1 Tuesday, 12 December 2006
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 2.15 p.m.
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Registrar, could you please call
6 the case.
7 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] Case number IT-04-74-T.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Good afternoon to everybody, the
9 Prosecution, Defence counsel, and the accused. Before we bring in the
10 witness, we have a very brief oral decision, the decision on admission of
11 evidence introduced through Witness CH. He appeared in the hearing of
12 28th November, 2001.
13 The Prosecution tendered exhibits that we decided to admit, P
14 09749 under seal, admitted because they are of relevance and have certain
15 probative value. P 09760 under seal, P 03134, P 03105, P 03110.
16 The Chamber reminds you that P 03075 has already been admitted
17 through Witness CE.
18 The Chamber notes that the Defence did not tender any evidence,
19 any exhibits.
20 I would now like the usher to drop the blinds and bring in our
21 witness. Meantime, the registrar will give us the IC number for the
23 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President. [In
24 English] Through Witness CN will be given IC 169. Thank you.
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Mundis.
1 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you, Mr. President. Good afternoon, Your
2 Honours, counsel, and everyone in and around the courtroom. While the
3 witness is being brought in, perhaps if we could make a quick inquiry from
4 the Stojic and Coric Defence teams with respect to whether or not they
5 will be filing a response concerning the Prosecution appeal of the
6 decision cutting the time for the Prosecution. I ask because the
7 Prosecution may seek leave to reply in the course of that appeal, and we
8 have yet to see responses from the Coric and Stojic teams. I'm just
9 curious if they are going to be filing responses, and if so, perhaps we
10 could get an indication as to when we might expect to see that.
11 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Your Honour, we are consulting right
12 now in order to make that decision, and we will make it within -- before
13 the end of tomorrow, and we'll have course let know the Prosecution and
14 the Trial Chamber.
15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you.
16 [The witness enters court]
17 WITNESS: WITNESS CQ [Resumed]
18 [Witness answered through interpreter]
19 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Witness. You
20 can sit down.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honour.
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Ms. Nozica, you have 10 minutes
23 left. Let me remind you we are in open session, so please be cautious.
24 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I will not
25 refer to any names even though they can in no way identify the witness,
1 but still, for the moment let us go into private session to avoid all
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Registrar, please.
4 [Private session]
11 Pages 11507-11509 redacted. Private session
11 [Open session]
12 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] We are in open session,
13 Your Honour.
14 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you.
15 Cross-examination by the Accused Praljak:
16 Q. [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Witness.
17 A. Good afternoon.
18 Q. Who was the Territorial Defence in Stolac established in the
19 spring of 1992 supposed to fight?
20 A. Against the Serbian aggressor that came to the plateau.
21 Q. Tell me, as a member the Territorial Defence, did you have a
22 weapon, and, if you did, who did you get it from?
23 A. I did not have a weapon, and for the purposes of the Territorial
24 Defence I was a driver on call.
25 Q. Do you know if anybody else in the Territorial Defence was
2 A. There were few weapons, a negligible amount and negligible
3 quality. Mainly hunting rifles. Because it was impossible to buy them
4 and nobody could give them to us, because it was at the very beginning
5 when the Serbian aggressor just arrived at the Dubrava plateau.
6 Q. So you had hunting rifles, privately owned weapons.
7 A. Yes, and they were probably licensed.
8 Q. A logical question arises: If the Territorial Defence, when the
9 Serbian -- when the Yugoslav army arrived and later the Montenegrin army
10 was equipped in such a way they were unable to put up any resistance or
12 A. No, they could not until the HVO came to the Dubrava plateau.
13 Q. We know from previous evidence that after reservists came from
14 Montenegro, a large number of Muslims - and we know that Croats fled
15 earlier - crossed over to the western part of Herzegovina and elsewhere by
16 crossing the Neretva and in other ways. Did you join them?
17 A. Yes, I did cross over the Neretva and stayed there for a short
19 Q. Can you tell me when and what was that short period of time that
20 you spent elsewhere?
21 A. I really can't remember when.
22 Q. Thank you. Did you know that on the right bank of the Neretva in
23 Medjugorje and in Ljubosko various units were being formed made up the
24 Muslims and that they were training in that territory?
25 A. I heard a few things about that.
1 Q. Did you sign up into those units?
2 A. Yes, I had signed up.
3 Q. Were you part of those units? Did you train?
4 A. No, I did not train, but I was with them for a couple of days.
5 Q. Do you know that those units received rifles and weapons, and do
6 you know from whom?
7 A. None of the men with whom I was had received any weapons. They
8 were turned back home a few days later. They had no weapons. You can
9 check that. Maybe you have documents to that effect.
10 Q. Since you say that you were there just a few days, are you
11 speaking for yourself or do you know that the other groups didn't receive
12 any weapons or training?
13 A. I'm speaking for myself and the seven or eight people who were
14 with me. I state with full responsibility that that was the case.
15 Q. Thank you. Do you know which units, which HVO units, took part in
16 the liberation of Stolac in June 1992?
17 A. Please believe me when I say I don't know.
18 Q. Do you know how long the operation to liberate Stolac lasted in
19 June 1992?
20 A. I don't remember.
21 Q. Do you know which units of the BH army took part in the liberation
22 of Stolac in June 1992?
23 A. Not a single unit of the BH army took part in that in June 1992.
24 Not a single unit took part because the -- it didn't exist, the Bregava
25 Brigade. There were just these members of the TO with the hunting rifles.
1 Those people took part. And two or three men who had the money to buy
2 rifles, they had them. As far as I know, those were the three men.
3 Q. Did you learn later on how many soldiers of the HVO were killed
4 and how many wounded in the operation to liberate Stolac in June 1992?
5 A. All I know is that three young guys, three or four -- I think it's
6 three young guys were killed.
7 Q. Do you know anything about whether the -- Bajro Pizovic who was
8 later commander of the Bregava Brigade took part in liberating Stolac from
9 the aggressor?
10 A. I really don't know. I don't know.
11 Q. You said that the HVO was composed of Croats and Muslims alike,
12 that there were a large number of Muslims in its units.
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Does that mean that the HVO was a multi-ethnic army?
15 A. Well, yes. Normally that was the case until you know what
17 Q. Now, in the Bregava Brigade of which you were a member, were there
18 any Croats?
19 A. In the Bregava Brigade. Well, there was not a single Croat in the
20 Bregava Brigade to the best of my knowledge.
21 Q. Thank you. Did somebody from the HVO in any way whatsoever
22 prevent the establishment of the Muslim Bregava Brigade of the BH army?
23 A. I don't know that. I'm not well-versed in things like that.
24 Q. What about the Bregava Brigade? Was it armed? Did people have
25 weapons? Did they have mortars, boots, uniforms, RPGs, and the like,
2 A. Yes, but to a lesser extent, as far as I know.
3 Q. What about 82-millimetre mortars? How many would you say? You
4 said few of them, but how many do you say -- would you say?
5 A. I don't know any of these numbers or figures. I don't know how
6 much of what there was. I didn't count anything. All I knew was to do my
7 job, so I can't answer that.
8 Q. Now, up at the brigade's positions, did you see an anti-aircraft
9 gun, the PAT, at any time?
10 A. I think I did.
11 Q. Did you see a Zolja? Do you know what a Zolja is and an RPG is?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Did the Bregava Brigade receive its weapons through the HVO from
14 Croatia or from some other source?
15 A. I really don't know. I know nothing about things like that, where
16 they got them from, how. That wasn't something that interested me, nor
17 was it my job.
18 Q. Well, since you were a driver --
19 A. Yes, I was.
20 Q. -- do you know where the ammunition came in from, from the
21 brigade, because there was some shooting here and there. So where did the
22 ammunition come from?
23 A. Well, let me repeat once again that I don't know anything about
24 things like that. I was in the town of Mostar driving around. I didn't
25 go further than that general area.
1 JUDGE TRECHSEL: I'm sorry, I have a question which probably you
2 are best qualified to answer, Mr. Praljak. What is a Zolja?
3 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] It's like this. It's an
4 anti-armoured device, a very light device, just several kilogrammes. It's
5 a hand-held rocket launcher. You can hold it on your shoulder. You have
6 a tube, a barrel, and you can see them in the films. It's what the
7 terrorists very often use to destroy cars, tanks, that kind of thing.
