Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 2514

1 Tuesday, 22 January 2008

2 [Open session]

3 [The witness entered court]

4 --- Upon commencing at 2.19 p.m.

5 [The accused entered court].

6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Registrar, kindly call the

7 case, please.

8 THE REGISTRAR: Good afternoon, Your Honours. This is case number

9 IT-03-67-T, The Prosecutor versus Vojislav Seselj.

10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Registrar.

11 Very well. Today is the 22nd of January, 2008. My greetings to

12 Ms. Dahl, to Mr. Seselj, to the witness and to all the people helping us.

13 Before moving for a few moments to private session, let me say

14 this: Today we are in Courtroom II, a rather small courtroom where you

15 can't have many people in the public gallery since all the other

16 courtrooms are taken up by trials with multiple accused. There is indeed

17 a trial that is finishing. Therefore, we were given this courtroom,

18 Courtroom II, and I believe we're going to stay here tomorrow as well

19 because of the other hearings.

20 This being said, since we are in Courtroom II there is a problem

21 for Mr. Seselj's fax machine because he is an expecting a fax and the

22 machine had been set up for the purposes of Courtroom I. As for Courtroom

23 II, they're drilling through walls, installing cables, but it is not going

24 to be ready before Thursday.

25 So I don't know, Mr. Seselj. Are you going to be sent any faxes

Page 2515

1 today? If so, we'll have to find a solution. Either we'll have to go and

2 get them or you yourself will have to get them yourself. I have no

3 ready-made answer. I know you wanted to say something about this.

4 You have the floor.

5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. President, well, I avail myself

6 of this opportunity since your advisor from the registry has already

7 established contact with my legal advisor and he refused to send any

8 documents by fax without my consent. To the fax of the registry, that

9 is. On this occasion, I address my legal advisors telling them to send

10 these documents that were supposed to send to me straight away to the

11 registry fax. They're going to see this on the Internet now and I assume

12 that by the next break they will have sent these documents.

13 Could you please instruct the Mr. Doraiswamy to receive this on my

14 behalf. I think that that is the easiest way of resolving the matter.

15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Mr. Registrar, the

16 legal advisors of Mr. Seselj are going to sent documents and they'll have

17 to be picked up and handed over to Mr. Seselj. Good.

18 This is going to be easy to solve.

19 Let's move to private session for a few moments, please, Madam

20 Usher.

21 [Private session]

22 (redacted)

23 (redacted)

24 (redacted)

25 (redacted)

Page 2516











11 Pages 2516-2518 redacted. Private session















Page 2519

1 [Open session]

2 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, we're in open session.

3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Ms. Dahl.

4 MS. DAHL: Thank you, Your Honour.


6 Examination by Ms. Dahl: [Continued]

7 Q. Good afternoon, Mr. Stoparic. Did you participate in military

8 operations in Nevesinje in 1992?

9 A. I called this Nevesinje, not in the town of Nevesinje itself but

10 in the surrounding area, below Mount Velez, yes.

11 Q. Were you asked to gather volunteers to participate in military

12 operations there?

13 A. I don't understand your question. In order to clarify the matter

14 for you, when I took part in the operations in the area of Mount Velez,

15 Podvelezje, I spent a day in Nevesinje in order to get there. My base was

16 at Grab, as it is called. It is a bit above Trebinje, and that is where

17 we were asked to go out and help in the operations that were away, out of

18 Grab. We -- in Grab we were under the command jurisdiction of another

19 brigade but we were sent to help out another brigade. I think it was the

20 Nevesinje Brigade. If that's what you meant by whether we were asked to

21 come in and help as volunteers, then yes.

22 Q. In your unit, were there volunteers organised by the Radical

23 Party?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. Who was the commander of the unit?

Page 2520

1 A. The commander was Vojvoda Vakic, from Nis.

2 Q. Can you estimate approximately how many Radical Party volunteers

3 were under the command of Mr. Vakic?

4 A. The number varied. Some people went home and then new people

5 would be brought in, but I don't know exactly. I think it was more than

6 100, but I cannot say. Please don't take my word for it. I don't know

7 exactly.

8 Q. Can you tell me what other units were present in that area that

9 were organised by the Radical Party?

10 A. Well, in that area, we were the only one, as far as I know.

11 Somewhere else there was another unit too, but it was somewhere else. We

12 did not have contact with them. I think Ljuba Ivanovic commanded that

13 unit. I'm not absolutely sure of this. My understanding was while we

14 were there that we were quite sufficient in that area. There were units

15 in Trebinje itself, units of the Serb volunteer guard, or whatever they

16 were called, organised by the SPO. And, of course the regular army, yes.

17 Now, whether there was some other volunteer units there, probably,

18 but I don't know about them.

19 Q. During this period, can you tell me whether Muslims were expelled

20 from the area or the villages around Nevesinje?

21 A. Yes, yes. They were leaving. They were leaving, at any rate.

22 There were individual cases of repression or whatever we call it. I think

23 I've already told you that over there, I never experienced everything in

24 an organised fashion, namely that somebody would issue a command saying go

25 to a particular village and expel the Muslim population, but they were in

Page 2521

1 jeopardy due to the fact that they did not have communications with the

2 BiH army. One or two or three villages were within the Serbian enclave.

3 I personally was in a few of these villages, in passing, in a car.

4 Q. Do you know whether volunteers under the command of Vakic

5 participated in expulsions of Muslims from these villages?

6 A. Yes, some went, but as I already said, on their on bat.

7 Q. Can you describe for me how the expulsions took place?

8 A. I was not a direct participant in such events. But what I saw and

9 what was a logical conclusion on my part was, was that two or three men

10 would simply get into a car, go to a village, stop by a house, they would

11 be offered coffee. Even if they wouldn't do a thing, that itself would

12 intimidate the Muslims. Over there you could usually see only women and

13 children and some elderly people. The younger ones, in my opinion, were

14 either hiding somewhere in the woods in the area or in a way they had

15 joined the BH army in some way and were active in its activities somehow.

16 I don't know though. Once, I even saw one or two houses on fire there.

17 My assumption is that one of us, the Serbs, had set the houses on fire,

18 but I cannot really point a finger at anyone.

19 Q. Were women or elderly persons cursed or beaten?

20 A. I have already told you that I personally did not take part in any

21 such thing, but quite frankly, had I participated in something like that

22 myself, perhaps I would have resorted to. Well, I don't know.

23 By the very fact that territorially, they were not linked up with

24 the territories that were under the control of the Muslim army, the BH

25 army, they were already frightened enough. I allow for that possibility,

Page 2522

1 that perhaps there was some physical mistreatment too.

2 Q. Are you saying with your testimony that the civilians were so

3 frightened that they would flee simply upon the arrival of Serb forces

4 such as the volunteers?

5 A. Well, you see, they cannot know at every point in time who is a

6 volunteer and who is a member of the army of Republika Srpska or the army

7 of Republika Srpska or anything. So many were members of the army of

8 Republika Srpska and they wore a kokarda, if that is a Chetnik symbol, or

9 I don't know. There would be some other small element that would be

10 reminiscent of volunteers. However, the local people could make a

11 distinction between volunteers and local members of the army by their

12 accents. It's the same language, but we who come from Serbia have a

13 different accent. They can recognise whether they were born there or

14 whether we had come from Serbia.

15 I am sorry. I have already forgotten by now. Now, what was your

16 question; were they frightened when they would come in. It doesn't matter

17 what kind of army goes through the village. I went through a few Muslim

18 villages several times, or a few hamlets, rather. It was visible. Men

19 would usually be running from the yards and hiding somewhere behind the

20 walls. However, we would see that, we would registry that and nothing.

21 We'd just go by. No one opened fire. Although I believe that sometimes

22 some people did open fire at these patrols with hunting guns or something

23 like that. However, I personally did not experience any such thing, so I

24 cannot tell you about it in any greater detail.

25 Q. Can you describe the activities of Captain Jovanovic's volunteer

Page 2523

1 unit?

2 A. I don't know Captain Jovanovic.

3 Q. Do you know what his unit was doing in the area?

4 A. I'm telling you, I don't know Captain Jovanovic. Oh, you mean

5 Ivanovic?

6 Q. I'm sorry. Ivanovic.

7 A. If we're talking about the same terrain, I was with him in the

8 same unit once but that's not the area where I was together with him. Now

9 we're talking about Podvelezje, Nevesinje. I don't know what his

10 activities were. Like ours, I assume, protecting the positions.

11 Now what they did when there was no active combat, I don't know.

12 Q. I'm asking you if you know what they were doing during the active

13 combat.

14 A. The same thing we were doing, taking part in combat. I'm not

15 quite sure that I have understood you right, I mean, your question.

16 Q. Were you aware of local people who joined the unit in which you

17 were participating in?

18 A. That was customary. When we would come to a particular terrain,

19 we would be joined by the local people. Not that many of them because,

20 after all, they had military service there with the local army, the army

21 of Republika Srpska. But a certain number would always join us. We

22 needed them in a way, because, after all, these are people who are

23 familiar with the area. We had just come there. We were not familiar

24 with the area. So this had a practical purpose, too, the fact that we

25 would take in a few people precisely from that area.

Page 2524

1 (redacted)

2 (redacted)

3 (redacted)

4 (redacted)

5 (redacted)

6 (redacted)

7 (redacted). As a matter of fact, I noticed, now, what

8 should I call them? His countrymen in a way. I mean the people from that

9 area stood in awe of him in a way. He is a big man. I think that he had

10 his own truck before the war and I think that he was a driver who had his

11 private business. So he is this big man. People out there were saying --

12 I can't remember what it was that he himself said, but there was a certain

13 dose of respect vis-a-vis him.

14 Q. Did you ever brag to you that he had committed crimes against

15 civilians in the area of Nevesinje?

16 A. Well, as for bragging, that's what fighters are prone to do. I

17 mean, they brag a lot. Because in that way, they think that they are

18 scoring points in a particular unit or in the general setting that they

19 were in. During the war that was quite popular.

20 I cannot remember exactly now. I know that he was saying

21 something, but I cannot recall this very instant. I cannot remember a

22 particular detail right now. It is very hard to remember all of these

23 things too. Well, what he said, he did say. At any rate I'm going to

24 convey this to you as, well, yes, there was knowledge to the effect that

25 he had done something there, and it is not only that I had this knowledge

Page 2525

1 but the local people had this knowledge too. As a matter of fact, people

2 did know ...

3 Q. Are you aware of any SRS volunteers punished for mistreatment

4 against civilians in this area?

5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Objection. Mr. President, this is

6 an incorrect question. The question wasn't asked first whether a

7 volunteer of the Serbian Radical Party had committed any war crime, first

8 of all, so the Prosecutor can't imply that some crimes actually occurred

9 and were perpetrated by the volunteers and then ask whether they were

10 punished. Let's hear from the witness whether the volunteers of the

11 Serbian Radical Party to the best of his knowledge had committed any crime

12 in the first place.

13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Ms. Dahl, you just skipped one

14 step before putting that question. Before that, you have to identify the

15 authors crimes, the perpetrators, so you have to go step by step.

16 MS. DAHL:

17 Q. Mr. Stoparic, are you aware of any SRS volunteers who committed

18 crimes against civilians in the area of Nevesinje?

19 A. Ms. Dahl, you're asking me in open session to name names. I have

20 already done that when we spoke about Vukovar for people that I had heard

21 about or learnt that they had done something. And we were just speaking

22 about a man, a particular man and how I know whether he did something or

23 not. Now --

24 MS. DAHL: Your Honour, let's go into private session so that

25 Mr. Stoparic can identify names that he does not wish to mention in open

Page 2526

1 session.

2 [Private session]

3 (redacted)

4 (redacted)

5 (redacted)

6 (redacted)

7 (redacted)

8 (redacted)

9 (redacted)

10 (redacted)

11 (redacted)

12 (redacted)

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14 (redacted)

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16 (redacted)

17 (redacted)

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19 (redacted)

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22 (redacted)

23 (redacted)

24 (redacted)

25 (redacted)

Page 2527











11 Page 2527-2536 redacted. Private session















Page 2537

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3 (redacted)

4 (redacted)

5 (redacted)

6 (redacted)

7 (redacted)

8 (redacted)

9 (redacted)

10 (redacted)

11 (redacted)

12 (redacted)

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14 (redacted)

15 (redacted)

16 (redacted)

17 [Open session]

18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Ms. Dahl, the floor is yours.

19 MS. DAHL: Thank you, Your Honour.

20 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please, Ms. Dahl.

21 MS. DAHL: Let me -- thank you, Your Honour.

22 Q. Let me ask Mr. Stoparic to look at exhibit number 1885; that's the

23 65 ter number. It's at tab 40 of the Court binders.

24 Mr. Stoparic, would you prefer a paper copy?

25 A. [In English] Yeah.

Page 2538

1 MS. DAHL: May I ask the registrar to give the witness a paper

2 copy. I'm handing 65 ter exhibit 1885 to the witness.

3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Ms. Dahl, to save time and help

4 us not to have to read the whole document, could you please summarize this

5 document, saying, in this report coming from the command brigade -- coming

6 from Commander Gusic in date of August 3rd, 1993. This is what has been

7 said. And then will you ask the question. This is the technique that is

8 traditionally used, and this morning, while reading the -- Mr. Seselj's

9 examination by Mr. Milosevic, Judge Robinson thought that this was a bit

10 lengthy and asked the parties to proceed is such a manner.

11 So just sum up quickly the document and ask the position of the

12 witness, please.

13 MS. DAHL: Your Honour, this appears to be a report by Colonel

14 Gusic, commander of the Nevesinje Brigade, signed also by a Captain

15 Milenko, also known as Uco, commander of Dragi Lazarevic [phoen] regarding

16 the report of soldiers of this unit killed or wounded in Podvelezje. It's

17 a report directed to the Serbian Chetnik Movement, Serbian volunteer

18 detachment, Belgrade. It is dated 3 August 1993 from Nevesinje and

19 reports on members of the detachment from Trebinje in June 1992,

20 specifically June 25.

21 Q. Mr. Stoparic, can you confirm whether this appears to be as

22 described?

23 A. When you show me this document that was the first time that I saw

24 it. But I have no reason to doubt that this is an original document. It

25 is quite customary, in other words, for reports to be sent on casualties

Page 2539

1 in the way in which people got killed and according to our law, our

2 combatants, when they seek their disability pensions in Serbia, they need

3 to have a description of the event to base their applications on. What

4 they also require is a stamp of the military post office, of the military

5 garrison which is involved. It cannot be the stamp of the Radical Party.

6 It has to be the military garrison's stamp to validate the application,

7 and this is the way it was done in this particular report, mentioning the

8 families of the killed, and my name is also indicated in this report in

9 that context.

10 MS. DAHL: May I ask that the document be marked for

11 identification.

12 THE REGISTRAR: That will be MFI P28.

13 MS. DAHL: And if I can turn to exhibit 2118 --

14 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Wait.

15 MS. DAHL: -- which is at tab number 40.

16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] One moment, Ms. Dahl.

17 What did you want to say about this document, Mr. Seselj?

18 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the accused, please.

19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. President, this document is from

20 a time when Mr. Stoparic had no longer been in Herzegovina, was no longer

21 in Herzegovina. According to his statement at the beginning of the

22 examination-in-chief at that time he should have been in the area of

23 Brcko. We are talking about the 3rd of September, 1993. At that time,

24 Mr. Stoparic was not there, not at that place. He was there in 1992, as

25 we heard from his statement and this is over a year later. So that this

Page 2540

1 is a report which was obviously made in order to regulate the combatants'

2 status questions. This is it not a document from the time about which

3 Mr. Stoparic is giving his testimony.

4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, you yourself

5 conducted investigation committee, so you are an expert when it comes to

6 documents.

7 If you read this one properly, which I doubt somehow, you would

8 have realised that the name of the witness is to be found in this

9 document. He is indicated as being having been wounded and hospitalised,

10 and this won't have escaped you. The witness said here that at some point

11 he was wounded, injured, so there is a direct link between the document

12 and this witness who was injured. The very title of this document is

13 report on soldiers of this unit killed or wounded in Podvelezje.

