Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 10676

 1                           Tuesday, 9 March 2010

 2                           [Open session]

 3                           [The accused entered court]

 4                           [The witness takes the stand]

 5                           --- Upon commencing at 9.02 a.m.

 6             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Good morning to everybody in and around the

 7     courtroom.  Mr. Registrar, will you please call the case.

 8             THE REGISTRAR:  Good morning, Your Honours.  Good morning to

 9     everyone in and around the courtroom.  This is case number IT-04-81-T,

10     the Prosecutor versus Momcilo Perisic.  Thank you.

11             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you so much.  Could we have appearances

12     starting with the Prosecution.

13             MR. THOMAS:  Good morning, Your Honours.  Good morning, General.

14     Good morning, everybody in and around the courtroom.  Barney Thomas,

15     Carmela Javier, and Dan Saxon.

16             JUDGE MOLOTO:  And for the Defence.

17             MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours.  Good

18     morning to all.  On behalf of Mr. Perisic, Novak Lukic, Gregor Guy-Smith,

19     Tina Drolec and Boris Zorko.

20             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you very much, Mr. Lukic.  Good morning,

21     Mr. Nikolic.

22             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours.

23             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Once again, and I know you know it, but I just

24     want to remind you that you are still bound by the declaration that you

25     made at the beginning of your testimony to tell the truth, the whole

Page 10677

 1     truth and nothing else but the truth.

 2             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I do know that, Your Honours.

 3             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Yes, Mr. Lukic, you were on an objection

 4     yesterday.

 5             MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I think as far as my objection is

 6     concerned, Mr. Thomas might probably be in a position to provide a better

 7     reply than myself.

 8             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Mr. Thomas.

 9             MR. THOMAS:  Sir, I have's discussed the matter my learned friend

10     after with closed yesterday.  I withdraw the question that was on the

11     table as at the moment the objection was made.  I will return to the

12     document but do so in a different fashion.

13             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you very much, Mr. Thomas.

14                           WITNESS:  STAMENKO NIKOLIC [Resumed]

15                           Cross-examination by Mr. Thomas: [Continued]

16        Q.   General, good morning.  We will continue with our questions again

17     regarding your testimony.  Can I please just repeat what I suggested to

18     you at the start of our questions yesterday, which is please listen very

19     closely to the question that I'm asking you, please answer only that

20     question otherwise I will need to interrupt you and we will need to start

21     again.  Also if you need a break at any stage, of course, please just let

22     us know.  If there are any questions or if there's anything about my

23     questioning that you do not understand, please say so, and I will put it

24     a different way for you.  Once again, are we clear?

25        A.   Yes, that is very clear.  Thank you very much.

Page 10678

 1        Q.   Thank you, General.

 2             MR. THOMAS:  Mr. Registrar, could we please have document D246 on

 3     the screen.

 4        Q.   Now, General, you looked at this document on Friday from memory,

 5     and you described it as a schedule that depicted -- well, as the title

 6     says, The numerical strength in May 1995 of the 30th Personnel Centre.

 7     And you pointed to a total, I think, of 2.276 officers who you described

 8     as officers receiving their salaries through the 30th Personnel Centre.

 9     And you made a comment at that point which was however to that number you

10     also need to add the contract soldiers.  And what I want to ask you, sir,

11     is how are the figures affected by the addition of contract soldiers

12     associated with the 30th Personnel Centre?

13        A.   Yes.  I'm looking at this table, and it was my administration

14     that produced it.  I was its head, and I believe this happened back in

15     1995.  The only time I stepped in was about this figure 2.276 and then

16     146 was added to that, totalling 2.421.  The discrepancy here, you talked

17     about contract soldiers.  The contract soldiers are part of this group of

18     persons whose salaries are paid through the 30th Personnel Centre.

19        Q.   And just briefly, General, for Their Honours, can you explain the

20     difference between a contract soldier and an officer?

21        A.   Yes.  May I?

22        Q.   Yes, please.

23        A.   The professional officer in NCO is taken on with no fixed term,

24     once they are out of secondary school and military academy.  The contract

25     soldier, on the other hand, is a soldier who served his regular military

Page 10679

 1     term, and then in keeping with the regulations at some later date, is he

 2     admitted or taken on by the army on a professional basis, but only for a

 3     fixed term depending on what the regulations stipulate, three, five more

 4     years.

 5        Q.   We see at least in May 1995 there's only a small number of

 6     contract soldiers.  Do you know whether contract soldiers were sent

 7     regularly through the 30th Personnel Centre to the VRS?

 8        A.   Perhaps on an individual basis, but I wouldn't call that regular.

 9     I'm not exactly sure what you mean by that.

10        Q.   Well, let me ask you the question another way.  At any given time

11     did the number of officers assigned through the 30th Personnel Centre

12     greatly exceed the number of contract soldiers; is that a fair comment?

13        A.   No.  May I provide an explanation, please?

14        Q.   General, let me ask you the question another way.  The 30th

15     Personnel Centre --

16        A.   The figure was always within that range, 150, 160, depending on

17     the point in time we are talking about.

18        Q.   Thank you, that's what I was trying to ask.  Thank you for your

19     answer.

20             MR. THOMAS:  Can we go again, please, Mr. Registrar, to P851.

21        Q.   And, General, you will recognise this document when it comes on

22     the screen as one we were looking at last evening.  First, can you

23     confirm for us that it is signed by General Perisic?

24        A.   Before I answer this one, you say I saw this one yesterday,

25     whereas I don't think I did.  I don't think I've ever seen this one

Page 10680

 1     before.

 2        Q.   All right.  General, you may be correct, this may be the document

 3     that we were just about to place on the screen when we adjourned last

 4     night.

 5        A.   As far as the question is concerned, whether General Perisic

 6     signed this, you can look at his signature and that confirms it, yes.

 7     But may I just be given a chance to read through it?

 8        Q.   Of course.

 9        A.   Yes, I'm done.  Thank you.

10        Q.   You'll see that the document records the transfer of 500.000

11     dinar from the General Staff through the General Staff's accounting

12     centre to the VRS Main Staff for salaries of 30th Personnel Centre

13     officers during the period of the sanctions imposed by the FRY on the RS.

14     Do you see that?  Or do you agree?

15             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Yes, Mr. Lukic.

16             MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I'm not quite sure that Mr. Thomas's

17     question reflects the substance of the document.  Perhaps if he tries to

18     take a slightly more specific approach in interpreting what the document

19     says.  Or perhaps his theory is different from what the document actually

20     says, in which case he should clearly state that.

21             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Yes, Mr. Thomas.

22             MR. THOMAS:  Your Honour, with all due respect to my learned

23     friend, I was asking the general for his response to that proposition,

24     not my learned friend.  I have a document, I've suggested to him what I

25     say the document says.  It's for the general to accept or reject that

Page 10681

 1     proposition.  If the general doesn't think this is what the letter

 2     records, that's exactly what I've asked him, sir, do you agree that this

 3     is what the letter tells us.

 4             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Objection overruled.

 5             MR. THOMAS:  Thank you, sir.

 6        Q.   General, do you agree with my interpretation of this document?

 7        A.   Esteemed Mr. Prosecutor, it's not about interpretation here, it's

 8     about the wording.  As for the wording of the document, I'm reading it.

 9     As far as that is concerned, yes.  As far as an explanation is concerned,

10     I'll try to take the following approach in answering:  May I answer the

11     question in two parts?

12        Q.   Go ahead, please.

13        A.   Mr. Prosecutor, while I was being examined by Mr. Lukic he was

14     adamant that you I should explain the general purposes and tasks of

15     certain organisational units of the defence ministry.  Under the rules on

16     their respective areas of competence, I briefly explained that the --

17        Q.   General, I'm sorry, please pause.  I understand what you feel you

18     need to do, but we need to stick to the question.  Let me rephrase this

19     so we can take this slowly.  Let's look at the first line.  In

20     mid-September 1994, this is the period during the period under which the

21     Republika Srpska was under sanctions imposed by the FRY; is that correct?

22        A.   Correct.

23        Q.   The Supreme Defence Council made a decision to suspend payment of

24     salaries to your people, and in the context of this letter, given that

25     it's General Perisic writing to General Mladic or writing to the -- yes,

Page 10682

 1     writing to General Mladic, would you agree that refers to salaries to

 2     members of the 30th Personnel Centre fighting in the VRS?

 3        A.   Yes.

 4        Q.   The next line says that there has been an agreement between

 5     General Mladic and General Perisic to send 500.000 dinar, which was done

 6     on the 21st of September.  The money was collected by General Tomic, and

 7     it's recorded in the General Staff, VJ General Staff accounting centre as

 8     a temporary payment.  I'm reading from the document, so no doubt you

 9     don't have any dispute with what I've just read, correct?

10        A.   What you just read out is exactly what it says, yes.

11             MR. THOMAS:  Can we go to document P2770, please.

12             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, may I be allowed to

13     ask a question.  I don't think I actually finished my sentence.

14             MR. THOMAS:

15        Q.   If you didn't finish your answer, sir, please finish your answer.

16        A.   You stopped my in midstream.  I was trying to --

17        Q.   General, pause, please.  I'm not trying to prevent you from

18     saying anything, but I need you to stick to the questions that I asked

19     and that's why I had to stop you midstream, all right.  I was looking for

20     you to focus on a particular subject and that is why I point stopped and

21     I re-asked the questioned again.  All right.  We need to get through your

22     testimony, sir.  I don't want you here all week.  None of us want you

23     here all week.  All right.  Please, you will have the opportunity under

24     re-examination to answer any questions that Mr. Lukic feels should be put

25     to you.  While I'm asking you questions, sir, just answer my questions.

Page 10683

 1             MR. THOMAS:  Can we please have document P2770.  Thank you.

 2             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I understand.

 3             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Mr. Thomas, I'm told that's partly a confidential

 4     document.  We need to go into private session.

 5             MR. THOMAS:  Thank you, Your Honours.  If we could do that,

 6     please.

 7             JUDGE MOLOTO:  May the Chamber please move into private session.

 8     [Private session]       [Confidentiality lifted by order of the Chamber]

9             THE REGISTRAR:  We are in private session, Your Honours.

10             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you so much.  Yes, Mr. Thomas.

11             MR. THOMAS:

12        Q.   General, have you had the opportunity to read this document?  I

13     see the original is difficult to read.

14        A.   No.

15             MR. THOMAS:  Okay.  I wonder, Mr. Registrar, it is a difficult

16     copy to read on the screen as it is.

17        Q.   Do you need it any larger, General?

18        A.   I can't read this, I'm sorry.

19        Q.   All right.  Thank you.  We'll take that off the screen.  I won't

20     ask you questions about it, General.

21             Last week when you were talking about the 30th Personnel --

22             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Do you still want to stay in private session?

23             MR. THOMAS:  I'm sorry, Your Honours, we can go back into open

24     session.

25             JUDGE MOLOTO:  May the Chamber please move into open session

Page 10684

 1                           [Open session]

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

 3             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you so much.  Yes, Mr. Thomas, you may

 4     proceed.

 5             MR. THOMAS:

 6        Q.   General, do I understand your position on the 30th Personnel

 7     Centre members to be that once they are appointed to the 30th Personnel

 8     Centre and once they are then within the VRS chain of command that all of

 9     the regulation of their status or issues was performed by the VRS?

10        A.   That was certainly the case.

11             MR. THOMAS:  All right.  I want to look, please, at Exhibit

12     P2417, please.

13        Q.   General, what we see on the screen is a decision of the VRS Main

14     Staff disciplinary military court or the disciplinary military court

15     attached to the air force and PVO command of the VRS, involving a number

16     of individuals, but one of those you will see in the middle of the first

17     paragraph is a Captain Antic.  You see that?

18        A.   Yes.

19             MR. THOMAS:  If we go, please, to -- stay on that page in the

20     B/C/S, Your Honours, but if -- thank you, go to page 2, we have that.

21        Q.   You will see that in the first paragraph under "Are Guilty" you

22     will find they were found guilty of abandoning their unit.  You see that?

23        A.   Yes.

24        Q.   And if we go to the number 2 at the very bottom of the page that

25     you are looking at.

Page 10685

 1             MR. THOMAS:  And, Your Honours, we'll need to go to the next page

 2     in the English.

 3        Q.   You will see that the sentence imposed for accused number 2,

 4     which is Mr. Antic, is the loss of service status as an active

 5     serviceman.  Do you see that?

