If you allow me to make an observation, the way I read
4 Article 135 is in rather different language. I think that you have
5 quoted the formulation that I am familiar with.
6 However, in paragraph 1, there is something that I'm not sure
7 about but is quite different from that; namely, in Article 135, which I
8 see in front of me, I read that in wartime and piece-time, the Army of
9 Yugoslavia shall be under the command of the president of the Republic,
10 pursuant to decisions of the Supreme Defence Council.
11 I also remember text which says, in accordance with the
12 decision -- decision taken by the Supreme Defence Council, I think that
13 this difference is pretty serious, because, according to this language
14 here, this would imply that the president of the Republic can exercise
15 command only if he receives a prior decision from the Supreme Defence
16 Council; whereas, in the text that I still remember, and I don't know if
17 you have it with you, it reads that this is to be done in accordance with
18 the decisions which gives him more freedom, which means that he does not
19 necessarily have to wait for a decision by the Supreme Defence Council
20 and doesn't seek one for each act of command, but, rather, conducts
21 command in accordance with the already existing decisions.
22 That is what I wanted to point out, and I'm really interested to
23 know which of the texts is the genuine one.
24 Q. In order to avoid any misunderstanding, and I think that similar
25 problem occurred in another case before this Tribunal relating to
1 different interpretations of one and the same article. I think that was
2 in the Milutinovic case.
3 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] If we can just put on the ELMO the
4 text that you have just quoted for us.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: Before we do that, can I just add to the
6 confusion. That same Article, 135, the second paragraph says the Supreme
7 Defence Council shall be made up of the president of the Republic and the
8 presidents of the member republics.
9 The first Republic, with a capital letter, are we to understand
10 that is the president of the Federation?
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, that means the president of
12 the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: You wish they had put the federal republic because
14 when you just said republic and republics, it just doesn't make good
15 sense to somebody who doesn't know the structure of the country.
16 Okay. Thank you.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is a very usual expression in
18 our language because the second part of the sentence is in plural.
19 Therefore, these republics are then written with a lower case.
20 JUDGE MOLOTO: I can see the -- that difference, but, still ...
21 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can we have on the ELMO what we have
22 just heard. Actually, what I read.
23 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
24 JUDGE MOLOTO: I'm sorry. We've got it.
25 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation].
1 Q. So, Mr. Starcevic, Article 135, I'm going to read it once
2 again --
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: Just sorry to interrupt you -- oh, beg your
4 pardon. Now we are seeing pictures. Okay. Thank you.
5 You may proceed.
6 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. Can you please scroll down a bit so that we can see what is
8 written on top of this document.
9 [In English] Down, down.
10 [Interpretation] Thank you.
11 Mr. Starcevic, can you tell us where does this document come
13 A. This document was published in the official military gazette.
14 Q. As far as I remember, you were an editor of the military official
15 gazette for a period of time. Is that an official publication that
16 promulgates such kind of documents to the public?
17 A. Not in this case. The only official document that contains the
18 constitution of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia is the Official
19 Gazette of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, whereas the official
20 military gazette is an official documents that contains enactments passed
21 by the Ministry of Defence or in some instances the General Staff and
22 other bodies. However, the standard practice was that the military
23 gazette republished some of the enactments, including the constitution.
24 The same form as it was published in the federal -- in the gazette of the
25 Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
1 Q. Now, can we look at Article 135 and can you please read out aloud
2 slowly the first paragraph of this article.
3 A. In wartime and peacetime, the Yugoslav Army shall be under the
4 command of the President of the Republic, in accordance with the
5 decisions of the Supreme Defence Council.
6 Q. [No interpretation]
7 A. [No interpretation]
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: I heard no interpretation.
9 THE INTERPRETER: Apologies. Microphone was switched off.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you. Could we get the interpretation then?
11 THE INTERPRETER: In --
12 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. I'm going to repeat the answer -- the question.
