1 Wednesday, 26 March 2008
2 [Open session]
3 [The witness entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 8.30 a.m.
5 [The accused entered court]
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Registrar, could you please
7 call the case.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours, good morning to
9 everyone in the courtroom. This is case number IT-03-67-T, the
10 Prosecutor versus Vojislav Seselj.
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Registrar. This is
12 Wednesday, and I welcome representatives from the Prosecution, our
13 witness, Mr. Seselj, as well as everyone helping us.
14 The cross-examination is going to continue and I will thus give
15 the floor to Mr. Seselj.
16 WITNESS: WITNESS VS-1013 [Resumed]
17 [Witness answered through interpreter]
18 Cross-examination by Mr. Seselj: [Continued]
19 Q. Mr. VS-1013, at the beginning of the examination-in-chief, you
20 talked about the good pre-war relationships between the Serbs and Muslims
21 in the Zvornik area and then you stated that the upset in the interethnic
22 relations came about because of the Serbian Academy of Arts and Sciences
23 and their big plan; is that what you said?
24 A. That's what I said. That's my assumption.
25 Q. What big plan is this of the Serbian Academy of Arts and
2 A. Well, I can give you my opinion. Now whether it is correct or
3 not, those are my conclusions nonetheless.
4 Q. Well, give me your conclusions then.
5 A. Well, if you put all the pieces of the puzzle together which I
6 tried to do, and giving thought to how the situation came about in the
7 first place, everything happened with the arrival of Dobrica Cosic,
8 Vuk Draskovic, your own Bore Djordjevic and I'd link this up to the death
9 of Branko Copic, his suicide. I was at school then but I think that this
10 was on the news at the time that he convened a conference, a press
11 conference at which he stated that a plan was being prepared for all
12 non-Serbs to be killed after which he was proclaimed mad and he committed
13 suicide. I think he jumped off a bridge, not into the water but on to
14 the ground beside the water.
15 Q. And what year was this that Branko Copic committed suicide?
16 A. I think it was 1985 or '86. 1986, I think, somewhere around
17 there. I'm not quite sure so I couldn't give you those facts precisely.
18 Q. Several years before. But what press conference was it that he
19 held with this plan, putting forward the plan that all non-Serbs be
21 A. Well, I remember that a professor of Serbo Croatian at the time,
22 my teacher, I had a lesson with him and I didn't know about politics at
23 the time but I knew that he talked about us with that, that it was very
24 sorry to see such a major writer go wrong and I remember him saying that.
25 And I remembered his words several years later and I tried to link all
1 this up.
2 Q. Well, I can tell you with every certainty that Branko Copic never
3 convened any press conference before his suicide. He was persecuted
4 under the Communist regime and suffered from paranoia. And when he had
5 this depression, he jumped off Branko Radicevic Bridge, that was the name
6 of the bridge. There was no conference so neither you nor the
7 Prosecution can bring in a scrap of evidence to proof that Branko Copic
8 held any press conference whatever, that's why I'm surprised by that
9 statement of yours.
10 A. I said I was not certain, but, Mr. Seselj, what you are doing for
11 24 -- round the clock, you're dealing with things like this whereas I am
12 not somebody who deals with the kind of work you deal with. I'm not a
13 politician. I'm not an investigator; fourth, I'm not an attorney. I'm
14 quite simply a man doing an ordinary job in order to survive, to have a
15 livelihood and to take care of how I'm going to make ends meet to the end
16 of the month and be able to look out for my family and feed it as best I
17 can. So I don't think I have any leftover time for things like that but
18 I just said that these were some of my thoughts.
19 So I can't tell you about the facts. That is the way in which I
20 put the puzzle together.
21 Q. Mr. VS-1013, I have every sympathy with the problems you face in
22 life and a lot of people live that way in the Balkans, most of them in
23 fact so not only in your region, but everybody must be responsible for
24 the words they utter so you must bear that in mind. So tell me now,
25 please, where was it that Dobrica Cosic, Vuk Draskovic, Bore Djordjevic
1 and I were taken into the Serbian academy? Is that where you mean when
2 we were admitted?
3 A. Mr. Seselj, I don't know the dates when you became a member or
4 not a member of the SANU, the Serbian Academy of Arts and Sciences. And
5 as far as the academy goes, I said that I thought that's where it all
6 began. So I didn't say that it did actually begin there, I said that I
7 thought it began there and that according to my knowledge and information
8 and what I had heard, read and seen, that's how things evolved, roughly
10 Q. Well, I have to tell you and tell me your views, that neither
11 Vuk Draskovic nor Bore Djordjevic, nor I myself never became members of
12 the Serbian Academy of Arts and Sciences, not because we didn't wish to.
13 Everybody wants to, every prominent intellectual in Serbia would like to
14 become a member of the academy but there is such stringent criteria that
15 we just didn't meet those criteria. So do you maintain that we actually
16 became members of the Serbian academy, that we were admitted?
17 A. Mr. Seselj, I never said that. I said I think.
18 Q. You said you think we became members.
19 Now, do you know that I was born in Bosnia too? Are you aware of
20 that? I was born in Sarajevo, in actual fact.
21 A. I heard that you were born in Bosnia but not where, actually.
22 Q. And do you know that we Bosnians, Serbs, Croats and Muslims,
23 have -- I like to say that to think is one thing but to know is another.
24 They are two quite different things; isn't that right?
25 A. Yes, I do know that.
1 Q. So you've heard about that proverb. I don't want to finish the
2 proverb off. It's a national proverb but the second part isn't
3 commensurate to things that we should say in court. So you agree?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Now, have you ever heard about the Islamic declaration of
6 Alija Izetbegovic?
7 A. Yes, I have heard about it. I have not read it ever.
8 Q. But do you recall that the press wrote about it? That the press
9 wrote about certain excerpts from that declaration among others, his
10 position and view that life together between Muslims and non-Muslims in a
11 single state was impossible.
12 A. Well, I have to repeat. I have never read the declaration
13 myself. First, because before, writers wrote books. Today, everybody
14 can write a book. So although this was written in our times, I haven't
15 actually read it so I can't say what it says there. If that's what he
16 wrote, then that's quite ludicrous because Muslims, Serbs and Croats for
17 decades, for centuries lived together in Bosnia-Herzegovina without any
18 major problems.
19 Q. Well, it wasn't without any greater problems through history,
20 there were a lot of problems throughout history, let me remind you,
21 Mr. VS-1013. Not everything was rosy because sometimes during the
22 Turkish times, the Muslims were the privileged class and the Serbs and
23 Croats were the underdogs, isn't that right? Do you agree with that?
24 A. Well, I couldn't really say. I didn't live during those times.
25 I wasn't alive then so I don't know.
1 Q. But you were taught history, you learned history at school, did
2 you not?
3 A. Yes, I did learn history.
4 Q. What education do you have? Secondary school education or what?
5 A. Secondary school.
6 Q. So in primary school, elementary school, secondary school, you
7 were taught history and you knew about the events that happened in the
8 area. But yes, for several decades, there was a peaceful way of life, I
9 agree with that.
10 Now, do you know that in 1986, the authorities in Belgrade banned
11 my book "The Witch-hunt for Heretics" by the court in Belgrade?
12 A. No.
13 Q. And do you know that in the 1980s, I spoke about pan-Islamic
14 tendencies and their appearance and emergence in Bosnia-Herzegovina?
15 A. No.
16 Q. Do you know that I was tried in Sarajevo and given an eight-year
17 prison sentence for hostile propaganda, or rather anti-Communist
18 propaganda, Serb nationalism and other things which at that time under
19 the Communist regime were incriminated?
20 A. I think I read about that somewhere that you were in prison but
21 that you were put on trial and why, I don't really know.
22 Q. So you don't really know anything about me except that I -- you
23 say that I became a member of the Serbian Academy of Arts and Sciences.
24 All right, Mr. VS-1013, tell me whether you know that already in 1991,
25 under the auspices of the Party of Democratic Action, the so-called SDA,
1 that was a party that rallied the largest number of Muslims in
2 Bosnia-Herzegovina, that the so-called Patriotic League was formed?
3 A. No, I don't know.
4 Q. That means you've never heard of the Patriotic League, would that
5 be right?
6 A. Well, I have heard of it when the war broke out. That's when I
7 heard of it.
8 Q. And almost a year before the war, did you ever hear of a
9 paramilitary organisation of the Patriotic League that was formed under
10 the name of Green Berets?
11 A. As for the Green Berets, I have heard of them. I think it was on
12 television where they were shown. I don't know in all those pre-war
13 settlings of account between the various nationalist parties it was
14 mentioned a number of times. And on one occasion, I remember, I don't
15 know what meeting it was but I remember that a man came out and said that
16 these, I don't know, Green Berets existed and that he didn't know --
17 well, that they were rallying patriots because already at that time, if I
18 can put it that way, there were intonations of a conflict looming and
19 that they were ready to defend the country. Now, whether he said in the
20 year -- or rather 2000 --
21 Q. What 2000?
22 A. 2000 Green Berets.
23 Q. And what was the basis, the main cause of the Serbian Muslim
24 conflict at the end of the 1991 and the beginning of 1992? It was first
25 of all a conflict between politicians and then it expanded to involve the
1 general populous, the people?
2 A. Well, what the basis of the conflict is, the reason for the
3 conflict, well, I think that was an attempt to proclaim
4 Bosnia-Herzegovina an independent state because with the disintegration
5 of Yugoslavia quite simply all the republics or rather, Slovenia
6 proclaimed its independence first followed by Croatia, and then the
7 Bosnian and Herzegovinian politicians wanted to proclaim an independent
8 Bosnia-Herzegovina too, and the Serbian Democratic Party which was the
9 strongest party at the time was opposed to that and this led to heated
10 arguments and discussions. I know that some of the meetings that were
11 held went on until midnight and beyond and they were very heated
12 statements, for instance by Karadzic who threatened that there would be
13 no Muslims and Cengic who came out and made statements too. This was on
14 television. He said don't let there be no Serbs.
15 Anyway, the then politicians of Bosnia-Herzegovina behaved like
16 children in kindergarten.
17 Q. Let's summarise this now. The Muslim and Croatian politicians
18 wanted to see Bosnia-Herzegovina independent whereas the Serbian
19 politicians wanted Bosnia-Herzegovina to remain within the composition of
20 Yugoslavia; is that it? Would that be a summary of what you've just
22 A. I don't think it's a summary because as far as I remember, and
23 let me tell you quite frankly, I'm not an analyst of any kind, nor am I a
24 political or military expert, but viewing the situation and these three
25 parties, the SDA, the SDS and the HDZ, in a coalition form took over
1 power from the Communists just to get rid of the Communists, you must be
2 conscious of the fact that the Communists among their ranks had many
3 Serbs, Croats, and Muslims so none of the nationalist parties in my
4 opinion, I keep saying my opinion and as I see things because if I spoke
5 of in the name of the state or state organs, well, I'm not such an
6 important person and I don't have the education to do so and I don't
7 think I'm intelligent enough to do that.
8 Q. Mr. VS, I'm not underestimating you at all, Mr. VS-1013, not at
9 all. I'm not underestimating you regardless of the fact that you haven't
10 had any high education.
11 A. That's why I say that to a large extent, they had a lot of people
12 who came from all three ethnic groups.
13 Q. Let's now go back to the Zvornik area. Is it true and correct
14 that the first unrest and the first animosity that broke out between
15 Serbs and Muslims in the Zvornik area took place when the question of and
16 the dilemma came up of Bosnia's independence or should it remain within
17 Yugoslavia? Is that where the rift began on a nationalist level?
18 A. An ethnic rift broke out in large part because of what you've
19 said and also, little by little, there was a nationalist rift with the
20 war in Croatia where certain ethnic groups had different positions and
21 views vis-a-vis the war. Some of them said that the party that didn't
22 want to live -- for example, your wife, if she didn't want to live with
23 you, if she doesn't want to live with you and wants to divorce, you can't
24 force her to continue living with you so that's my position too. If
25 anybody doesn't wish to live with anybody else, you needn't do so.
1 Q. I'm not asking about your position but is it true that in 1991,
2 for instance, the JNA conducted mobilisation in Bosnia and Herzegovina of
3 the reserve force, the reservists?
4 A. I don't know whether they conducted mobilisation. I know that
5 certain people would be called up to report to the reserve formations and
6 units and that some people fled abroad because of that and others went
7 into hiding even. But that a general all-out mobilisation was conducted
8 in 1991, I really don't know. I can't say. I wasn't in a position for
9 me to be able to tell you that, whether it did or did not.
10 Q. And what about mobilisation? Did it start at the beginning of
11 1992, then? Was there mobilisation in 1992?
12 A. Well, mobilisation as such, I think that in the villages, for
13 example around Zvornik, that the JNA did start to call people up to the
14 reserve force or mobilise them, I don't know which term is best suited,
15 and it did issue military kits to people and certain Serbs would tell
16 their friends of many years standing that 15 to 20 days before the war
17 that they went to do a military exercise and then went to work after
19 Q. Is it true and correct that when these people were called up for
20 military training and partial mobilisation, because an all-out general
21 mobilisation was never actually proclaimed before the war, is it true and
22 correct that the Serbs almost regularly responded to the call-up whereas
23 the Muslims avoided doing so?
24 A. Well, I know that the Serbs were indeed mobilised. Now whether
25 the Muslims received call-ups for mobilisation, I'm not sure. I remember
1 a few young guys who did receive call-ups in 1991 to join the reserve
2 force and that they avoided doing so because they were afraid that they
3 would be sent somewhere to the battle front in Croatia or wherever and I
4 think this was in 1991. Now, whether in 1992 the Muslims received
5 call-up papers, I don't know. I personally didn't receive any so I can't
6 answer the question.
7 Q. Do you know about the village of Donja Kamenica in the
8 municipality of Zvornik?
9 A. Yes, I do know about that village.
10 Q. Do you know about Sahmani, a hamlet of that village? So, have
11 you heard about the hamlet of Sahmani in that village, part of that
13 A. I may have heard about it. Sahmani, I don't know.
14 Q. Have you heard that in mid-March, 1992, a group of five Serb
15 young men were arrested in this village and that this was the first major
16 incident in the Zvornik area?
17 A. No. I am not aware of that. As far as I know, to the best of my
18 knowledge, the first incident occurred in the area around Sapna, I don't
19 know where exactly, but I've not heard about this area of Sahmani,
21 Q. This incident in Sahmani occurred in March and the Muslim village
22 of Sapna in the Zvornik municipality, that's where the first murder
23 occurred in the Zemun municipality. Do you know who was killed?
24 A. No, I don't know.
25 Q. It was a non--commissioned officer of the JNA Nika Stanojevic, he
1 was a sergeant and several soldiers were wounded when their column came
2 up against a roadblock in that village and fire was opened on them
3 without any warning. And then when this sergeant or rather a warrant
4 officer was killed, the troops returned fire and the Muslim, I think, was
5 killed. I don't have his name. Have you heard about this incident, this
7 A. Yes, I did hear about this clash, but because I was not there and
8 neither were you, I could not really ascertain what really happened.
9 Q. But do you agree that the first victim fell on the Serb side?
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, the interpreters
11 are asking you to stop -- to turn off your mike once you have put your
12 question and to turn it back on when you're asking your question, please.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, that's what I do most of the
14 time, but sometimes I just forget.
15 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Did you hear my question? Is this the first victim in this clash
17 between Muslims and Serbs in the Zvornik area?
18 A. I know that there was shooting but as to who opened fire first,
19 well, one Muslim was killed and one Serb. I couldn't then tell you this
20 but I would say that these were the first two victims in this clash.
21 Q. Yes, well, on the same day, the first two victims of this
22 conflict but the JNA approached as the regular armed force of Yugoslavia,
23 and the local Muslims and their paramilitaries set up a roadblock and
24 they opened fire. These are the facts.
25 A. Well, I couldn't tell you how this occurred because I was not
1 there. But I do know that at that time, roadblocks were set up by all
2 and sundry, wherever they felt like and everybody would stop there, so I
3 couldn't tell you how this clash actually occurred. Fortunately, I
4 myself was never stopped at any roadblock because I am from Zvornik and I
5 just moved around Zvornik.
6 Q. Do you know who Sead Hadziavdic is, from Drinjaca?
7 A. Yes, I do.
8 Q. He owns the Royal Cafe, doesn't he?
9 A. Yes, I think the name of the cafe was Royal.
10 Q. Do you know that he was the first to start procuring weapons in
11 an organised manner for the illegal arming of the Muslims from his
12 village and the OTP is in possession of a report from the state security
13 service from Zvornik, from autumn 1991, where this is stated. Have you
14 heard anything about that?
15 A. Arming them? I heard that he was selling weapons, probably to
16 arm people.
17 Q. Well, selling weapons. So procuring weapons and selling them to
18 his fellow Muslims; is that right?
19 A. Yes, that's what I heard but I never saw that.
20 Q. Do you know who Saban Redzic from Kamenica is?
21 A. Yes, I do.
22 Q. Do you know who Sead Haskic from Kamenica is?
23 A. No, I don't.
24 Q. Do you know that Saban Redzic sold weapons to his compatriots in
1 A. No, I didn't hear that.
2 Q. And do you know who Captain Almir is?
3 A. Yes, I do.
4 Q. What is his real name?
5 A. I don't know.
6 Q. Would his real name be Samir Nistovic, could that be his real
8 A. No, I couldn't tell you that. I don't know.
9 Q. Was he the person who organised the Patriotic League and the
10 Green Berets as its armed wing?
11 A. Well, I couldn't tell you that. I know that when I fled to Kula,
12 that there was a man up there who was shouting at people, beating them up
13 and people were saying that this was Captain Almir but I didn't know him
14 and I didn't really pay much attention to what he was saying because he
15 was trying to organise some form of defence there. But now, as to
16 whether there was any organisation that he set up or not, it is my
17 opinion and that's the only thing that I can give you, he wouldn't be
18 running around in complete -- completely upset running around from people
19 telling them, Stop, stop, we have to defend this.
20 Q. But there is testimony that he was not a competent commander, but
21 this is not at issue here but you do not, you do not contest that he was
22 commanding the Muslim forces there?
