Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 43085

1 Wednesday, 24 August 2005

2 [Open session]

3 [The accused entered court]

4 [The witness entered court]

5 --- Upon commencing at 9.02 a.m.

6 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, please continue with your

7 examination-in-chief.


9 [Witness answered through interpreter]

10 Examined by Mr. Milosevic: [Continued]

11 Q. [Interpretation] Good morning, Mr. Seselj. Yesterday, we started

12 a question concerning the testimony of Shukri Buja, who mentioned the

13 Black Hand and other politicians in Serbia. So I will read out to you

14 what he says. I have before me page 6421 of the transcript from his

15 testimony, where he was asked about the arrest of some citizens in Racak.

16 He said: "We did not arrest any civilians. We detained for a very brief

17 period. We took the risk of intervention of Serbian paramilitaries of the

18 kind of the Black Hand [In English] in the midst of the civilians in order

19 to cause incident that could have huge repercussions and result in another

20 massacre." [Interpretation] I won't go on.

21 Reading the question: "All right. These stories about the Black

22 Hand and paramilitary formations are stories we've already heard. They

23 are quite -- [In English] equally inaccurate and -- they are quite

24 picturesque and equally inaccurate and untrue. But since you've mentioned

25 it, you claim that all politicians, and you are referring to Serb

Page 43086

1 politicians, had military units in Kosovo.

2 "You say --" that is quotation from page 9 of his witness

3 statement: "Kostunica posed for a photograph when he toured the Serb

4 troops in Kosovo during the conflict. He wore a bandolier on his chest,

5 wearing an ammunition belt across his chest, holding an automatic weapon.

6 I saw Seselj on television in a military uniform several times visiting

7 his own units."

8 [Interpretation] Then I asked him "[In English] Are you referring

9 to Kosovo yet again?

10 "Yes. Kostunica did pose, and that appeared in the dailies

11 bearing those images. If you want ... we can procure a copy." Et cetera.

12 [Interpretation] Please tell me, he goes on page 6442, again I asked him:

13 [In English] Towards the end of the paragraph, it says: 'All the

14 politicians have military units. They all attacked Kosovo in some way.'

15 That's what it says."

16 [Interpretation] Tell us, what politicians -- he mentions you,

17 Kostunica. So what politicians had their own paramilitary formations in

18 Kosovo?

19 JUDGE ROBINSON: Before you answer, Mr. Seselj, Mr. Milosevic, in

20 future when you have a passage like that which you intend to read, you

21 should summarise it. The essence of the question you are putting to

22 Mr. Seselj is that there has been evidence in this case from Prosecution

23 witnesses that politicians had their own paramilitaries in Kosovo, and you

24 ask him to comment on it, and you make a specific reference to the witness

25 saying that he saw Seselj on television on a number of times visiting his

Page 43087

1 own units, and that could be said in a minute. You don't have to read out

2 all of it. I know it's a practice which has evolved throughout this case

3 and it's employed by the Prosecution as well, but I think we waste too

4 much time. Just put the essence of the question to Mr. Seselj.

5 Mr. Seselj, provide us with the answer now.

6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In Kosovo and Metohija, there were

7 no Serb paramilitary formations. They simply did not exist, either in

8 Kosovo or anywhere in Serbia throughout the duration of the Kosovo crisis

9 culminating in war. The Black Hand was a secret organisation of officers

10 dating from before World War I. Never, even when it existed, was it a

11 paramilitary organisation. It was a group of officers conspiring against

12 a dynasty and a king. They were preparing to assassinate the king and

13 queen and bring a new dynasty to the throne. That was the exclusive role

14 of the Black Hand.

15 In the Austrian media, there were suspicions that the Black Hand

16 was also involved in the assassination of the Austrian heir to the throne,

17 Franz Ferdinand, in Sarajevo. The Black Hand came to an end during World

18 War I. After that, it never existed any more.

19 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you, Mr. Seselj. I think you have provided

20 the answer by saying that there were no Serb paramilitary formations

21 there.

22 Mr. Milosevic.

23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] But I only answered part of the

24 question. I also have to answer the part that refers to Kostunica. He is

25 currently the Prime Minister of Serbia. It's a very important question.

Page 43088

1 I insist on answering unless you prevent me.

2 JUDGE ROBINSON: Let's have a brief response to that.

3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Kostunica, like some other

4 presidents of opposition political parties, visiting the imperiled Serbs

5 in Kosovo and Metohija. At a military checkpoint he borrowed a

6 machine-gun from a policeman and had his picture taken with it. All of

7 Serbia laughs when somebody says Kostunica had a paramilitary unit. That

8 is not in his nature. It's not like him. It's quite impossible. Neither

9 he nor the Serb Radical Party or anyone else had paramilitary units, nor

10 did they review any paramilitary units. These are fabrications, fantastic

11 fabrications, incredible fabrications.

12 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Seselj, what was the date of the incident

13 involving Kostunica?

14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It wasn't an incident. Why would it

15 be an incident? It was just an event.

16 JUDGE BONOMY: When was it? Let's not waste time --

17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] As far as I can recall, this

18 happened in the summer of 1998. As far as I can recall. But who am I to

19 recall Kostunica's CV? This was published in the papers and it was around

20 that time.

21 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

22 Q. Mr. Seselj, so it's quite clear: Kostunica had no paramilitary

23 formations. Is this clearly what you know about it?

24 A. Yes, absolutely.

25 Q. Very well. Witness K6 said there was a group active in Kosovo

Page 43089

1 called Arkan's Tigers, and he went on to say - that's on page 6597, and I

2 won't read, Mr. Robinson - he said that Seselj's men were there as well as

3 the Black Hand. He said Arkan's Tigers, Seselj's men, and the Black Hand.

4 Is this correct?

5 A. I won't repeat what I have already said about any men of mine or

6 any paramilitary units of the Serb Radical Party, which is untrue. But I

7 also have to deny what he said about Arkan. I never spoke well of Arkan

8 in public. We were always in conflict. But I have to tell the truth:

9 After the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Dayton Accord, Arkan

10 disbanded his Serb Volunteer Guard, and it never reappeared anywhere in

11 any incident or event. It simply did not exist any longer. He continued

12 dealing in criminal activities after the war, but the Serb Volunteer Guard

13 no longer existed.

