1 Tuesday, 6 May 2008
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 2.21 p.m.
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Registrar, kindly call the
7 THE REGISTRAR: Good afternoon, Your Honours. Good afternoon to
8 everyone in and around the courtroom. This is case number IT-04-74-T,
9 the Prosecutor versus Prlic et al.
10 Thank you, Your Honours.
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Registrar.
12 Today is Tuesday, the 6th of May. My greetings to the
13 Prosecution, the Defence counsel, the accused, and everyone helping us.
14 Today, we are going to continue with Mr. Prlic's opening
15 statement. He has the floor.
16 THE ACCUSED PRLIC: Thank you, Mr. President.
17 [Interpretation] In light of the allegations in the indictment
18 related to inter alia the functioning of the prisons, let me say that
19 apart from the district prison in Mostar, as indicated in the report
20 issued by the Department for Judiciary and General Administration,
21 page 57, and now I quote:
22 "So far district, military, and civilian prisons have been
23 established in Orasje, Busovaca and Gabela pursuant to appropriate
24 decisions. The decree on district military courts in the territory of
25 HZ-HB during the time of imminent threat of war that was adopted on the
1 17th of October, 1992, by the Presidency of the HZ-HB, marks the setting
2 of the foundations -- legal foundations for the creation of district
3 prisons in the territory of HZ-HB.
4 In Chapter 6 of this decree, the enforcement of criminal
5 sanctions, the provisions contained in Articles 30 through 35, it is
6 stipulated, for instance in Article 31, and I quote:
7 "Convicted persons shall be sent to serve their prison sentences
8 by the district military courts to the nearest district prison or
9 penitentiary and correctional facility."
10 Since the Gabela prison was -- or, rather, the report of the
11 Department for Judiciary and Administration describes how the Gabela
12 Prison was turned into a detention centre, and I quote:
13 "Because of the war operations and for reasons that had to do
14 with other purposes of these facilities, they were anything but
15 institutions where persons remanded in custody and convicts can be
17 Through arbitrary acts and decisions of bodies that were not
18 competent to make such decisions, they were turned into detention centre
19 without any agreement or monitoring of the superior authorities. That
20 is, again, the same document that I quoted above, Prosecution
21 Exhibit P09551, the work report.
22 At the session of July 19th, 1993
23 Exhibit P03560, put on the agenda the demand to relocate the persons
24 remanded in custody and isolated persons. That is done at the
25 intervention of the Capljina HVO, and this is listed under miscellaneous,
1 item 7, which means that this was not an item on the agenda that had been
2 prepared in advance. A group was set up, as indicated in the conclusion
3 from this session, in order to improve the conditions of their
4 accommodation and to resolve the situation, the newly-emerged situation.
5 In other words, it was necessary to see what was going on.
6 The first conclusion from this session of the HVO HZ HB, already
7 presented to this Chamber, calls for consistent compliance with the
8 Geneva Conventions, quoting obligations from the decree on the treatment
9 of persons taken prisoner in combat or in armed conflict, which was
10 passed one year before by the HZ-HB Presidency. The real willingness to
11 do so by the provisional body of the executive government is reflected in
12 this conclusion, which reads as follows: I quote:
13 "Access shall be granted to the International Red Cross and other
14 international organisations in order to control the conditions for their
15 accommodation in the facilities where detained persons are located."
16 This position reflects the actual state of mind of the
17 provisional body of the executive government because this is an internal
18 document, the minutes from a meeting, not a propaganda-type document
19 meant for the public at large.
20 At that time, in the second half of July 1993, I wrote a public
21 letter to Mate Granic, the deputy prime minister of the Republic of
23 document 1D 01870. This letter had to do primarily with the implementation
24 of the Makarska Agreement. In this letter, the provisional body of the
25 executive government for the first time makes it public and faces this
1 problem, expressing its readiness to assist in resolving this problem
2 that really did exist, although the provisional body of the executive
3 government, as indicated by all the documents and all the minutes, did
4 not have either de jure or de facto powers over those centres, and that
5 goes also for the conduct of the people there.
6 In this press release, an effort is made to establish some
7 principles that were defined by the provisional organ or provisional body
8 as the, I quote, "unconditional exchange on the all-for-all principle."
9 As I've already pointed out, the HVO HZ-HB took the position
10 that, I quote:
11 "It should be possible to allow access to interested humanitarian
12 organisations to all the facilities where isolated persons who are placed
13 in isolation are housed," which shows that they were obviously willing to
14 resolve this problem as soon as possible and not to hide anything.
15 This press release clearly shows that a call for some actions is
16 made, and through the involvement of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of
18 conditions to really solve this problem. At the same time, these
19 conclusions show that the provisional body of executive government does
20 not manage or run those facilities, and there are no documents where it
21 is possible to find any indication that any decisions could be made,
22 least of all decisions that had to do with the detention issues.
23 We did not have the right to make such operational decisions, and
24 there are no such decisions in the documents at our disposal. The only
25 thing that could be done was to call -- that's the document that I've
1 already referenced, that P 03673, and I quote:
2 "HVO HZ-HB calls on all the bodies to consistently comply with
3 international conventions, both in their treatment of civilians and of
4 prisoners of war."
5 The tone of the press release and the call to set up yet another
6 meeting with the representatives of the government in Sarajevo
7 context of the Makarska Agreement that had been signed some ten days
8 earlier testifies to our efforts to take every measure at our disposal,
9 the comprehensive measures that envisaged all forms of fighting, all
10 forms of crime that were already mentioned in the minutes from the
11 meeting of the 11th and the 18th of August. That's documents P 04111 and
12 1D 01675, include the following, and I quote:
13 "The Defence and Interior Affairs Departments should see whether
14 it is necessary to establish a mixed unit that would contain personnel
15 from military and civilian police in the town of Mostar in order to
16 provide efficient protection to the citizens against various groups and
17 individuals. And it is in particular necessary to link up and to place
18 under full control various groups that are outside of full command
20 At the second meeting on the 18th of August, conclusions are made
21 related to the service of sentences for persons who have already been
22 convicted and whose convictions were final, and who could only be placed
23 in the prisons which were part of the judicial system.
24 In document P 4756, quotes were made from the meeting of the
25 collegium of the Defence Department before this Trial Chamber which
1 clearly show that there is no system because it is quite obvious that
2 nobody knows who was in charge of most of those centres, and
3 this is the information that was at the disposal of the HVO HZ-HB because
4 Bruno Stojic stressed that quite clearly on several occasions at our
5 meetings. The Defence Department was not in charge, but as documents
6 indicate, regardless of this fact, it did take a number of measures to
7 improve the situation.
8 The positions taken at the working meeting of the government of
9 the Croatian Republic
10 show the commitment to take measures, although it is quite clearly stated
11 in the minutes, and this was our position at the time, unanimous
12 position, that the provisional body of executive government is not
13 responsible for this situation in any way.
14 Defence witnesses will talk about the joint declaration by the
15 president of the Republic of Croatia
16 of the BiH Presidency, Alija Izetbegovic, signed in Geneva on the 14th of
17 September, 1993. That's Exhibit P 5051, appointing their special plenary
18 potentiaries for the implementation of those measures, the Foreign
19 Minister Mate Granic and Foreign Minister Haris Silajdzic. Together with
20 the working groups that had been established, they took a number of
21 measures to close down the detention centres and to improve the overall
22 humanitarian situation.
23 I spoke about the necessity of implementing those demands in a
24 lengthy TV programme aired on the 21st of September, 1993, calling on all
25 the bodies to prevent all the conduct that is contrary to Geneva
1 Conventions. That's document 1D 2230.
2 At one of the meetings that I attended, and that was attended by
3 both envoys, Granic and Silajdzic, I demanded that all the conditions on
4 the declaration be met, that all the detention centres be dissolved,
5 threatening, as recorded in the minutes, that I would otherwise be
6 abandoning everything, my position in the government, and that I would be
7 tendering my resignation from all the positions I was holding at the
8 time. The provisional organ of executive government, or the Government
10 Finally, as the Chamber knows, Mate Boban adopted the decision on the
11 10th of December, 1993, on the unilateral and unconditional dismantling
12 of all detention centres, which eventually led to their closure.
13 I'm trying to keep my presentation as short as possible, but I
14 hope the Chamber will allow me to say a couple of words on the
15 establishment of the Croatian Republic of Herceg-Bosna. It was
16 established in keeping with the constitutional agreement on the
17 establishment of the union of the republics of Bosnia-Herzegovina, which
18 in itself was envisaged in the international peace package.
1 Another thing that I wish to point out is that the relations that
3 is what it was prior to this, had not been successful in guaranteeing a
4 more effective functioning in terms of the work of the municipalities and
5 the coordination between municipalities, which was one reason why the
6 breakdown of various responsibilities was never that clear.
7 Early in 1994, we took charge of financing the entire military
8 system, the police, and the health system. Early in 1994, the first
9 pensions were eventually paid to the citizens of Herceg-Bosna, not just
10 to all of its citizens under the control of the HVO. I'm referring to
11 HVO-controlled territory, of course. Rather, there were various forms of
12 compensation, a total of 130.000 from the budget that were paid to Croats
13 in other territories, as well, which is something that the Prosecutor
14 quotes, as well, bases on one of my discussions in the presidential
15 transcripts. This is 27048. That is the transcript reference for this
16 trial. I am quoted as saying that each and every one of the Croats were
17 eventually paid. This was said in a bit to illustrate the difficulty
18 that we were facing in sustaining our budget.
19 Now that I've made a reference to the presidential transcripts, I
20 want to add something about the 5th December meeting in Split where the
21 serious situation that we were facing was discussed.
22 I turned down a proposal by Mate Boban [Realtime translation read
23 in error, "Granic"] on how the government was to be put together, and I
24 added as follows:
25 "I mean, I can't be made to answer for this situation. Why am I
1 being called to account? I am responsible as a member of the Government,
2 but I'm not answering for anything in particular. It is be the minister
3 who should be answerable to the parliament."
4 MR. KARNAVAS: The transcript should say "Mate Boban," not "Mate
5 Granic," if we were listening correctly. It's line 21 on page 8.
6 THE ACCUSED PRLIC: Exactly, it was Mate Boban.
7 [Interpretation] This is P 6454, and that's where you can find
8 the relevant quote.
9 After that, I was involved in proposing a setup for the new
10 government. Although it was a mixed composition in terms of personnel,
11 it was capable of carrying out its work in an effective manner.
12 In order to illustrate the objectives of the HR-HB, in my opening
13 speech as the prime-minister of the HR-HB government, at the meeting of
14 the House of Representatives on 20th November 1993, when we were elected,
15 talking for the first time about the programme for 1994, I pointed out
16 the following. I quote:
17 "The fundamental objective of the HR-HB government is to stop the
18 war and stop the ongoing clashes, as well as to create a republic for the
19 Croatian people in which all the other peoples of the BH, the Muslims and
20 the Serbs, and all ethnic minorities will enjoy all human and ethnic
21 rights, in keeping with European standards."
22 At the same time, we are under an obligation to make sure that
23 all Croats in all other areas throughout B and H will be able to enjoy
24 the same rights.
25 If I may make a suggestion to the Chamber, to look at my
14 Your Honours, I am now moving on to my second-to-last subject.
15 This is my interview with the OTP. Although to some extent I've been
16 referring to elements of this interview - this is P 9078 - please allow
17 me to shed more light on some of these statements that I made.
18 My interview with the OTP took place in 2001, when the alliance
19 for a change was set up in Bosnia-Herzegovina, which then formed the
20 government, and then for the first time the HDZ was no longer represented
21 in any of the levels of power above county level.
22 Back in 2000, I had left the HDZ, which drew a lot of attention
23 from the media. There were also a number of newspaper articles which had
24 been specially commissioned, of course, to expose and denounce me as a
25 person and to pin on me the responsibility for everything that had been
1 going on during the war, including alleged war crimes. That,
2 however, was not sufficient, so elements of white collar and other kinds
3 of crime were also fabricated, and this kept the newspapers busy for some
4 time, or at least some of them. Of course, I know or can guess who was
5 behind this campaign to discredit me.
6 In addition to all of this, I was labelled as a traitor of the
7 Croatian people. All these attacks were aimed at my person, despite my
8 more or less natural sangfroid, I understood that this was part of the
9 process that all new democracies had to face.
10 Despite all of this, as I say, this gave rise to a certain amount
11 of bitterness, which I then vented in my interview with the OTP.
12 It is true that the OTP served on me a series of questions that
13 they said they would be interested in. There were a total of 24 subjects
14 included. I drafted a special written analysis in relation to each and
15 every one of those areas, and I was prepared to answer all of the
16 questions. However, I succeeded only to a limited extent.
17 I can offer you my views as to why that was the case. First of
18 all, I'd received at a later date a tape-recording of the OTP's interview
19 with Mr. Kresimir Zubak who at the time was the vice president of the
20 provisional organ of executive government. I was then given a chance
21 to cross-reference these and compare his interview to my own. The
22 interview with Mr. Zubak unfolded over five days, and my interview only
23 took two days. It was obvious to me that Mr. Zubak was given sufficient
24 time to address all the same issues that I spoke about, except
25 he was given more time so he could provide more precise and more
1 detailed elucidations.
2 The other thing that I noticed at the time was that the chemistry
3 or the overall atmosphere in those two interviews were entirely
4 different. During my interview, especially if you listened to the actual
5 tape-recording rather than to just read the transcript, there was a
6 certain amount of tension that was in the air, and that was clearly
7 noticeable. I believe that there were several reasons behind this sort
8 of atmosphere. Above all, as you can tell by inspecting the English
9 version, I had to make several corrections to the work of the
10 interpreter, who was using erroneous terminology in relation to a number
11 of truly crucial matters. I wasn't able to catch all the mistakes and
12 all of the omissions, simply because I was trying to focus on the
13 questions and to answer them in the appropriate context. That was the
15 For example, page 18, there is something missing in the
16 translation. Yugoslav dinars were coming from Croatia following the
17 introduction of the Croatian currency. The wording used by the
18 Prosecutor is missing the adjective "Yugoslav," which lends the entire
19 context a whole new meaning.
20 I believe the other reason to have been the following: The OTP,
21 people come from an entirely different legal background. I think, then
22 as now, it might have been difficult for them to understand the
23 differences between the two systems. I did my best to explain our legal
24 system and my position within that system, the system that applied at the
25 time throughout Bosnia and Herzegovina. As you can see, this led to
1 misunderstanding, and this sidetracked the entire interview. I observed
2 the negative reactions of my interviewers; for example, when I said I
3 simply didn't have the power that my position seems to entitle me to.