23 A. No, I do not.
24 Q. Do you know that the Muslim leadership in the Zvornik
25 municipality raised the reserve force of the MUP, of the police, and
1 provided arms to them as early as in January of 1992?
2 A. Yes, I do know that the reserve force of the MUP was called up
3 but not the Muslim part. But if I may say so, that was the Serb-Muslim
4 force; there were reservists both of Serb and Muslim ethnic background.
5 And after the roadblock was set up, as far as I can recall, some other
6 people were admitted to this reserve force of the MUP after the Serb
7 policemen left the MUP.
8 Q. According to the reports, local hoodlums joined the MUP, the
9 reserve force. They bragged and walked around in their MUP uniforms and
10 they were instilling fear both in Serbs and in Muslims; isn't that right?
11 A. I wouldn't agree with you. First of all because those hoodlums
12 and thugs did join the force but that was only a day or two after the
13 shooting, after the roadblock was set up. And they were strutting
14 around, yes, that is true, and they were bragging, but as to whether they
15 were instilling fear in Zvornik, I wouldn't agree with that. They were
16 doing check-ups at the bridge leading in and out of Zvornik. They were
17 searching everybody but as far as I know, they did not use any corrosive
18 measures against anyone.
19 Q. Did you hear from Mithat Grahic?
20 A. No, I have never heard about Mithat Grahic.
21 Q. This is a local criminal from Zvornik who set up a unit called
22 Dzamijski Golubovi, the Mosque Pigeons, does that mean anything to you?
23 A. Well, during the war I heard about the existence of this unit but
24 I don't know this Mithat. I may know him by sight because Zvornik was
25 not a big town, but as for his name, I can't remember him.
1 Q. But do you know that those Mosque Pigeons, before the war, were
2 roaming around Zvornik?
3 A. No.
4 Q. And have you heard about a paramilitary organisation called
6 A. No.
7 Q. It was set up by Sulejman Trsic. Before the war, he taught in
8 the elementary school in Sapna.
9 A. No, I did not hear about that.
10 Q. Before the war, Sapna was part of the Zvornik municipality and
11 after the war, now, it is part of the federation.
12 A. Yes, that's what I heard.
13 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
14 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
15 Q. And do you know about a man by the name of Semsudin Muminovic,
16 nicknamed Cobra? He later went on to become the commander of the Zvornik
17 Brigade of the BH army, sometime late in 1992.
18 A. The name sounds familiar but I don't know this man and I have not
19 heard about it.
20 Q. And do you know that the president of the municipality, and the
21 SDA commissioner was Abdulah Pasic, a former dentist in Zvornik?
22 A. I would like to correct you. He was not a dentist, it was Asim.
23 He was the dentist. He was the president of the SDA.
24 Q. And who was the president of the municipality?
25 A. I think it was Pasic. I think he worked at the clinic.
1 Q. Okay. So now I have a little mistake here. Do you know who
2 Nedjo Cahic is?
3 A. I did hear his name mentioned. I think he was an active duty
4 serviceman. I knew his brother, I didn't know him.
5 Q. He was the commander of the municipal Territorial Defence staff
6 and they took over the weapons from the depot of the Milicija and the
7 Territorial Defence depots and they used those weapons to arm the Muslims
8 on the eve of the 8th of April, 1992; is that right?
9 A. Well, I wouldn't agree with you for one reason and that is the
10 fact that -- or rather, as far as I know, I think that he came not to
11 Zvornik but to Sapna or Tuzla but it was later and I don't recall him
12 being in Zvornik before the war. And as for whether the weapons were
13 taken out or not, I don't know that. The only thing I can say is that
14 the JNA forces took the military files from the military department and
15 also the weapons from the Territorial Defence depots.
16 As far as I know, again, I stress, as far as I know, the only
17 weapons that were at the disposal were those that were held by the
18 reserve force of the police. As far as I know, the JNA members took the
19 files and the weapons from the Territorial Defence with them.
20 Q. Do you know the HAP platoon?
21 A. Yes, I did hear about them.
22 Q. We who lived in Bosnia used the term Hapati, it's a slang term
23 for stealing. That would be the kind of street language.
24 A. Yes, that was the street language, the slang.
25 Q. And this HAP platoon was deployed to loot Serb villages,
1 apartments, houses and so on?
2 A. Well, I wouldn't agree with you. Well, what does it mean to
3 loot? I was not with them. But as far as I know, they were set up
4 according to the information that I have, they were set up only once the
5 lines were established so when some actions were carried out, they were
6 in the position to steal some private property from Serb homes. But to
7 say that they were roaming around Zvornik looting Serb property, you
8 couldn't say that.
9 Q. So to your knowledge, nobody looted Serb property in Zvornik
10 before the 8th of April?
11 A. No, they didn't.
12 Q. And the property of the Serbs who left their homes and apartments
13 and fled across the Drina?
14 A. To my knowledge, this did not happen. There may have been some
15 incidents, isolated incidents but I'm sure that there was no looting and
16 all-out stealing from departments.
17 Q. Do you know who Himzo Tulic is?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Himzo Tulic was a well-known architect before the war in Zvornik.
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. He designed several buildings in Zvornik, a cultural hall,
22 cultural centre, things like that?
23 A. He was a surveyor. I don't know what kind of jobs he did but he
24 had a master's degree in land survey.
25 Q. That was the public company in the municipality?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. And do you know that Himzo Tulic, once he left Zvornik, he went
3 Austria or Germany or wherever, wrote a book entitled "Zvornicka
4 Sirat-Cuprija." I have this book here with me.
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. So you do know about his book?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Have you read it?
9 A. No, I haven't.
10 Q. And do you know that in this book, he describes the killing of
11 Zvornik Muslims, prisoners, civilians, the suffering that those who fled
12 went through and things like that?
13 A. Yes, I have heard about that, but I, myself, don't like to
14 revisit those events and experiences.
15 Q. But, sir, VS-1013, you came here to evoke those memories of those
16 ugly events?
17 A. Yes, that's true, and -- but it's very difficult for me and I'm
18 trying to go back to my normal life.
19 Q. But you have to admit that I'm very fair towards you. I don't
20 want to reopen any of your wounds, to go beyond what is my objective
21 right in carrying out this cross-examination, for me to be able to
22 establish some truth in all of this, do you agree with me?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. This man, Himzo Tulic, at page 130 of his book mentions a certain
25 number of Muslim paramilitary formations: The Cobras, the Mosque
1 Pigeons, HAP platoon, the Drina Dragons, the Moce, and Mis from Goduce,
2 the battalion and the mortar detachment. When have you heard of all
3 those Muslim formations, have you heard about them?
4 A. Yes, I have heard about them.
5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I don't know where the problem is.
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Marcussen.
7 MR. MARCUSSEN: I know it's difficult to remember, I have the
8 same problem, but I would like to ask the accused to try to remember to
9 turn off the microphone after he has put his questions.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, I thought that the Prosecutor
11 had some vital objection.
12 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, let me take this
13 opportunity to say that you must pause between question and answer. You
14 have a fairly loud voice, as you know, and then I cannot hear the
15 translation into French. Thank you.
16 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
17 Q. Himzo Tulic says here that those units in June were linked up to
18 set up to 206th Zvornik Brigade which was envisaged as the core of the
19 future Drina Corps. Do you know that in June, this 206th Muslim Zvornik
20 Brigade was set up?
21 A. Well, Mr. Seselj, I don't know that because -- are you talking
22 about 1992?
23 Q. Yes. That's when you were in detention.
24 A. Yes, I was in detention then. Let me go back now. I heard about
25 the existence of those units and now as to how they were set up and who
1 was their commander in chief and so on, I don't know that because I was
2 simply not there.
3 I can tell you what I heard, rumours, what people were saying and
4 what I read in the press.
5 Q. Yes, very well, I understand you fully.
6 Now, let's look at this Sejtan legion and "Sejtan" means devil in
7 Arabic or Turkish; is that right?
8 A. Well, Sejtan, yes, that's right.
9 Q. So it's the Devil's Legion, right, translated into Serbian?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Very well. I just want us to clarify certain things. What is
12 completely understandable to you and me need not be clear to the judges,
13 so I'm trying to clarify things.
14 Now, Himzo Tulic in this book of his describes the events before
15 the war and the rift in the SDA party, that is the main Muslim party and
16 he was in the Muslim Bosniak organisation and as a critic from outside,
17 he spoke about this rift.
18 Now, do you know that in the SDA, there was indeed a rift before
19 the war broke out?
20 A. Mr. Seselj, I never delved in politics so there is always a power
21 struggle but if he writes about that since he dealt with matters of that
22 kind, then that must be correct.
23 Q. Well, he says on page 15 for instance, that the executive board
24 of the party became divided as he says into two almost equal factions,
25 one more liberal than the other, rallied around the president of the
1 municipality, Pasic, Jasim Hadzic and the other more conservative faction
2 rallied around the Juzbasic, and both of these sides or parties
3 considered themselves to be the legitimate representatives of the Muslim
4 people. And the main board of the SDA attempted on several occasions to
5 have them resolve their differences through an emissary but was
6 unsuccessful. And instead of them settling their differences, the
7 conflicts increased and assemblies were called to replace various people.
8 A. If he says so, then it must be correct, although I tell you that
9 I didn't know about things like that but since he was a politician and
10 dealt with politics then that must have been correct.
11 Q. Himzo Tulic is a highly respected man in Zvornik, he's a
12 prominent citizen and wouldn't take lightly to lying about things like
14 A. Well, I don't know, politics is a tricky business, Mr. Seselj.
15 Probably what he says is correct.
16 Q. He goes on to say that these conflicts engulfed the SDA
17 membership and then he explains the causes of the Muslim defeat with the
18 8th of April because he said that the president of the municipality and
19 the commander of the Territorial Defence fled from Zvornik and so on and
20 so forth, but we're not going to dwell on the details there now.
21 What I'm interested in this regard is this: And I can offer it
22 up for the overhead projector, perhaps. Can we place it on the ELMO?
23 When it comes to arming, just a paragraph, so that we can read it out to
24 bring things home. I'm not the only person who reads this book and I'm
25 quite sure that The Hague OTP has the book too. Let's just place that
1 paragraph on the overhead projector.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Marcussen.
3 MR. MARCUSSEN: I'm not going to object to the use of the book
4 the way it's being used now, but I would place on the record that we have
5 not been notified of the accused's intention to use any documents in
6 cross-examination of the witness.
7 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
8 Q. Do you want to read it out or shall I read the first marked
9 paragraph out? I'll read it out, if you find that more acceptable.
10 "Just prior to the war, at this first and last meeting of the Crisis
11 Staff" and it's the municipal Crisis Staff that he's talking about that
12 the SDA formed, "One side did its utmost to prove to the other that it
13 had armed its people."
14 So you have two sides amongst the Muslims themselves and they are
15 entering into a race and say how they armed their own people. And the
16 SDS, if it begins this war, will have no chance at all, even if the JNA
17 joins them. The lies were so convincing that most of the people believed
18 them, which was a catastrophe. The people should not have been lied to.
19 Instead of that, plans of evacuation for the population to leave town and
20 the settlement in the Drina valley should have been designed had that
21 been done, the overall balance of war crimes in our area would certainly
22 have been different.
23 Now, could you give the book back to me.
24 Now, from the Muslim aspect, Himzo Tulic is explaining the
25 situation from the Muslim aspect and says that among this Muslim
1 leadership where there was a rift, each side boasted who had managed to
2 supply more weapons and be better organised; however, when armed conflict
3 and armed settling of accounts took place, a defeat ensued, almost in a
4 single day.
5 Have I interpreted this properly, in your opinion?
6 A. That's what it says so, yes, you've interpreted it correctly, I
7 would say.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, we have listened
9 carefully to this excerpt being read out. This was authored by a
10 prominent figure in Zvornik, a Muslim person. The author of this book
11 says that there was a rift within the SDA but the author also says that
12 there was arming on the part of the Muslims. And I connect this sentence
13 with what you told us yesterday.
14 Yesterday, you told us, "I bought a Kalashnikov," so I would like
15 to spell this out and I want this to be cleared up. You bought it as
16 part of the arming of the Muslim population, as is recounted by the
17 author of this book or you bought this weapon personally?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I bought it, actually, on my
19 neighbour's advice, and I didn't purchase it through these parties, but
20 the man took me to see another man. He sold these on the black market.
21 He was a black marketeer in a village. I don't remember the village's
22 name. Just let me take a moment to try to remember what it was called.
23 I think the name of the village was Sopotnik. And I think that the man
24 had nothing to do with the parties. I think quite simply -- well, I
25 didn't actually know him. I stayed in the car, in my neighbour's car
1 until he settled the deal.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You are telling us the truth
3 when you say it's not you.
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
5 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
6 Q. About a week prior to the beginning of the conflict which was on
7 the 8th of April, it appeared as if the SDA leadership had settled its
8 differences. Do you know about that?
9 A. If that's what it says in the book, then probably that's what it
11 Q. Now, do you know that on the 7th of April, the day before the
12 conflict, there were negotiations between the Serbs and Muslims attended
13 by municipal representatives of the SDA and SDS parties. The Muslims
14 were represented by Pasic and Pezerovic and the Serbs were represented as
15 it says here in Tulic's book by Grujic and Ivanovic. Now the JNA was
16 represented by a colonel of the tank unit by the name of Tadic. Have you
17 ever heard of these negotiations on the 7th of April between the Serbs
18 and the Muslims which were attended by JNA officers?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And do you know that at the time the representatives of the
21 Serbian and Muslim Crisis Staffs achieved some sort of agreement,
22 three-point agreement?
23 A. Well, that news was broadcast that some agreement had been
24 reached but what it was about, I really don't know.
25 Q. All right. If you don't know the contents of the agreement, we
1 won't go into that. But anyway, the essence of the matter was that the
2 authorisations in Zvornik municipality be divided up, that police control
3 be divided up, according to settlements where the Serbs were in the
4 majority or where the Muslims were the majority population, that was the
5 essence of the agreement?
6 A. Well, I heard that there was some agreement but what they agreed
7 upon, I don't know.
8 Q. Now, let's see what the problem was there. After this agreement
9 had been reached, Himzo Tulic on page 20 states the following. Do you
10 want me to place that on the overhead projector, if the Trial Chamber
11 would like to see it on the ELMO; if not, I'll just read it out, read the
12 excerpt out. It's to be found on page 20, paragraph 3 and it says, "That
13 same night, there was a putsch in the SDA Crisis Staff, that is to say in
14 the Muslim party, and a conciliation of the two conflicting parties did
15 not last a week. And a Turkish word "hefta" is used, it's a Turkish
16 word. Those of us who lived there know that it means "week." And
17 Dedic Nezir, a reserve major, is placed to head the staff and after
18 taking stock of the military situation, the new commander proposes an
19 agreement. After this, the Crisis Staff disintegrated, some of the
20 members of the staff left the town and fled and some of them joined the
21 Crisis Staff at Kula Grad.
22 So that was the night before the conflict.
23 A. Whether that was so, I'm not sure, Mr. Seselj. I don't know.
24 The man who wrote that, I know him and I have a high opinion of him. Now
25 whether that was as he describes it, well, it's his own opinion. We
1 would have to hear the other side for me to be able to see that that was
2 it, 100 per cent. We can only go by what he wrote. I have a high regard
3 for him but I would prefer hearing two or three opinions. I don't doubt
4 his writings but I can't say that that's actually how it was because I
5 wasn't there. I wasn't a political representative of the SDA or anybody
7 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
8 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
9 Q. All right. I won't trouble you with Himzo Tulic's book anymore.
10 It was important for me for us to review the situation in Zvornik prior
11 to the outbreak of the conflict of the 8th of April. We have seen how
12 Tulic describes it and he says that there was disorganisation amongst the
13 Muslims, mutual conflicts, and that because of that, they were defeated
14 on the 8th of April, the day after they violated the agreement with the
15 Serb representatives in the JNA.
16 Now, the fight for Zvornik did not last long, for the town
17 itself, did it?
18 A. Well, I don't know what was agreed and secondly, I don't know who
19 violated the agreement. But the battles for the town did not last long.
20 I think that already by nightfall, the Serbs had control of Zvornik.
21 Q. However, the fighting for Kula Grad went on longer and Kula Grad
22 is a fortress, a large fortress above Zvornik, and then there is a Muslim
23 village that follows on from the fortress also called Kula Grad?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. And the fortress is in a good strategic position and during
1 Turkish times it was considered to be invincible; right?
2 A. Well, it has got a good strategic position, whether it was
3 considered invincible, I don't know, I haven't heard about that.
4 Q. The firing from the tanks could do nothing to it?
5 A. Probably.
6 Q. So it was only infantry fighting that could take place to take
7 control of Kula Grad and the fighting went on for days, that is to say,
8 from the 8th of April, as the day of the conflict in Zvornik, right up
9 until the 26th of April.
10 Now, the 26th of April, which was the Orthodox religious holiday
11 when Kula Grad fell?
12 A. Yes, it did fall. There was shooting from the direction of
13 Kula Grad. Now, what the fighting was and what happened, how it was
14 conducted, I can't say, but it is true that it was on Easter day that
15 Kula fell.
16 Q. But you happened to be there somewhere at Kula Grad; is that
18 A. Yes, I was there the day before it fell, that's right.
19 Q. And you were there stand guard at some post, I can see that from
20 your statement?
21 A. No, I was not engaged at all. I didn't have any weapons.
22 Q. Well, I'm not holding you for responsible for that. There was a
23 civil war. I'm not accusing anybody of bearing weapons. I'm just
24 accusing people who committed crimes. So you don't have to have this
25 defensive attitude.
1 Anyway, Mr. VS-1013, do you know which forces --
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, you were saying that
3 in Kula Grad while the fighting was going on, you had no weapon. Where
4 was the weapon you'd bought? You buy a weapon which you don't use?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. The first day I had the
6 weapon with me. The next morning when I woke up, my father told me that
7 we had to go in the direction of Tuzla and I still had it with me. I got
8 in the car with it but he said, "Get out of the car." He seized it from
10 People were passing by, and he gave it to someone passing by.
11 And I said, "Wait a minute. Let me give it to someone I know at least."
12 And a young guy came by whom I knew from the cafe and so I gave the
13 weapon to him. And then he took him with me, we moved off in the
14 direction of Tuzla, we took a turn, and went to a village which wasn't
15 far from Kula.