14 So let's not waste time, Mr. Seselj.

15 Please proceed, Ms. Dahl.

16 MS. DAHL: If I may, Your Honour, the next document is 65 ter

17 Exhibit 2118. It's the addendum or addition to the report, and if I may

18 have the paper copy tendered to the witness. You will find it at binder

19 tab 42 and I will summarize briefly.

20 It is, again, a -- marked as an addition to the report compiled by

21 the author of the document we just discussed submitted to the Serbia

22 Chetnik Movement, Serbian Volunteer Detachment, it is dated Nevesinje, 19

23 May 1995 entitled addition to the report on the troops from this

24 detachment killed and wounded in Podvelezje. It describes combat

25 activities on 26 June 1992, discusses who was wounded, including

Page 2541

1 Mr. Stoparic, and it is signed by commander Lieutenant-Colonel Zoran

2 Perkovic. The document is dated 1995.

3 I'd request that it be marked for identification and I would ask

4 Mr. Stoparic if the document appears to be as I've described it.

5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Did you understand the

6 question? Have you seen this document, Mr. Stoparic? We can see your

7 name in it, under number 1.

8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, that is precisely that. In

9 addition to the report, and that is what it says, on combatants killed and

10 wounded. I am there in the first place. I don't know why, perhaps

11 because I was deputy commander. Although, Your Honours, there is a

12 mistake in respect of my birth date, 17th of January, 1958. It should be

13 17th of January, 1960, in fact.

14 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. This is noted.

15 Mr. Registrar, a number, please.

16 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, MFI P29.

17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Ms. Dahl.

18 MS. DAHL:

19 Q. Mr. Stoparic --

20 A. I'm sorry. Actually, I said 1968, 17th -- the 17th of January,

21 1968. Everything else is correct here except the year.

22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] This document described your

23 situation as a wounded soldier. Why was it sent to a political party?

24 I'm trying to understand.

25 Do you have an explanation for that or not? Indeed, if you were

Page 2542

1 wounded, you were entitled to a military disability pension, unless the

2 political party would also give you financial support. Do you have an

3 explanation for that?

4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know whether the political

5 party gave any financial assistance. They probably endeavoured to assist

6 the families of any killed or wounded combatants in the sense of providing

7 information as to what they should do. Possibly also in financial terms.

8 But it is quite possible that they have precisely such data in their

9 archives which they can gain access to and use whenever they are

10 necessary.

11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I also notice, because, you

12 know, nothing escapes me, I also noticed in this document that this

13 document was also addressed to the 8th Motorised Brigade, apparently, of

14 Bosnia and Herzegovina. It seems to be the brigade that was literally in

15 charge of the unit that you were in. Is that so? Is this an accurate

16 description of the situation?

17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.

18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.

19 Let's move on.

20 MS. DAHL: Let me next play a video-clip. It's 65 ter number

21 6066. And it is an interview of Mr. Seselj conducted by Laura Silber in

22 March 1995 in which he is reflecting on activities during the war.

23 Q. Mr. Stoparic, what I'm going to ask you to do is please listen to

24 what Mr. Seselj says and then tell me whether or not your understanding of

25 the operations he describes is consistent with what Mr. Seselj says.

Page 2543

1 MS. DAHL: This is clip B, and it will be a compilation of several

2 clips that I will play in succession and ask Mr. Stoparic to comment on

3 them.

4 [Videotape played]

5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Could the interpreters working

6 from Serbian and working into English or French, could they translate so

7 that we can check the translation that we see on the bottom part. In the

8 future, whenever we have a video clip with Mr. Seselj or anybody else

9 speaking Serbian, I'm requesting, demanding from the interpreters that

10 they translate and not just to make do with what can be found on that

11 strip in English, because sometimes that can cause problems.

12 We're going to start again, and I'm demanding from the

13 interpreters that they interpret.

14 THE INTERPRETER: [Previous translation continues]...

15 Interpretation. It is even too fast to read out the subtitles, let alone

16 interpret it into French. Thank you.

17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I'm asking the interpreters to

18 listen to what Mr. Seselj says and to give a live interpretation.

19 The interpreters are telling me that it is too fast, but we're

20 going to try, all the same.

21 Let's start again.

22 [Videotape played]

23 "THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] In 1990, we were not acquiring

24 weapons, we were only enlisting volunteers and occasionally when necessary

25 from time to time we would send them to the front but those were very

Page 2544

1 small groups. In 1991 we began organizing volunteers on a larger scale

2 and sending them to already established front lines, particularly to

3 eastern Slavonia here in the east of the Republic of Serbia Krajina. Our

4 volunteers gave a very good account of this, especially in the battle in

5 Borovo Selo which took place on the 2nd of May 1991 when they defeated

6 stronger Croatian forces, Croatian police and para police forces. We were

7 getting weapons from Milosevic's police from the then -- first from the

8 then minister of internal affairs Radmilo Bogdanovic and when he was

9 replaced from his successor. We were also getting all the weapons from

10 the warehouse of the Territorial Defence. They were old American Thompson

11 guns which had been withdrawn from use long time ago. There were also M48

12 guns, the so-called Tandzare guns. Therefore it was pretty much

13 everything out of date that the army had already stopped using a long time

14 ago and was kept somewhere in the warehouses of the Territorial Defence.

15 They felt sorry to destroy all, so they just gave them to us, but it was

16 with those weapons that we" --

17 THE INTERPRETER: And the interpreter could not catch the end of

18 this statement.

19 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Ms. Dahl, your

20 question, please. I remind you that you have already used five hours and

21 20 minutes, so you are 20 minutes beyond the time you were given

22 initially. You have to complete this, because if we are too generous, we

23 may run into problems.

24 So please complete your examination-in-chief. But put your last

25 questions first.

Page 2545


2 Q. Mr. Stoparic, with regard to the weapons, the source of weapons in

3 cooperation with Mr. Milosevic identified by Mr. Seselj, is that congruent

4 with your understanding?

5 A. I have no reason whatsoever to doubt this, what Mr. Seselj says.

6 I think that he is quite right.

7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, we've just heard

8 Mr. Seselj, who said this, I'll be very slow because every word he says in

9 this interview may prove relevant later on.

10 In the beginning, in early 1990s they dispatched some volunteers

11 and then in 1991 there was a larger number of volunteers who were sent.

12 That's what he said. But that's not my question.

13 However, he addresses another problem, which is the arming of the

14 volunteers and this is what he said. He said the volunteers received

15 weapons from Milosevic's police. He gives the name of minister Bogdanovic

16 and describes the quality, the poor quality of weapons. They're obsolete

17 Thompson, M48, they're really obsolete.

18 My question upon listening to him in the interview is whether the

19 weapons given to the volunteers were given to them just before the

20 volunteers were taken over by the JNA, because I believed that all of the

21 volunteers were gathered in this, and this is from memory, in Potok, in a

22 location called Potok and when the volunteers were gathered, were they

23 given their weapons by the Radical party, to go then to the collection

24 point, to be sent to the units, or did the volunteers go to a collection

25 point and they were later given their weapons, issued their weapons.

Page 2546

1 Can you tell us more about it? So I mention all the

2 possibilities.

3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] To the best of my knowledge, which

4 is not a lot, I don't know much about 1990, but what Mr. Seselj is saying

5 about the outdated weapons and the various Thompson and outdated Tandzare

6 guns, this is absolutely true. It is true that in the beginning we were

7 supplied in this way. That is just my opinion and I cannot give you any

8 proof. It was initially organised by the police, that is the information

9 which I have, part of those weapons actually ended up in the arms of the

10 Serbs who lived in Croatia. Initially it was distributed, it was

11 precisely this weaponry that was distributed to the party members of the

12 SDS. This is the way in which it was done and I have no reason to doubt

13 that this is the way in which it took place at that point in time, as

14 Mr. Seselj said. Later, when the army got more modern weaponry, this was

15 organised in another fashion. It was by the Yugoslav Peoples' Army, the

16 Yugoslav Peoples' Army provided every individual with better resources.

17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Objection.

18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] [Previous translation

19 continues] ... The floor but let's be on the same wavelength and make sure

20 we understand each other.

21 You just said that the police would issue weapons. Now listening

22 to you, I started imagining the fact that the police would issue weapons

23 to citizens who were either reservists or would later become volunteers.

24 These people, these individuals would then later go to collection points

25 to be then assigned to JNA units. That's one possibility.

Page 2547

1 There is another one. When there were volunteers, and said to the

2 political party they were members of what their intentions were, did that

3 political party that had received weapons from the police, did that body

4 issue weapons to the volunteers.

5 Third possibility, you have volunteers who leave their homes

6 without any weapons, did they go to collection points where weapons were

7 brought to them by members of the political party or by the JNA or other

8 individuals.

9 So as far as you know, which would be the case that would apply

10 here?

11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I have very scant knowledge about

12 that, precisely owing to the fact that as long as the police was involved,

13 especially in the early periods of 1991, that was top secret to us. We

14 had no way of knowing whom they were arming and why they were arming

15 them. It is a fact that the weapons came from the police depot and many

16 times the army actually denied that they had such weapons in their

17 warehouses. Everything was conducted under a top secret regime.

18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] [Previous translation

19 continues] ... Able to answer, but let's take your personal situation.

20 When you became a volunteer, when were you issued a weapon and who was it

21 issued by?

22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I got weapons in the temporary

23 barracks that had been set up in Sid at the time. I joined as a volunteer

24 member of the Territorial Defence of Slavonia Baranja and Western Srem and

25 I was given the weapon by the JNA.

Page 2548

1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] As far as you were concerned,

2 you are telling us that you were issued a weapon by the JNA in this

3 temporary barracks, and what kind of weapon was it?

4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I remember exactly, lorry drove up

5 to the barracks. We were lined up outside the barracks. We had already

6 set up a number of platoons and squads and we all knew that we would be

7 attacking the village of Tovarnik. That's when the lorry drove up and the

8 officers or the non-commissioned officers of the Yugoslav Peoples' Army

9 opened up crates with weapons. We cleaned it, we degreased the weaponry

10 and checked it for good order and that was all. Probably some records

11 were also kept or some minutes were kept on that procedure.

12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] What weapon did you get, an

13 M48, a Kalashnikov or a Thompson, what did you get?

14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I was given an M70 gun, rifle, which

15 you call a Kalashnikov.

16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Did you want to -- what did you

17 want to say exactly?

18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I'm not going to insist on this

19 adamantly, but I should like to draw your attention to the fact that the

20 question of relevance arises here. The indictment in all practice is not

21 all that precise because the alleged joint criminal enterprise started

22 prior to the 1st of August, 1991 according to it, so that my participation

23 according to it lasts until September 1993, whereas these are events which

24 took place much earlier. When we talk about 1992 -- 1990, we were

25 persecuted in Serbia because of sending volunteers and this is a time

Page 2549

1 which deals with the period prior to the JNA's clashing with the Croatian

2 paramilitary forces. This is as far as the indictment is concerned, but I

3 don't insist very much on this.

4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj pointed out that

5 1990 is outside the time-frame of the indictment and he fails to see any

6 relevance to this topic.

7 But maybe we can move on to something else.

8 MS. DAHL: Yes, Your Honour, there is another video-clip regarding

9 Mr. Seselj's assertions about the source of his weapons.

10 So let's play clip E, which is the next clip in 65 ter number

11 6666, which is a composite.

12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Again I'm telling the

13 interpreters to do what they did, is to interpret what can they can hear.

14 "THE INTERPRETER: [Voiceover] That was all with Milosevic's

15 knowledge, there is no doubt there, and a few from the police at the time

16 with whom we established cooperation, were Radmilo Bogdanovic, Mihalj

17 Kertes, and others. Franko Simatovic called Frenki and so on, who was the

18 commander of the Red Berets later and so on. Then from the General Staff

19 we mostly worked with General Domazetovic, who was at the time the deputy

20 chief of the General Staff and the head of the personnel administration,

21 if I remember correctly, but we also had contacts with lower ranking

22 officers and so on. It all depended on the need and the situation. Our

23 volunteers would come to Belgrade to the Bubanj Potok barracks, and there

24 they would put on uniforms, they would be issued with weapons and busses

25 and from there they would go to where they were needed. And they were

Page 2550

1 under the command of the Yugoslav Peoples' Army as soon as Yugoslav

2 Peoples' Army got involved in the conflicts."

3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. For the transcript,

4 we could not hear the journalist's question very well. But we were able

5 to here Mr. Seselj's answer perfectly.

6 Ms. Dahl.


8 Q. Were there members of the Radical party staff present at the

9 distribution of weapons at Bubanj Potok?

10 A. I remember once in the Bubanj Potok barracks we were visited by

11 Zoran Drazilovic. He even issued with kokades there, but whether he was

12 literally there where the weaponry was being distributed, that I cannot

13 claim with certainty. I don't know why he would have been there. That is

14 the obligation of some of the officers who were present there but he did

15 come to visit us and he would stay there for a while. I was there twice.

16 I was there for one week for a short training course and then we were sent

17 to the field from there to the airport and then to the field.

18 Q. To your knowledge, was Ljubisa Petkovic ever present when weapons

19 were being distributed?

20 A. I don't know that. I cannot say anything about that.

21 Q. Are you aware of whether or not any weapons were stored by Radical

22 Party members in Sid to be distributed?

23 A. I don't know whether members of the Radical Party kept it in Sid.

24 What I do know is that at a certain point in time a small amount of

25 weaponry was kept in the garage of Milenko Petrovic but it was forwarded

Page 2551

1 on. But it was not organised by the Radical Party. It was organised by

2 the MUP of Serbia.

3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, you mentioned a small

4 detail that may not be that relevant but is relevant to me.

5 You said that you were given a kokade. I suppose that's the

6 kokade representing the political party; is that right.

7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] We already referred to kokades. A

8 kokade is a symbol hailing from the Second World War, generally a symbol

9 of the Serbian army which is worn on the cap. There are different

10 variants and there are different designers of the kokade. We were all

11 issued with one at the time by Zoran Drazilovic. That was in the Bubanj

12 Potok barracks, and I remember well that he said, lads, don't put it on

13 now. After you leave you can put it on your caps and your heads but as

14 long as we're here we have to respect our host and we have to wear his

15 emblems and not any different ones.

16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Now the official emblem of the

17 JNA, wasn't it this five-point star?

18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, it should have been, but very

19 quickly, I believe at the very outset of the war this changed. This was

20 for a very short period, but officially, yes, that was the emblem of the

21 JNA, and when I served the regular army, it was the five-pointed star.

22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] When you became a volunteer and

23 joined this volunteers unit, did you have this kokade, kokarde and a

24 five-point star or only this kokarde?

25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] We got weapons and equipment from

Page 2552

1 them, all the necessary equipment from uniforms to everything else. But

2 we did not get any emblems from them. Sometimes they would be already

3 sewn on the uniforms, the patches would be already sewn on to the

4 uniforms, but not on our caps. The caps had a five-pointed star already

5 as a component part of the cap. So we were issued the five-pointed stars

6 when we were given these caps in that sense, yes.

7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You received that kit, the

8 equipment, pants, socks, weapons. Did you -- did you have a helmet and

9 did you have this five-point star engraved, embossed in the helmet?

10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's right.

11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. It may now be time

12 to have a break.

13 Ms. Dahl, normally the examination-in-chief is over. Is that so

14 or not?

15 MS. DAHL: I'm sorry, I don't understand your question. I had one

16 or two follow-up questions of Mr. Stoparic and would like to have the

17 videos marked for identification.

18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, one moment. Yes, we'll

19 come back to this.

20 First numbers for the video-clips, Mr. Registrar.

21 THE REGISTRAR: That will be MFI P30.

22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Excellent.

23 Ms. Dahl, I'm going to try and be as clear as possible, because

24 sometimes I thought you did not understand me. It may be my fault. I'm

25 taking on the responsibility for it.