4 My impression at the time was that instead of having a
5 conversation, instead of providing explanations, I was merely expected to
6 provide yes-or-no answers to any of their questions.
7 Having heard Mr. Tomjanovic's arguments, and he was one of the
8 persons who spoke to me at the time, who conducted an analysis that the
9 Chamber is aware of, which shows that in actual fact I was never offered
10 a chance, during that interview, to offer not an alternative
11 interpretation but, rather, an authentic interpretation of the laws. I
12 decided to draft a written answer to his own analysis. I have been
13 preparing this reply for quite some time.
14 Since we opted for this opening statement or introduction only as
15 late as ten days ago, which by the way turned my entire provisional
16 release to spending endless hours before my PC, working on my
17 presentation, and I thank the Chamber for granting my provisional
18 release, I have simply not had sufficient time to draw up this reply.
19 However, as an addendum to my presentation, I will be submitting
20 to the Chamber the full and final version of my reply to Tomjanovic's
21 paper. This I will do in a bit to furnish the Chamber with complete and
22 thorough information, thereby enabling the Chamber to make better
23 informed conclusions.
24 When I read the interview now, it is quite clear that the answers
25 in the interview are in some ways incomplete or not sufficiently clear.
1 Some of them demand further clarification. Besides, I have since
2 received a lot of documents that I had not inspected before. Therefore,
3 some of my assessments would now be somewhat different. Above all, I'm
4 referring to the 27th of December, 1991, conversation. This is P 89.
5 I first set eyes on it when it was published in
6 Professor Ribicic's book. He testified as an expert witness before this
7 Tribunal and also brought along the transcript itself. I read the
8 transcript for the first time. It is full of hypothetical statements and
17 That is why I stated in the interview that there was another
18 political possibility that was being held in reserve, just in case.
22 Outside of the sessions, outside of the conclusions reached at
23 those sessions, I did not have any discretionary powers to take any
24 independent decisions about anything. That was the position in all the
25 executive bodies in our system. That is why I said, at page 36, that in
1 essence I was not the president of the HVO. I explained that yesterday,
2 in part, by describing the evolution of this body from the spring to the
3 summer of 1992, and in particular through the amendments of the relevant
4 documents such as, for instance, the Decree on the Armed Forces from
5 October 1992. That is why I used the abbreviation "PIO." This means the
6 Provisional Executive Body, both in the interview and in my presentation
7 here in court.
8 To cut the long story short, there were three HVOs; the military,
9 that was again the term used for the executive bodies in the
10 municipalities, and the same term again was used for the provisional
12 from the anti-fascist struggle. That was when the boards for national
13 liberation were set up, and that was the term that was used for all the
14 bodies at all the levels.
15 I have already explained that the powers of the HVO HZ-HB were
16 reduced after the amendments were passed on the 14th of August, 1992
17 which was the time when Mate Boban ceased to be the head of this body.
18 This explains my views at page 47 of the interview where I say that I
19 really did not have any function, because I could not make any decisions
20 either formally, or actually, without going to the collective organ.
21 My resentments [Realtime transcript read in error "reassessment"]
22 at the events that were going on around me at the time of the
23 interview were expressed, among other things, when I said that
24 I had been used by some people, at the time when I was needed to
25 help set up a functioning economic system. This is what I said at
1 page 49, and this is what I said in the letter that I wrote when I left
2 the HDZ ranks, saying that I had never actually been with those people.
3 MR. KARNAVAS: One correction, because it's rather point at this
4 point in time, Your Honours.
5 Where it says "my resentment," and that would be, I believe, on
6 line 20, page 18, it's "my bitterness." Page 16, I'm sorry. Page 16,
7 not 20, it's "my bitterness," not "resentment." Or not "reassessment,"
8 but "my bitterness."
9 THE ACCUSED PRLIC: [Interpretation] Our views were different,
10 but that is business as usual in other parties. But given the
11 circumstances and the fact that emotions ran high, this is a
13 including myself, may have said some things we shouldn't have said. Some
14 people were against me. I mentioned some of them, because I believe that
16 The part of the interview at page 55 looks quite confusing,
17 partly because the consecutive interpretation failed to render everything
18 that was actually said. This is where I say something that I've already
19 mentioned; that no information from the security services ever reached
20 me, which is quite obvious from the documents that have been admitted
21 into evidence in this case, because all those reports contained the list
22 of addressees.
23 The debates that we had at the sessions, they are mentioned in
24 the minutes, including the intervention by Bruno Stojic about the current
1 Yesterday, I briefly spoke about the decisions on the internal
2 organisation of the Defence Department, which quite clearly and
3 explicitly stipulate that the military and the civilian segments should
4 be separate. The Defence Department, let me stress once again, primarily
5 had a civilian function, and that is how it acted at the sessions of the
6 provisional organ of executive government, which I say when I stress that
7 the military part of the defence was separate and was operating
8 independently from the provisional organ of the executive government.
9 The provisional organ of executive government, in this case as in
10 other cases, merely appointed the assistance to the heads at the
11 recommendation of the head, himself. This is a technical issue. The
18 When I spoke about what Bruno Stojic had said at those meetings,
19 I would like to say that those were not military reports. I stress that
20 at page 94. For the most part, they had to do with problems related to
21 the non-functioning of the system, particularly as it related to
22 mobilisation or funding. We did not have any military information.
23 This had indeed not been envisaged anywhere. The people in the military
24 were under no obligation to do that. They had their commander-in-chief,
25 so that I did not have any right to make any complaints to the
1 commander-in-chief in this regard, as indicated at page 96 of the
3 I did know Petkovic and Praljak, but I was under no obligation to
4 provide any official information to them, and they, in turn, were under
5 no obligation to provide any official information to me. Our contacts
6 were sporadic and quite accidental, except at two or three meetings that
7 were attended by the members of the provisional executive body.
8 As for Valentin Coric, I met with him even more seldom.
9 Of course, that was up until the establishment of the government of
10 the Croatian republic of Herceg-Bosna
11 As far as I can recall, we're talking about one or two meetings of the
12 coordination of the body for fighting crime, which was set up pursuant to
13 the action plan for the fight against crime that was put together as the
14 sessions of the 11th and the 18th of August, 1993. I've already made
15 references to that.
16 In accordance with the topics for the discussion that I had
17 received from the Prosecution, I tried to present the basics of the
18 judiciary in this interview, and I was only partially successful in this
19 effort. But the Trial Chamber has at its disposal all the relevant
20 decrees, you're all lawyers, and you can see the relationship between the
21 prosecutor's offices, prisons, courts, that are the same as in all other
22 countries with the civil law system.
23 At page 88 of the interview, there is some discussion about the
24 Gabela Prison. Pursuant to -- this prison was set up pursuant to
25 Article 145, paragraph 2, of the Law on the Enforcement of Criminal and
1 Misdemeanour Sanctions of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and
2 according to the reports of the judiciary department, it was part of the
3 network that comprised four district, military and civilian prisons in
4 Herceg-Bosna, prisons that were quite logically linked to the relevant
5 courts, courts that had jurisdiction in those areas.
6 But as I've already noted, the same reports state that in the
7 second half of 1993, neither the courts nor the judiciary department had
8 any access to some of the places that were used to detain prisoners.
9 Moreover, some facilities that were set up as prisons were turned into
10 detention centres without any decisions having been passed by the
11 relevant higher organs.
12 Enough documents have already been admitted into evidence and are
13 at the disposal of Your Honours about how this facility functioned, who
14 the reports went to, and who -- whom it was responsible to.
15 I've already mentioned at page 87 that barracks were used to
16 house detainees. They are mentioned even earlier in 1992 as facilities
17 where detainees were kept. This was -- this is obvious from the
18 agreements that were signed in Geneva
19 where mention is made of the prison in Dretelj. I was able to learn that
20 in that year, it was actually run by HOS, and the Capljina prison.
21 Finally, let me say that in several places in my interview, for
22 instance, at page 82, I spoke about the perpetrators of the crimes that
23 occur in every war. I said that they were committed mostly by people
24 wearing uniforms, by soldiers, members of the military units, military
25 conscripts, and that these people should be punished, regardless of who
1 they are. And I'm absolutely sure that none of the accused here is
2 opposed to that. Quite the contrary.
3 Let me make a brief summary at the end, Your Honours, in light of
4 my alleged contribution to the alleged joint criminal enterprise,
12 Enough has been said about the decisions that were issued in
13 accordance with the Rules of Procedure. Your Honours, there is not a
14 single decision passed in accordance with the Rules Of Procedure that
15 would be discriminatory and that would allow the alleged objectives of
16 the joint criminal enterprise to be implemented.
17 B. The goals of the policies were established in the platforms
18 of the HDZ of BH and peace plans, in no uncertain terms. None of those
19 documents contain any indications about the alleged goals of the joint
20 criminal enterprise. At that time, I was not a member of the HDZ.
21 C. My role in the provisional organ of executive government,
22 as a collective organ, has shown -- was shown to be such that any alleged
23 influence over the work of the departments, including the three
24 departments singled out by the Prosecutor, is patently unfounded.
25 D. I stand behind all the -- or stand by all the decisions of
1 the collective body that I signed. None of those decisions could be
2 taken to support the alleged goals of the joint criminal enterprise,
3 including the ones that were singled out in particular by the
4 Prosecution. Let me address two of them now.
5 The decree on the use of abandoned housing, P 3809, was meant to
6 coordinate the work of various municipalities, because they had already
7 passed such decisions. It made it possible to allocate housing
8 apartments on a temporary basis, up to one year, but any apartments that
9 had been abandoned under duress could not be disposed of. HVO HZB did
10 not allocate any apartments, any such apartments to anybody.
11 On the other hand, the Sarajevo
12 allocate apartments on a permanent basis, which was one of the greatest
13 problems in the implementation of the Dayton Peace Agreement. As members
14 of the council of ministers of Bosnia-Herzegovina with the support of the
15 International Community, we decided that everybody had the right to go
16 back to their own apartment, even though those apartments were actually
17 socially owned, which, for instance, is not the case in the Republic of
19 The decree on border crossings at state borders simply applied a
20 previous federal regulation that had already been adopted by B and H,
21 defining the state border with the Republic of Croatia
22 indictment claims that the aim was to have Herceg-Bosna annexed by the
23 Republic of Croatia
24 Item E. The decision we took was exactly the opposite from
25 trying to monitor all the municipalities. We took a decision to have
6 to them and submitted reports to them.
7 The Prosecutor refers to a decision taken by Mostar Municipality
8 on refugees. I had never previously heard of this before I was
15 made the relevant proposals. The decisions, for the most part, were
16 signed by the president of the HZ-HB. It was in no more than a handful
17 of cases that the decisions were signed by the HVO HZ-HB.
18 For example, as the Prosecutor points out, Ljubuski is a case in
21 F. The Prosecutor allegations that there was such a thing as
22 Croatisation [as interpreted], which is a term that occurs in none of the
23 world's dictionaries, Your Honours. It is simply a word that does not
24 exist. They back this by showing decrees in relation to the
25 establishment of the university and institutions of primary/secondary
4 Defence evidence will demonstrate that these decrees were adopted
5 because of the need to bring life back to normal in areas in which the
6 republican bodies had ceased to function after the war had escalated, and
7 these decrees never discriminated against anyone.
19 Herceg-Bosna in its defence at all, all the more so bearing in mind the
20 vested interests of Croatia
21 its own territory from the same aggressor. Instances of assistance to
22 the Muslim people in government in Sarajevo by Croatia, they have been
23 documented throughout this trial and will continue to be documented, both
24 as it concerned putting up refugees, treatment in Croatian hospitals,
25 education, organising and delivering humanitarian aid, supplying weapons,
1 and training entire units of the BH Army.
2 H. The non-existence of a provisional executive body in military
3 matters, this is something that has been inspected quite closely.
4 Preparations for defence plans were, as I pointed out before, only about
5 the civilian aspect of defence in schools, banks, kindergartens, and
6 other such institutions. This is illustrated by 1D 2722, 1D 2723,
7 1D 2724, and 1D 2811.
8 I. As a member of the provisional executive body, I was in no
9 position to appoint or, indeed, replace or dismiss anyone on my own.
10 Mine was a single vote, and the same applied to everyone else. Normally,
11 this vote, was used to back proposals that were made, proposals that had
12 already been endorsed by the one of the winning parties or a candidate's
14 J. The decision on military production was a decision that had
15 to do with the economy primarily - it was in relation to both ABiH and
16 HVO - while the decree of the Republic of B
17 production only for one of the components of the armed forces, the
18 BH Army.
19 K. The cooperation with Croatia
20 purportedly seen as a crime. An example cited is the adoption of the
21 decision on the import of goods from Croatia. I explained yesterday that
22 this was a reciprocal measure because goods from the BiH were handled the
23 same way when being imported to Croatia
25 with no restrictions. In the present case, however, the Prosecutor seems
1 to believe that a measure like that constituted a war crime.
2 L. The decision taken on the 15th of January, 1993, did not in
3 any way affect the commencement of clashes. It was adopted and withdrawn
4 pursuant to orders and information supplied by the head of the Croatian
5 negotiating team, the president of the HDZ and HZ HB, Mate Boban
6 This was done in good faith and with a view to setting up a
7 joint command. Dozens of agreements had been signed to that effect.
8 Another objective was to avoid clashes between the two parties, and now
9 I'm giving you a definition of the entire conflict under consideration
10 here. It is a conflict that can be considered an internal conflict
15 The period that followed the 15th of January is the only period
16 in which the HVO HZ-HB emerged as one of the addressees when information
17 was submitted on the situation that was unfolding in Gornji Vakuf, where
18 clashes had already erupted prior to the 15th of January, as we have all
20 M. In April 1993, again, there was no ultimatum whatsoever.
21 Both parties had already signed the Vance-Owen Plan by this time, and
22 we're talking about its implementation. Defence evidence will show that
23 clashes in parts of the territory had nothing whatsoever to do with the
24 HVO HZ-HB meeting that was held on the 3rd of April, a meeting devoted in
25 its entirety to documents related to the Vance-Owen Plan and preparations
1 for its exceptionally complex implementation, which in effect meant the
2 dissolution of Herzeg-Bosna.