16 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
17 Q. There's another book here that I'd like to mention. I haven't
18 got it in front of me but I have a quotation from the book. Have you
19 ever heard of Besim Ibisevic who was the president of the municipality of
20 Srebrenica in February 1991 and April of 1992?
21 A. No, I haven't heard of him.
22 Q. He is a historian by profession and he published a book called
23 "Srebrenica from 1987 to 1992" in Amsterdam. It was printed in 1999.
24 I'm sure the OTP has the book. I haven't managed to get a copy of the
25 original but the OTP can, but there is a very characteristic quotation
1 from the book and it to be found on pages 64 and 65 where he says the
2 following: "In the second half of 1990, in Nova Kasaba, a cafe called
3 Jugum [phoen] a meeting was held of the representatives of the SDA of
4 Zvornik, Bratunac, Srebrenica, Vlasenica, Visegrad, Kalesija, and
5 Rogatica. Presiding over the meeting was Mehmed Kavazbasic from
6 Vlasenica, and on behalf of the SDA's central office, Izmet Kasumovic was
7 present. It was agreed that weapons should be supplied for the Muslims
8 and setting up guards as well and look into the possibility of toppling
9 the bridge over the Drina and cutting off the roads and communication
10 lines towards Serbia."
11 Have you heard anything about that ever?
12 A. No.
13 Q. This same author, Besim Ibisevic, on page 159 writes as follows,
14 he says: "At the beginning of February 1992, a meeting was held of the
15 representatives of the SDA of Srebrenica, Bratunac, Zvornik, and
16 Vlasenica. The meeting was held at Mount Susica in a hunting hut there,
17 that's Srebrenica municipality. The topic of the meeting was
18 preparations for the war."
19 That is to be found on page 159, have you heard of that meeting
20 in February 1992?
21 A. No.
22 Q. Do you know, since you were at Kula Grad at the time when it
23 fell, what units from the Serb side participated in the attack at
24 Kula Grad?
25 A. I wouldn't say that because I was just running away
2 Q. So I will tell you, according to my knowledge what units
3 participated in this attack and then you can confirm whether you know
4 about it or not. Do you agree with that approach?
5 A. Yes, I do.
6 Q. On the Serb side, it was the special unit of the JNA from
7 Pancevo. About 100 volunteers of the Serbian Radical Party. One of
8 Arkan's units participated, I don't know their strength, and a group of
9 the reserve or the wartime force of the police from Zvornik also
10 participated and it was joined by a group of volunteers of the Serbian
11 Radical Party from Loznica and this whole unit was under the command of
12 an active-duty police officer, Mr. Jekic, Vojislav Jekic. Have you ever
13 heard of Vojislav Jekic?
14 A. Unfortunately not.
15 Q. Fine. So when I tell you now who participated in the attack on
16 Kula Grad to my knowledge, do you have any objections and remarks, do you
17 have anything to deny or to confirm?
18 A. Well, I did not hear who participated in the attack. I do know
19 that on one occasion, when we were being guarded at Ciglana that one of
20 the guards said to another, he was wearing the military police uniform,
21 he said that he had participated in the attack on Kula Grad and that his
22 weapon had jammed and that he had been really scared. He hadn't known
23 what to do. A military police officer said that so this is the only
24 thing that I can tell you about the units that had participated in this
25 attack and about this man who led them.
1 Q. Let's just understand one thing. You're talking about the
2 military policemen. On the 26th of April, the military police did not
3 participate in the attack but there are previous attacks on Kula Grad?
4 A. Yes, I suppose so. You could hear shots from that direction
5 every day, not very intense but sometimes it was sporadic but we could
6 hear that.
7 Q. But there was some failed attacks on Kula Grad; isn't that
9 A. I suppose so. At least that's what the story is heard.
10 Q. Did you hear about Arkan's attempts to take Kula Grad and some of
11 his best fighters got killed there?
12 A. I heard that his brother-in-law got killed or maybe his best
13 fighter, I don't know. As far as I heard from the stories, they tried to
14 infiltrate the town, and they started a conflict there.
15 Q. This person was Rambo, the guy who got killed as his best
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And that was a few days before the final attack on Kula Grad that
19 I'm talking about?
20 A. Yes, that's what I heard.
21 Q. Do you know that Kalesija which is the neighbouring municipality
22 in the direction of Tuzla fell before Kula Grad actually?
23 A. I wouldn't know.
24 Q. Do you know that Kalesija is the municipality neighbouring
1 A. Yes, I'm aware of that.
2 Q. Muslims and Serbs live in Kalesija but the majority of them are
3 Muslims; is that correct?
4 A. Yes, I suppose so.
5 Q. Do you know that Kalesija, for a month, was under the Serb
6 control which was in April up to the 11th of May or thereabouts?
7 A. Yes, I heard that. I was not aware of the exact dates, but I
8 know that one time while we were still in Ciglana, people came from the
9 direction of Kalesija because I suppose that the Patriotic League Force,
10 as they were known at the time, had taken Kalesija again and the guards
11 told us, "We will come back from Kalesija."
12 Q. But you didn't know who participated in the attack on Kula Grad
13 but if I tell you that a special unit of the JNA from Pancevo and the
14 volunteers of the Serbian Radical Party returned immediately to Serbia as
15 soon as Kula Grad fell, what would you say about that? Am I telling the
16 truth or not?
17 A. I wouldn't be able to tell you. I wasn't there. How many
18 members of the Serbian Radical Party were there and from which
19 municipalities, I wouldn't be able to tell you either. I only know that
20 people from Kraljevo that guarded us later on were there. Whether they
21 participated in the attack on Kula Grad or not, I wouldn't know.
22 Q. I can only tell you that people from Kraljevo did not participate
23 in Kula Grad but we will discuss that a bit later. Now we will come to
24 your statement that you provided in Vienna in 1993 to the representatives
25 of the Muslim authorities. Do you remember that statement?
1 A. Representatives of the Muslim authorities?
2 Q. Yes.
3 A. What year was that?
4 Q. It was in 1993.
5 A. 1993? No, I provided a statement in 1996 to the Hague Tribunal.
6 Some people came, some people wrote statements and asked for my
7 statement, but the only official statement that I have provided was in
8 1996 to The Hague Tribunal.
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can this statement please be
10 displayed on the ELMO, but in private so that the identity of this
11 witness will not be revealed.
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] [Previous translation
13 continues] ... going to decide among ourselves whether we are going to
14 move into private session for this part.
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Please, I insist that this should
16 not be in closed session. I'm not going to do anything that might reveal
17 this witness's identity.
18 [Trial Chamber confers]
19 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] One moment. We're going to
20 have a look at the document. Could you give us the document first so
21 that we see it?
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] This is number 00301430 that I was
23 given by the Prosecutor. I can provide it to you but I think it would be
24 in order for the Prosecutor to provide you with the document. I received
25 it last week from the Prosecutor.
1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The Prosecutor gave you the
2 document but I don't have it. Yes, Mr. Prosecutor, are you aware of this
3 document? Do you know it?
4 MR. MARCUSSEN: Yes, we have disclosed this document to the
5 accused. It is for the accused to prepare his cross-examination and come
6 with the copies and the documents he needs to use. It's not for the
7 Prosecution to be his case manager. I don't know if we have a spare copy
8 that we can bring. I'm sure that we can look into that now.
9 It is my understanding that it is technically possible to show
10 the document just in the courtroom. So as long as the accused's
11 questions do not reveal the identity of the witness, we probably don't
12 need to go into private session if the accused prefers to be in open
13 session. But of course he has to put questions which don't reveal the
14 identity of the witness but that's a general rule that doesn't only apply
15 to this particular document.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So we can put the document on
17 the ELMO as long as this is not shown outside this courtroom.
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Your Honours, last year, I was
19 informed through the e-court that I am supposed to give only the ERN
20 number and that the registry is able to display the document on the
21 screen, so I have adapted to the system.
22 Could you please put this on the ELMO without the general public
23 being able to see. You're just going to show -- we are going to show the
24 whole page, all three of them. We will go through the entire document.
25 We will display all the three pages of this document.
1 Now, what channel will this be displayed on for me? Very well.
2 Thank you.
3 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
4 Q. Mr. VS-1013, can you see your name here, the date of birth, the
5 address, the occupation and the passport number?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Can you please go to page 3 for the gentleman to see his
8 signature and to confirm whether this is his authentic signature or not.
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Is this your signature?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Do you see the date when you provided this statement in Vienna?
13 A. Yes, I do.
14 Q. Do you see the name of the person who took the statement?
15 A. Yes, I do.
16 Q. This person took the statement on behalf of the Muslim
17 authorities in Sarajevo; is that correct?
18 A. I suppose so. I must tell you something. I've been providing
19 all sorts of statements. I was not looking at the date, but I suppose
20 that is that. I know that my first official statement was taken in 1996
21 for The Hague Tribunal and on behalf of The Hague Tribunal, but I --
22 Q. I am glad that you recognised the signature.
23 A. Yes, I did.
24 Q. So you are not contesting that this is your statement?
25 A. No.
1 Q. Please, can we slowly go across the first, second and third
2 pages. I would like to show you that nowhere in this statement did you
3 mention members of the Seselj group, you don't mention my name or the
4 Serb Radical Party.
5 Let's start looking at the text. Could you please start moving
6 the text, madam, towards the top and let's see if Seselj's men are
7 mentioned anywhere. Let's move on. Go to the next page please. Start
8 at the top, please. Scroll towards the bottom. Go on. Go on.
9 Are you able to follow or is this too fast?
10 A. Yes, I'm following.
11 Q. Let's go to page 3 now. Start from the top and move towards the
12 bottom of the page.
13 Have you managed to have a good look? Is it correct that you
14 don't mention Seselj's men, that you don't mention my name or the
15 Serb Radical Party?
16 A. As far as I can see, that's correct. But I did mention certain
17 members of your party, as far as I knew.
18 Q. We will look into that. We will see whether they really belong
19 to the party or not. You mentioned people under their nicknames, this
20 concurs with your subsequent statements and these are people of whom you
21 said that they tortured detainees, both the members of the military and
22 civilians and I'm not contesting any of that.
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Marcussen.
24 MR. MARCUSSEN: I would ask that the witness be allowed to look
25 at the statement, because I think he's going too fast for him to look at.
1 It says on, I believe it's page 3 of the statement, and I'm reading from
2 the English translation that I have, for example, it says: "On one
3 occasion, a Djuk from Karlovac visited us, a general Chetnik," and so on
4 and so forth. And there's more references to Chetnik so I think the
5 witness should be allowed to look at the statement before the questions
6 are being put to him in this way and he's being asked to confirmed what
7 groups he has mentioned or not mentioned.
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I can wait for as long as it takes,
9 but please do not take this into account as the time for my
10 cross-examination. And I would like to draw attention to the fact that
11 Seselj's men are one thing and Chetniks are another thing. Croats and
12 Muslims refer to everybody as Chetniks even the JNA. I'm not contesting
13 the fact that he is mentioning Chetniks and Vojvoda from Karlovac, what
14 were the -- how should I know?
15 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Do you need more time to peruse the document, sir?
17 A. Yes. What Mr. Seselj asked me about the Serb Radical Party, it
18 is not mentioned here at all. What is being mentioned is Vojvoda from
19 Kraljevo, the true Chetnik with long hair and long beard. I am
20 mentioning names and nicknames but as for what Mr. Seselj asked me about
21 the Serb Radical Party, this is not mentioned here. Chetniks are
22 mentioned on several occasions and in several paragraphs, but I have not
23 mentioned the SRS here or at least the lady who took a note of my
24 statement did not take it down.
25 Q. But you are not mentioning Seselj's name, there is no my name,
1 there is no reference to any of those here; is that correct?
2 A. As far as I can see, no reference of that is made here.
3 Q. Mr. VS-1013 --
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] One moment, please. Can we
5 have the document again. I would like to see the date of the document on
6 the last page, please.
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] On the last page, page 3.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. I have questions,
9 but I shall first give the floor to Mr. Seselj.
10 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
11 Q. This is your most recent statement after all that you went
12 through and the sufferings that you experienced?
13 A. You mean this one today?
14 Q. No, the one that you are looking at now. Could you please bring
15 that paper over to me? This was provided only a year after you suffered
16 through the detention?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Then your memory was the freshest, isn't that correct?
19 A. Yes, it was much fresher than it is today.
20 Q. And in 1996, when you provided your statement to the OTP of
21 The Hague Tribunal, you mentioned Seselj's men on several occasions. Who
22 talked to you in Sarajevo before you met with the investigators of
23 The Hague Tribunal?
24 A. Nobody.
25 Q. Who contacted you from the AID?
1 A. I beg your pardon.
2 Q. Do you know what AID, the Muslim secret service?
3 A. No, I wouldn't know.
4 Q. You don't know what AID is?
5 A. No.
6 Q. In that case, I won't ask you anything. I am astonished that you
7 don't know who AID is or what the organisation is, but it was suggested
8 to you to mention Seselj in 1996. I've tried to locate this
9 Vojvoda Celo, this is the person you mentioned in your first question?
10 A. Cele.
11 Q. In the first statement you said Celo, the statement Vienna. I
12 tried to find a photo, I managed it in Himzo Tulic's book, I found a
13 photo of a person with long hair who tortures a Muslim prisoner; one of
14 them is covered in blood. I'm going to show you the photo. It depicts a
15 person from the back. I would like to know and hear from you when you
16 look at the hair and the height and the picture of the person, would you
17 be able to recognise this person this Vojvoda Cele that you spoke about?
18 Could you please put this photo on the ELMO. Thank you?
19 MR. MARCUSSEN: Your Honours, we have not been given a copy of
20 this or notified that the accused was going to use this. Your Honours
21 have ordered that the accused provide us with a notification of a --
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Lower this down, please.
23 MR. MARCUSSEN: -- he hasn't done that. I object to this line of
24 cross-examination. I could have pulled in random photographs and used
25 that and I refrained from doing that. I am opposed to the use of this
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, there are rules
3 that have been set out by way of a decision issued by the Trial Chamber.
4 When, for the sake of the cross-examination, the accused produces
5 documents, he has to disclose the documents prior to the beginning of the
6 cross-examination. The documents have to be disclosed to the Prosecution
7 and to the Trial Chamber. I can very well understand that you are
8 physically in a difficult situation, you are alone and you have to manage
9 a whole host of events. Therefore, this objection is sustainable but one
10 has to factor in as well certain specific circumstances.
11 This objection pertains to the photograph that is to be found in
12 this book. This is a book that exists, it was not invented for this
13 purpose here. It has some relevance, that's the least we can say. Now,
14 as to the probative value, we'll see later. There is a photograph, I can
15 see some individuals in it. Obviously one of them has been hit if not
16 tortured and there is an individual who is looking at them. And it seems
17 that the question the accused wants to put to you is whether this
18 individual whom we can see, we can see his hair and his stature, and he
19 wants to know whether this is the famous Vojvoda Cele.
20 I'm going to ask my colleagues what they think of this.
21 [Trial Chamber confers]
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] In the interest of justice, the
23 Trial Chamber is going to allow the accused to show this photograph and
24 to put a question about what we can see in this photograph.
25 Put your question, Mr. Seselj.
1 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
2 Q. I know that it is difficult to identify somebody from the back,
3 but on the basis of this long hair, the typical hat that you can see on
4 this person's head, you can see the knife at this person's belt at the
5 left-hand side. I don't know what else could be characteristic, but
6 could this be the person that you identified as Vojvoda Celo from
8 A. I don't think so.
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Fair enough. Could you please hand
10 me the book.
11 Q. This morning, I gave 7 pages of documents to be photocopied for
12 the Trial Chamber and the Prosecution. I would like to use those
13 documents after the break. I assume that there will be a break in five
14 or six minutes. Please give this back to me. I hope that the
15 Prosecution will have enough time to study those documents. I obtained
16 those documents yesterday and I was not in a position to hand them over
17 sooner and I will be using them in the cross-examination of this witness.
18 I would like to make a remark regarding what I said yesterday. I
19 was able to learn that the questioning of Miroslav Vukovic, Cele, as a
20 suspect, was done by Mr. Mussemeyer, who appeared in this courtroom on
21 several occasions. It is -- this statement is very important for me in
22 this cross-examination. I learned some facts that I had not known
23 before, that at the time, Miroslav Vukovic, Cele, was in contact with
24 Ljubisa Petkovic, that he went to Zvornik from Banja Junakovic where he
25 had been undergoing treatment, and that he was there to guard and secure
1 the Glinica Factory. This statement is valuable to me and I'm not in a
2 position in use it now because the Prosecution did not hand it over, did
3 not disclose it because they are trying to cover everything up.
4 If Mr. Mussemeyer was here, he would be able to give us some
5 details. I'm not in a position to know everything, to know all the
6 details that occurred during the war but this is why there is this
7 voluminous documentation and I'm trying to use it. In this statement,
8 there are some very important details and since we will be unable to use
9 it with this witness, it would be essential for us to use it in the
10 examination of future witnesses, but to do so, we will have to get an
11 official translation.
12 I hope that I will get a statement from Miroslav Vukovic, Cele,
13 himself. It will be a brief statement, just a summary, but he did
14 provide a long statement to the OTP several years ago.
15 So if you are in a position to order the OTP to obtain this
16 statement, I would be very grateful to you.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Mundis, I have listened to
18 the accused and it appears that Miroslav Vukovic, aka Cele, from what
19 Mr. Seselj has, in terms of information, but he has so much information
20 that sometimes we are astounded that he should be aware of so many
22 Well, this Miroslav Vukovic, apparently, was interviewed by your
23 own associate whom we had the pleasure of seeing here on several
24 occasions in this courtroom.
25 Yesterday, I was delving into your pre-trial brief which I still
1 have in front of me. Page 43, footnote 284, mention is made of this Cele
2 and still in the pre-trial brief, page 44, footnote 309, this Cele is
3 mentioned again. So how is it that an individual who is in support of
4 your case in your pre-trial brief has been heard by the OTP? How is it
5 that his statement was not disclosed to the accused?