14 Arkan formed a political party. I tried to defeat it in the

15 election campaign, and I was quite successful in that. I defeated him in

16 a televised debate, and his party failed completely in the elections. He

17 thought that he could take advantage of any renown he had won in the war

18 on the political scene, but I did my best to destroy that.

19 This lawyer, Toma Fila, was also a member of his party --

20 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you. That went a little beyond --

21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- who is here in two cases.

22 JUDGE ROBINSON: That went a little beyond what was required for

23 the answer.

24 Mr. Milosevic.

25 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

Page 43090

1 Q. Let's go on to the events in Krajina. How many times were you in

2 the Krajina during 1990 and 1991 before the outbreak of any hostilities?

3 A. More than once. I can't give you the exact number. I remember

4 many of my visits to the Krajina. For example, I attended the meeting in

5 Petrova Gora, the rally that is, and the rally in Srb. Then I was in Knin

6 when the Autonomous Province of Krajina was promulgated. Then I led that

7 great march of Serbs to Plitvice. I cannot tell you the precise number of

8 times I visited, but I can recall my visits. I visited Eastern Slavonia,

9 the eastern part of Krajina, even more often. The first time was on the

10 9th of March, 1991. I didn't go there in 1990. In 1990, I went to the

11 western part of Krajina. But after the 9th of March, 1991, I made several

12 visits to Baranja, Eastern Slavonia, and Western Srem.

13 Q. And when was this big popular rally in Kordun that you just

14 mentioned in Petrova Gora?

15 A. Well, it was officially termed rally of Serbs and Croats, and it

16 took place on the 4th of March, 1990, and the immediate occasion for it

17 was the fact that Franjo Tudjman, the president of the Croatian Democratic

18 Union, I think on the 24th of February, stated that the Independent State

19 of Croatia had been an expression of the historical tendencies of the

20 Croatian people. And I have to say that during World War II this was a

21 quisling formation belonging to Hitler, and the Ustasha perpetrated crimes

22 against the Serbs, Gypsies, and Jews, surpassing in number the crimes

23 perpetrated by Hitler. In response to this statement made by Tudjman, a

24 steering committee - it was not a political party, and it consisted of

25 both Serbs and Croats - organised a rally in Petrova Gora, and they called

Page 43091

1 it a rally of Serbs and Croats, and the main speaker was retired General

2 Dusan Pekic.

3 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you, Mr. Seselj.

4 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

5 Q. So you were one of several tens of thousands of participants.

6 What organisation were you representing there?

7 A. At that time, I was the president of the Serb Freedom Movement,

8 which was the first name given to our party. I was there from the people

9 in the top leadership of Vojin Vuletic, the then vice-president Djordje

10 Nikolic, and Mrs. Radmila Nikolic, his wife, who drove us there.

11 Q. You have just explained the reason why this large rally on -- in

12 Petrova Gora on the 4th of March, 1990, was organised. Can you tell us

13 very briefly how the Serbs in Krajina, and not just in Krajina but all

14 over Croatia, experienced that HDZ rally in the Lisinski Hall in Zagreb,

15 the concert hall, and the words that you have just quoted spoken by the

16 then President Franjo Tudjman of the party?

17 A. Well, the Serbs had very painful memories. They had suffered a

18 genocide in the Independent State of Croatia, in Jasenovac alone,

19 according to official data, about 700.000 Serbs were killed, 60.000

20 Gypsies, and 35.000 Roma, Jews --

21 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction: 60.000 Jews and 35.000

22 Roma.

23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] They encompassed Srem and part of

24 Bosnia-Herzegovina. There were mass graves, mass executions in various

25 sites. The Serb people suffered grievously throughout World War II, and

Page 43092

1 Tudjman reminded the Serb people of that suffering. The Serbs were

2 frightened throughout the Croatian federal unit. They were afraid that

3 their terrible fate from 1941 to 1945 would be repeated.

4 Q. And when was the rally in Lika held which you also attended?

5 A. In late July. I think it was the 25th or the 27th of July, 1990.

6 C The immediate cause for the calling of that rally was the opening of a

7 public debate on the amendments to the constitution of Croatia. Tudjman

8 by then had already come to power because his party had won in the

9 parliamentary elections in late April and early May. There were two

10 rounds and they won 41 per cent of the votes, but according to the

11 majority election system, they had two-thirds of the seats in the Croatian

12 parliament. They immediately proceeded to amend the Croatian

13 constitution, and they deleted from the text of the constitution the

14 definition that the Serbs were also a constituent nation in Croatia.

15 According to the then Yugoslav legal constitutional theory, the status of

16 a constituent nation meant that in one could alter --

17 JUDGE ROBINSON: The question really was when was the rally that

18 you also attended. You tend to be a little prolix. You answered it.

19 Just concentrate on answering the specific question. Don't elaborate

20 unless Mr. Milosevic or the Chamber asks you to.

21 Yes, Mr. Milosevic.

22 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation] Just now you said that the

23 immediate occasion was the beginning of the procedure of adopting

24 amendments to the constitution of Croatia, and you indicated the most

25 important element, that is to say the deletion of the Serbs as a

Page 43093

1 constituent people from the constitution of Croatia. In all the post-war

2 constitutions, was the Serb people defined as a constituent people or,

3 rather, Croatia as the state of the Croatian people, the Serb people, and

4 the other peoples living in it?

5 A. That was the precondition for the existence of the Croatian

6 federal unit within the then Yugoslavia. It was only in that variant that

7 the Croatian federal unit could exist and include all those territories;

8 that is to say that it included equal constituent peoples - Croats, Serbs,

9 and other nationalities, as they were called at the time.

10 Q. Tell us, at that time was there similar anxiety with regard to the

11 symbols that the new Croatian -- the new Croatian authorities adopted on

12 the 25th of July, 1990?

13 A. The president of the HDZ, Franjo Tudjman, even while fighting for

14 power, was intensively renewing Ustasha symbols, and when the Croatian

15 state was proclaimed, the Ustasha chessboard was proclaimed the coat of

16 arms of the Republic of Croatia and the flag of the Republic of Croatia.

17 Then also Franjo Tudjman started returning the most extreme right wing

18 members of the Croatian immigration. They started becoming ministers.

19 This was a signal to the Serbs what was in the offing. There was nothing

20 good they could expect with the Ustashas coming back to power.

