1 Monday, 15 September 2008
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.04 a.m.
5 JUDGE KWON: Good morning, everybody. We'll continue to sit
6 pursuant to 15 bis in the absence of Judge Agius. I hope he will join us
8 I was informed there are some preliminaries to be raised by any
9 parties? Yes, Mr. Gosnell.
10 MR. GOSNELL: Well, Your Honour, if I may, I have the pleasure of
11 introducing a new member of our team, Mr. Bozidar Vulic, who recently
12 joined us a case manager. Thank you.
13 JUDGE KWON: Taking this opportunity, there are a couple of
14 housekeeping matters that may be dealt with now. I referred to the
15 28th of July, the Chamber decision on Nikolic's Rule 92 bis request.
16 There we provisionally admitted two statements pending the -- pending
17 their receipt in a form compliant with the requirements of the rules. On
18 8th of September we received those statements and we reviewed the two
19 attachment statement and in the view of the Chamber they comply with the
20 rules so they are admitted.
21 And as for the subpoena motion, in the light -- in view of the
22 Prosecution's position and considering the matter that the subpoena
23 decision will be issued in due course sometime during the course of
25 Now, Madam Nikolic, is the time for you to open your case, but my
1 understanding is that you will not make an opening statement but I'm not
2 sure whether your client will make one.
3 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, at this moment at the
4 opening of our case, my client will not provide any statements nor will
5 the Defence because we already did so at the beginning of the
6 proceedings. However, since you gave me the floor, on behalf of my team,
7 I wanted to announce the opening of our Defence case which will consist
8 of 22 witnesses. Should there be any changes, we will, of course, notify
9 you in due course.
10 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Madam Nikolic. Call your first witness.
11 Mr. McCloskey.
12 MR. McCLOSKEY: Good morning, Mr. President, Your Honours. I
13 spoke briefly to Mr. Bourgon, this first witness will be talking about
14 events at Orahovac that he appears to suggest he is deeply involved in,
15 as such, a caution may be in order.
16 JUDGE KWON: By the way, if you could remind me of whether this
17 witness is a protected one?
18 MR. BOURGON: Good morning, Mr. President. Good morning, Judges.
19 Good morning, colleagues. The first one indeed is a protected witness.
20 His number is 3DPW 10. I did speak with my colleague concerning the need
21 for a caution and we, of course, have no objection in the Trial Chamber
22 issuing this caution to him. Thank you, Mr. President.
23 JUDGE KWON: What protective measures were allowed to him?
24 MR. BOURGON: Facial distortion, voice distortion, as well as
1 JUDGE KWON: PW -- 3DPW 10 is not a 65 ter number but --
2 MR. BOURGON: It is the actual number --
3 JUDGE KWON: -- the pseudonym number.
4 MR. BOURGON: It is the pseudonym we will be using,
5 Mr. President. Mr. President, if I may clarify, on our Rule 65 ter list
6 we've been using 3DW 10 and because this one is protected, the P is
7 added. That's the only change. We wanted to keep the same number so
8 there would be no confusion. All witnesses keep the same numbers and
9 it's easier for everybody.
10 JUDGE KWON: We need to draw the curtain in order to bring in the
11 witness. Thank you, Mr. Josse, for your cooperation.
12 MR. JOSSE: I like to do something useful in this Court for
13 Your Honours.
14 [The witness entered court]
15 JUDGE KWON: Good morning, sir.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning.
17 JUDGE KWON: If you would take the solemn declaration.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
19 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
20 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. You may be seated.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
22 WITNESS: WITNESS 3DPW 10
23 [Witness answered through interpreter]
24 JUDGE KWON: Curtains. Mr. Witness, as you might have been
25 explained -- to you explained that you are given a certain measures of
1 your protection so you will be called by a pseudonym which is Witness
2 PW number 10, and you will not be seen outside by the people outside this
3 courtroom. And your voice will be distorted, therefore the people
4 outside this courtroom will not hear actual voice. So whenever you are
5 about to say something which -- that will reveal your identity, you have
6 to ask us to go into private session so that people outside the courtroom
7 cannot follow. Do you understand that?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I do.
9 JUDGE KWON: There's one further matter I'd like to tell you
10 about is that your right to object to make statement which might tend to
11 incriminate yourself. You have the right not to give testimony or refuse
12 to give testimony which will tend to incriminate you. Have you heard
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
15 JUDGE KWON: However, in such a case, this Chamber may compel you
16 to answer the question if, in the Chamber's view, it is necessary and it
17 will be in the interest of justice to require you to answer the question.
18 However, testimony compelled in that way shall not be used as evidence in
19 a subsequent prosecution against yourself for any offence except when you
20 have given a false testimony. Do you understand that?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I do.
22 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Mr. Bourgon, the witness is all yours.
23 MR. BOURGON: Thank you Mr. President.
24 Examination by Mr. Bourgon:
25 Q. Good morning, Witness.
1 A. Good morning.
2 Q. For the record, allow me to introduce myself. My name is
3 Stephane Bourgon and along with my colleagues, Mrs. Jelena Nikolic and
4 Ms. Marie-Claude Fournie, we represent Drago Nikolic in these
5 proceedings. Before we begin, can you confirm that we did have the
6 opportunity to meet yesterday.
7 A. Yes, certainly.
8 Q. And can you confirm that yesterday when we met, I informed you
9 that you had been granted protective measures?
10 A. Yes, I can.
11 Q. And also that I explained to you those protective measures, as
12 the Presiding Judge mentioned them today, of facial and voice distortion,
13 as well as the pseudonym that I will be using, and I explained to you
14 what that means. Do you recall that, sir?
15 A. Yes, I do.
16 Q. So as the Presiding Judge mentioned to you, today I will be
17 referring to you as "sir" and in the record you will be known as
18 Witness 3DPW 10. Do you understand that, sir?
19 A. I do.
20 Q. So in other words, no one will know your identity and as the
21 Presiding Judge said, every time there is a possibility of identifying
22 you, we will move in private session and I explained to you what that
23 means. Do you recall this, sir?
24 A. I do.
25 Q. At this point in time I will ask the usher to show you a
1 document. Without saying anything, can you please look at this document.
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Without mentioning your name, can you confirm that it is your
4 name that appears on this document?
5 A. It is.
6 MR. BOURGON: Mr. President, this document will bear the number
7 3D482. I ask the court usher to show it to my colleague from the
8 Prosecution and it will be introduced into e-court as soon as possible.
9 Q. Sir, before we begin I take this opportunity to remind you, as we
10 discussed yesterday, that if at any time you feel tired or you don't feel
11 well, do not hesitate to let me know and we will ask the Presiding Judge
12 for a break. Do you understand that?
13 A. Yes, I do.
14 Q. My first question for you this morning is the following: Can you
15 confirm that during the past year or so you met where either myself or
16 other members of the Defence team of Drago Nikolic on a few occasions?
17 A. Yes, I can.
18 Q. And can you confirm that you provided a statement which you
19 signed on 16 March 2007
20 A. Yes, I can.
21 MR. BOURGON: Mr. President, at this time if I can ask to move
22 into private session, please.
23 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
24 [Private session]
11 Pages 25658-25660 redacted. Private session.
22 [Open session]
23 MR. BOURGON: Thank you.
24 Q. Sir, do you remember what was happening in July 1995, after the
25 fall of Srebrenica?
1 A. I remember Orahovac.
2 Q. Did you go to Orahovac on a particular day?
3 A. I don't know what date it was, but I went there pursuant to
4 Obradovic's orders.
5 Q. And do you remember at what time you went there, to Orahovac?
6 A. I think it was in the afternoon, around 4 or 5 o'clock.
7 Q. And do you remember what you were doing that day before going to
9 A. I was at Snagovo; I forgot why, though. I think I went there to
10 pick something up. When I came back from Snagovo, I reported there and
11 Radivoje Obradovic urgently sent me to Orahovac.
12 Q. And what were you supposed to do in Orahovac?
13 A. I was told to take some people for an exchange.
14 Q. And did you know who those people were that should be exchanged?
15 A. No, I did not.
16 Q. And what truck were you driving that day, if you remember?
17 A. I was driving a 2-tonne truck, the TAM-type truck.
18 Q. Can you describe this truck for us?
19 A. Yes, I can. My truck had a place for a driver and the co-driver,
20 and between the driver and the co-driver was the engine. At the back
21 there was a partition which was about half a metre high, like this, and
22 behind that there was a bench with three seats. Under the bench, under
23 the seats, you had the heating system for winter or for heating in
25 Q. And the rest of the truck, sir, how did it look like?
1 A. The rest of the truck was the body work and it was covered with a
3 Q. And how big was that part of the truck?
4 A. I think it was about 2 and a half metres wide and 3 metres long,
6 Q. And what colour was your truck?
7 A. It was the olive green SMB colour.
8 Q. Did you sometimes transport people with that truck?
9 A. Yes, I did.
10 Q. How many persons could fit in the back of your truck?
11 Approximately, if you remember.
12 A. About 15.
13 Q. You mentioned that you went to Orahovac, where exactly did you go
14 in Orahovac on that day?
15 A. I went to the school.
16 Q. Can you describe the road that you took between the
17 Zvornik Brigade and Orahovac?
18 A. I took the road from the command towards Karakaj, from Karakaj to
20 Q. When you arrived in Orahovac, what is the first thing that you
22 A. I saw lots of soldiers and civilians too.
23 Q. Who were these soldiers that you saw?
24 A. I don't know.
25 Q. Do you know from which brigade these soldiers were?
1 A. No, I don't.
2 Q. So what happened when you arrived at the school?
3 A. Some people turned up and said where have you been, what have you
4 been doing. You know you have to take the soldiers to be exchanged and
5 there were people who were dead, who had died.
6 Q. What was the attitude of these people towards you at that time?
7 A. Impolite.
8 Q. And did the soldiers tell you exactly what you had to transport?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And what was that?
11 A. I parked my vehicle up at the door where they told me to park. I
12 don't know what they loaded up because I didn't get out of the truck.
13 Q. Can you explain exactly where they told you to park your truck?
14 A. At the door to the hall. The back part.
15 Q. Where was the back of your truck parked against? Where in the
17 A. In front of the door.
18 Q. And did you know this -- which door that was?
19 A. No, I did not.
20 Q. And did you get out of your truck at that time?
21 A. They didn't let me.
22 Q. What can you tell us about what was loaded on your truck?
23 A. I don't know what they were loading up. I just felt the motion
24 of the truck rocking as they were loading up.
25 Q. And did they tell you anything at that time?
1 A. When they had finished loading, they told me to go to Krizevici,
2 towards Krizevici and Kitovnica.
3 Q. And before you left, did they tell you to do anything with your
5 A. They told me to drive fast. I didn't dare ask why, just press
6 the pedal and drive fast. They told me to step on it.
7 Q. I'm not sure I'm getting the right interpretation. Can you
8 describe, were you supposed to drive fast or to step on the gas, I'm not
9 sure, can you explain?
10 A. I hadn't started yet but I had stepped on the gas. While I was
11 still parking they said, Step on the gas, step on the gas.
12 Q. And what was the tone of the voice of these people who were
13 telling you to do these things?
14 A. With raised voices.
15 Q. And did you get out of your truck at that time?
16 A. No, I did not.
17 Q. And how did you feel towards those people who told you to load
18 your truck?
19 A. I was appalled.
20 Q. You mentioned that they told you to drive towards Krizevici, so
21 what happened then?
22 A. They told me to drive towards Krizevici and Kitovnica. And I set
23 out and I was driving -- I had driven for about 100 or 150 metres and
24 somebody waved to me along the way to stop, so I stopped. And when I
25 looked, there were two soldiers running with a rifle. When they came up
1 to me they said, Where are you going without an escort. Well, I didn't
2 know that I was supposed to have an escort and that I was supposed to
3 drive slowly. When they came up to me, they jumped up on to the truck
4 and we continued our way towards Krizevici and Kitovnica.