6 I'm not challenging you, because you took up this case at the
7 last minute, but this is a real question. How is it that somebody who is
8 mentioned in a pre-trial brief in a footnote in support of the arguments
9 being tried in the indictment, who was heard by the OTP, how is it that
10 his statement was not disclosed to the accused?
11 MR. MUNDIS: Good morning, Your Honour. Thank you for the floor.
12 The interview of this individual was taped. My understanding is that
13 again, it's a situation where, as we attempted to disclose the recorded
14 interview, the accused refused to accept it. We do have English
15 transcripts. We are working on translating those transcripts into B/C/S
16 and they will be disclosed as soon as they are available. It's -- much
17 of this, Your Honour, comes down to the simple issue of resources and as
18 each -- with respect to each indication of something else becoming a top
19 priority, other things necessarily have to be reevaluated. There is a
20 huge back-log of material, transcripts, Rule 68 material, suspect
21 interviews, interviews mentioning the accused by name, all of this
22 material, pursuant to the Chamber's orders, must be translated into
23 Serbian and there is simply a huge backlog of material that needs to be
24 either transcribed or transcribed and translated into B/C/S. So the
25 bottom-line answer is we have an English transcript, we have tape
1 recordings of these interviews but neither of those are acceptable to the
2 accused and as a result he will get the material as soon as it's
4 At some point, Your Honours, we very well may face the crisis
5 situation where we simply will need to adjourn this hearing in order to
6 produce the material in the Serbian language for the accused. I don't
7 think we're at that point yet but I do and will continue to stress that
8 there are certain logistical and human resource limitations upon us and
9 we are providing this material as quickly as we possibly can.
10 I don't believe that this individual is listed on the
11 Prosecution's witness list, although I do acknowledge that there are
12 references to him in the Prosecution pre-trial brief. But again, it's a
13 question of simply having the resources to translate and transcribe all
14 of this material into the Serbian language in light of the accused's
15 refusal to accept transcripts in English or tape recordings which are in
16 both English and Serbian.
17 Obviously these interviews were conducted in both languages so
18 that the Serbian language is audible on the tapes, but we simply can't
19 transcribe and translate this material quickly enough in order to
20 forestall each and every possible scenario of which material Dr. Seselj
21 says he wants today versus something that can be provided next week.
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, the Prosecutor has
23 provided an answer and I have no comment on this. However, this Cele is
24 somebody who could be the link between you and the volunteers of the
25 Serbian Radical Party, therefore, this is an important issue. You were
1 aware of his existence, be it only because you read the pre-trial brief.
2 And here again, I'm not casting any reproach on you. I told you the same
3 yesterday and you replied that you were the only accused in this Tribunal
4 who drafted 381 applications or motions. I do take note of that. I'm
5 not criticising you there, either.
6 But with regard to the proceedings, I'm somewhat amazed that such
7 an important element as this that drew your attention as you just saw,
8 why did you wait to the very last minute to say, "I need in my language
9 and in hard copy the statement of this man Cele." Well, you could have
10 asked for it several months ago. All the more so, since this individual
11 is so important to you, you could have done that months ago and you apply
12 for this on the last day.
13 The Prosecutor has just explained to you that he's really doing
14 his level best. That there were many factors to take into account, for
15 instance, that initially, you refused to accept everything on DVDs, so
16 everything now has to be transcribed which takes time. We know that.
17 But regardless of that, this is important. It is important to know
18 whether Mr. Cele was under you or not. You say he didn't. And in
19 support of your case, it would be interesting to know whether, what his
20 position was and this position would be in the statement, but you raise
21 this issue at the very last minute, hence my surprise.
22 Please do understand that this is not a reproach on my part, but
23 I'm just astonished, just as I expressed astonishment in light of the
24 fact that the OTP should have been very aware of this CD and should have
25 checked that you had -- Cele and you should have made sure that you had a
1 statement in hard copy.
2 Yes, Mr. Seselj, and then we will have a break.
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. President, it is my unalienable
4 right to have all the documents submitted to me on paper and in the
5 Serbian language. If the Prosecution is unable to do so, then this means
6 that the international justice is impossible. It is my unalienable right
7 to defend myself; it is guaranteed by a number of international
8 conventions. The Prosecution has had five years at its disposal and they
9 must have known that I would need that at one point and I have to say
10 that I have been misled.
11 Up until a couple of days ago, I believed that Cele was among
12 this group of Serbian Radical Party volunteers in Zvornik. I learned
13 later of his statement that he gave to the Prosecution and that there he
14 says that he did not go with this group of Serbian Radical Party
15 volunteers but that he had joined them in the organisation of the
16 association of Serbs from Bosnia-Herzegovina to guard the Glinica Factory
17 with a small group of people and that he had gone there from treatment at
18 Banja Junakovic and that he remained in Zvornik until mid-May. And in
19 late May he appeared at the Serbian Radical Party rally in Podgorica
20 where an attempt on my life was made. He could not have been a Vojvoda
21 at that time, he was promoted to the rank of Vojvoda only in 1993.
22 I can agree with you that I know the most but I don't know
23 everything, although I'm trying to learn everything but that's
24 impossible. This is the situation that I am in. Perhaps I will obtain
25 the statement from Miroslav Vukovic, Cele, during the break. It will be
1 a short statement but the Prosecution has to provide the official
2 transcript of the interview with him because we will need it for future
3 witnesses, witnesses who had seen him there and who mention his name.
4 So I am not denying that there is a link between me and Cele.
5 Cele was the deputy commander of the volunteers in Trpinje in eastern
6 Slavonia, he was promoted to the rank of the Chetnik Vojvoda. In late
7 1992, he was elected into the parliament on the Serbian Radical Party
8 slate, but he was not in this group of volunteers that were sent by the
9 Serbian Radical Party in April 1992 to Zvornik. This was all organized
10 by the JNA. That is the gist of it. Because he remained there longer
11 than the volunteers did.
12 How can I prove that? On the one hand I will have the statement,
13 on the other hand, the interview that he gave to the Prosecution. I hope
14 that I will get the statement during the break by fax and this statement
15 from the Prosecution should also come in.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. We'll have the
17 break. If the Prosecutor during the break could find the statement in
18 Serbian and disclose it to the accused, it would be a good thing. I
19 don't know if 20 minutes is enough for you to find this statement.
20 Mr. Mundis.
21 MR. MUNDIS: Perhaps Mr. Marcussen can answer that question,
22 Mr. President.
23 MR. MARCUSSEN: I think the accused is talking about a statement
24 that he is anticipating receiving from the witness. It's not a statement
25 that OTP has. We have a set of recordings, not a statement. But that's
1 correct, the accused is nodding. He's anticipating receiving a statement
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. So you cannot give
4 him a hard copy in Serbian of this statement made by Mr. Cele to the OTP.
5 You don't have this at your disposal, is that it?
6 MR. MARCUSSEN: That's correct.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. We'll have a
8 20-minute break.
9 --- Recess taken at 10.10 a.m.
10 --- On resuming at 10.30 a.m.
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. I would like the
12 registrar to tell us where we stand regarding time. If I'm not mistaken,
13 I believe that Mr. Seselj must have an hour and 30 minutes left.
14 Witness, please, I have a question for you and I think it's an
15 important question, like all of my questions, but this one is really
17 We have just discovered that on February 26th, 1993, i.e., not
18 long after what happened to you, you made an official statement you
19 signed relating what had happened, and giving the names of the
20 perpetrators of what had been done to the prisoners. Then a few years
21 later in 1996, you were heard by the OTP once again, and then here you
22 integrate Seselj's men. You integrate them by drawing a sketch of the
23 administrative building where, on the second floor, you're saying that
24 there's presence of these -- of Seselj's men.
25 So I'm wondering why it is that on February 26th, 1993, you
1 didn't say it right away. Why did you wait a couple of years to say
2 this? So I'm wondering whether your memory wasn't refreshed in 1996 and
3 that your memory being refreshed, you were able to locate Seselj's men on
4 the sketch.
5 So could you please tell us what exactly this is all about.
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] As for an explanation, I gave a
7 great many statements, different ones, to some sort of human rights
8 organisations that were milling around me from the moment I arrived,
9 until my latest, most recent statements. And already at the time, I knew
10 that certain men were Seselj's men because that's what they were referred
11 to by others while we were incarcerated and quite simply, when the
12 investigator came in 1996, that is, I did my best to provide as detailed
13 information as possible within the frameworks of my knowledge.
14 Now, how come that is not to be found in what I provided in 1992
15 or 1993 whenever it was, 1993, I think, I can't remember having given
16 that statement, but I'm quite sure that it was about the same people, if
17 you look at the nicknames and everything else, you would be able to
18 deduce that it's about the same people.
19 Now, whether the person who took down the statement at the time
20 skipped over certain things or -- well, I don't know. I can't really
21 say. He might not have taken down the events as I recounted them. I
22 can't remember now. But if you look at the chronology and look at the
23 names of the people that appear there, then I knew in 1992 as well
24 because the other guards and the soldiers that we came into contact with
25 or rather we heard through the guards, that they were Seseljevci or
1 Seselj's men, that's what people called them, so I'm telling you this on
2 the basis of what I heard, I could not myself ascertain who belonged to
3 what organisation, who, what, where, when. So I'm recounting it to the
4 best of my recollections and knowledge. So neither in 1992 or 1996 can I
5 say with certainty that they were Seselj's men and I can't do that today
6 because I don't have insight into the documents to tell me who was a
7 member of Seselj's party or not. I just said what I heard from the other
8 guards and perhaps because I said that I had heard this, the person
9 taking down the statement failed to record it, failed to put it in the
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Thank you for this
12 answer. The cross-examination will now resume. The registrar gave me
13 the time left. You have one hour and 45 minutes left, Mr. Seselj.
14 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
15 Q. Mr. VS-1013, I assume that in the place you live now and watch
16 television and that you follow the press, read the papers, that you have
17 certainly heard that there was a trial ongoing in Belgrade against six
18 persons accused of war crimes against the Muslim prisoners and civilians
19 in Zvornik. Have you heard about that?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Among those six, four of them are Zoks, Toro, Lopov, and Bosonac,
22 those were their nicknames, the names that they used. I don't even have
23 to state their names. Do you know that they are there? And I have
24 documents where their names appear but that's not important because it's
25 not my intention to deal with whether they are in fact responsible and
1 guilty of something or not. I assume that a special court for war crimes
2 in Belgrade would have to diligently investigate this and make the right
3 judgements, so I'm not going to doubt the outcome and I'm not going to
4 deal with whether they did something or not.
5 What I have here are certain documents which arrived yesterday
6 and which I'm going to show you now and I'd like to hear your comments.
7 They are three statements. One is a statement by Milorad Gogic, you've
8 heard about him, have you not? He was the commander of this Loznica,
9 group, is that right?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Anyway, he declares himself as being one of Arkan's men here and
12 then we have Sava Sinadinovic's statement, you might not have heard of
13 him, it's a short statement. And Vojin Vuckovic, nicknamed Zuc, I'm sure
14 you've heard of him. I have his statement.
15 A. Yes, I have heard of him.
16 Q. Well, as I have copies for all members of the Trial Chamber and
17 for the Prosecution, that we place it on the overhead projector, the
18 first of those documents and we'll go through it. I'm going to read out
19 the paragraphs one by one and you can give me your comments, state your
20 opinion and so on, what you know about whether it is true or not.
21 First we have the statement by Milorad Gogic and we have his
22 particular set out here, his address, the ID card number, and all other
23 data so that the Prosecutor can check all this out during the day as he
24 did in Goran Stopovic's case and the documents that I presented in that
25 regard. And here is what he says, "I hereby state" and I quote, first
1 paragraph: "That with a group of volunteers from Loznica, mostly my
2 friends, I went to Zvornik at the beginning of April 1992 at the
3 invitation of the late commander Zeljko Raznjatovic, Arkan, to whom I was
4 taken by his deputy the late Marko Pejic, Peja, who I knew from before
5 because I was an active boxer. My group, which was in Zvornik known as
6 Gogic's group, was the sole group that took part in the liberation of
7 Zvornik under the commander of the Serbian volunteer guard and of course
8 members of the guard who were not from Loznica but who were brought in
10 Then he goes on to say that they never mistreated civilians or
11 prisoners of war and that it was only after the liberation that he heard
12 that certain crimes had been committed and that he didn't know who the
13 perpetrators were. He assumes that they were self-organised paramilitary
14 formations who were to blame.
15 Then he goes on to say, "I remember that over there, the groups
16 that were active were Pivarski's, Niski, Vojin Vuckovic, Zuca's group,
17 the Yellow Wasps, the White Eagles, and during a certain period, a group
18 separated from Zuca, that was led by Zena [phoen] the Chetnik and there
19 were goodness knows how many other groups. Quite simply, a few people
20 would gather together and without anybody's command as they saw fit, they
21 would move around Zvornik and the surrounding parts and stories linked to
22 looting and the persecution of civilian persons and all other acts were
23 linked to them, acts that were not commensurate with decent soldiers of
24 the kind that were in my group and the group I headed.
25 Do you have any comments to make to that?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Go ahead.
3 A. Well, first of all, during my testimony yesterday in what I said,
4 I mentioned that we loaded up some goods for Gogic on one occasion.
5 That's the first point. He had a red Golf car.
6 Number two, secondly, his group, well, they called themselves as
7 belonging to him, and they didn't come into -- but Stuka, Sarma [phoen],
8 Kardelj, they were the people I mentioned yesterday, Mile Rogonja and the
9 rest, friends of his from Loznica. How should I put this? They beat us
10 most. And I do know that a prisoner, I don't want to mention his name in
11 open session, with another man, I remember that man's name -- well, I
12 remember him mostly by his nickname, but this group of Loznica men took
13 them to the kindergarten, the nursery that was in the centre of Zvornik
14 and they cleaned it up because they said the Loznicari were put up there,
15 according to what they told me, and they said that they would come across
16 blood everywhere and footwear and things like that when they cleaned up
17 the place.
18 Furthermore, a group of people who was incarcerated in the SUP
19 building in Zvornik and there is a man, he is married now, who's still
20 alive, and a man from Gogic's group, Stuka, the leader, carved in a cross
21 on his forehead with a knife and you can see the scar today. So that's
22 as far as when people said that they had nothing to do with that.
23 Now, as for this other part, Pivarski, we would also see him, he
24 introduced himself as Pivarski and he didn't have half a hand. And
25 although I can't say that I ever saw him do any harm to anyone. Niski, I
1 also mentioned him yesterday. Now, whether some things were staged or
2 not, I don't want to go into that, but I just remember on one occasion,
3 if I can recount a detail, if the court considers it important.
4 Q. Just may I have brief answers, please, because my time is
5 limited. We will have time to go into them, you've already mentioned
6 some things but let's see what Gogic has to say in his statement further
7 down and then you will be able to comment.
8 A. Well, I knew Niski anyway. Vojin Vuckovic, Zuta, I have heard of
9 the Yellow Wasps, or Zuta Osa. As for the Beli Orlovi White Eagles, I
10 don't know who their leader was, there were various groups and
11 Simo Chetnik, I don't know. I have perhaps heard of him but I really
12 don't know about him.
13 Q. All right. We -- I skipped a sentence here where he says that
14 when he went to Zvornik, there were no members of the Serbian Radical
15 Party there but that many introduced themselves as being Vojvodas and
16 that is in between the two underlined paragraphs.
17 Now he goes on to describe Zvornik's liberation on the 9th of
18 April, he said he returned to Loznica on the 13th of April and then he
19 was called by Colonel Stupar, he was the commander of the Special Pancevo
20 Brigade, the unit from Pancevo, to assist in the liberation of Kula Grad.
21 And he goes on to say that on the 26th of April, Kula Grad fell, and then
22 on page 2, and I've underlined this portion, what I would like to focus
23 on, which is the interesting part for you to comment, he says: "On that
24 day, my deputy was killed, Branko Djokic. And my group together with me,
25 that same evening withdrew from Zvornik. In the meantime, in the Zvornik
1 MUP, as chief, Milos Pantelic was appointed, a retired policeman from
2 Loznica, who before that was for many years chief of the traffic police.
3 "In view of the fact that various paramilitary units which I've
4 already spoken about continued to move around Zvornik unrestrained, I was
5 invited by Arkan to return to Zvornik to help out Pantelic to establish
6 law and order in town. I did go back to Zvornik at about the 10th of
7 May, 1992 and there, I formed a special police unit and led that unit.
8 "Since that time, I was under the command of the chief,
9 Milos Pantelic and the chief of the state security, Goran Jugic and I
10 received orders exclusively from them.
11 "I was invited to come back to Zvornik, first of all because of
12 the problems that were caused there by Zuca's unit, I immediately upon my
13 arrival called up Zuca to have a talk with him and I gave him a deadline
14 by which he should leave Zvornik with his men so that the situation could
15 return to normal in town.
16 "Zuca left Zvornik and took control of Crni Vrh. I was wounded
17 in an action at Kamenica on the 30th of May, 1992 and the commander of
18 the unit which I had formed was taken over by my deputy Milos Zetsic who
19 otherwise was a staff Glinica and was born in Loznica and he was also a
20 former boxer, very heavily-built man.
21 "After I was wounded and after I left Zvornik while I was in
22 hospital, I was visited by the then president of the municipality
23 Brano Grujic and the chief of MUP, Milos Pantelic, and they complained to
24 me that they had problems with my men, who most probably behaved in an
25 unseemly manner because in those actions in Zvornik, we in fact had lost
1 a number of men, specifically in Kamenica where I myself was wounded.
2 "Of us, 23 were killed and another two in addition to me were
3 wounded. When I recuperated, I went to Zvornik to disband the unit and I
4 did that in mid-June 1992.
5 "Now, whether any of my men in the meantime returned to Zvornik,
6 I cannot know that because they were private visits and I would go there
7 myself because at that time, I was going out with a girl from Zvornik and
8 she is my present wife. So with my girlfriend, I went to the seaside in
9 July and a group of people from my unit returned to Zvornik. I assume
10 pursuant to somebody's invitation and they waited for me to return from
11 the seaside in order to become included in the SUP of Zvornik again. I
12 was no longer interested in anything like that and I received information
13 that the authorities of Republika Srpska would arrest members of the
14 paramilitary formations in Zvornik. So I definitely returned from
15 Zvornik at the end of July, the day before this round-up and arrest.
16 "From the very beginning, the unit that I commanded and let me
17 repeat, it was part of the Serbian volunteer guard, and with me, there
18 were Zeljko Mitrovic, nicknamed Stuka; Dejan, Kurkin; Novak Senadin, aka
19 Lale who is 100 per cent invalid without an arm and a leg; Prlic,
20 nickname Prlje; Adamovic nicknamed Sanic; Mile Curic nicknamed Rogonja;
21 Rade Zvanji [phoen] nicknamed Kardelj; Zoran nicknamed Macak; Rajkovic,
22 nicknamed Sarma; Roki whose name I don't remember; Zeba and others.