14 What you have just read is in accordance and consistent with what
15 you remember was an official interpretation of paragraph 1 of Article 135
16 of what they call FRY constitution?
17 A. I remember this to be an official text.
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
19 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. I'm not going to go into more details about what you mentioned
21 about the distinction between what we read before and what we see on the
22 screen now. But would you agree with me that the Supreme Defence Council
23 was a political body that took decisions on the basis of which the
24 president of the Republic, as the commander-in-chief of the
25 Yugoslav Army, takes his own decisions?
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: Yes, Mr. Harmon.
2 MR. HARMON: Can I just seek clarification of one point. And
3 that is: The text that is on the monitor, Article 135, in English it
4 says pursuant to decisions, I can't read the Cyrillic and I don't know if
5 that Cyrillic text also has pursuant or whether it has in accordance with
6 the decisions of the SDC. So I want to make sure that the Cyrillic text
7 in front of us and as part of an exhibit is correct and then we can --
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: That's actually what Mr. Lukic has been trying to
10 MR. HARMON: Right. But the source of this document, that is
11 P229, is different than the source of the document that Mr. Lukic put on
12 the monitor. As I understand it, the source of the document that
13 Mr. Lukic put on the monitor was from the military gazette. The source
14 of this document comes from a different source.
15 So I just want it make sure --
16 JUDGE MOLOTO: But do remember that there -- what you saw from
17 the military gazette is an English translation. You didn't see the --
18 what you call it? The B/C/S version. And I thought this is the B/C/S
19 version of that which said pursuant to. And somebody who interpreted it
20 made the mistake, interpreted in accordance with to be pursuant to.
21 Now because Mr. Starcevic -- that's what I understand -- that's
22 how I understand the process.
23 MR. HARMON: That's why there is some confusion here. I want to
24 make sure that the B/C/S document that is P229 in the record, in fact,
25 has the correct words that Mr. Starcevic has corrected. We can correct
1 the English. I don't want it to be a situation where the Cyrillic text
2 has pursuant to.
3 JUDGE MOLOTO: No. I heard the interpretation of what
4 Mr. Starcevic to be saying, to be in accordance with.
5 MR. HARMON: No. I agree with that. But he also related that in
6 accordance to a different sourced document which was from the military
7 gazette and not from the source of this document.
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay.
9 Mr. Starcevic, can you come to the rescue?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, it's very difficult. The
11 only rescue from the situation is to ensure that we can see the
12 Official Gazette of the FRY, because that would be the authentic source.
13 But I do believe that the military gazette reprinted this official text,
14 and I don't see the source here.
15 JUDGE MOLOTO: But this is the military gazette, is it? Right.
16 And you have just read it. It says in accordance with. So for me, it
17 looks like the problem just arose when the -- this was translated.
18 Are you with us, Mr. Harmon?
19 MR. HARMON: Yes. My only question is this, and I want just to
20 clarify this: The text in the Cyrillic, in Article 135, the first
21 paragraph does it use the word pursuant or does it use the word in
22 accordance with.
23 JUDGE MOLOTO: So you are not with us. He's just repeated almost
24 a third time. Yes, it does.
25 MR. HARMON: Okay.
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: So the mistake arose when this document was
2 translated into English.
3 MR. HARMON: Yes, I understand.
4 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. Let's hear --
5 [Trial Chamber confers]
6 JUDGE PICARD: [Interpretation] It seems that that version that
7 comes from the military gazette is different from the version that we
8 have in e-court, that was shown previously in Cyrillic. I'm not talking
9 about the English version; I'm just talking about the Cyrillic. We have
10 two different versions in Cyrillic. And according to Mr. Starcevic, the
11 right version is the one that comes from the military gazette.
12 [Trial Chamber confers]
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: Unfortunately -- yeah, I was talking from a person
14 who is ignorant of the other language. Thank you very much, Judge.
15 [Trial Chamber confers]
16 [Prosecution counsel confer]
17 [Defence counsel confer]
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thanks to Judge Picard, yes, indeed, it looks like
19 even the two Cyrillic versions are different.