8 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Thank you. And I know that from my own shooting
10 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] I know that the Swiss are
11 duty-bound to protect their country and very often have weapons which they
12 can keep at home, but I know that there were never any killings and deaths
13 caused by the weapons they keep at home. They are such a highly
14 disciplined nation, which unfortunately we -- well, at least that's what
15 some sociological studies say.
16 Q. Now, whose trucks -- whose trucks were they that you drove? Did
17 they belong to you privately or to some company?
18 A. They were my private vehicles.
19 Q. And what about all the rest?
20 A. Most of the vehicles were privately owned, mostly. Not mostly but
21 all of them, in fact.
22 Q. And tell me this, please: You said yesterday that you know what
23 the -- the line that the -- the front line that the Bregava Brigade
24 covered, how long was it?
25 A. Well, I can't really answer that. In kilometres I can't tell you.
1 It's something I don't really know about. It went right up to the HVO,
2 where the HVO held the line. I don't know how far that is or what
3 distance it is, but I know that the lines were up at Rotimlja, and so on
4 of the how long they were, I can't say.
5 Q. Thank you. May we please go into private session for my next
6 questions because I need to name names?
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Mr. Registrar,
8 private session, please.
9 [Private session]
11 Pages 11517-11564 redacted. Private session
12 [Open session]
13 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] We are in public session.
14 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Does the next witness require
15 protective measures, Prosecution?
16 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you, Mr. President. I believe my colleague
17 Mr. Poryvaev who is standing right outside would be in the best position
18 to answer that question. If you could just give us a moment while we do a
19 slight rotation here.
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I have to greet Prosecutor
21 Poryvaev. It's been a while since we've last saw you. It's a pleasure to
22 have you back. Mr. Poryvaev, can you tell it us with the witness who is
23 going to come in soon? Did he ask for protective measures?
24 MR. PORYVAEV: Your Honour, our next witness is Ismet Poljarevic.
25 He doesn't request any protective measures. He's ready to testify in open
1 session. Thank you very much.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I see that you planned to have
3 one hour in direct examination. So the Defence would also have one hour
5 Let us ask the usher to bring the witness in.
6 We are going to take a break at quarter past 5.00, because our
7 normal schedule was slightly disrupted today.
8 Let us use these few minutes. Registrar, let us move into private
10 [The witness enters court]
11 [Private session]
20 [Open session]
21 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] We are in open session.
22 WITNESS: ISMET POLJAREVIC
23 [Witness answered through interpreter]
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Good evening, Witness. I'm
25 going to first check you can hear everything and whether you understand.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I can hear you and understand.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Can you please give me your
3 first and last name, date of birth.
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Ismet Poljarevic, born on the 17th
5 of May, '57.
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] What is your current
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Currently I work in -- on a
9 production line.
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Have you ever testified before,
11 before a court concerning events that took place in your country
12 between '92 and '94, or is it the first time you are appearing as a
13 witness before a Court?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I testified already before a court
15 in Germany.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So you testified before a court
17 already in Germany. Was that a trial concerning the events in your
18 country between '92 and '95, or does it concern something else entirely?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I think it concerns those events,
20 because it had to do with Ante Prlic, who was chief of the camp of
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] This German court, did it bring
23 in a verdict?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know.
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] And you testified as a victim or
1 as a witness?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know. I think I testified
3 as a victim.
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Would you please now
5 read from the document given you by the usher.
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
7 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you. You can sit down.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Sir, since you
11 already have some experience of courtrooms, you will realise that the
12 procedure in Germany is very different from the one here in as much as the
13 questions are not asked by the Judges but first by the Prosecution and
14 then by Defence counsel, which doesn't mean that Judges, too, will not ask
16 Please try to be clear and precise in answering these questions,
17 and very importantly, if you are talking about something you saw with your
18 own eyes, emphasise that, as opposed to things that you heard or found out
19 from others, from speaking to others. If you have any difficulty
20 whatsoever, do not hesitate to let us know.
21 The Prosecution will have one hour to question you. He will maybe
22 show you documents related to his questions, after which Defence teams
23 will have one hour to question you.
24 All this will go very fast, and in the best of scenarios, you may
25 not have to come back tomorrow, but perhaps you will. We do not know
2 We have 15 minutes left before the next break, and the Prosecution
3 will begin their direct examination now, after which, in 15 minutes, we
4 will have to take a break for technical reasons of about 20 minutes.
5 The Prosecution has the floor.
6 MR. PORYVAEV: Thank you, Your Honour, but short information about
7 Witness Poljarevic, about hearings he took part in Germany. It was
8 understood from his explanation yesterday it was a sort of preliminary
9 hearing, not a full-fledged trial where he was brought under oath. So
10 that was his court experience.
11 Now, a short summary. Ismet Poljarevic lived in Sovici. He was a
12 member of the local defence forces.
13 On the 17th of April, 1993, when the Croatian Defence Council
14 units from Jablanica attacked the village, in the morning the witness was
15 in the village and saw some HVO soldiers and also saw some soldiers who
16 were wearing HV uniform and insignia. The local Muslim unit commander
17 Dzemal Ovnovic decided to surrender to the HVO and which most of his
18 soldiers did.
19 The men and women were separated from -- sorry, men and women were
20 separated and imprisoned in the primary school in Sovici. The witness was
21 interrogated by some HVO soldiers and was severely beaten. They also took
22 away his and his brother vehicles and they were never given them back.
23 Muslim men from the school building were transferred to the
24 Ljubuski prison, then most of them were transferred to the Heliodrom
25 prison. While being in the Ljubuski military prison, Ismet Poljarevic was
1 involved in forced labour and also got information about Ljubuski inmates
2 being beaten by the military police.
3 On the 17th of May, 1993, Ismet Poljarevic with two other inmates
4 was taken to Mostar on Ante Prlic order - Ante Prlic was commander of the
5 Ljubuski military prison - and he was proposed to do some job for the HVO
6 as a driver. Ismet Poljarevic refused to do this job, making reference to
7 the fact that he knew the Mostar area pretty badly. Then he was taken to
8 the mechanical faculty building which was used by the military police as a
9 sort of headquarters where he was kept for about three days and was
10 severely beaten. After that, the witness was returned to Ljubuski and at
11 the end of May was transferred to Heliodrom. In Heliodrom the witness was
12 kept until the 1st of March, 1994.
13 That is my summary. And now some -- just questions.
14 Examination by Mr. Poryvaev:
15 Q. Mr. Poljarevic, did you really give a statement to the OTP
16 investigator on the 3rd of May, 1997?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Did you give the statement freely, of your own accord, and without
19 any coercion?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. And at the conclusion of the interview were you given to read the
22 witness statement in your own language?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Did you tell the truth to the investigator?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Did you sign your statement?
2 A. Yes.
3 MR. PORYVAEV: I would like witness to be shown his witness
4 statement. That's our Exhibit P 009726.
5 Q. Witness, it's in your binder. Please open it. That is an English
6 version. Is it your signature in the English version?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Witness, yesterday we had a meeting with you, and you make some
9 corrections and amendments to your statement and also some, let's say,
10 typing -- or errors were rectified.
11 MR. PORYVAEV: I would like to call attention of the Trial
12 Chamber to the amendments made by -- by the witness. Yesterday, the
13 Trial Chamber and the Defence were notified about these amendments and
15 Q. Witness, is it correct that in the school building, I mean Sovici
16 school, you were interrogated by one of the HVO commanders named Ivan, and
17 at that time the minutes were taken by a certain Azinovic; is that
19 A. Correct.
20 Q. Witness, is it correct that your wife and two children were
21 transferred along with other civilians from Sovici to Gornji Vakuf?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Witness, is it correct that the name of detainee you eyewitness as
24 being beaten in the Ljubuski military prison was Junuzovic Feriz?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Witness also wanted to amend his statement by the fact that after
2 he had been released from Heliodrom in March 1994 he learned from his
3 villagers that the four Muslim civilians from the Sovici school had been
4 killed in the courtyard in the Sovici school. They were executed by the
5 HVO soldier. Their names are Ismet Cilic, Hasan Rados, Salem Skampo, and
6 Ekrem Tasic.
7 Is it correct?
8 A. Correct.
9 Q. Mr. Poljarevic also added that Ibro Kukic had been wounded in the
10 area between Stolac and Popovo Polje where he was taking part in the
11 forced labour in the -- being taken from the Ljubuski military prison.