23 "I do know at that time in Zvornik, there was a so-called
24 Kraljevacka Grupa from Kraljevo which also acted independently and that
25 the leader of that group was Dragan Slavkovic, nicknamed Toro, whom I in
1 fact did not know but I knew of his existence.
2 "There were some other groups there too from the territory of
3 Zvornik municipality. In fact, they were from the surrounding villages
4 to Zvornik, for example, Kobra, Glavonja, Jelat. A man called -- some
5 Jovici people, I didn't know them personally because they were people
6 from the local area and did not belong to any of the units I mentioned
7 earlier on."
8 Now we come to the last paragraph which says: "In Arkan's guard
9 there was a man nicknamed Niski who after the withdrawal of the Serbian
10 volunteer guard remained and formed his own unit which acted as a
11 paramilitary unit. The paramilitary unit, [Indiscernible] also had a
12 paramilitary unit. I don't know how many men it numbered. I remember
13 that in Zvornik, there was an elderly man from Snagovo who introduced
14 himself as being a Vojvoda and everybody addressed him as Vojvoda. He
15 always wore a Serbian peasant cap with a cockade but he didn't belong to
16 a single formation. I know that not a single paramilitary unit had
17 anything to do with the Serbian Radical Party."
18 Then he goes on to state that he gave the statement voluntarily
19 without any pressure or coercion and that he agreed that it could be used
20 in The Hague Tribunal. We have the stamp of the 4th Municipal Court and
21 District Court in Belgrade on the 24th of March and it was faxed to me on
22 the 25th of March.
23 Now, having heard this statement of his read out or most of the
24 statement read out, do you consider that this group, Gogic's group,
25 represented volunteers of the Serbian Radical Party or not?
1 A. [No interpretation]
2 MR. MARCUSSEN: I'm not receiving any interpretation.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Could I please go to the bathroom
4 very briefly and I'll be back? Very quickly.
5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Marcussen, can you then go over
6 all the text during the break. I am tired from reading this document.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Please do.
8 [The witness withdrew]
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. The president, to avoid wasting
10 time, can I please say something that is of procedural nature. I've just
11 received by fax Miroslav Vukovic's statement and I provided it to the
12 registry staff to photocopy that statement, I have not been provided a
13 photocopy yet and there is also a copy from my book. It is press
14 conference statement given in 1992 and I would like to present this to
15 the witness as well. I delivered all this to The Hague Tribunal in 2003
16 together with a set of all of my 80 books.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So you would like to adduce
18 part of your book which has been disclosed to the Prosecution. You asked
19 it to be translated and it hasn't been translated.
20 The Prosecutor, do you have any objections or not as far as this
21 book is concerned?
22 MR. MARCUSSEN: I think Your Honours have already allowed the use
23 of these kind of statements and similar written material during
24 cross-examination so in order to expedite proceedings, I'm willing to
25 accept the use of these documents today. I would like to make a point
1 though. The accused has read into the record an entire statement. I
2 suspect he will be reading other material and the rest of the statements
3 into the record.
4 I don't know whether the accused -- what the accused's intention
5 of doing that is but it's the Prosecution's position that this is not
6 evidence of the truth of the contents of the statement. If the accused
7 wants to introduce this as evidence in the case, he must do it during his
8 Defence case and he must produce witnesses or comply with the rules of
9 evidence for the admission of written material in court.
10 So I just want to make sure that there's no confusion later on
11 about whether or not the accused has introduced any evidence into the
12 record during cross-examination. I'm sure Your Honours, of course, are
13 not confused about this but the accused should not be under any
14 misapprehension as to what he has managed to receive during
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, as far as your book
17 is concerned, you are not going to read all the excerpts into the
18 transcript because this is a waste of time. Just put a question to the
19 witness. "I have written a book which I'm sure you haven't read. On
20 page 155, for instance, I say, this and that," and I -- you summarise it,
21 you summarise what is on page 155 and then you put the question to him,
22 "Do agree with me or not?"
23 Now, if you would like to adduce this as evidence, you will have
24 ample opportunity to adduce these documents through your own witnesses.
25 As far as facts are concerned, the facts that were said to you by the
1 person whom you read out, the Chamber has taken a majority decision on
2 this, you can, on the basis of a document like this one, put a question
3 to the witness but the Trial Chamber has decided not to admit such
4 statements which in the view of the Trial Chamber has decided in the
5 majority not to give it any probative value.
6 However, you are entitled to call to witness the person who has
7 written the statement and then you can put the question to him directly,
8 once you call your own witnesses.
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. President, the Prosecutor
10 launched a discussion about nothing, not for a moment did I ask for these
11 statements to be admitted. I have obtained these statements in order to
12 be able to present them to the witness and hear his opinion on them, his
13 position, his experience with this regard. And in that sense, I'm using
14 these statements. What I am denying the right of the Prosecution to do
15 is for tendering statements directly into the file. I have the right to
16 present the parts of different people's statements on cross-examination.
17 I have not read the entire statement. I have read most of it and I'm
18 just going to read short excerpts from the other statements and I believe
19 that I marked only two passages in my book, please don't be intimidated
20 by the number of pages, I'm not going to read the entire book but just
21 the two marked passages, and I have photocopied the whole press
22 conference in order to show you the entirety of that press conference and
23 I also photocopied the title page of the book.
24 Please, I would like to ask the Prosecution not to preempt things
25 that are not going to happen. I have put the witness this question just
1 to jog his memory. After having been faced with the largest part of
2 Milorad Gogic's statement, does he still believe that the so-called group
3 from Loznica that Gogic was in command of was a group of volunteers from
4 the Serb Radical Party? That's all what I would like to know.
5 [The witness entered court]
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] First of all, I apologise for what
7 happened a little while ago. And second of all, I never said that Gogic
8 was a member of the Serb Radical Party. I put him in the Kraljevo group
9 and here, there are a large number of names that I've also mentioned.
10 And third of all, there are some things that are correct in the statement
11 but there are also some things that are not correct in the statement.
12 When we look at the names of the people who appear in the
13 statement, you will see that in my statement, the same names appear
14 especially people from Loznica who beat us most and who inflicted the
15 most harm on us.
16 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
17 Q. Mr. VS-1013, I told you that four of these men are being tried in
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And I don't want to prejudice that matter. What I would like to
21 hear from you is that they were not members of the Serb Radical Party
22 although you said that you never claimed that?
23 A. I said that they were a group from Loznica with insignia of the
24 military police. I believe that you will find it in my statements. They
25 had the war militia's insignia, and the first time they beat us in
1 Standards and when Niski opposed them, they said to report to Major Marko
2 if there is something unclear to you because they had the insignia of the
3 war police unlike Toro who had the insignia of a major, military major on
4 the left-hand side.
5 Those who served in the army will know that the ranks are not
6 worn on the shoulder but on the left-hand side of the blouse. And we
7 heard from them and from the others that their leader at the beginning
8 was Vojvoda Cele. Why I'm saying that at the beginning because later
9 on --
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. President, the witness is now
11 talking about other things. Let's deal with Gogic's group first. Now
12 he's talking about the Kraljevo group. And if we have agreed on Gogic's
13 group, that they were not the volunteers of the Serb Radical Party, let's
14 take things one at a time. Let's not allow the witness to answer my
15 question by talking about something else. I'm asking him about one group
16 and he's talking about another group.
17 I just wanted to intervene in order to stop wasting time.
18 A. I just wanted to clarify things.
19 Q. Now I would like to show you a short statement that deals with
20 Pivarski because you mentioned him as well, didn't you?
21 A. Yes. Pivarski arrived on one occasion and he brought a man when
22 we were at Ekonomija and then he came back again to inspect on us. And
23 he told the guards not to beat that man that he had brought, I would not
24 want to mention his name in open session. And Pivarski also came once
25 when we were incarcerated at Ciglana and he told us that he was a fighter
1 and that people who beat prisoners were nothing for him and he gave us
2 cigarettes. He distributed cigarettes amongst us.
3 He missed half a hand.
4 Q. So you do not accuse him of any crimes?
5 A. No, not as far as I could tell he did not commit any crimes.
6 Q. I have a statement by Sava Sinadinovic, he is the president of
7 the district in Banat, who says that at the time, Pivarski was not a
8 volunteer of the Serb Radical Party and since Pivarski was killed on the
9 21st of January 1994, you do not ascribe any crimes to him or misdeeds to
10 him so we don't have to deal with him?
11 A. As far as I know, and as far as I can remember, I did not see him
12 beating anybody. I know that he did bring in some people who stayed at
13 Ekonomija later on but I never saw him coming and torturing any of the
14 people who were incarcerated with me.
15 Q. And you did not know at the time that he was a member of the Serb
16 Radical Party?
17 A. No.
18 Q. But he wasn't and you never claimed he was?
19 A. Yes, you're right.
20 Q. Very well, then. Then we don't have to deal with this statement
21 but what we will find more interesting is a statement provided by Vojin
22 Vuckovic, Zuca, who provides his particulars here and I don't have to
23 repeat them.
24 In the second paragraph of his statement, he says: "I went
25 together with Miroslav Bogdanovic, Ulemek Semic, also known as Legija, my
1 brother Dusa Vuckovic on the 7th of April, 1992 to Zvornik where I was
3 Can you please put it on the ELMO.
4 "At that moment, I did not belong to any political party although
5 I was in possession of the membership card of the Serbian Chetnik
6 Movement which I had left on the 3rd of September, 1991. After the
7 liberation from detention Ulemek talked to Brano Grujic, the president of
8 the SDS, and the unofficial commander of the TO Zvornik, Marko Pavlovic.
9 "Upon Ulemek's proposal, the president of the SDS, Brano Grujic,
10 appointed me the commander of the volunteers Zvornik around the 10th of
11 April, 1992."
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, please read more
13 slowly because the interpreters are having a hard time.
14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] "Between the 10th and 13th of
15 April, 1992, I was officially appointed commander of the volunteers under
16 the command of the staff of the Territorial Defence of Zvornik. During
17 the period that I was in Zvornik between the 9th of April and 17th of May
18 and the 2nd of July to 22nd of July 1992, I provided the chronological
19 description of events to the special court in Belgrade.
20 "During my stay in Zvornik, I was familiar with the name
21 Dragan Toro who belonged to the Kraljevo group, the group numbered about
22 52 members who belonged to the White Eagles. Their commander was
23 Zoran Petrovic also known as Azedeja [phoen].
24 The White Eagles formation belonged to the Serbian popular
25 renewal. The territorial staff of Zvornik had several groups of
1 volunteers, among them was a group of volunteers from Sombor under the
2 commands of Pivarski and I don't know his name, but we have his name, we
3 know his name. That group numbered about 15 volunteers who were under
4 the authority of the Territorial Defence and Marko Pavlovic.
5 As far as I know, that group did not belong to the Serb Radical
6 Party and they were isolated from other volunteers from the engineering
7 barracks. The aforementioned group was not under my command either.
8 According to my information that I received.
9 Subsequently, the person we nicknamed Pufta is not from Serbia;
10 he hails from Zenica in Bosnia-Herzegovina. That person did also not
11 belong to the Serb Radical Party but to the Drina Wolves group,
12 Captain Miloje was in command of that group and that group belonged to
13 the Zvornik brigade. The person known as Dragan, whose family name I
14 don't know and whose nickname was Niski, was married to a girl from
15 Borovo Selo and he belonged to the Serbian volunteer guard whose
16 commander was Major Pera.
17 Zeljko Raznjatovic, Arkan, was the Commander of Serb volunteers.
18 Sasa, I know as a close friend, and Brano Grujic was the local. So it
19 was possible that Brano Grujic engaged them in raising volunteers for the
20 Territorial Defence of Zvornik.
21 Sasa commanded the group of some 15 and 20 volunteers from
22 Mali Zvornik but I don't know that they were members of the Serb Radical
23 Party. Sinisa Filipovic I knew personally. He had arrived with a group
24 of 16 volunteers from Zuma. They say that they were members of the Serb
25 Radical Party. This group of volunteers arrived at the beginning of
1 April and they were not deployed in any unit although they participated
2 in the liberation of Zvornik.
3 After that period of the 10th of April, 1992, they were assigned
4 to the TO Zvornik and they were told to report me to the engineers
5 together with their Commander Simo also known as Chetnik. I acted upon
6 the order and I accepted that unit.
7 I checked the group. I made a telephone call to the Serb Radical
8 Party at the Ohridska Street in Belgrade in order to check on that group.
9 The secretary whose name was Lada Zilevic [phoen] confirmed to me that
10 the Serb Radical Party had not sent a group of volunteers from Zuma. As
11 far as I know, Sinisa Filipovic had never served in the army because he
12 was not more than 18 or 19 years of age at the time.
13 I met Gogic only after the liberation of Kula after the 27th of
14 April, 1992. In his units, there were Zeljko Stuka, Dejan, Sarma and
15 Mila. They belonged to the boxing club in Loznica that Gogic led and
16 they arrived in the police camouflage uniform with complete armament,
17 long and short rifles.
18 From Vojislav Jekic they had received weapons and they received
19 all the orders from the Territorial Defence staff. As far as I know,
20 this group had not been sent out by the Serb Radical Party and they did
21 not belong to me either.
22 Then he says about some names that he is not familiar with that
23 they don't ring a bell, Milan Acimovic, Jaje, Sava, Brada, Brka.
24 These names do not ring a bell and then he states that he provided his
25 statement voluntarily, that the statement can be used and on the last
1 page, you have a confirmation that this was certified by the 4th
2 Municipal Court in Belgrade.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] [Previous translation
4 continues] ... slowly because the court reporter can't keep up with you.
5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, in this case, I suppose that
6 they can correct it because they have a written text before them and they
7 can do it based on the video recording. I'm afraid that time is passing
8 very quickly and that was the reason why I was reading quickly, but I'm
9 going to do it more slowly.
10 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
11 Q. Based on this statement, sir, do you believe that Zuca had a
12 reason to lie when identifying these people or he can be trusted because
13 he knew these people and he was there on the spot?
14 A. Whether he lies or not, I can only say on my part, and from the
15 facts that I'm familiar with, from what I know, I still believe that I'm
16 not competent to say whether somebody's lying or not. There are facts
17 which are credible. There are also facts which in my view are not
18 credible. If I could follow you, but I would like to be able to go back
19 to the text again, if I may, I cannot obviously say at the moment
20 whether -- or to what extent was this group from Kraljevo close to the
21 SRS or not but according to my information, they were close judging from
22 what they were saying.
23 There were other groups and names that appear in my statements as
24 well and the two statements more or less concur, although I'd never
25 inspected anybody's documents in order to ascertain some people's party
1 affiliation, so I believe that there is a concurrence here because in the
2 conversations that we listened to, they said those things. I did not
3 have any insight into those documents. I am just basing my statement on
4 what I saw and heard and the conclusions that I arrived at from those
5 things. In other ...
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, this is also an
7 important moment. You claimed on several occasions that Dragan Toro was
8 from Kraljevo and this man, Toro, you characterise him as a Seselj's man
9 and you said that umpteen times. Now, we have here a statement saying
10 that as a matter of fact, Toro is a member of the White Eagles. The
11 White Eagles, that's another political party, that's the Serbian Renewal
12 Movement, that's not the Serbian Radical Party. So aren't you confused
13 in your mind?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's why I said at the outset
15 that there are things that are accurate and things that I agree but also
16 there are things that I don't agree with and I wanted to go back to that.
17 So there are quite a few names that are repeated throughout my statement
18 and that tally on what is in those statements. But based on what I saw,
19 what I heard, what I went through, and based on what they were talking
20 about amongst themselves, the Kraljevo group were Seselj's men. That's
21 the way they represented themselves to us and that's how other people
22 spoke about them. So if somebody congratulates somebody else on his
23 promotion, that Seselj had promoted him and this other man then thanks
24 for the congratulations then he is a member of that party.
25 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
1 Q. But why then in your statement that you provided in Vienna less
2 than a year after your ordeal, why did you not say that these were
3 Seselj's men, that they said that they were Seselj's men? You'd never
4 mentioned Seselj's men. You got some more information from the Muslim
5 secret police AID.
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Prosecutor.
7 MR. MARCUSSEN: It has been asked and answered by the witness
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Seselj. You seem to
10 suggest without any evidence, unless you have evidence, but if you do
11 have evidence, you've got to produce it. You seem to say that from
12 Vienna to The Hague, or during that period, the witness was contacted by
13 the secret service from Bosnia-Herzegovina, that basically prompted him
14 on this matter. What do you base this on, is this just speculation or is
15 it something certain? If this is a certainty, you have to support this
16 with really strong evidence.
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. President, you saw in the case
18 of the Croat witnesses that the Prosecution has submitted evidence to me
19 of the fact that they had been processed by the Croatian intelligence
20 service prior to their testimony. I know that the OTP has evidence that
21 the AID prepped witnesses for their testimony before the Tribunal in
22 The Hague. This is an open secret in Republika Srpska and if you are now
23 asking me to go into the AID archives myself and to get evidence, I can't
24 do that but the Prosecution can do that. But I have reliable
25 information. I can't prove it. I can ask every witness whether they
1 were questioned by the AID and every each and one of them will say no.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, I'm going to ask the
3 question again. You know that you are under oath and if you ever do any
4 perjury, you may find yourself in jail. You are aware of that, aren't
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Did the secret service contact
8 you before you came to testify? Answer with a yes or with a no.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Well ...
11 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, Mr. President, I can say --
13 Q. At page 11 of your 1996 statement, second paragraph, you say that
14 Major Dragan, nicknamed Toro, from Kraljevo had a black military booklet
15 that a identified him as a member of Seselj's army; is that so?
