1 Friday, 25 August 2006
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.00 a.m.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Madam Registrar, good morning to you. Could you
6 kindly call the case, please.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. This is case number
8 IT-05-88-T, the Prosecutor versus Popovic et al.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, ma'am.
10 Same advisory to the accused: If at any time there are problems
11 with interpretation, please let us know straight away.
12 I see no differences in the presentations. Any preliminaries?
13 Yes, Mr. Nicholls.
14 MR. NICHOLLS: Good morning, Your Honours.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Good morning to you.
16 MR. NICHOLLS: Just one. An error in the transcript we were
17 alerted to yesterday. It's on page 92. Several times what was translated
18 from the witness was that he said, "Take it easy, take it easy."
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, I remember that, yes.
20 MR. NICHOLLS: And I've been told by people on our team who speak
21 the language that what he said was, "Take it slowly, slowly," on all
22 occasions and that the translation was as, "Take it easy" but that the
23 word really is "slowly," and that has been consistent - I think the
24 Defence will agree - with the other times he has been here and in his
25 statements, but I just offer that.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Are there any remarks from the Defence
2 teams on this? None.
3 JUDGE KWON: I'm not sure that can be corrected by --
4 JUDGE AGIUS: It can only be corrected by referring it to the
5 witness and having him confirm that what he said as being stated by the
6 Serb soldier was "Take it slowly," and not "Take it easy." That's the
7 only way we can do it.
8 [Trial Chamber confers]
9 JUDGE AGIUS: First we need to check whether we have the same
10 interpreters as we had yesterday morning.
11 THE INTERPRETER: We do, Your Honours.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. And do you recall this part?
13 THE INTERPRETER: We do, Your Honours.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. And would you agree with what has been
15 suggested by the Prosecution?
16 THE INTERPRETER: We would, Your Honours.
17 [Trial Chamber confers]
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Thank you. Any further remarks, preliminary
19 issues? None?
20 MR. NICHOLLS: Just, Your Honour, that I've reviewed the
21 transcript and I've cut down my direct. I have no further questions of
22 the witness, so he can proceed directly to cross.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Before we bring the witness in, is it
24 still the position of the various Defence teams that each one of you would
25 like to cross-examine this witness or are there any of you that do not
1 feel the need for that?
2 All right. Mr. Bourgon, do you still stand by the same -- do we
3 still stay by the same time schedule, Ms. Nikolic?
4 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: So let's bring -- Yes, Mr. Nicholls.
6 MR. NICHOLLS: Sorry. One thing I should have said before I
7 rested completely is I move to introduce now, if I need to, the exhibits
8 from yesterday.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Go ahead.
10 MR. NICHOLLS: And I believe those numbers were --
11 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment, let me find them so I can follow you
13 MR. NICHOLLS: Perhaps -- I've been told by Mr. McCloskey the
14 practice in the past has also been to do it at the end of
16 JUDGE AGIUS: If none of my colleagues object to that, I will have
17 no objection. No objection.
18 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Usher. Make sure that the gallery is empty. All
20 right. Thank you.
21 Who is going first? Defence team for Popovic, I suppose. Let's
22 take it in the same order as the names appear on the indictment. Yes.
23 Thank you.
24 [The witness entered court]
25 WITNESS: WITNESS PW-110 [Resumed]
1 [Witness answered through interpreter]
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Good morning to you, sir.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Welcome back. I hope you had enough time --
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: -- enough time to rest. Before we left this
7 courtroom yesterday, I told you that we will have a few minutes during
8 which Mr. Nicholls will terminate or finish his examination-in-chief.
9 That's not going to happen. He thinks that he's finished with you
10 already. So we are going to proceed straight away with the various
11 cross-examinations that the various Defence teams have prepared for you.
12 May I just remind you that yesterday you made a solemn undertaking
13 with us that you would be testifying the truth, the whole truth, and
14 nothing but the truth, and that solemn undertaking still holds for today's
15 sitting. You don't need to repeat it --
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: -- it still holds for today's sitting.
18 Yes. Mr. Zivanovic, who is lead counsel defending Mr. Popovic,
19 will be the first one to go.
20 Yes, Mr. Zivanovic.
21 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Could we go to the private session?
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, certainly. Let's go into private session for a
23 while, please.
24 [Private session]
11 Page 731 redacted. Private session.
7 [Open session]
8 JUDGE AGIUS: We are in open session, Mr. Zivanovic.
9 MR. ZIVANOVIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. Yesterday, you mentioned a united vehicle -- a United Nations
11 vehicle, a white transporter that joined the column somewhere around
12 Vidikovac. You did not see that, did you, but you heard of that. Would
13 you please answer.
14 A. At the time, I did not see it when the people who were on the
15 lorry who said that they saw the lorry.
16 Q. They saw the transporter during the column.
17 A. Yes. And I saw it in Orahovac in the courtyard of the school.
18 Q. Yes. Thank you. And I'll have just one more question. The
19 soldiers who were on that transporter, you saw them only in the courtyard
20 of the school in Orahovac?
21 A. Yes, only in Orahovac, nowhere else. They wore UNPROFOR uniforms,
22 but on the APC there were no UNPROFOR markings. The only thing I saw was
23 a letter C, which is an S in the Latinic. The soldiers did not react.
24 The civilians did not -- the civilian did not react. Those were Serb
25 soldiers who had captured an APC, or maybe even more APCs, and they
1 pretended to be UNPROFOR troops.
2 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Thank you, Your Honour. I have no more questions
3 for him.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you so much, Mr. Zivanovic.
5 Is it Mr. Meek who is going next?
6 MR. MEEK: Thank you, Your Honour.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Now, Mr. Meek is representing Accused Beara.
8 Yes, Mr. Meek.
9 MR. MEEK: May I get the podium, Your Honour?
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, certainly. Yes, Mr. Meek.
11 Cross-examination by Mr. Meek:
12 Q. Good morning. How are you today?
13 A. Good morning. Well, so-so. As you see me sitting here.
14 Q. Witness, you just testified that you concluded that these two
15 individuals with UN uniforms were imposters; is that correct?
16 A. Yes, a hundred per cent. I'm a hundred per cent positive about
18 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... sir, that you testified
19 yesterday under oath that you just watched them and that they had no
20 reaction whatsoever.
21 A. Yes, that's correct. I am testifying under oath, but you also
22 have to tell the truth, because all those who lie has to go there and sit
23 with those who did whatever they did.
24 MR. MEEK: [Previous translation continues] ...
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. One moment. Look at me, Witness. Witness.
1 Witness. Look at me, please. Mr. Meek, like Mr. Nicholls, like
2 Mr. Popovic, like every other lawyer in this courtroom, is here to do his
3 -- perform his duty towards his respective client. It's a basic
4 principle of law that Mr. Meek has a right to put questions to you on
5 behalf of his client, and you have taken an undertaking with us that you
6 will not make any distinction between Prosecution and Defence when it
7 comes to answering questions, because wherever the questions are coming
8 from, you are going - that's what you promised us - to give us a straight,
9 clean answer which is the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the
11 Last thing I want from you is to enter into a confrontation with
12 any of the lawyers. If you don't agree with what is being put to you, you
13 have every right to say, "I don't agree," but you have no right to speak
14 to Mr. Meek or to any other representative of the various accused in the
15 way you did, and certainly not to make allegations that Mr. Meek is trying
16 to put false things to you is or not speaking the truth.
17 Have I made myself clear to you?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, very clear, Mr. President. I
19 am only trying to tell him that those who wore uniforms, UNPROFOR
20 uniforms, they did not react in any way. None of the soldiers did not
21 come and ask us anything. Don't put words into my mouth. I survived all
22 this, and there is no money that would make me testify falsely against
23 anybody. I'm telling the truth, like I said I would. And if these people
24 are not guilty, just put them on a plane and send them back home, because
25 my tragedy cannot be paid by anything or anybody.
1 Please, let's not deceive ourselves. I am going to answer his
2 questions, but there's nobody who can convince me that things were not the
3 way I saw them. I am just telling you the truth. Let everybody see that
4 I was not ill-treated. I'm not going to tell you what is not the truth.
5 I have a heart. I am a parent. I'm a human being, and not even Toma
6 Fila, if they brought Toma Fila from Belgrade, he would not prove me
7 wrong. Thank you very much.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. McCloskey.
9 MR. McCLOSKEY: Perhaps, Your Honour, I can help calm things down.
10 MR. MEEK: Your Honour, may I ask for a recess for this witness to
11 calm him down?
12 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't think there is a need for one. I think I
13 will calm him down. Yes, Mr. McCloskey.
14 MR. McCLOSKEY: As you know, this witness has testified many times
15 before --
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Twice.
17 MR. McCLOSKEY: Actually, three times in -- and he has done -- he
18 has done well. He has -- he has strong, strident views, but he has done
19 well. This is the fourth time. I think he's having a harder time because
20 of that, and I think he will understand that he needs to stay calm and
21 that he does feel strongly that they're just doing their job, and I wanted
22 to communicate that to you and to him, for everyone, so he can do the job
23 that he did last time and just do his best.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. And I am sure -- I'm going to address you
25 instead of him, but I am sure that he's all ears and that he will
1 understand exactly what I am going to say.
2 He needs to understand that when a Defence counsel stands up and
3 tries and insists with him that something was white and not black, the
4 fact that there is this insistence on the part of the -- of Defence
5 counsel does not mean that he is being forced to agree. If he doesn't
6 agree, he just has to say, "Counsel, you're wrong. I don't accept this.
7 It was black and not white. It was white and not black." All he has to
8 do is to respect the role and the function of each one of the Defence
9 counsel here.
10 It could also happen to you later on when you get these witnesses
11 that you have anticipated would not be exactly confirming what you would
12 like them to confirm, but the thing is that he's here to answer questions.
13 With every question that there is that he doesn't agree with what is being
14 suggested to him, he simply has to say, "I don't agree. No, you're wrong,
15 Mr. Meek." He doesn't have to argue with Mr. Meek. He is not here to
16 argue with anybody. He's just here to answer the questions that are put
17 to him.
18 Did you understand me?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: We are trying to help you out, and I am sure,
21 because I've been watching you for a whole day testifying, that you are a
22 very clever, intelligent man, and I am sure that you have understood me.
23 So please, cool it, calm down. And when Mr. Meek or whoever it will be
24 that will follow him that will put questions that you find irritating,
25 just answer the question and forget the irritation. I know that you have
1 passed through a hell of a lot, but this is why you are here. And once
2 you have accepted to come here and give testimony, you have to subject
3 yourself to all the questions that are put to you. Provided that they are
4 legitimate questions which we will allow, then you have to answer them.
5 The moment there is a question which should not be put to you, we will
6 stop it and then you will not be required to answer it. But until we say
7 so, you will need to answer all the questions that are put to you in a
8 calm manner, without entering into a direct confrontation, collision, with
9 any of the Defence counsel who are here to do their job. Agreed?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Agreed.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. And I thank you so much for understanding and
12 also for your cooperation. And if we continue like that, you will soon be
13 on your way back home.