Page 2553

1 So back to the topic. The Trial Chamber decided to give you five

2 hours for the examination-in-chief. Presently we've nearly reached five

3 hours and 30 minutes, so you're 30 minutes beyond the initial time

4 allotted to you, which is not admissible [as interpreted], because

5 otherwise, the balance would not be respected in the proceedings. So I

6 repeat, when a party is given a finite amount of time by the Trial

7 Chamber, the party has to comply with the time restraint. It is ruled out

8 that they get additional time, because this may carry certain

9 consequences. It so happens that you're already 30 minutes beyond your

10 time. So you have to put an end to your examination-in-chief. You said

11 that you had one or two follow-up questions. Fine. Okay. But after

12 those two, are you done?

13 MS. DAHL: I will conclude my examination in accordance with the

14 Chamber's instructions.

15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So if we have a few minutes

16 left, put these one or two follow-up questions and then your

17 examination-in-chief will be completed.

18 Go ahead.

19 MS. DAHL: Thank you, Your Honour.

20 Q. I want to turn your attention, Mr. Stoparic, to preparations for

21 going into action at Bosanski Grahovo and Livno. With regard to a

22 kokarde, did you receive a similar instruction from Ratko Mladic about how

23 to wear that?

24 A. What do you mean, in terms of similar use?

25 Q. Well, General Mladic visited you then; correct?

Page 2554

1 A. Yes, I remember that. Kresits is the name of the place, and it

2 was a factory for manufacturing some agricultural material, as far as I

3 remember correctly. But as for the kokarde, he said that we should carry

4 it in our hearts, not on our heads.

5 Q. Did he give you instructions about how to treat civilians when

6 taking Livno?

7 A. As far as I can remember, he said that up to Livno, he is not even

8 interested in pets. That's what he said, ironically, and in Livno he said

9 that we should take care of civilians. Not more, not less. Literally

10 that.

11 Q. What did you understand him to mean when he said that on the way

12 to Livno he was not even interested in pets?

13 A. How did I understand this... That he wasn't interested in the

14 prisoners probably.

15 Q. Did you understand that they could be killed?

16 A. I personally, yes.

17 Q. What was the ethnic makeup of Livno?

18 A. I don't know. I think that the vast majority of the population is

19 Croat but I'm not sure. Before the war I had never been to Livno, never

20 in my life.

21 Q. And what was your understanding of the meaning of Mladic's

22 instructions to take care of the civilians in Livno?

23 A. Well, I didn't even try to understand him. For me, he was a

24 legend. What he said, that is the way I thought things should be. It

25 wasn't only me. It was everybody. He said that in Livno we should take

Page 2555

1 care of civilians. Probably not to be cruel towards civilians. At any

2 rate, to take care of civilians. We all know what that means.

3 Q. What was your understanding of what he said regarding caring your

4 hat in your heart instead on your head?

5 A. Well, he's not the only one who used to say that. Many JNA

6 officers -- well, then he was not a JNA officer. Maybe he was. I can't

7 remember exactly. But many of the officers, in view of the training and

8 education they had, they did not give an oath to Serbian state but to

9 Yugoslavia and many thought that the kokade was not needed, rather the

10 five-pointed star and it was my understanding that what he meant, the fact

11 that you like Serbia and are a Serb, you should bear that in your heart,

12 it doesn't have to be on your head, that was my understanding of it. I'm

13 going to give you this other observation that was there. There was also a

14 technical problem on account of kokades. If a Croat would happen to see

15 you through his sights and if he would see me with a kokade and another

16 one with a five-pointed star, I think he's going to kill me first.

17 Q. Was that because it represented you or identified you as a

18 Chetnik?

19 A. Well, the Croats called all the Serbian soldiers Chetniks, but I

20 would have been an ideal target for him.

21 MS. DAHL: With that, Your Honour, I will conclude my examination.

22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Ms. Dahl. We will

23 now break for 20 minutes.

24 Could Mr. Registrar do what needs to be done to get the faxes that

25 were sent by Mr. Seselj's associates and hand them over.

Page 2556

1 I am being told that Mr. Seselj's has already received his faxes.

2 That's one problem off the list.

3 And we will meet -- we'll resume in 20 minutes.

4 --- Recess taken at 3.55 p.m.

5 --- On resuming at 4.21 p.m.

6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. The hearing is

7 resumed.

8 Now before giving the floor to Mr. Seselj for the

9 cross-examination, let me talk about the problem with the videos and their

10 interpretation. I'm asking both parties, Prosecution as well Defence, the

11 following: When they intend to show a video, they must hand it to the

12 Interpretation Service before the hearing, this video, saying that they

13 intend to play the video.

14 Therefore, the interpreters can hear and see the video beforehand

15 in order to be able to interpreted it in court.

16 Secondly, we gave some MFI numbers to these videos. The Trial

17 Chamber has noted the observations of Mr. Seselj and can only admit these

18 videos when it will have the script in English of what was said in that

19 video.

20 This is the way we will proceed.

21 These technical problems have been taken care of. I will now give

22 the floor to Mr. Seselj for his cross-examination.

23 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.

24 Cross-examination by Mr. Seselj:

25 Q. [Interpretation] Mr. Stoparic, we're going to start with some

Page 2557

1 parts of your CV that I'm particularly interested in.

2 From the documents we managed to find out some basic information

3 about you up until 1990. Sometime in May 1990, you were wounded in a

4 clash with Albanian terrorists in Kosovo and Metohija, isn't that right?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. And then you were treated at the military medical academy in

7 Belgrade. Was that at the VMA or some other hospital?

8 A. The VMA inter alia.

9 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note, it is too fast and there is

10 overlapping.

11 MS. DAHL: Your Honour, I cannot follow the questions and answers

12 because of the overlap of the speakers, and I request that Mr. Seselj be

13 reminded to slow down and an allow a pause for the interpretation of his

14 question and likewise the interpretation of the answer.

15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, absolutely. This is a

16 well-known problem here in this Tribunal. When two people speak the same

17 language you must absolutely give some time in order for the interpreters

18 to be -- to have time to translate the question before the answer starts,

19 and the same for -- otherwise the interpreters can't follow, and the

20 Judges can't follow either.

21 So Mr. Seselj and Mr. Stoparic, please make sure that you wait

22 between the question and the answer.

23 Go ahead.

24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I will try to do that.

25 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

Page 2558

1 Q. My direct question, Mr. Stoparic, after your medical treatment,

2 you returned to Sid, right?

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. That was in 1999?

5 A. Probably.

6 Q. What did you do then?

7 A. At that time, for about a year, I was still busy with medical

8 treatment. I practically have to have this bandage on my hand for almost

9 a year and every two months I went to the institute where employees of the

10 MUP of Serbia are treated medically and then they would extend my

11 sick-leave. As for my salary, I went directly to the SHA base in

12 Batajnica myself in order to collect my salary and after that, I already

13 became entitled to a disability pension. It wasn't too big but ...

14 Q. So after completing your hospitalisation because you stayed there

15 for a bit over a year, you were -- you had paid sick-leave as a member of

16 the reserve force of the police?

17 A. That's right.

18 Q. And after that, when that was completed, you got the status of a

19 war invalid?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. Since when have you had this status, in tentative terms?

22 A. I don't know exactly. I don't have it any longer. I don't know

23 if now.

24 Q. Why not?

25 A. There was a review and I was not in the country, and I received a

Page 2559

1 decision stating that I had to be present for the review. That is the

2 usual procedure. For a year, year and a half you are a war invalid, and

3 that you go for a general review and then you get a permanent document,

4 but I couldn't do it because I wasn't there.

5 Q. So sometime in 2000 you obtained the status of a war invalid?

6 A. Roughly. While I was in the state of obtaining this status

7 during the course of that year, I don't know exactly when.

8 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter did not hear the question.

9 A. Yes.

10 MS. DAHL: [Previous translation continues] ... There's inadequate

11 pause between the question and answer.

12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Absolutely, you're speaking

13 much too fast, both of you. So please allow for a pause between the

14 questions and the answers.

15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Now I'm going to exercise even

16 stricter control over myself.

17 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

18 Q. Tell me, how big was this disability payment, roughly?

19 A. Well, I am not going to speak in dinars because that changed, but

20 I'm going to go speak in terms of Euros. Well, I don't know. About 50

21 Euro.

22 Q. One could hardly live on that, could one?

23 A. Yes. It's pretty bad.

24 Q. Did you do anything else in order to be able to survive?

25 A. No. Well, I had two brothers who helped me.

Page 2560

1 Q. They practically supported you?

2 A. Practically, yes.

3 Q. And how long did that go on?

4 A. I don't know. I don't know until when that went on.

5 Q. Approximately.

6 A. Well, afterwards my hand got better so I would do something, if

7 possible, but literally it went on until I left Serbia.

8 Q. I'm not going to ask you what country you live in. I'm really not

9 interested in that. But tell me, when did you leave Serbia, what year?

10 A. I think 2004.

11 Q. 2004?

12 A. Yes.

13 Q. So for all of four years, you lived on roughly 50 Euro a month and

14 on the assistance you received from your two brothers. That was a very

15 hard life, wasn't it?

16 A. Well, you were there yourself at the time and you know --

17 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note, both people are speaking at

18 this time.

19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Life was like that.

20 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

21 Q. From then onwards, you were in a western country. From 2004

22 onwards, did you ever return to Serbia?

23 A. No.

24 Q. That means that for all of four years now you have been abroad?

25 A. Roughly.

Page 2561

1 Q. I don't want to disclose your place of residence in any way. I

2 would just be interested in your way of life over these past four years.

3 Namely, are you staying at a hotel?

4 A. No.

5 Q. Do you have an apartment of your own?

6 A. It's still not mine.

7 Q. It's paid by the Office of the Prosecutor of the International

8 Tribunal.

9 MS. DAHL: I'm not seeing the relevance of these questions.

10 Perhaps the relevance was in the last question, but -- so I withdraw the

11 objection.

12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I am questioning the credibility of

13 this witness, Mr. President, and I did not put a single question that is

14 not in keeping with procedure.

15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The objection had been

16 withdrawn, so you can condition.

17 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

18 Q. Now what is it that I'm interested in now. Is it paid for by a

19 foreign government, by The Hague Tribunal, or a third party. You don't

20 even have to say who the third party is.

21 A. I'm the third party. I'm paying for it myself.

22 Q. What is your current revenue?

23 A. Well, to tell you exactly how much money I make every month, well,

24 that's relative, because I have a company of my own and I never know how

25 much money I'm going to make.

Page 2562

1 Q. Now you have a company of your own abroad?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. It works well?

4 A. Well, I opened it only about a year ago, but I managed to repay my

5 loans and ...

6 Q. I see.

7 MS. DAHL: [Previous translation continues] ... The

8 question/answer is speeding up again and I'm seeing that they're

9 overlapping the interpreters, and I would like to be able to follow the

10 proceedings.

11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Absolutely. Mr. Seselj,

12 please, take care of that.

13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I am sorry, Your Honour. It's not

14 Mr. Seselj's fault. I understand him before there is an interpretation,

15 so I give fast answers. I'll do my best not to do that in the future.

16 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

17 Q. In the previous three years before you opened this company, what

18 is it that you lived on?

19 A. For a while -- well, it is not a secret that I was in the

20 relocation programme of this Court.

21 Q. And you lived on their donations, contributions, monthly

22 contributions?

23 A. Yes.

24 Q. Can you remember how many money that was per month?

25 A. If this is not against some rules here, I can say.

Page 2563

1 Q. No, it is not against any rules.

2 A. Well, that would be 30 Euro per day, quite literally.

3 Q. That is about 90 Euro a month, right?

4 THE INTERPRETER: 900 Euros a month, interpreter's correction.

5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.

6 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

7 Q. For those three years?

8 A. No, no. I became independent earlier on. I opened a company a

9 year ago, but before that, I took a job so I made my own money.

10 Q. And how long did this status of yours go on when you lived only on

11 the assistance provided to you by The Hague Tribunal?

12 A. Well, I would say about two years.

13 Q. Two years. And could one live normally on 900 Euro a month?

14 A. Well, I did. I tried. It wasn't really that much money in the

15 west, but one could live a normal life. It's not that I did not have many

16 things.

17 Q. So now you're not enjoying the status of a witness that the

18 Tribunal takes care of, that is to say, a witness that is supported by the

19 Tribunal and giving him certain amounts of money or whatever?

20 A. No, no.

21 Q. You're a foreigner, although you're resident in a foreign country

22 and nothing more than that?

23 A. Precisely.

24 Q. You were brought in for an interview by the OTP before this

25 testimony. Is that right? That was on the 3rd of January, this year.

Page 2564

1 A. Yes.

2 Q. You were asked here to the headquarters of the Tribunal and they

3 started preparing you for your evidence.

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. How long did these preparations last?

6 A. Well, up until the testimony started itself, a day before that.

7 Q. How many days was that? Every day up until the testimony?

8 A. Every working day.

9 Q. How many hours per day?

10 A. I think for as long as the hearing takes place here, so it's not

11 the entire day.

12 Q. About four hours?

13 A. Something like.

14 Q. And during these preparations there was a problem?

15 A. What problem do you mean?

16 Q. You were not prepared to confirm that at the first rally of the

17 Serb Radical Party in Sid, I used the Hitler salute to greet the persons

18 present there?

19 A. I never said that.

20 Q. But that is what was in your statement that the OTP made you sign,

21 right?

22 A. Well, you see, Mr. Seselj, I am sorry for addressing you.

23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, you're answering a

24 question at every meeting and I cannot recall exactly what the question

25 was and how come this comparison came up with Hitler, probably with the

Page 2565

1 speed involved and everything. I would never say that a Serb resembled

2 Hitler.

3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] What was said here specifically was

4 that I used the Hitler salute to greet the persons present there.

5 MS. DAHL: I have two objections. First, Mr. Seselj is

6 mischaracterizing what the statement says, and second, he interrupted the

7 question and did not let him finish giving the explanation he was giving

8 to the question.

9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes. Let's go back to this

10 Hitler salute, Hitler greeting. Could you say in which paragraph of the

11 written statement this is mentioned?

12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I'm referring to page 2 of the OTP

13 document dated the 7th of January 2008, the third paragraph, where it says

14 that I addressed the masses as Hitler.

15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes. But this document comes

16 from the proofing between Prosecution and the witness. And the witness

17 must have changed either a word or a sentence that was in his 2006

18 statement.

19 Maybe Ms. Dahl could tell us in which paragraph in the 2006

20 statement we can find this.

21 MS. DAHL: Your Honour, it is at paragraph 55 which is on ERN

22 number 06031470, and if you'd like I could find the e-court number if

23 you'd like it displayed.

24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.

25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I hope that this is not being taken

Page 2566

1 from my time.

2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes. On paragraph 55, it says

3 that Seselj addressed the crowd like Hitler.

4 Please continue, Mr. Seselj.

5 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

6 Q. Did you say that I really greeted the masses of people present as

7 Hitler or not?

8 A. In the preparations for this trial I noticed the same thing and I

9 tried to give an explanation. During the proofing with the Prosecutor,

10 never ever would I say that of a Serb, that he resembled Hitler in any

11 way. It is only possible that there was this comparison made in the heat

12 of the speech or whatever.

13 Q. But, Mr. Stoparic, allegedly you signed this statement. Does that

14 mean that you did not read it before having signed it?

15 A. I did read it but not as carefully as I did the second time.

16 Q. So you didn't read it?

17 A. Well, it is very hard to go on for hours and you can barely wait

18 to stop and go and take a rest.

19 Q. So you were not focussed?

20 A. Possibly.

21 Q. There were therefore other omissions in the same way in this

22 statement, right? There were some things that you didn't want to have in

23 your statement that found their way into the statement?

24 A. There is that possibility.

25 Q. During the first day of the examination-in-chief you stated here

Page 2567

1 that you do not recall when the first rally of the Serb Radical Party --

2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Just a minute. This problem of

3 the Hitler salute, could the witness please look at paragraph 55 in his

4 own language and could he please read out in his own language what is

5 written.