 6        A.   Yes.

 7             MR. THOMAS:  The next document I want to go to, please, is P2418.

 8        Q.   Now, on the basis of that decision, in other words, the decision

 9     finding Mr. Antic guilty of desertion, there is a recommendation to end

10     professional military service.  And this is what we are looking at on the

11     screen.  Can you tell me the purpose of this document, please?

12        A.   This is a serious disciplinary infraction.  The person who left

13     his unit and his duty without proper authorisation, the military

14     disciplinary court imposed a disciplinary measure by removing this person

15     from active service, the person you named a minute ago.  In cases such as

16     that, the appropriate officer from the personnel centre must start

17     termination proceedings, and that is precisely what the document shows.

18        Q.   All right.

19             MR. THOMAS:  Can we go, please, to document 2419, please.

20        Q.   Sir, based on the recommendation issued by the 30th Personnel

21     Centre, itself based on the VRS Main Staff disciplinary court decision,

22     we have this order issued by the chief of the personnel administration,

23     the General Staff of the VJ, terminating the service of Zoran Antic, and

24     the reason for the end of service is recorded in the middle of the page

25     we are looking at, "absent without leave for five consecutive days."

Page 10686

 1             So is this the net result of his being found guilty in the VRS

 2     disciplinary court?

 3        A.   Yes, a correction I'll have to make though.  He did not just

 4     leave his position, he left the entire unit, not having been authorised

 5     to do that.  Under Article 7, paragraph 1 of the Law on the Armed Forces,

 6     this constitutes a reason for termination of service.

 7        Q.   And because he was a member of the VJ transferred to the 30th

 8     Personnel Centre, if the VRS wanted him terminated, that had to happen in

 9     the VJ; is that correct?

10        A.   Yes, it was the VJ, but please allow me to complete my answer.

11        Q.   Yes.  Please do.

12        A.   Yesterday we discussed this.  With a decision of this kind on the

13     termination of the professional military service, he ceased to enjoy any

14     of the status-related issues, and this is why this particular body had to

15     issue such a decision.  So this only related to the status-related issues

16     or entitlements.

17        Q.   Effectively you are saying that the VJ had to do what the VRS

18     said in this particular circumstance, namely terminate him; is that

19     right?

20        A.   Yes.  It confirmed the decision of the military disciplinary

21     court.

22             MR. THOMAS:  Can we have document P2765 on the screen, please.

23     Sorry, Your Honours, wrong document.  P2420.

24        Q.   We have another VRS military disciplinary court decision, this

25     time of the court attached to the air force and PVO.  You will see from

Page 10687

 1     the document in front of you that a number of personnel including Major

 2     Vujic are again found guilty of absconding from their unit.

 3             MR. THOMAS:  And, Your Honours, we will need to go to page 2 in

 4     the English to see the finding that they have been found guilty of

 5     absconding from their unit, and that is found on the final paragraph of

 6     that page.

 7        Q.   Once again, General, we have a familiar sentence, if you look at

 8     number 3 -- sorry, number 2, at the bottom of your page in the B/C/S.

 9             MR. THOMAS:  And, Mr. Registrar, if we could please go to the

10     next page in the English.

11        Q.   We will see that under number 2, Major Vujic, in fact all of

12     them, but the person I'm interested for the moment is Major Vujic, is

13     sentenced to the disciplinary punishment of loss of service status as an

14     active serviceman.  You see that?

15        A.   Yes.

16        Q.   So if what you said about the previous person we were look at,

17     Captain Antic is correct, Major Vujic would have had his service

18     terminated both in the VRS and in the VJ as a result of this decision; is

19     that right?

20        A.   This is a judgement.  The judgement must be respected and this is

21     true of both of them, but you have to read the entire statement of

22     reasons of this judgement.

23             MR. THOMAS:  Can we go, please, to P2421, please.

24        Q.   Now, General, as you see this letter, you will see that it comes

25     from --

Page 10688

 1        A.   Could you please enlarge this a little bit.  It is rather

 2     difficult to read this.

 3             MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Just for the witness to know and

 4     possibly Mr. Thomas also wanted to explain this, who issued this

 5     document, because the way in which this is placed on the screen now in

 6     B/C/S it is unclear who signed this document or where it came from.

 7             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Mr. Thomas.

 8             MR. THOMAS:  Thank you, sir.  Is that the top of the document,

 9     Mr. Registrar, in B/C/S?  All right.

10        Q.   Sir, take a moment to read the document and then we will put the

11     English version on the screen as well.

12        A.   I apologise, could we see the text further down.  Thank you.  I

13     have read this.

14        Q.   All right.

15             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Could perhaps the witness --

16             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I apologise, I haven't seen the

17     second page.  I have read it.

18             MR. THOMAS:

19        Q.   Thank you, General.  Can we please -- thank you.  Can you confirm

20     for us what we are looking at is a letter from VJ air force and PVO

21     command to the personnel administration of the General Staff of the VJ?

22        A.   Yes, that's what the text says.

23        Q.   And what they are talking about is the decision that we have just

24     been looking at, the judgement entered by the military disciplinary court

25     against Vujic and others, with a sentence as termination of service,

Page 10689

 1     correct?

 2        A.   Yes.

 3             MR. THOMAS:  Can we go to page 2 in the English, please,

 4     Mr. Registrar.

 5        Q.   Now, you've told us that this should result in their termination

 6     in the VJ, but we don't need to -- we don't need to take you through each

 7     paragraph in this letter, but the balance -- does the balance of the

 8     letter comprise a request from the commander to retain these men in the

 9     VJ because they are still valuable to the VJ?  In other words, to ignore

10     the VRS disciplinary court decision?

11        A.   This documents of the commander of the air force and PVO is in my

12     belief just a letter sent to the General Staff of the Yugoslav Army.

13     When we are talking about military disciplinary courts, we need to know

14     that they are independent, and in my mind he was supposed to address a

15     higher military disciplinary court, rather than the General Staff of the

16     VJ.

17             So in this letter, he is simply asking for the court decisions to

18     be revised.  This was addressed to the personnel administration which is

19     not competent to decide on such matters.

20        Q.   Well, the commander of the -- or the commander of the air force

21     who read the decision makes the comment, does he not, and we can see it,

22     Your Honours, the first full paragraph in the English that is on the

23     screen at the moment.  He makes -- and I appreciate this is his own

24     observation, the observation:

25             "That the proceedings of the trial and the rendering of the

Page 10690

 1     judgements were not conducted in accordance with the regulations on

 2     military discipline in the VJ.  Namely, the persons involved are members

 3     of the RV and PVO who had been sent temporarily to work in the units of

 4     the 30th Personnel Centre.  And, therefore, in our opinion, the

 5     conducting of proceedings for the violation of military discipline by the

 6     above members of the RV and PVO is in the jurisdiction of the military

 7     disciplinary court attached to the command of the air force."

 8             That is part of this argument, is it not?  Yes or no, sir?

 9        A.   Yes, this is his argument, but once again, I would like to point

10     out that the commander of the air force --

11        Q.   Pause, sir.

12        A.   All right.

13        Q.   I understand this is only a letter from him to the Main Staff.

14     That is why I'm limiting my questions to the matters that I have limited

15     them to.  All right.

16             JUDGE MOLOTO:  I would like to read this letter to the end.

17             MR. THOMAS:  Certainly.

18             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you.

19             MR. THOMAS:

20        Q.   All right.  So this letter is dated the 29th of January, 1996.

21     The officers concerned including Lieutenant-Colonel Vujic have been found

22     guilty and sentenced to termination.

23             MR. THOMAS:  So what I want to go now to, please, is P2422.

24        Q.   Which is coming.  Now, General, what we see here is the order

25     terminating service for Mr. Vujic, but it is not dated 1996.  He remained

Page 10691

 1     in service until 12 October 2005, and was terminated on the basis that he

 2     had reached 30 years of pensionable service.  So my question to you is,

 3     does not that show that he remained in service in the VJ notwithstanding

 4     the documents that we have just been reviewing?

 5        A.   I would kindly ask this order to be enlarged because I have

 6     difficulties reading this statement of reasons.  Thank you.  Could we

 7     scroll this down, please.  Could I now answer to your question,

 8     Mr. Prosecutor.

 9        Q.   My question, sir, is notwithstanding the documents that we have

10     just been reviewing, clearly Mr. Vujic remained in the service of the VJ

11     until this order was issued, whereupon he was terminated because he had

12     reached 30 pensionable years of service?

13        A.   Yes, this document says until that it should be submitted to him

14     until the 31st of October, 2005.  However -- but this is my speculation.

15     Probably during the procedure of the termination of his service he got

16     ill.  In the statement of reasons in paragraph 2, if you can see this,

17     please allow me to read this out.  Yes, this is the portion I'm talking

18     about.  Here it says that the above-mentioned person was pursuant to the

19     finding of the medical commission of the 29th of September, was found to

20     be permanently incapacitated to carry out his service.  And in line with

21     the decision of the minister of defence and then have the reference

22     number of 28th of May, 2005, item 1, subparagraph (2), his professional

23     military service shall be terminated to professional military serviceman

24     who have been partially incapacitated and who have reached 30 serviceable

25     years, well, for benefit, regardless of their rank or age.  Given that I

Page 10692

 1     do not have any other documents here before me from which I could

 2     conclude what it is that actually happened, I can only conclude that

 3     during the procedure of his termination, this particular person got ill,

 4     that he was, therefore, treated and that he was finally found to be

 5     incapacitated for his military service.

 6        Q.   All right.  General, let me ask you the question a slightly

 7     different way.  Go, please, to the first paragraph under the statement of

 8     reasons.

 9             MR. THOMAS:  And that's on the previous page, Mr. Registrar, in

10     the English.

11        Q.   We know from that first paragraph it was established that he was

12     in service without break since 22 July 1977 and has earned over 30

13     serviceable years for welfare benefit.

14        A.   And your question is?

15        Q.   Well, that's what we know from the document, correct?

16        A.   This is what the document states, but this is linked to Article

17     107, paragraph 1, item 1 of the Law on the Army of Yugoslavia, so the

18     person that is found by the relevant military medical review board as

19     unfit will be permanently terminated and such a finding is obligatory for

20     his superior to adopt appropriate decision terminating his service.

21        Q.   All right.  Thank you, General.

22             MR. THOMAS:  Your Honours, could we please go quickly into

23     private session.

24             JUDGE MOLOTO:  May the Chamber please move into private session.

25    [Private session]      [Confidentiality lifted by order of the Chamber]

Page 10693

1             THE REGISTRAR:  We are in private session, Your Honours.

 2             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you so much.  Yes, Mr. Thomas.

 3             MR. THOMAS:  Thank you.  Could we please have Exhibit P2765 on

 4     the screen.

 5        Q.   General, you can see that this is a document sent from the Main

 6     Staff of the Army of the Republika Srpska to the General Staff of the

 7     Yugoslav Army.

 8             MR. THOMAS:  If we could go to the last -- sorry, the --

 9             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.

10             MR. THOMAS:  Page 4 in the English, and the signature page in the

11     B/C/S.  I'm not sure what page that is, Mr. Registrar.  It's probably

12     page 3.

13        Q.   Do you recognise the signature of General Mladic at the bottom of

14     that document, sir?

15        A.   I do not recognise his signature.  I'm not aware of what his

16     signature looked like, but I see that this document was signed.

17        Q.   Thank you.

18             MR. THOMAS:  If we could go back to page 1 in each version,

19     please.

20             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] And once again, if we could enlarge

21     this document, please.

22             MR. THOMAS:  We can do this paragraph by paragraph,

23     Mr. Registrar, if we start with paragraph 1, please, the first paragraph

24     of the document.  And if we can have the English on the screen as well.

25             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can't read this.  It is just too

Page 10694

 1     small.  If we could enlarge this.  Or if you have this document in a hard

 2     copy version possibly I could read it then.  This way I can't read it.

 3             MR. THOMAS:  Your Honours, I do.  I have a single copy.  It's

 4     marked, I need to show it to my learned friends first.  I understand that

 5     this can be done.  Thank you.

 6        Q.   General, I can tell you that we don't need to read the entire

 7     letter.  I can -- the answer to my question -- to answer the question

 8     that follows, you really only need to read the first paragraph and then

 9     the paragraph -- or the first half of the paragraph numbered 1 that

10     follows.