14 Mr. Meek.
15 MR. MEEK: Thank you, Mr. President.
16 Q. Witness, first I would like to tell you that I understand that you
17 went through, like the Judge said, a hell of a lot, and I appreciate you
18 coming here to testify. Thank you. That's not a question.
19 And I will try to phrase my questions -- sir --
20 A. You don't understand. I apologise. You don't understand. If you
21 did understand, you would never ask me wrong questions, although you may
22 have right to put them to me. Please continue.
23 Q. Mr. Witness --
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's proceed. Mr. Meek, go ahead.
25 MR. MEEK:
1 Q. As the Judge said, if you don't agree with something I say, just
2 tell me, "I don't agree." My wife tells me I'm wrong all the time, and
3 it's okay if you do too; all right?
4 A. We all make mistakes. We all make mistakes.
5 Q. Now, I'll try to phrase my questions where you can answer in a yes
6 or a no. Do you understand?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. These two UN personnel that were dressed and by the UN vehicle,
9 you never spoke to them, did you?
10 A. I didn't.
11 Q. Can you tell me roughly how many metres away from you these two UN
12 soldiers were?
13 A. They were at the entrance to the courtyard. They were just
14 walking there. They'd never approached us. They were the soldiers who
15 ordered us to run into the school as we got off the vehicles.
16 Q. Okay. So when you testified yesterday that they -- they reacted
17 in no way whatsoever --
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. -- are you now today saying they did react in some way and they're
20 the ones who told you to run into the school?
21 A. No.
22 Q. So, not to belabour this, you never spoke to them; correct?
23 A. No, I did not speak to any soldier whatsoever, not only to those
25 Q. And they had an interpreter with them; correct? That's what you
1 testified to yesterday, I believe.
2 A. Yes. There was a man in his 50s with somewhat greyish hair; a big
4 Q. Now, can you tell me, Mr. Witness, approximately how many
5 statements have you given to the investigators for this International
6 Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia?
7 A. Can't remember. For this?
8 Q. Yes.
9 A. For this here? For this here? Four times. I've testified four
10 times, with the testimony today.
11 Q. And as far as sitting down and giving written statements or
12 statements which you read and then signed, do you remember how many times
13 you have done that?
14 A. God only knows. I've never counted those. I have given a number
15 of statements in Bosnia, and I have not given any statements here.
16 Q. Well, do you recall speaking to the investigators on the 13th and
17 14th of August in 1995?
18 A. 13 and 14 I don't remember. I never carried those papers on me.
19 If you have them and if that is what it says, then that's correct. If you
20 don't have those papers, then I don't know.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: I will simplify it for you, Witness, because I don't
22 think it's fair to put 13th and 14th of August, 1995, just like that.
23 13th, 14th of August is just one month after the events in Srebrenica.
24 Did you ever give a statement to an investigator just one month after the
25 events in Srebrenica in 1995 or not?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. I gave my first statement in
2 the District Court in Tuzla, to a lady called Ajsa Kapic, and I don't know
3 when that was. I can't remember any of the dates. That was a long time
4 ago. That was 11 years ago.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Mr. Meek.
6 MR. MEEK: Thank you, Judge.
7 Q. Witness, on the 11th of July, 1995, you and your brother and other
8 people decided to leave Srebrenica and go to Tuzla; correct?
9 A. That is correct.
10 Q. And didn't you in fact go to a rally that day?
11 A. What rally, where?
12 Q. A meeting.
13 A. A meeting. No. No. On the 11th of July, everybody left
14 Srebrenica; the women, the children, the able-bodied men.
15 Q. But before you left, and I believe because you've testified in
16 three previous trials here, that you went to a meeting with your brother
17 before you left to go to Tuzla.
18 A. No, no. We never -- never had any meetings about the departure.
19 We didn't know that that would happen. We just knew that the situation
20 around Srebrenica had gotten worse, but we didn't know what would happen.
21 We were absolutely sure that any zone under the United Nations protection
22 could ever fall, because that would have been worse than for any other
23 town which was -- was in a protected area to fall.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Meek, what, may I ask you, is the relevance of
25 this line of questions?
1 MR. MEEK: Well, Judge, if it please the Court, the witness has
2 testified previously there was a rally which he and his brother attended
3 on the 11th, and there was a decision made at that time that they should
4 leave, a lot of folks. Not just he and his brother, but many people from
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Still, what's the relevance of the question?
7 MR. MEEK: The relevance is I would like to know from this witness
8 who are the leaders, because he's testified previously --
9 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Go ahead.
10 MR. MEEK:
11 Q. Do you recall, Witness, testifying in the Krstic case, General
12 Krstic -- his trial, do you recall that?
13 A. No, no. It may have been the case that on that day people met to
14 talk about what was going on and to discuss this, but I didn't go there.
15 On that day I was simply thinking hard about what to do. That was all
16 before the order came that we had to leave because UNPROFOR could not
17 settle things. Shells started falling. Whoever didn't witness this
18 wouldn't be able to tell you this.
19 I saw women and children go to the UN base at Vidikovac, and the
20 women, once they saw a truck parked there, although there was no driver,
21 they were trying so hard to get on the truck that they tore apart the
22 tarpaulin that was up there.
23 Q. Thank you. Witness, you just testified that: "That was all
24 before the order came that we had to leave because UNPROFOR could not
25 settle things." You just stated that. Now, my question to you is who
1 gave the order?
2 A. To whom? To us? Well, we took the decision ourselves. There was
3 no one else. You know what happened to the elderly people at Potocari.
4 Gentlemen, what would have become of us? We would have been shot like
5 dogs. Please, come. Those were elderly people aged 80 or 90 who were
6 killed. What was there else for us to do? Even the children were taken
7 away. I am here just to tell the truth.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Meek. I think he has answered your
9 question. If you insist on this subject and would like to suggest to him
10 specific names, go ahead, but otherwise drop it and move to the next --
11 MR. MEEK: I'll just ask the witness this question:
12 Q. Where was the meeting that you -- where did it take place before
13 the order came for you to leave?
14 A. It must have been held in the area of Srebrenica, perhaps near
15 Vidikovac. I wasn't there, so this may not have been the case, but it was
16 on that day that Srebrenica fell, and there's nothing else for me to say.
17 You know, you gentlemen, Serbs, you know what you did. Please
18 try and save your soul. We will all die, and there there will be no
19 lawyers, I tell you.
20 Q. So --
21 JUDGE AGIUS: If you continue like this, I will have to stop you
22 and send you home --
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. President --
24 JUDGE AGIUS: And send you home. And you would have come here in
25 vain. You would have wasted your time and our time. I don't think you
1 have understood -- let me finish, please. I don't think you have
2 understood. I said answer the question and stop sending accusations here
3 and there to anyone. You're here to answer the questions that are put to
4 you, and please stick to that. Otherwise, I will conclude your -- your
5 testimony here and send you home, and you would have wasted two precious
6 days for us.
7 Mr. Meek.
8 MR. MEEK: Thank you, Mr. President.
9 Q. Witness, I've read your statements, all six of them that I have in
10 my possession, and I've read your testimony from your other three events
11 when you testified in this Tribunal. Who made -- your wife and children
12 had already left to go to Potocari, correct, on the 11th of July?
13 A. No. My wife and my children were never at Potocari. My wife and
14 my children were at Tuzla, in the municipality of Srebrenica, in the Tuzla
15 canton. I never stated that. I apologise.
16 Q. And when did they leave?
17 MR. NICHOLLS: I'm sorry. What is the relevance of this?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] My family --
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, go ahead. Answer the question, please. Thank
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] My family left on the 30th of
22 January or the 1st of February, 1993, on foot for the free territory of
24 MR. MEEK:
25 Q. Thank you. Now, you testified yesterday that you believe there to
1 be 15 to 20.000 Muslims in the column that was heading towards Tuzla; is
2 that correct?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. And can you tell me how it is that you arrived at this estimate?
5 A. The estimate was based on the line-up, the observation of the
6 people who were seated in the meadow. This was simply an estimate. Of
7 course, the figure could go up or down.
8 Q. And when you just mentioned meadow, which meadow are you referring
9 to, sir?
10 A. The meadow at Susnjari and during the journey toward Susnjari.
11 Q. Okay. And you testified that it was a very long column; correct?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And can you tell me, approximately how long was that column; one
14 kilometre, two kilometres, three kilometres?
15 A. Well, one could estimate it at 10 kilometres, perhaps more,
16 judging by how many people were walking, because the lay of the terrain
17 was such that it hardly permitted the civilians to walk in twos.
18 Q. And the terrain did not permit you to see the entire column; is
19 that correct, sir?
20 A. Well, no one was able to see it entirely ever, because we know
21 that the column was cut off, and I was toward the rear of the column.
22 Q. And in the part of the column, the portion of the column that you
23 could see, you've estimated that there were at least 4 to 500 armed Muslim
24 soldiers; is that correct?
25 A. No. The ones who were armed left with the first columns. In the
1 last columns, there were hardly any armed people.
2 Q. And again, am I correct in stating that it's your estimate that 4
3 to 500 of the individuals, Muslim soldiers, in that column were armed?
4 A. Yes, yes. The ones who were around left first. The ones who were
5 left behind unarmed, one knows what their fate was.
6 Q. Thank you. And yesterday, you testified that it was very
7 difficult to tell how many people were armed. Is that correct, sir?
8 A. No. Well, of course it's quite natural that you can't count the
9 weapons when there's so many people around. That's only natural. But it
10 was just an estimate.
11 Q. And that -- you would agree with me, Witness, that estimate could
12 have been very low and there could have been 5.000 armed troops in that
13 column; correct?
14 A. Had there been 5.000 armed troops, things would never happen the
15 way -- would have never happened the way they did. I apologise.
16 Q. Now, in July -- excuse me, in June - specifically on the 13th of
17 June, 1999 - Investigator Ruez from this Tribunal, from the Office of the
18 Prosecutor, met with you in Bosnia-Herzegovina, did he not?
19 A. In 1999?
20 Q. Yes.
21 A. Well, yes. He met with me, but I think he also met with me in
22 1995, just as he did in 1999.
23 Q. Thank you. And can you tell me, what was the purpose of your
24 meeting on June 13th of 1999 when you went to the field?
25 A. The purpose of it was to go to the spot where we were executed, to
1 see the spot where we were taken prisoner. That was the purpose of it.
2 Q. And did you accomplish that purpose, Witness?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Thank you. And during that excursion, did you show Investigator
5 Ruez exactly where the location -- you believe the location of the field
6 where the killings took place was located?
7 A. Yes. I did show him for the meadow where I was, but as for the
8 other meadow, I wasn't sure about it. I know that the fields were near to
9 each other, but I was 100 per cent positive about the meadow where I was,
10 where I stood.