6 MS. DAHL: Your Honour, I'm tendering the signed original.

7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, please, could you look

8 at paragraph 55.

9 In the middle of this paragraph, after the word "radnike," there

10 is the sentence that starts with "Seselj."

11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I see that.

12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Could you please read it out

13 loud in your own language and we will get the interpretation.

14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] "Seselj greeted the persons gathered

15 there like Hitler and he was" --

16 Shall I go on?

17 "Asking the Croats to leave Serbia."

18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.

19 Mr. Seselj, you have the floor.

20 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

21 Q. During the examination-in-chief by the Prosecutor, you stated that

22 you did not remember when this rally of the Serb Radical Party in Sid took

23 place exactly, right? You don't know whether it took place in 1991 or

24 1992.

25 A. Yes, yes. Now I really don't know when each rally took place

Page 2568

1 because it wasn't that there was only one rally. There were several.

2 Q. Yes. But the Prosecution made you sign this; namely, that this

3 rally took place in the summer of 1991 and you did sign that. Because you

4 were not focussed enough; is that right?

5 A. Well, it's not that I have to say this every time that I wasn't

6 focussed enough. Of course I tried to be focussed.

7 Q. But you omitted that?

8 A. Well, I don't know whether it was an omission or an oversight. I

9 don't know the exact date and perhaps I gave a tentative one.

10 Q. I will give you the exact date. The first rally in Sid was held

11 on the 15th of May, 1992, during the election campaign for the federal

12 elections. Have I jogged your memory now?

13 A. No. You haven't, because I really cannot remember.

14 Q. All right. I'm stating that piece of information here now because

15 it's contained in the archives of the Serb Radical Party and this can be

16 checked with the authorities in Serbia because every rally has to be

17 registered with the police. Every public gathering has to be registered

18 with the police. This rally took place on the 15th of May 1992 according

19 to the information of the Serb Radical Party the municipal committee in

20 Sid was established on the 5th of November, 1991. That is to say, after

21 you went into the war.

22 Over here, the Prosecution insisted that you went into the war

23 because you were inspired by the speech I made at the rally that was held

24 a year later. Is that right?

25 A. I really don't know when that rally was held. But I'm almost

Page 2569

1 convinced that I had heard you before going into the war.

2 Q. You could have heard me on television too, right?

3 A. Possibly.

4 Q. I was part of TV shows, radio shows like any other politician?

5 A. Possible, that's quite possible. Because were quite popular.

6 Q. Mr. Stoparic, you took part in the war on several occasions. Did

7 you personally -- are you personally proud of your participation in the

8 war? You personally with your conduct, your behaviour and so on and so

9 forth?

10 A. Well, I was never sorry that I did go.

11 Q. You were never sorry, right. Now from the Prosecution here you

12 were given something to sign and they say that you made a -- a step which

13 was a mad step to join up. Now, does that correspond to what you said or

14 is this something that was put in by the Prosecution arbitrarily?

15 A. Well, when you --

16 MS. DAHL: [Previous translation continues] ... Your Honour, could

17 we have the paragraph number?

18 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

19 Q. Paragraph 4. N06031337, in the same step.

20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, please, this is the

21 problem: When we read paragraph 55 at paragraph 4, we get the feeling

22 that in Sid you heard Mr. Seselj's speech, the speech he gave on the

23 football field; and that was in the summer 1991.

24 And then on paragraph 4 we see that either in August or September,

25 you go and volunteer. Mr. Seselj has just told us that this speech was

Page 2570

1 held on May 15th, 1992, later on.

2 So if you left in September 1991 to volunteer, then this has

3 nothing to do with the speech. What's the real story? You see in your

4 own language you signed a document saying that it was in September 1991

5 and there's a logic with paragraph 4. But if the speech was held on May

6 15th, 1992 for the regional elections, then this could -- this is a

7 problem. A Judge would wonder about this, which is normal.

8 So if as it says in paragraph 4, you know, you volunteered, we'd

9 like to know whether you volunteered just out of your own accord or did

10 you volunteer after having heard a speech?

11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I've already said several times that

12 by getting to know about Mr. Seselj and his concepts, some of his

13 concepts, well, it's not essential for me whether I heard it a year later

14 or not. He was making speeches even before that and I always said that

15 he's not the only person that inspired me and that is only because of

16 Mr. Seselj and his programme that I went to war. There's something that

17 is called patriotism which prompted me and the fact that I believe many of

18 the things that Mr. Seselj said, that's the truth of it, and what I said

19 that it was as describing it as an insane step, I did say that, because

20 well, not my decision to go to war. I'm proud of going to war, but it was

21 an insane decision to go and be killed, to go and die.

22 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

23 Q. Since you are proud, Mr. Stoparic, of your participation in the

24 war - and I congratulate you for that, very sincerely - did you consider

25 during the fight for the liberation of Vukovar yourself to be a part of

Page 2571

1 some monstrous plan, and after the fighting ceased, did you consider this

2 in Vukovar to be part of a monstrous plan which I devised or somebody

3 else?

4 A. Well, I really don't know whether anybody devised a monstrous

5 plan. I personally did not feel to be a part of any monstrous plan, no, I

6 personally did not feel myself to be part of that.

7 Q. Mr. Stoparic, as a man who was at one time a member of the Serbian

8 Radical Party but no longer are, but as somebody who is proud of your

9 wartime past and your past as a combatant, did you consider that I

10 personally tricked you by any of my public appearances or by delivering

11 any of my speeches?

12 A. I personally was dis -- have been disillusioned with all the

13 relevant politicians of the day.

14 Q. You were probably disillusioned with respect to the consequences,

15 the unsuccessful fighting, the routing that the Serbs experienced in

16 Serbian Krajina and in Kosovo.

17 A. Yes, that too, and the loss of territory.

18 Q. Yes. But do you consider that I lied to you and other people in

19 striving for the defence of Serbian Krajina Republika Srpska and the

20 defence of Kosovo and Metohija?

21 A. I consider to this day that had fate made you president, had that

22 been the destiny, things might have looked very different.

23 Q. Well, thank you, Mr. Stoparic, for that trust and confidence.

24 So what your answer is is that you don't think that I lied to you?

25 A. I don't think you lied to us. You said what you felt and it's up

Page 2572

1 to us -- it was up to us to believe you or not. I personally did believe

2 you.

3 Q. But the Prosecution slipped in something that they wanted you to

4 sign and --

5 THE INTERPRETER: May the interpreters have a reference, please.

6 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

7 Q. That I became part of the monstrous plan of Slobodan Milosevic,

8 and that is to be found in paragraph 6. It says: "Hence I cannot

9 reproach myself that much, even now, for becoming part of Slobodan

10 Milosevic's monstrous global plan."

11 A. Well, I was speaking about you, not about Mr. Milosevic.

12 Q. Does that mean that a monstrous plan on the part of Slobodan

13 Milosevic did exist whose goal was to liberate Vukovar from the Croatian

14 paramilitary forces?

15 A. Probably I didn't. But I didn't use that word in association with

16 Vukovar. Probably it referred to all my disillusionment and

17 disappointment, but let me add something. There is some culprit, someone

18 to blame, and as I feel that I have been let down, then it is Milosevic.

19 THE INTERPRETER: Could the speakers kindly slow down once again,

20 thank you.

21 A. Well, I know that we were brave enough and had enough weapons.

22 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

23 Q. Well, where, then, lies the monstrosity of this alleged -- yes,

24 yes, I will do my best. I get carried away, but I will nonetheless do my

25 best again.

Page 2573

1 Does that mean that some monstrous general plan, global plan

2 existed on the part of Slobodan Milosevic whose component parts are both

3 you and I, that we are component parts of that plan, or do you hold it

4 against Milosevic for being at the head of Serbia during those years and

5 the Serb people were unsuccessful in their fighting?

6 A. Of course I hold it against him. Not only was he not successful

7 in his battle, but we all know what happened to the Serbian people. As to

8 the monstrous plan, well, it would be a very bad thing if Milosevic as the

9 president of state did not have a plan for all those many years. Now

10 somebody -- some people refer to this plan as monstrous. I do not,

11 Mr. Seselj. I have changed some of my visions and opinions, the ones that

12 I held when I was 23 years old and I don't say that sometimes it is

13 difficult for me to go back to say what I thought in 1991 and to

14 distinguish between what I feel today. They are intermingled, but I'm

15 sure you will understand that.

16 Q. As a volunteer, you reported to the territorial defence of

17 Slavonia Branja Western Srem directly, is that right?

18 A. Yes. It was by chance that I heard one day that they had offices

19 in Sid.

20 Q. At that time the Serb Radical Party did not have an office.

21 A. In that same office, when the TO of Slavonia Branja and Western

22 Srem left, then the offices became the offices of the Serbian Radical

23 Party.

24 Q. But that was because otherwise, this was a building where the

25 political parties had their offices. Is that right?

Page 2574

1 A. Yes. The Socialist Party had its office there, too, and various

2 other parties as well.

3 Q. Yes. And now here from the Prosecution they slipped in a document

4 for you to sign saying that this -- these representative offices of the

5 Territorial Defence of SBWS existed in parallel. Or, rather, Eastern

6 Slavonia and Western Srem and the seat of the Serbian Radical Party. Is

7 that right?

8 A. The Serbian Radical Party at the time was already being

9 established or perhaps it had already been informed, but that was in

10 Mr. Milenko Petrovic's private house so perhaps this went on parallel to

11 that.

12 Q. Now, I am putting to you the following: That the Serbian Radical

13 Party in Sid in the house belonging to Milenko Petrovic was established on

14 the 5th of November, 1991, and furthermore, that it was only in March 1992

15 that it was given state offices by the Sid municipality in the building of

16 the former committee where otherwise the other political parties were put

17 up, this being vital movement and renewal movement and all the others?

18 A. Well, I don't know what parties exactly.

19 Q. But am I right in what I'm saying in general terms?

20 A. Well, I don't know the exact date when these offices were given

21 over to political organisations, but that's not difficult to check out.

22 Q. Certainly. The municipality has it on their records when it gave

23 out the offices to the different parties because it was a regular act in

24 conformity with the laws. Every political party had the right to be given

25 offices, premises if it had a Municipal Board in the municipality in

Page 2575

1 question, isn't that right, and then this was reduced to parliamentary

2 political parties because 300 parties registered and then it was only the

3 parliamentary parties that were able to get state-owned premises. Isn't

4 that right?

5 A. Well, it was probably like that. And of course it depended on the

6 respect that the political parties had at a local level. If it was a

7 large party it didn't matter that in other towns they weren't as strong

8 but if they happened to be strong locally.

9 Q. All right. So we've dealt with those questions and we will move

10 on to another area, another set of questions.

11 For a time you were in the war?

12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Before we move on to something

13 else, this is a very important question, because there are two different

14 situations. If, in September 1991, you volunteer in the premises of the

15 TO without there being a -- an office of the Serbian Radical Party, then

16 the conclusion that can be drawn is that at that time the Serbian Radical

17 Party has nothing to do with the fact that you volunteered in September

18 1991, but maybe you went there in September 1991 to the TO's offices, to

19 the office and there was an office of the political party and an office of

20 the TO and then the situation is very different.

21 Earlier Mr. Seselj told us that Petrovic set up the Serbian

22 Radical Party on November 7, 1991, almost two months after you

23 volunteered, and that his party had a premise in that very building in

24 March 1992. So things here are very different and the consequences are

25 very different.

Page 2576

1 So to your recollection, could you tell us how things were

2 exactly?

3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] And I've always said that --

4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Excuse me, I want things to be

5 very accurate, because in my -- the way I look at criminal law, there's no

6 approximation. Things are very specific and very accurate. We cannot

7 have any margins for interpretation. This is very important. You

8 volunteered, in brackets, to the TO in November 1991, and I want to be

9 absolutely convinced beyond any reasonable doubt that the day you went to

10 that office there was only the TO there and no other political party. The

11 accused told us that the premises were given to his party in March 1992,

12 six months later.

13 So what exactly can you confirm?

14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I have already said that I started

15 out as a volunteer of the Territorial Defence of Slavonia Branja Western

16 Srem and I never mentioned that my first engagement was in the

17 organisation of the Serbian Radical Party.

18 Now, as far as the dates are concerned, I really don't know. I

19 have no reason to doubt anyone not to believe them and without the

20 offices, the Serbian Radical Party existed in my town.

21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] All right.

22 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

23 Q. The Serbian Radical Party existed for almost four months before

24 given premises. We have an official piece of information that it was

25 established on the 5th November 1991 but that's after you went to war.

Page 2577

1 Mr. Stoparic, I'm not interested in this first involvement of

2 yours because you weren't a volunteer of the Serbian Radical Party at the

3 time nor did you have anything to do with the volunteers. However, you do

4 mention something else, the training at Lipovaca, for instance. What has

5 this Lipovaca got to do with the Serbian Radical Party or Serbian Chetnik

6 Movement? Can it have any connections at all. Anything to do with them?

7 A. Well, I don't know what the Serbian Radical Party has with the

8 training camp. I have already said who conducted the professional

9 training course. It's somebody who didn't look like a radical nor did he

10 introduce himself as a radical. But from there, from that camp we were

11 sent to Supoderica.

12 Q. Then it says in your statement something else, that you had some

13 Chetnik instructors or rather instructors from the Chetnik Movement and

14 they probably looked like Chetniks, but did you have any proof and

15 evidence to show that from the Serbian Chetnik Movement they were within

16 the Serbian Radical Movement?

17 A. No, that's not how they introduced themselves or presented

18 themselves.

19 Q. That means that in paragraph 22, what it says there, that was

20 something put in, slipped in by the Prosecution because it's something

21 that they needed to do because what is mentioned here is the Serbian

22 Chetnik Movement and of course when you the Serbian Chetnik Movement in

23 this way, then this associates one with the Serbian Radical Party and its

24 component parts, but that's what you actually meant to say. Isn't that

25 right?

Page 2578

1 A. Well, I said that a number of people introduced themselves as

2 being Chetniks, members of the Chetnik Movement if I can put that way.

3 And, Mr. Seselj, we both know that it's not the Serbian Radical Party

4 who's the only one that had a section of the Serbian Chetnik Movement.

5 Many people did and I met or, rather, I saw various ID booklets from

6 Serbian Chetnik Movements.

7 Q. That's what I wanted to hear from you without giving a leading

8 question and suggesting the answer. But, anyway, thank you. So when

9 somebody's referred to as a Chetnik, that in principle means absolutely

10 nothing with respect to belonging to the Serbian Radical Party, for

11 instance, or its section of the Serbian Chetnik Movement. Am I right in

12 saying that?

13 A. Usually when you see a bus going past with volunteers and if it

14 has a poster with your image on it, then that most probably is something

15 organised by the Serbian Radical Party. But I have to be quite honest.

16 There were various sections, so-called sections, but if somebody

17 introduces himself as a Chetnik then I'm not anybody in authority to

18 question them or ask for their IDs. I just take what he says at face

19 value.

20 Q. All right. So the Serbian Radical Party, with this training in

21 Lipovaca, could not have had any links with that, anything to do with

22 that. That's all I'm interested in. I don't want to go into the other

23 details.

24 A. Well, I don't know for sure. All I do know is that I went from

25 there.

Page 2579

1 Q. So you don't know that this was linked to the Serbian Radical

2 Party. That's what I want to know. That's what I'm interested in.

3 A. All I know is that the guys who were there were from the Serbian

4 Chetnik Movement.

5 Q. Some Chetnik Movement?

6 A. Yes. They didn't say which particular one.

7 Q. Yes, I will slow down again.

8 Now, later on, as a reservist of the First Guards Brigade,

9 according to your statement, you were transferred to the Leva Supoderica

10 Detachment, the Territorial Defence of Vukovar. Isn't that right?

11 A. That entire group from that place that was called Lipovaca, we

12 went there, except the people who they asked before sending them whether

13 they were afraid and if they were afraid, they could step down.