12 Is it correct?
13 A. Correct.
14 Q. Muharem Cilic was wounded in Doljani in April 1993 and was also
15 brought to the Ljubuski military prison; correct?
16 A. Correct.
17 Q. In the military -- in the MUP station in Mostar, in the faculty,
18 in the mechanical faculty building, he was beaten by the military police
19 members with a flag pole. The people who were beating him were dressed in
20 the HVO military police uniform. Is that correct?
21 A. Correct.
22 Q. Dzidic also known as Dzida, was the full name of a person who
23 was in charge of the HVO military police at the MUP station. Is that
25 A. Correct.
1 Q. There were also female detainees in Heliodrom who were kept in the
2 central prison on the attic. Is that correct?
3 A. Correct.
4 Q. One of the guards of Heliodrom, Ante Buhovac, was the one who
5 brought the detainees there. He belonged to the HVO military police.
7 A. Correct.
8 Q. Detainees from Heliodrom were involved in forced labour on the
9 confrontation line even in December 1993 and afterwards. Is it
11 A. Correct.
12 Q. Detainees from Heliodrom Ismet Cilic, Rasim Cilic, Sefik Tasic,
13 and Mustafa Tasic, who had also been arrested in Sovici, were killed while
14 they were performing forced labour on the confrontation lines. Is that
16 A. Correct.
17 Q. HVO representatives before releasing detainees from Heliodrom
18 were proposing that they should go to some third countries. Is that
20 A. Correct.
21 Q. Conditions of detention both in Ljubuski and Heliodrom were
22 deplorable. Is that correct?
23 A. Correct.
24 Q. Ismet Poljarevic also made some slight corrections in the spelling
25 of some names mentioned in the witness statement such as, for example,
1 instead of Junozovic we should read Junuzovic in all cases. This full
2 name mentioned in the statement for several people who are not the same
3 persons, actually, but the spelling should be Junuzovic.
4 And also one point that fell through the crack, on page 6 of the
5 English version, in the first paragraph, a wrong word is used. It should
6 be said that on one occasion the HVO soldiers threatened but not treated
7 with cutting -- yes, to someone. It's just a mistake. Of course in the
8 B/C/S version it's page 5, paragraph 5. Paragraph 5 it's also translated
9 in that way, as though the ears had been cut, but in fact they were
10 threatening with cutting ears.
11 So, Your Honour, only one minute is left for the break. I think
12 that we should take the break and then I will continue.
13 MR. KARNAVAS: And if I may, Mr. President, with all due respect
14 to my colleague, again this is another demonstration where valuable time
15 was spent reading a list when, I do this for the benefit of the members of
16 the Bench who were not here last week, but this is again another example
17 where one question could be posed to the witness. This can be read to the
18 witness outside. He can vouch for it, sign it, and this could be entered
19 into evidence and we don't need to spend all this time. We will assume
20 that these corrections then become part of the statement.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes.
22 Mr. Mundis, in future it would be visible that after the proofing
23 session, once you have corrected this type of document, you could just ask
24 the witness a question and say, "You have made a certain number of
25 corrections. We have made a list of those corrections in a document. Do
1 you confirm?" For example, for this particular witness there were 14
2 corrections. And he can say "yes," and that would be the end of the
3 matter and we could move on.
4 MR. STEWART: Your Honour, while we are dealing with just
5 practical matters like that, I'm not sure, have the Prosecution now
6 dropped the practice which I thought we'd established? An assurance was
7 given to a question by Judge Trechsel the other day that if the summary
8 was not exactly the same as the 65 ter summary it would be provided in
9 advance, or was that? Because the trouble is otherwise we have to check.
10 Was that summary simply a reading out of the 65 ter summary? It's just
11 helpful to know these things in advance.
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes. The second point is that
13 normally the 65 ter summary is communicated to the Defence. I saw it a
14 while ago. It was done a while ago. But for the public, we need to have
15 a reading of the 65 ter when it's -- when we're in open session.
16 So, Mr. Mundis, on those two points, how do the Prosecution view
18 MR. MUNDIS: I'll leave the second point regarding the 65 ter
19 summary to my colleague, but with regard to the first point, certainly
20 compiling a list is -- is one way of doing it, but of course due to time
21 constraints we don't have the ability quite often to produce translations
22 for the benefit of the witness with respect to the changes made to the
23 document, so it's simply not possible in all situations to get the witness
24 to sign a list of any changes or a revised version of the statement, which
25 then requires us or necessitates the type of procedure that was used
2 MR. STEWART: Sorry, Your Honour, what -- when Mr. -- I'm sorry.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Just a moment, please.
4 Mr. Mundis, when you seat witness during the proofing session
5 there's an interpreter who is there, and the interpreter could translate
6 the document and then he can say -- the witness can say, "Yes, I've
8 Mr. Karnavas.
9 MR. KARNAVAS: Especially when the witness in court is shown a
10 French version or English version which they've already initialled and
11 they're asked, you know, can they verify it. I just think if it's read
12 back to them orally and then they -- they initial it, we will accept that.
13 I think it's a principled position that the Defence is taking. We honour,
14 you know, that it will have been read, he signs it, we can move on. Happy
15 ending. We can save some time.
16 MR. STEWART: Your Honour.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Stewart.
18 MR. STEWART: You didn't answer my question, Your Honour, sorry.
19 Yes. He didn't answer my question. A few days ago, Judge Trechsel asked
20 specifically whether it was an assurance had been given -- if the summary
21 was not going to be simply exactly the 65 ter summary the Defence, as we
22 had requested, would be provided with in advance. And the answer was yes.
23 It doesn't seem to be happening. I'm not quite sure who is in charge.
24 When Mr. Mundis says, I leave it to my colleagues, we can't have
25 inconsistent practises according to which Prosecution counsel happens to
1 be dealing with the matter. We have to know.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes. But to clarify this,
3 Mr. Mundis, but I'm sure you've understood. There are 65 ter summaries
4 which are well known to one and all because they were seen out to the
5 Defence. We're talking about the hypothesis where the 65 ter summary is
6 different after the proofing session, that you change certain points after
7 the proofing session, and everybody seemed to agree that should that
8 happen, the Prosecution must then send to the Defence the amended version,
9 the new version.
10 MR. MUNDIS: My colleague informs me, Mr. President, that this --
11 what he read out came directly from the 65 ter summary.
12 MR. STEWART: That's fine then. And if the practice is now
13 consistently adopted in future that's into problem.
14 MR. MUNDIS: I believe what we've said is we would -- we would
15 advise if it's different, and therefore if it's not different there will
16 be no such notification given.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. And following on
18 from Mr. Karnavas's suggestion to have the document in English initialed,
19 just as the witnesses initial their written statement, could the accused
20 proceed in that fashion. After the proofing session, read out the
21 document through an interpreter and then the person can initial it and we
22 can all save time.
23 MR. MUNDIS: Again, I will take all this under advisement and
24 we'll see if we can adopt that. Again, it's not always possible because
25 of the set-ups of the proofing rooms to have a computer. Not all of the
1 rooms we use to proof have computers. Sometimes it's handwritten notes by
2 the lawyer who then takes those back to his or her office and produces the
3 letter that is then transmitted. But we will do our best to read those
4 read those back to the witnesses, time permitting. Of course, that might
5 result in situations where we're proofing in the morning and an afternoon
6 hearing might have to be delayed so that we can we can do that with the
7 witness. We will certainly endeavour to do that in order to expedite the
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] As we're going to have the
10 recess soon, the registrar can furnish you with a portable computer and
11 everything else that you need and then you could do this straight away.
12 MR. MUNDIS: Well, we can certainly see about the availability of
13 laptops. Of course people going on missions have first priority rather
14 than simply using them in building but it's going to be -- I can assure
15 you, Mr. President and Your Honours, as we move to a schedule with full
16 utilisation of all the courtrooms, we're similarly stretched within the
17 office space of the Office of the Prosecutor, in terms of rooms that we
18 can use that are suitable to proof witnesses in. We will see about the
19 availability of laptops and I can see about ensuring that this type of
20 procedure is adopted. But again, it's primarily due to time constraints
21 and resource constraints in terms of rooms that are available that may or
22 may not make it possible in each and every instance to undertake this type
23 of procedure.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Fine.