21 THE INTERPRETER: Could the speaker please be asked to slow down.

22 The pace is very fast.

23 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic and Mr. Seselj, just look at the

24 transcript. You will see the interpreter asking you to slow down, both of

25 you.

Page 43094












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Page 43095

1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson, I do not have any

2 transcript. I'm not following the transcript because I don't know the

3 English language. Actually, I do know the English language as much as I

4 need it, but I don't know as much as you'd like me to know.

5 JUDGE ROBINSON: Never mind. I brought it to your attention. The

6 interpreters are asking you to slow down.

7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes. I shall bear that in mind, and

8 I assume that Mr. Seselj will too, that the pace of speech should be

9 slower because of the interpreters.

10 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

11 Q. I'm going to read some paragraphs out to you, 94 and 95, that is,

12 of this so-called Croatian indictment.

13 MR. NICE: [Previous translation continues] ... policy of not

14 allowing the phrase "so-called indictment." I know it's a small point but

15 it's a matter of respect for the Court. It's an indictment and it's

16 nothing else.

17 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Milosevic. An inappropriate comment.

18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson, as for the nonsense

19 that --

20 JUDGE ROBINSON: I don't wish to debate it. Just move on with the

21 -- with your questions.

22 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

23 Q. I'm reading paragraph 94 to you: "In April and May 1990, the

24 Republic of Croatia held elections in which the Croatian Democratic Union

25 won a plurality of votes and secured a majority of seats in the Croatian

Page 43096

1 Sabor (parliament). The new Sabor then elected the HDZ candidate Franjo

2 Tudjman president of Croatia."

3 So the elections were held and the Croatian Democratic Union won a

4 plurality of votes and secured a majority of seats in the Croatian

5 parliament. And immediately after that, in paragraph 95, it says: "In

6 advance of the 1990 elections, the nationalistic Serbian Democratic Party

7 was founded in Knin, SDS, advocating the autonomy and later secession of

8 predominantly Serb areas from Croatia."

9 Mr. Seselj, what is your knowledge, aware of the situation in the

10 Krajina? Can you confirm this distinction that is made between the HDZ

11 and the SDS? It says: "In advance of the 1990 elections, the

12 nationalistic Serbian Democratic Party was founded in Knin..." What about

13 the HDZ? Was it founded before the elections? Which party was founded

14 first, the HDZ or the SDS?

15 A. In Croatia already in 1989, opposition political parties were

16 established at the time when official laws had not allowed that yet. They

17 were all Croatian parties. Ujdi Branko Horvat, the Croatian Democratic

18 Union of Franjo Tudjman, the Liberal Party -- I don't know its exact name

19 but there was a liberal qualification in its name. It belonged to Slavko

20 Goldstein, and so on. Serbs did not establish their own political parties

21 at all until the 14th of February, if I remember correctly, which is when

22 the Croatian parliament voted on a law on a multi-party system, that is to

23 say the free establishment of political parties. Three days after that --

24 I may be making an error in terms of the date but I don't really think

25 that matters, it's the essence that matters. So only when this

Page 43097

1 possibility was provided by law, the Serbian Democratic Party was

2 established. All parties that were established before that in Croatia

3 were more or less nationalistic except for some small, very insignificant

4 ones that failed soon. It was the Croatian Democratic Union that was the

5 leading party.

6 When I say "nationalistic," I don't believe that there is a

7 negative connotation involved per se. Nationalism is not a negative

8 phenomenon. Chauvinism is a negative phenomenon; hatred for other people

9 and other nations. This party proved to be a chauvinist party.

10 The SDS was established as a reaction to the Croatian Democratic

11 Union, and it only tried to protect Serb national interests. The first

12 president of the Serb Democratic Party was Dr. Jovan Raskovic. He very

13 clearly presented the programme orientation of the SDS in three words,

14 practically. If Yugoslavia continues to exist as a federal state, the

15 Serb Democratic Party is in favour of the life of Serbs in Croatia as was

16 the case before. They do not ask for any kind of autonomy within Croatia.

17 However, if Yugoslavia turns into a confederation, the SDS calls for

18 territorial Serb autonomy within Croatia in the territory where there is a

19 majority Serb population. However, if Croatia secedes from Yugoslavia,

20 then --

21 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. I'm stopping you now because you answered

22 the question as to when the party was founded.

23 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

24 Q. Yes. But before that, I put another question quoting these two

25 paragraphs.

Page 43098

1 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson, I asked what

2 Mr. Seselj's knowledge was in relation to these qualifications regarding

3 these two parties and what it was that they were advocating, these two

4 political parties.

5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Obviously this formulation --

6 JUDGE ROBINSON: [Previous translation continues]... Mr. Seselj.

7 Then, Mr. Milosevic, it was your fault. Don't put three questions to him.

8 Put one at a time. The three questions will inevitably induce an overly

9 long answer.

10 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

11 Q. Was a single one of the objectives put forth by Dr. Jovan

12 Raskovic, the president and founder of the SDS and that he presented when

13 the party was established, could any one of them be called chauvinistic,

14 anti-Croat, or in any way hostile towards Croats in Croatia?

15 A. Absolutely not. First of all, the wife of Dr. Jovan Raskovic was

16 a Croat. His daughter was married to a Croat. Secondly, Dr. Jovan

17 Raskovic at all rallies that he spoke at - I was present at some and I

18 followed others through the media - insisted that the Serb Democratic

19 Party and the Serb people are not against the Croats, not against the

20 Croatian people, not against Croatia, that Serbs were only against

21 Ustashas. And he kept repeating that time and again practically

22 everywhere where he spoke, and I assume that the public still remembers

23 that. Only against Ustashas. Ustashas are Croatian fascists.

24 Q. He said that he was against Ustashas, not against Croats and not

25 against Croatia and the Croat people is something that he repeated so many

Page 43099

1 times and something that people could hear so many times on television

2 that it truly cannot be denied by anyone.

3 It is obvious here -- and you explained just now how the HDZ was

4 established, how the Serb Democratic Party was established. Do you

5 remember who the majority of the Serbs voted for in these first

6 multi-party elections in April, May 1990?