8 prosecution offices, as well as courts, prisons, in which, under the law,
9 prisoners could only be kept pursuant to a decision from an appropriate
11 O. There is no evidence at all showing that the HVO HZ-HB was in
12 any way involved in anything to do with forced labour performed by
14 P. The provisional executive body did not take a single
15 decision, and you have all the minutes, you have all the copies of
16 the Official Gazette, that discriminated against the Muslim population,
17 or anyone else, for that matter.
18 Q. The Defence will lead evidence to get the Chamber a full
19 picture regarding the functioning of the Office for Refugees, which was
20 an institution with a humanitarian remit. They offered all possible
21 assistance to persons whose lives were at risk, especially refugees,
22 regardless of their ethnicity, and it was certainly not involved in any
23 deportations. There is nothing to corroborate the alleged activities by
24 the Commission for Population Migrations, something else that is
25 referenced by the Prosecutor in the Indictment.
1 R. It is malicious to suggest that this assistance in receiving
2 over 100.000 Croat refugees, because of military action by the BH Army;
3 for example, in Zenica, Travnik, Kakanj, Konic [phoen], Bugojno, Fojnica
4 or Vares, was aimed at getting the Croats to leave the areas in which
5 they were residing. This was not the case, and this is in fact
6 demonstrated by the fact that most of them left for Croatia, while very
7 few actually remained under relatively difficult conditions in
8 Herceg-Bosna, but certainly not in Mostar.
9 S. Reactions to attacks by the Muslim army against Croats, which
10 was something that led to tens of thousands of citizens being displaced,
11 cannot be considered as an attempt to spread fear, hatred, and
12 distrust. Croats were, in fact, expelled from territories historically
13 inhabited by Croats, and this is something that the Prosecutor places
14 under quotation marks, because their ancestors had been living in those
15 areas for at least a thousand years previously. Mostar was defined as
16 the capital of the province and then also the capital of the Croatian
17 Republic of Herceg-Bosna, as well as of the Herzegovinian Neretva County
18 in the Federation. Proposals were even made for Mostar to become the
19 capital of the entire Federation, and the Muslim negotiators agreed with
21 The 30th of June declaration, of which I spoke yesterday, is a
22 mere declaration. It is certainly not an order or a decision.
23 T. All the humanitarian convoys that ever travelled through
24 HZ-HB territory reached their destination. The protocol that
25 was defined in cooperation with international organisations helped to
1 work out a procedure for this. In addition to this, the Defence will be
2 showing that no request by international organisations to furnish
3 humanitarian aid was ever refused, regardless of its eventual
5 U. As has already been pointed out, the provisional executive
6 organ had no role to play in any of the military operations. Contrary to
7 allegations made by the OTP, it was a reconstruction of whatever had been
8 destroyed, including the cultural and historic heritage of all of the
9 ethnic groups, was one of its primary commitments. I am quoting the
10 following documents: 1D 02703, 1D 02706.
19 Your Honours, so much for my contribution to what I believe is
20 the non-existence -- nonexistent joint criminal enterprise. Let me repeat
21 once again. I sympathise with all the war victims. These are people who
22 lived side by side with me in the same city, people with whom I lived all my
23 life, or with their families. I can say that with the provisional body of
24 executive government and later on with the government, I did all I could,
25 and believe me, really everything I could under those circumstances,
6 The developments have shown that we were unable to resolve the
7 problems with the Muslim politicians, but we made every effort to ensure
8 that the Croatian Bosnian Federation actually started functioning after
9 that. I initialed the Dayton Peace Agreement, and after that, for more
10 than five years, I represented Bosnia and Herzegovina as the foreign
11 minister. I represented all its citizens.
12 If you look at my career, you will see that apart from just a few
13 years, I spent all my time in Sarajevo
14 welcomed by all, and this is where I lived at the time when the
15 indictment was served.
16 Thank you very much for your attention.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
18 We are about to take a 20-minute break, and after the break we
19 will hear the first witness as scheduled so that we can start with the
21 We will resume in 20 minutes; that is, at 4.00 sharp. Thank you.
22 --- Recess taken at 3.47 p.m.
23 --- On resuming at 4.07 p.m.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The hearing is resumed.
25 I believe Mr. Scott wanted to say something.
1 MR. SCOTT: Yes, Your Honour, thank you.
2 Mr. President, Your Honours, good afternoon, and good afternoon
3 to all those in and around the courtroom.
4 Your Honour, I wanted to raise two important matters before we
5 continue further. Out of deference to Mr. Prlic, I did not want to
6 either delay or interrupt his statement, but there were two matters
7 I think should be addressed before we continue.
8 First of all, Your Honours, the Prosecution would move for the
9 unsealing and making public of Mr. Prlic's prior statement, which is
10 Exhibit P 09078, which this Trial Chamber, as you know, has previously
11 admitted into evidence. While the litigation concerning the admission of
12 that statement was ongoing, the statement had been placed under seal.
13 However, it appears that notwithstanding the Chamber's decision admitting
14 that statement now, that the statement has remained under seal and not
15 available to the public or anyone else, for that matter. And,
16 Your Honour, the Prosecution does not see any reason at this point why
17 that particular piece of evidence, unlike the other voluminous evidence
18 in this case today should be secret or under seal, especially --
19 especially in light of the fact that in the last two days, yesterday and
20 today, Mr. Prlic himself has, on numerous occasions, referred both to the
21 existence of the statement and the content of the statement, and in fact
22 has, well, tried to correct or change some of the statements that he made
23 in that statement. I think it's only fair that that statement be a
24 matter of open evidence that anyone can review at this time.
25 So, Your Honour, the Prosecution moves that Exhibit P 09078, the
1 previous statement -- written statement or testimony, a transcript,
2 actually, of Mr. Prlic be unsealed and made a public exhibit, number 1.
3 Number 2, Your Honour, the Prosecution must raise its concerns
4 and objections to the practice so far, only at this early moment in the
5 Defence cases, in connection with the information provided so far
6 concerning Defence witnesses and statements; that is, their evidence.
7 And before Mr. Karnavas gets too excited about that, let me assure him
8 that I intend to make a measured statement and to acknowledge, in fact,
9 some steps that Mr. Karnavas has taken.
10 But, Your Honours, since we are now starting the Defence cases,
11 and as everyone in the courtroom knows, we will be engaged in this
12 process now for some months. It seems to the Prosecution entirely
13 appropriate to raise this at the outset so that we can hopefully, if you
14 will, get off on the right foot. And of course we would expect this to
15 apply to all the Defence cases and not just the Prlic Defence, but the
16 six Defence teams. Indeed, it may be that some of the other Defence
17 teams already intend or contemplate a different practice, and I cannot
18 speak to that except to say that, of course, we're starting with the
19 Prlic Defence case, so that is the case that I must direct at least my
20 immediate comments to.
21 Now, Your Honour, with respect, the Zuzul statement, and if the
22 Chamber has it, and I hope that the Chamber might -- at least one of the
23 Judges might have it at hand. If the Chamber looks at the Zuzul witness
24 statement that was filed as part of the Rule 65 ter G Defence filings,
25 the Prosecution respectfully submits that the summary is deficient and is
1 not what Rule 65 ter(G)(i)(b) requires. What the Prosecution submits
2 must be summarised is not simply the background information on the
3 witness, that is, what positions he or she have held in the past, and
4 must be more than simply even a listing of the topics or subjects on
5 which the witness will testify. What the Rule requires, in our
6 submission, is an actual statement of the substantial -- not every word
7 and of course not a verbatim statement, but a substantial and detailed
8 summary of what the witness's actual evidence will be, not what he --
9 where he was during the war, not what his positions were during the war,
10 but what his or her evidence will actually be. And if I can remind the
11 Chamber -- excuse me. If I can refer the Chamber to the Rule itself, and
12 I'm quoting now Rule 65 ter (G)(i)(b), it requires, "a summary of the
13 facts," and I underline the word "facts," "a summary of the facts on
14 which each witness will testify."
15 And I invite the Chamber again, if you will turn your attention,
16 please, to the summary for Mr. Zuzul, which is the first witness listed
17 in the Prlic 65 ter (G) witness list. The first paragraph and the first
18 sentence of the second paragraph is entirely information -- which we
19 appreciate but is readily available from any number of sources, is
20 entirely information about various positions he has held. He was deputy
21 foreign minister at one point. He was at the United Nations at one
22 point, et cetera, et cetera.
23 Then the last full one-third of the summary is simply a statement
24 that says, in practical effect:
25 "Having sat through meetings that were recorded and referred to
1 in the presidential transcripts, Mr. Zuzul's testimony will touch upon a
2 significant portion of the alleged JCE." "Will touch upon the JCE."
3 And then the rest of the summary essentially is a paraphrase of
4 paragraph 15 of the Prosecutor's indictment, which with all respect we
5 don't necessarily need to be reminded of, but we appreciate it. But,
6 Your Honour, if you look is the summary in substance, not the number of
7 lines, not the number of words on the page, but if Your Honours,
8 President Antonetti, Judge Trechsel, Judge Prandler, if you will look at
9 the actual words on the page and what's said here, there's almost no
10 information provided to the Prosecution --
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] And you forgot Judge Mindua.
12 MR. SCOTT: My apologies, Judge. My apologies to that, as well
13 as to you, Judge. If you will look at the summary, and again, my
14 apologies. You will find that -- you will find almost no information,
15 almost no information by which the Prosecution can reasonably prepare to
16 meet the evidence of this witness. We'll talk about the JCE. We'll talk
17 about the JCE. That's about 99 per cent of what it says.
18 Now, beyond that, Your Honour, what compounds the problem in this
19 situation, what compounds the problem, unlike the Prosecution witnesses,
20 we've not received any statement of this witness, no statement of the
21 witness whatsoever, and I don't know if the Chamber has. I assume the
22 Chamber hasn't, or if it was, I would assume the Prosecution would be
23 provided a copy of the same.
24 I see the Chamber shaking its head in a negative response, saying
25 they have not. If that's the case, Your Honour, then both the Trial
1 Chamber and the Prosecution are working at a substantial disadvantage in
2 being able to prepare to receive this witness's testimony, and that
3 simply puts everyone in the courtroom at a substantial disadvantage and
4 was not the practice followed by the Prosecution.
5 The Chamber will know that with the Prosecution witnesses, there
6 was at least always at least one detailed multi-page statement, sometimes
7 multiple statements, sometimes verbatim transcripts of prior testimony,
8 by which the evidence could be reviewed and a cross-examiner could
9 prepare his cross-examination accordingly. I might add that these are
10 not easy witnesses. This is not a criminal case where a witness comes in
11 and says, "I think I saw the suspect run out of the door. I think the
12 suspect was wearing a blue coat." In cross-examination, that witness can
13 be prepared, perhaps, perhaps reasonably easily. We're talking now about
14 cross-examination on a whole host of issues. The only information we
15 have is evidence touching on the JCE, evidence touching on the JCE.
16 Now we've been provided one, two, three, four, five, six, seven
17 binders of documents with no prior statement and no sufficient summary to
18 prepare -- to prepare to meet this evidence, and, Your Honour, that's
19 simply not efficient.
20 Now, I said I wanted to be fair to Mr. Karnavas, because I did
21 raise this with him, and he was kind enough, and I do thank him,
22 yesterday to provide a proofing note, presumably after meeting with
23 Mr. Zuzul over the weekend or at some time, of about a page and a half of
24 a letter, about a page and a half of a letter, which I think the Chamber
25 may have also received.
1 Now, again, let me be measured. I appreciate and I thank
2 Mr. Karnavas for having provided that letter, but it is, in itself, an
3 anomaly and actually illustrates the Prosecution's point. A proofing
4 note is prepared to supplement and to correct, if necessary, a prior
5 statement, so that the person -- the opposing party, the people preparing
6 to meet that evidence, are duly advised, are duly advised of any
7 additions or corrections to the statement, but it is an anomaly, one that
8 we appreciate but nonetheless an anomaly, to get a proofing note that
9 corrects or supplements something that doesn't exist. We have no
10 statement. We have no statement, and all we know is we have seven
11 binders of documents concerning the evidence of a witness which will
12 touch upon the JCE.
13 Now, Your Honour, that's, among other things -- it also
14 represents a matter of fundamental fairness to the process and in
15 relation to the Prosecution witnesses. There cannot, Your Honours, there
16 cannot be a rule or a practice that says that Prosecution witnesses are
17 subject to greater scrutiny and greater testing of their evidence than
18 Defence witnesses. With a Prosecution witness, we must have a prior
19 statement. With a Prosecution witness, we can test any inconsistencies
20 with prior statements. But with the Defence witness, well, we'll give
21 the Defence witness a pass. We'll make it the Defence witness, we don't
22 have to do that. The Defence witness is not subject to the same scrutiny
23 or to have his or her evidence tested to the same degree as a Prosecution
24 witness. That is a double standard that the Trial Chamber should not
1 It is further, Your Honours, a matter of efficiency, and while
2 that word is sometimes given a bad rap, if you will, efficiency is
3 absolutely required if this trial process can move forward at any sort of
4 a pace that the Trial Chamber, I know and we all know, wishes it to
5 proceed. But in order to allow opposing counsel or opposing parties to
6 prepare, there must be adequate information provided.
7 The Chamber knows, according to the Chamber's requirements and
8 guidelines, that the cross-examining party has to provide copies of
9 cross-examination exhibits. They have to be prepared in advance, and, by
10 necessity, even far before the direct examination is finished because you
11 can't make 15 copies of voluminous documents in five minutes. So when
12 the direct examination finishes, we can't just automatically produce all
13 the documents for cross-examination in 15 copies that have been organised
14 and with no previous information having been received about the witness.
15 So, Your Honour, not only is it an issue -- Your Honours, it is
16 not only an issue of fairness. It is also one of efficiency, which
17 touches on fairness, because then what the Prosecution is required to do,
18 and with respect, what the Prosecution has been required to do concerning
19 Mr. Zuzul is make some sort of guess, "Well, it's going to touch upon the
20 JCE," and therefore we have to be over-broad, over-inclusive in the
21 material that we prepare, in the amount of documents that we select, that
22 our trial support staff and others then have to prepare, because we don't
23 know what the actual evidence of the witness who is coming is going to
25 Your Honour, in our respectful submission, these raise serious
1 issues. This is not a technical matter. This raises serious issues as
2 to the fundamental fairness of the process, and not only disadvantages
3 the Prosecution, but, frankly, it disadvantages the Judges as well.
4 So, Your Honour, we would ask the Chamber to address this matter
5 and that full and fair -- at least full and fair summaries be provided.