11             My question, General, is this:  Does General Mladic's complaint

12     to the General Staff not suggest that the VRS were not as free to

13     regulate the status of -- or to regulate the status and issues relating

14     to 30th Personnel Centre members as you have said?

15        A.   No.

16        Q.   What is he complaining about?

17        A.   From what I could read in this brief time, he complains that the

18     requested men are not being regularly sent from the command chain of the

19     Army of Yugoslavia into the command chain of the Army of Republika

20     Srpska.  And he is also saying that he shouldn't be continuously asked to

21     send requests for this to the Supreme Defence Council or Chief of the

22     General Staff.  So he is simply asking for the administrative burden to

23     be decreased since he is saying all the regulations have been harmonised

24     with the relevant criteria, and he says that all the documents concerning

25     their status-related issues have already been submitted.

Page 10695

 1        Q.   He complains also, does he not, about the need to have personnel

 2     transferred with the approval of the competent officer in the General

 3     Staff of the VJ?  He complains about the problems that having to go

 4     through that step causes, doesn't he?

 5        A.   Yes, but he says that these transfers are made through the 30th

 6     Personnel Centre in line with the regulations and orders stipulating the

 7     way in which these personnel centres operate.

 8        Q.   All right.

 9             MR. THOMAS:  Thank you.  Your Honours, if we could have that

10     document off the screen, and we can go back into public session.

11             JUDGE MOLOTO:  May the Chamber please move into open session.

12                           [Open session]

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

14             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you so much.  Yes, Mr. Thomas.

15             MR. THOMAS:

16        Q.   General, sometime last week you discussed the agreement on

17     special parallel relations.

18             MR. THOMAS:  Thank you, Mr. Registrar, could we please retrieve

19     the document, or madam usher, thank you.

20        Q.   You discussed the agreement on special parallel relations between

21     the FRY and the RS, part of which covered the assumption of full

22     responsibility, if I can call it that, of soldiers previously

23     administered by the 30th Personnel Centre.  These were now to be, or

24     those records and the payment of them were to be taken over by the VRS as

25     a result of the annex to the special parallel relations agreement; is

Page 10696

 1     that correct?

 2             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Yes, Mr. Lukic.  Yes, Mr. Thomas.

 3             MR. THOMAS:

 4        Q.   Have I stated the position correctly, sir?  General, you may

 5     answer this.

 6        A.   The question is slightly confusing.  It's complicated.  I don't

 7     think I even understood fully.  Can you please repeat.

 8        Q.   Certainly.

 9             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Yes, Mr. Lukic.

10             MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] That was precisely the reason I

11     sprang to my feet, I think it was about the interpretation.  The

12     interpreter got it right, but there were some ambiguities left.  It is a

13     complex question, after all.  I think it might be a good idea if

14     Mr. Thomas could just break it down.

15             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Yes, Mr. Thomas.

16             MR. THOMAS:

17        Q.   You spoke of the negotiations and discussions that took place in

18     2001 regarding the drafting and implementation of the agreement on

19     special parallel relations between the FRY and the RS.  Do you recall

20     that testimony?

21        A.   Yes.

22        Q.   Part of the special parallel relations agreement contained an

23     annex which governed how the VRS was to take over the records and payment

24     of salaries of service of officers previously administered through the

25     30th Personnel Centre, didn't it?

Page 10697

 1        A.   No.  That's not what the agreement says.

 2        Q.   Well, was there not an agreement between the FRY and the RS over

 3     the VRS receiving aid from the FRY, financial aid from the FRY for the

 4     purpose of paying VRS salaries?

 5        A.   Well, that calls for a different answer, an altogether different

 6     answer.  Certain financial aid will be exchanged between the countries,

 7     but it won't be the VJ paying it, rather the VRS alone.  That is the

 8     substance of the agreement.  This is an agreement between the two

 9     governments.  Up to a certain point in time aid will be provided.  When

10     that aid will stop is a different issue altogether, but it's not the VJ

11     making any payments, especially not along the same principle that had

12     been applied up to that point.

13             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Can we just make sure that we've got the record

14     correct.  Page 22, line 5, did you say but it won't be the VJ paying it

15     rather the VRS alone, or did you say something else?

16             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I can't remember what

17     exactly that paragraph of the agreement says.  If I had it in front of

18     me, I could quote it for you.  What I do remember, however, and what I

19     know --

20             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Just a minute.  I'm not asking you whether you

21     remember the paragraph.  I'm asking you what you just said.  You said

22     here, I'm trying to make sure that you have been correctly interpreted,

23     sir.  You have been interpreted as, or transcribed rather --

24             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, it was not the correct

25     interpretation.  May I repeat, please?

Page 10698

 1             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Yes, please, just that sentence.

 2             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The VJ would stop making any

 3     payments to members of the VRS and the Serbian Krajina, but here

 4     specifically the VRS, who had been paid through the 30th Personnel Centre

 5     up until that point in time.  Nevertheless, a financial aid package was

 6     agreed between the two governments or the relevant ministries for certain

 7     aid to be awarded, administered, and certain financial amounts.  However,

 8     the salaries would only be paid and calculated by the VRS and no one

 9     else.

10             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Mr. Nikolic, you talk of financial aid.  I don't

11     know what form this financial aid takes.  I'm asking you, can you just

12     listen to my question.  You have said in answer to a question by

13     Mr. Thomas:

14             "Well, that calls for a different answer, an altogether different

15     answer.  Certain financial aid will be exchanged between the countries,

16     but it won't be the VJ paying it, rather the VRS alone."  Now, I want to

17     find out whether that's what you said, or did you say something slightly

18     different?  Did you say the VRS alone --

19             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes.  Yes.

20             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you.  You may proceed, Mr. Thomas.

21             MR. THOMAS:

22        Q.   Perhaps just to clarify that, General.  As a result of this

23     agreement, the VRS and the VRS alone were responsible for paying the

24     salaries of all VRS officers; is that right?

25        A.   No, and I'll answer why.  You didn't ask me about the specific

Page 10699

 1     time-period.  You said all members of the army.  From what point in time

 2     on?

 3        Q.   General, pause, think about my question.  I'm not talking about

 4     time-periods.  As a result of this agreement that we have just been

 5     discussing, that you have spent the last ten minutes discussing, as a

 6     result of this agreement, it was the VRS now who were to be responsible

 7     for paying the salaries of officers within the VRS, including those

 8     previously administered by the 30th Personnel Centre; is that right?

 9        A.   Yes.

10        Q.   To assist them in doing so, the FRY government would provide

11     financial aid to the RS government; is that right?

12        A.   Yes.

13        Q.   Is it true that the continued provision of this aid, no longer in

14     the form of salaries but in the form of aid from one government to

15     another, still caused the international community some concern, and I'm

16     talking particularly about the United States?

17        A.   No.  I never heard that sort of information.  Nothing indicating

18     that.  At least not about the results of this agreement.  There was a

19     meeting, though, that occurred later on following the conclusion of the

20     agreement.  It wasn't about interventions on anyone's part.  Rather, we

21     were provided additional information.  It's about Warren Montgomery who

22     asked for a meeting with the federal Defence ministry of the FRY to see

23     what sort of aid was at stake here.  The meeting was held at the

24     Federation palace, what used to be call the Federation palace back then.

25     I saw the document and I know what Montgomery's position was.  He was

Page 10700

 1     particularly at pains to point out as follows:  Croatia's army --

 2        Q.   Pause, General.  Pause, General.  General, we recall your

 3     testimony on this document, and in that meeting Ambassador Montgomery

 4     referred to concern, at least back in the United States, among

 5     influential quarters that aid was continued to be paid from the FRY to

 6     the RS, didn't he?

 7        A.   I never learned of that.

 8             MR. THOMAS:  Well, let's have a look, please, at document -- let

 9     me check, Your Honours.  I'm sorry.  251.  D251.  And the paragraph I

10     want to look at, please, is on page 2 of both documents, I think.  Sorry,

11     Mr. Registrar, we have two B/C/S versions on our screen.  Thank you.

12        Q.   All right.  Do you see the paragraph, General, which refers to

13     the ambassador being informed by a senior official that assistance in all

14     forms of funding of the VRS will end this year?  First of all, just tell

15     me if you've found that paragraph in the document.

16        A.   Can you please specify which paragraph to avoid going through the

17     entire text.  Do you mean the last one?

18        Q.   This is a document you are familiar with.  We went through it

19     yesterday.  What I will do is I will read you the paragraph that I'm

20     interested in.  All right.  This is how it reads:

21             The ambassador has allegedly been informed by a senior

22     official -- sorry, has allegedly been informed by a -- I'll try it again,

23     I'm sorry, Your Honours.

24             "The ambassador has allegedly been informed by 'a senior

25     official' in our government that assistance and all forms of funding of

Page 10701

 1     the VRS will end this year.  This has been conveyed to relevant US

 2     authorities.  The secretary of state has informed congress.  However, it

 3     follows from the agreement with the Republika Srpska Ministry of Defence

 4     that the funding will continue next year, so 'the highest state organs of

 5     the US have been misinformed.'  In the US there are skeptics (but not in

 6     the government) who are doubtful about changes in the FRY; they are

 7     influential and are mainly present and non-governmental organisations and

 8     in congress."

 9             Now, let's not mince words about this, General.  There was

10     concern that money was still going to the VRS, wasn't there?

11        A.   No.

12             JUDGE MOLOTO:  [Microphone not activated] ... take a break.

13     We'll come back at quarter to.  Court adjourned.

14                           --- Recess taken at 10.16 a.m.

15                           --- On resuming at 10.47 a.m.

16             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Yes, Mr. Thomas.

17             MR. THOMAS:

18        Q.   General, I want to move on to a different topic now.  In the

19     course of your testimony you referred to this concept of unity of

20     command, and I just want to make sure that I understand the concept of

21     unity of command as distinct, for example, from the chain of command.  Am

22     I right in saying that when you talk about unity of command, you are

23     talking about the fact that a soldier has a single superior from whom he

24     is taking orders?

25        A.   Yes.

Page 10702

 1             THE INTERPRETER:  Interpreter's note:  Microphone for the

 2     witness, please.

 3             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Can you please answer again, sir, into the

 4     microphone.

 5             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.  But I have to answer the

 6     other question too.

 7             MR. THOMAS:

 8        Q.   Just pause, General, we'll get to that.  And the principle of

 9     unity of command is so that any given officer knows exactly who he is

10     supposed to receive orders from; is that right?

11        A.   Yes.

12        Q.   Depending on where that soldier or officer is in the chain of

13     command, however, there may be more officers in the chain of command

14     above that soldier's commanding officer, can't there?

15        A.   No, but allow me to explain why.

16        Q.   Please do.

17        A.   Each officer appointed to certain duty has a superior officer

18     above him, only one.  But there is also another who is the superior of

19     his direct superior.  This ultimately superior officer may issue an order

20     to the first officer.  Nevertheless, the first officer is under an

21     obligation to immediately report this to his direct superior.

22        Q.   I understand.

23             JUDGE MOLOTO:  I don't.

24             MR. THOMAS:

25        Q.   Could you explain that for Their Honours.

Page 10703

 1        A.   Of course.  In a military hierarchy, there are certain relations

 2     between servicemen.  This depends on the persons or the soldier's duty.

 3     We are talking about subordinates and superiors.  A superior officer

 4     is --

 5             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Sorry, just wait.  What I do want to understand is

 6     you have an officer or a soldier with a direct superior above him, and

 7     this superior has his own superior, okay?

 8             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, that's right.

 9             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Now, what I don't understand is what you mean by

10     "this ultimately superior" I guess you wanted to say this ultimate

11     superior officer may issue an order to the first officer, nevertheless

12     the first officer is under an obligation to immediately report to his

13     direct superior.  Now, the direct superior to whom he must report is the

14     same one who has just given the instruction.  If you say to me a superior

15     who wants to give instructions to a person who is not his direct

16     subordinate, would give instructions to his immediate subordinate who in

17     turn would pass the instructions to the next subordinate; is that what

18     you meant to say?

19             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour, but if I may,

20     just a brief explanation to put this in the most graphic terms possible.

21     May I?

22             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Mr. Lukic is on his feet so he takes precedent

23     over you.

24             MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I think we have a certain amount of

25     confusion because of inaccurate interpreting, and also I was listening to

Page 10704

 1     the interpretation of your question in the Serbian, Your Honour, and also

 2     the witness's previous answer.  I think the problem is "ultimately

 3     superior" and the witness was using the term the "second superior."