5 Q. In which part of the truck did these soldiers jump into?
6 A. Behind, in the truck behind.
7 Q. Did you recognise these soldiers?
8 A. No, I did not.
9 Q. And after these soldiers got on your truck, what happened?
10 A. We continued driving towards Krizevici and Kitovnica.
11 Q. And then?
12 A. Then we arrived at a point, a checkpoint where they stopped me,
13 three men, three soldiers stopped me. They were wearing camouflage
14 uniforms and they told me to move left off the road. I assume that there
15 was a policeman that was -- there was some police there, too, because
16 traffic had been stopped as well for the other vehicles.
17 Q. Do you know if these people were soldiers or policemen?
18 A. I think they were soldiers wearing camouflage uniforms, but the
19 police would wear camouflage uniforms too.
20 Q. Did you notice anything particular on these three soldiers, like
21 white belts or armbands, for example?
22 A. No. No, I didn't.
23 Q. So what happened once you turned left and you went off the road?
24 A. I didn't understand the question.
25 Q. Once those three soldiers told you to turn left, where did you
2 A. I went to the left towards the railway line.
3 Q. Who directed -- who told you where to go?
4 A. The three of them. The three of them who told me to get off the
6 Q. What happened then?
7 A. I went below the railway line and the passover there, and I saw a
8 group of soldiers there.
9 Q. How many soldiers were there, to the best of your recollection?
10 A. About ten soldiers. I can't tell you exactly but about ten,
11 perhaps a little more.
12 Q. And did you recognise these soldiers?
13 A. No, I didn't.
14 Q. And how were they dressed?
15 A. They had soldiers uniforms on, camouflage.
16 Q. Now, just to clarify, did you go on the other side of the railway
18 A. Yes. Underneath.
19 Q. And what happened when you were on the other side of the railway
21 A. I saw those soldiers, and they told me to turn around in front of
22 them and to stop.
23 Q. And once you stopped, did you get out of your truck?
24 A. I started getting out but they wouldn't let me.
25 Q. And what happened?
1 A. I heard them open a side of the truck and they called, Get out,
2 get out, get out.
3 Q. Did you see the people get out of your truck?
4 A. No, I didn't. I could just feel the movement of the truck.
5 MR. McCLOSKEY: It's leading. Thus far there has never been any
6 mention of people.
7 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Bourgon.
8 MR. BOURGON: I rephrase my question, Mr. President.
9 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
10 MR. BOURGON:
11 Q. What was taken out of your truck, if you know, at that moment?
12 A. Probably soldiers.
13 Q. So when they were yelling, Get out, get out, get out, it was
14 probably after packages. That's for my colleague, Mr. President.
15 MR. BOURGON:
16 Q. What happened next, Mr. Witness?
17 JUDGE KWON: Just a second.
18 MR. McCLOSKEY: I hope we won't, at this critical juncture, try
19 to do this. I don't understand what he is trying to do but if he could
20 just please ask normal questions.
21 MR. BOURGON: Mr. President, it was very clear what was
22 happening. It was not a leading question. The witness had mentioned get
24 MR. McCLOSKEY: I'm going to object now. I do not want any
25 comments to the witness. It's not clear what is happening and I think
1 it's up for the witness to tell us. This is so obvious that it's beyond
3 JUDGE KWON: Just for a moment.
4 [Trial Chamber confers]
5 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Bourgon, the Chamber will not be benefitted with
6 your editorial comment, but if you could clarify what the witness, when
7 he answered it would be "probably soldiers" that were taken out of your
8 truck. If you could start from there.
9 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President.
10 Q. Sir, you mentioned a little earlier that it would probably be
11 soldiers that were taken out of your truck. Can you just tell us exactly
12 what happened, to the best of your recollection, and what you saw at that
14 A. I was told that I was driving soldiers which meant that it was
15 soldiers that were getting out of the truck. I was driving soldiers not
16 packages. So you couldn't have packages come out of a truck when they
17 said, Get out, get out. It meant the soldiers. It referred to the
18 soldiers, not packages.
19 Q. Thank you. Sir, did you see any other trucks doing the same kind
20 of transport you were doing?
21 A. Yes, I did.
22 Q. Can you tell us how many or what kind of trucks?
23 A. One truck -- well, I don't know what type of truck it was but it
24 was a large truck and it was going about its job. The other one was a
25 Zastava truck. I didn't see whether that one was doing anything or not.
1 Q. The first truck you mentioned, that you don't know what type of
2 truck it was, was it larger than your truck or same size?
3 A. It was larger than mine.
4 Q. Did you see this -- what was this truck driving, where it was
6 A. It was transporting from the same place to the same place, from
7 where I had come.
8 Q. And the Zastava truck you mentioned, was that bigger or what size
9 compared to your truck?
10 A. It had the same bearing capacity but not two cabins.
11 Q. Did you see this truck transport anything on that date?
12 A. No, I didn't.
13 Q. When you drove your first trip towards the water point, do you
14 know if the transport of prisoners had begun at that time?
15 A. I didn't.
16 Q. You explained to us what -- when your truck was loaded, the way
17 it was loaded. Was it always loaded at the same place at the school?
18 MR. McCLOSKEY: Objection, that is leading. We don't even have
19 him back at the school yet.
20 MR. BOURGON: I will rephrase my question, Mr. President.
21 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
22 MR. BOURGON:
23 Q. After you unloaded your truck at that place, what happened?
24 A. I went back to the same place.
25 Q. And who told you to go back to the same place?
1 A. The people who had been loading up the truck.
2 Q. And when you left that place, did you see what happened to those
3 soldiers who were taken off your truck?
4 A. I didn't see.
5 Q. And when you got back to the school, what happened to you? On
6 that first trip when you returned to the school, what were you told to
8 A. To park the truck in the same spot I had parked previously.
9 Q. And how many trips did you do to that area that you describe?
10 A. I don't know. I can't remember. But in my opinion, five or six
11 tours, five or six trips. Perhaps one or two less or more.
12 Q. And when your truck was loaded at the school, was it always
13 loaded at the same door?
14 MR. McCLOSKEY: Objection. We don't have him establishing that
15 anything has been loaded except the one time.
16 [Trial Chamber confers]
17 JUDGE KWON: Mr. McCloskey's objection may be technically
18 correct. If you could carry on or rephrase your question.
19 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President.
20 Q. Sir, when you returned to the school the first time, after
21 unloading your truck at that area, was anything put on your truck before
22 you returned?
23 A. No.
24 Q. Maybe I will clarify my question. You said that your truck was
25 unloaded, that's on the other side of the water point?
1 A. The first time.
2 Q. I'm just looking at when you did those trips, what were you
3 transporting on all of these trips, to your knowledge?
4 A. Soldiers.
5 Q. And when you loaded those soldiers at the school, or did you
6 always load the soldiers at the same place?
7 A. The same place, yes.
8 Q. And the second truck that you saw, did you see where it was being
10 A. The same place.
11 Q. And did you see that second truck being loaded at any other
13 A. No.
14 Q. And when you drove to that area, did you notice at any time --
15 sorry, I will say that question over again.
16 When you were driving to that area did you see, at any time,
17 vehicle escorts?
18 A. No, I didn't.
19 Q. Now, I'd like you to think back to that first trip, and my
20 question is, did you understand what was going on at that time?
21 A. No, I didn't.
22 Q. When did you understand what was going on, or did you understand
23 what was going on at some point?
24 A. I understood too late what had happened, and I was very shaken by
1 Q. Did you see -- so what is it that you found out was happening or
2 that you thought was happening?
3 A. I saw several dead people.
4 Q. Did you see any prisoners being executed?
5 A. No, I didn't. No, I didn't see that.
6 Q. And where did you see those dead people?
7 A. By the roadside.
8 Q. Is that on the other side of the railway track, or on this side?
9 A. On this side of the railway track.
10 Q. How did you feel at that time when you saw those bodies?
11 A. I wanted to die from the terror of it.
12 Q. Did you see any bodies on the other side of the railway track?
13 A. No, I didn't.
14 Q. At this area which you describe, where you went, do you remember
15 in how many different places your vehicle was unloaded?
16 A. In two places.
17 Q. Can you tell us what places these are?
18 A. Across from the railway track and underneath the railway track.
19 Q. I'm not sure I understand your answer. Can you maybe give us a
20 bit more information because across the railway track and underneath
21 would appear to me to be the same place. Can you tell us again where
22 your truck was unloaded, which two areas?
23 A. Underneath the passover when I was passing through, and before
24 the railway track in front of it.
25 Q. Now, I know this is difficult but how many bodies did you see?
1 How many dead bodies?
2 A. Quite a few of them.
3 Q. Did you see any other vehicles close to the water point or on the
4 other side of the underpass?
5 A. No.
6 Q. Do you remember seeing any heavy equipment either at the water
7 point or on the other side of the underpass?
8 A. I did.
9 Q. Can you describe what you saw?
10 A. We referred to it as a digger, a machine of sorts.
11 Q. Do you remember the colour?
12 A. Orange
13 Q. And where was this?
14 A. Across the railway tracks.
15 Q. And who, if you remember, was operating this machinery?
16 A. I don't know. I didn't see.
17 MR. BOURGON: Mr. President, at this time I would like to move
18 into private session.
19 JUDGE KWON: Before that, the witness answered that he understood
20 too late what was going on at the time. If you could clarify what the
21 witness -- too late, when. When he first realized what was going on.
22 MR. BOURGON: I was -- my aim was to cover that a little later in
23 my examination-in-chief.
24 JUDGE KWON: Very well.
25 MR. BOURGON: I can ask the question right away to please the
2 JUDGE KWON: If you wish.
3 MR. BOURGON:
4 Q. Sir, what do you mean by -- when you said that you realized too
5 late what was going on?
6 A. Well, it was after three or four rounds, that's when I saw that,
7 that's when I realized it. Not before that. So when half of the job had
8 already been done.
9 Q. And at that point, sir, did you have a choice to continue or to
11 A. I didn't have a choice.
12 MR. BOURGON: If we can move into private session, Mr. President.
13 JUDGE KWON: Yes. Yes, we are now in private session.
14 [Private session]
11 Pages 25676-25678 redacted. Private session.
4 [Open session]
5 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President.
6 Q. When you returned to Standard, did you meet anybody there?
7 A. No, no one.
8 Q. Do you remember where you slept that night?
9 A. Take my word for it, I don't remember it. It is most likely that
10 I slept at Standard. I think so, at least.
11 Q. How did you feel that night, sir?
12 A. I was very tired and I ached inside.
13 Q. Did you do any driving the next day, if you remember?
14 A. I don't remember. I might have, but I don't know at this point.
15 Q. And either the next day or in the following days, did you
16 transport any prisoners again?
17 A. No, I did not.
18 Q. And did you report what happened in Orahovac that day to anyone?
19 A. I did not.
20 Q. Why not, sir?
21 A. I felt ashamed, ashamed to even talk about it.
22 Q. Sir, do you know who is Djoko Gotovac?
23 A. Djoko Gotovac was a driver, like the rest of us.
24 Q. In the days after these events in Orahovac, did you see
25 Djoko Gotovac either at Standard or elsewhere?
1 A. To tell you the truth, I did not see him anymore in the next few
2 days after the event.
3 Q. And did you speak to him about these events at any time?
4 A. No, never. Not until -- I never did and I didn't feel like it.
5 Q. Sir, do you know who is -- at that time, did you know who was
6 Drago Nikolic?
7 A. I did.
8 Q. How much did you know of him?
9 A. Not much.
10 Q. At that time were you able to recognise Drago Nikolic?
11 A. I was.
12 Q. Why is that?
13 A. Because, how should I put it, well, I can recognise him. He is
14 middle aged, of mid height, grey hair.
15 Q. On this day that you went to Orahovac, did you see Drago Nikolic
16 at any time close to the Orahovac school?