11 Q. So it's your testimony that Investigator Ruez did not have to take
12 you to a field and ask you, "Is this the location?"
13 A. No. He -- or, rather, based on my statement, the site was found
14 right away and was secured with barbed wire. The cornfield that I
15 mentioned, in that particular field corn had not been -- had not ever been
16 reaped, cut, so basically the same cornstalks that were there at the time
17 I was there still stood at that later visit.
18 Q. Witness, previous -- previously, you had in fact sat down with
19 investigators from the Office of the Prosecutor, and they showed you a
20 series of pictures, did they not, and a video that was filmed by Peter
21 Nicholson? Do you recall that, sir?
22 A. Of course, I do.
23 Q. And --
24 A. If I watched it, then I must remember it. Well, if I didn't, then
25 of course I would not remember.
1 Q. And after you looked at that video and after you looked at the
2 pictures, you told the Office of the Prosecutor that the area shown on the
3 film might be the zone of the execution but that you did not recognise
4 anything on that film. Do you recall that, sir?
5 A. Let me put it this way: As far as the diagrams are concerned, or
6 film, it's always impossible for me to recognise the spot on the basis of
7 this. I am not a construction -- a civil engineer to be able to read into
8 any sort of drawings. I can only describe it for you and then it's up to
9 you to go down into the field to the location. I cannot be asked to talk
10 about these things on that basis.
11 Q. So you didn't recognise anything in the video, and you told the
12 investigators that; correct? Yes or no.
13 A. No, no. I'm telling you, as far as the video clip is concerned --
14 well, you see, yesterday when I was showing the hall, and I was trying to
15 point to a wall, but the picture seemed to be like a photocopy and wasn't
16 clearly visible as it would have been if I were there.
17 I can describe the area for you. On the basis of my statement
18 that I gave in 1995, they immediately drew their conclusions, because I
19 myself was blindfolded. I was in a lorry. But when I was brought -- when
20 I was brought there, I couldn't get my bearings, but when I was running
21 away, when I came across the railway, I tried to make my conclusions.
22 When I was being taken there, I was in a lorry that was covered in. It
23 was just on the basis of these other indications like the underpass that I
24 saw, or a flyover that was there, and it was on the basis of these
25 indications that I was able to get my bearings.
1 Q. Now, in all your discussions with Investigator Ruez from the
2 Office of the Prosecutor, did he ever indicate to you that the number of
3 people in this column was approximately 15 to 20.000 people?
4 A. Who, Ruez?
5 Q. Ruez, yes.
6 A. I said that. Ruez could not have said that. He wasn't there with
8 Q. Okay. On the day that you decided to surrender when you were in
9 the hills and the Serb soldiers were on megaphones, you've testified that
10 you surrendered about 3.00 in the afternoon; is that correct?
11 A. Yes. Yes. In the afternoon. They gave us an ultimatum. It --
12 it may have been gone 3.00, but the ultimatum was for 3.00.
13 Q. And tell me again what day that was, sir, if you recall.
14 A. That was on the 13th.
15 Q. Thank you. Later that afternoon, you've testified that a
16 gentleman came and it was, to your knowledge, General Mladic; correct?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Okay. And how long had you been in that meadow before General
19 Mladic appeared?
20 A. We must have been there for some three to four hours. I can't
21 tell you precisely because I didn't have a watch. And Mladic came just
22 before dusk. It wasn't dark yet. And he greeted us by saying, "Good
23 evening, Neighbours."
24 Q. Thank you. You previously testified that he arrived approximately
25 an hour to an hour and a half before nightfall. Does that refresh your
2 A. No, no. It was close to nightfall, but the sun was still there.
3 After Mladic left, when we were on our way from that spot to Bratunac,
4 dark had -- darkness had already set in.
5 MR. NICHOLLS: Sorry.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Nicholls.
7 MR. NICHOLLS: Sorry to interrupt. Could we have page and dates
8 and where these previous testimonies are coming from so that I can follow?
9 JUDGE AGIUS: You're perfectly right --
10 MR. MEEK: I was going to do that, Judge. It's on page 2658, the
11 Krstic trial, starting at line 20 through 23.
12 Q. Witness, if your family left in 1993 and you remained till 1995,
13 what did you do?
14 A. I was a farmer. I -- I was helping people who had their farms and
15 who were still there. So I was trying to help them farm their fields.
16 Q. Is it your testimony that you've never been a member of any armed
17 services or armed forces?
18 A. Yes. I was not in Srebrenica. I was -- before Srebrenica I was
19 with the Territorial Defence. We did not have an army.
20 Bosnia-Herzegovina was attacked as a country without an army. Tuzla
21 formed corps, and I don't know when it was, but we didn't have that. We
22 had the Territorial Defence and whatever means we had at our disposal to
23 defend ourselves.
24 Q. Could you tell me what year or years you were a member of the
25 Territorial Defence, and which location, please.
1 A. I was in my hometown when my hometown was attacked. We were
2 defending ourselves. And then when Srebrenica fell, I was also a member
3 of the army, because they wanted to relieve me of my military duty after
4 the tragedy I went through. However, I didn't want to. And then came the
5 end of the war.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment. One moment, because we need to be very
8 Srebrenica fell twice. It fell in 1992, and it fell again in
9 1995. In 1992, it was taken by the Bosnian Muslims. So let's take it
10 from the beginning of the war in April, 1992.
11 You said you were in a territorial fighting group in your
12 hometown. Is that Kamenica?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes. I wasn't at Srebrenica.
14 It was on the 14th of March, 1993, that I arrived in Srebrenica, not
15 before ever.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: You told us that yesterday. So you were in the
17 territorial force in Kamenica from what time to what time?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Sometime between end of April and
19 1993 when we left Kamenica. I was a member, but as I said, we never had
20 an army. We were able to help one another, and there were quite a few of
21 us, but the area was large and maybe there were 100 armed people for every
22 1.000 citizens. We surrendered our weapons to Serbs, and the receipt was
23 signed by A. Cecalic. I think he was a warrant officer. I'm sure the
24 Serbs would know who he was.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Okay. And then when you said that you
1 again took up arms again after Srebrenica fell, you're referring to
2 post-July, 1995, then.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. That was at the end of 1995.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Okay. It's clear. Thank you.
5 Mr. Meek, I am not going to stop you, of course, but you started
6 your cross-examination at 9.13. You knock off five minutes that we have
7 spent on other matters, you're approaching -- or you are approaching
8 three-quarters of an hour. So I'm not going to stop you, but of course
9 there are other Defence teams that have indicated -- go ahead.
10 MR. MEEK: Yes, Your Honour. I appreciate that and I hope Your
11 Honours can appreciate that all the --
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Go ahead.
13 MR. MEEK:
14 Q. Did you ever serve, sir, in the JNA army?
15 A. Yes, yes. I'm -- I served my service for the JNA.
16 Q. And when did you serve in the JNA, sir?
17 A. In 1971 -- 1972.
18 Q. And for how long did you serve in the JNA?
19 A. For 15 months.
20 Q. And where were you based?
21 A. I'm not sure whether I should state that since I'm a protected
22 witness. Perhaps I should consult the Trial Chamber.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Is it important for you to know, Mr. --
24 MR. MEEK: Yes, it is, Your Honour. May we go to private session.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Let's go to private session for a while,
2 [Private session]
16 [Open session]
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, we are back in open session. Thank you,
18 Mr. Meek, you may proceed.
19 MR. MEEK:
20 Q. Witness, I only have a few more questions. The first one is why
21 did you not go to the free territory with your family when they left
22 previous to -- prior to July 11, 1995, sir?
23 A. Let me tell you why I didn't want to leave: Because if I leave
24 and my family leaves and we get captured, then all of us would perish.
25 And there's another thing. I'm a parent. I have two daughters and one
1 son. The hardest blow to me would be to see my daughter raped by someone.
2 That's the most difficult thing that can happen to a person. That would
3 be even worse for me than to have my daughter killed by a Chetnik and have
4 to bury her. That's the sort of person I am. I think that's the worst
5 humiliation a person can experience. And this was something that was
6 happening in the neighbouring village.
7 Q. Thank you. I'm from Kansas in America, and you just used the term
8 "Chetnik." Is that a derogatory term, sir, or not?
9 A. No. And do you know why? Because they themselves behaved that
10 way, you know. And I told you yesterday, when people addressed them by
11 soldiers, they said, "No, we're not soldiers. We are Karadzic's Chetniks,
12 Young Karadzic's Chetniks." So they prided themselves on that. So we may
13 be interacting in this way, but they do pride themselves on that fact.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Yes, Mr. Meek.
15 MR. MEEK:
16 Q. Can you tell me, describe, what is a Chetnik? What is that?
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Do we have to belabour this, Mr. Meek? Don't answer
18 the question.
19 MR. MEEK: One other question, Judge.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Don't answer the question. Move to the next
21 question, please.
22 MR. MEEK: Okay.
23 Q. I understand why you've now told me that you did not go with your
24 family to the free territory. My next question is: At some point you
25 knew they were in the free territory and they were safe. Am I correct?
1 A. You know when I knew? As a group crossed over, they would let us
2 know so many had come, and we didn't know who these people were. In 1993,
3 in April, May, June or July, the Red Cross registered our families. They
4 were taken to a place and then the lists of their names had arrived, and
5 it is only then when I realised that they had crossed safely. For two or
6 three months I didn't know their whereabouts. I only knew that some
7 groups did manage to save themselves, but I didn't know whether my family
8 was among them.
9 Q. I take it, then, that around April, May, June or July of 1993, you
10 did become aware, though, that they were registered with the Red Cross and
11 were safe in the free territory; correct? Yes or no.
12 A. Yes. Yes.
13 Q. Thank you. My next question is: Why didn't you go to the free
14 territory after you knew that your family was safe? Why did you stay in
16 A. Where should I leave from? Should I have left to lose an arm, a
17 leg, or my life? I was 40-something. What did you expect me to do, to
18 walk barefoot through the Serb lines? How would I have managed to cross
19 through? I would have liked to live with my family. It is only now that
20 I'm a happy man, that I am living with my family.
21 Gentlemen, I spent all my life working in the field; in Belgrade,
22 all over the place. I worked long hours. I held jobs in order to build
23 my house, and that was all destroyed within the scope of one day. I lost
24 everything. When I finally --
25 JUDGE AGIUS: All right, I said stop.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- arrived somewhere, it was with
2 one little bag in my hands.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: It was a simple question which required just one
5 Yes, Mr. Meek, next question.
6 MR. MEEK:
7 Q. Witness, in the last few days or weeks since you've been in The
8 Hague to testify in this courtroom, have you met with any other witnesses
9 who are going to be testifying in this case?
10 A. Yes.
11 MR. MEEK: Could we go into private session, please?
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's go into private session, please.