14 Q. Now, in the Supoderica Detachment, you found the citizens, locals

15 from Vukovar, you found the volunteers of the Serbian Radical Party and

16 you also came across other volunteers who did not belong to the Serbian

17 Radical Party. Is that the truth of it?

18 A. Yes, there were people --

19 Q. That corresponds to what you said in your examination-in-chief,

20 your testimony during examination-in-chief?

21 MS. DAHL: [Previous translation continues] ... Your Honour.

22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, Ms. Dahl.

23 MS. DAHL: The accused interrupted the witness's answer. I'd like

24 him to be able to finish.

25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, please finish your answer,

Page 2580

1 Witness.

2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know what the question was

3 at this point. 200 questions have been addressed to me. You have to tell

4 me which particular question you're referring to.

5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Well, it was the question on

6 page 63 [as interpreted], line 5. You said, yes, there were people and

7 then there's some dots or question marks.

8 Mr. Seselj, would you mind asking the question again.

9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I hope you won't take this away from

10 my valuable time.

11 My question was: Did Mr. Stoparic, in the Leva Supoderica

12 Detachment, find people who were the local people of Vukovar, people who

13 were volunteers of the Serbian Radical Party, and people who were

14 volunteers but not from the Serbian Radical Party and he gave me an answer

15 in the affirmative.

16 So I only noted that that corresponded to his statement which he

17 gave during the examination-in-chief and that was all that was to it, as

18 far as I can recall.

19 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So what is your answer,

20 Witness?

21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It is true that in the Leva

22 Supoderica Detachment there were people who were locals, local people of

23 Vukovar or from the surroundings and also there were people from the

24 Serbian Radical Party who had arrived there in an organised fashion as

25 well as other people who joined it.

Page 2581

1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] One moment. I'd like to go

2 back to this topic addressed by Mr. Seselj, because I'm trying to see, to

3 dissect everything you said and I want to avoid any confusion or

4 misunderstanding.

5 You spoke about the three instructors or the three people who

6 instructed the volunteers. You give their names. I'm going to mention

7 one of them. I'm sure that's going to help you remember, because you said

8 Ljubo Ivanovic is the name. He was a Chetnik captain from Nis and you

9 said that he was the one in charge, the boss. And I discover that this

10 captain was later killed during the war.

11 In paragraph 24, you explained that when he was killed there was

12 his funeral in Nis and you said that Mr. Seselj sent a letter after he

13 died. I'm trying to reconstruct all of this, because, you see, what I

14 want to know is whether the investigators tried to get you to say certain

15 things that you would later have signed without realising the import of

16 what you have said.

17 Do you remember this Captain Ivanovic? He was an instructor.

18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I have said that

19 Captain, not Jovanovic, but Ivanovic was there, that he had introduced

20 himself as the person who would be explaining some things that we needed

21 when -- in fighting. I also said that another person going by the

22 nickname of [indiscernible] did all the other instructing, and he seemed

23 to me to be the more competent person --

24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. This captain,

25 Captain Ivanovic was he, as far as you know, a member of the Serbian

Page 2582

1 Radical Party?

2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] At that particular moment, in

3 September, October of 1991, I'm not quite sure, I don't know. I just know

4 that there was this Serbian Chetnik Movement.

5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. So why did you tell

6 the investigators that when he died in combat, he -- Mr. Seselj sent him a

7 letter? How do you know that? Why would Mr. Seselj have sent a letter

8 because of the funeral?

9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. President, I was at that funeral

10 myself, and there were very many people attending the funeral after this

11 man had been killed. This letter was sent by Mr. Seselj and it was

12 publicly read out to all of us as a sign of gratitude for his contribution

13 in the battles that had been conducted for the offence [as interpreted] of

14 the Serbian lands.

15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You attended the funeral, you

16 were present when the letter was read out. We don't have the letter. Was

17 it a letter that paid homage to a member of the Serbian Radical Party or

18 was it to pay tribute to a captain who was killed in combat?

19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You asked me, Honourable Judge,

20 whether I knew that he was a member of the Serbian Radical Party in 1991.

21 This funeral took place several years later, and I don't know about 1991,

22 and I cannot say about 1991.

23 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Judge, in order not to lose time, I

24 can clarify this.

25 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

Page 2583

1 Q. Ljuba Ivanovic --

2 MS. DAHL: Your Honour, Mr. Seselj is interrupting the witness.

3 I'd like him to be able to finish his answer.

4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I will give Mr. Seselj the

5 floor.

6 But could you complete what you were saying, Witness?

7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I simply said in answering your

8 question whether he was a member of the Serbian Radical Party in 1991, I

9 don't know that. I know that he introduced himself as a member of the

10 Serbian Chetnik Movement. Later I came to know him better and I took part

11 in some actions together with him. Then he was a member of the Serbian

12 Radical Party and was killed in Herzegovina in combat as a member, but I

13 don't know whether he was one in the first moments when I had met him

14 first.

15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Seselj.

16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Judge, we shall deal with that

17 question when we deal with the question of Herzegovina.

18 Indeed Ljuba Ivanovic joined the Serbian Radical Party in 1992 and

19 went to Herzegovina as a volunteer but I leave that for when we deal with

20 the question of Herzegovina. What is of the essence here is that if he

21 was in Lipovaca at that time he could not have had any connections with

22 the Serbian Radical Party. Because a political party is an organisation

23 with a fluctuating membership. One can be a member one day and not the

24 next. It is not something that is unchangeable and it is open to

25 fluctuating, but we shall deal with that question when we come to the

Page 2584

1 question of Herzegovina.

2 MS. DAHL: [Previous translation continues] ... These are

3 submissions, not questions and I ask that we return to examining the

4 witness rather than making submissions.

5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes. Mr. Seselj, you should

6 have told the witness, if I were to tell that you Mr. Ivanovic joined the

7 Serbian Radical Party in 1992, would you agree with that or not? Then the

8 witness could have said, I don't know, yes, you're right, et cetera.

9 Let's move on. It is now in the transcript that in Mr. Seselj's

10 view, Captain Ivanovic joined the Serbian Radical Party in 1992. That's

11 it.

12 Please proceed.

13 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

14 Q. I just wanted to explain to the Bench why I'm leaving this for

15 later. What is much more important for me is for us to deal with this

16 question, and this is because my time is running out fast, is the question

17 of Vukovar. The commander of that unit, of the Leva Supoderica unit was

18 Milan Lancuzanin. Was he not?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. He was a reserve captain first class, right?

21 A. Yes. Perhaps he had a higher rank. I'm not sure.

22 Q. This is what I remember. Captain first class because reserve

23 officers could go -- only be promoted up to that rank in the former

24 Yugoslavia. He was already the commander of the TO when the Guards

25 Brigade arrived there and when the volunteers of the Serbian Radical Party

Page 2585

1 came. Is that right?

2 A. He was a local. He is a local. He had participated in some

3 operations in the vicinity of Vukovar even before we arrived in Vukovar.

4 Q. Yes. Let us dwell on this question of Chetniks in Vukovar some

5 more.

6 You know, Mr. Stoparic, from the time that the radical party --

7 Serbian Radical Party was set up on the 23rd of February, 1991, that no

8 supreme organ of the Serbian Chetnik Movement ever convened or met? Is

9 that right?

10 A. I don't know that. Shall I continue?

11 Q. Yes.

12 A. I know that you tried to register a party with that name, under

13 that name and later you registered the Serbian Radical Party. Now,

14 whether any supreme or high organ existed and if was called that, I don't

15 know.

16 Q. Let me refresh your memory, Mr. Stoparic. We tried to register

17 the Serbian Chetnik Movement in 1990 when the other political parties

18 registered also. That was in August 1990 and the regime denied us to

19 register on the 23rd -- on the 23rd of February, 1991, we had a congress

20 of unity of unification in Kragujevac where the Serbian Chetnik Movement

21 unified with most of the boards of the Serbian Radical Party and the

22 Serbian Radical Party was established. Is that true?

23 A. Something of the kind transpired, yes.

24 Q. Well, it is odd to my mind that you had never heard after the

25 Serbian Radical Party had been set up in February 1991 that at the summit

Page 2586

1 an organ, a special organ of the Serbian Chetnik Movement convened. You

2 have not heard -- you had not heard.

3 A. No.

4 Q. Well, it is so because nothing of the kind existed. Had something

5 of that kind existed, you would have heard?

6 A. Yes. It would have been in the media, probably.

7 Q. As regards Chetnik emblems in Vukovar, you refer to kokades. Did

8 the Serbian Radical Party ever produce any kokades or emblems of its own?

9 Or are we referring to kokades that were manufactured by different

10 manufacturers and were sold in the streets of Belgrade and other Serbian

11 cities?

12 A. All these symbols, the kokades or even emblems with words or with

13 the letters SCP, Chetnik Movement, could be bought around the railway

14 stations questioning the streets and [indiscernible] in the streets, that

15 is how I obtained my first kokade.

16 Q. Do you know for a fact that the Serbian Radical Party or the

17 section of the party, the Serbian Chetnik Movement, itself produced some

18 of these or commissioned these with the manufacturers, some specific

19 emblems?

20 A. I do not remember anything of the kind. May have happened, might

21 have been the case.

22 Q. But had it been the case, you would have known of it?

23 A. No. I only had occasion once to get a kokade from Zoran

24 Drazilovic.

25 Q. Yes.

Page 2587

1 A. Actually it was from Ljubisa Petkovic, not Zoran Drazilovic.

2 Q. It happened to me when I went to see the combatants at the front

3 line to fill my pockets with kokades that I had bought from street vendors

4 and then hand them out to the combatants who wanted to have them.

5 A. This was also done by Radovoj [indiscernible].

6 Q. And many other people and this was because none of us could bear

7 the sight of the five-pointed star as a communist symbol, is that right?

8 A. Yes. We called ourselves reservists, Chetniks. The reserves

9 called themselves Chetniks and the others were referred to as parties

10 as --

11 THE INTERPRETER: Will parties please not overlap.

12 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

13 Q. But the soldiers, when they got their caps they would actually

14 tear off the five-pointed stars from their caps, off their caps. They

15 didn't want to wear it?

16 JUDGE HARHOFF: May I remind both parties but particularly the

17 witness to observe a pause. Maybe you should train yourself to count to

18 five after Mr. Seselj has spoken before you speak yourself. Thanks.

19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I understand.

20 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

21 Q. There were different types of kokades. Is that so?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. Depending on the particular manufacturer who marketed them?

24 A. Yes. Depending on what all kokade they would base their design

25 on.

Page 2588

1 Q. Do you remember my wearing a kokade when I came to see the

2 combatants at the front?

3 A. Yes, sir, probably.

4 Q. On my chest?

5 A. Yes. I also wore one very often.

6 Q. Did you ever see me with a skull and bones kokade?

7 A. I cannot say that, although I did have one like that.

8 Q. Not that I'm ashamed of that Chetnik tradition. The skull and

9 bones was on the Chetnik kokade during the guerilla fighting against the

10 Turks in Macedonia, was it not?

11 A. I don't know. I'm not that conversant with history. That was one

12 of the versions.

13 Q. But the position of the leadership of the Serbian Radical Party

14 was that not being ashamed of its past, we still consider this skull and

15 bones to be outdated, something which was not befitting and we avoided

16 using it?

17 A. Yes, you are quite right. That was what I asked Mr. Milenko

18 Petrovic when he was the president in Sid. Once at the annual reunion,

19 assembly of the Serbian Radical Party in Sid, the section of the Serbian

20 Chetnik party paid tribute to me or honoured me and the citation said For

21 his contribution to the fight in the -- in all the Serbian lands, it was

22 blue, and at a certain part of this citation you could see the skull and

23 bones emblem and I asked Petric, seeing that this is a symbol that is

24 being avoided, why is it on these certificates of honour given to me, and

25 it was also awarded to some other combatants, other participants in the

Page 2589

1 war. Other things were also given, for instance, paintings, works of

2 arts, et cetera.

3 Q. Yes, the leadership of the party avoided to do this, but if a

4 member wore one, we did not apply any political sanctions, right?

5 A. I don't remember. There were different kokades. I as a

6 participant never really paid attention. I never said to anyone, Look,

7 you are wearing Djujic's kokade, you are wearing Seselj's kokade, you are

8 wearing Draskovic's kokade, et cetera.

9 Q. This was up to the free will, to the free choice of every soldier

10 of every combatant, to wear what they pleased?

11 A. In the units that I was part of, yes.

12 Q. And the army officers sometimes tried to prevent that practice

13 and -- but mainly did right, right?

14 A. They tried, but if the overwhelming majority was against, they

15 desisted.

16 Q. So in order not to undermine the combat morale, they simply

17 tolerated that?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. Was there ever a mass production of traditional old Chetnik

20 standards, flags, with this skull and bones or with such standards, such

21 flags appeared, was this just a very unskilled manual product?

22 A. I don't know about mass production. I have one at home which I

23 paid a lad to make for me. It had the skull and bones emblem and it was

24 written with faith in God, freedom or death, Chetnik from Srem, and I

25 often gave it to people, to wedding parties in my city and they would

Page 2590

1 often carry it in front of the wedding party. It was used and that is how

2 I saw it.

3 Q. But these were all just single products. I mean, some people were

4 more skilled and the others made them in a more primitive fashion, but you

5 could hardly find two same ones?

6 A. These black Chetnik flags, yes, one could hardly find two same

7 flags of that kind.

8 Q. Sometimes they were used by the volunteers of the Serb Radical

9 Party at their own initiative but also they were used by many other

10 combatants, right?

11 A. Well, I told you, say a man would have a wedding party the next

12 day, he would be getting married, and he would have 200 guests and he

13 would ask me to lend my flag to him.

14 Q. I just wanted to clarify this. It's not something that it was the

15 exclusive property of the Serb Radical Party and its section of the Serb

16 Radical-- the Serb Chetnik Movement. Is that right?

17 A. Well, I don't know whether that was compulsory when you joined the

18 section that you'd get a flag and things like that. I'm not aware of

19 that.

20 Q. As a matter of fact, when you became a member, you didn't get

21 anything else except for a membership card of the Serb Radical Party,

22 right?

23 A. Well, I don't know. Later on they also issued this little booklet

24 saying the Serbian Chetnik Movement section.

25 Q. But this was done by local functionaries at their own initiative?

Page 2591

1 A. Yes.

2 Q. There wasn't a central organisation of this kind?

3 A. I didn't see anything that.

4 Q. You talked about fighting in Vukovar and about my visit. You

5 described me touring the front line. You described that at one point in

6 time I even shot at the enemy positions from the front line.

7 A. At Prvomajska Street.

8 Q. I was shooting at this blue building where the members of the

9 Croatian paramilitary forces were.

10 A. Well, on the other side, that was considered to be area that was

11 not in our hands.

12 Q. I seem to remember this blue building. Maybe it was a supermarket

13 or something like that.

14 A. Well, there was this building that we used to call the mini

15 market. So as far as I can remember, you were a bit further away from

16 that.

17 Q. It was at the front line of the Croat positions, right?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. And the Croat --

20 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note that it is impossible to

21 follow.

22 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

23 Q. You said that I gave encouragement to the combatants.

24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Well, we're being asked by the

25 interpreters for to you slow down. It's hard for them to keep up. Page

Page 2592

1 74, line 8. Please continue.

2 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

3 Q. Did I insist on maximum discipline of the volunteers of the Serb

4 Radical Party and the other soldiers that I came across?

5 A. It is correct-- or, rather, of course, you never encouraged a lack

6 of discipline, that is not something characteristic of you. You were

7 saying things like, Fight an honourable fight and bear in mind the legacy

8 of honourable Serb soldiers, something along those lines.

9 Q. Now I'm going to try to interpret what it was that I was saying

10 and then you are going to confirm to me whether that was the way it was or

11 not, because I remember this better, and it also has to do with a great

12 many times that I spoke.

13 Did I say at the front line, Fight like heroes, but show chivalry,

14 behaving humanely towards prisoners, civilians on the other side, women

15 and children like the Serb Knights did through history? Was that roughly

16 what I was saying?

17 A. I am aware of such speeches of yours. Now, literally whether it

18 was in that order, well, I wouldn't mind saying that that's the way it

19 was.