25 It's 20 past 5.00. We're going to take a 20-minute break and
1 reconvene in 20 minutes' time.
2 --- Recess taken at 5.22 p.m.
3 --- On resuming at 5.40 p.m.
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The hearing is resumed.
5 MR. STEWART: Your Honour, may I say, the summary read out was not
6 the same as the 65 ter summary. I just say that, could we please as for
7 simple, efficient, business-like implementation of the Prosecution assured
8 the Trial Chamber they would do. It is simply not the same.
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
10 Mr. Poryvaev, it seems that what you read out does not correspond
11 to the 65 ter summary.
12 MR. PORYVAEV: I don't hear anything.
13 THE INTERPRETER: Can you hear the English?
14 MR. PORYVAEV: Yes. Your Honour, I just read not the whole thing
15 from 65 ter but a shorter summary, which is more relevant to the case
16 here. Nothing was added. Nothing was skipped. I mean important things.
17 MR. STEWART: I'm sorry, that's not correct. Please. I just
18 invite my learned friend to look at it this evening and see. It's
19 different. He's added some words here. I'm not saying he didn't
20 conscientiously attempt to base it on the summary. There is no allegation
21 of sharp practice. It's just we want a business-like practice that the
22 summary is supplied to us when it's different so we can see it, and we can
23 avoid all this. This is about the fifth time that we've wasted this time.
24 I don't want to be on my feet every few days asking for them please to do
25 what they said they would do.
1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
2 Mr. Mundis, Mr. Scott and all the others representing the
3 Prosecutor, it's very simple. When the summary is identical to the 65 ter
4 summary, then there's no need to provide the contents to the Defence.
5 However, when it is different, when it differs, as Mr. Poryvaev has just
6 told us, because he changed a few words or abridged it, then it should be
7 communicated to the Defence teams. So it's very simple. It seems very
8 simple to me. Perhaps it's more complicated for the Prosecution, but it
9 seems to me to be a very simple matter.
10 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you, Mr. President. We'll do our best to
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Poryvaev, you have the
14 Examination by Mr. Poryvaev:
15 Q. Mr. Poljarevic, if you were to give evidence again in full before
16 this Tribunal, would what you say in your witness statement and the
17 additional information given to us be your testimony today?
18 A. Yes, sir.
19 MR. PORYVAEV: Your Honour, I would like to tender into evidence
20 within statement of Ismet Poljarevic, Exhibit number P 09726.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You have any documents to show
23 MR. PORYVAEV: Yes, Your Honour. I have a number of documents.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Go ahead.
25 MR. PORYVAEV: I would like witness to be shown Exhibit P 02131.
1 Q. This is reported of the command of the police station dated April
2 28, 1993 about the engagement of Jablanica civilian police members in
3 battalion units. Witness, I would like you to take a look at this
4 document. Do you see it? Do you have your binder? Just open the
5 corresponding number and -- or maybe it will be shown on the screen.
6 Witness, have you read the document?
7 A. I haven't read it all yet.
8 MR. KARNAVAS: While the gentleman is reading the document,
9 Your Honour, if I could use this opportunity to once again make an
10 observation that this is a document from -- from the HVO. Obviously the
11 gentleman hasn't seen it. Again, I urge that the practice be adopted
12 where the -- whereby a witness gives a narration and then if the
13 Prosecution wishes to tender documents with the relevant sections to them,
14 they can tie them in, link them, however you wish to call it. But I think
15 this again demonstrates how we spend a lot of time in a procedure that is
16 very much, you know, while it's adversarial, we're moving closer, closer
17 to the continental procedure with these documents, and I think we're
18 wasting valuable time.
19 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The Prosecution, he should have
20 read the document yesterday with you. You should have shown the witness
21 the document yesterday. Did you do so or not? Because if you're showing
22 the witness a document today for the first time, the time it takes him to
23 read is wasting our time. You should have done that work yesterday and
24 then just asked him today this is a document that we saw yesterday, the
25 two of us together. Do you know the document? And then the witness can
1 say yes, and then you can go on and ask your questions on any of the
2 paragraphs of the document.
3 MR. PORYVAEV: Your Honour, the witness was shown a number of
4 documents yesterday. Of course he should have some time to refresh his
6 May I continue?
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes.
8 MR. PORYVAEV:
9 Q. Witness, do you see any of the people -- of the names of people
10 who were familiar to you before in this document?
11 A. Yes, sir, I do see them.
12 Q. For example, who are the people who are mentioned in this
14 A. For example, Andrija Groznica, Andrija Pole, Ivan Groznica, Mato
15 Mijic, Miro Stipanovic, and the other two seem familiar, but I can never
16 remember their names, Vlado Rotim, and Milenko Drinovac.
17 Q. Do you know what was their position in April 1993? What was their
18 occupation, profession?
19 A. They were at the position of attacking Sovici, and they were
21 Q. Did you see them on the 17th of April in Sovici?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Briefly, what happened and in which circumstances did you see
25 A. They were rallying up the population, the Muslims, and searching
1 the village and the houses, and as security.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Sir, I'm going to the heart of
3 the matter, the basic question that we want to know. The names you've
4 indicated, did you know them before the 17th of April, 1993?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, sir. Yes, Your Honour.
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. And on the 17th of
7 April, 1993, you saw them in Sovici as they were gathering up the
8 population; is that right?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
10 MR. PORYVAEV:
11 Q. Did you have any personal contacts with them on that day?
12 A. On the 18th I had personal contact with Andrija Groznica.
13 Q. What happened on the 18th of April?
14 A. He personally, with two other soldiers I didn't know, took me to
15 search my house. They searched the house and confiscated my Peugeot 305
16 passenger vehicle, saloon.
17 Q. Did they confiscate anything else?
18 A. No, nothing else.
19 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Sir, in your language, in
20 English and French it says "confiscated." Was it confiscated? Was it
21 stolen? Was it requisitioned? Do you have a word that could characterise
22 more precisely the situation involving your car?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, the best way that I can
24 describe this is that they took away my car, confiscated it, and that I
25 never saw it again. Under pressure.
1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The word "confiscated," when one
2 confiscates something you might confiscate a toy from a child but you
3 return the toy later on, whereas your car was never returned to you, was
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's right, never. I never saw my
6 car again.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So it was taken away once and
8 for all.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. It was seized once and for
10 all. Confiscated meaning seized, never to be returned.
11 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Witness, did you get any paper related to this
12 car, a receipt, an attestation?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, I didn't receive any paper or
14 any oral explanation either. No receipt or anything like that.
15 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Another question: Did these people wear a
16 uniform when they were coming to your house?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, camouflage uniforms.
18 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Do you know whether they had normal belts or
19 white belts?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I think they had white belts.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] And after the war were you
22 remunerated for this -- the confiscation of your vehicle?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] And you never asked anybody to
25 reimburse you for the value of your vehicle?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. And I never heard of anybody
2 doing anything like that or anybody receiving any reimbursement of any
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] There's another question from
5 the Bench.
6 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Witness, a follow-up question. Did
7 you learn -- did you ever hear of any other cases where vehicles were
8 seized? I'm not going to use the word "requisition," but did the
9 military forces that were there, did they seize other people's vehicles
10 to use for their own purposes, operations and so on, and then given them
11 back, or was your an exceptional case where the vehicle was seized and
12 never returned?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know. There's no rule that
14 says you can take somebody else's property and valuables and never give
15 them back. That's something I've never heard of.
16 MR. PORYVAEV:
17 Q. And what happened to your brother's vehicle?
18 A. My brother had a heavy duty truck that he used for his work. He
19 was a haulier. And it was devastated. It was probably used and
20 destroyed. When it was running, they used it. When it was no use any
21 more, they just left it in quite another area of the village, when it
22 wasn't operational any more.
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You said "they" used it. Does
24 that mean the military police, the "they," or the private individuals for
25 their own purposes?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I have no proof or evidence to say
2 who used it, because there were a number of private citizens living there,
3 Muslims -- or, rather, there weren't any more Muslims there and nobody
4 could see who used them. They are best placed to know who used the
5 vehicles and what they did with them.