13 [Private session]
10 [Open session]
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Now Mr. Bourgon, who is appearing for
12 Mr. Nikolic, will be putting some questions to you.
13 MR. NICHOLLS: Your Honour.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Nicholls.
15 MR. NICHOLLS: Your Honour, I know it's very early, but maybe it
16 would be good to have a short break now before the next segment of the
17 cross, just for the witness to relax for about 15 or 20 minutes. It's
18 just a suggestion.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Is it okay with you, Mr. Bourgon?
20 MR. BOURGON: I have absolutely nothing against that,
21 Mr. President.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: We'll have a 20-minute break starting from now.
23 Thank you.
24 --- Recess taken at 10.05 a.m.
25 --- On resuming at 10.34 a.m.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Bourgon, please.
2 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President. With your permission, I'd
3 like to move immediately into private session for a quick question.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's go into private session.
5 [Private session]
13 [Open session]
14 JUDGE AGIUS: We are in open session. Thank you.
15 MR. BOURGON:
16 Q. Sir, I will proceed with my cross-examination and ask you a few
17 questions, as I mentioned, to clarify a few issues. The first one I would
18 like to clarify with you is the -- the time when, of course, you decided,
19 along with other people, to depart from Srebrenica and head for the free
20 territory. Do you recall that time when you decided to leave Srebrenica?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. And, sir, when you -- as you were going towards the free
23 territory, there came a time when you decided, along with another group of
24 individuals, to surrender to Serb soldiers. Do you remember this?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. And if I understood you correctly, it was a tough decision to
2 surrender, and also a very stressful event, and it took some time before
3 you actually decided to surrender.
4 A. Yes. They gave us ultimatums. The first time was until 10.00,
5 and then we couldn't agree. We just shouted aloud. Then this ultimatum
6 was moved to 1500 hours, and after that we decided to surrender.
7 Q. And, sir, when you did decide to surrender, I've got information
8 from one of your conversations with one of the investigators that said you
9 were at that time so stressed that you would -- you were not in any
10 position to identify any military insignia. Would that be correct?
11 A. No. When we finally decided to surrender, there were no military
12 insignia. When we arrived at the place where we finally surrendered,
13 there were military insignia there.
14 Q. And, sir, when you met this man who you identified as being
15 Mladic, who addressed your group a little later, I would just like you to
16 confirm with me that after he had spoken to you, you were satisfied as to
17 what was going to happen. You thought you were going to be exchanged, and
18 you actually applauded Mr. Mladic before he left.
19 A. Yes. He encouraged us by his words.
20 Q. Now, sir, I will move immediately to the time that you arrived in
21 Orahovac. And I take it from your testimony and the material that I have
22 that you were able to know that you arrived in Orahovac sometime around
23 noon, and you knew this because of the position of the sun; is that
25 A. No, no. I think we may have arrived sometime in the afternoon.
1 Judging by the time we spent sitting there when people started leaving, I
2 left before sunset. I suppose we arrived sometime during the evening,
3 because summer days are very long.
4 MR. NICHOLLS: Again, if there are references to testimony, I'd
5 like to know when we're talking about.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: That's correct. Will you be dwelling on this any
8 MR. BOURGON: Yes, I will, and I am simply -- just because of the
9 answer, be quoting the exact reference. And I need to go into -- let me
10 see here.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's adopt a practice, Mr. Bourgon, and all the
12 other Defence teams, that when you are specifically referring the witness
13 to any previous testimony or prior statements, out-of-court statements,
14 that you make it clear what you're referring to, and if there is going to
15 be a series of questions, that the copy of the statement is made
16 available, handed to the witness so he can actually follow what was being
18 MR. BOURGON: Mr. President, this is --
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Although I understand that most -- most of the time
20 it would be in English and he wouldn't understand it, but --
21 MR. BOURGON: I fully agree, Mr. President. I just thought this
22 was a non-contested issue, but --
23 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't know, but --
24 MR. BOURGON: -- I will find a reference because I don't have it
25 with me now. The reference I have is not the right one, but I will move
1 on to my next question.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Thank you.
3 MR. BOURGON:
4 Q. Now, sir, after you arrived in Orahovac, you mentioned that there
5 were 30 vehicles, or abouts thereof, in the convoy leading to Orahovac.
6 Now, I suggest to you that you were not in a position to tell us whether
7 all of these vehicles made it to Orahovac or whether some of those might
8 have gone to another location.
9 A. I -- I am telling you that I don't know whether all the vehicles
10 made it to Orahovac. I just saw the convoy towards Glogova. There is
11 Avdaga's field, and from there I could see the convoy. Mind you, nobody
12 dared lift their head above the sides of the lorry. Only those who were
13 in the buses might have seen the whole column. And you are right, I'm not
14 in a position to know whether the entire convoy made it to Orahovac or
16 Q. Thank you, sir. Now, you yourself mentioned that you were in --
17 to the best of your knowledge, in the rear of that column; is that
19 MR. NICHOLLS: I'm not -- I'm sorry, I don't think that question's
20 very clear. He's talking about convoys and columns, which are different
22 MR. BOURGON: Mr. President, I would appreciate that if my
23 colleague is going to interrupt my cross-examination he should wait until
24 the witness has a problem answering my question.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment, please. Calm, calm down.
1 MR. BOURGON: -- without there being a problem.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Bourgon, Mr. Nicholls, please calm down. The
3 question was: "Now, you mention yourself that you were in -- to the best
4 of your knowledge, in the rear of that column ..." That's what we have in
5 the transcript. So there is no confusion there between a convoy or a --
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: -- at least -- I'm not talking to you for the time
8 being, sir. I'm just conversing with Mr. Bourgon and Mr. Nicholls. So
9 let's not make a storm in a teacup on this issue. But again, we will
10 control when objections are to be heard and at what time. And when you
11 stand up, Mr. Nicholls - and that applies again to any of the Defence
12 teams - wait until we give you the go-ahead. I mean, you know what some
13 of the tactics are, and it's important that especially the witness is
14 allowed to start and finish his statement without any suggestions, without
15 any interruptions, unless we give the go-ahead.
16 Question, Mr. Bourgon.
17 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President.
18 Q. Sir, I will simply try to say that it is my understanding from
19 your testimony yesterday that amongst those vehicles going to Orahovac,
20 you were not in the first vehicle, you were more towards the end of that
21 column going towards Orahovac.
22 A. No. I was not either towards the rear or in the front. I was in
23 the middle. When we left Susnjari on foot, I was amongst the last to
24 leave. I was at the rear of that column of people.
25 Q. Thank you, sir. Now, when you -- I move into the time when you
1 are moving into the sports hall. You mentioned yesterday that as you come
2 in the sports hall is half full and that people coming -- continue to come
3 in after you for about five or six minutes. Do you recall saying that?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. And I'd also like to confirm with you that in the sports hall you
6 saw four young people sitting by themselves in a separated area of the
7 sports hall.
8 A. They were not young people, they were children.
9 Q. But my point, sir, is that they were sitting by their own -- on
10 their own in a different part of the gym.
11 A. Yes. They were to a far end.
12 Q. Now, I would just like to clarify with you that the time you
13 arrive in the sports hall and the time for the first group of people to
14 leave on the TAM truck, that this includes several hours. Would that be
16 A. No, no. As the column started leaving, it went interruptedly --
17 without any interruptions. Only for a while people started slowing down
18 and pushing as if they were getting on a bus, but then when they -- when
19 they slowed down, then the soldiers started shouting at them, "You all
20 have to pass through here." And then when I left, from then on I don't
21 know how the others left after me.
22 Q. Now, sir, probably this was my mistake because my question was not
23 clear enough. What I'm trying to clarify from you is that you entered the
24 sports hall at a certain time, and then the -- some people from the sports
25 hall started to leave to be taken on TAM trucks. So that you were in the
1 sports hall for a long period of time before the first group left on the
2 TAM trucks. Would that be correct?
3 A. Yes, yes. We all spent a certain time there. Then the command
4 was issued by the soldier in the red beret, and as from then our eyes were
5 blindfolded and we started leaving. And all of us had spent a few hours
6 there at least.
7 Q. Thank you. Now, I'll go on to the events while you are sitting in
8 this sports hall, because you referred in your testimony to some events,
9 and my sole purpose now is just to place these events in order.
10 Now, my understanding is that the first event that took place is
11 when some officers or people you considered to be officers walked into the
12 sports hall. That's the first major event that took place. Would that be
14 A. Yes. When we were to be taken away, a group of soldiers came.
15 Maybe they were officers, but they didn't have caps on their heads or
16 insignia on their pockets. I did not see any of those. Then they issued
17 a command for the four rows of people from Potocari to stand up and turned
18 towards the right. Usually that command is to turn towards the left. And
19 they had to turn their faces towards the wall and backs towards the door.
20 And then this continued down to the middle of the hall, and from then on
21 it was the other way round; our faces were turned to the door and our
22 backs were turned to the wall. And maybe 10 or 15 minutes later the first
23 men were blindfolded and started being taken away through that door.
24 Q. Thank you, sir. That's what I -- I wanted to establish that the
25 first people to be blindfolded, and when the blindfolds were brought into
1 the sports hall, that was after these officers showed up. Please answer
2 by yes or no if you agree.
3 A. I don't know about the blindfolds. Maybe the blindfolds had been
4 used even before the officers came. In any case, the blindfolds were held
5 by that woman that I mentioned and the two men, two officers, two
6 soldiers, who were in that adjacent room.
7 Q. Thank you, sir. Now -- you referred yesterday in your testimony
8 to an incident where a man was taken out of the sports hall because he had
9 made a comment that these people should not be killed. Do you remember
10 making this in your testimony yesterday?
11 A. Yes. When all of us were lined up, this man was on the right-hand
12 side in the upper part of the sports hall, and when we were all lined up,
13 the people who had arrived left, those people who had lined us up, and
14 then this man, the captured man, said, "These people should not be
15 killed." I only know that he had black trousers on and a white shirt.
16 And then a Serb soldier who was standing at the door asked, "Who says
17 that?" And then this man repeated his words, "These people should not be
18 killed." And the soldier was a short man, around 25 or 30 years of age.
19 He was not either young or old. And then he said, "Okay. Let's see if
20 they should or they shouldn't. You come first." And then this man was
21 taken out. There was a rifle shot, the person screamed, there was another
22 shot, and the man was quiet. Another person was taken out from the school
23 building. Again there was a rifle shot, and the person could not be heard
24 and he wasn't returned.
25 In the meantime, those people who were also detainees and who
1 brought us water were prevented from -- for some time to bring any more
2 water. I don't know why they did that. Maybe they wanted to cover up --
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Stop. You just have to say yes or no. You didn't
4 have to repeat the whole story over again. You've already told us this.
5 If you continue like this --
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If need be, I'll repeat it all
8 JUDGE AGIUS: You will not repeat it all again unless you're asked
9 to repeat. Otherwise, just answer the question and only the question.