17 A. I did not.
18 Q. On that day, I'm talking about the Orahovac events, did you see
19 him at any time close to the water point or on the other side of the
21 A. I didn't see him anywhere.
22 Q. Sir, do you know what car Drago Nikolic was driving at that time?
23 A. I saw him driving a Mercedes. I don't know whether it belonged
24 to him or someone else.
25 Q. Was it at the same time as these events?
1 A. Before that, not then.
2 Q. And during these events or after the fall of Srebrenica, do you
3 know what vehicle he was using?
4 A. I don't.
5 MR. BOURGON: I will now ask the court usher to give you a
6 document. Mr. President, I would like the witness to mark a document but
7 instead of doing it on the screen, I spoke with my colleague from the
8 Prosecution and it would be better to do it on paper using the ELMO
9 because the witness feels much more comfortable with paper than with a
11 JUDGE KWON: Yes, understandable.
12 MR. BOURGON:
13 Q. Sir, I will put a -- the court usher will put a sketch beside
15 MR. BOURGON: For the record, Mr. President, this is a copy of
16 Exhibit 3D84.
17 JUDGE KWON: Which has been already admitted?
18 MR. BOURGON: Indeed, Mr. President. I will ask the witness to
19 make some markings on it and to introduce it with an IC number.
20 Q. Sir, do you recognise -- do you recognise what this is, sir?
21 A. The school in Orahovac.
22 Q. Now, the usher will give you a pen and I will ask you to make
23 some markings on this sketch. Do you understand that?
24 A. I do.
25 Q. Can you put the number 1 beside or on the Orahovac school?
1 A. [Marks]
2 Q. Can you put a circle around this 1.
3 A. [Marks]
4 Q. Can you now put the number 2 on the gymnasium of the school?
5 A. [Marks]
6 Q. And again put a circle around the 2.
7 A. [Marks]
8 Q. Can you write the number 3 where your vehicle was loaded.
9 A. [Marks]
10 Q. And again a circle around the 3.
11 A. [Marks]
12 Q. Can you draw an arrow on the road pointing towards Zvornik?
13 A. [Marks]
14 Q. And beside this arrow, write the number 4 with a circle around
16 A. [Marks]
17 Q. Can you now draw an arrow on the road pointing towards the water
19 A. [Marks]
20 Q. And beside this arrow, write the number 5 with a circle around
22 A. [Marks]
23 MR. BOURGON: Mr. President, if I can move in private session for
24 a few minutes.
25 [Private session]
19 [Open session]
20 JUDGE KWON: Yes, we are back in open session.
21 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President.
22 Q. Sir, can you put at the bottom of this sketch today's date, which
23 is the 15th September 2008
24 on this sketch, at the bottom of the sketch today's date.
25 A. [Marks]
1 Q. And above the date, can you put your witness number which is
2 3D as in Delta, P as in Papa, W as in Whiskey, and the number 10.
3 Sir, I'd just like to come back to, for my last question,
4 something that you said earlier from my colleague that was on page 13,
5 lines 1 to 3.
6 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Josse.
7 MR. JOSSE: Can we go into private session for a moment,
8 Your Honour.
9 JUDGE KWON: Yes. Just a second.
10 [Private session]
25 [Open session]
1 MR. BOURGON:
2 Q. I would just like to ask one question, sir --
3 JUDGE KWON: Yes, proceed, please.
4 MR. BOURGON:
5 Q. And that is concerning the -- I look at page 13 and your answer
6 was: "Some people turned up and said, Where have you been, what have you
7 been doing. You know you have to take the soldiers to be exchanged and
8 there were people who were dead, who had died."
9 Can you clarify from this answer that from that moment on you
10 know that you would be transporting prisoners of war.
11 JUDGE KWON: If you could remind him of the question you put to
12 him before that answer.
13 MR. BOURGON: Mr. President, the question was very general, what
14 happened when you arrived at the school, and then this is what he was
16 JUDGE KWON: For the first time.
17 MR. BOURGON: For the first time.
18 Q. So when those people told you this, from that point on did you
19 know that you would be transporting prisoners of war?
20 A. I didn't.
21 Q. And when you realized -- you told us that you realized too late
22 and you answered the question of the Presiding Judge, or that I put to
23 you in line of the comments received from the Presiding Judge, that you
24 realized too late and you said you did not have a choice, but why did you
1 A. I could not refuse the order. I might have been killed.
2 Q. How did you feel towards those people who were giving the orders?
3 A. It was a terrible feeling but I had to see the order through. I
4 could not refuse.
5 MR. BOURGON: Thank you very much, sir. I have no further
6 questions. Thank you, Mr. President.
7 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, Mr. Bourgon. Will there be any
8 cross-examination by any of the Defence teams? Mr. Zivanovic.
9 MR. ZIVANOVIC: We are not cross-examining this witness. Thank
11 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Nikolic.
12 MR. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Mr. President, no questions.
13 JUDGE KWON: I see none. Mr. McCloskey, shall we take a break
15 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes, please, Mr. President.
16 JUDGE KWON: We'll break for 25 minutes.
17 --- Recess taken at 10.28 a.m.
18 --- On resuming at 11.00 a.m.
19 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Witness, how do you feel? Are you okay,
20 Mr. Witness?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes, I am.
22 JUDGE KWON: Whenever you feel not well, let us know, we can
23 break for you.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
25 JUDGE KWON: So you will be asked some questions by the
1 Prosecutor, Mr. McCloskey.
2 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, Mr. President.
3 Cross-examination by Mr. McCloskey:
4 Q. And good morning, Witness. My name is Peter McCloskey.
5 A. Good morning.
6 Q. I represent the Office of the Prosecutor and I'll have some
7 questions for you today.
8 We have a statement that Mr. Bourgon gave us that says he met
9 with you, looks like once in January and three times in February, and on
10 the 16th of March, all in 2007; is that right? Does that sound
11 roughly -- so you met with him five times?
12 A. Correct, yes.
13 Q. And you met with him in the last day or so to go over your
15 A. Yes, that's right.
16 Q. Okay. And I notice that Mr. Bourgon asked you a question, did
17 you ever speak to Mr. Gotovac, and on page 29 you said, "No, never. Not
18 until -- I never did and I didn't feel like it."
19 So, sir, when did you speak to Gotovac?
20 A. I didn't.
21 Q. So when you said "not until," that was a mistake?
22 A. No, not at all. I never talked about it.
23 Q. Were you aware of Mr. Gotovac's version of these events at
25 A. I didn't understand the question.
1 Q. Were you aware, from around town or from other people or from
2 anywhere, of Mr. Gotovac's version of the events that happened at
3 Orahovac that day?
4 A. I can't -- I don't know what this is about. I don't understand
5 the question. You mean, did I talk to Gotovac about the child, is that
6 what you mean, or what?
7 Q. Well, that's one question, yeah. Did you talk to him about the
9 A. No. No, I didn't.
10 Q. Okay. Did you hear from anyone else around Zvornik or around
11 anywhere about what Gotovac was reporting happened that day about the
13 A. No.
14 Q. No one has ever told you that Mr. Gotovac has a different version
15 than you?
16 A. I heard from other people that the child was driven to hospital,
17 but not from him. Not from Djoko.
18 Q. I'm not asking you what you heard from Djoko. I'm asking you:
19 Did you hear from anybody else that Djoko took this child from the
20 execution site and took him to the hospital?
21 A. He took him from Orahovac, he drove him from Orahovac. That's
22 where he drove him away from, not underneath the tap, the water point.
23 Q. So you mentioned underneath the tap or the water point, that was
24 the execution site; right?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Are you telling us today you have never heard that story that
2 Gotovac took the child from the execution site, the water point? You
3 never heard that story from anyone?
4 A. No.
5 Q. You have no idea today that you are correcting the record, and
6 you are defending the truth for Mr. Nikolic? This is all new to you?
7 A. I brought the child to the school. Djoko took over the child
8 from the school and drove it off, and I didn't discuss it with Djoko at
10 Q. Well, we'll get into your version of the events soon, but I want
11 to just ask you one more time, I'm not asking you what happened there,
12 I'm asking you what you heard around town or from Defence counsel or from
13 investigators. Did you ever hear that Djoko had picked up the child from
14 the execution site?
15 A. No.
16 Q. So this is not a story that is going around Zvornik and has been
17 going around Zvornik for a good amount of time now, as far as you know?
18 A. I didn't hear about it.
19 Q. Okay. I want to ask you -- I want to ask you a little bit about
20 being a truck driver. I was a truck driver for a while, I've known many
21 truck drivers, and as far as I know, it's a universal truth that in
22 driving a truck if the material you are driving is damaged or happens to
23 fall out of the back, the truck driver is in trouble. Isn't that the way
24 it is in the VRS too?
25 A. Well, I don't know. I didn't have any trouble. How do you mean?
1 I don't understand the question, actually.
2 Q. Well, let's say you've got a bunch of boxes of ammunition in the
3 back of your truck and you don't latch the latch, and the latch falls
4 down, and you haven't tied down the ammunition in the back of the truck
5 and it bounces around and falls out on to the road so when you get to the
6 frontline there is no bullets, you are in trouble; right?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Okay?
9 JUDGE KWON: Mr. McCloskey, can I interrupt a minute.
10 Mr. Witness, do not speak while the microphones of other people are on in
11 order for your voice not to be heard outside. Could you bear that in
12 mind. Let's continue.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I apologise.
14 MR. McCLOSKEY:
15 Q. Sir, and that truck that you had at Orahovac, that had a, what we
16 call a tailgate that you put down so people can get into it and so
17 material can be loaded into it; right?
18 A. Yes, that's right.
19 Q. And that day that you first backed up to the gym, was that
20 tailgate taken down?
21 A. Yes, it was.
22 Q. How do you know?
23 A. There are some auxiliary benches that you lower, I didn't see
24 that but those benches were lowered. When the child was taken out the
25 benches were lowered.
1 Q. I'm not talking about the child now. I'm talking about when you
2 first backed up to the gym.
3 A. The benches were lowered.
4 Q. Who did it?
5 A. Probably those people who were working over there because they
6 knew you could put the benches up and fold them down. They were
7 makeshift benches.
8 Q. How did you know that if you were sitting in the truck and they
9 had refused to let you get out of the truck?
10 A. When I finished I saw the child was there and I saw that the
11 benches had been lowered, they were down.
12 Q. So you think the tailgate or the benches were down the entire day
13 that it was going back and forth?
14 A. I don't know.
15 Q. Are you standing by the statement that when you were backing up
16 to the gym for the first time that the soldiers there would not let you
17 get out of your truck?
18 A. They wouldn't let me, no.
19 Q. Did you find that a little strange?
20 A. Well, it was strange but I didn't dare get down from the truck.
21 Q. Why not?
22 A. I don't know. They wouldn't allow me to.
23 Q. What happened after you backed your truck up to the gym?
24 A. I came up and they started loading. They said, Step on the gas.
25 They were loading up and I was sitting inside and I felt the truck
1 moving, that people were getting in. It rocking.
2 Q. So you knew there were people getting in now?
3 A. Yes, I did know that.
4 Q. How did you know that?
5 A. Well, the truck was rocking, people were walking about inside,
6 getting in. And they shouted out, Get in, get in.
7 Q. And you looked in your mirrors, I take it?
8 A. I couldn't see anything, it was closed, there was just the walls.
9 I couldn't see anything inside. It was just the wall.
10 Q. So you did look in the mirror, and you did see what was behind
11 the truck, the wall?
12 A. I couldn't see anything. Well, yes, the wall, I had come up to
13 the wall, to the doors. And everything that was going on was going on
14 inside over there.
15 Q. About how many people can you jam into the back of your truck?
16 A. 15 maybe, perhaps a few more.
17 Q. And you think you may have taken six or eight truckloads that day
18 of people?