16 A. If I may correct you, I said that on one occasion when we were
17 loading things up in Zvornik, Major Toro took out a large sum of German
18 marks and handed it over to Pufta telling him, "You know how to do a good
19 job." And then from other pocket, he retrieved another heap of German
20 marks. We were standing up there on the truck loading things up. And if
21 you see a large amount of money, this is something that simply is quite
22 riveting. Everybody looked at him. And there was some kind of a card
23 that looked like a booklet. I never did say that I saw his membership
24 card or anything. There was something left in his hand. He was holding
25 it in his hand. It was black. I can't recall whether the letters were
1 gold or silver but it says, Serbian Radical Party. Now, whether this was
2 his membership card or not, I can't say that because I did not hold that
3 in my hand. I was maybe -- the distance between the two of us was
4 probably as the distance between me and the lady who is sitting here in
5 front of me. I saw this large amount of cash that he was holding in his
6 hand and this drew my attention and I looked at it and that's why I kept
7 looking and I saw it. And that's what I said, it looked like a card.
8 Q. Well, your statement at page 11 states something quite
9 differently. Could I please have it up on the screen both in English and
10 in Serbian. This can be done, this can also be shown to the public.
11 Second paragraph, page 11 of your statement.
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Are you able to do that.
13 MR. MARCUSSEN: I don't believe the statement is uploaded into
14 e-court as an exhibit so we will have to work from a hard copy.
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Please don't take the one that I
16 have. That's the only one that I have. Could you please take it from
17 the Prosecution. He has the Serbian version too.
18 MR. MARCUSSEN: We are being turned into the accused's case
19 manager, I note.
20 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, you should have been my
21 assistants five years ago if you done your job properly because you do
22 know that it is your obligation to prosecute those of having been
23 suspected of committing war crimes and to provide exculpatory material to
24 them so you were supposed to do that with the same diligence yet you
25 failed to do so and that's the problem of the Tribunal's Prosecution.
1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Let's leave aside any
2 criticism. We'll look at this document which we're going to put on the
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] If you have it in Serbian, if you
5 don't, then I'll give it to you. I've changed my mind.
6 Q. Can you see it now on the ELMO? It's the second paragraph at
7 page 11. You describe this Major Dragan, nicknamed Toro, and in last
8 sentence, could you please read the last sentence. It is your statement.
9 Could you please be so kind as to read the last sentence.
10 A. "I saw his black-coloured military ID that identified -- that
11 said he was a member of the Seselj's army."
12 Q. So what do we see from here? First of all, that this military ID
13 was black; is that right? And you had to see it from closer up to be
14 able to read that he was a member of Seselj's army. Did it say Seselj's
15 army on it?
16 A. Well, this is how it was. I probably said, I can't recall word
17 for word what I said, but I said what I told you. And probably as it was
18 interpreted into English and then back into Bosnian, some things were
19 worded differently and this is probably why this sentence reads as it
21 Q. Well, did you read the statement before you signed it?
22 A. Yes, I did.
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, please read out slowly
24 that sentence in your language, because we have the English version which
25 is being challenged. And it starts with the following word in your
1 language, "video," so please read out that sentence slowly.
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] "I saw his black military ID where
3 it was written he was a member of Seselj's army."
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. President, I asked for the
5 Serbian and the English version to be put side by side, if it's possible.
6 It was possible before when the Prosecution calls its evidence, then it's
7 possible. You don't have the English. What's the problem? You can put
8 one underneath the other. You can maybe bend the sheet of paper and put
9 it right underneath it. I'm all for modern technology, I'm an expert. I
10 would have found a solution right away.
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The registrar tells me that
12 that can be done on e-court, to have a split screen. And we can see that
13 on the ELMO as well.
14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] It says here: "[In English]
15 [Previous translation continues] ... coloured military ID that identified
16 him as a member of the Seselj army."
17 [Interpretation] It's a perfect translation, even I, who can't
18 speak English, can tell you that let alone those who actually speak
20 Q. [Interpretation] So the booklet was black and it identified him
21 as a member of Seselj's army. Well, I can't speak English but it's all
22 crystal clear to me right away. So it's the same, sir, in both
23 statements both in the English version and in the Serbian version, is
24 that not so, Mr. VS-1013?
25 A. Well, I'm not an expert for English language but that's probably
1 what it says.
2 Q. So in order for you to state that, you first had to see the black
3 military ID card; is that so?
4 A. Let me go back to what I've already told you and that is the way
5 in which I saw it, the circumstances. I explained to you how I came to
6 see it. I'm sure that after reading this statement, when most -- when 90
7 per cent of the things are correct, you don't go back to every comma,
8 every --
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, we understood what you
10 said, but you saw a card, a black card from a distance saying "Serbian
11 Radical Party," why don't you conclude from that that this is a card for
12 a political party? Whilst what you say that this is a card whose holder
13 is a member of the army. So you're talking about two different things.
14 What you saw, which was in black, Serbian Radical Party or
15 something like that, why do you draw the conclusion that this shows that
16 that person belongs to Seselj's army, if he had an army at all. As far
17 as you know, did Mr. Seselj have an army?
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I have some objections to your
19 question, Mr. President. The witness never mentioned the Serbian Radical
20 Party nor are there any black ID cards of the Serbian Radical Party. He
21 said a military ID card where it was written that he was a member of
22 the -- of Seselj's army. And throughout his statements, he talks about
23 Seselj's army and for me this is the crucial part of his statement
24 because this is where his whole testimony fails and that's why I am
25 insisting on this. I'm not going to insist on anything else.
1 First of all, what are those military ID cards that are black?
2 Nobody has ever seen them. I think that thousands of witnesses have gone
3 through the OTP and nobody ever mentioned any black military ID cards on
4 any side.
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, Witness, this piece of
6 cardboard or this card that you saw from a distance of some 10 metres
7 because you said that you were some distance which is the distance
8 between the lady in front of me and you, so that is some 10 metres. What
9 enables you to say that this card you saw was a military ID card? My
10 question is this: Aren't you making some confusion with a card showing
11 that that person who holds it is a member of a political party?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I cannot remember what
13 I had said at that time exactly, word for word, but I always say I heard,
14 I thought, whenever I'm talking about things that I did not personally
15 see. When I was giving this statement, I probably said to the person
16 taking the statement that it was probably this ID card. I did not see
17 this ID card to be able to claim that with 100 per cent certainty. So I
18 probably said it was probably some kind of a membership ID card or a
19 military ID card just as I said that to you.
20 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
21 Q. Could that have been an ID card from a funeral society? You know
22 that those things exist. You pay a certain fee on an annual basis and
23 then they pay for your funeral when you die. How were you able to say
24 that this was a military ID card?
25 A. Well, I didn't know that it was a military ID card. I didn't see
1 it. I assumed that this was some kind of a military ID card or a
2 membership ID card.
3 Secondly, it could have been of any character because I didn't
4 hold it in my hands. I wasn't able to see whether it contains the
5 information about the military assignment but let me repeat that I
6 probably phrased this in the same way as I did just now because I always
7 indicate that there is a certain level of probability involved in what I
8 say if this is something that I did not see myself.
9 Q. I am asking you about things that you say you saw. You did your
10 national service in the JNA?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. And I assume that you remember what the military ID card or
13 booklet of the JNA looked like. It was olive-green, it contained about
14 40 or 50 pages, it was maybe 12 by 6 centimetres, well, approximately
15 something like that?
16 A. Yes, approximately.
17 Q. Now, this booklet, was it the same size, bigger or smaller,
18 thicker or thinner, than the military JNA booklet?
19 A. I think it was smaller and thinner.
20 Q. You say smaller and thinner.
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. And it was black?
23 A. It was black and there was a cockade on it.
24 Q. You mean the two-headed eagle, the Serbian coat of arms?
25 A. Yes, yes.
1 Q. Now, did it say on it, "Seselj's army"?
2 A. It certainly didn't say that.
3 Q. Did it say the Serbian Radical Party?
4 A. It did say that.
5 Q. So on that booklet, it was written the Serbian Radical Party; is
6 that right?
7 A. Yes, I think it says Serbian Radical Party.
8 Q. Well then it could have been a membership card of the Serbian
9 Radical Party?
10 A. Well it could have been. It was some sort of card and in format
11 and size, it was in between the old type of ID cards used in the former
12 Yugoslavia and a military booklet.
13 Q. Well, the Serbian Radical Party now has about half a million
14 members and this is broadcast over the internet, it will be shown on
15 Serbian television this evening. And all half million people and those
16 10.000 who used to be members and then left the Serbian Radical Party
17 know full well that the Serbian Radical Party never had black booklets or
18 the Serbian Chetnik movement either, absolutely never.
19 So are you sure that that was a membership card then of the
20 Serbian Radical Party?
21 MR. MARCUSSEN: Okay. The witness didn't say that he knows that
22 it was a membership card of the Serbian Radical Party, it was put to him
23 as a proposition that it could have been a membership card. He said,
24 yes, it could have been and now he is being confronted with this as if he
25 affirmed himself that it actually was a membership card.
1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] There is another angle that
2 nobody ever saw before me. You saw this card with bank notes, we agree
3 on that, don't we, this card was held together with bank notes. The bank
4 notes must have been taken from Muslims because it seems that they were
5 looting at the time. Couldn't this card have come from somebody else?
6 What is there that makes it possible for you to connect the one holding
7 the card and him? Couldn't that card have been found somewhere else or
8 couldn't he have held the card? Because if it was his own card it would
9 be in his own wallet.
10 These bank notes, from what I understood, did not seem to come
11 from the wallet of that individual.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, Judge, he didn't take it out of
13 his wallet, he took it out together with the money, the wad of money that
14 I think he took out of this pocket here and then he separated that from
15 the wad and held it in his hand. And I said this -- well, it appears
16 that I claim but I said that I drew the conclusion on the basis of what I
17 saw it said on it and with the double-headed eagle, that that was it.
18 Because while he was handing over the money, he was holding this in his
19 other hand and then put it back in his right hand and then put it back in
20 his left hand pocket.
21 So I can't say with 100 per cent certainty that it was his,
22 that's my first point because I didn't see what it actually said inside,
23 I just assumed, this is my assumption. I assumed that it belonged to him
24 and that that was it, but I can't say with 100 per cent certainty that it
25 might not have been his proposal for a new card, for a new party card or
1 whatever, but I just saw this in his hand and from that I deduced what I
2 did and said that I assumed that that's what it was.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well, maybe we should move
4 on to something else.
5 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] I have a question. Do you
6 remember seeing the words, "Serbian Radical Party" written on it as you
7 said on page 70, line 11?
8 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, Judge, please.
9 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] [Previous translation continues]
10 ... Serbian Radical Party in the transcript, Serbian Radical party. I
11 don't know whether what you said was translated properly. This is why I
12 put the question to you again. Did you see the written words "Serbian
13 Radical Party"?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's what it said, the Serbian
15 Radical Party with the two-headed eagle. Now, how that was formulated,
16 well, sometimes I speak fast, so I go on from one thing to another.
17 Now, how it was recorded ...
18 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] Indeed. Since you mention in
19 your prior statement "Seselj's army," you do not speak of the
20 Serbian Radical Party in your prior statement, did you draw a conclusion
21 from the fact that the words Serbian Radical Party were written, did you
22 deduce from that, deduct from that or deduce that it was Seselj's army?
23 You see there is a contradiction and I don't quite understand it.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes, that was my conclusion.
25 That was my conclusion. Now, legally speaking, I don't know how you
1 differentiate between the two. At home, we -- well, there are a lot of
2 surnames that come from somebody's name, so the followers of someone
3 usually take their name from the leader, that's why I might have said it
4 that way.
5 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] Remember that you are a fact
6 witness so you're not here to draw conclusions, you are to testify as to
7 the facts. Please remember that.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, please continue.
9 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
10 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
11 Q. Mr. VS-1013, in your statement, the statement which you signed,
12 you said: "I saw his black-coloured military ID on which it said that he
13 was a member of Seselj's army."
14 Now, the fact that you're trying to make this statement relative
15 now is another matter altogether. However, on that same page you go on
16 to say the following when referring to Zoks and Pufta and Sasa, that they
17 held certain ranks in Seselj's army.
18 First of all, let me ask you how you recognised these men as
19 being Seselj's army, did it say Seselj's army on the uniform, perhaps?
20 What did it say on their uniforms?
21 A. First of all, I identified them the way other people, the
22 militaries and paramilitaries called them and they referred to them as
23 Seseljevci or Seselj's men. So I just took on this -- over this title
24 and that's what I called them later too.
25 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
1 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
2 Q. I'm not going to tire you anymore with this because I've achieved
3 my purpose because your entire statement and testimony has fallen through
4 on that one point. I'd like to draw your attention to the documents that
5 I received from the Prosecutor, some of them I found myself. You've
6 already said that you had heard that the special court in Belgrade is
7 conducting a trial against six individuals and I'd like to refer to the
8 transcript now of those legal proceedings from the interview of
9 Dragan Slavkovic, nicknamed Toro of the 1st of December, 2005, where on
10 page 5 he explains the following: He says that as a reservist, he was
11 engaged by Major Ratko Radojevic and Vesko Cvetkovic from Kos. And on
12 page 16 it says that as a sniper from the 12th to the 15th of April, he
13 carried out a certain assignment and went back home to Kraljevo.
14 Do you think he's telling the truth there or do you still claim
15 that he was a member of what you called Seselj's army?
16 A. Mr. Seselj, I saw him at Standard and with a group, Zoks and
17 Pufta and later some others, he took us over towards the end of May and
18 the beginning of June. Now what he did from the 4th to the 12th of April
19 or May, I really don't know. What I do know is that he came to Standard
20 when we were in Standard, that he filmed us with a video camera, we had
21 to give our first and last names, tell him where we were from and so on,
22 and afterwards, I saw him at the Ekonomija when he beat Bubica. I don't
23 think this. I claim this, I state that.
24 Q. Well, there's no need to reply what we already heard during the
1 A. I claim, I can't remember the date but whether it was the end of
2 May or beginning of June, I'm not quite sure, up until the beginning of
3 July or the end of June, we went with him and loaded up certain goods in
4 Zvornik. And the group that he led at the time, other people referred to
5 that group as Seseljevci, Seselj's men and that's all I can tell you.
6 The other soldiers and other groups referred to them as Seselj's
8 Q. But you didn't remember that when you gave your statement in
9 Vienna, isn't that right? And now I come to my next question: In the
10 transcript from the examination -- or from the 2nd of December, 2005 on
11 page 30 in the trial in Belgrade, the accused Ivan Korac, nicknamed Zoks,
12 states that as a volunteer he arrived in Zvornik at the invitation of the
13 Serbian association from Bosnia-Herzegovina with its headquarters in
14 Belgrade, Terazije 5 is the address, and he joined Stojan Pivarski's unit
15 where there was Darko Jankovic, Pufta, and Savo, who's surname he doesn't
16 know. Do you think he's lying in that statement in the trial against
17 him, that he has reason to lie about that?
18 A. What I can tell you is this: As far as I know, and it's up to
19 the Court to determine who is lying and who is not and I think I've been
20 invited here as a witness to see what he saw, where he saw it, and how it
21 happened, I know that Zoks went to Standard, used to come to Standard. I
22 know that he went to the Ekonomija with Vojvoda Cele and that he beat the
23 father of one of the prisoners whose father succumbed to the injuries and
25 Q. But I'm asking you something else.
1 A. Just a minute. I want to tell you what I know about Zoks. He
2 can say he's Prince Charles, as far as I'm concerned. I'm not an
3 attorney but I'm going to tell you what I know about him and I want to
4 say that I was a witness when Zoks, and I didn't say this because I
5 didn't have time to do that, he targeted Kemal Korkutevic with something,
6 with a cord and he was so frightened that --
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I think that the Trial Chamber
8 should intervene here. Judges, I can't challenge the story told by this
9 witness about what happened to him. Probably a large portion of his
10 testimony is the truth, I don't challenge that because crimes did happen.
11 I assume he was beaten up. But from the statement that he gave in
12 Vienna, we can see that that was of lesser intensity than later on. And
13 here, the Prosecutor asked for gymnastics in the courtroom, putting up
14 one hand and putting down another instead of giving us a medical report
15 telling us that he couldn't use his left arm properly. But I don't
16 challenge the fact that he went through a lot of suffering and there's no
17 need for him to repeat his testimony and waste my time.
18 I don't want to interrupt him and intervene. I think that that's
19 what the Trial Chamber should do and ask him to focus on answering my
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Witness, the only
22 question we're interested in as Judges is the following: We need to know
23 whether the group, Toro, Pufta, Zoks, Sasa, and Sava were volunteers of
24 the Serbian Radical Party. You seem to say that they were. However, you
25 are saying this because your other comrades were saying so. So this is
1 the core of the matter. We have a number of elements that seem to
2 contradict this.
3 For example, Zoks's statements and the statements of the others
4 of Toro and so on. They seem to be people hailing from Kraljevo. So are
5 you 100 per cent sure that people were saying that these were Seselj's
6 men or are you less than 100 per cent sure of that?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Judge, sir, according to everything
8 I learned while I spent time down there, not under the influence of my
9 friends who were together there with me, and if I want to meet them
10 today, I would hope that we discuss much nicer things because I can't put
11 anything right, what happened happened and I have to live with that so I
12 try to avoid those topics when I see them and talk to them today. So I
13 avoid the subject, that's my first point.
14 My next point is this, on several occasions I drew my own
15 conclusions and I have been accused of lying so I want to tell you what I
16 saw and heard. The other groups of the Serbian military and paramilitary
17 formations referred to them as Seselj's men. So it wasn't from my
18 friends, it was from these other units and formations who called them
19 that way. I took that on board and that's how I referred to them. I
20 didn't see IDs for me to be able to say that they were certainly that.
21 And a moment ago, the conclusions that I made on the basis of what I
22 experienced and my suffering are quite simply it turned out that I didn't
23 have the right to make any conclusions so I'm just saying what I saw and
24 what I heard now.
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, resume.
1 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
2 Q. Well, that is in collision with your Vienna statement. When you
3 gave the statement in Vienna, you hadn't heard that but you seem to have
4 heard it several years later when this was needed for certain political
5 purposes; isn't that right?