6 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Witness, because you were speaking
7 of Muslims who were there, I come back to the question I asked you a
8 moment ago. When the vehicles were confiscated, were seized, or
9 confiscated, to use your own word, were they only vehicles belonging to
10 Muslims, or were they available vehicles belonging to various people?
11 Because if I understand it correctly, those vehicles were used for certain
12 activities and operations. So was it only the Muslim vehicles that were
13 confiscated, or did they take any vehicles belonging to anybody else when
14 they needed them, any other ethnic group?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I don't know whose vehicles
16 were confiscated, whose were seized, except for my own. I know about my
17 own case. And Ibro Kukic, I spoke to Ibro Kukic, who was in the camp with
18 me, and I know he didn't give him the keys to his car or his own car, but
19 they just seized it, used it. So in my opinion, they were property or
20 other vehicles just taken away from Muslims.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You said that a third vehicle
22 was confiscated belonging to Mr. Kukic, and you gave us a small -- told us
23 a small -- a detail there that he didn't give him -- them the keys. Does
24 that mean that those people who took the car didn't use keys but joined
25 the wires to ignite the car, just like when a thief steals a car?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know how they managed to
2 switch the motor on, to ignite the car, but I know that --
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You said that Mr. Kukic told you
4 that he didn't give them the keys. So if they didn't -- he didn't give
5 them the keys, how were they able to set the vehicle in motion, to switch
6 the engine on, motor on?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, they can forcibly take keys
8 from someone, reserve keys or I don't know. I said, sir, that it wasn't
9 Ibro but Himzo Kukic. Himzo Kukic was the name, whereas I heard the word
10 Ibro. Ibro Kukic is Himzo Kukic's father.
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. So it's Himzo Kukic.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So if I understood you well it
14 was the vehicle of your brother, the Peugeot 305 which belonged to you,
15 and the vehicle of Himzo Kukic, and we don't know which make it was. Is
16 that right?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I think the latter was Volkswagen.
18 Because I was driven in that car from the schoolhouse to my own house when
19 they wanted to search my home. The licence plate was Austrian because
20 Himzo worked in Austria.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You see, when the Judges ask
22 questions they always dig up something new.
23 So the Volkswagen had Austrian licence plates, and it belonged to
24 Himzo Kukic. And that car was used to transport you when you left the
25 village; is that right?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] To take me from the school to my
2 house on the day when they conducted the search.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The day when they searched your
4 house, who drove the Volkswagen Jetta with Austrian licence plates?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Andrija Groznica.
6 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Mr. Poryvaev, when you're working with a paper,
7 could you switch off the microphone, please, because it makes noises.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You say the driver of that
9 Volkswagen Jetta that was confiscated was Andrija Groznica. Who was that
10 gentleman? Was that a military police member, a civilian policeman? Who
11 was he?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] He had a military uniform on. I
13 don't know what his duties were. It says here he was a military
15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So is it the same man that we
16 see in document 2131 that the Prosecution has just shown you?
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, that's the document.
18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Please proceed.
19 MR. PORYVAEV: I would like to turn the witness to Exhibit 02177.
20 This is a report of the mixed commission that visited Jablanica -- sorry,
21 Capljina and Ljubuski detention facilities dated the 3rd of May, 1993.
22 Q. Witness, when you were in -- detained in Ljubuski, did you ever
23 see any members of the joint commission that visited that camp?
24 A. No, I did not.
25 Q. Did you hear of such kind of visit of joint commission?
1 A. I heard indeed that a commission was supposed to come, but I
2 didn't see them.
3 MR. PORYVAEV: I would like witness to take a look at paragraph
4 11, which is in English version on page 4. In B/C/S version, on page
6 Q. Have you found it?
7 A. You mean item 11?
8 Q. Yes, item 11. Here according to the conclusion of the commission,
9 individual prisoners complained about the attitude of HVO members when
10 they were captured but not about --
11 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Your Honours. Your Honours, with
12 your leave. I really don't understand this question. If the witness said
13 he had not seen the commission, he had only heard that the commission was
14 supposed to come but had never seen them, I don't understand the question,
15 because this passage has to do with people who did see the commission. I
16 do not see the purpose of this question.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Poryvaev, what is the
18 purpose indeed of your question? You want to establish what? Because the
19 witness has just said he had never seen the commission.
20 MR. PORYVAEV: The witness was detained in Ljubuski for a certain
21 period of time and the commission made some findings about the conditions
22 of detention in Ljubuski and the manner in which detainees were treated
23 there. So as a participant of those events, our witness may give some
24 explanations whether the findings of the commission are consistent with
25 the reality or not. That was the purpose of my exercise.
1 MR. KARNAVAS: Well, Your Honour, if I may just intervene here.
2 First of all, he can ask the gentleman what were the conditions, and he
3 can get a narrative. That's the gentleman's actual testimony. Secondly,
4 there are no conclusions from this report. It's a report. That's all it
5 is, a reporting. But I think if the gentleman were to describe what he
6 saw, what he felt, what he observed, that would be the evidence.
7 Now, I don't think the Prosecution is going to have any difficulty
8 in getting this report in. That's what I'm trying to say. These
9 documents will come in because of the Rules of Evidence that we have
10 adopted at this Tribunal. Then it's for them to dovetail. But to ask him
11 about a paragraph of a report that was generated by some folks that he
12 never saw, I don't see the evidentiary value in this.
13 Now, I don't mind sitting here and going through all these
14 documents, but then you can't have it both ways. Waste the valuable time
15 by going through these documents when you can just get the narration from
16 the witness. In 15 or 20 minutes the witness can tell us what he saw,
17 what he observed, what he knows. That is his evidence. That's the best
18 evidence. The documents can come in to support that evidence or to
19 contradict it one way or the other. And it's up to us, the parties, to
20 argue thereafter.
21 I'm not trying to be difficult. I'm willing to just sit here like
22 a potted plant.
23 JUDGE TRECHSEL: I'm sorry, Mr. Karnavas --
24 JUDGE PRANDLER: May I? Thank you. In order to help
25 Mr. Karnavas, I would like only to ask a question from the witness about
1 one paragraph, a particular paragraph of the report, and it is actually on
2 page 4 of the report. In the English translation, in paragraph 10. And
3 probably he may be able to respond to what I am going to read, of course
4 with translation. And paragraph 10 says: "Among the civilians are 53
5 drivers from the area of Brcko, Tuzla, Zenica, and Novi Travnik who, in
6 transporting goods for the needs of the HVO 108th Brcko and 115th Tuzla
7 Brigade were stopped in Siroki Brijeg and thereupon detained in Ljubuski.
8 Among them is a certain number of private entrepreneurs who have been
9 detained, while their vehicles and freight have been confiscated." End of
10 the quotation.
11 Now, I would like to ask the witness if being there in the --
12 actually in the camp, did he meet any of those civilians who are mentioned
13 here in the paragraph 10, what I just quoted, and those who had been asked
14 to -- to transport goods for the need of the HVO, and also if he met those
15 private entrepreneurs from whom their vehicles and freight have been
16 confiscated. It is my question.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I did meet the drivers whose lorries
18 and freight had been confiscated. What it says here is for the needs of
19 the HVO. I didn't meet such drivers. I met Muslim drivers who had been
20 supplying goods necessary for the survival of the civilian population.
21 That was mainly foodstuffs.
22 JUDGE TRECHSEL: I come back to the intervention by Mr. Karnavas,
23 who normally gives us very valuable lectures on -- on the proceedings.
24 This I did not quite understand, I must say.
25 You have for the second time now in this series of questions to
1 this witness suggested that the witness should tell the story, that he
2 should be let to tell the story. This is a 92 ter case. The story is in
3 the statement. We have it there. It doesn't have to be repeated in the
4 courtroom. That, I would say, is a loss of time.
5 On the other hand, I don't know how many times we have had the
6 situation that one party either presented a witness -- a document to the
7 witness in cases where the witness had no relation to the document
8 whatsoever, but the contents of the document refer to something which the
9 witness could say, "This corresponds to my personal experience," and I
10 thought that what Mr. Poryvaev was doing was exactly in that line.