19 A. Thereabouts. Well, I'm not quite sure but I assume that would be
20 about right.
21 Q. Well, let's say you jammed 20 in the back of that truck and you
22 took eight loads, that's about 160 people. There's no question that
23 there was more than 500 people in that gym. What other trucks were
25 A. I don't know. One other truck was working.
1 Q. Only one other truck. And who was driving that?
2 A. I don't know.
3 Q. And who gave you the orders that day, once you got to Orahovac?
4 A. I have no idea. I don't know who it was.
5 Q. And who were the soldiers on the road that gave you the order to
6 go up to the water point?
7 A. I don't know.
8 Q. And who were the soldiers that at the water point told you to go
9 under the overpass?
10 A. I don't know.
11 Q. And who were the soldiers that were on the other side of the
12 overpass, the ten soldiers?
13 A. I don't know who they were either.
14 Q. In fact, the only name you've ever mentioned in your statements,
15 in all your statements to the Defence and in Court was the name of
16 Djoko Gotovac. That's the only person you recognise being in the area of
17 Orahovac in this place where you were driving?
18 A. I saw him and knew him because he came to Orahovac.
19 Q. Right. And you didn't know anybody else at the Orahovac school,
20 along the road, at the execution site, back at the school, all that time
21 you spent going back and forth and back and forth, the only person you
22 ever knew was Djoko Gotovac?
23 A. There was a mass of people there. I couldn't look at them all
24 and follow them all, I was driving.
25 Q. Do you know Gojko Simic from Orahovac?
1 A. No.
2 Q. Do you know Lazar Ristic?
3 A. Lazar Ristic? There are two Lazar Ristics. I don't know which
4 you mean.
5 Q. Okay. Let me -- let me go over the statement that we have for
6 you. It's the latest one, I think it's 3732. And we shouldn't broadcast
7 it, please, but if we could get it up on the screen. Sir, I don't think
8 there is a B/C/S of this, so I'm just going to -- or a Serbian version.
9 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Mr. Bourgon.
10 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President. There is a B/C/S version
11 but without the latest corrections that we brought because I told my
12 colleague when we discussed this on Friday that we ran a check between
13 the B/C/S version and the English version and he must have been able do
14 the same because he says there was a translation error, so I take it that
15 you have this B/C/S version.
16 MR. McCLOSKEY: Actually you are right, so if we -- not the
17 corrected version but I think the B/C/S version is okay, actually. Now
18 that I think about it. So if we could get a hard copy to the witness,
19 that will be more helpful.
20 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
21 MR. McCLOSKEY:
22 Q. Okay. Witness, if you could just go to the next page where you
23 should find numbered paragraphs. Now, looking at paragraph 3, it talks
24 about you getting an order from Obradovic to take your TAM to Orahovac.
25 You say you go there at about 1600. And you say that "... there were a
1 lot of soldiers and civilians in front of the school in Orahovac." And
2 that: "Some soldiers asked me what took me so long as it was necessary
3 for me to drive imprisoned soldiers for an exchange. At that moment,
4 they told me there were also a few who had died who needed to be
5 transported as well."
6 Did you see the dead people?
7 A. No, I didn't.
8 Q. Did you see anybody lying down in the front of the gym near the
9 fence by the road?
10 A. No, I didn't. No. No, I didn't.
11 Q. Did you see a pile of clothes, jackets, hats, other materials, a
12 big pile of clothes piled up there in front of the gym?
13 A. No, I didn't.
14 Q. Let's go to paragraph 4. "They ordered me to park in front of
15 the gymnasium and to approach the door and stairs with the back of my TAM
16 truck. I remember doing that and not getting out of the vehicle. I was
17 told to get going and to drive towards Krizevici, which I did."
18 Now, there's nothing in your statement about anything being
19 loaded on to a truck and there's nothing else in the statement that makes
20 reference to that. Now, are you testifying today for the first time
21 about these people getting loaded on for your truck or did they make a
22 mistake when they made out this statement and left out people getting on
23 your truck?
24 A. They did get in.
25 Q. Had you told that to the investigators and Mr. Bourgon when you
1 provided a statement to them?
2 A. I did.
3 Q. Okay. Let's keep going. "I was told to get going and to drive
4 towards Krizevici, which I did. When I began driving towards Krizevici,
5 after approximately 100 to 150 metres from the school, someone by the
6 road signalled for me to stop. After I stopped, soldiers approached me
7 and asked me where I was going without an escort. After which two of
8 them got into the truck -- got into the back of the truck and we
9 continued. While driving towards the water point on that road, I was
10 directed left from the road by some other soldiers and policemen in the
11 direction of the underpass under the railroad tracks. I went through
12 this and was ordered to turn around and stop the truck. On every
13 subsequent drive there was an escort in the bodywork of my truck."
14 Going to paragraph 5, it says: "I do not remember how many times
15 I went from the school to that place, but I did not get out of the
16 vehicle at all. I would only stop and move in the direction which these
17 soldiers would signal me by hand."
18 Now, sir, there's no mention here, nor in any other part of this
19 statement, of anything bad happening there where you stopped your truck
20 by the railroad tracks. So my question is, did you explain to
21 Mr. Bourgon and the investigators about the bad things that were
22 happening there or are you just telling us that for the first time today?
23 A. I said it before.
24 Q. Who did you say it to?
25 A. My investigators.
1 Q. So they are your investigators?
2 A. I mean these people of mine, here. I don't know.
3 Q. So what did you tell them about this?
4 A. The same thing that's written down here.
5 Q. Sir, there's nothing there about anybody being shot or abused or
6 hurt in any way. Was anybody hurt or abused in any way that you left off
7 at that point by the railroad tracks?
8 A. I didn't see it. They were taken away from me. I didn't see
10 Q. So how do you know anything bad happened?
11 A. Well, I saw later on.
12 Q. What did you see later on?
13 A. Dead people.
14 Q. Where?
15 A. By the roadside. By the tap, the water point.
16 Q. Okay. So you've said you saw dead people by the tap, that's by
17 the asphalt road, that's some 100 to 200 metres away from the first place
18 you loaded people. I'm asking about the first place you unloaded people,
19 underneath that railroad track. Did you ever see anything happen to
20 those people or did you see any bodies?
21 A. Underneath the railroad tracks by the asphalt. That's where the
22 road was and that's where the dead people were. By the asphalt road,
23 underneath the railroad tracks, there were quite a few dead people.
24 Q. How many?
25 A. A lot.
1 Q. Hundreds?
2 A. I can't say for certain but roughly a hundred. I can't give you
3 an exact figure, I don't know.
4 Q. How were they assembled?
5 A. They were lying there.
6 Q. On top of each other?
7 A. I didn't look.
8 Q. Did you get out of your truck then?
9 A. I went past that way. No, I didn't.
10 Q. There's no mention in this statement of people lying down, lots
11 of people lying down and dead. Why isn't that in this statement?
12 A. I don't know.
13 Q. You say it took you about half your trips before you realized
14 anything bad was going on; is that correct?
15 A. Yes, around about halfway through my trips.
16 Q. So the next time you went back to that spot underneath the
17 railroad tracks, you looked out your windshield and you saw those men,
18 didn't you, the soldiers that were there?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. What else did you see that first trip when you came -- sorry,
21 your second trip?
22 A. Only people.
23 Q. Did you see all those Muslims that second trip?
24 A. I didn't understand the question.
25 Q. That second time you drove your truck underneath the railroad
1 tracks and you got out, there's big meadow in front of you, isn't there?
2 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Bourgon -- Witness, wait a minute. Mr. Bourgon.
3 MR. BOURGON: Mr. President, the witness never said that he got
4 out. He went underneath the railroad, he explained what he did, but he
5 never said that he got out.
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I did not come out.
7 JUDGE KWON: Let's move on. Probably you need to ask the
8 question again.
9 MR. McCLOSKEY:
10 Q. Sorry, what I meant was, when you came out from underneath that
11 railroad track in your vehicle, sorry, underneath the -- underneath that
12 overpass, as you were driving that direction, you see a very large meadow
13 in front of you, didn't you?
14 I'll try again. Sir, I've been there many, many times. I'm sure
15 it's a vision in your head you'll never forget, if it actually happened.
16 When you come out from underneath that railroad track, there's a
17 big meadow in front of you, and you would see that looking through the
18 windshield of your truck; right?
19 A. I can tell you this: I didn't go underneath from up above
20 because people were being unloaded in two spots. One before and one
21 after the railroad tracks. As I was coming out, there were no people.
22 Q. You have said on your way there the first time, you drove under
23 the railroad tracks; correct?
24 A. Correct. And people were being unloaded up there. As I was
25 going back down, there were none.
1 Q. Okay. I'm just talking to you about the second time you went to
2 that spot. The second time you went to that spot on the other side of
3 the railroad tracks, there was a big meadow, wasn't there?
4 A. We didn't pass under the railroad tracks anymore.
5 Q. Okay. So now you are saying you just went under the railroad
6 tracks one time?
7 A. I went underneath the tracks several times, but there were no
8 dead people down there. Later on, later on. They were unloaded in two
9 different places.
10 Q. Yes, sir, and they were unloaded at the other side of those
11 railroad tracks and they were shot right after they were unloaded from
12 your truck and they died there. And the second time that you would have
13 come back and dropped people in the same place, you would have seen their
14 corpses or their twitching alive bodies, depending if they died or not.
15 Now, did you see that or not?
16 JUDGE KWON: Just a second, Witness. Mr. Bourgon.
17 MR. BOURGON: If my colleague can refrain from his editorial
18 comments. He can ask what the witness saw, what the witness did not see.
19 He can propose but he cannot make these emotional editorial comments to
20 try and impress the witness. Thank you, Mr. President.
21 JUDGE KWON: Well, this is a cross-examination and let us see
22 whether the witness can answer the question.
23 MR. McCLOSKEY:
24 Q. I'm sorry, sir, but this was a mass -- this is a case of mass
25 murder and people don't die all at once when they are killed in large
1 numbers. So my question is: When you came out on that side of the
2 railroad track the second time, did you see the corpses, did you see the
3 dying people? You would have had to, sir, if what you are telling us is
5 A. I saw the bodies on the side of the road underneath the railroad
6 tracks. Not up there.
7 Q. Okay. Let's keep going along in your statement. On paragraph 5,
8 you say: "I do not remember how many times I went from the school to
9 that place, but I did not get out of the vehicle at all. I would only
10 stop and move in the direction which these soldiers would signal me by
12 So, are you saying the entire time that you went up there to the
13 water point and by the railroad track, you never, ever got out of your
15 A. I did not.
16 Q. Did you ever stop your vehicle and just sit there for any length
17 of time?
18 A. Only while the truck was being loaded. I didn't leave the truck.
19 Q. Sir, I'm talking about the water point, the field by the water
20 point, and the field by the railroad tracks. Did anyone load anything on
21 your truck when you were there to take back towards Orahovac?
22 A. The child was put on the truck, but I didn't see who did that.
23 That is certain. I did not see that.
24 Q. So you are saying unbeknownst to you during the time you were
25 going back and forth, somebody secretly put a child on the back of your
1 truck, a bleeding, shot child, is that you are telling us?
2 JUDGE KWON: Witness, just a second. Yes, Mr. Bourgon?
3 MR. BOURGON: Mr. President, the witness did not say that the
4 somebody put --
5 MR. McCLOSKEY: I object to him talking in front of the witness
6 like this. He is just signalling the witness.
7 MR. BOURGON: If the witness can take out his earphones, I will
8 do my objections calmly and not excited like my colleague.
9 JUDGE KWON: Just a second.
10 [Trial Chamber confers]
11 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Witness, if you could kindly take out your
12 headphones. I should ask whether he would understand English.
13 Mr. Witness, do you speak English or do you understand English?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
15 JUDGE KWON: If you could take off the head phones again. One
16 further clarification. Mr. Witness, are you feeling okay?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I feel a cramp in the neck but we
18 can go on.