 4             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, in order to --

 5             JUDGE MOLOTO:  [Overlapping speakers] ... do you have a

 6     suggestion as to -- can you tell us what was intended to be the message?

 7             MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Maybe if the witness used an example

 8     to illustrate this, that would be convenient.

 9             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Okay.

10             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, just by way of an

11     example, I am a brigade commander.  The corps commander is my direct

12     superior.  My second superior is the army commander, and my third

13     superior is the chief, the General Staff of the VJ.  So I talked about

14     the second superior, in this case the army commander.  And the situation

15     is this, he gives me an order to carry out a certain assignment.  I will

16     carry out the assignment, nevertheless, I'm under an obligation to report

17     this to my direct superior, who in this case is the corps commander.

18             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you.  I understand.

19             MR. THOMAS:

20        Q.   And if we stay with the same example, General, let's say the

21     Chief of the General Staff of the VJ wished to order you as brigade

22     commander to do something, he would issue an order to the army commander,

23     who would pass on the order to the corps commander, who would pass on the

24     order to you; is that right?

25        A.   Yes, that's right, that would be the regular procedure.  But

Page 10705

 1     there is also a different parallel procedure applied in exceptional

 2     situations.

 3        Q.   Now can you tell us about that, sir.

 4        A.   If the needs of service allow or require a special interest and

 5     one cannot afford to wait, at that point in time in that unit one tracks

 6     down the Chief of the General Staff, and I have a brigade in mind, and he

 7     cannot wait for the corps commander to come and issue an order, that has

 8     to do with the organisation of life and work in that brigade, rather, he

 9     will be issuing a direct order, and I will be carrying it out.

10     Nevertheless, I'm under an obligation once I've carried out the order to

11     inform my direct superior, that being the corps commander.

12        Q.   All right.  General, you spoke last week about your particular

13     situation, namely that you were a VJ officer, but you were assigned to

14     work for a period of time in the MOD.  You told us that you were assigned

15     within the MOD to various positions by order of the minister of defence

16     or his appropriate delegate.  Do I understand your testimony correctly?

17        A.   Certainly, yes.

18        Q.   Okay.  You told us that after your time -- first of all, let me

19     just so that we are clear, while you were serving in the MOD you retained

20     your status as a VJ officer; is that right?

21        A.   No, I was assigned as an officer to the MOD, and my status in the

22     service was regulated by the Ministry of Defence.  At that moment I

23     entered the chain of command of the Ministry of Defence and I was out

24     from the chain of command of the General Staff of the VJ.

25        Q.   I'm not talking about chain of command for the moment, General.

Page 10706

 1     Did you remain a VJ officer while you were in the MOD?  Was your status

 2     that of a VJ officer?

 3        A.   Yes.

 4        Q.   So, for example, when you retired your years of pensionable

 5     service in the VJ included not just your time spent within the VJ, but

 6     also your time spent in the MOD; is that right?

 7        A.   Yes.

 8        Q.   Okay.  The order transferring you from the MOD to the VJ was

 9     issued by General Perisic, wasn't it?

10        A.   No.  I was transferred in 1984 on the order of the chief of

11     personnel administration of the SSNO who was in charge of this.

12        Q.   Just pause, General.  I think we have a miscommunication.  After

13     your time in the MOD, you were transferred, I think in 1995, to the

14     General Staff of the VJ; is that right?

15        A.   I apologise, but you first of all said from the General Staff to

16     the ministry, and I said upon whose order that was.  And this is the

17     second issue when I was transferred from the ministry to the General

18     Staff.  So which of these two situations would you like me to describe?

19        Q.   General, we had a translation error.  The question I want you

20     to -- the situation I want you to look at is that when you were

21     transferred from the MOD to the General Staff of the VJ in 1995.  This is

22     the situation we are talking about.  The operative document effecting

23     that transfer was an order issued by General Perisic, wasn't it?

24        A.   No.  But I can provide an answer in order to explain this.  The

25     Chief of General Staff of the VJ, General Perisic, requested an approval

Page 10707

 1     of the minister of defence for me to be assigned to the General Staff of

 2     the VJ.  The minister issued a written approval for me to be transferred

 3     from the ministry to the General Staff.  Pursuant to that approval, the

 4     chief of general took me over, entered me into his chain of command, and

 5     thus I became an officer of the VJ in the General Staff of the VJ.

 6        Q.   General, what you have not told us in that answer is by what

 7     formal document was this transfer effected?

 8        A.   This was a document issued by the minister of defence stating his

 9     approval for my assignment at the General Staff.  So it was the document

10     issued by the minister followed by the document issued by the Chief of

11     General Staff with which he regulated my position in the service.

12        Q.   All right.  So if we looked at your personnel file, in the time

13     that you were working at the MOD, your personnel file would show that

14     assignments to various positions were made by order of the minister; is

15     that right?

16        A.   Yes.

17        Q.   Are you saying that if we looked at your personnel file, your

18     assignment from the MOD to the General Staff of the VJ would be

19     attributed in your personnel file to an order of the minister of defence,

20     or would it be attributed to the order of General Perisic?

21        A.   No, without an order of the minister of defence, the Chief of the

22     General Staff could not have done it.

23        Q.   General, I understand that.  Listen to my question.  I understand

24     that approval of the minister was required.  Was the document formalising

25     the transfer the order issued by General Perisic?  Is that the formal

Page 10708

 1     order required for recognition of your transfer to the General Staff from

 2     the MOD?  Yes or no, sir?

 3        A.   I don't know whether it is the interpretation that is causing

 4     this misunderstanding, but as I said, without the document issued by the

 5     minister, General Perisic could not assign me to the General Staff.  I'm

 6     not sure if I'm making myself clear.

 7             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Let me ask a question here.  Sir --

 8             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Certainly, Your Honour.

 9             JUDGE MOLOTO:  You gave an answer, and I would like you to look

10     at the transcript on the -- if you can read it, page 32 --

11             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can't read English.

12             JUDGE MOLOTO:  All right.  Page 32, line 4, you said:

13             "This was a document issued by the minister of defence stating

14     his approval for my assignment at the General Staff.  So it was the

15     document issued by the minister followed by the document issued by the

16     Chief of the General Staff with which he regulated my position in the

17     service."  My question to you is:  What is the nature of this document by

18     the Chief of the General Staff that followed the minister's document, the

19     minister's approval?

20             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The document of the Chief of the

21     General Staff, Your Honour, has the form of an order; whereas, the

22     document issued by the minister of defence could be an order or a

23     decision, so these were the documents regulating assignments and statuses

24     in the service.

25             JUDGE MOLOTO:  And what did the Chief of the General Staff order?

Page 10709

 1             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The Chief of the General Staff

 2     wrote an order, or rather, that order was prepared by the personnel

 3     administration in order to determine my establishment --

 4             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Mr. Nikolic, we want to finish.  We know somebody

 5     prepares it, it's the order of the Chief of General Staff.  What did it

 6     say?

 7             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This was the order on assignment at

 8     the duty of the chief of administration for housing issues.

 9             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Sorry, this order is supposed to be dealing with

10     your transfer from the minister of defence to the VJ.  What did it order

11     you to do, sir?

12             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] As soon as I received the order on

13     assignment from the Chief of the General Staff, I had to report to the

14     duty at the General Staff.

15             JUDGE MOLOTO:  That is the document that triggered your move from

16     the Ministry of Defence to the VJ General Staff?

17             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, it wasn't triggered

18     because my situation in the service was already regulated.

19             JUDGE MOLOTO:  It was the last document that you had to get

20     before you left the Ministry of Defence?

21             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.

22             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Yes, Mr. Thomas.

23             MR. THOMAS:  Thank you, Your Honours.  I wonder, please, if we

24     could have P197 on the screen.  And particularly, Your Honours, I'm

25     looking at -- if I could just have a moment, sir.  Page 38 in the English

Page 10710

 1     and page 13 in the B/C/S.

 2        Q.   And, General, you will be familiar with this document.  It is the

 3     Law on the VJ.

 4        A.   Yes.  But I can't read this, the font is too small.

 5        Q.   All right.  General, I will read you the relevant provision.  I'm

 6     looking at Article 152, and subparagraph (5).  So it reads as follows:

 7             "The Chief of General Staff and the commanding officers of units

 8     or institutions designated by him shall:  Decide on the assignment of

 9     professional members of the army to duties outside the army, while

10     assignment to the Federal Ministry of Defence shall be carried out at the

11     request or with the approval of the federal minister of defence or a

12     commanding officer authorised by him."

13             You are familiar with this article?

14        A.   Yes.

15        Q.   And does this cover the situation that you have been -- that you

16     found yourself in?  In other words, that the transfers to and from the VJ

17     General Staff to the MOD were governed by this article?

18        A.   No, this is a reverse case.  In this case people were moved from

19     the General Staff to the MOD, and it discusses the authorities of the

20     Chief of General Staff and the commanding officers authorised by him.

21     Previously we discussed the contrary situation.  For example, if you

22     allow me --

23        Q.   Just pause, General.  No, I understand.  So there are two

24     situations contemplated here where there is assignment to the MOD, that

25     is with the approval of the minister of defence, and any other assignment

Page 10711

 1     outside the army does not require obviously the approval of the federal

 2     minister of defence, it is just done by the Chief of the General Staff or

 3     his delegates.  Am I right in my interpretation?

 4        A.   This was an exception made if somebody had to be assigned to the

 5     Federal Ministry of Defence.

 6             MR. THOMAS:  I want to move, please, to another article.  Article

 7     181 which is on page 45 of the English and page 16 of the B/C/S, please,

 8     Your Honours.

 9        Q.   I want to discuss, General, the situation as it relates to

10     discipline or the disciplining of individuals assigned outside the army.

11     You as someone who was assigned to the MOD was assigned outside the army

12     in accordance with Article 152 as we have just seen.  And your testimony

13     yesterday -- my apologies, last week, was that those assigned to the 30th

14     Personnel Centre and the 40th Personnel Centre were to be likened to

15     those transferred outside the army.

16             I want to begin, please, with Article 181.  If you had committed

17     a disciplinary offence while you were serving in the MOD, you told us

18     last week that it would be the federal minister of defence who was

19     responsible for disciplining you.  Do you I understand your evidence

20     correctly?

21        A.   Yes.

22        Q.   And that is on the basis of Article 181?

23        A.   Yes.

24        Q.   In respect of all other situations, it's the army commander or a

25     senior officer holding an equal or higher position under paragraph 2.  Am

Page 10712

 1     I reading the section correctly?

 2        A.   Yes, that's correct.

 3        Q.   I want to move, General, please to Article 177.

 4             MR. THOMAS:  Which is page 15 in the B/C/S, the same page in

 5     ours.

 6        Q.   And as that's coming, General, we don't need to look at them, but

 7     the Law on the VJ sets out a number of things which would constitute a

 8     disciplinary offence, doesn't it?

 9        A.   I apologise, but in the Law on the Army, there is a particular

10     provision dealing with offences.  Previously you spoke about disciplinary

11     responsibility though.

12        Q.   All right.  I will rephrase my question.  In the Law of the VJ

13     there are provisions which set out what constitutes disciplinary

14     offences?

15        A.   Yes.

16        Q.   All right.  We have Article 177 I think on the screen for you

17     now.  So if you could cast your eye over that.  This confirms that we

18     have within the VJ military disciplinary courts who are authorised to try

19     individuals for disciplinary offences.  And under Article 178, we see

20     where these military disciplinary courts are.  We have courts of first

21     instance established at the General Staff and at the commands of the

22     army, air force, and anti-defence and at the navy, and there is a higher

23     military disciplinary court at the General Staff.

24             MR. THOMAS:  I want to move, please, to Article 53 which is on

25     page 5 of the B/C/S, Your Honours, and on page 13 of the English.

Page 10713

 1        Q.   Before I ask you any questions about Article 53, General, was

 2     General Perisic required to discipline members or soldiers, officers

 3     assigned to the 30th Personnel Centre if they had committed any

 4     disciplinary offences while serving in the VRS?

 5        A.   No.

 6        Q.   All right.  I just want to explore that with you for a moment.

 7     Under Article 53, the second paragraph reads:

 8             "A professional officer or non-commissioned officer assigned

 9     outside the army shall have the same rights and duties of professional

10     officers and non-commissioned officers assigned to the army, unless

11     otherwise stipulated by this law."