20 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I wanted to be of assistance. The
21 document that we had as evidence, P229, and which was on e-court, as far
22 I can see, that document is a textbook. In B/C/S, that's a different
23 document. What we were looking at now, as Mr. Starcevic explained, is
24 the official military gazette, and there are significant differences
25 between the Serbian Cyrillic text in the source that was in the e-court,
1 which is P229, and what we have just shown on the ELMO. I'm going to
2 propose, and I think that is the way the matter might be resolved in the
3 best way is to actually obtain the FRY Official Gazette, and we can place
4 it on the ELMO and then we can clarify this matter that has to do with
5 the translations.
6 If would you like to look at page 229 in the e-court, you're
7 going to see that it is some sort of publication. It's not an official
8 document of the Official Gazette. If you look at it on the e-court, you
9 will see.
10 JUDGE MOLOTO: Hmm.
11 MR. HARMON: He see, that's the source of my concern, because
12 this may not be the right text that's before Your Honours.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: I think -- yeah. In fact, I think we must get
14 this text out the record.
15 MR. HARMON: I think we -- I agree with Mr. Lukic's suggestion.
16 If all the parties in the court want the right text before us, I have no
17 problem, we could reach a stipulation and substitute the right text for
18 this particular article with a different text.
19 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you so much.
20 You may now proceed, Mr. Lukic, I think.
21 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I don't know if there is no need for
22 this whole document to be tendered into evidence, but only after we
23 obtain the Official Gazette of the FRY or because of the transcript,
24 perhaps you would wish to have this entered into the court case. I have
25 no objection to this document being tendered into evidence.
1 JUDGE MOLOTO: P229 is already in evidence. And that is what we
2 saw on the ELMO, and it is correct. So it can stay there, and you can
3 bring the FRY document just to confirm it.
4 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] All right. Very well. Very well.
5 JUDGE MOLOTO: What seems to be an anathema is this book.
6 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I agree. We're going to try to
7 clarify this outside of the courtroom and to make an adequate evidentiary
8 solution that will be then put forward by both sides.
9 Let us now go back to that question regardless of the discrepancy
10 in the text.
11 Q. The Supreme Defence Council, pursuant to the constitution, is the
12 supreme political body which reaches its decisions, pursuant to which the
13 president of the Republic exercises command over the army. I could
14 define it that way too.
15 A. Yes. In some aspect, yes. The Supreme Defence Council is also a
16 political body. However, in relation to commanding the army, there are
17 no obstacles for the Supreme Defence Council to reach decisions, which
18 would imply command, and then for the president of the Republic to be the
19 one who would implement it.
20 Q. Thank you.
21 JUDGE MOLOTO: Now, Mr. Lukic, we have just spent some time
22 correcting pursuant and replacing with in accordance. Your question now
23 still uses pursuant. Can you -- can you try to stick to the letter of
24 the -- of the law in Yugoslavia? That question from line 22 you said:
25 "In some aspects, yes, the Supreme Defence Council is also a
1 political" -- sorry, it is moving away.
2 "The Supreme Defence Council, pursuant to the constitution
3 which" --
4 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I apologise. I just wanted to deal
5 on what I was focussing with.
6 Q. But, anyway, it had to do with political decisions, and you said
7 yourself what you believe and in which context was something a political
8 decision and in which part. They referred to the part of the decision
9 that refers to the command, if I understood you correctly.
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. All right. Like this now, I would ask now -- or ask to look at
12 P733, please, which Mr. Harmon already called up.
13 This document is a document that you've already looked at; is
14 that correct?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. And in your answers to Mr. Harmon, on page 54 and 48, line 8 of
17 your testimony, you said that this document, this -- this order was
18 adopted on the basis of the Law on the Army, Article 5.