6 And in addition, if at all possible, statements for the witness can be
8 Thank you.
9 MR. KARNAVAS: If I may be heard --
10 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Before hearing you, and of course we will hear
11 you with great interest, but I would like to ask Mr. Scott whether he has
12 some proposal or motion regarding the hearing of this witness today,
13 tomorrow, and so forth.
14 MR. SCOTT: Yes, Your Honour, I do. I think that in this
15 particular instance, hoping that we can adopt a different procedure in
16 the future, but we can't today, we can't now with a fact, if you will,
17 with respect, our proposal would be that assuming that we can complete
18 the -- assuming that the direct examination of this witness and any
19 further of the other Defence questioning that we've discussed by the
20 other Defence teams, assuming that all that questioning can be completed
21 by Thursday, that now having received for the first time to know what the
22 evidence is that the Prosecution is required to meet, we think that if
23 that is the case, and since and only, and only because Monday is a
24 holiday and only because our team is willing to work through the weekend,
25 that if we -- if the evidence -- other evidence is completed by Thursday,
1 we would be prepared to begin cross-examination on Tuesday.
2 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Thank you for this clarification.
3 Excuse me, Mr. Karnavas.
4 MR. KARNAVAS: That's okay, Your Honour.
5 Let me address that last point because I think it's false for the
6 Prosecution to stand here and say, with a straight face, that this is the
7 first time they know of the evidence, and I think it would be false for
8 the Judges to look me in the eye and say that is the case, as well,
9 because as of March 31st, you, Your Honours, as well as the Prosecutor,
10 were provided, as well as my colleagues, with the number of documents
11 that this witness, along with the other witnesses, would talk about. So
12 he had ample time to look through. He's had years to read those
13 documents. Many of the documents are "P" documents. "P" stands for
14 what? "Prosecution." "D" documents stand for "Defence," some of which
15 are already entered into evidence, others of which are connected to the
16 "P" Prosecution documents. Therefore, I find it rather ironic - in fact
17 it's supremely ironic - for of all people, Mr. Scott, who knows this case
18 better than anybody, working seven, eight years on it, to sit here and
19 say that now, for the first time, he's dumbfounded and now he's going to
20 have to need time to prepare to challenge the JCE of which Mr. Zuzul will
21 touch upon. That's number 1.
22 Number 2, the Rules do not require for me to take statements.
23 That is very, very clear. We only need to provide summaries.
24 Third, may I point out, may I point out that on March 31st, we
25 provided the summaries as we were required. As of March 31st, Your
1 Honours as well as the Prosecutor had those summaries. As of March 31st,
2 the Prosecutor could have -- could have raised that issue, as opposed to
3 today. And I won't go into any reasons why today he chose to spend 20
4 minutes addressing this issue, but he could have raised it. We even had
5 a hearing, and I believe that was on the 21st. It wasn't raised back
6 then. So clearly, if Mr. Scott had a problem with the summaries, I think
7 acting due diligently, especially when he indicated that he is overly
8 concerned about -- I believe the word "efficiency" was used, then he
9 should have brought it well in advance when we could have addressed it on
10 the 21st. And, of course, had I been ordered to provide additional
11 information, I probably would have been able to do so under the
13 Now, the Rules do not say that I have to do a statement or that I
14 have to go through each and every document and pointing out exactly what
15 part of the document I'm going to refer to. For instance, we have
16 presidential transcripts. In those presidential transcripts, many of
17 which we have seen here, some of them have Mr. Zuzul in. Now, you don't
18 have to be a 25-year veteran, a career prosecutor, to figure out that
19 you're going to be focusing, among other things, on what Mr. Zuzul said,
20 or at least knowing based on the little tidbit I gave him, because he's
21 claiming that I've been, you know, rather stingy with my parceling of my
22 information to him, that probably I would be asking Mr. Zuzul, since he
23 was present during those discussions, to give us some insight, and I
24 believe I might have even used that word once or twice, maybe even in my
25 proofing notes, that he would give insight.
1 So I don't see where the problem lies. If you look at other
2 documents. For instance, we have the Friendship And Cooperation
3 Agreement. How often have we seen that document? How many witnesses
4 were paraded by the Prosecution? So is there something in that document
5 that I can possibly yank out that isn't there on the four corners of the
6 page? Of course not. But if you look at my summary, you'll see that
7 Mr. Zuzul was an active participant, you know, almost shadowing in some
8 ways Mr. Tudjman on events, and so he has some insight. You know, the
9 JCE talks about the carving up of Bosnia-Herzegovina. That's going to be
10 one of the issues, okay? Maybe he'll talk about the confederation issue
11 because that's touched upon.
12 So if you glean through the documents, Your Honours, it's -- you
13 don't have to be a veteran. In fact, with no disrespect to Stevie
14 Wonder, even he could see exactly where I'm going if he had these
15 documents. It's that plain and simple.
16 Now, that said, Mr. Scott contacted me. We have been rather busy
17 primarily because of the last-minute circumstances. I understand that he
18 had some concerns. I tried to address them as best as I could. I made a
19 phone call. I spoke with the case manager, and as he well knows and as I
20 well know, that sometimes, you know, it's a lot more difficult to get --
21 even once the witness is here, to sit down and actually get all the
22 information in an appropriate time to get it to the other party.
23 I finished the proofing notes - although Mr. Scott doesn't like
24 the fact that I characterized them as proofing notes, but in fact that's
25 what they were - Sunday night at approximately 12.00 or 1.00, and one of
1 my staff, who actually was still working Sunday night. Unfortunately, we
2 weren't able to e-mail it until the morning probably because we were
3 still trying to deal with other technical issues.
4 I take Mr. Scott to heart. I will sit down with him. I will ask
5 him concretely what more information would he have liked to have seen. I
6 don't agree with what he's saying, that he cannot cross-examine until
7 next week, and frankly I would oppose to that. I would oppose to it
8 vehemently, and I'll tell you why. First, I think we're going to be
9 through with the questioning way before Thursday, but even if it only
10 takes us to Thursday, I would ask that we not handle it next week. Why?
11 Because all the other witnesses are preprogramed.
12 I had his colleague -- Mr. Stringer asked me, "Are we still on
13 for the next witness?" And I said, "Yes." So if now we have to use up
14 Tuesday with Mr. Zuzul, it throws everything off because everybody is
16 I would suggest, and I want to be fair to Mr. Scott -- God knows
17 I would love for him to feel at the end of the case that we on the
18 Defence side have been fair to the Prosecution. I would suggest that we
19 pick a further date down the road, and I would suggest -- we have two
20 particular weeks in mind; one -- because I anticipated Mr. Scott standing
21 up and making a big fuss. He's predictable in some ways, as I am too.
22 We have two weeks in particular. One is the Friday of 18 July.
23 Now, I haven't mentioned this with Mr. Zuzul, but that week we happen to
24 be going five days, and that would not upset the axis, as it were. You
25 know, the other one would be the following Monday, which is Monday, the
1 21st of July, because we're due to sit all day that day.
2 So I would say that if, and that's a big qualifier, if we run out
3 of time or if the Prosecution needs additional time, then we can choose
4 those two days, and I don't think that they can cry foul because, one,
5 they have more time to prepare. Two, they have -- you know, it's well in
6 advance, they're not going to be prejudiced in any way. And, three, and
7 more importantly, this has happened to us at least on two or three prior
8 occasions. So -- but I would not agree with his assessment that -- or
9 his urging the Trial Chamber to adopt a rule that is not in the Rules,
10 that has been heavily discussed, having sat on the Rules committee
11 myself, you know, that the Defence is not obligated to provide a
12 statement. They're entitled to provide summaries, and of course if the
13 summaries are incomplete, we can provide more, more information. If
14 that's his problem, we can go through the witnesses. I'm willing to sit
16 This is the first that I've heard that it was so complicated that
17 they're unable to do their cross-examination, but again I want to
18 emphasise that they've had the documents. In fact, all the binders that
19 they've had, we've streamlined it. We've added one or two, of which we
20 gave notice, but, by and large, all the other documents that they've had,
21 with the exception that some have already been trimmed out because we're
22 trying to be as efficient as possible. And I must say that it is not
23 sometimes until you -- the witness comes to The Hague and you proof them,
24 because some of these witnesses are extremely busy. I don't have the
25 same power of subpoena or the same august presence, as it were, as the
1 Prosecution. When he shows up at the presidential palace, you know, they
2 know he's from the Office of the Prosecution. When I go, I'm like
3 Oliver Twist with a cup in hand, knocking, saying, "Please, would you let
4 me in," you know. So it's not easy for me to get all these witnesses to
5 actually sit down with me in the field for a detailed analysis, you know,
6 but we will do our level best.
7 Finally, let me address the first issue. Of course, we would
8 agree with the Prosecution that the statement should have been made
9 public. After all, the reason that we kept it -- I had moved that it not
10 be public on the grounds that it was still being litigated. And once we
11 had a final conclusion on that, there is no other reason, and I don't see
12 any confidential information in there so obviously we want a public
13 trial. We've stressed it from the very beginning. We have nothing to
14 hide, and so we concur and we join the Prosecution in that motion.
15 See, here is a good example of great cooperation between the
16 Defence and the Prosecution.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you very much,
18 Mr. Karnavas.
19 As regard the unsealing of the statement, the Chamber will rule
20 over that issue. Apparently, there will be no difficulty.
21 As far as the second issue is concerned, you've mentioned
22 Oliver Twist. Somebody else mentioned Stevie Wonder. I could also talk
23 about the Judges, the Judges who were also the drafters of the Rules. Of
24 course, it did not escape the Judges' attention, because over the several
25 weeks that we dedicated to several issues, we realised indeed that there
1 was no statement for Defence witnesses. We took a look at the Rules, and
2 the Prosecution has the obligation to provide statements. This
3 obligation is not a Defence's obligation. So you're both right to raise
4 that issue.
5 But after 15 years of existence of that Tribunal, I believe it
6 belonged -- it was up to the various Prosecution teams to raise that
7 issue from the very beginning and not some 15 years later.
8 There is a commission being set up at the moment, a commission
9 which will see how we can speed up the various trials, and I'm sure that
10 this will be part of the agenda of that commission.
11 I read the various summaries, and in particular the summary of
12 that witness statement, and I did realise that there were a lot of things
13 missing. Therefore, I tried to study that summary in order to determine
14 the possible duration of the -- duration of the time to be allotted to
15 the Defence for that particular witness. But with a summary such as this
16 one, it is not enough for me to make such a determination.
17 And Mr. Scott is right in stating his position and in saying
18 that, "It is not on the basis of such a summary that I can work on an
19 equitable basis within this trial." He's right, too, but unfortunately
20 you are not responsible of this state of facts. It is the Judges whom at
21 the very beginning did not realise that such a problem was going to
22 appear. And I said it before and I can repeat it again. If everything
23 had been controlled prior to now, we wouldn't have to have that kind of
24 discussion. Unfortunately, this is too late now. Of course, the Chamber
25 will make a determination because we've been asked to do so by Mr. Scott,
1 and we'll see how we can work this out in the future. But as regards the
2 current witness, it's too late.
3 Now, Mr. Scott complained about documents. I've had a look at
4 the five binders while you were talking, and what did I see? There are
5 four binders containing "P" documents, documents coming from the
6 Prosecution, so the Prosecution of course is very well aware of these
7 documents. It would be quite impossible to think that he isn't.
8 Now, as regards binder number 1, which is the 1D binder, I had a
9 quick look at those documents. I don't need hours to do so. And what
10 did I see? There's a whole bunch of documents which relate to two books
11 which are well known by the Prosecution. It would be unbelievable that
12 the Prosecution didn't know anything about those books. There are
13 several documents relating to the Security Council. There again, it
14 would be quite hard to believe that the Prosecution doesn't know anything
15 about those documents. And there are also some various documents, and
16 there again we don't need hours to understand the content of the
18 So Mr. Scott is saying, "I cannot use those documents to make
19 sure that I can explain my case." I don't agree with him, because I
20 don't think the documents provided by the Defence are unsurmountable.
21 We'll see if we can make a determination and see if from now on we're
22 going to request the Defence teams to provide statements. It's never
23 been done before. It would be quite a revolution in the Tribunal, but
24 sometimes revolutions are useful to take things forward.
25 If we were to determine that from now on, before a Defence
1 witness is heard, we need a statement, a complete, comprehensive
2 statement such as the kind of statements that we request for Prosecution
4 Mr. Scott, you're on your feet. Would you like to add anything?
5 MR. KHAN: Perhaps --
6 MR. SCOTT: I could respond to Mr. Karnavas first, perhaps, and
7 the Chamber's observations, if the counsel might allow me.
8 MR. KHAN: Your Honour, as a matter of efficiency that my learned
9 friend alluded to, it just may be more expeditious to respond to the
10 Defence response in toto. He did predicate his remarks as having general
11 application to all Defence teams. So I think it would be more efficient
12 that I be heard, and then of course he should be given proper time to
14 MR. SCOTT: I'm happy to defer to Mr. Khan, Your Honour. That's
15 fine. Thank you.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Khan.
17 MR. KHAN: Your Honour, there are three distinction applications
18 put forward by my learned friend. In relation to P 9078, there's no
19 objection at all to the exhibit being made public. Indeed, the Defence
20 starting point is that as much of this trial as possible should be in
21 open session and there should be a very -- Your Honours should be slow in
22 keeping any exhibit confidential unless good cause is shown.
23 In relation to the sufficiency, this was the third point of my
24 learned friend -- in relation to the sufficiency of 65 ter (G)
25 statements, Your Honour, that's a matter between my learned friend
1 Mr. Karnavas and the Trial Chamber, and I don't wish to speak to that.
2 However, I will say that my learned friend Mr. Scott has proposed a
3 definition as to what amounts to a proofing statement. Of course, my
4 learned friend knows very well that the Rules are completely silent as to
5 proofing. There is no public -- as far as I'm aware, no public
6 prosecution guidelines as the probity and proper conduct of what are
7 often called these proofing sessions. They are behind closed doors,
8 there are no transcripts, they're not video-recorded, and they are
9 matters that have had concerns for the Defence in many cases in the past.
10 And, of course, it is a practice that has been frowned upon and
11 prohibited, indeed, by the International Criminal Court.
12 The main submission that has relevance to my -- to the Defence
13 for Bruno Stojic is focused on the Prosecution's submission as to the
14 entitlement to a Defence witness statement and the ostensible prejudice
15 caused to the Prosecution by not having such a statement.