7 A. In their naivete, most Serbs believed that Tudjman would not win

8 the elections, that the policy of brotherhood and unity of the Serbs and

9 Croats would win, a policy that had been promoted for half a century

10 officially and that had been considerably espoused by the people

11 themselves. Most Serbs opted for the former League of Communists or,

12 rather, the Party for Democratic Change of Ivica Racan. A significant

13 number of Serbs also voted for the Socialist Party of Croatia that was

14 founded by Boro Mikulic.

15 After these elections, the Serb Democratic Party won only five

16 seats in the Croatian Sabor. Perhaps there were another 15 or so Serbs in

17 other political parties, but there were some in Racan's party and perhaps

18 in others too.

19 So the Serbs did not believe that Tudjman would win. They thought

20 that a democratic option would win, a nationally tolerant option. That's

21 what mattered the most for them. Therefore, they opted for various

22 political parties that they expected to promote political tolerance in the

23 political life of Croatia after the elections. When Tudjman won the

24 election and after the Ustasha order was re-established in Croatia, then

25 the Serbs started rallying around the SDS.

Page 43100

1 Q. As for the vote of most Serbs in these first elections in Croatia,

2 that is to say the SKHSDP, the membership and the leadership, were they

3 made up in such a way that they were undoubtedly ethnic Croats?

4 A. Yes. A vast majority were ethnic Croats but there were Serbs too.

5 The vice-president of the Sabor was from that party, a Serb. I cannot

6 remember his exact name, but this is reliable information. He resigned

7 after the Sabor became so anti-Serb. But if I remember correctly, after

8 the first elections, a Serb was the vice-president of the Sabor, and he

9 resigned soon after that.

10 Q. Can it be said that actually at these first multi-party elections

11 in Croatia most Serbs did not vote on ethnic grounds at all?

12 A. No.

13 Q. But basically on the basis of the political options of the parties

14 they voted for.

15 A. That is true. Most Serbs then did not vote for that party which

16 is called a nationalistic party here. However, the HDZ is not a called

17 nationalistic party, which shows the partiality of whoever wrote this.

18 Q. That is also a fact that need not be proven further.

19 MR. NICE: There's a lot of commentary and effective leading in

20 these questions. It's now for the Court where it wants to discipline the

21 accused, but if you look at the last three questions, re: "Can it be said

22 that..." That's leading in tendency or nature. "Basically on the basis

23 of the political options of the parties they voted for," and so on. We're

24 not getting responsive questions and answer, but of course, it's very

25 difficult at this volume actually to work out what's being said in time to

Page 43101

1 raise the objections.

2 JUDGE ROBINSON: These are points at issue, points in dispute,

3 Mr. Nice?

4 MR. NICE: I can't say whether they're in dispute or not at the

5 moment. I'm not going to deal with --

6 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.

7 MR. NICE: I can't say whether they're in dispute or not and I

8 doubt if I'm going to deal with them in detail.

9 JUDGE ROBINSON: Because generally I tend to overlook leading

10 questions where they are not matters of controversy for the Prosecution.

11 MR. NICE: As Your Honour pleases.

12 JUDGE ROBINSON: But, Mr. Milosevic, we have been through this

13 several times. When you begin a question, "Isn't it true that...", "Isn't

14 it clear that ..." it will almost inevitably be a leading question, which

15 is not permissible.

16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] All right, Mr. Robinson.

17 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

18 Q. Mr. Seselj, a very neutral question: This kind of vote by most

19 Serbs from the Socialist Republic of Croatia, what did it say about their

20 attitude towards the Croats, Croatia, and the SFRY?

21 A. This shows that Serbs were loyal citizens of Croatia as a federal

22 unit in Yugoslavia. It shows that the Serbs wanted a civic state after

23 the communist regime was toppled in the first multi-party elections and

24 that they expected this state of citizens. The outcome of the vote can

25 show how truly disappointed the Serbs were once this democracy and

Page 43102

1 multi-party system was renewed.

2 Q. Tell me, how many times were you in Knin and when in 1990?

3 A. As far as I can remember, I was there twice. Once the end of

4 August, beginning of September, 1990, and the second time sometime in

5 December 1990. I cannot give you the exact dates, but I believe that I

6 was in Knin at least twice.

7 Q. Tell me who it was that you saw and that you spoke to there on

8 those two occasions in 1990 when you were there.

9 A. Well, I met a large number of Serb political activists. First of

10 all, I had meetings with Milan Babic, first the president of the

11 municipality of Knin, and then president of the Autonomous Region of

12 Krajina. Then Milan Martic, who was first chief of police in Knin and,

13 after that, was minister of the interior of the Autonomous Region of

14 Krajina.

15 Q. And what was the content of these talks that you had with them?

16 A. Well, we talked about general matters related to the destiny of

17 the Serb people. They told me about details, harassment, torture of

18 Serbs, arrests, bring into custody several times. The Croat police broke

19 into police stations in Serb areas, stole weapons, et cetera. Serbs felt

20 jeopardised. They organised night patrols, night guards. They put up

21 barricades or, rather, log barriers, as they were called, in order to

22 prevent 1941 from happening all over again when the Ustashas broke in and

23 killed everyone and everything that was Serb.

24 Milan Babic, at the end of August or beginning of September, asked

25 me if it was possible for the SDS to rally together volunteers, because

Page 43103

1 people were exhausted after being on duty on the barricades day and night.

2 I promised that and I did that in Belgrade. I did that in the central

3 street of Belgrade, Knez Mihaila Street, and your police apprehended me

4 and I was sentenced to 15 days in prison.

5 Q. Tell me, do you have any knowledge about the proclamation of the

6 SAO Krajina from the point of view of paragraph 97 that I'm going to read

7 out to you now, where it says: "On the 21st of December, 1990, Croatian

8 Serbs in Knin announced the creation of a 'Serbian Autonomous District'

9 and declared their independence from Croatia."

10 A. As far as I remember, independence of the Serb Autonomous District

11 was not proclaimed then because the very name Serb Autonomous District

12 means that it is a district within Croatia. Later, when the Republic of

13 Serbian Krajina was proclaimed, that meant definitive separation from the

14 Croatian federal unit, but indeed in December 1990, that was proclaimed,

15 the district was proclaimed, and the first president was Milan Babic.

16 Q. This new Croatian constitution that was called the Christmas

17 constitution because it was adopted on the 22nd of December, what was new

18 in that constitution in terms of defining Serbs as a constituent people

19 or, rather, denying them that definition? What was their new status? Can

20 you give us an explanation?