12             Now, you are familiar with this provision.  I think in your

13     testimony you referred to the need to have soldiers assigned to the 30th

14     and 40th Personnel Centres acting in a professional way.  So Article 53

15     doesn't merely confer them the same rights, it also imposes upon them the

16     same duties.  Am I correct in my interpretation?

17        A.   The second paragraph, as you interpreted it, is not correct.  May

18     I provide an explanation?

19        Q.   No, I will ask you the question in another way, General.

20             Does a professional officer or non-commissioned officer assigned

21     outside the army have the same rights as a professional officer assigned

22     to the army?  Yes or no?

23        A.   Yes.

24        Q.   Does he also have the same duty?  Yes or no?

25        A.   Which duties are you referring to?

Page 10714

 1        Q.   Well, let's get to that.  My question is, looking at Article 53,

 2     sir, does he have the same duties as an officer in the army?

 3        A.   In this second paragraph of Article 53 when it says that they

 4     shall have the same rights and duties, the rights refers to the

 5     entitlements issuing from the service in the army, and duties refers to

 6     duties of professional officers, which they have as professionals.  So in

 7     relation to other citizens, they have different duties regarding their

 8     behaviour, military discipline, their attitude towards people and

 9     everything else, so they have to protect the honour of a military

10     officer.  So it is not the duty of, say, commanding over a certain unit.

11        Q.   I understand that, General.  The point is, those assigned outside

12     the army have the same duties as those in the army under Article 53,

13     don't they?

14        A.   No.  I just said what this duties refers to.

15        Q.   Just pause, General.  Just pause.  Article 53, second paragraph

16     contains one sentence.  This is what I'm talking about.  I'm not talking

17     about anything else except what this one article says, this one sentence

18     says.  You follow me?

19        A.   Yes, I do follow you.  Absolutely.

20        Q.   Do you agree with me that the sentence says that officers

21     assigned outside the army shall have the same duties as officers assigned

22     to the army?

23        A.   Yes, but the duties that I listed before.

24        Q.   General, it says the same duties as officers in the army.  You

25     must accept this, do you not?

Page 10715

 1        A.   No.

 2             MR. THOMAS:  All right.  Let's move, please, to Article 159,

 3     which is on page 39, Your Honours, of the English.

 4             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can't see that.

 5             MR. THOMAS:

 6        Q.   All right.  So we know from the provisions that there are

 7     disciplinary courts, that with the exception of the MOD the army

 8     commander or senior officer holding the same or equal or higher position

 9     is responsible for discipline in the army.  I want to go now to Article

10     159, which reads:

11             "A service member who violates military discipline, a service

12     member who violates military discipline in the performance of his service

13     or in connection with the performance of his service shall be held

14     responsible for disciplinary infractions or disciplinary offences."

15             Now, General, before I ask you any questions about this, let me

16     check that we agree on the interpretation of this provision.  Does this

17     provision mean that any service member, in other words anyone in service

18     in the VJ who violates military discipline, shall be held responsible; am

19     I right in my interpretation?

20        A.   Here we are talking about military service members who violate

21     military discipline in the performance of their service or in connection

22     with the performance of their service.  They shall be held responsible

23     for disciplinary infractions or disciplinary offences, so we are talking

24     about members of the military service.

25        Q.   So was the answer to my question yes, you agree with my

Page 10716

 1     interpretation?

 2        A.   With the explanation that I provided, yes.

 3        Q.   All right.  Well, I want to look finally then, please, at what

 4     constitutes service in the VJ, or members in service.

 5             MR. THOMAS:  And for that, please, we will go to Article 8, which

 6     is page 2 of the B/C/S and page 3, Your Honours, of the English.

 7        Q.   Now, the first line, let's look at Article 8, the first line is

 8     straightforward enough.  What I'm interested in is the second sentence of

 9     Article 8:

10             "Service in the army shall also include military and other duties

11     in the Federal Ministry of Defence."  Now, this was your situation,

12     wasn't it?

13        A.   Yes.

14        Q.   It shall also include military and other duties in any "other

15     state organ, company, or organisation performed by professional members

16     of the army assigned there by an order of an authorised officer

17     (hereinafter assignments outside the army)."

18             Am I correct in my interpretation that those assigned outside the

19     army in this way fall within the category of those who are performing

20     service in the army under Article 8?

21        A.   Esteemed Mr. Prosecutor, your question was couched in the

22     following terms:  Am I correct if my interpretation.  You merely read the

23     text contained in Article 8, but I'm yet to hear an interpretation.

24     Which article are you interpreting and in what sense?

25        Q.   All right.  Let me be more direct, General.  Under Article 8,

Page 10717

 1     somebody assigned outside the army nevertheless is to be considered as

 2     performing service in the army?

 3        A.   I'm yet to hear your question.  I didn't get a question, I'm

 4     sorry.  I do apologise.

 5        Q.   Apology accepted, sir.  Do you agree that officers assigned

 6     outside the army are considered under Article 8 to be performing service

 7     in the army of the VJ, yes or no?

 8        A.   No.

 9        Q.   Why does Article 8 not say that, sir?

10        A.   As far as I understand and as far as the interpretation that I

11     got --

12        Q.   Pause, pause.

13        A.   You said that --

14        Q.   Pause.  I'm asking you to confine your answer to what is written

15     in Article 8.  Under Article 8, service in the army includes military and

16     other duties performed by professional officers signed outside the army,

17     doesn't it?

18        A.   Yes.

19        Q.   All right.  Thank you, General.

20             MR. THOMAS:  Can we have Exhibit P2413 on the screen, please.

21             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] But not as an officer.

22             MR. THOMAS:

23        Q.   Sorry, General, just before we move on, what do you mean by "but

24     not as an officer"?

25        A.   Esteemed Mr. Prosecutor, the interpretation I got was you saying

Page 10718

 1     is that an officer of the army in a different army, or perhaps I

 2     misheard.  I may have -- well, perhaps a little, so when what we said

 3     comes out, when he is sent to another unit, to the VRS, he is a member of

 4     the VRS, a member of that force, yet he performs his function, his duty

 5     as an officer.  That is what the status of an officer means.  You get the

 6     status of an officer as soon as you are promoted to the rank of second

 7     lieutenant, so the meaning is that.

 8        Q.   General, nowhere in my question did I mention the VRS.  We will

 9     do this for as long as it takes, sir.  My question is this, please answer

10     it this time.  Service in the army also includes military and other

11     duties performed by professional members of the army assigned outside the

12     army?  Yes or no?

13        A.   Yes.

14        Q.   All right.

15             MR. THOMAS:  Can we move, please, to Exhibit P24 -- sorry, my

16     learned friend is on his feet, sir.

17             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Yes, Mr. Lukic.

18             MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I'm objecting because when Mr. Thomas

19     phrased this previous question and quoted Article 8, paragraph 2, he did

20     not finish reading what it says.  He has repeated several times outside

21     the army, yet he never quoted the entire article which says in the

22     federal Defence ministry and other federal organs and then a list of

23     what.

24             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Mr. Thomas.

25             MR. THOMAS:  Your Honour, I'm entitled to put to the witness

Page 10719

 1     whichever propositions I consider are necessary.  If my learned friend

 2     wishes to add anything else, he is perfectly entitled to in

 3     re-examination.

 4             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Objection overruled.

 5             MR. THOMAS:  Can we have, exhibit, please, 2413.  And let me just

 6     check, Your Honours, that can be done in open session.

 7        Q.   General, this is an order issued by General Perisic on the 9th of

 8     November --

 9        A.   May we please zoom in --

10             MR. THOMAS:  Excuse me, Your Honours.

11             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- I can't see it properly.  I see

12     it.  I don't see the signature though.

13             MR. THOMAS:  Can we scroll down, please, Mr. Registrar.  Can we

14     please also have the English on the screen for Their Honours.

15        Q.   General, what we see is an order from General Perisic dated the

16     9th of November, 1995, following the fall of the Krajina and Operation

17     Storm, which occurred in August 1995.  You will see that the order is

18     issued with the aim of establishing responsibility and solving status and

19     service for professional soldiers of the Yugoslav Army who served in the

20     40th Personnel Centre.  Now, in this context, General, are we talking

21     about the soldiers who went and fought in the SVK?

22        A.   Yes.

23        Q.   All right.  You will see that the order is for assistant chiefs

24     of the General Staff to study official assessments, statements, and other

25     material regarding all officers of the 40th Personnel Centre that fall

Page 10720

 1     within their responsibility, and it sets out a number of proposals

 2     dealing with those individuals.  My question again, sir, is that in this

 3     context we are talking about the officers who went and fought in the SVK,

 4     aren't we?

 5             JUDGE MOLOTO:  How many times do you want to ask that question

 6     before you are satisfied, sir?

 7             MR. THOMAS:  Well, sir, it's mentioned twice in the document.  I

 8     just wanted to make sure that we are reading it the right way both times.

 9             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. Prosecutor, you asked if this

10     was in relation to the members of the 40th Personnel Centre or persons

11     who were handled by the 40th Personnel Centre and were in the SVK, so the

12     answer to your question would be yes.

13             MR. THOMAS:

14        Q.   Thank you, General.

15             MR. THOMAS:  Your Honours, at this point if I could just have a

16     moment, Your Honours.

17        Q.   You will see, General, a number of measures that are set out in

18     this document, but do you agree that these are effectively the

19     commencement of disciplinary measures against certain individuals?

20        A.   Before I answer the question, may I ask an additional one myself?

21        Q.   Just pause, General.

22        A.   I --

23        Q.   Unfortunately, you cannot.  My question is a straightforward one,

24     sir.  Are the measures set out in this order effectively the precursor to

25     or commencement of disciplinary action being taken against certain

Page 10721

 1     individuals?  Yes or no?

 2        A.   Yes, but, if you don't mind, I would like to provide an

 3     additional answer.

 4        Q.   Please do, sir.

 5        A.   I'm looking at the date here, specifically the date this document

 6     was produced.  The 40th Personnel Centre is, in practical terms,

 7     abolished following Operation Storm and Operation Flash.  The members of

 8     the SVK who were handled by the 40th Personnel Centre had nowhere to go.

 9     They were displaced and arrived as refugees in the FRY.  If you put

10     things into that kind of perspective, the chief of General Staff must

11     have had something in mind to the effect that those persons have

12     committed infractions on military discipline and who on earth would try

13     them there unless they were now back home to their place of origin, to

14     gain their livelihood again.  But that was after the fall of the Republic

15     of Serbian Krajina and the abolishment of the 40th Personnel Centre.

16        Q.   I understand, General, and so do we agree that these actions set

17     out in this order are being taken in respect of possible disciplinary

18     offences which occurred while they were fighting in the SVK?

19        A.   Yes, again with the following proviso.

20        Q.   Carry on.

21        A.   These persons asked to gain entry to the chain of command of the

22     VJ.  In that case, the General Staff was supposed to take appropriate

23     measures if there was any information indicating that there had been

24     infractions of military discipline.  These people had nowhere to go.

25     They asked for appointments to that army.  My personal opinion, and

Page 10722

 1     that's all it is, an interpretation of this article would be that.  I was

 2     not myself involved in actually producing this document because I was at

 3     the time head of the system and status-related issues administration.

 4        Q.   All right, thank you, General.

 5             MR. THOMAS:  Your Honours, there a number of documents which fall

 6     into category which require some discussion before I can use them or not

 7     use them with General Nikolic.  Can I suggest that the general leave the

 8     courtroom so that we can discuss those documents.

 9             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Mr. Nikolic, would you please just excuse us.

10     Apparently there's something that the lawyers want to talk about but in

11     your absence.  We'll call you once we are ready.

12                           [The witness stands down]

13             MR. THOMAS:  Thank you, Your Honour.  I have a number of

14     documents, not many, but several documents which I would like to use with

15     General Nikolic for the purpose of establishing bias.  They fall into

16     three categories.  The first two documents relate to proceedings and an

17     indictment issued against General Nikolic in Serbia for favourable

18     treatment of a general in the allocation of housing.  The documents

19     concern an indictment and a ruling on appeal brought against the bringing

20     of indictment by General Nikolic.  So these are two documents which would

21     establish that he faces charges for abuse of official position which

22     resulted in another general receiving housing to which he was not

23     entitled.  Those proceedings have not been determined because General

24     Pavkovic is also a co-accused, and the proceedings have been suspended

25     until the resolution of General Pavkovic's trial here.