19 Do you recall saying that?
20 A. Yes. Yes, I do.
21 Q. The date of this document is the 15th of November, 1993; is that
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. And it states here that the grounds for this order is the order
25 of the president of the FRY, number 1/2-02-033/93, dated the 10th of
1 November, 1993; is that correct?
2 A. Yes, that is correct.
3 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can we please look at document P731
4 on the screen now.
5 Q. Let us look at page 2 so that we can see who adopted this
7 Mr. Starcevic, who signed this order or command?
8 A. The president of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia,
9 Mr. Zoran Lilic.
10 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can we go back to the previous page
11 now, please.
12 Q. Did Mr. Harmon or anyone else from the Prosecutor's office show
13 you this decision during the proofing in preparation for your testimony?
14 Do you remember that?
15 A. I am not absolutely sure, but I think that I did see it.
16 Q. By the number and date of the decision, this would then be the
17 basis for the order from Mr. Perisic that we saw earlier; is that
19 A. Well, you cannot really see that all that clearly from this
20 document because it does not refer to the number of that order. But it
21 does refer to the decision of the Supreme Defence Council.
22 Q. Perhaps we didn't understand each other.
23 The previous decision, the order on the establishment of
24 Personnel Centres, we read it earlier, from the 15th of November, 1993,
25 then we read that it refers back to the command of the president of the
2 A. This number.
3 Q. All right. Very well.
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Thus, this decision, under this number, is dated the 10th of
6 November, 1993, is the basis for the order on the establishment of the
7 Personnel Centres; is that correct?
8 A. Yes, it is.
9 Q. Now, let us look at the basis for this decision, and we can see
10 that in the preamble. And it states that this decision by the president
11 of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was adopted, pursuant to
12 Article 135 of the constitution, and Article 4 of the Law on the Army of
13 Yugoslavia, pursuant -- in accordance -- in accordance with the decision
14 of the Supreme Defence Council.
15 Is that what it says?
16 A. Yes, that is what it says.
17 JUDGE MOLOTO: I don't see a reference to Article 4.
18 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I see that in the English version we
19 need to scroll it up.
20 I can see that there's a problem in the English translation,
21 Your Honour, and you remarked it well that there is a part that was
22 dropped or it's missing, so I think that we're going to have a problem
23 that we will have to resolve by reading now what it says in the Serbian
24 for the Trial Chamber. And because of the importance of this decision,
25 we're going ask for an official new translation to be done.
1 In the preamble it says, of the B/C/S version:
2 "Pursuant to Article 135 of the constitution of the Federal
3 Republic of Yugoslavia, Official Gazette of the FRY number 1/92 and
4 Article 4 of the Law on the Army of Yugoslavia, Official Gazette of the
5 FRY, (number 67/93) in accordance with the decision of the Supreme
6 Defence Council, I hereby order ..."
7 JUDGE MOLOTO: Hmm. Even that -- reference to that number 1/92
8 is not there in the English. Just something wrong with the translation
10 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I agree with you, Your Honour.
11 If we can continue with this document, and then we can ask for
12 a -- an official translation, then later, to be -- for this new
13 translation replace this existing translation.
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: That's fine. This is supposed to be Exhibit P731.
15 Madam Registrar, can you give it a MFI status, please.
16 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, the status will be changed to
17 marked for identification.
18 JUDGE MOLOTO: Thank you.
19 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Article 4 of the Law on the Yugoslav Army deals with the
21 competence or authority of the president of the Republic in his capacity
22 as supreme commander. And in paragraph 1, it says that the president of
23 the Republic sets the foundations of the internal organisation,
24 developments and equipping of the Yugoslav Army; is that correct?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Would you agree with me that that can be the basis for Article 4
2 of the Army of Yugoslavia to which the preamble of this decision refers?
3 A. Yes, of course. That is the grounds, the granting of authority
4 to the president.
5 Q. Let us look at the first paragraph of item 1. Please read it to
6 yourself, this order.