10 And if the question just solicits a yes or no answer, please restrict
11 yourself to that, because otherwise you'll be here the whole day and again
12 on Monday and again on Tuesday and you'll never finish with your
14 Mr. Bourgon.
15 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President.
16 Q. Now, sir, I did not want to interrupt you because -- if I can
17 avoid doing that I will always do so, but the question was simply: Did
18 this take place after the men who you considered to be officers arrived?
19 And I guess you'll agree with me the answer to this question is yes?
20 JUDGE AGIUS: He said it. Yes. That's the first word of --
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. I only wanted to repeat what I
22 said yesterday. Maybe tonight, when I'm asleep in my bed in the hotel, at
23 midnight somebody should come and wake me up and I will repeat it again.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Bourgon, your next question, please.
25 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President.
1 Q. Now, the next question is that I would just like to go again over
2 with you simply the sequence of events. That's all I'm trying to get at.
3 Do you understand that?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. And first there was those officers that came into the sports hall.
6 Do you agree?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Then there was the event where a man was taken outside because he
9 had made a comment about he did not want those people to be killed. Do
10 you agree?
11 A. Yes. Yes.
12 Q. And then there was the event of being blindfolded and bringing the
13 blindfolds into the gym. That's after the officers, or those you
14 considered to be officers, arrived.
15 A. Yes, yes. I suppose things are done on orders. Nothing is done
16 without an order having been issued, I suppose.
17 Q. And just one more question concerning those events into the sports
18 hall: The man with the red beret, you can confirm that this man was kind
19 of running the situation in the sense that he was taking the people
20 outside of the sports hall. Do you agree with that?
21 A. Yes. When he arrived, he took people from the sports hall to the
22 execution. Before he came, nobody was taken out. I'm not saying that I
23 am a hundred per cent sure that he was the boss of all that, that he was
24 running the situation, but he was the one who took people from the sports
25 hall to the execution site.
1 Q. Thank you, sir. Now, you mentioned when I -- when we look at the
2 events as you described them, would you agree that there was a change in
3 the atmosphere in the sports hall after those you considered to be
4 officers arrived in there?
5 A. Yes. They issued commands. They asked us to be quiet. It was
6 very hot. It was noisy. People were crammed into the room. They ordered
7 us to --
8 Q. [Previous translation continues] ...
9 A. -- be quiet and they realigned us.
10 Q. I just wanted to know whether there was a change after these
11 officers came into the gym. Now, I'll move on to the next --
12 A. Yes, yes.
13 Q. -- to my next question. It is: You mentioned that the guards who
14 were there shot some -- fired some shots in the windows for the people to
15 be quiet. Do you remember saying that yesterday?
16 MR. NICHOLLS: Sorry --
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. No, no.
18 MR. NICHOLLS: I think --
19 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment. Yes, Mr. Nicholls.
20 MR. NICHOLLS: I think that's a slight misstatement. I think he
21 said shots into the walls, is what I remember. I don't have a transcript
22 with us, but ...
23 JUDGE AGIUS: If we need to check that, we can check it.
24 MR. BOURGON: Mr. President --
25 JUDGE AGIUS: I do remember definitely the shots at the walls, and
1 he said you can still see them. That's my recollection. Or, rather, that
2 they were still there when he went on the -- but that's what I recall, but
3 I can't rule out that he also mentioned windows.
4 Yes, Mr. Bourgon.
5 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President. Whether it's windows or
6 walls, I'm just going to ask the witness whether he remembers saying that
7 there were shots fired to keep people quiet.
8 Q. Do you recall this, Mr. -- sir?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Now, sir, most people in this courtroom would not know this, but
11 if you fire a shot into a sports hall, would you agree with me that this
12 makes an incredible sound that actually can make you lose your hearing for
13 some minutes?
14 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment. Let me rephrase the question for
15 Mr. Bourgon.
16 Did you go through this experience when these shots were fired?
17 In other words, do you -- do you believe now with hindsight that there was
18 this incredible sound and that actually made you lose your hearing for
19 some minutes? Did you go through this experience or not?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. No. The noise was really
21 great, however, no, we didn't -- I didn't experience that. I could only
22 see that at that later visit there were still traces of the bullets that
23 were fired.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: I rephrased it, Mr. Bourgon, because --
25 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: -- the witness is not an expert. He can only tell
2 you what his experience was.
3 MR. BOURGON:
4 Q. Witness, my question is not whether you lost your hearing. My
5 question is does a bullet fired into a sports hall, when you were there,
6 does it make an incredible sound? Yes or no.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: He's answered that question. He said that makes a
8 hell of a lot of sound.
9 MR. BOURGON:
10 Q. Now, I will now move on to in terms of -- yesterday you mentioned
11 that -- and I would like you to confirm that you did not count the number
12 of persons in the sports hall. Is that correct?
13 A. That's correct.
14 Q. And I would like you to confirm also that when you were in
15 Orahovac, you did not see any military police or civilian police there.
16 A. No. As we were entering the perimeter, there olive-grey uniforms
17 and camouflage uniforms. Now, whether the military and the police had
18 different uniforms, that's something I really can't say.
19 Q. Thank you, sir. Now, I have here an information report of an
20 information that was discussed between you and an investigator from the
21 Tribunal where the investigator -- now, I refer to an information report
22 for my colleague dated the 26th of January, 1998. And it says in here
23 that the witness saw no civilian or military police, and he knows that
24 military police wear white belts.
25 Is that correct information, sir, that you know that military
1 police wear white belts?
2 A. No. Yes. That's what they used to wear before. I don't know
3 what they wore in wartime. I know that in peacetime the military police
4 wore white belts. However, this was no longer the JNA. It was a new
5 army. We didn't know what the insignia of your army was. I could only
6 read on the left-arm sleeve the Army of Republika Srpska. That's where we
7 were taken prisoners.
8 Now, as for these young men there where we were all sitting, there
9 were so many people and they were further away from me, I wasn't able to
10 make out what they had if they had anything.
11 Q. And, sir, I suggest to you that if they had been wearing a white
12 belt, you would have seen that at the time, would you?
13 A. No, no. I'm saying that for a fact there was no military police
14 there. I only don't know whether there was any civilian police there,
15 because they normally had blue uniforms or camouflage uniforms. Now,
16 there were different uniforms there. I know that when we were part of the
17 JNA that we had these sort of uniforms. Now, this particular army had
18 different types of uniforms.
19 Q. Thank you, sir. I'll move on to my next question, which is --
20 relates to the time that you are taken to a site where the execution takes
21 place, and my question is simply that I would like to know when, after the
22 execution took place - I mean after people were shot - you were lying down
23 on the ground but still alive.
24 Now, it's my understanding that this must have been the most
25 terrible experience in your life. Would you agree with me?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Now, you mentioned that you heard a conversation at that time
3 which was taking place close to an excavator, which was about 10 metres
4 from you. Is that correct?
5 A. Yes. The distance may have been more than 10 metres, but it was
6 thereabouts. There was the excavator working, I was lying down with my
7 blindfold. I dared not to move. I don't know whether there was -- I
8 didn't know who was next to me. Only when it became dark and as my body
9 went numb did I decide to move.
10 I had a large bloodstain on my shirt from the body that was lying
11 over me, and I had this wound that was probably inflicted by a stone,
12 because the wound wasn't that severe. I can even show it to you. I, of
13 course, have to have glasses to see it myself.
14 Q. Thank you, sir. Now, this machine that we are talking about, the
15 excavator, which could have been more than 10 metres away from you, it had
16 -- the engine was running. Would you agree with that?
17 A. Yes. The engine was running, working normally, digging up and
18 throwing up earth, and the rear part of the machine was facing us. So the
19 headlights were facing in the other direction. It was only later on when
20 another -- when another excavator came that the lights went over the
21 bodies, including myself.
22 Q. Thank you.
23 MR. BOURGON: Mr. President, could we move in private session for
24 a few questions.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, certainly. Let's go into private session for a
1 while, please.
2 [Private session]
22 [Open session]
23 JUDGE AGIUS: We are in open session. Thank you.
24 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President.
25 Q. I indicated to the Court, sir, that I had 30 minutes for my
1 cross-examination, so I only have a few more questions for you which
2 relate to the time that you escaped from this site. And I have
3 information in the same statement here that when you got up, your T-shirt
4 was soaked with blood. Do you recall this?
5 A. Not the entire T-shirt. It was just a round stain on my back. I
6 don't know. It must have been the blood flowing from the bodies around
7 me, beneath me.
8 Q. Sir, I will simply quote you from what you -- information you gave
9 to the investigators in the same statement. That's 13th and 14th August -
10 and for my colleagues, I quote page 6 in English version of that statement
11 - where it says: "Later, after I escaped, I discovered that the lower
12 back of my T-shirt was soaked with blood."
13 Do you recall this, or is this -- can this correspond to the
14 reality as you lived it?
15 A. Yes. Yes. There was this round stain on the small of my back.
16 And if I had it here, I'd show it to you now, because people asked me to
17 provide them with the T-shirt for identification purposes. And actually,
18 I didn't carry any of my belongings, so that was the only thing that I had
19 on me.
20 Q. Thank you, sir. I'll simply move on to asking you to confirm that
21 when you did run away -- and you explained that yesterday, so there's no
22 need to go back again into how you ran away, but I just want you to
23 confirm that there were shots fired and that people tried -- they were
24 looking for you when you tried to escape, but they did not find you, and
25 the shots did not hurt you, of course.
1 A. Yes. They went round the cornfield, and I was in the cornfield.
2 It was a ditch, and I could hear the sound of water. I didn't see it.
3 And they were firing shots without entering the cornfields. I don't know
4 where they were shooting or what they were shooting at. I could only hear
5 tree branches breaking.
6 Q. Thank you, sir. Now, I'd just like to discuss briefly with you
7 the -- an event which took place the following morning when you met a Serb
8 soldier. Do you recall that?
9 A. No. I reached the free territory, but I was terribly frightened
10 because I thought that I had come across a Serb soldier. I think that was
11 the following day. And I ran away from the man because I was 100 per cent
12 sure that this was a Serb soldier because it was close to the area where
13 the people managed to break through.
14 The man offered me a cigarette, and I introduced myself to him,
15 but he introduced himself to me in a wrong way, and I thought he was a
16 Serb soldier. So I went back into the Serb territory. I wandered there
17 and went back to the place I initially ran away from.
18 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... problem with the --
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Just one moment. Mr. Zivanovic.
20 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Excuse me, Your Honour. The witness mentioned
21 Baljkovica and it is not entered in the transcript.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: In what context did he actually mention it? As
23 being the place where he was or -- "I reached the free territory. I was
24 terribly frightened because I had come across a Serb soldier. I think
25 that was close to the area where the people managed to break through." Is
1 it there that he mentioned it?
2 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
3 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Line 17.