6 A. Would you tell me what political purposes you are referring to?
7 Q. Well, the political purposes thought up by the secret Muslim
8 service, AID.
9 A. Are you accusing me of something, Mr. Seselj.
10 Q. Well, I am accusing you of instrumentalising your suffering. You
11 were a victim, you are a victim. May I just say this to the witness, I'm
12 not insulting him in any way by saying it?
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Marcussen.
14 MR. MARCUSSEN: This is the third time the issue come up about
15 the allegation that there has been somebody influencing the witness.
16 Your Honours already ruled on this, that it was inappropriate without any
17 substantiation and now it's going on again, so I object to this line of
19 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Seselj. You alleged
20 this. I asked this of the witness directly. He denied it so don't come
21 back, please. You're wasting your time and you're wasting everybody's
23 JUDGE HARHOFF: Mr. Seselj. Mr. Seselj, you have referred a few
24 times to the declaration of the -- or the statement made in Vienna.
25 Could you please refresh my memory. To whom was this statement given?
1 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] This statement was given to the
2 representatives of the Muslim authorities in Sarajevo, the name of the
3 person is mentioned at the end. It was a lady. Let's avoid going into
4 closed session, I don't want to repeat the name, but you saw it and I can
5 find it for you again if need be. So the Muslim authorities from
6 Sarajevo sent people to talk to the immigrants and take statements about
7 the sufferings that they went through before they fled abroad. I'm not
8 doubting the veracity of that statement. I am doubting the subsequent
9 build-up and what the witness asked me just a minute ago. I really do
10 believe that he is a victim, that he went through a huge ordeal. I'm not
11 contesting that. I know that there were crimes in Zvornik. However,
12 this suffering of his is being instrumentalised by a build-up that
13 happened later. The Serbian Radical Party is now being artificially
14 imposed upon this witness and I would like to say that I have completely
15 contested and challenged this statement which is based on the
16 identification and of the military ID of Seselj's army.
17 But then his basic story about his sufferings and ordeal, I
18 believe it's true and I don't think anybody would be able to make all
19 that up but I also believe that these sufferings were built upon
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. It's time for a
22 break. We will break for 20 minutes and we will resume at 10 after 12.
23 You will have 45 minutes left. So theoretically we should be able to
24 finish the cross-examination.
25 --- Recess taken at 11.50 a.m.
1 --- On resuming at 12.10 p.m.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The hearing can resume.
3 Mr. Seselj, you have the floor.
4 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Mr. VS-1013, now we are going to deal with the statement provided
6 by Miroslav Vukovic, Celo, which I received only recently.
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] It has been copied for the Judges
8 and the Prosecutor. And I would also kindly ask for it to be placed on
9 the ELMO. We're going to go through just three short passages in that
11 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
12 Q. In the first paragraph, he provides his particulars where he was
13 born, where he resides, the number of ID, and so on and so forth. The
14 Prosecutor has already interviewed him for hours. He says:
15 "I state that I went to Zvornik on the 17th of April, 1992; that
16 I was not the leader of Seselj's men from Kraljevo, neither that I went
17 to Zvornik through the SRS. The Serbian Radical Party did not have a
18 unit from Kraljevo in the territory of Zvornik. On several occasions I
19 returned to Serbia and then went back to Zvornik in order to provide the
20 humanitarian aid. I left Zvornik for good on the 17th of May, 1992, when
21 the JNA withdrew from Zvornik."
22 You see here that he denies your allegations that he was in
23 command of the Kraljevo group. But what is interesting -- even more
24 interesting is the next paragraph in which he says that you provided a
25 false description of him. He watched the recording of the trial
1 yesterday on TV and he says:
2 "Yesterday, I watched the trial of Dr. Vojislav Seselj at the
3 Hague Tribunal and I was surprised with the lies that were provided by
4 the protected witness. I do not resemble physically to the man that he
5 describes as Vojvoda Celo, and in the period that the witness talked
6 about, I was not in Zvornik. My height is between 172 and 175
7 centimetres. At that time I did not weigh 100 kilos. I didn't have a
8 big belly; I don't have it now either. I don't have dark eyes. I never
9 sported long black hair. I did not have a long beard. I never died
10 either my beard or my hair. I never had colours in my hair. I'm a
11 normal man."
12 So he denies the description that you provided to this Court.
13 What do you say? Is he telling the truth? Or maybe you were confused
14 when you were providing your statement.
15 A. First and foremost, I'm not a painter, I can't paint him. I
16 tried to describe him based on my memory, the way I remember him.
17 Whether we are talking about the same height or the same weight, after
18 such a long period of time, that's how I remember him.
19 You know that it is very difficult to pinpoint somebody's weight
20 or height just by looking at them. I believe that my memory was much
21 better then than it is today, but I believe that I described him to the
22 best of my recollection and knowledge. Maybe I was off by a few
23 centimetres or a few kilogrammes.
24 Yesterday, when I was describing him, I said that I did my best
25 to try and estimate their height and weight, if that person was standing
1 next to me. After a certain period of time, it's very difficult to
2 recollect everything. I provided the description to the best of my
3 recollection and knowledge.
4 As for the rest that was said, the person that we saw in Standard
5 was referred to as Vojvoda Celo. The person that we saw at Ekonomija was
6 also referred to as Vojvoda Celo, which means that I adhered to my
7 statement that he appeared at Standard. And I also want to say that I
8 adhere to what I said, that he appeared at Ekonomija. How, who called
9 him, how he arrived, I don't know. I did not have an insight into that,
10 and this goes beyond my competencies. I am here to say what I saw and
11 what I know and what I assume is correct.
12 Q. Well, since you have identified so well, how come it never struck
13 you that he limps? You know what it means when a person limps. You come
14 from Bosnia; you understand the word. How come you didn't notice that?
15 A. While we were at Standard, Sasa told us that this gentleman
16 should not be looked in the eyes and we had to lower our eyes. I don't
17 know whether he limped or not. I don't remember that. And you know that
18 any normal person who is afraid sees things differently and cannot
19 remember all the details. I described him to the best of my knowledge.
20 Q. He denies the description that you provided and believes that you
21 have confused him with somebody else, and he goes on to say this: "After
22 the 14th of September, 1991, I have been an invalid of war." And I would
23 like to add to that that he was wounded in eastern Slavonia. And the
24 witness must have noticed that and I would like to add that everybody
25 notices that about him, that he limps.
1 He goes on to say that he says that a bayonet that you normally
2 mount on an automatic rifle, it's a very short metal knife. You know how
3 the bayonet on the Kalashnikov looks like.
4 A. Yes, I do.
5 Q. Very well, then. He says:
6 "I had a bayonet on an automatic rifle and I wore it by my left
7 knee, tied by two ropes; one below the knee and the other above the
9 You know that our soldiers copied heros from American movies and
10 wore their bayonets tied around their legs, and that's how he describes
12 I would like to call upon Mr. Ulrich Mussemeyer, who interviewed
13 me for three days at the Office of the International Criminal Tribunal in
14 Jelena Grusic Street in Belgrade, who saw me and I call upon him to
15 confirm this. He signed this and this was certified by the second
16 municipal court in Belgrade.
17 You could not identify Zuca either, and at the end of your
18 statement you said that there were two men by the name Zuca. Do you
19 remember that? Do you remember that?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. And you say in the last paragraph -- actually, the penultimate
22 paragraph, that there was one Zuca who was a military officer from
23 Belgrade and that he appeared while you were looting houses in the centre
24 of Zvornik in a car Sierra with Swiss registration plates; that he was
25 very tall, and Toro told that you this was Zuca from Zemun. And in the
1 last paragraph, you say there was another Zuca, Vojin Vuckovic, brother
2 of Dusan Repic, and so on so forth. You go on talking about him but that
3 is not important.
4 Are you aware that you are the only person who mentions two men
5 by the same nickname Zuca, that nobody else noticed that, that nobody
6 else is aware of an JNA officer by the name of Zuca, and so on and so
8 A. Mr. Seselj, the person whom Major Toro identified as Zuca from
9 Zemun, that man pulled over in a blue Sierra with Swiss registration
10 plates. He got out of the car. He was sturdily built. And Toro greeted
11 him. He told him, "Good day, brother." And Toro treated him with
12 respect. This is what I can tell you.
13 When that man left, then Toro said, "This is Zuca. He is from
14 Zemun. He is a military special. He either is or will be the new chief
15 of defence of the town, and he is a good fighter."
16 This second Zuca -- the first Zuca and the second Zuca I saw only
17 once. The descriptions that I provided about this first Zuca with whom
18 Toro exchanged greetings, I believe that he had a butterfly tattoo on his
19 neck. As far as I could see and as far as I could describe, the persons
20 that I saw at the moment, I did it to the best of my recollection and
21 knowledge. I tried to provide the best possible description of that
23 I'm sure that I saw this Zuca in the centre of Zvornik. He
24 pulled the car over next to the kindergarten. In the centre of Zvornik
25 there is a street between the Namaca building and kindergarten. He
1 pulled the car over there. And we were loading furniture in Zvornik.
2 And the second Zuca that I was talking about is the person that I
3 saw when -- in Zamlac. This is a part of Zvornik where we were loading
4 furniture onto the lorries. He came and he was just watching us. Zoks
5 was with us at the time. He told them that we were good, that everything
6 was okay with us. And then this person told us that this Zuca is a crazy
7 man, he is a lunatic.
8 I don't know whether he said he is crazy or he is just a little
9 crazy. I don't remember that. But this is my only recollection about
10 that meetings with these two people. People who interviewed me insisted
11 on me trying to describe these people to the best of my recollection.
12 Q. Do you know that towards the end of July 1992, the authorities of
13 Republika Srpska arrested paramilitary formations from the territory of
14 Zvornik; that a lot of people were arrested on that occasion and that the
15 group included Zuca's group as well? Are you aware of that?
16 A. No.
17 Q. You're not?
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Can we now have on the ELMO --
19 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] Sorry, I have a problem. Before
20 we move on to another statement or something of that kind, I would like
21 to get back to the previous statement made by Vukovic, aka Cele, because
22 I need to look at the last page and put a question to the witness. The
23 reliability and probative value of this is important. I need to
24 understand what the source of this document is because I find there's
25 some confusion here.
1 On the last page, on page 9 I believe, if I'm not mistaken, there
2 is an official stamp together with a signature. I would like to
3 reconstruct this. Is the witness able to read this? And then we can
4 have the translation of what we have on our screen.
5 Can you tell us what this stamp means? What is inside the stamp?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The number is 5007. I think that
7 then it goes on to say 2000, the number is not very legible. Then it
8 says Miroslav Vukovic signed in his own hand this document or confirmed
9 that the signature on this page -- I think, I can't really read it as
10 his, the identity is confirmed on the basis of ID card number 195376.
11 And the identity is -- has been confirmed on the basis of personal ID
12 cards number then it's -- there's nothing there. The appropriate tax has
13 been paid and then it says here, the second instance, court in Belgrade.
14 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] The 26th of March, 2008.
15 So this is a certified signature of the person who has made the
16 statement. We don't know who was present when this statement was made.
17 Is that how you understand things and is that in line with what's being
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The way I see it, this means that
20 he gave a statement and the credibility of his statement is guaranteed by
21 his personal ID card.
22 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] Please listen. Let's get back
23 to the truthfulness of this.
24 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note, Judge Lattanzi said March
1 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] I understand that we are
2 discussing the truthfulness or the validity of the ID card and not of the
3 statement, have I understood this correctly or not?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I think, well, I'm not a lawyer but
5 the way I see it as much as I can understand these things, this means
6 that his identity was confirmed on the basis of his ID card and that this
7 is his signature and that he stands behind all that he wrote there.
8 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] Yes, good. That's what I
9 understood. Thank you.
10 MR. MARCUSSEN: If I may make a comment, Your Honours. I just
11 like to reiterate the observation that I made before that at this stage,
12 this document cannot be introduced into evidence and in my respectful
13 submission, there cannot be an issue of the veracity of the contents of
14 this declaration. It's something that has -- certain facts have been put
15 by Mr. Seselj to the witness. It's being proposed that the witness is
16 wrong based on another description of -- by this person. The statement
17 cannot be admitted into evidence at this stage. Either the witness have
18 to come or the statement would have to go in under 92 bis or 92 ter if
19 those requirements can be made at this stage -- at a later stage, sorry.
20 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] Mr. Marcussen, Mr. Seselj has
21 not asked this to be tendered into evidence. Nonetheless, in order to
22 have a source of reference, because we did, in the end, read out the
23 statement, it's on the record, and that's why it is important to
24 understand where this comes from. It's not only a question of tendering
25 it into evidence or not of admitting it or not, it has to do with the way
1 in which we will weigh this because it's on the transcript.
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] If I may be allowed to say
3 something here. The competent judicial organ does not confirm the
4 veracity of the statement but the authenticity of the signature and
5 that's the only thing that matters to us. As to the contents of the
6 statement, we will be discussing this throughout this trial and I am
7 opposed to the Prosecution tendering the -- any statement into evidence
8 just like that, I am opposed to the Defence doing the same thing. The
9 trial must be public but this statement confirmed as authentic by a
10 judicial organ is slightly better than what the Prosecution has offered
11 at times, but I'm not asking for it to be admitted into evidence.
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Please proceed.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Now, could you please put the front
14 page of the book "Milan Panic Must Fall." I marked three passages in
15 this book. This is the book that I provided to the Prosecution in late
16 2007 in the batch of 80 books. It contains all my press conferences from
17 1992 and the one that is -- I'm drawing your attention to is from the 6th
18 of August, 1992. It begins at page 150 and goes on to 152. I'll read
19 just the parts that were marked.
20 "At this press conference when the news came in that the
21 authorities of the Republic of Serbia arrested some volunteers in the
22 municipality of Zemun, I say the following: The Serbian Radical Party
23 welcomes the action of the authorities of the Serbian Republic of Bosnia
24 and Herzegovina to disarm various, as we call them, paramilitary
25 formations which are nothing but bands of thugs that were terrorising the
1 peaceful civilian population regardless of their ethnicity and religion.
2 Breaking up various smuggling channels, war profiteering and so on, we
3 believed that it was high time for such a move to be made and that those
4 gangs of thugs should be disarmed, brought to justice, and be held
5 responsible for all those things that they did in the several months in
6 the territory of the Serbian Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina which
7 inflicted a great deal of political, economic and moral damage, primarily
8 to the Serbian people.
9 "Incidentally, those gangs of thugs did not make any contribution
10 to the war effort in any serious combat. They did not take part in any
11 serious combat. All they did was based on looting and terrorising of
12 civilians. The Serbian Radical Party had nothing to do with them. Some
13 of them were our volunteers in northern Slavonia, it should actually read
14 eastern Slavonia, so there is a mistake here, and we forced them out of
15 our ranks because of their looting, thefts, and inappropriate behaviour
16 and lack of discipline. But most of them have had no contacts, nothing
17 to do with us at all.
18 "We believe that in the territory of the Serbian Republic of
19 Bosnia-Herzegovina, there can exist only one military organisation and
20 that is the army of the Serbian Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina and
21 nothing else."
22 Sir, Witness VS-1013, is this a clear example of distancing from
23 those paramilitary gangs from the area of Zvornik in your opinion? What
24 is your opinion? Had you heard this on TV, what would you have said at
25 the time?
1 A. Well, let me give you my opinion on what you've just read. I
2 think first of all, that it is too late, because if it's August 1992, as
3 you said, at that time, Zvornik and most of the towns along the River
4 Drina had already been ethnically cleansed. I know that for a fact for
5 Zvornik, I don't know exactly for other places. I welcome any action,
6 any initiative aimed at preventing violence against other human beings.
7 Q. Do you know that this was the 6th of August, 1992, before the
8 Tribunal in The Hague was established. As far as I can remember, the
9 ICTY was established in 1993, so this is not an expression of fear or an
10 attempt to shift the blame. It is simply a political response to an
11 event, and I think that you will agree that the Serbian Radical Party at
12 that time was not the ruling party and it could not, on its own, do as it
13 pleased in those matters through its authorities.
14 A. Well, I don't know much about politics. As far as I know, you
15 were not in power at the time, that is true, and as far as the text is
16 concerned, if this was the view of the Serbian Radical Party, then I can
17 say that this is perfectly all right.
18 Q. Now let me go to page 155, if you would be so kind as to show it
19 on the ELMO.
20 When asked by a journalist I give a lengthy response. It's about
21 the events in Pijelje [phoen] so let me just read the part that pertains
22 to Bosnia-Herzegovina.
23 "In Bosnia-Herzegovina, we don't have any military organisations
24 of our own, no formations, but there are our members who are fighting
25 there in the ranks of the Serbian army. After all, we have a
1 highly-developed Serbian Radical Party in the Serbian Chetnik movement in
2 Bosnia-Herzegovina and all our members there are at the forefront of the
3 struggle for the freedom of their people and the salvation of their
4 territories and according to all testimonials, they are amongst the most
5 conscientious, most disciplined and the bravest.
6 "The issue of discipline in the ranks and their compliance with
7 the commands of the Serbian army is never in question. If anyone does
8 anything in -- on our behalf that is subject to sanctions, we always do
9 all we can to bring this person to justice, to have them criminally
10 prosecuted for what they did and no orders were ever given by the Serbian
11 Radical Party for such acts. So all those war profiteers, smugglers and
12 looters are a normal occurrence in every war.
13 "Throughout our involvement in the struggle of the Serbian people
14 of Serbian Krajina, we have always fought about that. You have seen
15 yesterday at the press conference some guy by the name of Vukan Drepin
16 [phoen], who was threatening with liquidation and he had some execution
17 list, he was forced out of the ranks of the Serbian Chetnik Movement in
18 September 1990. He appeared as a volunteer in Slavonia in Borovo Selo,
19 he spent a couple of days, he stole four grenades and fled.
20 "Later on, he joined Arkan, somewhere around Tenja and then he
21 stole nine uniforms and I don't know how many weapons and when he was
22 found out, he fled again.