7 This first paragraph of Article 1 of this decision talks about
8 persons who are subject to this decision to whom this decision applies,
9 and these are two categories: Persons from the former JNA who remained
10 in the territories of Republika Srpska and the Republic of Serbian
11 Krajina, and those who were received or admitted to Military Academies or
12 to the military service of the JNA from those areas; is that correct?
13 A. Yes.
14 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can we now look at page 2 in the
15 B/C/S, and that would be practically page 1, paragraph 2, item 2, in the
16 English version, where it says during that whole time, these persons
17 entirely keep the -- retain all the rights pertaining to their rank and
18 qualification and retain the salary they had in the post they occupied
19 before the current assignment or they shall receive the salary provided
20 for the new post, whichever is more favourable for the individual.
21 These are service-related rights granted to these persons which
22 arise from their status and rank that they had in the JNA or the Army of
23 Yugoslavia before they went there, to these other armies; is that
25 A. Yes, yes. That is the correct interpretation of this provision.
1 Q. Now, the next paragraph, 4, is a little bit longer, but it speaks
2 about the tasks which are entrusted to the chief of the General Staff.
3 I'm not going to read everything, but the last part of this
4 paragraph states that the chief of the General Staff will determine the
5 manner - I'm reading the last line from the bottom - procedure, and
6 period to resolve the situation in the service and the protection of the
7 rights arising from the service of these persons and members of their
9 A. Yes, that is correct. Because it seems to me that, actually,
10 here the -- in the command, a large part of what should be regulated is
11 actually already regulated. In the previous text, in Article 4, it
12 contains a lot of issues that actually represent the way in which these
13 matters have been resolved.
14 Q. The next paragraph speaks about the way in the way the chief of
15 the General Staff can authorise other superior officer in the army.
16 And then the paragraph after that, 5, is something that I am
17 seeking your comment on: For the implementation of all the assignments
18 from this order that fall within the competence of the federal Ministry
19 of Defence ensure full coordination and cooperation between the
20 General Staff of the army -- of the Yugoslav Army and this ministry.
21 The article probably speaks for itself, but in view of what we
22 talked about before, about the authorities of the defence of the --
23 ministry, defence ministry, some of the statutory rights are regulated by
24 the Ministry of Defence, salaries, and so on; is that correct?
25 A. Yes. In essence, this points to the fact that the president of
1 the Republic cannot issue commands to the ministry but does command to
2 the chief of the General Staff to ensure this coordination with the
4 Q. Now that we've seen this decision, I'm going to put the following
5 question to you: Would you agree with me that the decision on the
6 establishment of the Personnel Centres was made by the president of the
7 Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, in accordance with the --
8 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter did not hear the last part of the
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I agree.
11 JUDGE MOLOTO: In accordance with what, Mr. Lukic?
12 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] In accordance with the decision of
13 the Supreme Defence Council; I apologise.
14 JUDGE MOLOTO: Just make sure you finish your questions, okay?
15 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
16 Can we now look at document P734?
17 Q. And now you're going to see your testimony during the
18 examination-in-chief to Mr. Harmon [as interpreted], and this is the
19 instruction on the manner of functioning and the programme of activities
20 of special Personnel Centres.
21 This document was shown to you before in these proceedings and
22 we're just going to comment on a couple of excerpts and specifically that
23 is the preamble of this instruction.
24 In your view, what are the grounds of these instructions dated
25 the 8th of December, 1993? On the basis of which did General Perisic
1 draft this instruction?
2 A. Well, I can quote what is stated here, but --
3 Q. All right. Very well. We won't. Is this previous order of
4 President Lilic that we just spoke about now something that can be one of
5 the grounds on the basis of which this instruction was issued?
6 A. If I remember correctly the number, which is N 1, then that is
7 this order and it constitutes one of the basis for this instruction.
8 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can we now look at English page 2.