4 THE INTERPRETER: Counsel, come closer to the microphone.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay.
6 MR. ZIVANOVIC: Line 17. Excuse me.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Line 17, it's still Mr. Bourgon, actually, but --
8 Witness, did you at any time mention the place Baljkovica?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. President, Baljkovica and the
10 free territory were adjoining territories. I had this misunderstanding
11 with this soldier. I was terribly frightened, and I thought he was a Serb
12 soldier, and I ran away from him. And this man told my nephew, "Ask this
13 man whether I had offered him a cigarette," and indeed I was a smoker at
14 the time, and he did offer me a cigarette. But he, perhaps thinking that
15 I might be a Serb soldier, acted strangely.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Mr. Bourgon.
17 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President. At this time I would
18 simply like to show part of statement which was given by the witness. So
19 I'll try the e-court technology for the first time. And so I would like
20 to refer and ask the court usher to show document 3D -- Yes, 3D1. And
21 that is on -- 3D1, and that is page 7. Sorry, page 8. Can we have this
22 on the --
23 MR. NICHOLLS: Before we do that, could I --
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Nicholls.
25 MR. NICHOLLS: The statement, I don't know how it's going to come
1 up, but the statement has the witness's signature on the bottom of each
2 page. So if we show the statement, we have to make sure the signature is
3 not shown.
4 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for Mr. President.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: [Previous translation continues] ... and do that in
6 private session, than will solve the problem.
7 [Private session]
11 Pages 779-782 redacted. Private session.
15 [Open session]
16 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President.
17 Q. I have one last question for you, Witness, and that is simply that
18 we can understand from your testimony that you were taken to an execution
19 site, but you were lucky enough not to be injured. You escaped from that
20 execution site, and you were not injured. And you escaped from further
21 soldiers and you're still not injured for a third time. Is that correct?
22 A. Yes. Yes.
23 Q. And my last question is that when you visited the sites where the
24 shootings took place -- and that was -- this question was asked by my
25 colleague -- but you did not recognise those sites, did you?
1 A. Yes, because I was blindfolded. When I was put on that execution
2 site, the only thing I saw was dead men below me. I have three children,
3 and the only thought on my mind was these three children. And I thought
4 I'd never see them again. And I was just awaiting my death, imagining
5 what that would be like. God be praised, the only injury I suffered was
6 the stone injury between my fingers.
7 Q. I thank you for answering my questions, sir, and I will now pass
8 on the work to my next colleague. Thank you very much.
9 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you so much, Mr. Bourgon. Next go is --
11 yes, Mr. Nicholls.
12 MR. NICHOLLS: Sorry, Your Honour, I just think the second to last
13 question misstated the witness's evidence. I want to check on that. Line
14 -- page 58, line 3, "And you escaped from further soldiers and you're
15 still not injured."
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes.
17 MR. NICHOLLS: I think, if that's referring to the passage we
18 talked about in private session, that wasn't the witness's evidence, that
19 these soldiers were trying to do him harm.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, that's relevant, because at the end of the day,
21 I mean, what's being questioned is that he -- he remained unharmed
22 throughout the entire experience basically.
23 Yes. Next to go is Defence for Ljubomir Borovcanin. I see
24 Mr. Haynes. Oh, I see. I appreciate that, Mr. Haynes. I thank you so
25 much. Do you have space?
1 MR. LAZAREVIC: [Interpretation] It's more than I expected. It's a
2 huge one.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Sir, it's Mr. Lazarevic who is now going to put some
4 questions to you.
5 Mr. Lazarevic.
6 Cross-examination by Mr. Lazarevic:
7 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, sir.
8 A. Good morning.
9 Q. When I was preparing my questions for you, I tried to draft them
10 in that way so as to enable you to answer with just a yes or no.
11 A. Okay.
12 Q. If any of my questions are not clear, please tell me so and then I
13 will rephrase that question and then I will repeat the question in a
14 different way, because I want to make this experience as short as possible
15 for you. Did you understand?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Since we speak the same language, can you please make a pause
18 between my question and your answer.
19 MR. LAZAREVIC: Private session.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Let's go into private session straight away.
21 [Private session]
11 Pages 786-792 redacted. Private session.
10 [Open Session]
11 MR. NICHOLLS: One very short preliminary. Sorry.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Nicholls.
13 MR. NICHOLLS: May we send the next witness home? I think that
14 would make sense. I don't think we would get to a meaningful start today
15 unless my colleagues say they're going to be done in the next five or ten
17 JUDGE AGIUS: I definitely would agree with that.
18 MR. NICHOLLS: Thank you.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you. Home, you mean to the hotel, I suppose.
20 MR. NICHOLLS: Yes, Your Honour.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: I just don't want to -- make sure that I'm not
23 MR. NICHOLLS: It's my fault.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Yes, Mr. Lazarevic. We are still in
25 open session now, or we started in open session. If you need to go into
1 private session, we will do so.
2 MR. LAZAREVIC: Not at the moment, actually.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. I thank you.
4 MR. LAZAREVIC:
5 Q. Witness, let us resume the cross-examination, if you don't mind.
6 Please bear in mind the instructions I gave you. And we were warned by
7 the Trial Chamber that we spoke, both of us, too quickly. So please bear
8 that in mind.
9 Now, I'd like to discuss the 11th of July and the forming of the
10 column at Jaglici and Susnjari. I hope you agree that Jaglici and
11 Susnjari can be found several kilometres away from Srebrenica; is that
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. From which point did you set out when you reached Susnjari?
15 A. I set out from Susnjari; where else?
16 Q. Perhaps you misunderstood me. What was the point of departure
17 when you reached Susnjari?
18 A. Srebrenica.
19 Q. Thank you. That was the point I was trying to make. When was it
20 that you set out from Srebrenica for Susnjari?
21 A. On the 11th, in the early afternoon hours, perhaps around 1.00.
22 Q. By the time you reached Susnjari, there had already been a large
23 group of people there; is that right?
24 A. Yes. It was night-time. We were proceeding in a way so as not to
25 be noticed. There were -- Srebrenica is surrounded by hills, and these
1 hills offer a clear view of Srebrenica.
2 Q. Once you gathered at Susnjari, were you addressed by anyone, those
3 of you who were gathered there, and there were many of you there.
4 A. I didn't hear anything. There were many people there. I didn't
5 hear anything.
6 Q. Later on, as you proceeded with the column, did you hear from
7 anyone that someone had addressed the crowd there?
8 A. No.
9 Q. Witness, do you know or, rather, at the time did you know the
10 person called Ejub Golic?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. This gentleman, Ejub Golic, did you see him at the time when you
13 gathered in Susnjari prior to the departure of the column?
14 A. Yes, I did see him.
15 Q. After you had seen him there in the crowd, did you see him again
16 in the period between the 11th and the 13th when you surrendered at any
18 A. I only saw him on the 12th. When we left Susnjari, he was in the
19 last group. They separated from us. They went on and nobody see them
20 again -- saw them again.
21 Q. One more question concerning Jaglici and Susnjari. The village of
22 Jaglici and the village of Susnjari, is it true that they are located on
23 the very edge of the Srebrenica enclave as it existed in 1995?
24 A. Yes. Next to the Serb-held line, precisely on the boundary.
25 Q. When the column left Jaglici and Susnjari, it practically left the
1 area of the Srebrenica enclave; is that right?
2 A. Yes.
3 MR. LAZAREVIC: We haven't received the answer. I believe the
4 witness said -- All right, now we have it.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: It's on the transcript now. Thank you.
6 MR. LAZAREVIC:
7 Q. When the column started moving, you told us how things happened.
8 From the point of departure from Susnjari up to the point when you
9 surrendered near -- on your way, were there any attacks launched against
10 the column during the trip?
11 A. No. It was just in one brook that I saw dead bodies, but there
12 were no attacks. There were some -- there was some gunfire on the side,
13 but it wasn't directed at us.
14 Q. I, therefore, conclude from your answer that no fire was opened
15 upon your column.
16 A. Yes, there was gunfire, but we did not hear the shots, so they
17 weren't directed at us. I don't know what the shooting was about.
18 Q. Thank you. The column set out from Susnjari toward Kamenica and
19 then further on to Pobudja; right?
20 A. No. We started across the Buljim mountain from where one descends
21 to Kamenice. Kamenica is a different place. Kamenica is the Pobudja
23 Q. I wanted to know the direction. The direction was Pobudja?
24 A. Yes, towards Konjevic Polje. I can't tell you anything specific
25 about it. That was the first time I entered the Pobudja area. It was as
1 if someone had landed me there with a plane.
2 Q. For how long were you on the move before you heard shouts calling
3 to you to surrender?
4 A. We set out in the afternoon roughly 2.00 or 3.00 or 4.00. I don't
5 know, I didn't have a watch on me. And we walked for as long as we could
6 see. Then we stopped for the night, and then everything that happened
7 happened the following day.
8 Q. If I understand your testimony well, you walked one entire day,
9 then spent the night, and then a part of the following day.
10 A. No, it wasn't the entire day. We set out in the afternoon around
11 2.00 or 3.00. I'm speaking roughly. It's speculation. I didn't have a
12 watch on me. I can't tell you. And then we walked for as long as we
13 could see, because we were walking through woodland. And besides, I was
14 tired and I found a tree beneath which I laid down and spent the night
16 Q. As you were on the move in the column, were there among the people
17 in the column different opinions as to what ought to be done, whether to
18 stop or to continue moving, and so on and so forth?
19 A. Yes. I myself was of the opinion that we should not surrender.
20 However, when I realised that the majority of the people were in favour of
21 the surrender and given the fact that I was in an area that was unfamiliar
22 to me, I decided to follow suit.
23 Q. While you were on the move in the column, did you by any chance
24 notice any showdowns or -- among the people in the column; that they were
25 firing shots at each other, that somebody was perhaps throwing a grenade
1 at someone?
2 A. No. Only one thing. On the day we decided to surrender, two
3 people committed suicide. One killed himself with a grenade, and the
4 other shot himself in the temple, but I didn't see any showdowns in terms
5 of one person attacking the other or killing the other.
6 Q. Thank you. Let me ask you the following question: In answering
7 the questions put by other lawyers, you stated that on the 13th and 14th
8 of August, 1995, you gave a statement to OTP investigators. It isn't
9 necessary for you to confirm the dates, but this is the statement that you
10 gave to the investigators.
11 A. I don't recall that this was the first statement. The first
12 statement I gave was to the District Court in Tuzla. As soon as I reached
13 the free territory, I -- and I told them what I had been through, they
14 took me into a car and took me to the District Court in Tuzla and gave a
15 statement there, and it was only later on that I gave a statement to
16 international investigators.
17 Q. I'm interested in the statement that was presented to you by
18 Mr. Bourgon, and this was the statement you gave to the OTP investigators.
19 A. If that statement bears my signature, then it means that the date
20 it contains is correct. If it does not contain my signature, then the
21 date isn't correct. Ruez did take a main statement from me, and I was
22 required to place my signature on every statement.