11 MR. KARNAVAS: Okay. Thank you for this opportunity. I don't
12 want to waste too much time, but it's unfortunate and regrettable that you
13 weren't here last week for a couple of days. I was fresher and probably
14 more articulate at the time, but let me just exactly tell you what I said
15 then. The statement --
16 JUDGE TRECHSEL: I will read it. I will read it very carefully.
17 MR. KARNAVAS: The statement is coming in. I agree with you.
18 That is his testimony, his direct examination. The Prosecution in advance
19 can telegraph to all of us, including the Bench which paragraphs and which
20 portions of document are relevant. The documents can come in. We would
21 know, then, in advance what we need to focus on in our cross-examination.
22 So this way you can circumvent a lot of this unless they need to go into
23 something in particular where there is a need for narration. But that's
24 my whole point. If we know exactly in which paragraphs they're going to
25 ask the witness in a document that's 20 or 30 pages, that focuses
1 everybody's attention that they're only interested in this paragraph. The
2 document is coming in. But we seem to be moving in two different
3 directions. 92 ter is turning into a regular direct examination. Barring
4 a couple of exceptions, it's taking more time than what the rule was
5 intended to prevent.
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] In my capacity as president of
7 the Chamber, I subscribe to what Mr. Karnavas has just said. 92 ter
8 procedure is geared at saving time. Otherwise, we would be hearing
9 witnesses viva voce. However, if we are wasting time with documents that
10 can be introduced through other witnesses or through other procedure, the
11 92 ter procedure is voided of its purpose.
12 The procedure under 92 ter should be something that allows us to
13 admit a written statement plus some documents that do not pose any problem
14 whatsoever, but the substance of documents like this one, for instance,
15 should be dealt with through another witness. Otherwise, we -- there is
16 no point in -- in using 92 ter.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Mundis.
18 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you, Your Honour.
19 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So that everybody understands
20 this well, in the decision which is now pending concerning certification
21 of appeal, we indicated unanimously, we the Judges indicated that it is
22 appropriate for the Prosecution to bring in key witnesses who in that case
23 would testify viva voce and could narrate what had happened to them and
24 could also deal with documents of this kind.
25 Our decision also made it clear that the Prosecution could
1 complete some 92 ter witnesses and corroborate their evidence with 92 bis
2 testimony. All this has been stated in our decision.
3 And in the spirit of that decision, we need to have viva voce
4 witnesses to whom we show documents of the importance like this one has,
5 and through 92 ter witnesses we introduce some documents, additional
6 documents, and through 92 bis witnesses we do not present witnesses.
7 That would allow us, if we respect this procedure, to gain a
8 significant amount of time, and that would justify the abbreviation of the
9 time allowed that we ordered.
10 That is all I want to say, Mr. Mundis, because all this fits very
11 well together. Our decision was not whimsical, as you indicated.
12 MR. MUNDIS: I thank the Presiding Judge for those comments.
13 I don't have anything to add at this point.
14 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] We need to finish, Mr. Poryvaev,
15 therefore, proceed.
16 MR. PORYVAEV: Thank you, Your Honour.
17 Q. Mr. Poljarevic, I would like you to turn to still paragraph 11,
18 item 11 of this document. And in this document, they say that the Croats
19 were alleged to have been excessively rough when they captured inmates,
20 whereas no one complains about how they were treated in prison.
21 My question to you, Witness, actually were you excessively treated
22 by the HVO soldiers when you were arrested in Jablanica -- sorry, in
24 A. Well, they were rough. They were rough. They beat me, and in my
25 book that's called rough.
1 Q. Where did they beat you?
2 A. In the primary school building, in a small room when they were
3 interrogating me.
4 Q. Who was interrogating you, and who was beating you?
5 A. The said gentlemen that we mentioned before, Ivan, and another man
6 who was taking minutes.
7 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter did not hear the name.
8 MR. PORYVAEV:
9 Q. Do you mean Groznica?
10 A. I mean -- I don't mean Groznica. I mean Ivan. They just called
11 him Ivan. I don't know his last name. But judging by everything that I
12 could see, he was leading that action, the attack on Sovici. I didn't
13 know him.
14 Q. Did you see any other Muslim men being beaten in Sovici while you
15 were arrested in that village?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Who was beaten?
18 A. Just, for example, I saw them knifing Muharem Helbet. They knifed
19 him in the buttocks.
20 Q. Who did it?
21 A. They were uniformed soldiers. I didn't know them.
22 Q. In what uniform were they dressed?
23 A. Military camouflage uniforms.
24 Q. Of which unit or troops?
25 A. Well, those were the forces probably of the Croatian army. The
1 HVO, that is. It was already dark. I couldn't see everything, and I
2 wasn't free to look around.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You are confusing us. You said
4 it was either the Croatian army, the HVO, it was dark, "I couldn't really
5 see." In your written statement, however, describing what happened on the
6 10th of April in the village, you said that you had seen HV insignia on
7 the soldiers. Are you mixing these things up in general? How come that
8 you could not distinguish?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm not confusing anything. I saw
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] What do you mean both?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] As far as insignia, I saw insignia
13 of the Croatian army and of the HVO.
14 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You are quite clear on that.
15 You saw both types of insignia?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So you were on the spot. We,
18 the Judges, were not there. We are just trying to understand what
20 In your eyes, were there two different armies involved, the
21 Croatian army and the HVO?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] From what I saw, yes. I cannot give
23 you the exact numbers as to how many troops were involved from which army.
24 It was happening at night. There was no electricity in the village at
25 all. It was a complete blackout, no lighting. I can't be sure that I saw
1 everything very clearly.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] In your written statement you
3 said that on the 17th of April, around 8.00, the HVO attacked the village
4 of Sovici. A unit launched an attack from Jablanica. And you say at the
5 end of that sentence that you saw HV insignia on the soldiers. So that
6 was not at night. That was in the morning. The attack happened in the
8 During the day, in the afternoon, did you see HV insignia on the
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] First of all, HVO units did not come
11 from Jablanica on that day. They withdrew before they planned the attack.
12 They mainly attacked from the village and from the direction of Risovac.
13 They attacked from afar, first of all, and later in the evening when --
14 after the surrender, they felt more free and they gathered freely in the
15 village because they had seen that everybody had surrendered. They had
16 also information about the people who surrendered. And you could see more
17 of them in the village that evening. And the next day on the 18th there
18 were no longer so many of them because the majority had already
19 surrendered and they had moved on, but still not far away.
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You say that there were not so
21 many of them. You mean soldiers?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. There were not so many
23 soldiers. There were less.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Approximately. Dozens,
25 hundreds? How many units approximately? Can you give us a number?
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You could say up to a hundred at
2 that moment around the school building and throughout the village. You
3 couldn't see a hundred of them in one spot, but they were in clusters, in
4 smaller groups, up to a hundred of them.
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Poryvaev.
6 MR. PORYVAEV:
7 Q. Witness, again continuing our conversation about paragraph 11.
8 The commission made the conclusion that there were no complaints about the
9 treatment of the detainees in Ljubuski. Is that correct? How were you
10 treated in Ljubuski?
11 A. I personally was not beaten in Ljubuski, but there was very little
12 room. The place where I was held was very small, and I was taken to do
13 forced labour in the vicinity of Drinovac, in the area of Stolac facing
14 Trebinje, and I was taken also to some private estates to work for some
15 private individuals. The living conditions were very hard. There was a
16 room not bigger than 4 by 2 into which 30, sometimes 40 people were
17 crammed, and they were not allowed to get out at all except for maybe 15
18 minutes twice a day to get something to eat.
19 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I would like to ask the
20 Prosecution for once. This document that you are using, I see that it
21 originates exclusively from the commission of the HVO, and there were
22 three people in it, Davidovic and Kutlesa. There was supposed to be a
23 joint commission including this Davidovic, Kutlesa and members of the
24 ABiH, Pakuc, Hodzic and another one. How come that this document was not
25 also signed by the ABiH side, if you know?
1 MR. PORYVAEV: First of all, the commission did not complete their
2 job in Ljubuski because there were some circumstances when the Red Cross
3 could not reach the area of Jablanica, and for this reason they quit the
4 place. And we can suggest that members of the ABiH commission did not
5 sign simply this document.
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. So it's a document
7 that comes from the HVO and is not a document of the two parties.