16 My learned friend Mr. Scott is of course a very experienced
17 lawyer with much experience not just in this jurisdiction but in the
18 United States. And of course he knows full well that in the United
19 States not only would he, as a prosecutor, not have access to the name of
20 a Defence witness, he would not have a summary at all or any exhibits at
21 all, and that is something that American prosecutors deal with very
22 familiarly and without any difficulty in many cases indeed.
23 Your Honour has said that, of course, the Tribunal is more than
24 14 years old. It can hardly be said, in the Defence's respectful
25 submission, that the quality of justice of this International Criminal
1 Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia
2 deficient because of a rule which has not obligated the Defence
3 previously to give witness statements.
4 The burden of proof is on the Prosecution. They have framed the
5 indictment. They have chosen the breadth of the charges. And an
6 accused, of course, can sit on his hands and say nothing and say, "Prove
7 your case." The issues of disclosure flow from that basic reality. The
8 Prosecution bring this case. They must have confidence to prove the case
9 beyond reasonable doubt.
10 Now, I was gratified -- I was gratified that my learned friend
11 has conceded this is not an easy case. I am gratified, because when one
12 sits back and remembers the 98 bis submissions that had been made by some
13 of my colleagues here, one can be forgiven for getting the impression
14 from my learned friend's very eloquent and sensible submissions, as he
15 would say, that this is an open-and-shut cases.
16 Your Honours, of course, the Defence for each of the accused will
17 no doubt seek to reveal some of the complexity of this case in their
18 respective defences.
19 Your Honour, the Rule requirement for witness statements was
20 enacted only in March of this year, and it's very clear that the
21 obligation to provide witness statements is only if they exist. It's
22 very clear. There's been no practice in this Tribunal that the Defence
23 have to give witness statements. Your Honour, it flows not just -- this
24 is an important point, in my respectful submission, and I would urge
25 Your Honours to have, as you will do, proper sensitivity to the
1 difficulties in defending these cases. It flows not just from the
2 presumption of innocence. It is resource led.
3 The Prosecution have very experienced investigators. They have
4 them from Scotland Yard. They have them from the United States, from --
5 proper trained investigators. The Defence in international courts,
6 whether it's here, Rwanda
7 obtain and recruit, in many situations, trained investigators. Very
8 often they are junior individuals or accountants or people that are
9 working as investigators.
10 A statement is a product -- I'm grateful. A statement is a
11 product of a relationship between a witness and an investigator, and if
12 one is forced because of circumstance to have perhaps not a
13 professionally-trained investigator who takes a statement and then hands
14 it over to a prosecution if a statement is taken, of course it would be
15 fantastic for my learned friend, because they would say, "Well, this is
16 ambiguous, this is a contradiction." That may not flow -- it may not, it
17 may, but it may not necessarily flow from any deficiency in the witness's
18 recollection of events. It may be a product of the lack of a trained
19 investigator. That is an additional factor I would ask Your Honours to
20 have -- to consider when looking at the Rules.
21 Your Honour, of course the Defence are obligated to follow the
22 Rules, whether we like it or not, and if statements are available, if
23 statements have been taken, of course the new Rule 67 obliges us to
24 disclose it. But, Your Honours, it would be completely unfair to ask a
25 Defence team, for a trial that's been going on for more than a year and a
1 half, to go back and take statements when there's no requirement in the
2 Rules, there's no obligation in the Rules or in the Code of Professional
3 Conduct, for the Defence to take witness statements.
4 The Defence do not reveal their work product, and of course any
5 attempt now to require the Defence, you know, to produce notes that are
6 not statements runs contrary to fair notice and the clear terms of the
7 Rules that Your Honours will, of course, have to apply when considering
8 my learned friend's application.
9 Your Honour, that's all I have to say on the matter. I hope it's
10 been delivered -- at least it's intended to be delivered with a spirit of
11 cooperation, but they are matters that are of concern to the Defence as
12 we go ahead.
13 I'm grateful.
14 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [No interpretation]
15 MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I don't want to take
16 up a lot of time, but just for the record I would like to state quite
17 clearly that I fully support the arguments presented by Bruno Stojic's
18 Defence. And I would just like to underline once again that we prepared
19 our Defence cases in line with the current Rules and current
20 jurisprudence before this Tribunal, and according to those Rules we don't
21 have to have a statement for the viva voce witnesses. We have to have
22 the notes of the investigators and notes of the Defence counsel that
23 would be sufficient for us to draft the summary, but enough to satisfy
24 the requirements in 65 ter (G). But we don't have to have a statement.
25 Of course, the situation is different when we have 92 ter and
1 92 bis witnesses, but when we're talking about viva voce witnesses, we
2 don't have to provide statements, and nobody has ever had to provide
3 statements for such witnesses.
4 I just wanted to stress that I support --
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Stewart for Mr. Petkovic.
6 MR. STEWART: Just to say, Your Honours, that the Petkovic
7 Defence also supports and endorses what Mr. Khan has said.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Stewart. For
9 Mr. Coric.
10 MS. TOMASEGOVIC-TOMIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, Mr. Coric's
11 Defence endorses what the previous Defence counsel have said.
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. I see you hiding
13 behind a pillar, sir.
14 MR. SAHOTA: Yes, I am. Mr. President, just some very short
15 remarks. I would like also to echo and endorse the submissions by all my
16 learned friends on the Defence benches this afternoon. I would like to
17 add this.
18 Mr. President, if it is the case that the Trial Chamber is about
19 to deliberate on the application of Rule 67(a), then may I suggest that a
20 direction be made for all interested parties, all the Defence teams, and
21 indeed the Prosecution, to file written submissions within a deadline
22 that can be set at your discretion.
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you.
24 Mr. Scott, now you've heard all the interventions from all the
25 Defence teams.
1 MR. SCOTT: Yes, Your Honour. Thank you very much.
2 Just to respond very briefly, and I must say, again, I try to be
3 very careful with my comments or my statements of concern, not to
4 indicate any bad faith or make any allegations against counsel, but
5 simply to raise what we believe is a substantive issue. So, again,
6 I think counsel can refrain from, you know, talking about what the
7 Prosecution counsel could or couldn't do or should or shouldn't have
9 I must note that when Mr. Karnavas, and the Chamber perhaps will
10 recall the fact -- the circumstances of this situation, I must note that
11 when Mr. Karnavas says that someone from the Prosecution shows up at the
12 presidential palace, they take note. Well, unfortunately not. The
13 Chamber may recall that we were unable to produce one particular witness
14 having to do with the presidential palace, despite our good efforts
15 trying to do so. So the Prosecution, sadly, is not all-powerful by any
16 means. Not even close, quite frankly.
17 Further, Your Honour, and to respond to what Mr. Karnavas had
18 indicated, and I didn't really necessary get into the details of this,
19 but again since Mr. Karnavas raised the points, he indicated that I had
20 raised this matter belatedly.
21 I sent a letter to Mr. Karnavas last Thursday, I have a copy of
22 it here, in which I raise this issue, and I suggested that -- I
23 respectfully asked Mr. Karnavas if he could possibly provide us a revised
24 and substantially supplemented summary by Friday afternoon so that the
25 Prosecution, working on the weekend, could at least go into the weekend
1 with that sufficient information. So it wasn't -- I'm not raising it for
2 the first time today. I raised it in a letter to Mr. Karnavas last
3 Thursday, in the hopes that we would have something by Friday afternoon.
4 But -- well, I know everyone's busy. I'm not attributing any bad faith.
5 But the fact of the matter is we were not able to obtain any additional
7 I also called Mr. Karnavas's office on Sunday afternoon to see if
8 anything else might be available, but I was not able to reach -- I was
9 not able to reach Mr. Karnavas at that time.
10 So those are -- those are -- and specifically approximately 3.00,
11 or 2.30 or 3.00, Mr. Karnavas.
12 Now, Your Honour, I again invite the Chamber to look at the
13 actual summary, look at the actual summary that is on the 65 ter (G)
14 list, compare it to what Rule 65 ter (G)(i)(b) requires, and,
15 Your Honours, I submit -- and Mr. Karnavas says that I've been working on
16 this case for years and I couldn't possibly be dumbfounded, but I
17 actually am regularly dumbfounded by many things. But the fact that I've
18 been working on this case for some years, and I hope I know it reasonably
19 well, not perfectly, be that as it may, Your Honours, I am not
20 required -- with all respect, I am not required, even with whatever
21 knowledge I have, to make a best guess as to what the witness's evidence
22 is going to be. We don't have to operate on that basis. The words of
23 the Rule are clear. What must be provided are a statement of the facts
24 on which the witness will testify. Now, that's not Ken Scott's words,
25 that's what the Rule says, "the facts on which the witness will testify."
1 Now, further, Your Honour, putting aside whatever the practices
2 have been in the past about witness statements, and I won't say anything
3 more about that now - it might come up again perhaps in the future - I
4 won't say anything more about that now, but to say that because a
5 document has a "P" number, just because a document has a "P" number, that
6 I should then be able to guess as to its use or application with every
7 particular witness, is absurd, is absurd, and the Rules do not require me
8 to do that. Whatever the Rules may or may not be about statements,
9 Rule 65 ter (G)(i)(b) is not a new Rule. It's been on the books for a
10 long time, and it is very clear, what it requires. And while the Defence
11 may tell you all day long that you cannot perhaps require them to prepare
12 witness statements, I leave that in the Chamber's further consideration.
13 What the Rule clearly does provide and what this Chamber can
14 require, absolutely, is a fair and sufficient summary that the
15 Rule requires, a detailed summary, whatever you want to call it. It may
16 not be a signed statement, but it's a detailed and sufficient -- I
17 emphasise the word, sufficient statement of what the evidence of the
18 witness is going to be, and the Chamber can order that, has absolute
19 prerogative and power under the Rules to order that.
20 Finally, Your Honours, of course in terms of the 15 years of the
21 Tribunal, one can only say and one can only hope it's never too late to
22 be fair.
23 Thank you.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You're indeed right. Yes,
25 it's always possible to rectify something that's wrong.
1 Now, regarding this witness, here's my concern: We've got five
2 hours scheduled by the Defence. I've had a look at the documents. It
3 doesn't seem to be too much. The other Defence teams will have
4 50 per cent of this time, i.e., two hours and a half. I'm sure that some
5 Defence teams will be willing to ask questions to such witness, to the
6 said witness. If we add to this the time needed by the Prosecution for
7 the cross-examination, five hours maybe, and if we add on top of this the
8 questions that the Judges will want to ask, we won't finish by Thursday.
9 A first option would be to continue next week on Tuesday, but of
10 course there will be a problem with the witness scheduled on Tuesday, as
11 indicated by Mr. Karnavas. The other option, therefore, would be to
12 conclude the examination-in-chief this week, maybe the Judges could also
13 ask questions on the basis of the examination-in-chief, and then we could
14 postpone the cross-examination to, for instance, Friday, July the 18th,
15 as proposed by Mr. Karnavas a moment ago.
16 Mr. Scott, what's your preference? Since you will be the one
17 doing the cross-examination, what's your choice?
18 MR. SCOTT: Thank you, Your Honour.
19 I understand, first of all, the problems with scheduling
20 witnesses, no one understands that better than the Prosecution, which has
21 done the last two years doing exactly that, so we understand the
23 My first preference, having said that, would be to finish the
24 witness next week so that all of us can have the witness behind us and
25 have the evidence of the witness in full. That would be my first
1 preference. But having said that, if indeed it raises great difficulties
2 for Mr. Karnavas, then we can seek other alternatives.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Karnavas, the witness
4 scheduled for next week, you've proposed four hours for that witness. We
5 were supposed to hear him on the 13th, the 14th and the 15th of May. Do
6 you absolutely want to start on Tuesday with that witness?
7 MR. KARNAVAS: Well, let me begin by saying that from now until
8 July, until the break, we have our witnesses locked in to certain weeks.
9 Some of these witnesses are terribly busy and they have commitments, some
10 around the globe, so getting them to commit has been very difficult.
11 That's why -- now, following -- next week's witness, at one point,
12 because this issue came up - we talked about it this morning, what
13 if - it's impossible for me to do the next witness in two days, that is,
14 for direct and cross, given -- given the topic which has to do with
15 refugees in Croatia
16 ties into the previous witness, you know, and then of course we round it
17 off, so I'm afraid that we cannot do so.
18 Now, I understand the Prosecutor would like to just get it over
19 with because, after all, they'll be more prepared or more fresh and
20 they'll have to re-prepare again. On the other hand, I just heard an
21 earful, in fact an hour's full of earful, of complaints that they don't
22 have enough time. Now, I'm giving them and you're giving them,
23 Mr. President, until July 18th, and I understand it may be somewhat
24 inconvenient, but I did hear that Mr. Scott is not opposed to that. I
25 haven't talked with the witness, but I think this may be a sufficient
1 time for him to arrange his schedule, too, because as I understand it, he
2 has commitments the following week, and when you see his background you
3 will understand that for me to get a hold of him even for a half an hour
4 in Zagreb
5 dealing with these sorts of individuals who are very, very busy, very
6 talented, and in much demand by a lot of folks. And, frankly, to ask
7 someone to come here to devote a week of their time for someone that they
8 casually know or have worked with, is -- that, in and of itself,
9 demonstrates the Herculean effort that I'm having to make, plus the
10 commitment the witness has to getting -- to seeing that justice is done
11 in this courtroom.
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Well, we shall rule straight
13 away to know what we are supposed to do.
14 [Trial Chamber confers]
15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
16 The Judges discussed the issue, and we decide that the witness
17 will be examined in chief, with possible questions by the Judges. As to
18 further cross-examination by the Prosecution, it will take place on the
19 18th of July. On account of his various commitments, the witness can
20 schedule to appear on the 18th of July so that everybody will be happy.
21 Good. Let's have the witness brought in.
22 Mr. Karnavas, you were asking for a break, because in basketball
23 that's sort of break time, half-time.
24 MR. KARNAVAS: Mr. President, we've had an hour. Hopefully, this
25 won't happen again, but I think it would be better to just take a break
1 now and then we can go through the rest. And, frankly, I've been a
2 little frazzled by all of this commotion, and I came here already -- and
3 I already had nerves, but now I'm really nervous, so I could use the
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Let's have a 20-minute break,
6 and we shall resume at 5.20 until 7.00.
7 --- Recess taken at 5.04 p.m.
8 --- On resuming at 5.24 p.m.
9 [The witness entered court]
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Sir, would you mind standing
12 THE WITNESS: I apologise.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You're about to make a solemn
14 declaration, but before you do so, can you please state your name,
15 surname, and date of birth.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Momir Zuzul, born on the 19th of
17 June, 1955.
18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Could you tell me whether you
19 have a current occupation? And if so, which is that occupation?