19 JUDGE KWON: I appreciate it. Yes. Take it off, please.
20 Mr. Bourgon.
21 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President. My colleague put a
22 question to the witness whether he saw, the witness answered that he did
23 not see, he said, "That is for certain. I did not see who put the child
24 on the truck." Then my colleague went on to say that, "What you are
25 saying is that someone secretly put a child on your truck." That's not
1 what the witness said. Even though this is cross-examination, if he is
2 going to push the witness at least he should take the answer from the
3 witness and not a different answer. Thank you, Mr. President.
4 [Trial Chamber confers]
5 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Bourgon, unfortunately the Chamber does not
6 agree with you. We find that it's a perfectly proper and legitimate
7 question. Please proceed. Let him wear the headphone again.
8 Mr. McCloskey.
9 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, Mr. President.
10 Q. So, sir, you are telling us today that an unknown soldier
11 secretly, without your knowledge, put a child, a bleeding child, on your
12 truck and just left him there --
13 A. Yes, yes.
14 Q. How old was this child?
15 A. Five or six years of age.
16 Q. What other things were secretly put on your truck that day that
17 you didn't know about?
18 A. Nothing else.
19 Q. Okay. Let's continue to go through your statement. And I want
20 to go now to paragraph -- well, paragraph 6: "I remember that the
21 Orahovac-Krizevici-Kitovnice road was closed for civilian traffic and
22 that there were guards on the road by the water point so that nobody
23 could continue further in the direction of Krizevici. I remember that
24 there were no vehicle escorts by other vehicles. Besides my TAM truck, I
25 saw a large truck, I cannot remember which kind, was driving the same
1 route. There was also a smaller Zastava truck which I saw was parked by
2 the school in Orahovac, but I do not remember whether it drove the same
4 Now, in this statement you are talking about the truck going the
5 same route you are going in. Today you've told us that the other big
6 truck had Muslims in it; isn't that right?
7 A. I didn't say there were Muslims. I said that there were people
8 on it. I don't know who they were. I was told that I was to take people
9 for an exchange. I was doing the driving and the larger truck. The
10 Zastava truck was not moving, it was parked. Maybe it had been doing
11 something before that but at the moment I had spotted it, it was still.
12 Q. Sir, now, there's nowhere in this statement where you say that
13 this large truck has people in it. What I want to know is, are you
14 telling us for the first time today that that big truck had people in it
15 or had you told that to the investigators or Mr. Bourgon before?
16 A. There were people, most likely. They were parked in front of the
17 same door where I was told to park.
18 Q. Sir, I think you understand my question. We've done this before.
19 Did you tell the investigators --
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Okay. Let's just try to go through it slowly. Did you tell the
22 investigators when you spoke with them those many times that you actually
23 knew that there were people in that big truck, or are you telling it for
24 the first time today? I ask you that question, sir, because there's no
25 mention of any people in this truck in your statement.
1 JUDGE KWON: Just hold on, Mr. Witness. Do not answer before we
2 hear the objection of Mr. Bourgon. Mr. Bourgon?
3 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President. I do not object to the
4 question. However, I note that for my colleague the question that was
5 put to the witness earlier on, and this is on page 18, line 16 and 17,
6 was: "Sir, did you see any other trucks doing the same kind of transport
7 you were doing." The answer of the witness was: "Yes, I did." My
8 colleague should not distort the facts when he is putting his questions.
9 Thank you, Mr. President.
10 JUDGE KWON: Just speaking for myself, I don't see much
11 distortion in his question. Mr. McCloskey, please carry on.
12 MR. McCLOSKEY: Thank you, Mr. President.
13 Q. So it's a simple point, sir. Did you tell the investigators
14 about the people in that other truck and it just got left out of the
15 statement or did you just tell us for the first time today? It happens
16 both ways.
17 A. I did say that I saw the truck in operation. It was doing the
18 same thing I was.
19 Q. Okay. I don't think I'll ask you that question again.
20 Paragraph 7: "When I returned to the school and got out of the
21 vehicle," so now is this the first time you've gotten out of the vehicle
22 the whole day?
23 A. The first time.
24 Q. Why?
25 A. The gym door was open and there was no one next to the door. I
1 didn't go in that direction but I parked in front of the school.
2 Q. Well, if you couldn't see inside the gym, how did you know or why
3 did you think there wasn't more people to take to the execution spot?
4 A. The door was open. The door was open and there was no one by the
6 Q. So you could see all the way into the gym?
7 A. There was no need for me to go there. There were no more
8 soldiers there to tell me to go there.
9 Q. Okay. Let's go back to your statement. "When I returned to the
10 school and got out of the vehicle, I realized that I had brought a child
11 back from the area near the railroad. I saw the child in the bodywork of
12 the truck, holding on to the side of the TAM truck and crying. I did not
13 see, but I suppose that one of the soldiers by the railroad must have
14 placed the child in the truck bodywork. I told the child to get off the
15 side of the truck, but it told me that it couldn't since it was bleeding
16 from the leg, which I could see since the child was wearing shorts."
17 A. I didn't tell the child to get off. I told him to move away from
18 the side so that it wouldn't fall off the truck. I didn't tell him to
19 get off.
20 Q. Just to be clear, the child is in the actual bed of the truck
21 where you take cargo at this point; right?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Was there any reason why the child couldn't have ridden in the
24 cab with you on the way back from the execution site?
25 A. I don't know about it.
1 Q. That wasn't my question, sir. The child could have been put in
2 the cab with you; right?
3 A. But it didn't. I don't know. I didn't see anything.
4 Q. Okay, let's keep going. "This all took place at dusk and I
5 remember well that the child remained in the bodywork of my TAM truck for
6 at least an hour on the road in front of the school. I stopped driving,
7 I was shaken by all that had happened."
8 Okay. First of all, in this statement you don't describe seeing
9 anything difficult. You don't talk about executions or going to
10 executions. So when you say "I was shaken by all that happened" in this
11 statement, what are you talking about?
12 A. I'm talking about the tragedy. About the things I saw.
13 Q. Well, you'll agree with me that as we've read through the report,
14 there's no mention of taking anyone to executions or seeing any bodies or
15 seeing anyone shot or hearing about it or thinking about it. My question
16 is: Sir, did you not tell the investigators all this stuff then, is that
17 why it's not in there, or did you tell them then and they just left it
18 all out?
19 A. I was sick of it. It was very difficult for me and it was very
20 difficult for me to see the child.
21 Q. You are responsible for cleaning out the back of your truck,
22 aren't you?
23 A. Yes, I was.
24 Q. What did you find in the back of the truck when you cleaned it
25 out after these events? It was pretty awful, wasn't it?
1 A. It was awful. I didn't find anything except for the child when I
2 came to Orahovac.
3 Q. Any human fluids, bodily fluids, excrement, anything like that?
4 A. No, no.
5 Q. Let's keep going. "This all took place at dusk and I remember
6 well that the child remained in the bodywork of the TAM truck for at
7 least an hour on the road in front of the school. I stopped driving, I
8 was shaken by all that happened."
9 So you are telling us today that some unknown person took a child
10 which you thought was five or six, who was in fact seven years old if
11 it's the same child, took him from a mass execution site where he had
12 been injured in a volley of fire, was bleeding, secreted him in the back
13 of your truck when he could have been put in the front of the truck, so
14 you didn't even know they were back there, you take it -- take him back
15 to Orahovac -- you know, this is obstruction.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's how it happened.
17 MR. BOURGON: Asked and answered, Mr. President.
18 MR. McCLOSKEY: That's not an appropriate objection for
19 cross-examination. And I'm getting to the part that I just went over,
20 but I think the story needs to be told in toto, which he's agreed with
21 the part that I was able to get out.
22 JUDGE KWON: Let's stop here. Let's go on.
23 MR. McCLOSKEY:
24 Q. All right. I'm sorry to have to start over.
25 JUDGE KWON: I remember he answered.
1 MR. McCLOSKEY: This question, Your Honour, I'm sorry but it has
2 to be done in one whole. It's crucial. Thank you.
3 Q. Sir, the person gets secreted into your truck, seven year old who
4 is bleeding, from a mass execution. You go back to Orahovac, you see the
5 seven year old child you think is five or six bleeding in the back of
6 truck. You sit there for one hour with this bleeding seven-year-old boy
7 in the back of your truck.
8 Sir, it's the position of the Prosecutor that you would never
9 have done that, you would have never allowed a seven-year-old boy to be
10 sitting in the back of your truck where he could very well bleed to death
11 and die in your truck. This is something that you've made up. This is
12 something to get back at the stories you've heard around Orahovac and
13 around Zvornik.
14 A. Nothing was made up. This is the truth. I saw it. I would
15 thank God for not having me to see that.
16 Q. If that child had died of loss of blood in the back of your
17 truck, you know you would have been partly responsible, don't you?
18 A. It may well be.
19 Q. And you would never let a seven-year-old bleed to death right in
20 front of you, would you?
21 A. I would not.
22 Q. I believe you.
23 MR. McCLOSKEY: No further questions.
24 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Bourgon, do you have re-examination?
25 MR. BOURGON: I do, Mr. President.
1 Re-examination by Mr. Bourgon:
2 Q. Sir, you -- my colleague asked you many questions concerning the
3 fact that you did not recognise anyone in Orahovac on that day. My
4 question is: The way you felt that day, can that partly explain that you
5 did not recognise anyone?
6 MR. McCLOSKEY: Objection. He can ask why he didn't recognise
7 but you can't give him the answer before you ask it. He knows that.
8 JUDGE KWON: Yes, rephrase your question.
9 MR. BOURGON: Thank you, Mr. President.
10 Q. The persons that is -- how did you feel that day, throughout the
11 day, and when you look back at these events, what is the feeling that
12 comes back to you all the time?
13 A. I keep going back to it and I feel all broken up inside. I feel
14 dizzy and sick. It's not easy for one to see that.
15 Q. Sir, when we -- when you met with members of the Defence team of
16 Drago Nikolic, was it always obvious to you that we were talking about
17 the transport of prisoners between the school and the water point?
18 A. Are you asking me that question?
19 Q. Yes.
20 A. I didn't understand.
21 Q. Okay. I will say the question over again.
22 When you met with members of the Defence team, either myself or
23 with Ms. Jelena Nikolic, when you signed your statement, did you know at
24 the time that we were talking about the transport of prisoners between
25 the school and the water point?
1 A. No.
2 Q. Did you tell us what you were transporting between the school and
3 the water point when we met?
4 A. Yes, I did.
5 Q. What did you explain to us when we met?
6 A. Everything that is written. As it is written, that's what I
8 Q. And what did you tell us about the transport of prisoners or
10 A. I said that I drove them from Orahovac to the tap and back, but
11 I'm not sure that I understood your question properly.
12 Q. That was exactly my question.
13 I'd like to move on to just to -- and I know this is not easy for
14 you, but again the child in the back of your truck. My colleague asked
15 you a question about the child was hanging on to the side of the truck.
16 Can you describe for the Judges where is the child when you first see
17 him, is he close to you, is he deep in the truck or -- what are we
18 talking about? Can you just describe for the Judges when you see that
19 child where he is exactly.
20 A. When I went back I got off the truck to see the two who were the
21 escorts, among the escorts. The two of them weren't there but what I saw
22 was a child holding on to the back side and crying. I went up to him
23 straightaway. I told the child to move away so the soldiers couldn't see
24 him and he said he couldn't walk, that his leg hurt, and that his leg was
25 bleeding and I saw a little blood coming from his leg.
1 And in the meantime, the soldiers came by and Djoko arrived
2 within the hour. They took the child from the truck and transferred him
3 to the van and the child was driven off to Zvornik. That's all that
5 Q. Thank you, sir. I have one last question. And that is, my
6 colleague suggested to you that you made up this story for getting back,
7 he did not say at what but he said to get back at something. My question
8 is, do you have any reason to come and testify here today and not to say
9 the truth?