8 MR. PORYVAEV: The document was taken from Croatian archive, and
9 that's why it's here in the courtroom.
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] That wasn't my question,
11 Mr. Poryvaev. What I want to know is that the document you're using with
12 this witness is an HVO document, that's all. It's not an HVO-ABiH
14 MR. PORYVAEV: The document is called as a document of the mixed
15 commission, but in fact -- in fact, the document is signed by the HVO
16 part of the commission, only by them. It's a document which came from
18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I see. Well, for the
19 transcript, that must be stated in more precise terms. The document was
20 just signed by the HVO.
22 MR. PORYVAEV:
23 Q. Witness, you just told the Chamber that you were not beaten in
24 Ljubuski, but did you eyewitness anyone being beaten in Ljubuski?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Who was beaten?
2 A. I said Junuzovic, the one I saw being beaten.
3 Q. By whom was he beaten?
4 A. He was beaten by those -- the guards, the guards of that
6 Q. And who was the commander of the guards?
7 A. The commander of the prison was Ante Prlic.
8 Q. To what military formation did he belong?
9 A. Ante Prlic? Well, I don't know which military formation. He was
10 head of the camp in Ljubuski. So I don't know how else to answer that
12 Q. In which uniform was he dressed? What kind of uniform was he
13 wearing, and what kind of uniform were the guards wearing?
14 A. They were wearing camouflage uniforms, patterned uniforms, and
15 white belts.
16 Q. I would like you to take a look at item 12 of this same document.
17 In this paragraph 12, they say about people who were complaining of --
18 about injuries, and they say: "The commander of the Sovici battalion
19 referred to an injury of his tooth and eye, while Muharem Cilic has an
20 entry and exit wound of the upper leg. In addition, Ibro Kukic complained
21 that he was wounded by a grenade while he was engaged in manual labour in
22 Popovo Polje."
23 When they say -- yes.
24 A. Yes, they did complain and asked for assistance which they were
25 never given. I mean, medical assistance from a doctor.
1 Q. When they refer to some commander of the Sovici Battalion, do you
2 know whom they mean?
3 A. I think they mean Dzemal Ovnovic.
4 Q. Did you see him in Ljubuski?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Did you see his injuries?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Do you know how he had got those injuries?
9 A. Well, while we were travelling from Sovici to Sovici, when the
10 bus -- when the bus got lodged in the mud and we stopped for two or three
11 hours, weren't able to move until a vehicle came to pull us out. We were
12 stuck in the mud. So while we were waiting there stuck in the mud for the
13 bus to be pulled out of the mud by this other vehicle, they beat Dzemal
14 up. He was beaten up most. Other people were hit once or twice, but he
15 was really beaten up.
16 Q. Do you know a person whose name is Muharem Cilic?
17 A. Yes, I do.
18 Q. Did you see him in Ljubuski?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Did you see his injuries?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Do you know what happened to him that he got such kind of
24 A. He tried to go from Sovici to Jablanica. He didn't want to
25 surrender. There was several others in that group, and when they tried to
1 escape the Croatians -- or, rather, the HVO soldiers shot at them, and
2 that's how he was wounded. And today he has -- well, he's a very serious
3 invalid today because the injuries were very serious.
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, while I was listening
5 to you, I was also reading the document, so I'd like you to tell me,
6 because we Judges have to rule on the conditions of detention in that
7 particular prison, so take a look at paragraph 4 of the report where it
8 says that each prisoner had a bed, a covering, that you received three
9 meals a day, that you were able to take a bath, and that you had access to
10 various hygienic facilities and also received medical attention.
11 So you who were there. What it says here, does that correspond to
12 the reality of the situation or not?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, it does not.
14 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. So if I can address
15 the details now. Did you have a bed, you yourself, to sleep on?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Did you have a covering of some
18 sort to keep you warm? But as it was autumn and winter, perhaps it wasn't
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Do you mean while we were in
21 Ljubuski or some other place?
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, in Ljubuski.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] We had, let's say, 10 blankets at
24 the most for 30 of us in the room we were in. So we lived there. It was
25 a 4 by 2 room, about 30 of us, and we had at most 10 blankets. We laid
1 down on the ground. We couldn't even lie down. We were next to each
2 other, so many people, one on top of each other.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Did you receive three meals a
4 day? That is to say, breakfast, lunch, and dinner in the evening. Did
5 you have three meals a day as it says here?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, two.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] When?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] During the day we had two meals.
9 Breakfast, which was just some sort of spread, and a cooked lunch.
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. And as far as
11 washing is concerned, was there any water, toilets, showers? Could you
12 wash yourself or not?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In Ljubuski there was just one
14 toilet, and it was a terrible sight to behold. One for all the detainees.
15 And we just washed once while we were in Ljubuski, and that was on the
16 17th of May. They took us by bus to Capljina.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] And when somebody was ill, could
18 a doctor come and examine that person and prescribe any medication?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] In this report it also says that
21 they identified 42 civilians and 66 military men. The difficulty was that
22 the military men didn't have any ID cards on them, but they did not come
23 across anybody who was wounded and injured, with the exception of one
24 particular person whose name was Omer Filandra [phoen], who had inflicted
25 an injury on himself and was hospitalised. Did you know about that, that
1 this person injured himself and was hospitalised? Because that's what it
2 says here.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, I don't know about that.
4 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Your Honour, if I may be of
5 assistance. If we look at point 1 of the document, at the it end of point
6 1 it says that the Stolac municipality and Capljina, and the points that
7 you are putting to the witness now refers to those municipalities. In
8 points 8, it says that the commission insisted on the Muslim side that
9 Dretelj be visited. We found no one there, so we went on to Ljubuski.
10 And after point 8. So what it says about Ljubuski is after point 8,
11 because you'll notice that in point 2 it says 42 civilians and 66 military
12 men, and in point 9 when they're talking about Ljubuski it says 89
13 civilians and 96 military men. So the commission toured a number of
14 prisons and in fact that is the report for all of this. It is not perhaps
15 precise enough, but I think at that understanding corresponds best to the
16 truth. Thank you.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] In a word, were your conditions
18 of detention, according to you, good or bad?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I think they were very bad.
20 MR. PORYVAEV:
21 Q. Yes, Witness. And the third person indicated in paragraph 12 is
22 Ibro Kukic. Did you know that person?
23 A. Yes, I did.
24 Q. Did you see him in Ljubuski?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Did you see his injuries?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. What kind -- kind of injuries did he have?
4 A. He had shrapnel injuries.
5 Q. Do you know how he had got that injuries -- injury?
6 A. That was when he was taken out to forced labour up at Drinovac or
7 the territory between Stolac and Popovo Polje. And he was injured by a
8 mortar grenade, mortar shell.
9 Q. Were the detainees taken to perform forced labour in that area on
10 a daily basis?
11 A. Well, I can say that he was taken out every day, and one of the
12 prisoners was taken out every day to perform forced labour.
13 Q. Were you also taken there to perform forced labour?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. What kind of forced labour did you perform there?
16 A. It was fortifying the front line by building some sort of
17 protection walls, dugouts, various forms, carrying sandbags up to where
18 the dugouts were being made, carrying wooden pillars that were dug into
19 the trenches and dugouts and then filled in with stones and sand and that
20 kind of thing.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Just an additional explanation.
22 You said you took part in the forced labour, in building trenches,
23 dugouts, and so on. When you were asked, were you a volunteer or did
24 nobody ask your opinion and just said that you were to go and do forced
25 labour and trench work? Did you have the opportunity of saying yes or
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] My only choice was if I hid behind
3 somebody else until they had taken as many men as they needed. That was
4 the only thing that I could do. So if I didn't want to go, and I didn't
5 want to go, I tried to hide behind someone in front of me. So if they
6 pointed a finger to anybody, that person had to go.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Right. Thank you. I'm going to
8 be very specific here. You were gathered together, as far as I was able
9 to understand you, and the person who came to get prisoners for external
10 work, did they say, "Any volunteers, raise your hands"? Or did the person
11 go around pointing a finger and saying, "You, you, and you"? How did this
12 happen? How did they go about this?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mostly they selected the people who
14 were stronger physically for the physical labour.