21 A. The proclamation of the Serb Autonomous District of Krajina was

22 the answer of the Serb people in Croatia to the proclamation of the new

23 constitution which was already definitely decided. Nothing could be

24 changed to the text any more. So this constitution denied the Serb people

25 its rights as the constituent people, and the answer of the Serbs was to

Page 43104












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Page 43105

1 proclaim the autonomous district. In other words, they proclaimed their

2 territorial autonomy as a response to the negation of their constituent

3 status.

4 According to the constitution, the Croatian parliament did not

5 have the right to abolish the Serb status as a constituent right, as a

6 constituent people, just by outvoting. They did not have that right.

7 Q. Just another fact: This paragraph 97 says that Croatian Serbs

8 announced the creation of a Serbian Autonomous District and declared their

9 independence then. Is it true that on the 22nd of December, 1991, Serbs

10 declared independence from Croatia?

11 A. I cannot quote from that enactment that was proclaimed at the

12 time, but since they proclaimed an autonomous district, it was not

13 independence. It was about territorial autonomy. But Serbs in Croatia

14 had always been a constituent people. So the Serbs made it clear they

15 would not stay as part of Croatia unless their status as constituent

16 people was restored.

17 Q. But is it clear that when they declared autonomy they did not

18 proclaim independence?

19 A. I believe that is clear.

20 Q. When you went to Krajina, did you have opportunity to see those

21 logs, those roadblocks on access roads to Serb settlements?

22 A. Yes. I saw the logs, I saw the roadblocks, I saw the people who

23 manned those roadblocks; some of them were armed, others were not. The

24 weapons they had were mostly obsolete, old, from the depots of the

25 Territorial Defence, such as M-48 rifle that had been withdrawn from the

Page 43106

1 army supplies a long time ago, the Thompson rifle that had been withdrawn

2 as obsolete a long time ago again. But everywhere I went I found that

3 Serbs were very anxious and very afraid of what was coming.

4 All the Serbs in the territory of Krajina were very frightened by

5 the intentions of the new Croatian regime led by Franjo Tudjman.

6 Q. While you toured the area, while you met with people, what did

7 they say to you as to the reason why they put up those roadblocks?

8 A. Well, already many incidents had happened. Many Serbs were

9 harassed, maltreated, arrested, tortured. There were graffiti written

10 everywhere. For instance, on one Serb Orthodox Church the letter U, for

11 Ustasha, was written. Serbs were told on many occasions that they would

12 have to leave. If they don't leave on their own, their bodies with their

13 throats slit will slow flow along the river all the way to Belgrade. And

14 their life had become insufferable already in many ways.

15 Q. What you said, that their bodies would flow down the river to

16 Belgrade, was that their imagination or was that a memory of something

17 real?

18 A. It was a memory of World War II when Ustashas killed a lot of

19 Serbs and threw their bodies into the Sava river, even pinning notes to

20 the bodies saying that that was meat designated for the Bajloni green

21 market in Belgrade.

22 Q. This great number of roadblocks that you saw with your own eyes,

23 or roadblocks made of logs around houses and around population centres,

24 could that have been considered an offensive instrument or a defensive

25 instrument?

Page 43107

1 A. Well, a roadblock is obviously a means of defence. People who put

2 up roadblocks are obviously expecting an attack and preparing for that

3 attack. It's certainly not an offensive instrument.

4 Q. Why did you come to Krajina in early May 1991?

5 A. It was actually in April 1991. I came at the invitation of Milan

6 Babic who had organised a large march of the Serbs from Korenica to

7 Plitvice.

8 Q. What was the reason, what was the purpose of that march?

9 A. Plitvice is a majority Serb place and the police had control of

10 the police station there. A month prior to that Serb -- sorry, Croatian

11 special police attacked that police station. An incident was created

12 involving bloodshed. The Yugoslav People's Army came to deal with this

13 incident and calm things down, but the Serbs realised that the army was

14 siding with the Croats. Instead of restoring things to their previous

15 condition, they justified the Croats, in a way, and what they had done.

16 So this march was a protest against the latest Croat moves but also a

17 protest against the Yugoslav People's Army that was helping the Tudjman

18 regime against Serb interests.

19 Q. Was it a peaceful march?

20 A. Yes, it was a march of unarmed people, a peaceful one, including

21 dozens of thousands of people.

22 Q. Who was there?

23 A. I was there, Ljubica Solaja, who was then heading the Serbian

24 Democratic Party, Milan Babic. And we came across seven military

25 roadblocks. The army stopped us seven times with their combat vehicles,

Page 43108

1 with heavy machine-guns. You could see the bandoliers full of real

2 ammunition, live ammunition.

3 Milan Babic was at the head of the convoy. He balked in fear, so

4 I took over from him, leading the march, and we found a way to go around

5 those roadblocks. Sometimes we just went through, and sometimes we went

6 around. Eventually, we arrived at Plitvice and surrounded the

7 headquarters of General Raseta who was there. Then an officer appeared,

8 asking for negotiations. On behalf of the demonstrators, I came to see

9 General Raseta, asking him to let us go through Plitvice peacefully

10 whereas I on my part guaranteed that there would be no incident, no

11 problem, and that's what indeed happened. The demonstrators went through

12 Plitvice. They were singing songs, they were shouting slogans, but there

13 were no incidents.

14 Something happened only when Milan -- and in fact Milan Babic and

15 Milica Solaja [as interpreted] caught up with us later.

16 JUDGE ROBINSON: The question was who was there. I think you have

17 answered that.

18 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

19 Q. You just mentioned that Ljubica Solaja was heading the Serbian

20 Democratic Party.

21 A. Yes. Prior to that there was a conflict between Milan Babic and

22 Jovan Raskovic. There was a rift in the Serbian Democratic Party. I

23 don't know the exact date, however, when the Serb Autonomous District of

24 Krajina was proclaimed, the Serb Democratic Party was set up for that

25 district, and it was headed by Ljubica Solaja.

Page 43109

1 Q. Does that mean that Babic practically replaced Raskovic?

2 A. Yes. There was some sort of clash between them before that, but

3 Babic practically replaced Raskovic. I believe Raskovic stayed on for a

4 while, heading a separate wing that was not widely recognised, but it soon

5 came to nothing anyway.