23 "So we are talking about people like that. And now they are
24 making those execution lists and let me just add, those execution lists
25 were made in Belgrade, some organisation named the Black Hand was set up
1 and my name was on this execution list. So now they are making those
2 execution lists but the problem is that they are simply registered as
3 parties, some kind of royalist blocks, and they can simply convene the
4 press conference. Journalists cannot verify what is behind what they are
5 saying and what isn't. The public treats them as a serious political
6 party and that is why we need to reregister so that we know what is a
7 party and what is not, lest all kinds of psychos and criminals could hog
8 the limelight in the manner that is properly used by political parties
9 and not to criminal gangs.
10 Some man by the name of Zuca was in Zvornik. He had the biggest
11 gang, criminal gang there. He was our volunteer up until the last fall
12 in Slavonia, and he was forced out because of lack of discipline, because
13 of looting. But he managed to go to Zvornik with his gang and he caused
14 mayhem there and this is why they had to do that.
15 Did you in Bosnia-Herzegovina have a situation where the
16 multi-party system was brought back, where at first, there was a huge
17 number of political parties that were registered because the criteria
18 were low?
19 A. Yes, I heard that.
20 Q. For instance, in Serbia, it was enough for somebody to gather 100
21 signatures and to register a political party. I think it was something
22 similar in your country?
23 A. Well, I never tried to set up a political party but I believe
24 this is why it was what it was.
25 Q. Do you know that that's why I urge for the more stringent
1 criteria for the registration of parties.
2 And now I have a question of the journalist. Don't you think
3 that at this time, you will be the only one to try and punish the
4 criminals? This journalist had in mind our previous efforts to stamp out
5 war profiteering, smuggling and crime.
6 At page 156, I give the following answer: "I consider that the
7 Serbs should arrest somebody if they pilfer during the war and if
8 somebody killed civilians and if somebody abused civilians. We Serbs
9 always had an army of knights that --"
10 JUDGE LATTANZI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, I'm sorry. Perhaps
11 the Judges disagree with me, but I don't think this is right. You are
12 testifying. You are reading out entire pages. That is my personal point
13 of view and you are making fun of us.
14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] First of all, these aren't pages
15 and pages, they are just three excerpts.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, rather than reading
17 out pages and pages, and smart people would say that you are advertising
18 your book, it might have been better to put the question to the witness
19 in such a way, "In a book I wrote, I criticised the criminals and asked
20 the paramilitaries to be dismantled. Have you heard of anything of that
21 sort?" The witness then can answer, "I have heard about it. I haven't
22 heard it. I don't know anything about your book." Then you move on to
23 something else.
24 Because, in fact, this technique is designed to make us
25 understand that you took a public stance against the paramilitaries,
1 against those people who were acting under various political labels
2 whereas these were mere criminals. This is understandable. You can call
3 your own witnesses and you can adduce your own evidence, but in this
4 case, we have a witness who is not a Serb, he certainly hasn't read your
5 book, and he can't help you much with his answers. So this is what we
6 are telling you and we are telling you this in your own interests. It's
7 not to prevent you from defending yourself. This is in our own interest.
8 All this time we have spent on this could have been cut down to a few
9 sentences and you could have put your questions.
10 I'll give you the floor back.
11 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] First, this book is an authentic
12 document dating back to 1992. It's a document for which I consider that
13 the -- I'm sure the Prosecution doesn't mean to challenge it. Secondly,
14 from this entire book I'm just reading out three paragraphs, and I
15 started reading the third one a moment ago, and it is on that basis that
16 I wanted to ask the witness a number of questions and round off my
18 Now, this seems to bother you. I think that the book is
19 sufficient proof and compulsive evidence. Now, the witness hasn't read
20 the book and you haven't read the book and it seems that the Prosecution
21 hasn't read the book either so these three paragraphs must have been read
22 and if you read the whole book you'll come across many similar examples
23 whereas as it so happens this relates to the arrest of paramilitary gangs
24 in Zvornik and you weren't even ready to wait for me to ask my question.
25 May I be allowed to continue and then ask my questions.
1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Just put your question.
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I have to read the third paragraph
3 before I do that because without it there is no question. I can't ask my
4 question. Just three minutes of your patience. I don't think that's too
5 long. I do expect those three minutes of patience on your part.
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You have 15 minutes left.
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Very well.
8 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
9 Q. I consider that the Serbs should arrest someone if they pilfer
10 during the war, if somebody killed civilians, if somebody abused
11 civilians. We Serbs always had a chivalrous army which fought the enemy
12 as you would fight an enemy on a battlefield but it never used to test
13 its bravery over women, children or civilians of any nationality. And I
14 consider that the government of the Serbian Republic of
15 Bosnia-Herzegovina did well for starting to instill law and order on its
16 territory and these gangs of thugs tried to take over power in Zvornik
17 after all. That happened too and nobody could deal with them.
18 Sometimes, you find yourself in a situation very easily as in a
19 situation like that. It hasn't happened yet but it might happen that
20 these gangs of thugs, some will violate a truce if a truce is established
21 and stage a conflict.
22 If you cannot keep a military formation under control on your own
23 territory, then quite simply, you've lost. You've lost the battle.
24 Discipline must be respected and the authority of power must be respected
25 as well.
1 You know, if Serbian authority has been established, then all the
2 formations must listen to that Serb authority and be accountable to it,
3 to carry out its instructions. If somebody fails to do that then he
4 represents an impediment, an obstacle to that Serb authority. And
5 especially in cases where they didn't loot Muslims and Croats but
6 principally the Serbs who happened to be on their territory, in order to
7 loot Croats and Muslims, they would have to cross over to their territory
8 in principle, they're all great cowards and they're not inclined to do
9 that, and then they take what they find closest to hand. That's where
10 they act and they carried over some property over here.
11 Now, Mr. VS-1013, are you familiar with a situation like that,
12 that in Zvornik, there was looting of Muslim property first and when
13 there was no more Muslim property to loot, they started looting Serb
14 property? I think you said something about that too yourself?
15 A. Yes, I am aware of that situation and I said that during
16 yesterday's testimony, what happened was people would light up Serb house
17 on a house, they would knock on the door, Toro did that, and when nobody
18 came to open the door, then he would say, "Break in." He would tell us
19 to break in. We would storm the house and he would pick some items that
20 he took a fancy to and we had to load them up on to the truck.
21 Q. Do you know that in the spring of 1992, large groups of Serb
22 refugees from Tuzla appeared, Zivinice and even from Kladanj as well,
23 Srebrenik and other places in Central Bosnia?
24 A. Well, I am aware of that because while we were loading up goods
25 all over Zvornik, people would come in frequently and select houses and
1 then they tried to send us away and say that that was going to be their
2 property from now on because they had taken it over.
3 Q. But they had left their property behind, what they had in Tuzla,
4 Kladanj and other places; isn't that right?
5 A. Probably.
6 Q. And they now sought refuge and they looked for abandoned Muslim
7 houses to move into and they wanted to have the furniture remain this in
8 those houses whereas these gangs of thugs did not allow that but seized
9 furniture and anything else, any other goods they found in them?
10 A. Yes, I agree with you there.
11 Q. So they didn't demonstrate elementary humaneness. If people were
12 left without a roof over their heads and left behind all their property,
13 they come to Zvornik and see property abandoned by the Muslims and they
14 didn't even have the possibility of moving into these abandoned houses
15 because these gangs of thugs, first of all, wanted to loot the
17 A. I'd just like to put you right because most of the Muslims were
18 expelled and what remained, all of them were gathered together in front
19 of the department store and they were sent to Subotica, women and
20 children, and they were forbidden to take any property with them except
21 what they could fit into small bags.
22 Q. Well, we'll have a possibility of testing and seeing whether the
23 Muslims were expelled, how they came to leave, whether there was pressure
24 or not. I don't say that they didn't leave. I do agree that there was
25 pressure to make them leave but no official persecution but they were
1 mistreated which made them reach a decision to leave, like your arrest,
2 like the fact that people were beaten, looted property and so on?
3 A. As far as I was able to learn from what people told me and from
4 what I saw, the people who stayed on in Zvornik the longest, remained
5 behind the longest sometime in mid-July were collected together in front
6 of the department store, they told me that, I didn't see that with my own
7 eyes so I can't say that this is 100 per cent correct, I'm just telling
8 you what I heard so don't take me to task there. They told me they had
9 been gathered together in front of the department store, made to get on
10 to buses, and then they were driven off.
11 Q. Some of them said they said they wanted to be taken to Serbia and
12 then from then on to foreign countries?
13 A. I don't want to deny that. Maybe some people did request that.
14 I know that the group who told me about it, I don't know how many of them
15 there were in the group, they said they had been rallied up in front of
16 the department store, boarded into buses and then driven off. Now,
17 whether they bequested their property to the Serb municipalities, I'm not
18 challenging what you're saying but that's what this last group of people
19 told me.
20 THE INTERPRETER: Could the speakers kindly slow down and make
21 pauses between question and answer, thank you.
22 JUDGE HARHOFF: Mr. Seselj, slow down, please, and make a pause
23 between question and answer and the same goes for the witness. Thank you
24 very much. Please proceed.
25 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
1 Q. Since I have only a few minutes left, I am trying to squeeze in
2 at least two more questions and obtain answers for these questions, but
3 I'll slow down.
4 Were there cases, according to your knowledge, that Serbs who had
5 already left Tuzla, Kalesija, Zivinice, Kladanj and other places, not to
6 mention all of them, that had already been harmed, harassed or beaten,
7 that there had been killings there as well and so on and so forth, were
8 there cases that these Serbs behaved revengefully towards the Muslim
9 population that they found in Zvornik when they arrived there?
10 A. According to my information and according to what I learned from
11 other people, I did not see these things. I wasn't there but I only
12 heard about them, there were cases of people having lost somebody, but
13 this was on a much lesser scale than the crimes that were committed by
14 what you yourself called gangs of thugs.
15 Q. But they were the cases that I described as well, weren't there?
16 A. Yes, but not to such a large scale.
17 Q. The gangs were the biggest problem for everybody in Zvornik but
18 they were the biggest problem for Muslims, would I be right in saying
20 A. If I may take up a bit more of your time, I would like to say
21 that we are all responsible for the situation that we are in charge of.
22 Those people who had taken over the power were responsible for peace and
23 order. There is no war without victims. We are all aware of that. But
24 there is one more thing here. If I tried to do something to the best of
25 my abilities and then I do nothing but harm to all of those around me,
1 then I am responsible. That's what power and authorities are for.
2 You knew most of these people as you say from Croatia and they
3 had done the same thing so it's impossible that these things could not
4 have been prevented and it is impossible that these people who brought
5 these people in were not aware of whom they were bringing in. I am not
6 saying that you could be responsible for all of them, and that you could
7 control all of them but I am comparing this to a state. A state is
8 responsible for peace and order in the state and along the same lines,
9 the municipal power in Zvornik was supposed to keep peace and order in
10 Zvornik which they didn't do. They did not honour what they were
11 supposed to do. The gangs had been invited and did whatever they wanted
12 to do.
13 Q. Yes, the situation was chaotic. I stated that in other places,
14 the Prosecutor showed it on some video clips but I won't go through that
15 at the moment. I'm going to show you another typical example of a group
16 retaliation, you mentioned the killing of (redacted) didn't you?
17 A. Yes, I did.
18 Q. He was killed when you were detained or -- before your eyes
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. And did you also hear a story about him having been killed by
22 some locals because he had been an Ustasha. In 1945, he came with his
23 Ustasha unit to the property in Trsic village and on that occasion,
24 Vojo Camic and Nikola Zekic were killed. After the war, this
25 (redacted) was not brought to justice. According to my information,
1 some people recognised him, people from Zvornik and the environs, they
2 remembered the event from the Second World War and that's why he was
3 killed. First he was beaten and died of his wounds. Did you hear
4 anything about that? Anything to that effect?
5 A. No, I never heard this before. I hear this from you the first
6 time. He was accused of having been an Ustasha, that his ear was
7 tattooed or branded, I don't know whether he was branded or tattooed.
8 Actually, that this was under his left armpit. They wanted to take his
9 clothes off to see whether that was true but he wouldn't let them do
11 As far as I could see he was taken out and Zoks was the one who
12 had beaten him the most. Although I was preoccupied with my own
13 troubles, I would say that it seems to me that he even kicked him in the
14 corner of the room and then took him out.
15 What happened outside, we heard screams and shouts, but we don't
16 know what happened.
17 In addition to that group that comprised Cele, Pufta, as well as
18 Zoks, there was another group, Niski came. I could not see outside, I
19 don't know what was happening outside. We only heard kicks and thuds and
20 then he crawled into the room and I only know that he said, "I am dying
21 here, children. Pray for me."
22 Q. Are you aware of the -- of this village Trsic around Zvornik?
23 A. No, I was not there. I know that it exists.
24 Q. You don't know about the Popovic property where Vojo Camic and
25 Nikola Zekic were killed?
1 A. I don't know.
2 Q. Then I won't insist on that. This is the information that I
3 received from Zvornik.
4 A. I can't confirm that information because I never heard this
6 Q. I'm not insisting. I appreciate that you maybe don't know
7 anything about that. I understand --
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Registrar, tell me the
9 time. I think you just about have used up your time, Mr. Seselj.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] If I may put just one more question
11 while this is being checked. I think I have another minute or two.
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Well, ask your last question.
13 You've used up three hours.
14 MR. SESELJ: [Interpretation]
15 Q. When you were arrested and taken to prison, and you spent more
16 than a few months there, you were arrested by a Muslim who belonged to a
17 Serb military formation; isn't that correct?
18 A. He belonged to the reserve police forces.
19 Q. Together with the Serbs?
20 A. Yes, together with them, they kept guard.
21 Q. And he was a Muslim?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. I just wanted you to confirm this because obviously there were
24 Muslims in the Serb formations as well. Thank you.
25 A. Can I just provide a comment to this? At the time before the
1 conflict broke out in Zvornik, there were joint guards preventing gangs
2 from storming into town. There was still no conflicts happening and I
3 suppose that was the reason why they were joint guards.
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Do you have a redirect?
5 MR. MARCUSSEN: No, I don't.
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, I just have one short
7 question for you.
8 Questioned by the Court:
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] As to the looting, indeed in
10 the indictment, there is a mention made of looting including in Zvornik.
11 I listened to you carefully. You explained that you would go into Muslim
12 houses and into Serb houses and I also seem to understand you gave an
13 example that there was a factory out of which all of the equipment had
14 been removed and had been loaded on to a truck. Did I misunderstand you?
15 A. It was a crafts shop in Hrid near to the main road. That person
16 was a tinsmith, and I believe that he had patented making grills or
17 barbecues for something that was considered a national specialty in the
18 former Yugoslavia, cevapcici and hamburgers. We loaded all those grills
19 with -- and we put some roof tiles over those grills and even some
20 machinery. I believe that we loaded those on Ljubisa's truck. He was
21 from Loznicka Polje. I'm not sure that it was his truck but I believe
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] And just a follow-up question.
24 When all this equipment would be loaded on to the trucks, were there JNA
25 military in the streets or were there only, say, Arkan's men or other
1 people there? Because I was listening carefully to what you say about
2 the takeover the Zvornik, you mentioned tanks. So one could infer from
3 that that there was a military operation going on. Once the town was
4 taken, did the JNA people go? What can you say about this?
5 A. We did see the troops in town but in small numbers. But a
6 majority of the mobilised soldiers were either on the lines or in the
7 barracks and one could see those formations in town and from the moment
8 we started loading things in town at the beginning of June or the end of
9 May when Toro, Zoks, and the others had taken over, they were the only
10 ones who went with us. The troops would come by or the police would come
11 by to take control. They had a paper that they would open. The police
12 would then read the paper and then they would move on. I suppose they
13 had the authority to do all that and we did see the regular police around
14 town but not on every corner. But I wouldn't say that there was a unit
15 billeted in town or deployed in town. We didn't see them. There was the
16 police and these military formations which are not regular army.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You are therefore telling me
18 that there was a regular army in town but they were not many people or
19 that the army people were not numerous. But did you see soldiers
20 around -- or military police around in town, you can identify them
21 because they've got this white belt showing that they are military police
22 members. Did you see any MPs around?
23 A. We saw all of them on the street but not in large numbers. It
24 didn't look like a unit had been brought town. There were patrols,
25 military, the police patrols and there are always people around the old
1 bridge in Zvornik, you could see a lot of people wearing uniforms there.
2 But those were very colourful uniforms, some wore camouflage uniforms,
3 some had olive drab uniforms, some had insignia, the others didn't. So
4 it was very difficult to tell who they were. There were all sorts of
5 troops around the town but not in large numbers. You could not see large
6 groups standing in one place. The most you could see were some five to
7 ten standing around the bridge, that was the most that we could see.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] One very last question. When
9 you would load things on to the trucks, and we know that you had a
10 damaged arm so you couldn't load up everything, could you not have
11 escaped? Because everybody was busy putting things, equipment into the
12 trucks or counting the bank notes, wasn't it possible for you to flee?
13 A. I was scared, first of all. Second of all, luckily enough, I had
14 grown up in town, I was not familiar with the ground around the town. I
15 did try to escape towards Tuzla which fell through and I hoped that if I
16 did my job properly, that my life would be saved. That was my hope.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Well, you have now finished
18 your testimony. On behalf of my colleagues and myself, we thank you for
19 coming to testify. We know that you suffered. You described the blows
20 you took and rest assured that you have everybody's sympathy including
21 the sympathy of the accused who also expressed his own views regarding
22 your ordeal. So all we can do is encourage you to continue in your
23 current occupation and wish you a safe return home. Before you leave the
24 courtroom, we'll have to lower the blinds. We still have a few minutes
25 so we can do that and you'll have time to leave the courtroom.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] May I say something, sir?
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, do.
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I hope that you as a Trial Chamber,
4 together with all the people in the world will make sure that nobody, not
5 even my worst enemy ever experiences what I went through during the war.
6 Thank you very much.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, sir. Please leave
8 the courtroom.
9 [The witness withdrew]
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Let's move into closed session.
11 Closed session, Mr. Registrar.
12 [Private session]
11 Pages 5384-5386 redacted. Private session.
22 [Open session]
23 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honours, we're back in open session.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Well, in open session, the
25 hearing stands adjourned. We shall reconvene tomorrow at 8.30. Thank
2 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at
3 1.20 p.m. to be reconvened on Thursday, the 27th of
4 March, 2008 at 8.30 a.m.