Page 10723

 1             The second group of documents concerns General Nikolic's

 2     membership of an organisation known as the Serbian General and Admiral's

 3     Club.  The documents concern, first of all, demonstrate his membership of

 4     that club.  They express -- there is a page that is essentially a motto

 5     or a declaration about the importance of officers to an army.  There is a

 6     work-plan which includes a clause to say that the club shall continue to

 7     provide --

 8             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Don't read it yet.

 9             MR. THOMAS:  There's a work-plan.  There is a code of ethics of

10     which I want -- wish to cite one article, and there are two press

11     releases relating to the decision of this Court in the Haradinaj case,

12     which in the Prosecution's submission may contain statements showing a

13     particular attitude towards the Tribunal and a particular attitude

14     towards the activities or the position the Serb generals find themselves

15     in.

16             The third -- effectively, sir, those documents show, in the

17     Prosecution's submission, a bias against the Tribunal and a bias towards

18     Serb officers who fought in the Bosnian conflict.

19             The final document, sir, is a record of a meeting.

20             JUDGE MOLOTO:  When you say "a bias towards Serb officers who

21     fought in the Bosnian conflict," you mean a favourable bias in favour of

22     them?

23             MR. THOMAS:  Yes, sir.  I won't go into the documents because you

24     haven't asked me to, but I can do so if Your Honours require more

25     particular expression.

Page 10724

 1             JUDGE MOLOTO:  I don't think you should do so until such time as

 2     a ruling is made because otherwise then you are putting them on evidence.

 3             MR. THOMAS:  Yes, I understand.  The third document, sir, the

 4     third category is a single document, it's a record of the collegium, a

 5     meeting between members of the General Staff of the VJ and generals of

 6     the 30th Personnel Centre in September 2000.  The purpose of the meeting

 7     was to discuss ongoing training for VRS officers but in the context of

 8     that meeting, various -- at which General Nikolic was present, various

 9     statements are made regarding or relevant to the harbouring of fugitives

10     by the VRS and by the VJ.  And the relevance of that document would be to

11     establish General Nikolic's at least awareness that this was a -- that

12     this activity was occurring.

13             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Are you done?

14             MR. THOMAS:  Yes, sir, thank you.

15             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Mr. Lukic.

16             MR. GUY-SMITH:  Yes, with regard to a response as it relates to

17     the first set of documents, could we go into private session.

18             JUDGE MOLOTO:  May the Chamber please move into private session.

19                           [Private session]

20   (redacted)

21   (redacted)

22   (redacted)

23   (redacted)

24   (redacted)

25   (redacted)

Page 10725

 1   (redacted)

 2   (redacted)

 3   (redacted)

 4   (redacted)

 5   (redacted)

 6   (redacted)

 7   (redacted)

 8   (redacted)

 9   (redacted)

10   (redacted)

11   (redacted)

12   (redacted)

13   (redacted)

14   (redacted)

15   (redacted)

16   (redacted)

17   (redacted)

18   (redacted)

19                           [Open session]

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

21             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you.  Yes.

22             MR. GUY-SMITH:  Above and beyond the representations that were

23     made in private session as regards to this particular issue, I believe

24     that the threshold has been established for purposes of the issue of

25     impeachment should the Chamber make a determination that such evidence

Page 10726

 1     should be pursued.  So I'm dealing with the threshold issue because I

 2     think that's one of the issues we need to deal with.

 3             With regard to the second sets of documents, I think that there's

 4     an underlying problem with the manner in which Mr. Thomas has suggested

 5     that the impeachment occur in the event that he asks those direct

 6     questions from the witness with regard to the witness's bias or lack

 7     thereof concerning the Tribunal either for or against, and concerning

 8     Serb generals either for or against, and he receives an answer which is

 9     contradictory to that which he finds to be contained in these document,

10     then he may well be in a position to use those documents for impeachment

11     purposes.  But the issue of that particular issue of bias has not yet

12     been tested.  There is an underlying problem here which is in the absence

13     of there being some adoption by the witness concerning the informations

14     contained in these documents, there's an associational travelling problem

15     which we would normally call an associational guilt problem, but it

16     wouldn't be a guilt situation since obviously we are not dealing with the

17     issue of guilt, but rather, it's as if one is a part of an organisation

18     or part of a group each and everything in that group publishes is adopted

19     by all in the group.  I suggest to the Chamber that a more appropriate

20     way of dealing with this particular issue, as it relates to the issue of

21     bias, and I have a secondary problem with that, but as it relates to the

22     issue of bias be directly dealt with between question and answer by

23     Mr. Thomas and the witness.  He can ask the witness direct questions with

24     regard to the witness's feel about the Tribunal.  He can ask direct

25     questions with regard to the witness's feelings about how the Tribunal

Page 10727

 1     has treated previous individuals who have appeared before this Tribunal

 2     who happen to be Serb generals.

 3             JUDGE MOLOTO:  I have a problem with that problem that you have,

 4     Mr. Guy-Smith.  My problem is that I don't think it is for the Chamber to

 5     define or even for the Defence to define the limits within which the

 6     Prosecution may ask its questions.  We must agree, either the Defence

 7     objects to the use of those documents because they don't meet the

 8     requirements or if you say they may be used, then --

 9             MR. GUY-SMITH:  I understand your thinking, Your Honour.  And

10     with your thinking in mind, the Defence objects to the use of these

11     documents.

12             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Then you must address the question of threshold,

13     how it has not been met.

14             MR. GUY-SMITH:  The issue of threshold has not been met because

15     he has failed to establish that these documents are documents that would,

16     in fact, achieve the purpose for which they are sought to be introduced.

17             JUDGE MOLOTO:  But you don't know that until they have been put

18     to the test.

19             MR. GUY-SMITH:  Well, this is one of those unfortunate

20     tautological situations that one finds themselves in.  It occurs

21     periodically in a trial, and I find myself in one of those now.

22             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Does that argument address the question of

23     requirements of a threshold?

24             MR. GUY-SMITH:  Well, you know I'm not one to avoid a direct

25     question.

Page 10728

 1             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Don't avoid this one.

 2             MR. GUY-SMITH:  And I don't intend to, which is why I'm saying

 3     you know that I'm not one to avoid a direct question.  I believe that the

 4     manner in which Mr. Thomas has made the presentation, he does meet the

 5     threshold.  Although, I have difficulties, I have difficulties, as I've

 6     articulated, with --

 7             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Those are the difficulties outside the threshold.

 8             MR. GUY-SMITH:  Understood.  Understood.

 9             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Do you have any comments on the fact category?

10             MR. GUY-SMITH:  I'm getting to the third category right now.  If

11     I could have a moment again.

12                           [Defence counsel confer]

13             MR. GUY-SMITH:  The third set -- I apologise.

14             JUDGE MOLOTO:  No, go ahead.

15             MR. GUY-SMITH:  The third set of documents poses a somewhat of a

16     slightly different legal analysis than that which is contained in the

17     first two, because part of the legal analysis falls into some of the

18     matters that are actually charged within the indictment itself.  I notice

19     we are very close to the break.  If we could take the break now so I can

20     formulate a short pithy response as regards to the third set, I would

21     appreciate that.

22             JUDGE MOLOTO:  We'll take a break and come back at half past

23     12.00.  Court adjourned.

24                           --- Recess taken at 12.01 p.m.

25                           --- On resuming at 12.32 p.m.

Page 10729

 1             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Yes, Mr. Guy-Smith.

 2             MR. GUY-SMITH:  At page 49 from lines 1 through 7, Mr. Thomas has

 3     indicated -- actually it starts at the page before, has indicated the

 4     reason why he wishes to use this particular information and he says, and

 5     I quote:

 6             "And the relevance of that document would be to establish General

 7     Nikolic's at least awareness that this was, that this activity was

 8     occurring."

 9             Looking at the standards that are to be applied here, first of

10     all, even as a threshold matter independent of the issues that are

11     normally discussed with regard to fresh evidence and understanding the

12     Chamber may well be more lenient as it relates to impeachment evidence,

13     the offer made by Mr. Thomas with regard to the issue of why he wishes to

14     use this evidence does not give rise to an issue of impeachment in the

15     first instance.

16             So with regard to the Defence position our first position is that

17     he has failed to make any threshold with regard to the issue of

18     impeachment.  He also has failed to, at this point in time by virtue of

19     the fact where we stand in the case, that being it's after the close of

20     the Prosecution's case, he has failed to meet the requirements of 89 --

21     Rule 89 with regard to this issue being probative on the issue of, and

22     that's what we are referring to here, probative on the issue of

23     credibility.

24             In addition, the document that I believe he wishes to rely upon

25     is XN 59, and I want to make sure that I'm correct in that regard before

Page 10730

 1     I go any further, so just a quick nod would be appreciated.  Thank you.

 2     The document, at least the translation that I have, indicates on the

 3     front page that it is unauthorised and not language edited audio

 4     recording of discussions.  So there is another issue with regard to

 5     reliance on this document as it relates to what, assuming for purpose of

 6     discussion that there's any probative value whatsoever, as to what was

 7     said, who said what, and whether or not we have any basis to be able to

 8     deal with its authenticity.  Once again a question under Rule 89.

 9             And finally, I think that in the manner in which Mr. Thomas

10     suggests he wishes to use the document, that being relevance of the

11     witness's awareness that something was afoot, he fails to take into

12     account and he fails to make the representation, and I doubt he seriously

13     would be questioning the witness with regard to the state of the law at

14     that time, the law that the witness would necessarily have to follow with

15     regard to the general issue.  We would object on all of those grounds.

16             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Mr. Thomas.

17             MR. THOMAS:  Sir, in my submissions I said that this goes to show

18     at least that General Nikolic was aware that fugitives and potential

19     fugitives, we are talking about more than one, were being harboured.

20     Implicit in that is that any inaction on the part of General Nikolic when

21     faced with this knowledge or when provided with this knowledge is

22     relevant to any reasons that he might have for taking no action.  For

23     example, his bias, his sympathies towards those who are being hidden.

24             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Did he have any duty to take any action?

25             MR. THOMAS:  He may have as a human being, his country is a party

Page 10731

 1     to the genocide convention.  His party is a statute to the statute of the

 2     Tribunal.

 3             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Yeah, but --

 4             MR. THOMAS:  The sympathies that he may have, Your Honour,

 5     demonstrate a lack of interest in assisting the Tribunal.  This was

 6     something that was aired freely at a meeting between the highest officers

 7     in the VRS and the highest officers of the VJ of which he was a part.

 8     And this goes to his -- its relevant to the sensibilities of those who

 9     were present.

10             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Is he not a retired person now?

11             MR. THOMAS:  This was at a time when he was not retired, sir,

12     this meeting.

13             JUDGE MOLOTO:  You characterise his duty as more of a civic duty

14     rather than his duty by virtue of his position in the army, sir.

15             MR. THOMAS:  The difficulty, sir, is that we don't know what

16     steps, he took, if any.  I need to confront him with the fact that he is

17     aware of this.

18             JUDGE MOLOTO:  The question is I am a step behind you, you are a

19     Step ahead.

20             MR. THOMAS:  Yes.

21             JUDGE MOLOTO:  My question is whether he did have a duty to take

22     any step, because you sound like you characterise his duty as more of a

23     civic duty, and are you saying that by virtue of being a general in the

24     army, he had a duty to act?

25             MR. THOMAS:  Yes, he did, sir, because the army as an organ of

Page 10732

 1     the state of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was required to turn over

 2     criminals who had been, or alleged criminals indicted by the Tribunal.

 3     They are required to comply.

 4             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Yeah, but is that the army or the police?

 5             MR. THOMAS:  Well, it's anybody who is responsible for

 6     complying -- maybe I should put it another way.

 7             JUDGE MOLOTO:  That's not my question.  Whether he bore that duty

 8     to comply.

 9             MR. THOMAS:  The army was hiding people.  The bottom line, sir,

10     is that this document shows that the army, the VRS.

11             JUDGE MOLOTO:  The VRS.

12             MR. THOMAS:  The VRS was hiding people with the knowledge of the

13     General Staff of the VJ.

14             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Right.

15             MR. THOMAS:  The -- and this demonstrates, Your Honours, that

16     everyone is aware of the situation that exists.  Everyone is aware that

17     there is a requirement to turn these people over because these people are

18     being hidden.