20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] One moment.

21 Witness, we're now addressing important issues about Vukovar. Do

22 you confirm hearing from Mr. Seselj personally that prisoners, women,

23 children, had to be protected? Did you hear him say that?

24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] We have just clarified that, that

25 Mr. Seselj tried to remind me of the speeches that he was making at the

Page 2593

1 time, and how it was that he was speaking. As I'm saying, it looks like

2 that but I did not say yes precisely. That's what I remember. I remember

3 that quotation, that sentence precisely in that way.

4 At any rate, he came to give us encouragement. He did have a

5 certain system in terms of how he did this. What Mr. Seselj said now, I

6 really don't see why I wouldn't believe him, that that is exactly what he

7 was saying, but I don't remember.

8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] But as far as you can remember,

9 did he say that prisoners, women and children had to be protected?

10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I've just said, Your Honour, that I

11 do not know in which way he spoke, but at any rate I don't remember the

12 speech in Vukovar that he was calling upon us to go and shoot someone,

13 execute someone, no.

14 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You can't therefore remember or

15 say precisely that Mr. Seselj would have in his public speeches at the

16 time, including in Vukovar, addressed the fact that prisoners, women and

17 children had to be protected?

18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I did not attend the

19 public gathering in Vukovar. All of this, I mean we heard Mr. Seselj and

20 perhaps someone else too. As he walked, as he toured the front line this

21 was very short. Whether he made a speech afterwards in Vukovar, I don't

22 know, but that is not literally the speech. Quite simply, he would be

23 talking to a group of people around him in a very loud manner

24 characteristic of him and then he was saying these things, and now he

25 explained this one sentence that he stated, but I cannot say yes, that is

Page 2594

1 exactly what you said. But I know that I do not remember that then at

2 that time when he visited Vukovar that he said, Go out and if you have

3 some prisoners, go out and execute them. No, he didn't say that, either.

4 I hope that you understand this now.

5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Well, please continue.

6 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

7 Q. What I tried to do now, to quote myself, I cannot give a verbatim

8 quote after so many years, either. Did this correspond to the essence of

9 all the things I said before the combatants? There was no speech in

10 Vukovar but did I talk to people, isn't that right, as I toured the front

11 lines?

12 A. Yes, yes, yes. Surrounded by commanders.

13 Q. Does what I said to you now correspond to the essence of what I

14 was saying there? I'm not asking for you verbatim confirmation of every

15 one of my statements. I cannot do that myself, let alone you. Was this

16 the essence of what I was saying, that the prisoners should not be

17 mistreated and...

18 MS. DAHL: The witness has been asked and answered the question

19 several times that he doesn't recall Mr. Seselj saying this. I think that

20 this is repetitive.

21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. You said that you

22 did not remember. But Mr. Seselj is dealing with the essence of what he

23 might have said.

24 So what can you say about this?

25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was my understanding of

Page 2595

1 Mr. Seselj's visit to Vukovar that time that he came to boost our morale

2 and it was not my understanding that he was trying to talk us into doing

3 something evil. I never heard you say something like that ever, go out

4 and kill whoever.

5 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

6 Q. All right. You mentioned that when I was touring the front line

7 that we came across seven dead Croatian paramilitaries, seven, four plus

8 three policemen, that is?

9 A. Well, I'm not sure now, but we had liquidated them the previous

10 day.

11 Q. In combat?

12 A. Right.

13 Q. So they were not caught and executed. They were killed in

14 combat. It's important for me to have that established here. I mentioned

15 that these corpses should be burned. Do you remember that I said burned

16 or did I say buried?

17 A. I remember that you used that word in order to prevent a disease

18 from breaking out, that they should be gotten rid of, burned.

19 Q. As an experienced soldier, Mr. Stoparic, you should understand

20 that if somebody had burned seven or nine corpses there that all of

21 Vukovar would have smelled?

22 A. They were not burned.

23 Q. Well, I'm not that stupid not to know the burning of seven or nine

24 corpses causes disastrous problems for the people who are there.

25 A. Well, quite simply, well, I don't even know why it was that I

Page 2596

1 remember that. Probably I was listening and I needed to hear you,

2 actually you -- I thought that you would really praise us for this kind of

3 action, but after that, I realised that we didn't do everything right.

4 Now, why this is in my thoughts, the word "burned," I really don't want to

5 accuse anyone, believe me. I just seem to remember that.

6 Q. What I remember is that I said that the corpses should be buried

7 as soon as possible in order to prevent a disease from breaking out.

8 A. I cannot say that I wasn't the one who made a mistake or perhaps

9 later on when recounting this, somebody had perhaps added a sentence of

10 their own, that's the assumption, but I really had no intention of

11 including something that you had not said. After all, it is 1991 and one

12 has to remember all of that now.

13 Q. However, the point was to prevent the outbreak of a disease.

14 A. Not only of a disease, but also the cattle would start eating

15 corpses if they were there for too long.

16 Q. Pigs?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. Dogs?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. All right. You mentioned -- I'm going to put one more question to

21 you and probably it is time to take the break, and then after the break

22 we're going to move on to the situation regarding Ovcar.

23 You mentioned that when a year after the liberation of Vukovar,

24 there was a celebration, it was in the centre of town, wasn't it?

25 A. By the hotel.

Page 2597

1 Q. I was there too?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. After this celebration, we went to Stanko Vujanovic's cafe, we

4 were invited there, right?

5 A. Yes. I sat there, too. No, not quite literally close to you but

6 a few tables away.

7 Q. I was there and then my associates from the leadership of the

8 party and then Captain Radic -- Major Radic afterwards.

9 A. I don't remember Radic exactly.

10 Q. There were some other officers and I remember him, too.

11 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note, both people are speaking at

12 the same time now.

13 Interpreter's note that a considerable portion is missing now.

14 A. I just heard about this from him, that you promised to have a

15 drunk when we win. Otherwise, you don't drink; I know that.

16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Ms. Dahl.

17 MS. DAHL: [Previous translation continues] ... Can we ask

18 Mr. Seselj to go back a couple of questions, because the interpreters

19 indicated that they were unable to follow the speaker, and the overlap has

20 prevented an accurate record.

21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes. Mr. Seselj.

22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I hope that, Mr. President, this is

23 not being taken from my time, because what I'm worried about the most is

24 the amount of time that I will have available. I want to have all details

25 clarified during the cross-examination of this witness. But briefly I'm

Page 2598

1 going to repeat this.

2 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

3 Q. When the first anniversary of the liberation of Vukovar was being

4 commemorated, I come to a celebration in the centre of town. After that,

5 we were invited to the cafe owned by Stanko Vujanovic. Then we sat there,

6 we talked, we had a few drinks, most of them soft drinks, perhaps somebody

7 drank alcohol, too, and then we went our separate ways. That's the

8 essence. Is that right? I interpret this right, your words?

9 A. As far as I can remember, that is the way it was.

10 Q. When I was in Vukovar, while I was touring the front line, did you

11 walk all the time along with these people who were going with me?

12 A. The last thing I saw was when you wanted to shoot and when little

13 Dzo - do you remember little Dzo - Dzo Valjarevic [phoen], do you remember

14 his nickname, whatever his real name was? He stood in front of you and

15 you said to him, No, you are so small that you cannot protect me if

16 anything should happen and them probably Kameni send him -- rather, went

17 to the front line.

18 Q. Little Dzo at the front line stood in front of me in order to

19 protect me from enemy fire, right?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. And I made a bit of a joke, saying that you are so small that you

22 cannot protect me, something like that?

23 A. Yes, yes.

24 Q. However, there is another thing that is important for me. Since

25 you were over there among the escorts at the front line, did you ever hear

Page 2599

1 me during the fighting for Vukovar during that visit, that I had a meeting

2 with the officers in Stanko Vujanovic's house? Have you ever heard of

3 anything like that? I really don't know how long you stayed in Vukovar

4 at all and where you went.

5 A. Well, I spent a night there, somewhere near the front line. I'm

6 going to remind you that during the night by that house, the agricultural

7 air force of the Croatian side threw a heater full of explosive. We

8 thought that that was because of your visit.

9 Q. Yes. But it was said that that is why it was done, because I was

10 there, and Milorad Albijanic [phoen], an official from some Serb

11 association from Kosovo slept there with me?

12 A. I don't know.

13 Q. Later on there was a joke that I just turned to the other side and

14 went on sleeping and he got up and could not sleep any longer, so we

15 laughed about that the next day. And then there is this photograph as

16 well of the well-known Serb photographer as I'm washing my face naked to

17 the waist in front of that house on the following morning.

18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] It's time for the break.

19 Mr. Seselj, you will resume after the break with the problem of

20 the photograph. It's 20 to 6.00.

21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can your -- can your staff have

22 these documents distributed? I have copies for the members of the Trial

23 Chamber and a copy for the Prosecutor and a copy for the witness. I gave

24 these documents on the 3rd of January to have them translated, but the

25 Mr. Doraiswamy told me that it can only be translated by the end of

Page 2600

1 January, and I need to use this during the cross-examination of this

2 witness, so could he please be given a copy so that he could prepare for

3 that, too, and could the Prosecutor and the members of the Trial Chamber

4 be given copies as well?

5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The document is being handed

6 around and we will resume after the break.

7 --- Recess taken at 5.43 p.m.

8 --- On resuming at 6.01 p.m.

9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The hearing is resumed.

10 Mr. Seselj, just before the break, you handed us eight documents

11 and told us that these eight documents couldn't be translated by the

12 translation department, the CLSS. I understand that the CLSS was unable

13 to translate this. But when this happens, before the hearing, you can

14 give these documents to the Trial Chamber and the Prosecution, even in

15 B/C/S, so that the Prosecution can get ready for it, and the

16 Prosecution -- in the Prosecutor's office, you know, there are people who

17 speak B/C/S and who can know exactly what the document is about and then

18 they can get prepared. That way you're sure that the Prosecution will not

19 raise an objection regarding this -- any document. Of course, I'm not

20 blaming you. You asked for the CLSS to translate this early in January

21 and they were not able to do that. We'll try to make do.

22 Just tell the witness, Take this document. In such-and-such

23 paragraph, you can find this or that. What do you think of it. And then

24 we will see what the scope of the document is.

25 Ms. Dahl.

Page 2601

1 MS. DAHL: I'm sorry, I object to Mr. Seselj using these documents

2 without providing a copy that is in one of the working languages of the

3 Tribunal. I can't read them, and therefore, he can't use them. Sorry.

4 We've had sufficient recesses during January that he could have pointed

5 out these exact ones to put priority on them or even announce the problem

6 at the beginning of today's session to have rough translations made. And

7 I don't think it is appropriate to shift the translation burden to OTP

8 staff.

9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. President, may I be allowed to

10 say something on the subject?

11 Judges, I think that the same yard-stick should be applied to me

12 and to the representative of the indictment, to the Prosecution, and

13 towards me, that yard-stick should be even boarder, because in these

14 proceedings I must be privileged, as the accused, compared to the

15 Prosecution with all its apparatus standing behind it. And I would like

16 to remind you that when we had Oberschall, the expert witness, that the

17 Prosecution, the day before the hearing, provided a document about his

18 interview and testimony without even providing me with the additional

19 documents in English to this day, the part that I -- that I launched a

20 protest for them being in English, and I said why were they in English so

21 I don't use them.

22 Secondly, I don't have to base my examination on these documents

23 at all, but you must apply the same criterion to me and to the

24 Prosecution. That is the bare minimum of a requirement.

25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The Trial Chamber believes that

Page 2602

1 the criterion should be the same on both parties.

2 Now, without putting the blame on anyone, on January 3rd you sent

3 these documents to the translation department. That was 20 days ago, and

4 this document has not been translated, even though 20 days have elapsed.

5 It's not your fault.

6 Secondly, Prosecution is telling us that it raises an objection

7 because it did not obtain the document in one of the Tribunal's working

8 languages. You're absolutely correct in saying so, Ms. Dahl. But the

9 translation department belongs to the Registrar. The Registrar is a body

10 in this Tribunal. So is the -- the OTP, so are the Judges. Obviously the

11 Tribunal is not functioning correctly. It's not up to the accused to be

12 subjected to this failure. So we need to kind some kind of practical

13 solution, and the practical solution is that in the future, Mr. Seselj, if

14 he has documents in Serbian which were not translated, he will hand them

15 over to you as quickly as possible, and it will be up to you to find a

16 solution.

17 As a professional, even if you don't know anything about the

18 document, just like I do, wait for the questions, wait for the answer of

19 the witness, and then we can see, on a case by case basis, what is the

20 context of this document.

21 We don't know yet what the question is going to be. We have no

22 idea what topic the accused is going to deal with; but as a professional,

23 I can face any situation. I'm not going to be put off balance just

24 because suddenly I'm handed a document in a language that I cannot read.

25 I know the question will be translated, I know the answers -- the witness

Page 2603

1 is going to answer, and since the cross-examination will continue

2 tomorrow, you and everyone helping you will have the possibility of

3 translating the document overnight, and you can ask additional questions

4 during the re-direct.

5 It is true that we're working in two official languages, but there

6 are some situations where, of course, you're not to blame, I'm not to

7 blame, but unfortunately, the translation department was not able to do

8 the job. We're not going to stop the trial, saying let's wait for these

9 documents to be translated and have questions about these documents.

10 I don't see what you could say as an answer, but you have the

11 floor.

12 MS. DAHL: Thank you, Your Honour.

13 My suggestion is that we have the translations completed

14 overnight, perhaps. We have not heard what the delay is or what the

15 anticipated time to translate them is, or we can also go into private

16 session. Because I think it's unsafe to proceed where I am unable to

17 anticipate problems based on a review of the document and I consider, with

18 respect, that we serve different roles and that the willingness of the

19 Bench to proceed with a document it can't read is distinctly different

20 than disadvantaging the Prosecution's ability to articulate proper

21 objections and protect sensitive information and avoid error.

22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] May I be allowed to say something?

23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, these eight

24 documents, are these statements, testimonies? It seems that it is the

25 case so that these documents have been certified and authenticated.

Page 2604

1 Could you tell us what these documents about? Are there mention

2 of protected witnesses in them? I know nothing about these documents.

3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] No, Judge. First of all, I'm

4 categorically opposed to the request made by the Prosecution, and then I'd

5 like to remind you, once again, that in the cross-examination of expert

6 witness Oberschall, well, I conducted the cross-examination without having

7 received a proposal of the very important documents to this day which the

8 Prosecution brought forth at the very last moment during the proceedings.

9 Secondly, here we're talking about statements by a bus driver; his

10 name is Nikola Tumic; Drago Mrdja, Savan Vidovic, Zoran Medic, Mrko

11 Tutsakovic, Semo Cojdar, Bogdan Petrovic, Vaso Djurdjovic. That is to

12 say, statements which were given before a court in Serbia and have been

13 authenticated, and from it, we can see that these were bus drivers and, as

14 such, they sent back all of the volunteers, took back of the volunteers,

15 the volunteers of the Serbian Radical Party, from Vukovar to Serbia

16 immediately after Vukovar's liberation, and Vukovar was liberated on the

17 18th of November. And they transported the volunteers on the 18th, 19th,

18 and 20th of November, taking them to Serbia. And Ovcara took place in the

19 night between 20th and 21st of November.

20 So I wanted to use this document -- these documents in the

21 cross-examination of this witness. If you're not going to allow me to do

22 so, I won't insist. I will throw them away. I'm just asking to be

23 treated equally with -- as -- an equal attitude towards me and the

24 Prosecution.

25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You're right in telling us about

Page 2605

1 the Oberschall precedent, and you're telling us these are bus drivers.

2 We're going to relate how they drove the volunteers back.

3 I have a excellent memory, and I do remember that at one point in

4 time you told us that, regarding Vukovar, the volunteers came back before

5 the events that occurred during the night from the 20th to the 21st, and

6 these documents obviously -- or seem to prove that your volunteers had

7 left the premises before crimes were committed.