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I teach at a university, but now
21 I'm a consultant and adviser for international relations and
22 international affairs.
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Have you had an opportunity to
24 testify before a court on the events that took place in the former
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I have not testified yet. This is
2 the first time that I'm testifying.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Can you please read out the
4 solemn declaration.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will
6 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
7 WITNESS: MOMIR ZUZUL
8 [The witness answered through interpreter]
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, sir. Please be
11 Sir, you will have to answer questions asked by Mr. Prlic's
12 counsel. You met with him in the last 48 hours. This is an examination
13 that is going to take a long time, at least five hours, after which the
14 other Defence counsel, as part of a cross-examination, will ask questions
15 of you, and the Judges, the four Judges you have in front of you, can
16 also ask questions. Normally speaking, the Prosecutor, who's seated to
17 your right, was supposed to cross-examine you, but for procedural reasons
18 it was decided that the cross-examination would take place later. It
19 could take place on Friday, the 18th of July. You will therefore have to
20 come back and take -- make arrangements for the cross-examination to take
21 place on the 18th of July. This is what I wanted to convey to you. As
22 an academic, but also as a former diplomat, you are accurate and I ask
23 you to be accurate and brief in your answers. If you fail to understand
24 the meaning of a question, do not hesitate. Ask the one putting the
25 question to you to rephrase it.
1 Normally speaking, we have breaks every 90 minutes, but since we
2 had a break already, we're going to carry on until 7.00 tonight, and we
3 shall resume tomorrow at 2.15 in the afternoon. If at any point in time,
4 for a reason, whatever it is, you need to have a break, just raise your
5 hand and ask us to make a break. Of course, we are at your disposal for
6 any questions you might have.
7 So this is it in just a few words. This is how the testimony is
8 going to take place.
9 Now, Mr. Karnavas, you have the floor. You may proceed. And we
10 are now counting your time.
11 MR. KARNAVAS: Thank you, Mr. President. Thank you, Your
13 Examination by Mr. Karnavas:
14 Q. Good afternoon, Mr. Zuzul, and my deepest apologies for having
15 you wait in that room while we took care of some technical matters here.
16 Let me begin by asking you a little bit about your background.
17 We'll start with your education, and then if you could briefly tell us
18 about your professional experiences.
19 A. Most of my education I did in Zagreb. I studied and graduated in
20 psychology at the Zagreb University
21 PhD, again in psychology. I spent some time at the Harvard University
22 After completing my studies, I worked as a psychologist for a while. And
23 since 1979, I've worked at the Zagreb University
24 lecturer and finally as a full professor. I held various posts at the
25 university. I was the deputy dean for psychology of the Department of
1 Psychology, and just before the war in the former Yugoslavia broke out, I
2 was the deputy dean of the Faculty of Philosophy in Zagreb and also head
3 of the chair for children's and developmental psychology.
4 I participated in the work of various international
5 organisations, psychologists' associations. I was also a member of the
6 presidency of several international organisations that dealt with
7 psychology or with mental health.
8 From this period of my professional career, I perhaps could say
9 that I was particularly interested in studying aggressive behaviour. I
10 published several papers and books that dealt with this area.
11 In the early 1990s, I was not involved in politics in Croatia
12 indeed, in the former Yugoslavia
14 months in the Croatian Army ranks. For a while, I served in the Croatian
15 Army, and in parallel I worked at the university.
16 There were several of us university teachers in the Croatian
17 Army, and we set up a department that dealt with psychological and
18 informational aspects of the war. This was because of our professional
19 background. Most of us taught psychology or information science.
20 Although at the beginning I was not a member of any political
21 party, that's at the beginning of the 1990s, I however did join the
22 Croatian Democratic Union
23 Vukovar fell. That's when I joined. It was not my intention to fulfill
24 any political ambitions, because I didn't have any at that time. It was
25 a personal act, a symbolical act, an expression of my faith that Croatia
1 would be able to defend itself against the aggression.
2 While I was in the Croatian Army, I was able to talk several
3 times with President Tudjman. I had met him while I still taught, and at
4 that time, that was only once or twice, we discussed the reform of
5 university education. At one point, however, he did suggest that I
6 should take up a post in the government, that I should become the deputy
7 defence minister. I didn't want to take that post because I thought that
8 it would be just an episode in my life. I fully intended to go back to
9 the university.
10 Soon afterwards, President Tudjman offered me a position in the
11 Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The post he offered was the following: I
12 was supposed to put in place the Croatian diplomacy. I was to use my
13 knowledge and my experience as a psychologist.
14 Q. Let me stop you here. What year and what month, date, are we
15 talking about?
16 A. We're talking about March 1992.
17 Q. Okay, all right.
18 A. I accepted this proposal by President Tudjman, and in mid-March
19 or in the second half of March 1992, I was appointed the assistant
20 minister of foreign affairs. As I said, my specific task was to select
21 the future Croatian diplomats.
22 When I joined the foreign ministry, I think that it had about 35
23 employees in total. Although at that time I thought that I would be
24 working there mostly as a psychologist, quite soon I was given an
25 opportunity to work on something that I found of -- to be of great
1 interest at that time, something that I'm still very much interested in,
2 and that's peace negotiations, so that as early as in the beginning of
3 April 1992, I took part in peace negotiations, and I think that sometime
4 in early July I became the deputy foreign minister because of my
5 activities. And then, if I'm not mistaken, it was in September of the
6 same year I became the adviser for national security to the president of
7 the republic. But my primary area of responsibility was peace
8 negotiations or peace talks.
9 After the international conference for the former Yugoslavia
10 established in Geneva
12 would participate in the work of the conference and in the talks. And in
13 that capacity, I participated in most of the talks that took place in
15 to the post of the permanent representative of the Republic of Croatia
16 Since I was the first one to hold that post, there were quite a few of
17 those duties, I think that I signed more international treaties on behalf
18 of Croatia
19 Sometime in early 1994, if I'm not mistaken, when the so-called
20 contact group for peace talks was set up, they were dealing mostly with
21 Bosnia and Herzegovina, but also with the rest of the former Yugoslavia
22 I was appointed the special envoy of the president of the republic, and
23 it was my remit to liaise with the contact group and to get involved in
25 Q. If I can just stop you there. The contact group, if you could
1 just help us out here and just briefly tell us a little bit about that.
2 We're going to go back and touch on some of these other things, but just
3 before we go any further.
4 A. I'm convinced that the work of the contact group would be a topic
5 that would crop up regularly during this trial.
6 It was my impression that the contact group was set up at a time
7 when the conference for the former Yugoslavia
8 it was headed by a representative of the European Union and a
9 representative of the UN Secretary-General - no longer yielded
10 satisfactory results.
11 At that point in time, a group of countries - I think that the
12 United States gave the initiative - set up a pragmatic group of countries
13 called "the contact group." It included representatives from the United
14 States of America
15 that group was not based in any of the multilateral international
16 organisations, it was obvious that it wielded the power that would --
17 that was vested in it by the countries represented in the contact group,
18 and it was through the efforts of the contact group that first the
19 Washington Agreement was signed, and so were the basic principles of the
21 through their efforts.
22 As all of us who follow foreign policy can see, there were
23 several other cases when contact groups were set up to deal with other
24 hot spots all over the world.
25 Q. Now, just to interrupt here. You mention Washington and Dayton
1 Did you participate in those two events, the establishment or the
2 negotiation of the Washington Agreement and of the Dayton Accords?
3 A. Yes, I participated in both those events.
4 As far as the Washington Agreement is concerned, I was there
5 right at the beginning, at the first round of talks about the possibility
6 of reaching an agreement between Bosniaks and Croats. I took part in the
7 pre talks, if I can call them that, preliminary talks in Geneva
8 in Paris, too, and I also participated in the negotiations, the actual
9 negotiations that took place in Vienna
11 Q. What about Dayton
12 A. I think that I can say that I participated in all the stages of
13 the preparations for the Dayton Agreement. I worked closely with
14 Ambassador Holbrooke and all the other people who were preparing the
15 agreement, and in a way I was in charge of organising our delegation, and
16 I was part of the delegation throughout the talks in Dayton. I attended
17 the talks. I came there one day before everyone else, and I left Dayton
18 with everybody else after the agreement was initialled.
19 Q. All right. Now, let me just fast forward, and then we're going
20 to double back.
21 And as I understand it, it was sometime after this period that
22 you served as ambassador to the United States, and also you've been the
23 minister of foreign affairs for the Republic of Croatia
24 A. That's correct.
25 Q. Now, and we can cover that a little bit more later on, but
1 sticking with this as a segue into what I call your association with
2 Tudjman: In light of the fact that you were with -- you negotiated in
4 there, could you briefly tell us, by this point in time, at least, how
5 much time had you spent with President Tudjman either in group settings
6 or one on one? What was your relationship so at least the Trial Chamber
7 can make an assessment as to your knowledge of President Tudjman, his
8 thoughts, his attitudes, because I think that may be important as a
9 staging ground before we launch into these other areas.
10 A. Although it's difficult to assess that in absolute terms, I think
11 that I did spend quite a lot of time with President Tudjman; not as much
12 as the people who worked with him in his office or in various ministries
13 because I spent most of my time abroad. I was not in Croatia. But I can
14 say that I had a direct relationship with him, in other words. So
15 despite the fact that I was in the foreign ministry, I mostly received
16 instructions for my work directly from President Tudjman; not always, but
17 for the most part.
18 I also had an opportunity to present my views to him quite often,
19 and it was my impression that, as a rule, he would always hear me out,
20 and it seemed to me that he valued my opinion, especially when it came to
21 international relations.
22 Q. Okay. Now, just to make sure that -- because I'm told that
23 perhaps there might be an oversight in the record, on page 67, line 16.
24 I believe you said despite the fact that you were deputy foreign
25 minister; in other words, you weren't the foreign minister, you were
1 deputy, you had this close relationship -- close association with
2 President Tudjman; is that correct?
3 A. Yes, that's correct.
4 Q. Now, with that in mind, what I propose to do is first cover some
5 general areas, and then we're going to go through a series of documents.
6 But I think it might be interesting for the Trial Chamber to go right
7 into these issues right from the get go.
8 The Prosecutor and the Prosecution has alleged that President
9 Tudjman had certain attitudes towards Bosnia-Herzegovina. Those
10 attitudes stem from the fact of part of this Banovina Hrvatska?
11 A. [In English] I apologise. There is a mistake in -- even in the
12 English, there is a mistake in the text, that it is written here.
13 Q. Don't worry. If I'm speaking, they're going to correct it.
14 A. [In English] Okay.
15 Q. Okay, in line 10, but I'm glad you're catching it.
16 So my first question, first and foremost, do you feel confident
17 that you spent enough time with President Tudjman and that you knew him
18 well enough to know of his attitudes about Bosnia-Herzegovina,
19 specifically as they related to the Prosecution's allegation that
20 Tudjman, Susak and others were -- had embarked on a joint criminal
21 enterprise to carve up Bosnia-Herzegovina in order to at least take part
22 of the Banovina back and make it part of Croatia. Can you -- help us out
24 A. President Tudjman was a complex person, as a historian, as a
25 statesman, as a person who left his mark on one part of history of a
1 whole region, and to -- it is not really easy to outline his opinion --
2 opinions in just a few sentences, but I think that I had enough
3 opportunity to discuss things with him and that we worked together for a
4 sufficiently long period of time to be able to say, with certainty and
5 conviction, things that you asked me about.
6 Q. All right. Well, let me just cut to the chase. Let me just ask
7 you straightforward.
8 Did you ever hear or did you ever know or did you ever see any
9 document, for that matter, where President Tudjman was advocating for the
10 re-establishment of the Banovina Hrvatska? Especially I ask you that
11 question because the Prosecution has brought witnesses here in this
12 courtroom showing that the Banovina is in the Constitution, in the
13 preamble. We're going to get to that, but so have you ever come across
14 any document, had you ever heard -- overhear a conversation or partake in
15 any conversation with President Tudjman --
16 JUDGE TRECHSEL: I'm sorry, Mr. Karnavas. Is this a
17 non-directive question?
18 MR. KARNAVAS: Yes.
19 JUDGE TRECHSEL: I find it very, very directive, actually.
20 MR. KARNAVAS: Well, I'm asking --
21 JUDGE TRECHSEL: You say everything. He just has to say "yes" or
23 MR. KARNAVAS: No because then the -- I'm going to get him to
24 explain, but if there's a way that you would prefer me to ask the
25 question, because I certainly know the question goes with the answer.
1 Q. Firstly, let me ask you this: I'll break it down. Did you know
2 President Tudjman's attitudes about BiH? And if so, what were those
3 attitudes, clear and cut, knowing the Prosecution's theory?
4 MR. KARNAVAS: Because you got to know that, Your Honours. He's
5 got to know what the Prosecution's theory is.
6 Q. Would you please tell us?
7 A. Well, on the basis of my overall work and all of those things
8 that I know, I could say with full certainty that President Tudjman
9 supported Bosnia and Herzegovina as a sovereign state, that he wanted to
10 have a special relationship with it for several reasons.
11 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreters note, could His Honour
12 Judge Trechsel please switch off his microphone.
13 MR. KARNAVAS:
14 Q. Now, special reasons, if you could tell us, what were those
15 reasons because I want it from your mouth, not from my mouth. I want it
16 for the record. I want the Judges to know exactly what you knew, what
17 you heard, what you saw, what you experienced, what you felt.
18 A. Well, I think that the first reason -- the first reason was
19 because President Tudjman, both as a historian and as a statesman, knew
20 that unless the issue of Bosnia and Herzegovina were resolved, there
21 could be no lasting peace in the region.
22 The second reason was because President Tudjman, both because of
23 his personal traits but also because it was his obligation under the
24 Constitution, had the interests of all the Croats all over the world at
25 heart, in particular Croats who lived in Bosnia and Herzegovina because
1 it was quite clear right from the beginning of the war that the Croats
2 who had lived there for centuries were under threat.
3 The third reason, a very important reason, was that from the
4 beginning of the aggression against the Republic of Croatia
5 those attacks were launched from the territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina
6 and Tudjman, not only because he was a general - this was something that
7 was clear to any layperson - knew that Croatia could not defend itself if
8 this fact was not taken into account, the fact that attacks were launched
9 from the territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
10 Q. Let me stop you right there before you go on.
11 If you could please describe to the Trial Chamber, what efforts
12 did the government of Bosnia-Herzegovina do to stop those attacks being
13 launched into Croatia
14 sort of weapons did they use; what did they do exactly to repel these
16 A. My impression from that time, and this has been confirmed after
17 I've read some documents relating to this period, was that the leadership
18 of Bosnia and Herzegovina did nothing. Quite the opposite was true. In
19 the critical moments, in the first months of the aggression against
21 said that it was not their war.