10 A. No. What I'm telling you is the truth. It's the truth.
11 MR. BOURGON: Thank you very much, sir. I have no further
12 questions. Thank you, Mr. President.
13 JUDGE KWON: Thank you, witness, that concludes your evidence.
14 On behalf of the Tribunal, I thank you for your coming to the Tribunal to
15 give it and now you are free to go. Have a nice trip back.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
17 [The witness withdrew]
18 JUDGE KWON: Documents, Mr. Bourgon, you have an IC document.
19 MR. BOURGON: Indeed, Mr. President, we have one document. The
20 list was sent from my colleague to the Prosecution. This is the sketch
21 of the school in Orahovac and the surrounding areas, and this document
22 bears the name "plan" with 1 to 500 for the scale. And the number of the
23 document as marked by the witness would be 3D00084, IC 217, dated
24 15th September 2008
25 3D00482. Also dated 15 September. I did not include on this the
1 statement of the witness. I anticipated my colleague will be asking for
2 the statement to go into evidence because he used it. If he doesn't,
3 then I will ask that the statement goes into evidence. Thank you,
4 Mr. President.
5 JUDGE KWON: What is that plan about? Is it -- are you referring
6 to 3D84?
7 MR. BOURGON: The plan I was referring to, Mr. President --
8 JUDGE KWON: Did we see it?
9 MR. BOURGON: -- is the plan that the witness used and that he
11 JUDGE KWON: So you referred to the IC document.
12 MR. BOURGON: Yes, the IC document. But now I was -- at the last
13 part I was talking about the statement --
14 JUDGE KWON: I followed.
15 MR. BOURGON: -- of the witness so it's a different thing. So
16 there is the map -- the sketch that he marked, the pseudonym sheet, I
17 said about those two. If my colleague does not ask for the statement to
18 go into evidence, I will ask for that statement to go into evidence.
19 Thank you Mr. President.
20 JUDGE KWON: Mr. McCloskey.
21 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes. No objection to the Defence and I will ask
22 so we are together again on allowing this 92 ter, originally, statement
23 into evidence, but of course not as a 92 ter statement.
24 JUDGE KWON: So that's the only document you will tender as
1 MR. McCLOSKEY: Yes, and that's 3732 is the number I have.
2 JUDGE KWON: No objection from any of the Defence? All of them
3 will be admitted. Pseudonym sheet and the statement will be under seal.
4 Is the next witness ready?
5 MR. BOURGON: Mr. President, the next witness is ready to go. I
6 suggest, however, that maybe if we can take a short break now, then we
7 can probably complete the second witness before we finish, just in one
8 go, both examination-in-chief and cross-examination. It should be a
9 short witness.
10 [Trial Chamber confers]
11 JUDGE KWON: I'll leave it in your hands. You wish to take a
12 break now?
13 MR. BOURGON: I would prefer, Mr. President. The reason is this
14 is a -- the next witness is a 92 ter witness and we will be very short.
15 And the Prosecution has indicated 30 minutes so it should not go over
16 more than one hour, one hour and 15 minutes. So if we take a short break
17 now and we come back at 12.30, we can finish the witness today before the
18 end of the day.
19 JUDGE KWON: Very well. We take a break now, 25 minutes.
20 --- Break taken at 12.07 p.m.
21 --- On resuming at 12.37 p.m.
22 [The witness entered court]
23 JUDGE KWON: Good afternoon, Doctor. If you could kindly take
24 the solemn declaration.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
1 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
2 JUDGE KWON: Thank you. Please make yourself comfortable.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
4 JUDGE KWON: Madam Nikolic. Please proceed.
5 WITNESS: VELA JOVICIC
6 [Witness answered through interpreter]
7 Examination by Ms. Nikolic:
8 Q. [Interpretation] Thank you. Good afternoon to the Court. Good
9 afternoon, witness?
10 A. Good afternoon Mr. Ms. Nikolic.
11 Q. We have already met so I'm going to ask you some questions now
12 with respect to your CV and some other matters and it will be recorded in
13 the. Could you please give us your name and surname.
14 A. Vela Jovicic.
15 Q. When and where were you born?
16 A. On the 8th of February, 1958, in Seliste, Sekovici.
17 Q. Your name has not been entered into the transcript, could you
18 repeat it?
19 A. Vela, V-e-l-a, Jovicic, J-o-v-i-c-i-c.
20 Q. Thank you.
21 A. You're welcome.
22 Q. Can you tell us what your occupation is?
23 A. I'm a doctor and I specialize in the sphere of health for school
25 Q. What education have you had?
1 A. The faculty of medicine and I specialized in healthcare for
2 school children.
3 Q. Before we continue, could I ask you to make pauses between my
4 questions and your answers because we speak the same language, but to
5 give the interpreters a chance to interpret what we are saying, so that
6 everyone can follow. And so that the transcript reflects our words.
7 A. I understand, Ms. Nikolic.
8 Q. Where do you work at present?
9 A. The health centre of Zvornik. That's where I'm employed and then
10 I have a contract with the general hospital of Zvornik
11 the children's ward part time.
12 Q. Could you tell us who is the head of the pediatric department?
13 A. It is Mrs. Koviljka Gotovac, Doctor.
14 Q. Do you remember who the director of the Zvornik hospital was
15 during the war, during 1995?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Could you give us the name?
18 A. Dr. Jugoslav Gavric.
19 THE INTERPRETER: Please pause between question and answer.
20 Thank you.
21 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation]
22 Q. Do you remember having given a statement to the Defence team of
23 Drago Nikolic on the 23rd of March, 2008, and after that, an addition on
24 the 27th of May, 2008?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Did you have an opportunity to read both your statements in
2 preparing for your testimony?
3 A. Yes.
4 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, pursuant to
5 Rule 90(l)[as interpreted], I'd like to read a summary of the witness
6 statement and the additional statement made by the witness.
7 JUDGE KWON: Yes, proceed, but it's not pursuant to the rules
8 itself, but according to our direct guideline. Yes, please proceed.
9 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Thank you. The witness is a
10 pediatrician by profession. She specializes in the health of school
11 children at the health centre in Zvornik. During the war, between 1993
12 and 1995, she work as a pediatrician in the Zvornik hospital at the
13 children's ward there. During that time, there were four women
14 pediatricians working in the hospital. As a doctor she was mobilised for
15 a period of one month, during March 1995, into the Zvornik Brigade. She
16 performed this duty as a mobilised physician for only one month because
17 she didn't have any experience in the treatment of adults. During the
18 war in the hospital in Zvornik and after the war, all patients without
19 exception had proper care and attention and medical treatment provided to
20 them by the physicians and medical staff, nurses, regardless of their
21 nationality or religion.
22 During the war from 1992 to 1995, at the pediatricians ward of
23 the Zvornik hospital there were several Muslim boys who were treated
24 there and spent most of the war there. Among those boys were the
25 following: Adnan, who was six months when was brought to the ward and he
1 grew up in the hospital. Another boy named Zijo who spent the entire war
2 in the hospital, almost four years. (redacted)
6 MR. VANDERPUYE: I apologise, Mr. President. I think if we could
7 go into private session for just a moment.
8 JUDGE KWON: Yes.
9 [Private session]
23 [Open session]
24 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. So you
25 expect me, when I continue, not to mention the name in open session but
1 we'll just refer to the individual as the boy?
2 JUDGE KWON: Let's proceed.
3 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
4 After the boy was given surgical treatment, he was transferred to
5 the pediatric ward. The witness remembers that the boy, as opposed to
6 other children, was withdrawn and found it difficult to establish
7 communication with other people.
8 The child and other the other children -- well, the witness and
9 the other doctors and medical staff liked the boy and he stayed in the
10 hospital until January 1996 when he was taken away by the Red Cross.
11 The witness claims that during the war, including July 1995,
12 there were no conflicts between the doctors and medical staff in the
13 Zvornik hospital over the treatment of Muslim children.
14 Dr. Ljiljana Vracevic and Dr. Koviljka Gotovac were particularly
15 caring in doing their work. The witness also claims that none of the
16 nurses expressed any religious bad feelings towards the patients.
17 The pediatricians did not have any problems with the nurses
18 either. The witness claims that she would certainly have known if there
19 was any conflict in July 1995 between Dr. Gotovac and the nurses with
20 respect to admitting the little boy to the ward.
21 During October 2007, the witness had a meeting in Zvornik in the
22 hospital in the office of the chief of pediatrics. They met with the
23 Defence team of Drago Nikolic where they discussed the treatment of
24 patients in the Zvornik hospital in July 1995, as well as providing
25 statements about these facts to the Defence team.
1 On that occasion, the witness remembers the conversation, and
2 what Dr. Gotovac said, and she was the doctor who admitted the boy to the
3 ward and treated him in July 1995. Dr. Gotovac said at the time that due
4 to the treatment of Muslim children and the boy, she never had any
5 conflicts with other doctors on that score or with the nurses either.
6 The witness also remembers that Dr. Gotovac confirmed that neither her --
7 that her family, the Gotovac family never had any unpleasantness because
8 of that either.
13 I think there was a mistake in the transcript. And my colleague
14 has just drawn my attention to that. In reading the summary at the
15 beginning of the sentence which reads: (redacted)
17 (redacted) I
18 think that I have corrected the mistake in the transcript now. That I
19 read it out properly.
20 That concludes the summary pursuant to the rule, Rule 92 ter.
21 Q. Mrs. Jovicic, does the summary which I've just read out reflect
22 the contents of the statement you gave and the additional statement you
24 A. Yes, it does. In full.
4 Q. The facts contained in the statement, do they say exactly what
5 you would testify about in this Court of law had you been asked about the
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. At this point in time, I'd like to tender the witness statements,
9 the statement of Vela Jovicic, it is 3D472, Exhibit 3D472.
10 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.
11 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] I have a few additional questions
12 for this witness before I conclude the examination-in-chief, if I may.
13 Q. Mrs. Jovicic, in preparing for this testimony, did you look
14 through any hospital documents, and if so, what?
15 A. Yes, I certainly did. I looked at all the medical documentation
16 including the history of the -- case history, the patient chart, the
17 letter from the hospital releasing the patient.
18 Q. From that documentation, could you determine when you were on
19 duty in July 1995?
20 A. Yes, but may I just take out this piece of paper to remind me of
21 the dates, I prepared them. Dr. Koviljka admitted the boy in the night
22 during the 14th and 15th at 0300 hours. That is to say, the next day.
23 We worked 24 hour shifts. There was just one pediatrician for a 24-hour
24 shift. Now the next day, between the 15th and 16th, Dr. Vracevic came by
25 and she was the head of the children's ward. On the 16th, between the
1 16th and 17th, I arrived, that is to say, Dr. Jovicic, that's me, and
2 that's when I found the boy there.
3 Q. Thank you.
4 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone counsel, please.
5 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. I'd now like to show you a photograph which I'd like you to take
7 a look at and tell us who is on the photograph. It is Exhibit P2452, and
8 may we have it displayed on e-court, please?
9 JUDGE KWON: It should not be broadcast.
10 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] That's right, not in public
12 Q. Do you recognise the people on the photograph?
13 A. Am I allowed to state the name?
14 Q. No, we can move into private session for that.
15 JUDGE KWON: For the safety we better go into private session,
16 albeit briefly.
17 THE REGISTRAR: We are in private session.
18 [Private session]
3 [Open session]
4 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Thank you.
5 Q. When you came to the hospital to take up your shift from the
6 previous doctor on duty, what would you talk about, what would you
8 A. When one doctor took over from another, well, we started at
9 7 a.m.
10 each individual patient from one room to the next. And along with this
11 oral reporting, there would be a written report as well, a notebook, in
12 which we recorded everything that had taken place in the last 24 hours.