9 It's a long document, but we're going to focus only on some parts of it.
10 Q. Item 4 reads:
11 "For people in the KC service of professional soldiers and
12 civilians from entering into professional military service, the resolving
13 of service status, promotion, exercising other service rights, and until
14 cessation of professional military service, shall be regulated in line
15 with the procedure and pursuant to the regulations relating to the
16 Yugoslav Army."
17 This is what this item reads. Is my understanding of this part
18 in accordance with what we read before, and to which President Lilic's
19 order refers to, about the setting up of the Personnel Centre says that
20 their status-related rights would be regulated in accordance with the
21 rules and regulations that apply to the Yugoslav Army? I'm talking about
22 the status in the service.
23 Is that right?
24 A. Not only the status in the service but also other rights that
25 stem from that stated in the same manner as it applied to other members
1 of the Yugoslav Army.
2 Q. The focus and the emphasise here is on the rights that derive
3 from the status.
4 A. Yes. This item particularly refers to their rights.
5 Q. From your answers given in examination-in-chief, we have heard
6 that the Law on the Army precisely and accurately regulates the status in
7 the service. These rules and regulations were very simple and clear; is
8 that correct?
9 A. Yes, I think that they are.
10 Q. You would agree with me that there was no need to regulate
11 something with a special order of the president of Yugoslavia, relating
12 to something that is already stipulated by the Law on the Army concerning
13 the status?
14 A. Not only that it is unnecessary, and it is also impermissible,
15 because the Law on the Army is also binding on the president of the
17 Q. One of the answers about the reasons was that the underlying
18 motive was because of those people were, at the time, members of
19 different armies, because had they been members of the Yugoslav Army,
20 they would exercise these rights according to the Law on the
21 Yugoslav Army because all these status-related issues were covered by
22 this law.
23 A. I believe that that is the crux of the problem. Who are you to
24 consider a member of the army? And which army? In fact, whether a
25 decision on that matter, who is a member of the army, should be taken on
1 the basis of the legal status, or on the basis of some factual situations
2 and status.
3 It is difficult to choose between the two, but it seems to me
4 that the overruling option should be the legal status because there are
5 numerous factual situations, and they simply evade the possibility for
6 them to be regulated according to the law and rules and regulations.
7 Q. Very well. You didn't answer my question though. Let me go back
8 and be more precise, although your answer did cover a lot of the topic.
9 Was there any reason to issue a special order by the president of
10 the Republic, and consequently by his subordinate within the chain of
11 command that refer to the individuals who were, according to their
12 service status, members of the VJ, if that was already regulated by the
14 A. Obviously there were no legal grounds for that, or wouldn't exist
15 if we were to apply the interpretation that you have just provided.
16 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Let us now look at article -- excuse
17 me, just one minute.
18 Chapter 5, Article 33, page 7 in English, page 10 in the B/C/S.
19 Item 33.
20 Q. This chapter speaks about the return assignment and transfer of
21 professional soldiers and civilian personnel from the Personnel Centre
22 and Items 33 reads:
23 "In keeping with service requirements, professional soldiers and
24 civilian personnel sent or transferred to the KC" -- which stands for the
25 Personnel Centre, "may be returned, assigned, or transferred to
1 Yugoslav Army units/institutions with the consent or on the
2 recommendation of the KC Main Staff."
3 Main Staff of the Personnel Centre.
4 If this paragraph stipulates that they can return to the
5 Yugoslav Army, am I right in understanding it, that at this point of
6 time, they were not in the VJ, since this paragraph provides for their
8 A. To put it simply, there is no other reasonable or legal
9 understanding of this item. But if you view this paragraph separate from
10 everything else that we have seen ...
11 Q. The next paragraph of this same item speaks about the procedure.
12 I'm going to skip this and move to paragraph 34.
13 MR. HARMON: Excuse me, I'm not sure the answer, the complete
14 answer, of Mr. Starcevic was recorded. I refer to line -- page 87, line
16 JUDGE MOLOTO: Hmm. It doesn't look complete, indeed.
17 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I think this is exactly what
18 Mr. Starcevic said. But perhaps --
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, if I can be of any assistance,
20 this was my answer.