6 Q. Do you know anything about the relationship? Why was such an

7 attitude taken towards Raskovic, because he was, after all, the founder

8 of the Serbian Democratic Party?

9 A. He was considered to be too soft. Babic was a more hard line, you

10 could even say dogmatic personality, whereas Raskovic, who by occupation

11 was a psychiatrist, often came across as a therapist even among his own

12 people. When I went there, I always tried to calm things down rather than

13 spur them on in this conflict.

14 Q. How long after the proclamation of the constitution of Croatia,

15 the new constitution, did Serb refugees start coming into Serbia?

16 A. In May, June 1990, as soon as the Tudjman regime came into power.

17 And the refugees were even evermore numerous because the new Croatian

18 authorities demanded that Serbs sign oaths of loyalty. And they

19 introduced an institution that did not exist before, called Domovnica,

20 which was a new document that certified one's civic rights; right to

21 employment, right to retirement pension, some sort of certificate. And

22 many Serb citizens were denied this paper although they wanted to have it.

23 Many did not even apply for it because they considered the new

24 authorities to be Ustashas. Many Serbs who worked in public enterprises

25 did not get these certificates. Many Serbs from crisis areas simply left,

Page 43110

1 ran away. They were hard up.

2 JUDGE ROBINSON: [Previous translation continues]... question.

3 You answered the question.

4 Mr. Milosevic.

5 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

6 Q. You were saying something about a small number of Serbs.

7 A. A smaller number of Serbs lived in the Autonomous District of

8 Krajina, Western Slavonia, Baranja, and Eastern Srem. A larger number of

9 Serbs lived in central Croatia, in towns like Zagreb, Rijeka, and others.

10 Maybe there were 300.000 Serbs in Krajinas, but in central Croatia there

11 were 400.000. Plus there were around 300.000 so-called Yugoslavs, people

12 who declared themselves as Yugoslavs during the census. There were many

13 among them who were children of mixed marriages but also people who

14 thought of themselves as Yugoslavs for other reasons.

15 Q. What about those Serbs who lived in central Croatia, throughout

16 Croatia, not in the Krajina areas? Even this Prosecution does not claim

17 that there were any conflicts there.

18 A. Well, there were no conflicts, especially not armed clashes, but

19 they found it hard to survive there and the greatest majority of them left

20 and went abroad. Serbs felt safe only on the territory of those

21 self-proclaimed autonomous districts.

22 Q. Did your party organise some assistance and aid to the refugees,

23 and was there a major drive in Serbia to help the refugees in general?

24 A. Yes, there was. Sometimes -- sometime in 1991, we formed a

25 central headquarters for these activities to help refugees move into

Page 43111

1 vacant apartments, to find them accommodation throughout Serbia in places

2 that were available - with the approval of the owners, of course - and

3 then these headquarters also started to deal with the issue of volunteers.

4 Q. Was that the only purpose of that Crisis Staff?

5 A. The Crisis Staff did only humanitarian work. They found clothing

6 and food for refugees, accommodation such as in hotels. We tried to

7 ensure their trade union rights. You can say a lot of things about the

8 former Yugoslavia but trade union rights were on a pretty high level.

9 There were many hotels and similar facilities available to the working

10 class to spend their holidays, and we tried to use those buildings to

11 accommodate the refugees.

12 Q. Tell us a bit more about what you knew, what you know about the

13 signing of oaths of loyalty to Croatia, a phenomenon of that time. I want

14 to hear this because we often hear claims here that somebody forced these

15 oaths of loyalty on people in Serbia.

16 A. This oath of loyalty is in fact a discriminatory act. It never

17 existed in Serbia. It was something introduced by the new authorities in

18 Croatia. Croats signed these oaths immediately, unquestioningly. Serbs

19 reacted in various ways: Some signed, others refused because they did not

20 want to be loyal to a regime. They did not question their own loyalty to

21 Croatia as a -- as a state, but they did not want to sign an oath of

22 loyalty to the new fascist regime led by Tudjman.

23 Q. Did you know -- in fact, you knew about all the new discriminatory

24 measures that were introduced at the time in Croatia, measures of pressure

25 on Serbs in Croatia. So tell us about it, especially since you had a

Page 43112

1 Crisis Staff to cater to refugees. What did the refugees themselves tell

2 you?

3 A. The testimony of refugees was horrifying. They told us their

4 stories, how they were harassed, how they were maltreated. Many of them

5 were physically abused, beaten. They did not dare say anywhere that they

6 were Serbs. The atmosphere of fear in Croatia was astonishing. Nobody

7 had expected that the pervasive fear from the times of the war, from the

8 times of the Ustasha regime can ever reappear.

9 Q. Did Serb -- Serbs as a group, as associations, did they give any

10 sort of reason for that kind of treatment?

11 A. No. They gave absolutely no cause for such behaviour. They had

12 no organisations of their own, neither political parties nor even cultural

13 associations. Their national cultural organisation was formed only in

14 1990. The Serbs before that had no national ethnic organisation. In

15 Croatia, they accepted the constitutional order of Croatia, but I

16 emphasise, only as a federal state within Yugoslavia. If Croatia remained

17 a federal state within Yugoslavia, they would respect it. This balance

18 served to protect their interests, and they were satisfied with that, so

19 they all took part in the political and social life of Croatia.

20 Q. Just awhile ago, you mentioned the volunteers that Milan Babic

21 asked you to provide. Did he explain to you why he was requesting

22 volunteers, and did you send any?

23 A. He said that the people manning the barricades were already

24 exhausted, that there was a large territory that had to be protected and

25 that they could use the help of volunteers from Serbia. Also, that

Page 43113

1 volunteers from Serbia would raise the morale of these people who would

2 realise that they had not been abandoned. However, as I was arrested on

3 my return to Belgrade because I had organised the registration of

4 volunteers to be sent to Knin, no volunteers were sent throughout 1990.

5 Q. Tell me, when was the first time the Serb Radical Party sent

6 volunteers to Krajina?