13 So when a doctor was on duty for 24 hours, he would write a report in
14 this notebook and he would also report orally to the next doctor taking
15 up his shift.
16 Q. Apart from that, was other information exchanged with respect to
17 personnel relations at the clinic, in the hospital?
18 A. Well, yes. Interpersonal relations also come within the
19 framework of professional relationships; the relationships between the
20 doctors; the doctors and the nurses; the doctors, nurses and patients; or
21 the parents and relatives of a patient. All that was part of our job,
22 part of the job of the doctor on his 24-hour shift and everything had to
23 be recorded concisely and precisely.
24 Q. And what were your professional relationships like with
25 Dr. Gotovac and Ljiljana Vracevic [Realtime transcript read in error
1 "Jelena Vratovic"]?
2 A. They were professionally good.
3 Q. I'd like to correct something in the transcript. 72, line 9, the
4 name is Ljiljana Vracevic, whereas in the transcript it says
5 Jelena Vratovic. It is Ljiljana Vracevic, L-j-i-l-j-a-n-a
7 When you took over your duty on that day, the 16th of July, was
8 anything special -- any special information imparted to you with respect
9 to the admission of the boy.
10 A. Everything. I was told everything. When he was brought to
11 hospital, when he was admitted, what room he was in, what his health
12 situation was like, who treated him, everything. And we, of course, went
13 to visit the child, the boy. That's what you do when you take over from
14 the previous shift, you take each individual person in turn.
15 Q. Did anyone tell you, the doctor you took over from or anybody
16 else, whether there had been any incidents or whether any of the nurses
17 had attacked and confronted Dr. Gotovac for taking in a Muslim patient?
18 A. No.
19 Q. In the course of those few days in July 1995, did it ever happen
20 that Dr. Koviljka Gotovac complained to you that she had problems because
21 of having (redacted) and treated him, that she
22 had certain problems with any of the nurses?
23 A. No, no problems whatsoever.
24 Q. Having in mind your professional relationship as you described
25 it, had there been such an incident, would you have been informed by
1 other doctors, in particular by Dr. Gotovac?
2 A. Yes, I would have.
3 Q. Would the then hospital director, Dr. Galic [as interpreted],
4 been informed of that?
5 A. Yes, most definitely.
6 Q. In that case, would certain measures have been undertaken against
7 the medical professional?
8 A. A disciplinary procedure is a must in such incident situations.
9 JUDGE KWON: The answer was too quick --
10 MR. VANDERPUYE: Indeed, too quick.
11 JUDGE KWON: -- for the objection. Shall we proceed.
12 MR. VANDERPUYE: Yes, Mr. President. I just want to caution my
13 colleague that I think her questions are leading. As to the nature of
14 the objection, I would ask her to refrain from that as she proceeds.
15 JUDGE KWON: Again, if you could put a pause between the question
16 and the answer, please. Proceed.
17 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours. At this
18 moment I would kindly ask to move into closed session because of the few
19 next questions I have for the witness.
20 JUDGE KWON: Yes, we are now in private session.
21 [Private session]
22 [Open session]
23 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] There is a mistake in the
24 transcript, page 74, line 17. We won't mention any names, Mrs. Jovicic,
25 just a question I have for you.
1 Q. Did you see the gentleman's wife?
2 A. Yes, I met her by chance.
3 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours. Thank
4 you, Mrs. Jovicic. I have no further questions.
5 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreters did not hear the witness's
6 answers since it overlapped with Ms. Nikolic's remark.
7 JUDGE KWON: I don't know what she said, probably thank you.
8 Would there be cross-examination by any of the Defence teams? I see
9 none. Mr. Vanderpuye.
10 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President. I think I can be
11 brief, I hope so.
12 Cross-examination by Mr. Vanderpuye:
13 MR. VANDERPUYE: I wondered if my colleagues could be so kind as
14 to give me a copy of the notes that the witness has. I don't know if you
15 were aware that she had them, but I wondered if I might have a copy of
16 them at some point.
17 Q. Good afternoon to you, Dr. Jovicic.
18 A. Good afternoon.
19 Q. My name is Kweku Vanderpuye. On behalf of the Prosecution, I'm
20 going to put some questions to you in respect of your statements and also
21 in respect of your direct examination. If there's any question that I
22 ask you that is unclear to you, right away just let me know and I will
23 try to rephrase it in a way that we can understand each other better, and
24 hopefully this will go a little bit more easily.
25 Now, you met with the Defence, I believe, as recently as
1 yesterday; right?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And with respect to that meeting you discussed what you would be
4 testifying here today about; right?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Okay. And you went over the statements that you had previously
7 given; right?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. And you also met with the Defence, I believe, on 4th of August,
10 2007; yes?
11 A. That is correct.
12 Q. You met with them again on the 1st of October, 2007; right?
13 A. [No interpretation]
14 Q. I'm sorry, I didn't get your answer for the record.
15 A. Correct.
16 Q. Okay. And you met with them again on the 21st of March, 2008
17 A. That is correct.
18 Q. In relation to these three meetings that you had with the
19 Defence, you discussed the subject matter of the statement that you
20 ultimately signed on 23rd March 2008
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. And of course before you signed that statement, you had an
23 opportunity to review it carefully?
24 A. That is correct.
25 Q. And you had an opportunity to remove or change any of its
1 content; right?
2 A. That is correct.
3 Q. And then on the 27th of May in 2008 you signed a second
4 statement; right?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. And that was following the 21st March meeting you had with the
7 Defence; right?
8 A. Yes, it is.
9 Q. And in that second statement, that's the 27th of May, 2008,
10 statement, you recount this meeting that you had with Dr. Gotovac in the
11 office of the chief of the pediatrics ward of the Zvornik hospital;
13 A. That is correct.
14 Q. And it's in that statement that you say, as you've said today,
15 that Dr. Gotovac made certain comments about her experience treating
16 Muslim children in 1995; right?
17 A. Yes, it is.
18 Q. And in particular with respect to an incident concerning this
19 nurse; right?
25 Q. Okay. Now, what is contained -- the information that's contained
1 in your 27th May statement is information that you had when you made the
2 previous statement, isn't it?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Okay. And so the reason why I'm asking you this question is that
5 if on the 23rd of March, 2008, you already had had this meeting and
6 conversation with Dr. Gotovac, it doesn't appear in that statement and it
7 only appears in your 27th May statement; right?
8 A. That is right. Why?
9 Q. Is that because you didn't mention this when you met with the
10 Defence on the 23rd of March or is that because you simply overlooked the
11 fact that it was missing from that statement?
12 A. No, everything was public. Everything was told. I don't know
13 how the Defence took note of it. I don't know that. Nothing was hidden,
14 kept were them.
15 Q. So you don't know --
16 JUDGE KWON: Just a second, Mr. Vanderpuye. If Madam Nikolic
17 would take a look at line 21 to 25 of previous page, I was wondering just
18 out of an abundance of caution, did we not deal with this information in
19 private session? Or it is okay?
20 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honours, I think we dealt
21 with it in private session.
22 JUDGE KWON: Yes, we'll take care of it and let's proceed.
23 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President.
24 Q. All right. So you don't know how it came to be that this
25 information was put into two separate statements?
1 A. Well, I spoke with Ms. Nikolic and other members of her Defence
2 team before the meeting with Dr. Gotovac. I told them then that I had to
3 contact my head first. I was doing my shift for 24 hours, I didn't admit
4 the child. At that time I was employed by the hospital and now I have a
5 contract with them. I had to talk to my head and the doctor who had
6 admitted the child. I can stand by my findings and the information I
7 heard about. I cannot represent here someone else who should speak on
8 their own behalf about their work, and that was my position since day
9 one. I never tried to pose as someone who admitted the child, and right
10 now I only have a contract with the pediatrics ward. I am employed by
11 the health centre. The head nowadays of the pediatrics is Dr. Gotovac.
12 It was Dr. Vracevic who dismissed the child, discharged him from the
13 hospital, and I only had my 24-hour shift during that time.
14 Q. All right. Now, according to your review of the medical records
15 before you came to testify here today, is it your testimony that your
16 shift started on the 16th or on the 17th of July? I think you've got it
17 right there, that note; right?
18 A. Yes. My shift began on the 16th at 700 hours. The 16th in the
19 morning and lasted until the 17th.
20 Q. So you don't actually have any firsthand knowledge of the
21 circumstances under which the child was received in the hospital?
22 A. Yes. No firsthand knowledge, only secondhand. I wasn't witness
23 to it. However, I did keep treating him later on.
24 Q. All right. So you don't know firsthand circumstances under which
25 he was admitted, who he saw initially?
1 A. Yes, no.
2 Q. What his physical condition was at the time that he was received?
3 A. Yes, yes. It is secondhand and even thirdhand information.
4 Dr. Koviljka, Dr. Vracevic and then myself.
5 Q. Okay. And in fact, you are not certain as to when it was that
6 you began your duty until you had an opportunity to review the medical
7 charts; right?
8 A. I'm completely sure of it. However, a lot of time has elapsed
9 and I need to be precise concerning the dates. Our shift began every day
10 at 7 o'clock
11 a 24-hour shift, that's how we rotated. The medical records are there to
12 have some record of the dates. I cannot remember the dates off the cuff.
13 Q. I understand that. The reason why I'm asking is because that
14 date doesn't appear in your statement of 23rd March, 2008.
15 A. Yes, yes.
16 Q. And the date doesn't appear in your statement of 27th May 2008.
17 A. Yes, you are right.
18 Q. Which suggests to me that you didn't review the medical records
19 between the first time you met the Defence on the 4th August 2007 and
20 October 1st of 2007 or between October 1st 2007 and 21st March of 2008 or
21 between 21st March 2008
22 decided to look at this medical record?
23 A. The meeting at the ward with the head Dr. Gotovac when
24 Drago Nikolic's team arrived, it is then when we looked at the letters of
25 discharge. And then subsequently, I dug up all of the rest, his case
1 history and everything we had on him. I wanted to be as precise as
2 possible concerning any dates. I recall many things about my work but I
3 didn't have all the dates in my head. That's why it was introduced
4 subsequently. You can check all that.
5 Q. Thank you. But when exactly did you look up the dates as
6 concerns your own tour of duty, as it were, in July of 1995? When was it
7 that you looked that up, that you checked it?
8 A. As I said, we went through the documentation. At the time we
9 only had the letter of discharge from the pediatrics. Since I no longer
10 worked there. I then asked the director of the hospital and the head of
11 pediatrics to find the rest of the documents in the archives, that was
12 perhaps some 20 days before getting here. I believed I should not appear
13 before the Court without being certain of the facts and the dates so as
14 to be concise and precise. And they met my request.
15 Q. All right. I understand that. So you hadn't looked at that
16 information before you signed the statements that are being offered in
17 evidence in this case; right?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Okay.
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. And with respect to the information that you received
22 concerning -- concerning the events surrounding the reception of this
23 child at the hospital, you say that's based on second, if not thirdhand
24 information; right?
25 A. That is right.
1 Q. And you would have no independent ability to know whether or not
2 that information was complete; right?
3 A. Well, you don't have that information and you cannot check. If
4 you have no piece of information, you cannot run your checks.
5 Q. Well, you don't know if the information is complete or somebody
6 left something out; right?
7 A. I can tell you a hundred per cent certainly that I never heard of
8 any such a thing. No one told me anything like that. I didn't notice
9 anything of that sort. That is what I can tell you and I also was not
10 present there and then.
11 Q. Are you telling me that as a doctor you've never noticed
12 information in a medical chart that's incomplete? Is that what you are
13 telling me? In all your years as a doctor, you've never seen anything
14 like that?