8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] In the night between the 20th

9 and 21st, the crime took place at Ovcara, the execution of 200 Croatian

10 prisoners, and the volunteers were on their way back on the 18th, 19th,

11 and 20th, just to be precise on that score.

12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, that is absolutely what I

13 said. I said that, according to you, these documents would prove that the

14 volunteers had left the premises before the crimes were committed. That's

15 what I said. Maybe there was a translation error.

16 So, please, ask your questions, starting from this and we'll play

17 it by ear.

18 At this point in time, I have no reason to believe that these

19 documents are authentical, and then according to the content, with the

20 questions and the answers of the witnesses, we will see. The witness was

21 there, he was on the premises, and he can confirm whether these documents

22 seem to be telling the truth or not.

23 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] But I have a number of questions to

24 ask and we'll get to that in due course.

25 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

Page 2606

1 Q. Mr. Stoparic, indirectly you told me that you had never heard of a

2 meeting of mine with the officers of the Guards Brigade in Stanko

3 Vujanovic's house when I visited Vukovar during the war. Have I

4 understood that correctly?

5 A. I don't remember that.

6 Q. You heard of a meeting like that? But you do remember meeting in

7 Stanko Vujanovic's cafe one year after the liberation of Vukovar. Is that

8 right?

9 A. Yes, I understand that.

10 Q. Perhaps you don't understand the gist of my question. I'm asking

11 you so that you could give me an answer because there's a false witness

12 who has moved this meeting a year forward in Stanko Vujanovic's cafe.

13 That's why I needed your answer, just to let you know why I'm insisting on

14 this. You know Milan Lancuzanin, Kameni, the commander of the Leva

15 Supoderica Detachment, you know him well?

16 A. I could say that, well yes.

17 Q. Was he a strict commander?

18 A. He was to me.

19 Q. What about towards others, I assume that he was strict towards

20 them too?

21 A. I'm talking about myself as a commander of a platoon.

22 Q. All right, fine. Did he prohibit any type of mistreatment of

23 prisoner of war their execution the maltreatment of women, children,

24 anything like that?

25 A. He never ordered any mistreatment and if he would learn about

Page 2607

1 something, and the example of this unfortunate Topola.

2 Q. Expelled him from the detachment?

3 A. Yes, he did.

4 Q. Could he have done anything else but to send him away?

5 A. Well, he couldn't have shot him. All he do have done was send him

6 away.

7 Q. And Topola was suspected of having killed a young girl. Is that

8 right?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. You tried to investigate that but did not succeed?

11 A. Well there was intensive action going on.

12 Q. You mean the intensity of the fighting to investigate fully?

13 A. Yes, that's right it was forgotten. The man was forgotten.

14 Q. But anyway he was sent away. He stayed in Vukovar. But he wasn't

15 in Leva Supoderica?

16 THE INTERPRETER: Could the speakers kindly slow down, please, for

17 the benefit of one and all. Thank you.

18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Just a minute, you're speaking

19 much too fast. As Judge Harhoff told you, advised you, count to five

20 before you start answering.

21 JUDGE HARHOFF: And can I add, that these proceedings will not

22 make any meaning unless the Bench is able to understand what is being

23 said. So in your own interests, try and keep it slow.

24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I apologise, Your Honours. Yes, I

25 will do my best, and I'll wait to see the translation come up on the

Page 2608

1 screen. My adrenaline is up.

2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] [Previous translation

3 continues] ... for answering you said something that almost -- that

4 surprises me and I would like to look into this.

5 Regarding Topola and Kameni, you're saying -- you say they

6 couldn't do anything. So in military terms I'm quite surprised. If a

7 serviceman commits any kind of thing, you know there are procedures.

8 There can be an investigation, there's a military prosecutor,

9 investigative judge. I even think that in wartime, I haven't looked into

10 the military code of the former Yugoslavia, but I think that you could

11 have martial courts, you know, that are convened immediately and that try

12 the accused immediately and if there is a capital punishment, the accused

13 can be executed if found guilty.

14 So when you say that Kameni and Topola could do nothing, could you

15 please give me an explanation.

16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] First of all, Your Honour, to paint

17 the picture. Kameni, as the commander, or he was komandir. And myself

18 as the platoon commander. He appointed me as platoon commander and at

19 that time I wasn't even a reserve officer. He was a reserve officer and

20 he had some knowledge; and I should have had because I did my regular

21 military service. But what I want to say is this, the point of what I'm

22 saying is this, we as officers, we're not professional officers of the

23 Yugoslav People's Army most probably a professional soldier or an officer

24 of the Yugoslav People's Army would now how to behave and what to do but

25 quite simply the situation was such that there was many actions going on

Page 2609

1 and perhaps Kameni did send up this information to his superiors. I don't

2 know about that, but I said that he could not do anything. There was

3 nothing he could do. He couldn't take over the power in his own hands and

4 that he penalise, be the judge and jury in this case and punish someone.

5 So the best thing he could do was to exclude him from the unit, to send

6 him away. There was no other practice open to us that we knew about. We

7 weren't trained as active duty officers ever.

8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well thank you for your

9 answer.

10 Mr. Seselj.

11 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

12 Q. Mr. Stoparic, do you happen to know that during all these wars

13 that there was ever a court martial sitting and that anybody was executed

14 for any crimes committed?

15 A. No.

16 Q. Did anything like that happen on the Croatian or the Muslim side

17 have you ever heard of anything like that happen?

18 A. I doubt that anything like that ever happen.

19 Q. So we agree that in this war, court martials did not operate

20 anywhere and nobody was executed for any crimes or offences. Is that

21 right?

22 A. No, I know of no example on any side.

23 Q. All right, fine. Now we can lament over the fact that that was

24 not the case. But that's how things stood. Very well, Mr. Stoparic.

25 Now let's go back to the question of Ovcara. You know that when

Page 2610

1 Vukovar was liberated on the 18th of November, that the JNA immediately

2 endeavoured to reduce the number of men in the area because much of the

3 man power was hampering normalisation of life in the area?

4 A. They tried to establish civil control or civilian control in town

5 and immediately after the fall of Vukovar the Guards Brigade was

6 withdrawing from the territory and another brigade coming in.

7 Q. Yes. And they started transporting the volunteers back to Serbia.

8 Isn't that right?

9 A. Yes they did start that in Leva Supoderica over several days.

10 Q. In three days.

11 A. It was disbanded many stayed on but during that week many left.

12 Q. But in the space of three days the bulk left for Serbia?

13 A. Yes, the bulk did.

14 Q. There were those who wanted to stay on and live in Vukovar. Isn't

15 that right?

16 A. Yes, I myself remained for a time precisely because I didn't need

17 organised transport because I lived 30 kilometres away from my own home.

18 Q. But that's why they didn't manage to write down your participation

19 war in the Guards Brigade because the Guards Brigade withdrew, so you had

20 to go to Belgrade to command there. Isn't that right?

21 A. Well, I did get some certificate a certificate of some kind in

22 Velepromet proving that I was member of Leva Supoderica, but I gave that

23 to a corporal in the guards brigade who paid out my salary during my stay

24 in Vukovar.

25 Q. A moment ago you mentioned little Dzo, Mali Dzo who was a

Page 2611

1 volunteer. Do you remember that he stayed on to live in Vukovar?

2 A. He lived in Vukovar for a years. I think Solobodan Katic too?

3 Q. Yes, Slobodan Katic lived in Vukovar.

4 A. He got married?

5 Q. Slobodan Katic was in the Territorial Defence of Vukovar,

6 something like that. And Mali Dzo -- little Dzo opened a book shop, did

7 he not?

8 A. Yes.

9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes I will slow down. I will slow

10 down but my promises might seem to be a little funny when I forget to keep

11 my promises during the heat of the cross-examination.

12 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

13 Q. I for example remember that at the headquarters of the Serbian

14 Radical Party, we presented little Dzo with many of my books to sell in

15 his own book store and that he could finance his livelihood. We didn't

16 ask him to give us any money from the sale of those books. I remember

17 that detail. Slobodan Katic stayed on to; you confirmed that yourself.

18 And his function in the Territorial Defence? Well, he requested

19 Ljubisa Petkovic to put forward the promotion of certain officers; isn't

20 that right?

21 A. Yes, we saw a document to that effect, I believe.

22 Q. Yes we did. We saw a paper to that effect. Now Ljubisa Petkovic,

23 to whom could he have made that proposal except to the corresponding

24 service in the General Staff? Was there anyone else he could make those

25 proposals to?

Page 2612

1 A. Well, I think that's what I said, something along those lines.

2 Q. Fine. So it was common knowledge that Ljubisa Petkovic,

3 representing the Serb Radical Party, was in charge of contacts with the

4 General Staff, liaising with the General Staff, and that he had firm

5 cooperation with the head of the personnel department or the department

6 for mobilisation, whatever it was called. But everybody knew about that;

7 isn't that right?

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. That he could make proposals like that? All right, fine.

10 Now, you have described here the behaviour and conduct of Kameni

11 when the crime of Ovcara took place. You were an eye-witness, were you

12 not?

13 A. I don't know that a crime had been committed. I didn't know at

14 the time. All I knew was that something was going on .

15 Q. But Kameni was very excited, he was angry, he was nervous, right?

16 A. Well, you could describe it that way.

17 Q. And by his demeanour he showed that something terrible had

18 happened, which should not have happened in any -- under any

19 circumstances?

20 A. Let me explain. I socialised with Kameni after the war a lot,

21 almost on a daily basis, so it is difficult for me to testify at times

22 because I don't want to say something that he told me about later on. But

23 even what he told me later on coincides with what I saw at the time.

24 Q. Now did Kameni always condemn the crime?

25 A. Yes, he always said that it was quite ludicrous.

Page 2613

1 Q. That it should never have happened?

2 A. Yes, that kind of meaning.

3 Q. Now do you link Kameni with the crime? Do you think that Kameni

4 could have taken part in that crime since you knew him very well?

5 A. I said many times and I think I repeated it here in court that it

6 is my personal conviction that he was not involved, and I even try to

7 speak about judgment from Serbia where it says that he didn't kill anybody

8 there or whatever it says in the judgment. I just read about it in the

9 papers, in actual fact.

10 Q. And how much did you know at that time about the situation in

11 Serbia? Was it quite clear to at that time that the special regime court

12 in Belgrade had actually convicted the innocent Kameni to -- sentence him

13 to 20 years of imprisonment only in order to create an artificial link

14 between me myself as his friend and Ovcara. Is that clear to you?

15 A. I'm almost certain and I'm almost convinced that he is innocent

16 and as to the wanting to establish a link, I cannot say anything about

17 that.

18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, you wear two hats.

19 You're an accused but, at the same time you're also representing yourself

20 as a lawyer. And now I'm addressing the lawyer in you.

21 You mentioned this judgment convicting Kameni. I have this

22 question. In Serbia, judgments in criminal cases, do they have to be

23 reasoned or is there absolutely no grounds given, because if he was

24 convicted to 20 years, I suppose that that had to be reasoned. One has to

25 account for this conviction.

Page 2614

1 So my question is a simple one. This judgment, in theory you must

2 have it, is it a reasoned one or not?

3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Judge, that judgment was reasoned in

4 language that was not quite coherent, but the most important thing is that

5 it was overturned by the supreme Court both in relation to the part which

6 refers to Kameni and that the entire -- that there was a new trial. This

7 new trial is still going on. So this orchestrated judgment was

8 overturned.

9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Well, so you're telling us that

10 the Supreme Court ordered a new trial which would explain why there is

11 currently a trial going on. So legally speaking, we do not know whether

12 Mr. Kameni is guilty or not.

13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Legally speaking we don't know. But

14 here the witness is not speaking as a jurist. The witness here appears as

15 an eye-witness to certain events, and he is actually relating his own

16 experience in that connection and the information that he has in that

17 connection. Of course, I have the right to put him some questions that

18 are a bit more leading in the cross-examination stage.

19 Q. Mr. Stoparic, did the Leva Supoderica Detachment have any

20 connection with Velepromet?

21 A. I went to Velepromet several times to replenish our food supplies

22 and for such things there was always the military police there and some

23 representatives of the civilian authorities. But I don't know of any

24 links of the kind that you ask about.

25 Q. So Velepromet was a depot, a warehouse, a place where prisoners of

Page 2615

1 war would be detained before being dispatched to the prison in Sremska

2 Mitrovica. Is that right? Are you following me?

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. Where the civilian authorities of Slavonia Branja Western Srem et

5 cetera? You never even posted guards there from your detachment, right?

6 A. No, we were combatants we were combatants, we were sentinels at

7 the front line.

8 Q. So you confirm my statement that there was no connection between

9 you and Velepromet except that you went there to get your supplies and

10 necessities for daily life?

11 A. That's right.

12 Q. And if you did take a Croatian soldier prisoner you would then

13 assign him to Velepromet?

14 A. Yes, to the military.

15 Q. To the military and the army would take them where it was -- he

16 was to be taken?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. And you never kept a soldier yourself prisoner?

19 A. That's right.

20 Q. As I understood your statement Topola actually snatched a prisoner

21 from Velepromet?

22 A. Later.

23 Q. You said in the examination-in-chief that in a way he stole this

24 prisoner, snatched him as it were, from the place?

25 A. Yes.

Page 2616

1 Q. So this has nothing to do with your detachment?

2 A. When he snatched this prisoner -- I apologise, I don't know

3 precisely or exactly, but I think it was on saint -- on the archangel's

4 day.

5 Q. That is the 21st of November. That is the day of the liberation

6 of Vukovar? That is after Ovcara, right?

7 A. He was not a member -- a member after that?

8 Q. That is several days after the liberation of Vukovar?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. Do you know that Saint Archangel Michael is celebrated on the 21st

11 of November?

12 A. That is not my patron saint, but this person actually snatched a

13 prisoner and took him as a gift to the person whose patron saint of -- he

14 was celebrating.

15 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter is unable to follow the

16 parties...

17 MS. DAHL: Your Honour. I would like this to be more than a

18 private conversation between the witness and the accused. I really need

19 them to allow for interpretation, otherwise, as the Judge Harhoff

20 mentioned before, it excludes the Bench from receiving the information.

21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, we were -- you were

22 very fast here in dealing with this topic, which is an important one.

23 This Topola, Witness, it seems to appear, from listening to

24 questions and answers, that he stole something from a detainee in

25 Velepromet. But the theft and the date of the theft seems to coincide

Page 2617

1 with the Saint Michael's day, the archangel's day, which is later than the

2 21st.

3 Therefore, when Topola did this theft, he no longer belonged to

4 the Leva Supoderica Detachment. Apparently most of the members of the

5 detachment had left in buses, and he stayed with a legal status that we

6 shall determine later on, but on that day, he was no longer a member of

7 the unit you were in charge of.

8 Is that how we should understand things?

9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Several days before the official

10 fall or liberation of Vukovar, he was removed by the unit commander.

11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] And why was he removed? Not

12 because of the theft in Velepromet, because that occurred later, didn't

13 it?

14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. He was removed because the --

15 he was suspected of having raped a girl, a women, and having thrown her

16 into a well.

17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] That's the reason why he had

18 been removed. And if we understand Mr. Seselj's questions properly, the

19 theft in Velepromet occurred after the date of the 21st. Anyway, after he

20 had been removed.

21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.

22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So I think that is a little

23 clear now.

24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Perhaps it is my fault, Judge, for

25 speaking too fast. He snatched a Croatian prisoner. He unlawfully took

Page 2618

1 him out of the Velepromet warehouse intending to kill him. That is the

2 sense of Mr. Stoparic's statement in the examination in chief. It was not

3 a theft of property. He unlawfully took out a prisoner. It was a figure

4 of speech.

5 He took him out unlawfully and that took place several days after

6 the fall of Vukovar. That is what is of the essence for us right now. So

7 not even that event can be associated with the Leva Supoderica Detachment,

8 right.

9 A. The only link is that he went into the house of this person who

10 was celebrating and that he was a member.

11 Q. And the only link is that the Chinese who was -- that Kinez who

12 was in your staff actually saved this prisoner?