15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So there was nothing you could
16 say. You didn't have a voice.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
19 Mr. Poryvaev, you have 10 minutes, and we should round up by that
21 MR. PORYVAEV: I hope not the whole examination-in-chief.
22 Q. Witness, would I like you to turn to Exhibit P 02455.
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes. I said the
24 examination-in-chief. So you should finish the entire -- the
25 examination-in-chief by 7.00, and tomorrow it will be the turn of the
2 MR. PORYVAEV: I only used --
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Registrar, can we have the
4 calculations of time, please. How much time has been used?
5 Yes. You have 32 minutes, but you could proceed much faster.
6 MR. PORYVAEV:
7 Q. Have you seen this document?
8 A. [No interpretation].
9 Q. How did it come about that you indicated this person as an inmate
10 who should be taken, transferred to Ljubuski once you were detained in
11 Ljubuski? The document is dated on the 19th of May, 1993. Where were
13 A. On this date I was at the machine engineering faculty and not in
15 MS. TOMASEGOVIC TOMIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I do
16 apologise for interrupting, but the witness was asked whether he had seen
17 the document, and I think I heard him say yes, that he had seen it before,
18 but it wasn't in the transcript. But I would like to know how he saw the
19 document, where he saw the document, and linked to the identification of
20 the document it has neither a stamp nor a signature, and the letterhead is
21 different than is customary.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I did see it. I saw this document
23 yesterday during the preparation for the trial.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Poryvaev, you're asking him
25 about a document dated the 19th of May, 1993, and he says he wasn't in
1 Ljubuski. Is there any need to proceed with your questions about the
2 document in view of that?
3 MR. PORYVAEV: Yes, Your Honour. There is a sense -- some sense
4 of proceeding with this document, because I asked him where was he once he
5 was returned to Ljubuski from someplace, and he started answering this
6 question. He was at the mechanical faculty. And my first question was
7 how did it come about that he was taken to the mechanical faculty and what
8 happened to him at the mechanical faculty. That's -- it's not a futile
9 question, I think -- I don't think.
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Go ahead then. Ask him the
12 MR. PORYVAEV:
13 Q. You just told the Trial Chamber that you were at the mechanical
14 faculty. Who took you there, when?
15 A. On the 17th, we had this one bathing in Capljina that I mentioned.
16 After we returned from Capljina, there was lunch in Ljubuski. So we went
17 from Ljubuski to Capljina with buses taking us to the former JNA barracks.
18 We were able to wash there and go back to Ljubuski. After that we had
19 lunch, and after lunch somebody asked whether there was a driver among us.
20 I kept quiet, but one of the detainees said that I was a professional
21 driver. They told that -- they told Prlic that, and Prlic called me into
22 his office. Fejzo Plavsic and Ibro Junuzovic he took us into his office.
23 Q. First of all --
24 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
25 MR. PORYVAEV:
1 Q. Don't hurry. And then you just said some Prlic. Please give the
2 first name of that person.
3 A. Ante Prlic.
4 Q. Thank you. You may go on.
5 A. So Ante Prlic told us to go to his office, the three of us. He
6 talked to us and said that he needed three drivers for some job. He
7 didn't explain what those jobs were, and he said the people would be
8 waiting for us in front of the prison gates.
9 He escorted us to the gates. We got into a Volkswagen van, and in
10 the van were two policemen, two military policemen. One was doing the
11 driving, and the other was in the van with us, and he was our escort. He
12 escorted us with a weapon. He had his automatic rifle pointed at us so
13 that he was sure we would be quiet. And we set off from Ljubuski.
14 I didn't know where we were going straight away. Nobody told us
15 anything. And when we reached Citluk, it was clear to me -- or, at
16 Medjugorje -- I apologise for saying Citluk. It was Medjugorje. I got it
17 wrong. We reached Medjugorje, and it was clear what terrain we were on,
18 and we realised that we were moving towards Mostar. So we went
19 Medjugorje, Krusevo, and descended into Mostar. That's the route we
21 As we were going down to Mostar from Kuglovaca on the western side
22 of Mostar there was -- we halted for a few minutes were able to continue
23 on our way in a few minutes' time and went down to Mostar, and a facility
24 that I knew which used to be the commercial bank of Sarajevo, because a
25 long time ago I went there with my father who had a saving -- some savings
1 in that bank, and we passed the Partisan cemetery. We waited there
2 outside for some 10 minutes, and when we entered into Mostar, we that
3 there was heavy fighting going on and a lot of shooting.
4 So after 10 minutes we entered this building of the commercial
5 bank, the commercial bank building, and when I went inside I saw the face
6 of this man Ivan who interrogated me in Sovici and who, when he saw us at
7 first glance, welcomed us nicely, offered us some cigarettes, and told us
8 to sit down. And then some explanation followed. He said he needed one
9 driver, not three drivers, but he said he called all of us three for him
10 to choose the best. So he told three of us to come so that he could
11 choose the best for the job he had in mind. Now, what that job was we
12 didn't know. And then he went on to explain what the job was.
13 Q. Witness, since we have too little time left, I just would like to
14 speed up the procedure now and just start -- recount your story from the
15 moment you were taken to the MUP station, to the mechanical faculty.
16 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] I do apologise for interrupting,
17 Your Honours. I intervene on very rare occasions, but I don't understand
18 anything any more. If this statement was tendered according to 92 ter,
19 the witness is going through it all again, and the Prosecutor is asking
20 him questions on certain portions of that statement. I really don't want
21 to interrupt the Prosecutor and that should not be done, but this is
22 word-for-word recounting what we already have in the statement.
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] That is exactly the observation
24 that I was making.
25 So what is the object of that, Mr. Poryvaev? If it's all in the
1 written statement, why go into it again?
2 MR. PORYVAEV: I just want to show the witness some exhibits now
3 once he came -- we came to the mechanical faculty.
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] And which exhibit did you wish
5 to show him?
6 MR. PORYVAEV: Yes. Exhibit P 09791.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes.
8 MR. PORYVAEV:
9 Q. Witness, did you find this exhibit?
10 A. 09791, yes. I have it here.
11 Q. Witness, do you recognise the building that is depicted on this
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. What is that?
15 A. It's the machine engineering faculty where I was detained on that
16 day, the 17th. On the 17th of May.
17 Q. Shortly, what happened to you at the mechanical faculty?
18 A. Well, what happened there was that I experienced the worst three
19 days -- or, rather, three days and two nights of my life. And I'm almost
20 50 years old now. Those were the worst three days in the 10 and a half
21 months of the time I spent in detention.
22 Q. What happened to you?
23 A. I was beaten up. I was beaten so badly I couldn't move. My ribs
24 were broken and everything else.
25 Q. Who beat you?
1 A. The military police and anybody else who had the chance to get
2 a go. It was not only once, several times a day and several times a
4 Q. In what part of the building were you beaten up?
5 A. In the basement.
6 Q. Before this, I would like the witness just to put with a pointer,
7 make a mark on the Exhibit 09791. Put number 1 at the entrance of the
9 A. Number 1. Shall I write it down? I don't quite understand what
10 I'm supposed to do.
11 Q. Yes, mark the second one. Mark the second one, put number 1 just
12 to identify the building.
13 A. On the screen you mean.
14 Q. You may do that. Yes, yes.
15 A. You mean on the screen.
16 Q. And put your initials.
17 JUDGE TRECHSEL: I'm sorry. Mr. Poryvaev, I'm sorry. I do not
18 understand this. We have this document in our file. It is shown to the
19 witness. He recognises. That is in the transcript. What else do we
21 MR. PORYVAEV: Yes. Would I like this document to be captured and
22 given --
23 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Well, just introduce it as a piece of evidence.
24 Other piece are not signed by the witness. He doesn't sign all the other
25 documents. Why should he sign this picture?
1 MR. PORYVAEV: Because it's a photo.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Registrar, give us, please, an
3 IC number.
4 THE REGISTRAR: That will be Exhibit number IC 170, Your Honours.
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] It is 7.00 p.m. We will
6 continue tomorrow. How many more minutes do you immediate, Mr. Poryvaev,
7 to finish tomorrow, because you have already used, I think, more than 40
9 MR. PORYVAEV: I will use all the remaining time. If I have 20
10 minutes, I will use 20 minutes. If I have 21 minutes, I will use 21
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
13 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 7.02 p.m.,
14 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 13th day
15 of December, 2006, at 2.15 p.m.