23 Q. Very well. I think we should take a look at your statement and
24 then you can verify whether it contains your signature and then we can
25 discuss it further.
1 MR. LAZAREVIC: Your Honour, I think we should be in private
2 session because it bears the signature.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Certainly, Mr. Lazarevic.
4 [Private session]
12 [Open session]
13 JUDGE AGIUS: And we are in open session, Mr. Lazarevic.
14 MR. LAZAREVIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. Witness, can you confirm that it was you who signed this
17 A. Yes. As soon as I saw who the interpreter was, yes, I can say
18 that -- yes.
19 Q. When you were giving the statement, you were truthful in what you
20 were saying to the Prosecutors -- to the investigators?
21 A. As -- just as I am now.
22 Q. And there was no pressure by the investigators on you to leave
23 something out of the statement or to modify your statement in any way?
24 A. No. The only possibility is that there might be errors in
25 interpretation, nothing else, because nobody can interpret my words
1 exactly as I tell them, especially because it is being interpreted into
3 Q. I would now like to read one sentence from this statement. [In
4 English] In the English version, it's fifth or sixth paragraph, and it
5 says: "We were going over the mountain Buljim Planina and near the place
6 called Pobudja we heard a voice ordering through a loudspeaker:
7 'Surrender, you are surrounded.'"
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Which page are you reading from?
9 MR. LAZAREVIC: Page 2 of the witness statement. It's fifth
10 paragraph, or sixth maybe. It has capital letters, saying Buljim Planina
11 and Pobudja.
12 Q. [Interpretation] Is what I've just read out correct?
13 A. Yes, we were surrounded at Buljim. I don't know whether this was
14 this Pobudja or not, but we came across a burnt village, and wherever we
15 came across a burnt village, it was a Muslim village. I don't know how
16 long or how far Pobudja stretches out, whether it reaches Kravica or not,
17 but as we came down, we came across a river and that's where the Serb
18 soldiers were. Whether there is an asphalt road leading to Pobudja or not
19 I don't know, but in my opinion I came downhill and there was a burnt
20 village. Whether it was Sandici, Lolici, or some other village I can't be
22 Q. That's fine. You can't tell us precisely where it was that you
23 went out, and we will be content with your answer as it is.
24 A. Well, yes, that's the way it has to be.
25 Q. Not just in this statement of yours but also in the first
1 statement you gave to the District Court in Tuzla, you mentioned Pobudja.
2 A. No. I'm repeating to you: A burnt-out village. Pobudja
3 encompasses 30 small villages. My village stretches 10 kilometres, and it
4 is, of course -- bears the name as a village, but it has 30 or more
6 Q. The distance between Srebrenica and Pobudja, is it roughly 12, 13
8 A. I can't tell you. I never travelled along that road, and I can't
9 tell you. In terms of time, it didn't take very long. The terrain is
10 rugged, craggy. One had to grope around so as not to fall. I can't tell
12 Q. Therefore, the terrain itself, Sandici, Lolici, Pobudja and other
13 places, the entire area is not really familiar to you?
14 A. No. I travelled only as far as Bratunac by bus and I had never
15 been to Srebrenica either. I knew that area -- I knew the area generally
16 because I never resided there.
17 Q. In the course of your yesterday's testimony, you said that you had
18 surrendered on the road; is that correct?
19 A. Yes. I went down to the road, to the asphalt road.
20 Q. The ones who were calling out to you over a megaphone, to
21 surrender, were in fact the people you surrendered to?
22 A. I can't tell that. We went forward. We went straight ahead and
23 they were calling out on us sideways. And they were also in Buljim.
24 Q. At any rate, you surrendered yourselves to soldiers; is that
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. And those were soldiers of the Republika Srpska.
3 A. Yes, yes.
4 Q. At the point of surrender, you noticed that they had some insignia
5 on their sleeves.
6 A. Yes. When we were in lines, we saw that they had white patches
7 with four Ss, and it said "Army of Republika Srpska." There were no
8 special emblems or anything of the sort. It was just plainly written
9 "Army of Republika Srpska."
10 Q. And now could you please recall the moment as you leaving the
11 forest. You are uphill.
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. And you arrived to the edge of the forest; is that correct?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. After the edge of the forest, there is an open plain?
16 A. Those are very steep fields or meadows.
17 Q. And after that, there is a road?
18 A. Yes, a macadam road that went through those torched houses.
19 Between them, actually.
20 Q. Were there any obstacles between the brink of the forest and the
21 road itself? Were there any walls? Were -- was there any wire or
23 A. No. There was nothing. We walked normally.
24 Q. You did not cross a river?
25 A. Yes, we came down to the river, we drank water, and then the Serb
1 soldiers crossed a bridge and they waited for us on the bank of the river
2 of this side. As soon as you cross the river, there is this asphalt road.
3 I told you yesterday, and I repeat today, that this asphalt road was used
4 by the women and the children to -- to walk along.
5 Q. Yes, that's correct. When you arrived on the road, when you
6 surrendered, there were armoured vehicles. There was a tank.
7 A. Two or three armoured vehicles. One APC was up there where we
8 were sitting. It was parked beneath the people, and that soldier said,
9 "Let me not shoot you all and go straight to The Hague." He was already
10 familiar with the concept of The Hague.
11 Q. Yes. I remember you said that yesterday. At one point when you
12 arrived at that meadow, was there a changeover of some sort?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Hold on just a second. I'll put questions to you. These other
15 soldiers that replaced the ones that had been guarding you up to then, did
16 you say at any point those were Arkan's soldiers? Just say yes or no.
17 A. No. The person who told us that there would be a changeover, he
18 told us that those new people would be Arkan's men. The guy had a black
19 bandanna and said, "These men are Arkan's men." They had new camouflage
20 uniforms. I didn't see their insignia. So it was not me who said that.
21 Q. Very well, then. Let's just concentrate on part -- on a few
22 details from your statement. You are saying they had different
23 uniforms --
24 A. Yes. They had new uniforms on.
25 Q. We have just reached the end of the transcript, so this means we
1 should indeed slow down.
2 The fact that those were Arkan's men, you heard that from the
3 soldiers who had guarded you before, and based on that, you drew your
5 A. Yes, yes. He is the one who said that. If he hadn't said that,
6 we would not have known anything. He's the one who said that, on his own.
7 Q. And when you surrendered on the road and when you arrived in the
8 meadow, how much later after that was there this changeover?
9 A. Not long. Not more than an hour. And those Arkan's men, as they
10 called them, they stayed until the very end. They were there even when I
12 Q. And one more question about that. When these men, supposedly
13 Arkan's men, arrived, how did they treat you? Were they correct towards
15 A. No, they were not correct. They ordered us to lie down on our
16 bellies, on our stomachs, and then I thought they would kill us. My
17 brother-in-law had the same fate together with some five more men. They
18 ordered us to lie down on our stomachs and shout, "Long live the King."
19 Some people shouted out, some didn't. Their mouths were facing the earth
20 and they opened their mouths. And then they said, "Okay, you can stand up
21 and sit down again."
22 Q. Yes. You have already told us that. This "Long live the King,"
23 who said that? Who wanted you to shout that; the first group of people or
24 the second?
25 A. The second group of people; the Arkan's men.
1 Q. You've already testified about the moment when General Mladic came
2 and addressed you. After that, did you ever see Mladic in person?
3 A. No.
4 Q. Thank you. I have a few more questions that I would like to put
5 to you about Ejub Golic whom we have already mentioned. When did you
6 first meet Ejub Golic?
7 A. When we arrived in Srebrenica. Otherwise, I would not have met
8 him if I had not arrived in Srebrenica. That's where I met him.
9 Q. What did Ejub Golic do? What was his profession?
10 A. Before the demilitarisation, he was a commander in Glogova, and
11 later on he was just an ordinary man. He did not have any duties. He did
12 not participate in any actions. I don't know what he did. If he did
13 something illegally, I didn't know. I never asked him. Why would I?
14 Q. Very well, then. On the 12th of July, when you saw Golic in
15 Susnjari, was he armed?
16 A. He had an automatic rifle then.
17 Q. Did he wear a camouflage uniform?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Thank you.
20 MR. LAZAREVIC: Your Honours, that is our cross-examination. We
21 will have no further questions of this witness.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Mr. Lazarevic.
23 We need to plan a little bit. There are three cross-examinations
24 left. Let's start with you, Madam Fauveau. How long do you expect to be
25 asking questions, more or less?
1 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the counsel.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Your microphone, please.
3 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] About 30 minutes. This morning
4 during my colleagues' -- I think I will need 45 minutes altogether.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: And then, Mr. Krgovic?
6 MR. KRGOVIC: [Interpretation] Half an hour, Your Honour.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: And Mr. Haynes?
8 MR. HAYNES: Mr. Sarapa will be cross-examining on behalf of the
9 Pandurevic team, but we think half an hour.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: That's an hour plus 45 minutes. The reason why I
11 was asking this question was also because I would like to know whether
12 now, as we are having heard cross-examination, four cross-examinations,
13 you anticipate to have re-examination. And if that is the case, as things
14 are at the moment, how much time would you require?
15 MR. NICHOLLS: Nothing so far, Your Honour.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. So, okay. Let's start with you, Madam
17 Fauveau. I thank you all, Mr. Krgovic and Mr. Haynes.
18 Now, Madam Fauveau will be asking you some questions, Witness.
19 She is counsel for General Miletic. Thank you.
20 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
21 Cross-examination by Ms. Fauveau:
22 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, sir. I would like to ask you a few
23 questions concerning your arrival in Bratunac. Yesterday, you said that
24 when you arrived in Bratunac, you were on a truck and that you couldn't
25 see outside. Is it true? Correct?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Therefore, you couldn't see people who were approaching the truck
3 when you arrived in Bratunac; correct?
4 A. No, that's correct.
5 Q. Though yesterday you said, when Prosecution was asking you
6 questions, that you saw Serb soldiers around the vehicle. May we say that
7 indeed you have not seen these men?
8 A. No, no. I didn't see them. They were around the truck. I told
9 you that the sides of my truck were rather high, about a metre high, and
10 on top of that, nobody dared as much as put their hand on the sides of the
11 truck. I never told you that I saw them. I only heard the soldiers.
12 Only if a soldier jumped on the trailer, then you could see them.
13 Otherwise, we could not see the soldiers, we could only hear them.
14 Q. But those men who got near the vehicle, do you know if they
15 belonged to the army or were paramilitaries or policemen, police agents,
16 or were civilian? Do you know?
17 A. I don't know who they are. I only know that they committed
18 genocide. I didn't see any uniforms. Those who jumped on the trailer
19 were soldiers. They were soldiers because they wore camouflage uniforms.
20 Q. How do you know they had camouflage uniforms since you couldn't
21 see anything?
22 A. No. Only those who jumped, who would jump on the trailer and
23 peeked into the trailer, then one could see that that person was a
24 soldier. And I don't know about the rest. There may have even been
25 civilians. There were cases when civilians were brutal towards the
2 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... truck, the truck you were?