13 A. He informed us of what was happening but nobody dared actually

14 speak back, talk back, contradict Topola.

15 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreter is very sorry but the

16 interpreter did not actually hear the witness.

17 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

18 Q. Mr. Stoparic, did look at these statements which I gave you during

19 the break?

20 A. I asked to but I was not allowed to take them out of the

21 courtroom. I did take a look while I was waiting for the Bench to come

22 in.

23 Q. You see that this -- these are statements of bus drivers who were

24 taking volunteers back to Serbia?

25 A. Yes.

Page 2619

1 Q. Did you notice here that the driver explicitly say that the bulk

2 of the volunteers were from the Serbian Radical Party; that they were

3 disciplined, that none of them had weapons; that they were escorted at all

4 times by the military police; that they were searched on entering Serbia;

5 that even official dogs would be used for searches. That is to say

6 trained dogs who could detect weapons by smell, the smell of the grease

7 used to lubricate the weapons or the smell of black powder and similar.

8 Did you see that here?

9 A. I read the first two statements completely.

10 Q. They are similar more or less. You could give your comment on the

11 basis of these first two statements. Do you think that they are truthful?

12 A. How the volunteers fared when they were going home from Vukovar is

13 something that I don't know, but it is certainly my experience when I was

14 passing through Serbia on a bus as a volunteer that there were always

15 strict controls including of weaponry both when we were going into the

16 terrain and vice versa it would be carried out, I mean these checks by

17 either the civilian or the military police, and this is also indicated by

18 the driver. And what the driver says is most probably true, that this is

19 the way they were taken back to Serbia.

20 Q. Not a single volunteer was drunk, according to these statements

21 right? Also during the searches there was no -- there were no grounds to

22 detain or arrest any of them or similar?

23 A. They probably had nothing on there which was prohibited. They

24 were not drunk or I'm not sure. Maybe they may have been celebrating

25 because of the fall of Vukovar.

Page 2620

1 Q. They also say, some of the drives that they have no technical

2 goods with them. Was there any control to establish whether anyone of

3 them had stolen any washing machines or cooking ranges or TV sets.

4 A. Yes, it was.

5 Q. After the fall -- or liberation of Vukovar, was it strict -- was

6 it strict in connection with the liberation of Vukovar?

7 A. At this border crossing point where they were crossing there was

8 control and check carried out but near Sid there at the border it was more

9 relaxed. Later it grew into a more strict border crossing point.

10 Q. Could anyone take out any stolen goods?

11 A. At this crossing yes, but not always.

12 Q. Do you know of any instances of Serbian Radical Party members

13 exporting anything stolen from Vukovar?

14 A. Well, had I seen that?

15 Q. No, had you seen that or do you know for sure that they did

16 something.

17 A. In an organised fashion --

18 Q. Yes, because something of value has to be organised. If is it of

19 no value can you put it your pocket, but we're talking about some more --

20 some technical equipment that is worth more, then it had to be organised?

21 A. Well, I didn't see anything of the kind.

22 Q. So you didn't see that.

23 Well, Mr. Stoparic, upon returning to Vukovar, according to your

24 statement, in the beginning of year 2000 joined the Serbian Radical Party,

25 right?

Page 2621

1 A. I'm not quite sure what the date was when I became a member of the

2 Serbian Radical Party, but I know that that took place at Milenko

3 Petrovic's house, which does not mean that there was an office already in

4 place, but this is where I saw him.

5 Q. We do not need the exact date. Was it in the beginning of 1992?

6 A. I don't know. I may have been joined even in Vukovar.

7 Q. In Vukovar?

8 A. I cannot remember. It may have been the case.

9 Q. Yes it could have been that, because Kameni also joined in

10 Vukovar?

11 A. Well, maybe, I'm not quite sure where I joined.

12 Q. Did anyone prescribe the obligation for all members of the Leva

13 Supoderica Detachment to have to join the Serb Radical Party was that

14 compulsory?

15 A. Well, we the commanders, the komandiri, we all did that as a rule.

16 Q. But was anyone forcing you, did anyone coerce you do to that or

17 did you do that on a voluntary basis because you wanted to?

18 A. No, I wanted to. I explicitly wanted to.

19 Q. And the next time you went to the front as a volunteer of the

20 Serbian Radical Party, right. That -- we're now already talking about

21 1992.

22 A. Yes, I did go. I don't know to which terrain.

23 Q. I shall remind you that was the unit which was led by Branislav

24 Vakic in Herzegovina. Did you not?

25 A. Or perhaps before that, perhaps I was before that in -- I took a

Page 2622

1 flight from Belgrade to Bihac and then from Bihac we went -- I went to

2 Bosansko Grahovo and that terrain, and that is quite possible that that

3 took place before that.

4 Q. Could have you gone to Bosanski Grahovo as a member -- as a

5 volunteer of the Serbian Radical Party or a member of some other

6 formation?

7 A. From Bubanj Potok to the airport and then to Bihac.

8 Q. But not as a member of the Serb Radical Party?

9 A. With a mediation of the Serbian Radical Party.

10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Just a moment, you're going too

11 fast.

12 Before going go back to that question I realised that Mr. Seselj

13 asked a question and you didn't quite answer it and it may be a relevant

14 question.

15 He asked you whether all volunteers who were members of the

16 Leva Supoderica Detachment were members of the Serbian Radical Party. You

17 answered at line 6, page 102, Yes, the commanders. But I would like to

18 know - and I think that was the meaning of the question - did all the

19 members or were all the members of that unit members of the Serbian

20 Radical Party, or were there some like you or others but not all of them,

21 as far as you know. Were there members in that unit who were not members

22 of the Serbian Radical Party?

23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, no. Not all of them were

24 members of the Serb Radical Party. Many perhaps belonged to other

25 parties. But most of them did not belong to a single party, quite simply

Page 2623

1 people who considered themselves to be patriots and wanted to go into the

2 war availed themselves of the opportunity provided by the Serb Radical

3 Party to be sent to the front line. Now whether they joined up later, I

4 don't know.

5 So members of Leva Supoderica did not necessarily have to be

6 members of the Radical Party and we did not put questions like that, who

7 was a member of whose party.

8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You answered in part, saying

9 that there were in that unit members who belonged to other political

10 parties.

11 However, were there in that unit soldiers who did not belong to

12 any political party, none at all? But as they were patriots they had

13 decided to join that unit? Because you can be a patriot without being a

14 member of a party.

15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.

16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Can you give us any names of

17 soldiers in that unit who were not members of any party?

18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can. An exceptionally good and

19 brave man from Novi Sad, a squad leader, his name was Sasa. He was not a

20 member of any party and I don't believe he is to this day.

21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.

22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I don't think I should move on to

23 the question of Herzegovina because I assume that we don't have much time

24 left for today so I would like to move on to that tomorrow. Judge, would

25 you please be so kind as to tell me how much time we have?

Page 2624

1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I can see the clock. Ten

2 minutes.

3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.

4 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

5 Q. Mr. Stoparic, you know that the Serb literary language consists of

6 two dialects: The Ekavian and Ikavian?

7 A. Yes.

8 Q. You were born in the Ekavian area. You always spoke Ekavian,

9 right?

10 A. Yes. That's the area I was born in and that's how I speak.

11 Q. But you do understand Ikavian?

12 A. Yes, I do.

13 Q. And there's also some new self-styled Croatian words that were

14 artificially inserted in the language and that neither you nor I

15 understand, right?

16 A. Sometimes when I watch Croatian television it does happen that I

17 don't understand something, but in the context of a sentence I tend to

18 understand.

19 Q. Do you know what the word Postrojba means?

20 A. Unit.

21 Q. Do you know what Satnija means?

22 THE INTERPRETER: Kindly slow down.

23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] [Previous translation continues] ...

24 Regiment.

25 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

Page 2625

1 Q. Regiment? No, Mr. Stoparic, it means company.

2 A. I know it's a military term.

3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Wait a minute, Mr. Seselj,

4 because the words in your language are not in the transcript. It might be

5 important for them to be. Then have you got to spell the words then it

6 will be noted in the transcript, it will be recorded; otherwise you can

7 see the sign showing that the word is not recorded and it's ignored.

8 Of course, if you think it is important, if you don't, you can go

9 ahead.

10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] It is very important, Judge.

11 First of all, I asked Mr. Stoparic whether he knew what the word

12 Postrojba means; he did know although this is a newly invented Croatian

13 expression. He said that it meant unit. And then I asked him whether he

14 know what Satnija means. S-a-t-n-i-j-a. He didn't know. His answer was

15 that it meant regiment and I said to him that it meant company.

16 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]

17 Q. Now what is the rank of Satznik? It must be captain, right?

18 A. Yes, well, if Satnija is company then it has to be up to major at

19 the most.

20 Q. It cannot be anything else -- captain. Mr. Stoparic, you do not

21 use these terms Tocno, Promoviranje, Pozornost. Do you know what these

22 words mean, the word Pozornost?

23 A. To look carefully, to observe carefully.

24 Q. To be careful, to pay attention but you don't understand -- but

25 you don't that expression?

Page 2626

1 A. I don't.

2 Q. Now, when the Prosecutor was preparing you for this evidence, they

3 were proofing you for days, four hours a day for several days. They gave

4 you a statement to sign where, if they gave you a statement that included

5 Satnija, Pozornost, Kolovoz, Ozujak, would you have corrected that

6 straight away, would you have said immediately that could not have been

7 your statement because you never spoke that way?

8 A. Well, I speak the Serbian language. I can understand Kolovoz as

9 asphalt or road but I don't speak that way.

10 Q. Kolovoz means August in this sense, the month of August.

11 A. It also means road.

12 Q. Yes. So you would warn the Prosecution to the effect that these

13 are not your words and that they could not be included in your statement?

14 A. Well, I don't talk that way so how can that be my statement.

15 Q. You would have said straight away, Ms. Dahl, I don't talk that way

16 and it cannot be in my statement. Is that what you would have said?

17 A. Most probably that is what I would have said.

18 Q. However, what I have here is your statement.

19 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] One moment, please. Mr. Seselj

20 is now addressing an important issue which is the technique used in

21 examination. If I understood properly, the accused noted in your

22 statement, signed in your own language, that there were words that you

23 would not use and you named quite a few of them. These words can be

24 found, however, in your witness statement, in your language, which is

25 B/C/S.

Page 2627

1 So based on that, if what has been said is right, I have a

2 question as to the way your statement was drafted. The investigators,

3 when they were listening to you, did they first listen and then drafted

4 the written statement but by putting into it words that you would not use,

5 such as -- or words that a Croat would use. Is that how things happened?

6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The investigators have interpreters

7 along with them. They put questions, I answer, and then these

8 interpreters interpret at that same moment into English and into what you

9 call B/C/S.

10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] We've got the names of these

11 interpreters. They are here in the paper. Were they interpreters who

12 would tend to use - how shall I put it? - B/C/S or Serbian?

13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] May I intervene, Judge? I think it

14 is important.

15 I quoted the following terms or, rather, from the internal

16 memorandum, it says the 10th of December, 2003. It should say the 10th of

17 December, 2003, rather than Prosinac. It is sent by Gary Saxton and

18 Dolijan Barag [phoen] and it says: Additions to the statement of

19 Goran Stoparic. And then there is sections 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, these are

20 paragraphs of his statement. Do you have that document? It is marked.

21 Now will I manage to read this: 03456748, 03456751. I just have that

22 designation. It's a total of six pages.

23 MS. DAHL: Your Honour, if I may. I have an internal memorandum

24 dated 10 December 2003 from Gary Saxton and Dolijan Barag. It is not a

25 statement signed by Mr. Stoparic but an internal memorandum recording an

Page 2628

1 interview and notes. I -- it's in e-court as 65 ter Exhibit number 7035

2 and can I give you the English version. I believe it was translated at

3 some point for disclosure purposes. It is not something that the witness

4 reviewed and signed for correction of dialectal differences.

5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Indeed this internal memorandum

6 is not signed so the witness is not aware of it.

7 Mr. Seselj, if you refer to this internal memorandum, the witness

8 is not involved because this memorandum only deals with the OTP. That

9 records what the witness may have said, so I'm returning this document to

10 the Prosecution.

11 Yes, Mr. Seselj.

12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Judge, I am aware of the fact that

13 the witness did not directly participate in writing any one of these

14 statements that is being ascribed to him. You can see that from the

15 differences between his oral testimony and what is written in the

16 statements.

17 However, in these addenda the direct speech is used and the

18 witness allegedly says: I was not involved in politics before the war; I

19 was neither a Chetnik nor a communist. I don't know exactly when the

20 office was opened. In the beginning of the war there weren't any

21 Vojvodas, and so on and so forth.

22 So these are direct quotations of his words that cannot correspond

23 to the original. That is why I intervened. As for him not taking part in

24 any one of the statements, we've already seen that here in the courtroom.

25 MS. DAHL: I'm sorry, Your Honour, I think that Mr. Seselj is

Page 2629

1 labouring under a misunderstanding. The process that produces a

2 memorandum like this is a recollection of statements made by a witness

3 written by -- into English originally by the investigator who's

4 interviewed the witness to record the recollection of the interview. It

5 is then translated into a language the accused understands for disclosure

6 purposes. It does not purport to be a verbatim description in the

7 original language of the witness. The investigators, of course, endeavour

8 to capture as accurately as possible what the witness has said but the

9 reason that we go to the formality that we have, for instance, in the

10 statement signed and initialed on every page by the witness in 2006, is to

11 try to capture the original words and language used by the witness.

12 That's not what this document purports to be.

13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Ms. Dahl.

14 Yes, Mr. Seselj, we want to avoid any misunderstanding for you or

15 all other people. In fact, there are two categories of documents. The

16 first category is his witness statement written in his language,

17 translated into English and he signed each and every page of it. In other

18 words, in theory, his written statement has been read again by him before

19 he signed it and he read it again in his language so that the contents of

20 it is supposed to be known to him, which would mean that if, in this

21 written statement translated into his language, there are words that are

22 more B/C/S than Serb words, that can come from the translation and the

23 witness may not have noticed it. That's the first category of documents.

24 The second one is the document mentioned just now by Ms. Dahl

25 following the interview with the OTP. There was a internal memorandum

Page 2630

1 drafted in English, then translated into B/C/S and disclosed to the

2 Defence. So I think that's how things are to be understood.

3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Judge, by your leave, may I say that

4 the witness told you a few moments ago that these interviews were so

5 exhausting that at the end he could hardly wait to sign all of that, so

6 that it would be all over and done with. That is the essence of my

7 intervention, that the witness actually was not even interested in

8 checking whether everything in the statement corresponded to the essence

9 of his words.

10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] This will be my last question

11 and then we will end this hearing.

12 Witness, you heard everything that was said. When you signed this

13 written statement in your own language, did you take the time to read the

14 entire document or did you just sign because you were told, Sign here and

15 it's accurate?

16 Could you tell us exactly how it happened, how you signed the

17 document written in your own language?

18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, either somebody would

19 read it out to me or I would read it myself.

20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] But you don't remember? You

21 don't remember whether it was read out to you or whether you read it to

22 yourself? You cannot be accurate about this?

23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] When something is read out in the

24 English language, the interpreter would read it out. When it was in my

25 language, then I would read it.

Page 2631

1 MS. DAHL: Your Honour --

2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Judge, may I notice something. You

3 see that what happens is that the witness even signs statements in

4 English, that the interpreter interprets for him right there on the spot,

5 and the witness does not have any proof of the text being exactly what the

6 interpreter is telling him by way of an interpretation.

7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Ms. Dahl.

8 MS. DAHL: I was wondering whether the presiding Judge's question

9 related to the 2006 statement or some particular statement because

10 Mr. Stoparic is now --

11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] 2006.

12 Very well, it is five after 7.00. The interpreters are going to

13 be upset if we continue, so we will resume tomorrow at 2.15.

14 See you tomorrow at 2.15 and we will continue this

15 cross-examination. Thank you.

16 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 7.05 p.m.,

17 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 23rd day of

18 January, 2008, at 2.15 p.m.