15 A. I do not understand the question.
16 Q. What I'm getting at is, if you don't have firsthand information
17 about something, and the only way that you learn about something is if
18 somebody told you, you have no way of knowing whether or not what they've
19 told you is accurate or complete; would you agree with that or you
21 A. Well, I cannot agree with that. I cannot check an information
22 that never reached me. All information pertaining to the boy's condition
23 was of interest me, his mental state, medical situation. There were many
24 foreign delegations there and I frequently gave statements. They even
25 took him out of the hospital at times with my prior approval. I was
1 interested in all that information. However, I never came across any
2 information that would indicate that there had been an incident. Had it
3 been so, had I had that information, I would have checked it.
4 Q. I understand that, Doctor. My point is, if that information
5 weren't recorded, you wouldn't know about it; right?
6 A. I'm telling you the very same thing.
7 Q. And the fact that it's not recorded doesn't mean it didn't
8 happen; right?
9 A. I'm telling you what I know.
10 Q. The fact that it's not recorded, doesn't mean it didn't happen;
12 A. Well, you know, everything I could see on the spot, that is what
13 I can stand by when telling you, but I have never heard of these
14 assumptions and I should not discuss them.
15 Q. I'm putting to you, I think, a relatively simple, straightforward
16 proposition. The fact that this information was not recorded in a record
17 that you reviewed does not mean that it didn't happen; right?
18 A. This is all relative. My statement can neither corroborate that
19 nor -- all I can tell you that there was no disciplinary measure
20 instituted, no information. I wasn't present there, and from day one, I
21 was telling the Defence that I wasn't treating the child and that I'm not
22 allowed to give firsthand information. I can only tell you what I did
23 and what the colleagues of mine at the pediatrics ward did while I was
24 there. I did not admit the boy.
25 JUDGE KWON: I don't understand what the topic is, you are moving
2 MR. VANDERPUYE: I am indeed. Thank you, Mr. President.
3 Q. Do you have copies, by the way, of these medical records that you
5 A. No.
6 Q. And do you have copies of these number of statement that you say
7 that you gave to foreign dignitaries and such that came by the hospital?
8 A. No, they were fair. On each occasion they paid maximum attention
9 to the boy, they would take him out for a walk, buy him things and then
10 they would return him to the hospital at the scheduled time.
11 Q. What I mean is, you mentioned that you had given a number of
12 statements to these people that came by the hospital. I wondered if you
13 had copies of those statements?
14 A. No.
15 Q. Okay.
16 A. I'm not sure I understood the question.
17 Q. You had mentioned that there were individuals, groups that came
18 by the hospital while the child was there; right?
19 A. Those were representatives of international organizations of the
20 International Red Cross, et cetera. And on each occasion, if it was my
21 shift, they asked me if I would allow the boy to go into town for a walk.
22 I didn't even ask my head, I would approve that since I believed it to be
23 the humane way. We cooperated well. They would take him out and return
24 him on time. I have no objections there.
25 Q. All right. So you didn't give any statements to these
1 international organizations?
2 A. We talked about it in general about the boy, about his situation,
3 how he is adapting to the newly created conditions, his mental state, his
4 surgical treatment, since it was the surgeons who treated him and we were
5 just providing pediatric care. We discussed such matters.
6 Q. All right. Now, you mentioned previously that you weren't aware
7 that any disciplinary action had been taken as concerns the treatment of
8 this child; right?
9 A. No, I didn't hear of it.
10 Q. Okay. And that's because the information that you were provided
11 with as concerns what happened surrounding the reception of this child at
12 the hospital, that is, that a nurse apparently became upset and
13 threatened one of the doctors, that would be a matter that should be
14 disciplined; right?
15 A. If it indeed happened, then absolutely, yes.
16 Q. And would it be also disciplinary -- well, would it also be
17 subject to discipline if a person were to express ethnic intolerance, as
18 it were, with respect to the treatment of a patient?
19 A. Absolutely. Absolutely. The head submits a disciplinary report.
20 There is a disciplinary commission -- committee that meets in the
21 presence of the hospital director in case of such incidents.
22 Q. What if the person just doesn't feel good about doing something
23 based on an ethnic bias? They don't want to perform a given assignment
24 based upon an ethnic bias but they do it in the end. What about that, is
25 that disciplinary, is that subject to discipline?
1 A. Yes, absolutely.
2 Q. And that's not the kind of thing that a person would express
3 knowingly to certainly not a hospital official; right?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. And certainly you are not aware of anybody expressing reluctance
6 to perform a task or an assignment because they just don't feel good
7 about it because they are dealing with Muslims; right? You are not aware
8 of anything like that, are you?
9 A. Can you give me a little time and the opportunity to clarify
10 something with respect to Muslim patients, although this might be getting
11 away from the topic, but may I be allowed to say something? I'm speaking
12 in my own name.
13 Q. Sure.
14 A. Now, when it comes to the small boy Adnan, he is the boy who came
15 to our ward before the war and he remained there because his parents had
16 divorced. His mother never appeared so we treated him as our child. We
17 loved him so much that when we didn't have -- hardly had anything to eat,
18 we would celebrate his birthday, make a birthday cake and things like
19 that. I took him to the sea side with Zijo, another boy, and I was the
20 only person crying because Adnan put his arms around me and he said,
21 Don't let me go. We loved him. The other mothers didn't cry but I did.
22 And the other boy too, we loved him. And every time I would see him, I
23 would love to take him home to make him some nice lunch, give him some
24 money. So I'm speaking in my own personal name. But the other doctors
25 did, Dr. Vracevic and Stamenkovic and Dr. Koviljka too, we were very much
1 attached to the child. You know, when somebody grows up there in front
2 of you, you love somebody very much. Perhaps sometimes even more than
3 your own children, if I can say that. But that is the humane kind of
4 feelings one feels.
5 So I came to the children's ward in 1993 and there were children
6 there when I arrived. They were all taken care of, they were all
7 exchanged and linked up with their families. I don't want to hold a
8 lecture here but the children's ward, I'm not talking about other wards,
9 but the children's ward was an exemplary ward of how one should care for
10 patients and people in general during the war and was a good example to
11 people and to nurses that there must never be any ethnic bias or any
12 other bias. So I'd like to say this and -- so that people can hear my
13 opinion and how it was.
14 Q. Thank you. Could I have 65 ter 02482B in e-court, please.
15 JUDGE KWON: Yes, Madam Nikolic.
16 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, we haven't received a
17 list of the documents that my learned friend wishes to use during
18 the cross-examination of this witness. So may we be provided by the
19 document -- with the document. And Mr. Ogrizovic is checking his e-mail
20 but it doesn't appear that we received anything.
21 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Vanderpuye?
22 MR. VANDERPUYE: We have been addressing that issue just now,
23 Mr. President, thanks.
24 JUDGE KWON: Okay. Yes, we have Gavric's statement in front of
1 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President.
2 Q. If we could just go to the second page, it's ERN ending 2937. In
3 particular, Dr. Jovicic, I want to just refer you to paragraph 4 of this
4 statement. This is a statement that was given by Dr. Gavric in relation
5 to his involvement with certain Muslim prisoners, patients. And he says
6 in paragraph 4 that in relation to that he made a request to the chief
7 nurse for two nurses to assist in the transport of the patients from
8 Milici to Zvornik hospital. He says, "However, two were not available
9 and only one nurse accompanied me." And he says, "This nurse mentioned
10 that she did not 'feel good' about the assignment since her brother had
11 been killed during the war."
12 Now, it appears that she actually did perform this assignment,
13 but is that kind of behaviour the type of behaviour you observed in the
14 hospital, because she is addressing the director of the hospital.
15 A. Not on my ward. And that deserves to be criticized, that kind of
16 behaviour. Deserves condemnation.
17 Q. You know that that child, when he arrived first at the hospital,
18 didn't go directly to your ward now, don't you?
19 A. Yes, it went to the emergency ward first.
20 Q. And he dealt with nurses at that emergency ward that might not
21 actually be working where you work; right?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. And it also occurs to me that having seen this in a statement of
24 the director of the hospital, that this actually might not be all that
25 sanctionable, do you agree with that?
1 A. Not fully.
2 Q. All right. When you reviewed the documents in relation to the
3 receipt -- reception, I should say, of this child at the hospital, did
4 you learn at any time that he had survived a mass execution along with
5 his father?
6 A. I received information that he was found in a forest and had
7 experienced a trauma. It was terrible. It was a trauma for this small
8 child to have lived through something like that and then to have been
9 found in a forest, so that was the information that the doctor had.
10 Q. I think I misspoke in my question. His father was actually
11 executed. Did you find that information concerning the trauma that this
12 child went through and being found in a forest in a medical record?
13 A. Well, it's like this, since I am a doctor who worked there at the
14 time and that he was in our hospital for six months, the trauma was
15 noticeable. I wasn't there on the first day, but on the second and third
16 day, I could see that the child had been traumatized and it was quite
17 natural that that should have been the case.
18 Q. Do you find in the records that he reviewed that he was found in
19 a forest?
20 A. That's what I was told orally, and that's what was written in the
21 child case history as well.
22 Q. Were you told orally what doctor he first saw when he went there,
23 on the surgical ward, were you told what doctor he saw?
24 A. Dr. Lazarevic was called to the emergency ward. They don't have
25 a children's surgical department but he treated him surgically. Then it
1 was agreed that the child would spend his time in the children's ward
2 because it was a more pleasant atmosphere and that they would come and
3 take him to surgery whenever necessary. And when his condition improved,
4 his wounds were seen to at the children's ward. They didn't have to take
5 him away to the surgical ward to do that later on.
6 Q. Okay. In relation to your conversation with Dr. Gotovac in
7 October of 2007, you said that she indicated that she suffered no
8 problems as a result of having treated this child; right?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. And she also indicated that --
11 A. Correct.
12 Q. She also indicated that her family had suffered no problems as a
13 result of her having treated this child; right?
14 A. That's right.
15 Q. Okay. And in fact, you said that she intended to make a
16 statement to that effect; right?
17 A. Yes, yes.
18 Q. And in fact she didn't make any written statement to that effect;
20 A. That is right because she changed her mind subsequently and the
21 reasons given were for family reasons, which she didn't want to disclose,
22 and we didn't insist upon that. We didn't think we had the right to
23 infringe upon her privacy so that's something she said later on.
24 Q. When you say "we" who are you talking about?
25 A. At the meeting, there was the Defence of Mr. Nikolic and I was
1 there too. However, when they came back again she said that she had
2 changed her mind due to family reasons.
3 Q. All right. And the two of you are not close friends; right?
4 A. We just have a professional relationship that's a good
5 relationship but not privately, no.
6 Q. You don't share any kinds of private issues amongst yourself;
8 A. Not private, no.
9 Q. Okay.
10 MR. VANDERPUYE: Just bear with me for one moment, Mr. President.
11 Thank you very much, Dr. Jovicic. I have no further questions. Thank
12 you, Mr. President.
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you, too.
14 JUDGE KWON: Ms. Nikolic, you have any redirect.
15 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. I do have a few
16 questions for this witness but it seems that we are just two minutes
17 before the end of the session. And since the cross-examination of the
18 Prosecution lasted much longer than they indicated, I'd like to look
19 through the transcript and leave my few questions for tomorrow, if I may.
20 MR. VANDERPUYE: Mr. President, I just want to alert the Court
21 that I believe our estimate was an hour for this witness and I think I've
22 done better than that.
23 JUDGE KWON: Ms. Nikolic, I wonder whether you can finish in 5
25 MS. NIKOLIC: [Microphone not activated]
1 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone please counsel.
2 MS. NIKOLIC: [Interpretation] I think that would be -- would not
3 be possible, Your Honour. Even with the best will in the world.
4 JUDGE KWON: I have to ask then whether Doctor would be available
5 tomorrow afternoon?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If need be then, yes, what can I
7 do. I will.
8 JUDGE KWON: There seems no other way. Then we'll adjourn until
9 tomorrow afternoon, quarter past 2
10 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.43 p.m.
11 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 16th day of
12 September, 2008, at 2.15 p.m.