22 Q. All right. Let me stop you right here because we have a map, and
23 because you said that Croatia
24 those arrows that are there, but if you could tell us -- at least because
25 of your experience, you told us that you had served in the army; early on
1 you had joined. Could you tell us a little bit about where the attacks
2 came from and how it impacted on Croatia because I think it might be
3 good -- just might be good for the Trial Chamber to know about where and
4 how Croatia
5 fully understand and comprehend the context in which Croatia
6 having this relationship which you speak of and will be speaking about
7 with Bosnia-Herzegovina.
8 A. Although I did spend some time in the military, I do not consider
9 myself a military expert, but you don't really need a lot of military
10 expertise for what I'm about to tell you.
11 Whoever drew in those axes of attacks on Croatia was correct.
12 This is how those attacks were executed, and I have nothing to add or to
13 take away. This is really how the aggression against Croatia progressed,
14 and when you look at the map, you will see that a fewer -- fewer attacks
15 were actually launched from the territory of Serbia
16 mostly Vukovar, at the beginning of the war, also to Osijek.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, I'm sorry for
18 intervening. I'm saying "witness." I could say "minister" or
19 "professor" or "ambassador."
20 On several occasions, you spoke about the aggression against
22 dates? When was there an aggression? Could you tell us what the legal
23 situation was for Croatia
24 its relationship with the former Yugoslavia
25 in your answers so that the Judges can reorientate themselves, knowing,
1 of course, that this was a very complex situation?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I will try to do
3 that, but I have to apologise in advance if I fail to provide accurate
4 dates. I will be focusing more on situations.
5 After the Croatian people took part in a referendum and opted for
7 became clear that it would be unrealistic to expect that it could
8 continue being part of the former Yugoslavia
9 that President Tudjman, together with the Slovenian representative,
10 President Kucan, did table a proposal under which Yugoslavia could
11 continue to exist as a confederation of sovereign states. And when this
12 proposal was rejected, the Yugoslav Army tried to prevent Slovenia from
13 leaving Yugoslavia
14 have to apologise once again if I fail to provide accurate dates.
15 The Yugoslav Army failed to stop Slovenia
16 or the attack, if you will, did not go on for too long.
17 There were two parallel developments in Croatia at the time in
18 progress. Some of the Serbs living in Croatia fell under the influence
19 of Greater Serbian ideas derived from Belgrade. These Serbs, to all
20 practical intents, occupied or seized part of Croatia's territory, having
21 previously expelled all non-Serbs from those areas, particularly in the
22 area surrounding the town of Knin
23 It was hand in hand with these developments that the JNA, on the
24 other hand, started talking about their intention to prevent the breakup
25 of Yugoslavia
2 Q. Let me interrupt here just to clear the record. On page 73, line
3 15, it should be -- the gentleman indicated "non-Serbs," and that's what
4 the translator had indicated. He had said that they expelled non-Serbs,
5 not the Serbs, because the Serbs obviously wouldn't be expelling
7 A. On the 8th of October, 1991, Croatia's Parliament passed a
8 decision to sever all relations to Yugoslavia or by now the former
10 east. They held the town of Vukovar
11 practically flattening it in the process. They committed crimes of a
12 massive magnitude against the civilian population, thereby perpetrating
13 the first act of ethnic cleansing known to the modern world. In other
14 words, they expelled virtually all of the non-Serbs who used to reside in
15 that area.
16 By way of an answer to Your Honour's question, I'd be hard put to
17 say who was the first to use the actual term "aggression ." However,
18 keeping in mind the framework that I have just outlined, I do believe
19 that "aggression" is an appropriate term to describe what the Yugoslav
20 Army was busy doing at the time.
21 Q. Now, let me -- let me focus you, since we're on this issue of
22 aggression, we all know about -- and in fact they've prosecuted a couple
23 of cases here in this particular building, cases dealing with Dubrovnik.
24 First, could you tell us what happened in that area, where is it located
25 exactly in Croatia
2 A. I do believe I know a great deal about what was happening in and
3 around Dubrovnik
5 minority of the attacks came from Montenegro
6 the attacks were being launched from Bosnia and Herzegovina.
7 Q. Who was launching the attacks?
8 A. If I may just complete what I was saying. Some of the attacks
9 were coming from the sea. Seaborne attacks were being carried out by the
10 JNA navy. Attacks from other areas were being carried out by the JNA,
11 and as was suggested at the time, it was aided in this by certain Serb
12 and Montenegrin volunteers who were involved in this. There is no doubt
13 that the attacks were planned and organised as well as carried out by the
14 JNA. I believe this is also in evidence in one of the judgements passed
15 by this Tribunal.
16 May I just ask you to focus on the outline of --
17 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreters note, we can't hear the witness
18 properly because he's speaking too far away from the microphone.
19 MR. KARNAVAS: We may need to move the microphones a little bit
20 so you can be heard, and we need a pointer --
21 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for Mr. Karnavas, please.
22 MR. KARNAVAS: If we have a pointer, it might be useful.
23 I guess the record should reflect that the witness is pointing to
24 a map that has been used in the past in this courtroom by the Praljak
25 Defence team, which we appreciate them lending us the map for this
1 purpose, and I believe it's under 3D 03171.
2 Q. Okay. Now, you were pointing to that one area in the southern
3 part of Croatia
4 as Neum; is that correct?
5 A. That's right. Croatia
6 It is intersected at one point by Bosnia-Herzegovina territory. The
7 relevant section surrounds the town of Neum. The reason I'm bringing
8 this up is because based on everything I know about the negotiations, I
9 do believe there will be further need to discuss Neum at a later stage in
10 this trial.
11 Then there is the southern-most section of Croatia's territory, a
12 place known as Prevlaka, and that is where Croatia borders on Montenegro
13 May I say with a certain degree of satisfaction that today this
14 represents the border between two friendly states.
15 Nevertheless, at the time this was a starting point for an
16 aggression against Croatia
17 hand with attacks coming from Bosnia and Herzegovina's territory. This
18 part of Bosnia-Herzegovina or East Herzegovina, if you like, is mostly
19 populated by Serbs.
20 Q. You're pointing to the southern part --
21 A. Around the town of Trebinje
22 mostly populated by Serbs. There were, however, a number of Croat
23 villages in the area. I'm saying there were. I'm saying that because at
24 a very early stage, I believe in the autumn of 1991, the villages were in
25 fact taken by the JNA. Crimes against civilians were committed, and the
1 civilians living in the area were, as a result, expelled.
2 Bosnia and Herzegovina's leadership failed to react in any shape
3 or form. They did not denounce this as an act or aggression, nor did
4 they in fact pay any particular attention to this in any other way.
5 When the Serb forces eventually took this entire area in Eastern
7 take this narrow strip of land adjacent to the Croatian coastline,
8 thereby surrounding or encircling the city of Dubrovnik.
9 The Croatian forces, they were pitifully weak. I think we were
10 looking at a total of maybe around ten Croatian soldiers who managed to
11 hold on to Sroj, a hill behind Dubrovnik
12 However, in addition to their desire to seize this territory,
13 which to a large extent they were successful in doing - if I may be
14 permitted to comment here as a human being and as a professional
15 psychologist - they also had another desire which I found difficult to
16 understand but patently obvious, that other desire being to simply
17 destroy Dubrovnik
19 armed forces in Dubrovnik
20 targeted and damage was caused to the city's ancient walls. The degree
21 of destruction was unprecedented in the city's long history.
23 Nevertheless, the ring around Dubrovnik
24 months. Throughout those months, the only way to access Dubrovnik was by
25 sea, and this applied to food supplies, medical supplies, or anything
1 else, the situation being what it was.
2 And I think I'm now returning to the initial question. Anyone in
3 their right state of mind could only draw the following conclusion: The
4 only way to defend Dubrovnik
5 actually belonged to Bosnia and Herzegovina. There simply was no other
6 way to defend Dubrovnik
7 and more territory from being seized.
8 Q. Okay. Let me stop you here for a second because you began by
9 pointing to Neum, and, again, just to make sure that we fully appreciate
10 this because you also indicated that supplies -- the only way supplies
11 could get to -- in order for supplies to get to Dubrovnik, it had to go
12 through the sea, could you please tell us what significance Neum played?
13 A. In a military sense, the significance of Neum at the time was
14 tantamount to the significance of the entire remaining portion of the
15 hinterland that I'm pointing out [indicates]. Regardless of this, in a
16 political and purely metaphorical sense, Neum became one of the key
17 issues being discussed by Croatia
18 Q. And why?
19 A. As a result of this particular experience, the experience of how
20 vulnerable this particular section of Croatia was, simply because it was,
21 in purely geographic terms, isolated from the rest of Croatia and
22 therefore impossible to defend, in the eyes of all Croats and President
23 Tudjman, Neum became a strategic hotspot. On the other hand, Neum also
24 constitutes Bosnia
25 made it a hot political issue for them as well.
1 I think it is no exaggeration to say that hours and hours were
2 spent in friendly negotiations between Croatia
3 about Neum.
4 Q. Okay. Now, can you tell me a little bit about those
5 negotiations? What were those negotiations about?
6 A. At various points in time, depending on solutions envisaged by
7 the International Community for Bosnia and Herzegovina, the talks
8 developed in different ways. Invariably, however, whether the discussion
9 was about the division into three different republics or that envisaged
10 in the Vance-Stoltenberg Plan, Neum always ended up belonging to the part
11 of territory falling under Croatia
12 this internal organisation being proposed for Bosnia-Herzegovina, simply
13 because it happens to be in an area that is largely populated by Croats,
14 and this applies to the town of Neum
15 However, each of the Muslim Bosniak governments were at pains to
16 point out the significance that Neum held for them because it was their
17 only point of access to the Adriatic Sea, regardless of the fact that
18 this failed to effect the international status of Bosnia and Herzegovina
19 as a landlocked country, because this kind of access does not allow them
20 to access the Adriatic Sea, since Neum is simply unable -- it doesn't up
21 to the capacity to be used as a commercial port, or at least this is what
22 I have invariably been told by experts of all sorts of different
23 affiliations. Regardless of this, all of these successive governments in
1 Neum was often placed in the same context as the port of Ploce
2 which is the kind of port that can indeed be put to good use as a
3 commercial port. While the former Yugoslavia
4 and Herzegovina
5 There were several rounds of negotiations that I attended where
6 discussion focused on the possibility to allow Bosnia-Herzegovina access
7 to Ploce and at the same time to allow Croatia unimpeded transit through
8 the Neum area belonging to Bosnia and Herzegovina. Some of the options
9 and proposals were more imaginative and some less. Some proposed a
10 tunnel. Some proposed a major road crossing the area, based on the
11 German model, you might say. In symbolic and political terms, this is
12 still an issue for the Republic of Croatia
13 the fact that as we speak, Croatia
14 the mainland with the Peljesac Peninsula
15 this political issue.
16 Q. Was the issue of swapping land, say swapping Neum with Croatian
17 coastal land, ever discussed? And if so, in what context?
18 A. Yes, that, too, was one of the points being negotiated. This
19 wasn't something that was widely publicized, I believe. However, at one
20 point in time, for at least two months, negotiations went on between
22 involved was Neum, on the one hand, and the area around Prevleka and
23 Molunat on the other. I can't remember specifically who informed me
24 about this, who brought it up. It might have been Lord Owen or perhaps
25 someone else from the international conference. I made sure to inform
1 President Tudjman about these ideas that were being tossed about.
2 And then it was in Geneva
3 something that is based on statements that I saw from Mr. Sarinic and
4 also in Zagreb
5 words, we are looking at a stretch of the coast that is about 12
6 kilometres long in Neum's case, and the idea was awarding Bosnia
8 I believe -- not only do I believe. In fact, I actually heard
9 President Tudjman discuss this. His reasoning was primarily to link
10 these different parts of Croatia
11 both he and the international negotiators, regardless of the fact that
12 any statesman would find it difficult or impossible to accept such a
14 As I was saying, I think there were additional reasons for him.
15 He wanted to find a way around having a border with Montenegro. Back
16 then, Montenegro
17 then," as I say. The borders shared with Bosnia and Herzegovina
18 simply a given that is something that Croatia is doomed to, so whether it
19 was slightly longer or slightly shorter is not something that would have
20 changed anything essential about the nature of this problem.
21 This was further aggravated by the sad fact that the Croatian
22 population, because the area is populated essentially in its entirety by
23 Croats, had already been expelled and their houses had been destroyed
24 almost in their entirety.
25 I don't know that solution would have succeeded or not, but
1 another problem cropped up when representatives of the Serb entity in
2 Bosnia and Herzegovina, too, started making demands about an access to
3 the Adriatic Sea. It was at this point that the conference started
4 discussing issues about this and making plans about potentially having
5 two commercial ports, Prevlaka and Molunat, one purportedly to be used by
6 the Bosniaks, because they were the party that were adamant about it, and
7 the other by the Serbs, because they too were adamant about this.
8 However, sometime later, and it wasn't a particularly exceptional
9 circumstance that this peace plan changed as did a number of others, the
10 idea was dropped and to my knowledge never discussed at later stages.
11 If I may just add this, in no uncertain terms, but I think that
12 is what your question implied, to some degree. This is the only
13 situation that I'm aware of, the only situation that I witnessed, but
14 President Tudjman agreed to discuss possible swaps or anything at all
15 that might have affected the extent of Croatia's territory.
16 Likewise, I can say that several approaches were made by both
18 that a possible territorial swap would resolve the war in Croatia.
19 Nevertheless, and I must say this again, this was the only situation
20 where President Tudjman actually agreed to discuss anything like this.
21 Q. Okay. Before we leave --
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, a follow-up question,
23 please, because you were not very precise.
24 This basic question of access to the sea which is claimed by
25 Bosnia-Herzegovina, but as you said, also by the Serbian entity, what was
1 the final position of President Tudjman? Was he in favour of, against
2 it, or based on all the data would he have accepted a swap? What was his
3 basic position in respect of this demand, which might be quite a
4 fundamental one for any state?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I understand, Your Honour, and
6 I think that this is the way that President Tudjman understood it, in
7 fact. He agreed to discuss it. The talks were not brought to completion
8 because the idea -- the whole idea at that time was not heading towards
9 its implementation.