19             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Now, your argument is going a little further away

20     from the point, in fact.  When you are still giving me the impression

21     that it was the VJ which did it, I thought you were closer to it.  Now if

22     it is the VRS that does it and the VJ is aware of it, who is not aware of

23     it?  We are all aware of it, but what have we done about it?

24             MR. THOMAS:  Part of the difficulty, sir, is that we are

25     discussing the contents of the document without being allowed to discuss

Page 10733

 1     the contents of the document.

 2             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Well, we are discussing your submissions.  Your

 3     submissions are that at the time he attended this meeting, the VRS was

 4     hiding fugitives.

 5             MR. THOMAS:  Yes.

 6             JUDGE MOLOTO:  The VJ was aware that the VRS is hiding fugitives,

 7     and you are saying that he had a duty.  My question is under those

 8     circumstances, what duty lay on him?

 9             MR. THOMAS:  I should add one more dimension, sir, and that is

10     that the discussion also involves Mladic which means that the -- it's not

11     just the VRS who are hiding.  It may be that the document itself is not

12     clear in terms of Mladic, whether we are talking about the VJ hiding him

13     or the VRS hiding him, we are talking about co-operation between the VRS

14     and the VJ with his security detail.

15             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Now, I have serious problems with your

16     submissions, Mr. Thomas.  You are shifting the goal-posts.  It's no

17     longer knowledge, now it's co-operation between the VJ, and it is also no

18     longer the VRS, it could be the VRS and the VJ.  I'm not quite sure where

19     your argument is going now.

20             MR. THOMAS:  That's the difficulty, sir, with not being able to

21     refer to the document.

22             JUDGE MOLOTO:  You may not refer to the document until it is

23     admitted, but you've got to make your argument outside the document, and

24     stay with your argument.  Don't shift around.

25             MR. THOMAS:  I understand.  First of all, the General Nikolic is

Page 10734

 1     a professional officer in the Yugoslav Army.

 2             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Right.

 3             MR. THOMAS:  The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was under an

 4     obligation to turn over alleged fugitives, certainly under an obligation

 5     to turn over indicted individuals, which Mladic was one.  He would have

 6     been aware that steps taken by the General Staff of the VJ or the General

 7     Staff of the VRS --

 8             JUDGE MOLOTO:  No, but it is the General Staff of the VJ, or is

 9     it the General Staff of the VRS?

10             MR. THOMAS:  On Mladic, it's co-operation between the two, it's

11     intelligence share, it's information sharing.  That is the reference to

12     Mladic in this document.  It is information sharing.  In relation to the

13     others, sir, it is the problem of housing being provided for members of

14     the 30th Personnel Centre, and you will recall that General Nikolic was

15     responsible for housing.

16             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Those first two categories, if I understood

17     Mr. Guy-Smith, he has considered those two.  It is the third category,

18     sir, that we are talking about.  So the question of housing doesn't seem

19     to come in here.  It's the question of being at the least aware of

20     fugitives being hidden away.

21             MR. THOMAS:  The problem with the fugitives being hidden away is

22     that they needed housing.  That was the problem.  This is the context in

23     which the discussion takes place in this document, so the VRS are asking

24     the VJ to resolve the housing problem for all of their officers including

25     those who they are hiding.

Page 10735

 1             JUDGE MOLOTO:  You see again, now there's another shift of the

 2     goal-post.  Now you are implying that he actively participated in the

 3     hiding of the fugitives by providing them with housing.

 4             MR. THOMAS:  I don't know if he did that.

 5             JUDGE MOLOTO:  I am not sure why do you link housing now, which

 6     was in the first category, why do you link it with the third category

 7     now?

 8             MR. THOMAS:  Because, Your Honour, that's the context in which --

 9             JUDGE MOLOTO:  That was not the context of your first -- if you

10     are --

11             MR. THOMAS:  I was trying not to disclose the contents of the

12     document, Your Honour.  I was trying to be very general about what the

13     essential points of the document are which was that it dealt with the

14     harbouring of fugitives.  This was something that he was necessarily --

15             JUDGE MOLOTO:  But, sir, but, sir, even if you were not -- you

16     are trying not to disclose the contents, where you say -- let me quote

17     you.  What line was that, Guy-Smith, at page 49?

18             MR. GUY-SMITH:  Yes, Your Honour.  Page 49.  The specific line is

19     line 5 -- and the relevance of that document would be to establish

20     General Nikolic's at least awareness that this was, this was the activity

21     that was occurring.

22             JUDGE MOLOTO:  What line is it?

23             MR. GUY-SMITH:  It starts on line 5 is what I just read to you.

24             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Okay.  Right, now, when you made that statement if

25     you then have been able to say that demonstrates that, in fact, he

Page 10736

 1     assisted in providing housing for these people, or he assisted in the

 2     hiding of the fugitives, not just awareness.

 3             MR. THOMAS:  But I understand Your Honours's point, but the

 4     difficulty, sir, is that at the moment I know nothing about what General

 5     Nikolic did or did not do.

 6             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Then you are going on a fishing expedition.

 7             MR. THOMAS:  I want to put to him, sir, that at the very least

 8     this was an open topic of discussion in the General Staff.

 9             JUDGE MOLOTO:  I'm sure it must be an open topic of discussion

10     everywhere, all over Serbia and all over the world, everybody is aware

11     that these guys are fugitives, that they're being hidden by some people,

12     and that nobody seems to be getting hold of them.

13             MR. THOMAS:  Well, in my submission it's relevant that the

14     General Staff knows that they are not being hidden by anybody.  They are

15     being hidden by the VRS.  They are being hidden by members of the 30th

16     Personnel Centre.

17             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Indeed.  So they may know who is hiding them, what

18     must they do?  Go over to the Republika Srpska and grab them from the

19     VRS?  I'm not quite sure what your argument is on this point.

20             MR. THOMAS:  My argument is no more, sir, then it demonstrates a

21     preparedness to go along with not assisting the Tribunal and that that

22     demonstrates a particular bias of this witness.  So when Your Honours

23     have to determine whether the witness is being truthful with you on a

24     particular point, you are entitled to take into account the fact that he

25     is pretty ambivalent about whether or not fugitives, for example, are

Page 10737

 1     turned over.

 2             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Sure, but my problem is that an individual officer

 3     in the army, I fail to see how an individual officer in the army has a

 4     duty to do something about fugitives who are at large.

 5             MR. THOMAS:  Well, his -- under the Law of the Army, he is

 6     required to -- he is required to observe international conventions.  He

 7     is required to observe International Humanitarian Law.  His nation is

 8     required as a party to this statute to turn over individuals.

 9             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Right.

10             MR. THOMAS:  He knows that there is a positive obligation to --

11             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Of the institution.

12             MR. THOMAS:  Yes, but also as an army officer, if he takes steps

13     or fails to take steps which allow his country to breach its

14     international obligations or result in the army breaching some obligation

15     then that has to be at the very least conduct unbecoming an officer in

16     some respect.

17             JUDGE MOLOTO:  And what do we expect him to do, if I may just

18     ask?

19             MR. THOMAS:  He may have done something, he may have done

20     nothing.

21             JUDGE MOLOTO:  I'm asking you what would you expect a reasonable

22     officer of the army to do under those circumstances where he doesn't bear

23     the duty within, he is within the structure, but you are saying he is

24     expected to observe International Humanitarian Law.  He happens to be

25     aware that another army in the next-door country is harbouring a

Page 10738

 1     fugitive, what do you expect him to do?

 2             MR. THOMAS:  This army is at a meeting with him and others from

 3     the General Staff asking for assistance with housing, regulating

 4     personnel with training.  He could say, look, this is bad for us to be

 5     doing this for you when you are harbouring people.  We are not going to

 6     do it.  That's one thing.

 7             JUDGE MOLOTO:  I've told you my problem with that argument

 8     because that came as an extension later, as a shifting of the goal-posts,

 9     so I'm not quite sure, you know.

10             MR. THOMAS:  I understand, Your Honour's point.

11             JUDGE MOLOTO:  That's my problem, it was not part of your

12     original argument.

13             MR. THOMAS:  Well, I thought it was implicit, sir.  He knew at

14     least what I want to ask him is, you know, what he did with this

15     knowledge.  I can't say until I put to him what he can say in relation to

16     that.  But I can't take the matter any further, Your Honours.

17             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you.  I'm not quite sure whether you have

18     addressed all the other requirements.

19             MR. THOMAS:  I can do that, Your Honour.  On the question of, I

20     think my learned friend suggested that it needs to be probative on the

21     issue of credibility, my answer to that, sir, is that essentially it's

22     demonstrating a bias either against the Tribunal or in favour of Serb

23     soldiers or Serb officers who may have been considered by this Tribunal

24     to become --

25             JUDGE MOLOTO:  I've heard you on that one.  I just wanted to --

Page 10739

 1     there are a whole lot of requirements that must be addressed before fresh

 2     evidence can be tendered.

 3             MR. THOMAS:  Yes, sir.

 4             JUDGE MOLOTO:  And I'm now talking generally about all three

 5     categories, time when you got it, all those.

 6             MR. THOMAS:  Yes, sir.  I think indicate that the disclosure

 7     information I have in relation to the charges and information relating to

 8     the housing charges against General Nikolic were disclosed to the Defence

 9     on the 2nd of February.

10             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Which year?

11             MR. THOMAS:  This year.  As soon as we became aware that General

12     Nikolic was going to be called as a witness, the necessary searches were

13     undertaken, sir.  That revealed this information, and that was disclosed

14     on the 2nd of February of this year.

15             The material from the general and admiral's club again was

16     translated as soon as it was obtained in response to General Nikolic

17     being on the list.  And this was on the 19th of February with the

18     exception of one document, which was the list of officers of the club,

19     which was disclosed to the Defence on the 26th of February.

20             And the document that we are currently talking about, sir, the

21     minutes of the -- or the record of the meeting between the General Staff

22     and the VRS Main Staff was disclosed on the 11th of February this year.

23     Thank you.

24             JUDGE MOLOTO:  I hate to be leading you, and I don't believe you

25     have exhausted your argument -- the requirements.

Page 10740

 1             MR. THOMAS:  I've been passed a note, sir, that the disclosure

 2     material was sent on e-court and CD-ROM.  It was all on CD-ROM on the

 3     dates that I've referred to, sir, and subsequently uploaded into e-court.

 4             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Okay.  Thank you.

 5             Any response, Mr. Guy-Smith?

 6             MR. GUY-SMITH:  Only one very brief response.  Mr. Thomas said in

 7     relationship to this discussion, "I can't say until I put it to him what

 8     he can say in relation to that," that's what we classically know as a

 9     fishing expedition.  That's not impeachment.  Submitted.

10                           [Trial Chamber confers]

11             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Mr. Thomas, you may use the first two documents

12     referring to the first two categories and not the third one.

13             MR. THOMAS:  Thank you, Your Honours.

14             JUDGE MOLOTO:  The witness might be brought in.  Sorry.

15                           [The witness takes the stand]

16             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Mr. Nikolic, the Chamber apologises for keeping

17     you outside for so long.  Unfortunately it's one of those things that do

18     happen in this kind of work.  I hope you don't take it on us.

19             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I fully understand the need for

20     that, Your Honour.

21             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you so much.  Thank you for understanding.

22   (redacted)

23   (redacted)

24   (redacted)

25   (redacted)

Page 10741

 1   (redacted)

 2   (redacted)

 3   (redacted)

 4   (redacted)

 5   (redacted)

 6   (redacted)

 7                           [Private session]

 8   (redacted)

 9   (redacted)

10   (redacted)

11   (redacted)

12   (redacted)

13   (redacted)

14   (redacted)

15   (redacted)

16   (redacted)

17   (redacted)

18   (redacted)

19   (redacted)

20   (redacted)

21   (redacted)

22   (redacted)

23   (redacted)

24   (redacted)

25   (redacted)

Page 10742











11 Pages 10742-10749 redacted. Private session.















Page 10750

 1   (redacted)

 2   (redacted)

 3   (redacted)

 4   (redacted)

 5   (redacted)

 6   (redacted)

 7   (redacted)

 8   (redacted)

 9   (redacted)

10   (redacted)

11   (redacted)

12                           [Open session]

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

14             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you very much, Mr. Registrar.

15             Yes, Mr. Thomas.

16             MR. THOMAS:  Thank you, Your Honours.

17        Q.   General, just one other topic that I wanted to deal with you

18     briefly.  What is the general and admiral's club of the army of Serbia?