7 A. Sometime in April there was a rally in Borovo Selo in Eastern

8 Slavonia. I was invited there by Vukasin Soskocanin who was, I think, the

9 president of the local commune, but in any case he was the commander of

10 the Territorial Defence of Borovo Selo. He invited me to attend a rally,

11 and then we visited the barricades together, those that had been set up on

12 all the roads around the village, also protecting other Serbian villages

13 which were sometimes exclusively Serbian in that area, which were also

14 exposed to various forms of maltreatment and incidents by the police and

15 the so-called National Guard established by Tudjman's regime.

16 We toured some of these barricades, and he asked me that the Serb

17 Radical Party help by sending some volunteers who would contribute to

18 keeping the peace and maintaining security. He said that the work in the

19 fields was under way, the farm work, because it was April.

20 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you. You have answered the question.

21 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

22 Q. Did I understand you well? You went to Borovo Selo at the

23 invitation of the commander of the Territorial Defence of Borovo Selo,

24 Soskocanin?

25 A. Yes.

Page 43114












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Page 43115

1 Q. And then you sent volunteers at his invitation?

2 A. Yes. We sent 15 or 16 volunteers. To tell you the truth, I can't

3 remember whether it was 15 or 16. In addition to our volunteers, there

4 was one from Mirko Jovic's Serb National Renewal Party, one single

5 volunteer.

6 Q. In view of the fact that you were there and in view of what you

7 know about this, can you explain how it came about that there was a

8 conflict in Borovo Selo in early May 1991?

9 A. In late April, there were negotiations between the Serb and

10 Croatian local authorities. It was agreed that the barricades should be

11 removed from the roads, that an atmosphere of trust should be developed.

12 The Croats guaranteed that there would be no attacks or police

13 interventions on their side, no sending off members of the National Guard

14 Corps, and so on. The unanimous decision was that a peaceful solution

15 should be sought. The barricades were then removed.

16 Q. These negotiations, these talks, all this took place --

17 A. Late April.

18 Q. Yes, as you say, in late April, and this all took place at the

19 local level, between the local commune of Borovo Selo -- or, rather,

20 between whom?

21 A. The local Croatian authorities, whether in Osijek or Vukovar, I

22 can't be precise. But the result of this agreement was the removal of all

23 Serb barricades on the roads leading to Serbian villages. The volunteers

24 withdrew, there were a total of 16, to the community centre in the centre

25 of Borovo Selo. There were no longer any barricades. The atmosphere

Page 43116

1 became normal. It was quite relaxed. The volunteers were already

2 considering going back to Belgrade, when all of a sudden on the 2nd of May

3 Croatian policemen and members of the National Guard Corps arrived, as

4 well as mercenaries. They burst into Borovo Selo. They arrived in a bus

5 or two buses, and they immediately started shooting. In front of the

6 community centre they killed Vojislav Milic. He was the only volunteer

7 from the Serb National Renewal, although Mirko Jovic said that they had

8 sent 700 volunteers in their Dusan Silni unit to fight in Borovo Selo, but

9 these were all fabrications. There was only one and he was killed,

10 although he was completely unarmed, as soon as the Croats arrived armed to

11 the teeth.

12 The other Serb volunteers soon opened fire, and they managed to

13 defeat the Croatian attackers. According to our information, there were

14 more than 30 Croatian attackers who were killed, although the Croats

15 admitted to only 15 victims. From this we draw the conclusion that the

16 rest were -- who were not even registered or recorded. They were Kurds,

17 and I know that they had false money, forged money, money dating from the

18 Independent State of Croatia, Hitler's Reich marks, and so on and so

19 forth.

20 After some fighting, the JNA intervened. They stopped the armed

21 conflict. The Croatian attackers withdrew, they took their dead with

22 them, and the situation then calmed down.

23 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. Thank you --

24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] And the Serbs of course put up

25 barricades again.

Page 43117

1 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you. Next question.

2 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

3 Q. After this event, did you continue sending volunteers?

4 A. Not right away. A new consignment of volunteers was sent in the

5 summer. This Serb victory in Borovo Selo resounded among the Serb people

6 and volunteers of the Serb Radical Party, again the great renown. They

7 were highly esteemed. Although not all had fought there. Some had just

8 been in cafes in Borovo Selo and tried to find shelter. But because of

9 those who fought, they became very highly esteemed.

10 In the summer, when there was a conflict between the JNA and

11 Tudjman's paramilitary formations who attacked JNA barracks, killed

12 officers, seized weapons from military depots, and so on and so forth,

13 several high-ranking JNA officers visited the headquarters of the Serb

14 Radical Party, and they discussed with me the further gathering of

15 volunteers and sending them to the JNA which was having great problems

16 mobilising conscripts because the Western powers were waging a campaign

17 against mobilisation under the pretext that this was a communist army.

18 Unfortunately, the JNA, pursuant to orders from Veljko Kadijevic, still

19 wore the five-pointed star on their uniforms and the Serb people found

20 this -- they didn't like it. And then the Serbs of Croatia gathered in

21 Zijeca Street [phoen]. There was some officers among them, and there were

22 representatives of almost all of the opposition political parties. I was

23 representing the Serb Radical Party. The Serb Renewal Movement was

24 represented by Milan Komnenic, if I remember correctly; and then there was

25 the Serb Democratic Party; then there was Gojko Djogo and there was Mirko

Page 43118

1 Jovic for the Serb Renewal Party. And all these parties agreed that the

2 imperiled Serbs in the Croatian federal unit needed assistance and that --

3 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you, Mr. Seselj. The answer is too long.

4 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

5 Q. Mr. Seselj, very often there was mention here of the existence of

6 your units. You are now saying something about sending volunteers. Up to

7 now, you said that you sent volunteers to the Territorial Defence and to

8 the JNA. Did you send volunteers anywhere else, and did you establish

9 your own units?

10 A. No. I never formed any units of my own. At this meeting, an

11 agreement was reached among all the opposition political parties and the

12 JNA officers that volunteers should be organised and sent to the JNA. The

13 JNA set aside a barracks in Bubanj Potok, close to Belgrade, as a

14 collection centre for volunteers.

15 Q. What you have just explained, was it a result of the meeting of

16 this group of JNA officers which attended this meeting and the

17 representatives of the political parties who undertook to send volunteers?

18 A. Yes. That was the direct result of that meeting. The only

19 difference is that the Serb Radical Party was the only one who

20 consistently abided by the decisions reached at that meeting. The other

21 parties did not.