10 It was my impression, and I have to stress that this was an
11 impression, that had it been possible to achieve a stable and
12 long-lasting peace in Bosnia-Herzegovina at that time, that President
13 Tudjman would have accepted that solution in the face of any possible
14 political repercussions.
15 MR. KARNAVAS: Thank you, Mr. President.
16 Q. Now, before we leave that region, you told us that the
17 Bosnia-Herzegovina government did nothing to stop the JNA, did not
18 assist, did literally nothing. Could you tell us how much assistance,
19 that is, military assistance, combat assistance, did the UN provide - the
20 United Nations, that is - through its Security Council or whatever. What
21 kind of troops it provided to defend the territorial integrity of Croatia
22 in that southern part, and in particular, in protecting Dubrovnik which
23 has been characterized as the jewel of the Adriatic?
24 A. Unfortunately, and I really do mean that, unfortunately, and this
25 is something that I can really say with full responsibility, there was no
1 assistance whatsoever.
2 Q. All right. And before we leave this issue of aggression, because
3 we have the map, if you could tell us, and try to keep it within a time
4 frame, as well, when this aggression occurred against Croatia, how much,
5 if any, of the Croatian soil was occupied and by whom? And when I mean
6 "occupied," by foreign forces or foreign aggressors.
7 A. At least one-third of the Croatia
8 remained occupied, for all intents and purposes, until 1995.
9 Q. From what date, though? Tell us about what's starting -- and you
10 don't have to give us an exact, but approximately, so at least we have an
11 idea, because I'm going to ask you about this issue, where all this stuff
12 happened, because I'm going to be asking about this kind of
13 [Indiscernible] issue where all this stuff happened, and there's going to
14 be all sorts of discussions because the Prosecution's theory is that
15 during this period while Croatia
16 at the same time, you know, they're negotiating for other parts in
17 neighbouring countries, so could you tell us?
18 A. Well, Eastern Slavonia, after the fall of Vukovar, that was in
19 October 1991, remained occupied until 1998 when it was brought back under
20 the Croatian authority in the process of peaceful reintegration.
21 Q. We need to make a record. Of course, you're pointing at 3D
22 03171. That's the map. And you pointed at a part of Croatia. Could you
23 tell us exactly where you're pointing? Where is this area that you're
24 saying was occupied?
25 A. Well, that would be this area here [indicates]. Of course, I
1 can't now draw it in very accurately, but that would be the part that
2 we're talking about.
3 MR. KARNAVAS: It might be easier if we just put a map on the
4 ELMO and you can sort of pencil in or -- you should be able to do that.
5 Q. Now -- and while we're getting that ready, but I see -- if I look
6 at the map, I see that there's some arrows of other areas that -- if you
7 could listen to my question before you get that.
8 A. Mm-hmm.
9 Q. And when I see the big map, I see other arrows pointing
10 presumably at attacks from Bosnia-Herzegovina to Croatia, so could you --
11 could we first get -- cover that area, because what I'm interested in is
12 if there was a particular logic -- if there was a particular logic in
13 what the JNA was trying to do, that is, strategic logic, and why they
14 were targeting certain areas in Croatia
16 A. I think although other areas were under occupation, I think that
17 in this context we should look at three areas.
18 (In English) I wouldn't dare to draw because I am not so precise
19 in this, but I think that I am quite precise in what I would try to
21 Q. Okay, but you need to say, like, "east," "west," so that way we
22 have a record.
23 A. [In English] Certainly.
24 [Interpretation] So a part of Eastern Croatia was occupied by the
25 Yugoslav People's Army, primarily. A part of Croatia around Knin, in
1 this area [indicates], was occupied primarily by the Serbs, who used to
2 live -- or, rather, who lived in that area, but they received military
3 support from the Yugoslav Army, and in ideological terms, they relied on
5 remained occupied until the military and police operation launched by
7 The occupied territory shrunk at one point because at one point
8 it went all the way down to the sea. That was in late 1991 and early
9 1992. Croatia
10 to Split
11 boat because it was impossible to travel by land. It lasted a couple of
12 months, but the occupation of this area that was called the Serbian
13 Krajina or the Republic of Serbian Krajina, continued until August 1998
14 [as interpreted] --
15 THE INTERPRETER: 1995, interpreter's correction.
16 A. -- based on information that Croatia had at its disposal in
17 autumn of 1991, and this information was obtained from various sources,
18 including sources in the Yugoslav People's Army because some of the
19 officers had defected and joined the Croatian side, it was Serbia
20 to occupy Croatia
21 Karlobag. The point was to create the so-called "Greater Serbia." There
22 is a series of documents about that, and I think that it's quite
23 interesting and indicative to note here that some were published before
24 aggression started, before Yugoslavia
25 This plan fell through, in military terms, for a number of
1 reasons. I don't want to say that I am a military expert. By no means,
2 I'm not, but I was close enough to those events to say that there were
3 three key military reasons why this plan fell through.
4 First of all, the Yugoslav People's Army took more time than had
5 been planned to capture the town of Vukovar
6 for the Croatian forces to mount their defence.
7 Second, somewhere here [indicates] there is Sunja. It's
8 here [indicates]. If I'm not mistaken, it was a major railway junction,
9 and had the Serbian forces taken it, or, rather, had the Yugoslav Army,
10 had it taken it, it would have been able to hold this key railway line.
11 The Croatian forces managed to defend the town, and the commander of the
12 defence of the town of Sunija
13 historic fact. I actually met him there, or, rather, I had known him
14 before, but this is where we met on one occasion.
15 The third key reason is the fact that they failed to take this
16 area around Sibenik and they couldn't cut Croatia in two. Had they
17 managed to do that, Croatia
18 Bosnia-Herzegovina would have fallen later, and this crazy, insane idea
19 of a Greater Serbia, it would be possible to actually implement it.
20 But despite the fact that anyone with any common sense would see
21 this idea for what it was, an insane idea, it is obvious that they really
22 tried to implement this idea. And when they failed to implement this
23 idea, they opted for some alternative strategic options. One of those
24 options was to take the whole of the territory all the way down to the
25 Neretva River
2 When they decided against this initial idea to take this whole
3 area, even those who considered themselves to be more reasonable -
4 although we cannot really use this term - in the Serbian leadership were
5 considering the idea of giving up on holding the area around Knin and
6 this area here [indicates], and in return they wanted Croatia to cede
7 parts of Eastern Slavonia. I heard those proposals on several occasions
8 from third parties, and twice I actually was there when those proposals
9 were mooted.
10 Q. If I can interrupt you here for a second. Just to go back to the
11 Sunja situation because that was one of the three reasons, and as I
12 understand it, it's rather -- the example of that is rather indicative,
13 and you mentioned that it was General Praljak that was involved. Do you
14 feel knowledgeable enough to inform us exactly what it was -- or how that
15 was defended and how that played a key role as one of the three main
16 reasons why the JNA failed in their project?
17 A. Well, quite a few years have passed, and I will try to recollect.
18 We, as members of the Croatian Army, came to visit Sunja, and we
19 were able to see on what lines the defence was organised. The defence
20 was mounted by a small number of troops, if you compared the defence with
21 the attacking force, but the defence command and General Praljak -- well,
22 he was not the general at that time. He commanded the defence -- had
23 this idea that he implemented. He had trenches dug all around the town,
24 making it possible for his soldiers to move quickly from one position to
25 another. This is not something that I heard. This is something that I
1 actually saw. There was heating installed in some of the trenches. This
2 made it possible for the soldiers to man those positions for much longer
3 than classic military doctrine prescribed.
4 At that time, Mr. Praljak expounded his defence philosophy. He
5 said that, in fact, his defence philosophy was the exact opposite of the
6 JNA doctrine, and obviously it functioned in this town because Croatia
7 managed to defend this town.
8 Q. All right. Okay, thank you. Now, we only have ten minutes left,
9 so I want to touch just briefly on two other issues in the general sense
10 because tomorrow we will go through documents to tie all this together,
11 this and other matters. But have -- you are acquainted -- I could put it
12 in another fashion. Are you acquainted with the Friendship and
13 Cooperation Agreement? And if the answer is, "Yes," how so, very, very
14 briefly, and what it is, again very briefly?
15 A. Yes, I think that I am quite well acquainted with it because I
16 was personally involved in drafting the agreement. I was directly
17 involved in drafting the agreement, and I also worked on the preparations
18 for this agreement for months before the agreement was actually drafted
19 or signed.
20 Q. Who is the agreement with? And if you could give us a time, and
21 perhaps it might assist if you could tell us, was this before or after
22 Bosnia-Herzegovina declared its independence?
23 A. The agreement itself was in July 1992, so it was after, but
24 President Tudjman had instructed me, in a way, as early as the beginning
25 of April 1992. He explained to me why it was necessary to aim for such
1 an agreement and asked me to start working on the agreement. It took
2 several months to draft it. During this period, Bosnia-Herzegovina
3 achieved international recognition, and there were several meetings that
4 preceded the actual signing of the agreement.
5 Q. Okay. Now, we're going to get into that agreement when we get to
6 the Prosecution document -- 339 is their document. They're familiar with
7 it. We'll be discussing that and going into it in more detail, but, you
8 know, reflecting back, did that agreement, that Friendship and
9 Cooperation Agreement, had anything, in your opinion, had anything to do
10 with the events that were ongoing at the time, specifically the events
11 that you spoke of for the last hour or so, that is, the aggression and
12 the occupation of Croatia
13 THE INTERPRETER: Counsel is kindly asked to speak closer to the
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, it was directly linked to this
16 fact. President Tudjman was fully aware of the fact that without the
17 possibility to defend Croatia
19 that quite clearly because that was the first time that I travelled with
20 him to participate in negotiations. That was on the 1st of April, 1992
21 so already at that time, months before the agreement was signed, he was
22 explaining to me in the car that it was necessary to achieve an agreement
23 with Mr. Izetbegovic, regardless of the fact that it's not always easy.
24 I remember that he said that. He said it has to be done because Croatia
25 would not be able to defend itself otherwise, in this area here, but also
1 in other areas potentially. So that was one reason.
2 The second reason for this agreement, right from the beginning of
3 my working together with President Tudjman, this is something that I
4 always heard him say, and I think that it was also right from the
5 beginning of working together with the International Community, President
6 Tudjman always strove to find a solution where the Croatian people in
7 Bosnia-Herzegovina would be protected, and of course this agreement had
8 this dimension too.
9 Q. Okay. Now, just for the record purposes, you were pointing at
10 the map, which is 3D 03171. I believe you were pointing at the southern
11 part of Croatia
12 that -- earlier, when you said that Tudjman wanted to make sure that
15 A. Yes, primarily, because as you can see here on this map, in other
16 areas, too, it was easier to defend the Croatian territory if you didn't
17 have the Serbian forces manning positions on this side. But in military
18 theory and in practice, as it turned out, it was possible to do that from
19 the Croatian side, too. The only way to liberate Dubrovnik, according to
20 the doctrine, would be if Croatia
21 force, and Croatia
22 land would involve the forces going to the territory of another state,
23 and otherwise it would have been impossible because even a small force
24 would be able to hold Dubrovnik
25 Q. Okay. The last general area, and we're going to speak about this
1 quite a bit, but we have five minutes, is the issue of confederation, and
2 I would appreciate it if you would tell us, first of all, have you ever
3 heard of that term, in what context was it used, what was it meant? And
4 specifically we're speaking about if President Tudjman ever used that
5 term because we have some documents. It's come up. It's cropped up
6 quite a bit in certain documents, but could you tell us, what was your
7 understanding, if any, of this particular term?
8 A. As a statement and -- as a statement and as the presidents of the
9 republic, President Tudjman based his work on three principles: The
10 principle of creation, survival, and recognition of Croatia within its
11 existing borders. I think that was the first basic principle. The
12 second principle was to protect the Croatian people -- the Croatian
13 ethnic community in Bosnia and Herzegovina but within the territory of
14 Bosnia and Herzegovina. And the third principle was to stop the war.
15 I think it is possible to prove that at every point, these were
16 the three guiding principles. The confederation cropped up on several
17 occasions, and after all, after the Washington Agreement and the Dayton
18 Agreement, confederation was spoken about as a future fait accompli. But
19 I was in a position to work on this model of confederation at earlier
21 I think that President Tudjman liked the confederation model
22 because it made it possible to implement all three principles: The
23 Croatian territory would not be under any threat; Croats within the
24 borders of Bosnia-Herzegovina would enjoy an adequate status; and it was
25 possible to stop the war with this option.
1 In the late summer of 1993, in late August and early September,
2 President Tudjman instructed me to embark on talks with the
3 representatives of Bosnia and Herzegovina about the political
4 reproachment and also the cessation of any hostilities between Muslims,
5 Bosniaks, and Croats in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Following those
6 instructions, I talked with Haris Silajdzic, and we agreed on a meeting
7 where we were to discuss various ideas that might result in this. I set
8 up a meeting with him with quite a specific date in September of 1993 in
10 this meeting by Mr. Komsic.
11 I told President Tudjman about that, and he asked me what would
12 Mr. Komsic's capacity be. I didn't know that, but President Tudjman
13 said, "Fine, accept the meeting." And then having thought about it a bit
14 later, he called me and said that I would be accompanied by Ambassador
15 Biscevic at that meeting. At that time, Ambassador Biscevic I believe
16 was the Croatian ambassador to Turkey
17 with him in the foreign ministry. Mr. Biscevic travelled to Geneva
18 four of us met in the president's hotel in Geneva, and based on our
19 talks, we drafted an agreement, a written agreement between Tudjman and
20 Izetbegovic, and I think it was signed on the 15th of September, 1993,
21 but I may be wrong on that. I'm just giving you this date off the top of
22 my head.
23 And if I can now go back to confederation --
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] No, we have to stop. It's
25 7.00 p.m.
1 we have to stop.
2 Witness, just a few reminders. You are under oath, so you are a
3 witness of justice. In other words, you're not allowed to have any
4 contacts with Defence, with Mr. Prlic's Defence, or with the other
5 accused or Defence teams, or the Prosecution, or of course with the
7 We shall reconvene tomorrow at 2.15 for the end of the
8 examination-in-chief. I think you've used about an hour, Mr. Karnavas,
9 but we'll know that more exactly from the Registrar. So we'll have three
10 and a half to four
11 Good evening to all of you.
12 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 7.04 p.m.
13 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 7th day
14 of May, 2008, at 2.15 p.m.