21 JUDGE MOLOTO: But it doesn't sound like a complete answer.
22 You say, but if you view this paragraph separate from everything else
23 that we have seen ...
24 That's what it says there. What will happen if I view it that
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Let me try and explain.
2 The counsel has offered an interpretation for which I said that
3 there could be no other reasonable or legal understanding of this item.
4 But, if we perceive this item separate from other provisions that we have
5 seen before, but only if we perceive this item separate.
6 This is another linguistic problem because this is not
7 inconsistent with the English word order and syntax.
8 JUDGE MOLOTO: [Previous translation continues] ... it -- the
9 "but" was a new sentence. If it had been in one sentence, yes.
10 Go ahead.
11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, that's precisely the case.
12 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. Mr. Starcevic, let's look at paragraph 34 and comment on it:
14 "With the consent and on the recommendation of the KC Main Staff,
15 professional soldiers and civilian personnel in the KC records whose
16 professional military service ceases on many legal grounds shall be sent
17 to the KC personnel department to resolve the cessation in service and
18 for removal from the KC records."
19 Similarly in the previous item, we see in the formulation of the
20 procedure that the term KC Main Staff is being used?
21 A. Yes, can I see that.
22 Q. My question is: These are the notions and the terms that -- and
23 regulations that refer to the status-related issues such as transfer and
24 other things, and these are regulated; is that correct?
25 A. Yes. They are regulated by the Law on the Army and other by-laws
1 which serve for the implementation of the main law.
2 Q. Was it necessary for any category of the service related status
3 envisaged by the law to be regulated by this kind of order, if it
4 pertains to the members of the VJ?
5 A. In my opinion, no.
6 Q. Let us now move to the Law on the Army of Republika Srpska.
7 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] So can we have on our screens
8 Exhibit P191, pages 1, both in the English and the B/C/S version.
9 [Defence counsel confer]
10 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] When I was reading when both
11 Mr. Starcevic and I mentioned KC, I think that everybody, the Chamber and
12 everyone else know that this refers to the Personnel Centre, the acronym
13 of which would be PC.
14 Q. Now, this is the Law on the Army of Republika Srpska, Article 2
15 is something that I'm interested in and it reads as follows:
16 "The military service in the army shall include military and
17 other duties in the active duty and reserve forces in peacetime and
19 Is that correct?
20 A. Yes. That's a quotation.
21 Q. So this is a definition of the service which is more or less
22 identical in all the relevant roles, including the Law on the
23 Yugoslav Army?
24 A. And in other countries as well.
25 Q. Article 4 speaks about the relations in -- in the army, and this
1 was the subject of our discussion at the beginning of this questioning
2 and that is the relationship between the subordinates and superiors
3 within the chain of command.
4 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Let us now look at Article 153, page
5 15 in B/C/S, and page 22 in English.
6 Q. Since you already commented this article, and it refers to the
7 chain of command, can we look at page 36 in B/C/S and page 54 in English.
8 Article 370, 36 in B/C/S, 54 in English. Article 370.
9 This is a still the Law on the Army of Republika Srpska. If we
10 can just scroll up in order for us to see which chapter we are dealing
11 with in B/C/S.
12 We're going to finish very soon for today.
13 JUDGE MOLOTO: [Microphone not activated]
14 MR. LUKIC: It's okay.
15 [Interpretation] I would suggest that we adjourn for today,
16 because we are entering now in a different area, and this is a very
17 difficult chapter, and probably to give time, Mr. Starcevic, to rest.
18 So we can adjourn two minutes before the time.
19 JUDGE MOLOTO: Okay. Thank you so much, Mr. Lukic.
20 We will take a break, Mr. Starcevic. I don't need to repeat
21 myself. You know you don't have to talk to anybody. We come back
22 tomorrow. Again, times have changed. We're still at 9.00 in the morning
23 tomorrow, Courtroom I.
24 Court adjourned.
25 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.45 p.m.,
1 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 10th day of
2 June, 2009, at 9.00 a.m.