3 Nobody came in the truck you were?
4 A. No.
5 Q. Therefore, during that night you couldn't see anybody in a
6 camouflage uniform, did you?
7 A. I did. I did. A man came after some time and asked if there was
8 somebody from Srebrenica in my truck. A person got up on his feet. I
9 know his name. I know this person's name. Why? Why?
10 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... you said that was at dawn. I
11 agree with you, but for the moment I'm talking about night.
12 A. No, no, ma'am. At dawn was the time when the people were taken
13 out. During the night - and I told you that yesterday and I repeat it
14 today - a Serb soldier came, climbed onto the trailer, asked if there was
15 somebody from Srebrenica on the truck. A person stood up and said, "I am
16 from Srebrenica." "Which village are you from?" He said from Ljeskovik.
17 They didn't want him because he came from Ljeskovik, and that person came
18 together with me into that sports hall in Orahovac. On the following day
19 they did take out two men from the truck.
20 MR. NICHOLLS: Sorry, Your Honour. That reference he's speaking
21 about is page 45, line 14, of the soldier coming at night.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Mr. Nicholls.
23 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation]
24 Q. During that night, therefore, you didn't see anybody bring
25 anything to the truck?
1 A. No.
2 Q. Yesterday, you were spoke -- you spoke about a garage close to the
3 truck; correct?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. But you couldn't see this garage?
6 A. The person who came told us that. I could see one part of the
7 building, but I didn't know what Vihor's garage was. I wasn't familiar
8 with the building. The man who was a driver told us that there's where
9 Vihor's garage is. I didn't see any inscription, any sign on it; I just
10 go by that man's words.
11 Q. And you couldn't see the entrance to this garage; correct? Any
12 door to this garage; correct?
13 A. No. It was not far, but we didn't dare look. One could hear
14 wailing and shots and screams, but I did not dare lift my head to peek
15 over the sides. If I had done that, God knows what would have happened to
17 Q. Sir, my question was did you manage to see a door, an entrance to
18 the garage?
19 MR. NICHOLLS: Your Honour, that's been asked and answered. He's
20 already made it very clear --
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, no.
22 MR. NICHOLLS: [Previous translation continues] ... at all.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Nicholls, please wait until we give you the
25 MR. NICHOLLS: I'm sorry. I apologise.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Ms. Fauveau, please.
2 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation]
3 Q. Therefore, you couldn't see that somebody was taken into the
5 A. No, no. We could not see anybody being taken into the garage. We
6 could just hear thuds, we could hear screams after that, and then we could
7 shouts, "Stop it, stop it," and then we would hear bursts of fire and the
8 men would be quiet. And that's how it continued up to the dawn.
9 Q. You spoke about a person who was brought to your truck at dawn.
10 Is it true to say after the departure of these two people from your truck
11 you didn't hear any shooting any more?
12 A. No. Two men were taken away, none of them were brought back, and
13 then we could no longer hear bursts of fire.
14 Q. You did say that you didn't hear any shooting; is that right?
15 A. Yes. The two men that were taken away, we no longer heard shots
16 because the vehicles were leaving at the point -- at that point.
17 Q. And you have no idea of what happened to these two men?
18 A. No. No. Most probably what happened --
19 Q. I don't ask you to speculate, Witness.
20 A. No, no. I'm not speculating. These people probably ended up
21 like --
22 Q. I'm not asking you. I just want to know -- I'm just asking you
23 what you know.
24 Yesterday, in your testimony, you said that the entire population
25 left Srebrenica on the 11th of July; is that right?
1 A. Yes. They did not leave. They left to Potocari, across the
2 forest, but they were leaving over the course of a couple of days. They
3 could not all leave in just one day. You know what Ratko Mladic did? He
4 kept the civilians hostage, then he killed all the able-bodied men, and
5 then he sent the others away.
6 Q. You also said yesterday that the women, the children, and the
7 elderly went off to Potocari; is that right?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. And you, the able-bodied men, you went in the direction of
10 Susnjari to form this column; is that right?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Could you tell us who decided that the population was going to
13 leave Srebrenica?
14 A. I don't know. The people started moving, and when people started
15 moving, you know how it is. I suppose they received news from the
16 UNPROFOR. Before noon, the UNPROFOR was telling us that they were
17 negotiating with the Serbs, and then this was a hope for us that we stood
18 a chance of survival. This fell through, and then people received news -
19 I don't know who from - that women, children, and the elderly have to go
20 to Potocari and there is -- wherever they could. In other words, they
21 were to look for the free territory on their own, by their own means.
22 Q. Are you saying that it was UNPROFOR representatives who told you
23 that you should go to Susnjari and not to Potocari and not go elsewhere;
24 is that right?
25 A. Who am I to be told anything by UNPROFOR? I was just an ordinary
1 person. I had nothing whatsoever to do with UNPROFOR. I never spoke to
2 any members of the UNPROFOR. I don't speak the language. How could they
3 tell me anything? Maybe they told me somebody else who could convey this
4 message to the people that we should all go to the free territory, and the
5 only way out was towards Susnjari.
6 Q. Whatever the case might be, the decision to leave for Srebrenica
7 under the direction of Susnjari was not a spontaneous decision. It's
8 somebody who told you to do so, not you personally, but somebody decided
9 this, in other words, that all the able-bodied men were to go in the
10 direction of Susnjari?
11 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment. Yes, Mr. Nicholls.
12 MR. NICHOLLS: I think he's answered this question as well as she
13 can -- as he can. My colleague asked him not to speculate, and he said
14 what he knows and what he was able to tell.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: I think you are right. I think you are right,
16 Mr. Nicholls.
17 I think this matter has been exhausted already, and he's given you
18 his answer, Ms. Fauveau. You could proceed to something different,
20 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Your Honour, may I read out to the
1 [Private session]
11 Pages 815-825 redacted. Private session.
11 [Open session]
12 JUDGE AGIUS: We have about 13, 15 minutes to go. Well, just a
13 little bit less than that, but we have got two other lawyers that need to
14 ask you questions, and each one has asked for 30 minutes. That's an hour.
15 I'm leaving the decision open. I will let you choose. Do you wish to
16 stop for today and we continue on Monday, or do you wish to have a short
17 break and then we continue for at least one other hour?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Sir, Mr. President, I really find
19 this difficult, and my head is in confusion, and I really have to take a
20 rest, and I would like to continue on Monday.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. No. The last thing is to have a witness
22 testify with confusion in his mind. That's the important thing, that you
23 need to relax now. You have got a whole weekend, an entire weekend during
24 which you are not to communicate with anyone on the subject matter of your
25 testimony or the events that we're talking about. Do you understand me?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I understand, Mr. President.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. So -- and that includes whoever you happen to
3 meet and say hello to. Don't let anyone approach you or discuss with you
4 the subject matter of these proceedings.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Madam Fauveau. I still see you standing up.
7 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. I would like to
8 address the Trial Chamber, please, but I would not wish the witness to be
10 JUDGE AGIUS: I think the witness can be escorted out. So we'll
11 see you on Monday morning.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
13 [The witness stood down]
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Madam Fauveau.
15 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I would like to say
16 that I have a task to accomplish here, which I'm sure you have noticed. I
17 feel that the objections raised by the Prosecutor is not very pleasant.
18 It's no piece of cake. But it's something that we need to do. If the
19 Prosecutor has no witness that can withstand the examination, the
20 questions put during the cross-examination. I don't think it's for the
21 Defence counsel that has to bear the consequences of this.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't think you need to respond to that. I would
23 just suggest that we have all lived several trials in our careers, in our
24 respective careers. This is bound to happen. It will get worse and it
25 will get even worse. As you all know, there will be witnesses who can
1 take it, witnesses who can't, witnesses who will react, and others that
2 will be a little bit more clever than that. But for the time being, I
3 suggest that you have trust in us. We are as strained as you are, at
4 least, so we can manage the situation.
5 What I wanted to be assured of is that one of our tasks is to make
6 sure that you are protected at all times. There is no way we will let
7 witnesses abuse of your offices. So we will protect you as much as we
8 will protect the members of the Prosecution team, but I suggest that you
9 leave it in our hands. I think we are perfectly capable of managing the
11 Yes, Madam Fauveau.
12 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] I would just like to thank you for
13 your kind words. We have total -- we fully trust the Chamber.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: I'm sure you do, having worked with you before.
15 Yes, Mr. Nicholls.
16 MR. NICHOLLS: I'm not -- I'm not complaining or objecting in any
17 way. This is the first witness. I just wanted to note --
18 JUDGE AGIUS: That's another thing.
19 MR. NICHOLLS: -- there were some things, like the way the column
20 left and went to Susnjari and the directions which I think could have been
21 covered by one cross. I mean, that repeated quite a bit, which, again,
22 that's going to happen; it's the first witness. But that's, I think, the
23 kind of thing which could shorten things if one person handles it.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: I'll speak for myself here because obviously I
25 haven't consulted on this particular point that you have raised now with
1 my colleagues. But to me, at least, there has been some overlapping, yes,
2 from one cross-examination to the other, and we haven't seen it all as
3 yet, but it has been minimal. It has been minimal. So we have agreed
4 also to go through this exercise for some time on a trial and error basis
5 so that we'll be able to gauge it properly later on, after -- after a
6 period of time.
7 I think, considering that we are with the first witness, as you
8 just pointed out, and that he is not an easy witness, I think we need to
9 be patient, and everyone needs to exercise as much restraint as possible,
10 and I'm not saying that you haven't, but it's important with these
11 witnesses to be -- everyone must keep his or her cool and show a lot of
12 understanding and a lot of savoir-faire at the same time. All right?
13 Which I think hasn't been lacking, but we've just started. The atmosphere
14 is a little bit electrified, I must admit. What is important also from
15 our side is that as we go along we'll try and build an environment,
16 working environment, where you can work and we can work. Otherwise, if it
17 becomes too antagonistic, then I suppose that everyone will then have to
18 bear the consequences because it will become bad for everyone. And you
19 all know what I mean; where it becomes bad, it is indeed bad. So -- but
20 I'm sure that it's in everybody's interest to keep -- keep calm and be
21 pragmatic. All right? Thank you. Especially in such a big case like
23 Thanks a lot. Enjoy the weekend, and we'll meet again on Monday
25 Yes, Mr. Meek?
1 MR. MEEK: Is it Monday morning or Monday afternoon?
2 JUDGE AGIUS: I think it's Monday morning, and then the rest of
3 the week it's in the afternoon. That's my impression. I stand to be
4 corrected if I'm making a mistake.
5 THE REGISTRAR: Yes, it is, Your Honour.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Thanks a lot. Have a nice weekend.
7 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.38 p.m.,
8 to be reconvened on Monday, the 28th day
9 of August, 2006, at 9.00 a.m.