19        A.   As in most countries across the world, we in Serbia our decision

20     of the defence minister Davinic established a general and admiral's club.

21     This is a non-party association.  It is an association of citizens with

22     no political affiliations whatsoever or indeed any interference in the

23     members officials lives.  It is, as I said, a non-party association.

24             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Sorry, Mr. Nikolic.  You say it's an association

25     of citizens.  Any citizen can become a member, or is it only generals and

Page 10751

 1     admirals?

 2             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, this is an association

 3     of citizens but in a restricted professional field.

 4             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you.

 5             Mr. Thomas.

 6             MR. THOMAS:

 7        Q.   And in this case, we are talking about officers in the army and

 8     navy of the VJ; is that right?

 9        A.   No.  The generals and admirals of the VJ and navy too, because

10     that is part of the army.  It is a special branch.

11        Q.   Okay.  And the work-plan of the club includes that it shall, that

12     is the club, shall continue to provide necessary assistance to

13     individuals on request related to their status, and their obligations

14     with respect to international organisations and institutions, and with

15     respect to the institutions in the country starting out from the state

16     interests of the Republic of Serbia and realistic abilities of the club.

17     Have I understood that section of the work-plan correctly?

18        A.   Given the fact that I don't have the statute in front of me, I

19     can hardly be expected to interpret what you are saying.  If you can

20     provide a hard copy, I'd be glad to discuss it.  For the time being I

21     just don't have it.  The statute was adopted by the Assembly as the

22     supreme body of that association.

23        Q.   General, are you a member of the executive board of that club?

24        A.   Used to be the executive council and now it's the executive

25     board, yes.

Page 10752

 1        Q.   Can I ask you if you agree with the following statement:  The

 2     Hague Tribunal is not a Tribunal but a skillfully packed incrimination of

 3     justice that decides who is to be sentenced and how the justice is to be

 4     served.  Do you agree with that statement, sir?

 5        A.   No.  If I agreed with that statement, I certainly wouldn't be

 6     sitting here today.

 7        Q.   Do you agree with the statement that the Tribunal is controlled

 8     from within through expert insiders that are used as instruments for

 9     keeping the scope of investigations under control?

10        A.   No.

11        Q.   Do you agree with the following statement:  By acting in this

12     way, the Court got rid of the war criminal and terrorist Ramush Haradinaj

13     due to insufficient evidence because the truth was not supposed to be

14     revealed.

15        A.   I have no right to comment on any convictions and sentences

16     before this Tribunal.  Therefore, I simply don't do that.

17        Q.   Do you agree with the following statement:  The Federal Republic

18     of Yugoslavia did something not a single other country has ever done.

19     The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia extradited to the International

20     Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia the following persons:  Its

21     president, the president of the Republic of Serbia, deputy prime minister

22     of the federal government, minister of defence, two chiefs of the General

23     Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia, one army commander, and deputy minister

24     of the interior.  They were extradited only because they had carried out

25     their duty in a professional manner pursuant to a constitution of a

Page 10753

 1     sovereign state.  The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia then defended their

 2     country from terrorism/separatism and from the NATO aggression.  Do you

 3     agree with that statement?

 4        A.   Mr. Prosecutor, there were too many sentences in this for me to

 5     answer.  Can we take it one step at a time?  Who said it, whose statement

 6     is it?

 7        Q.   All right.  This is a press release that appeared on your

 8     website, that is the club of which you are on the executive board, the

 9     general and admiral's club of the Republic of Serbia, following the

10     decision in the Haradinaj case.  First of all, that answers your first

11     question.  That is the source of these statements.

12        A.   Your Honours, never was I president of the executive board of the

13     club.  Never.

14             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Yes, Mr. Lukic.

15             MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] [No interpretation]

16             JUDGE MOLOTO:  I got no translation.  I don't know whether

17     anybody has.

18             MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I heard the interpretation into

19     Serbian of the question posed by Mr. Thomas that he was president of the

20     executive board, and this is what prompted this answer by Mr. Lukic.

21     Although, the issue that he was president was actually never raised by

22     Mr. Thomas.

23             JUDGE MOLOTO:  And the entire speech that you made now as you

24     stood up a second time you made while the interpreter was talking, so I

25     was hearing two people at the same time, so I missed out on the first

Page 10754

 1     part of that statement.  Of course I can read what the -- I don't know

 2     who was being transcribed, whether you or her.  I see it's the

 3     interpreter who was being transcribed.

 4             What were you saying, Mr. Lukic, when you stood up now the second

 5     time?

 6             MR. LUKIC:  Your Honour, Mr. Thomas mentioned like in the

 7     transcript that Mr. Nikolic was in executive board, page 77, and we heard

 8     in B/C/S and Mr. Nikolic too that he was the president of executive

 9     board.  And that's why he made that kind of answer.

10             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you so much.  Can we just get that

11     interpretation corrected to the witness so that he can give you an

12     appropriate answer, Mr. Thomas?

13             MR. THOMAS:  I can do that, sir.

14        Q.   General, you asked me the source of these statements that I've

15     been putting to you.  The source of these statements is the website for

16     the general and admiral's club of the Republic of Serbia.  That is the

17     source.

18        A.   Thank you for this source.  Could you please tell me who signed

19     this text?

20        Q.   No, I cannot, sir.  It appears on your website.  But let me ask

21     you this question:  Do you agree with the statement that I've read out?

22        A.   No, not entirely.

23        Q.   With which parts do you disagree?

24        A.   Since I can't read English, could you please repeat what you

25     said.

Page 10755

 1        Q.   Okay.  FRY Yugoslavia did something not a single other country

 2     has ever done.  FRY -- Federal Republic of Yugoslavia extradited to the

 3     International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia the following

 4     persons:  Its president, the president of the Republic of Serbia, deputy

 5     prime minister of the federal government, minister of defence, two chiefs

 6     of the General Staff of the Army of Yugoslavia, one army commander, and

 7     deputy minister of the interior.  They were extradited only because they

 8     had carried out their duty in a professional manner pursuant to the

 9     constitution of a sovereign state, Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, and

10     defended their country from terrorism/separatism, and from the NATO

11     aggression.

12        A.   Mr. Prosecutor, this is a combination of a sort.  This entire

13     passage is something that no general can ever utter, and I'm not sure,

14     maybe a part of this was taken from an e-mail or something.  I was never

15     on a meeting where this was discussed.  In the continuation here, it is

16     mentioned that they defended their homeland pursuant to the relevant

17     legislation of their county, and this is why they had to be provided with

18     all the necessary support.

19             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Mr. Nikolic, the question to you is not whether

20     you were present when those were written or whether you were the author.

21     The question to you is, do you agree with the statement or not?  If you

22     agree you say yes, I do agree; if you do not agree, you say I don't

23     agree.

24             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, the Prosecutor asked

25     me which parts of this statement I can agree with, and I said, I disagree

Page 10756

 1     with the part prior to a full stop, to where -- I'm not sure I can read

 2     this correctly.  The second part is the part that I do agree with, and I

 3     can't agree with the first part.

 4             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you.  I'm sorry, my mistake.

 5             MR. THOMAS:

 6        Q.   So, I'm sorry, General.  Can I just check the transcript for a

 7     moment.  So we are clear, you said you agreed with the second part of the

 8     statement.  That's what the transcript says; is that correct?

 9        A.   That's correct.  I think it starts with "they were" and from

10     there on.

11             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Yes, Mr. Lukic.

12             MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I do not want to suggest anything to

13     Mr. Thomas, but Mr. Thomas gave me in Serbian those words that he is now

14     reading, so shouldn't we provide the witness with the Serbian version

15     rather than have him read the transcript in English which he can't

16     understand?

17             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Mr. Thomas.

18             MR. THOMAS:  I understand my friend's suggestion, Your Honour.  I

19     chose to put the proposition first before using the document if

20     necessary.  The general has adopted the proposition and responded to it

21     so I don't feel the need to do that, and, in fact, Your Honours, that at

22     this point concludes my cross-examination.  I don't intend to revisit the

23     matter in respect of which General Nikolic was to seek legal advice.

24             JUDGE MOLOTO:  You don't -- oh.

25             MR. THOMAS:  I don't intend to revisit the matter.

Page 10757

 1             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you very much.  Any re-examination,

 2     Mr. Lukic?  To finish by quarter to?

 3             MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Yes, but I certainly won't be able to

 4     finish this today.  I can start, and I'm prepared to start with some

 5     questions for these seven minutes, or we can allow the witness to have

 6     some rest because he will certainly have to be here tomorrow again.

 7             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Okay.  If that's what you wish, that's fine.

 8             Mr. Nikolic, Mr. Thomas has just indicated that he is not going

 9     to follow-up that subject for which we thought you must get a lawyer.

10     I'm not going to mention it because we are in open session.  Okay.  So

11     there is no need for you to go and look for legal advice.

12             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.

13             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you, sir.

14             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Could I make a proposal myself, as

15     a witness?

16             JUDGE MOLOTO:  What proposal do you want to make, sir?

17             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I would kindly ask you, if

18     possible, I'm not sure how long this could take because I do have some

19     family issues and I've been here for a long time already, so if it is

20     possible to complete this today, this would be my plea with this court

21     because I have been informed that my wife and child are not well, and I

22     also have some problems concerning the employment of my son.  I would

23     like to resolve these problems as soon as possible, so if at all

24     possible, I would kindly ask you to finish this today.  Obviously if Your

25     Honours are capable of granting this, I'm able to continue answering any

Page 10758

 1     questions today.

 2                           [Trial Chamber and Registrar confer]

 3             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Unfortunately before I give you the floor,

 4     Mr. Lukic.

 5             Unfortunately, Mr. Nikolic, there are many cases taking place in

 6     the building here, and there are only a few courtrooms, so there is no

 7     courtroom available this afternoon for us to carry on with your case.

 8     Other cases are going to be sitting.  So it is not possible to finish

 9     with you today.

10             However, let me just find out from the lawyers whether they may

11     want you to stand down and go and attend to your problems and then come

12     back later or whether they have any other solution that they can propose

13     to come to your rescue.

14             Mr. Lukic, you are on your feet.

15             MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Well, I can inform Your Honours and

16     the witness that I could complete my redirect examination in

17     approximately 40 minutes.  Now, I'm not sure whether Your Honours will

18     have any questions for the witness.  As far as I know, we were supposed

19     to sit in the afternoon tomorrow, possibly if we are done by 4.00 p.m.

20     tomorrow, the witness might take an evening flight if the witness unit

21     can see to that.  So possibly Mr. Nikolic could make his suggestion now

22     and see if this is acceptable to him or not, or if he could come back

23     after the Easter break.

24             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Apparently we just need you for under an hour

25     tomorrow, would that be okay, just for an extra day?  I know you have

Page 10759

 1     been here for a very long time.  The alternative is going to be that you

 2     go away and then come back for 40 minutes.

 3             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, I do not accept to appear here

 4     again tomorrow.  I do not accept the continuation of this proceedings.

 5             MR. LUKIC:  [Interpretation] Not even in Serbian could I

 6     understand you, General.

 7             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I agree with these proceedings

 8     being continuing tomorrow.

 9             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you very much, Mr. Nikolic.  We'll certainly

10     finish with you tomorrow.

11             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, thank you very much.

12                           [Trial Chamber confers]

13             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Judge Picard is just indicating that tomorrow

14     morning there is a courtroom available if that would help, that means

15     that everybody must be in a position to come.

16             MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] I have no problem with that, sir.

17     And possibly it might be easier for the witness unit to organise the

18     transportation of the witness.

19             JUDGE MOLOTO:  How do the interpreters and everybody else feel

20     about it including the stenographer and all the other technical people?

21             THE INTERPRETER:  I think for the interpretation, Your Honour,

22     there wouldn't be a problem.

23             JUDGE MOLOTO:  Thank you so much for your co-operation.  We'll

24     then adjourn to tomorrow morning at 9.00 in the morning in Courtroom II.

25             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, thank you very much.

Page 10760

 1             JUDGE MOLOTO:  You are very welcome, sir.  Before I forget, you

 2     may not discuss with anybody this case until you are excused tomorrow,

 3     okay, especially not your lawyers.  Okay?

 4             THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I have never seen him anyway, sir.

 5                           --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.48 p.m.

 6                           to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 10th day of

 7                           March, 2010, at 9.00 a.m.