22 Q. Would you explain now, because it's very important in view of the

23 claims made about your units, your paramilitary formations, and so on and

24 so forth, what was the status of your volunteers in the JNA? Can you

25 explain precisely whether they had JNA documents, uniforms, and were they

Page 43119

1 treated in the same way as any other citizen who volunteered to join the

2 JNA?

3 A. The volunteers from the Serb Radical Party were all JNA soldiers.

4 They had military booklets where their time of service was entered. They

5 received military salaries. However small they were, they received

6 salaries from the JNA. If a volunteer was killed, he was buried according

7 to JNA protocol. A local JNA unit would arrive to fire, and the flag was

8 that of the JNA and not of the Serb Radical party. The JNA bore the costs

9 of the funeral. The families of those killed regulated their rights to a

10 pension through the JNA. Volunteers who became war invalids received

11 their rights and benefits through the JNA. Unfortunately, these benefits

12 were very small, but this was all regulated. Not a single case remained

13 unregulated.

14 JUDGE ROBINSON: Was there any difference, then, between the

15 volunteers that you sent and the JNA soldiers?

16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] There was no difference at all.

17 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thanks. Mr. Milosevic.

18 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

19 Q. Mr. Seselj, you have a Ph.D. in law. You're a university

20 professor. You are familiar with the constitution of the SFRY and the

21 laws on national defence. According to this legislation, what was the

22 legal basis for everything you are talking about now? I'm referring to

23 the volunteers and their activity in the JNA.

24 A. We had a very good legal basis, both in the constitution of the

25 SFRY and the law on national defence. The law on national defence

Page 43120

1 provided for the following: A member of the armed forces is any citizen

2 who in an organised manner, bearing weapons in their hands, is fighting

3 the enemy. So no distinction was drawn between external and internal

4 enemies, whether this was an aggression from outside or from within, an

5 attack on the constitutional order, because it was the task of the JNA to

6 defend the constitutional order whether the attack came from outside or

7 from within.

8 Q. You said that your volunteers became members of the JNA, that they

9 had service books in which all the usual facts were entered. These

10 service books and these documents, were they identical to the service

11 books of other members of the JNA or was there any difference?

12 A. The service books were absolutely identical. They were the only

13 kind of service books that existed. All of us who had served our military

14 service had the same service books, and we kept those until the end of our

15 lives. Even when we were no longer conscripts and were liable for

16 military service, either in the regular forces or the territorial forces,

17 we still had our service books.

18 JUDGE ROBINSON: Remember to observe a pause between question and

19 answer. I hear a certain breathlessness in the voice of the interpreter

20 trying to keep pace with both of you.

21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, they will be able to draw

22 breath in about 15 minutes' time.

23 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

24 Q. Mr. Seselj, I wanted to explain the following: We all had service

25 books. Everyone was given a service book when they completed their

Page 43121

1 regular military service, and these are the same service books that your

2 volunteers had.

3 A. Yes. All volunteers from the Serb Radical Party had service books

4 and in their service books their command entered their time of service.

5 Q. Very good. Was there a single element -- as you have explained

6 that as they were volunteers in the JNA, they became regular members of

7 the JNA like everybody else, was there any distinction drawn between any

8 of your volunteers and other members of the JNA?

9 A. No, there was no difference.

10 Q. Were they deployed in the regular JNA units?

11 A. Yes, they were deployed in the regular JNA units according to

12 commands coming from the general staff. Neither I nor anybody else from

13 the Serb Radical Party ever dealt with issues of deployment or deciding

14 where they would be engaged and in what manner. This was all decided in

15 the JNA. Our task was simply to gather the volunteers and send them to

16 the centre in Bubanj Potok.

17 Before sending them off, I often held speeches for them. In these

18 speeches I encouraged them to fight heroically against the enemy. I told

19 them how they were to treat prisoners, civilians, women and children,

20 elderly people, and so on. They received strict instructions which were

21 in accordance with the provisions of international laws of war, that they

22 should fight chivalrously, that they should fight well but treat prisoners

23 and civilians humanely. Television cameras in Belgrade filmed some of

24 these speeches I made to the volunteers, and many journalists attended

25 these send-offs, and they can all testify to this.

Page 43122

1 Q. Mr. Seselj, as you sent volunteers to the JNA, did you at that

2 time have a clear idea, a clear awareness of who was in command in the JNA

3 and whether the political leadership of Serbia at that time had any

4 influence on the JNA?

5 A. I was a political and ideological opponent of those who were in

6 command of the JNA, and as a deputy in the Serbian Assembly, I publicly

7 spoke against Veljko Kadijevic and the JNA. I disagreed with many of

8 their moves. But it was my duty as a citizen to assist the JNA in this

9 situation because our state had no other legal armed force. My political

10 standpoint was one thing - it was highly critical - but it was my duty as

11 a citizen, on the other hand, to contribute to the country's efforts to

12 defend itself. My political views had no significant affect on the JNA.

13 It was only the federal leadership and the Presidency of the FRY that

14 could influence the JNA. Minister Veljko Kadijevic was the main man in

15 the JNA and he was part of the government of Ante Markovic, who was a

16 Croat. This was the last government of the SFRY.

17 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Seselj, not for the first time have I heard

18 you say that you were in disagreement with an institution or an entity.

19 Are you given to disputes by nature?

20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I was in the opposition for many

21 years. I was an anti-communist dissident. It's very hard for me to speak

22 of my natural tendencies. I -- in any case, I always voiced my

23 disagreement publicly and sometimes very vehemently.

24 Secondly, as an anti-communist dissident, I constantly attacked

25 Veljko Kadijevic for not removing the five-pointed star from the regular

Page 43123

1 JNA uniforms. Sometimes we couldn't mobilise people because they refused

2 to wear the five-pointed star.

3 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you. Mr. Milosevic.

4 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

5 Q. A very concrete question concerning those times: The volunteers

6 of the Serb Radical Party in the JNA, were they considered to be

7 disciplined or indisciplined?

8 A. According to all the information that I received from the commands

9 of the JNA that were in charge the officers that I was in contact with,

10 the volunteers of the Serb Radical Party were among the most disciplined

11 and the most courageous ones, and I only heard praise about them. Of

12 course there were certain incidents, there was some trouble, but the JNA

13 reacted then. These volunteers were sent away from their units, and the

14 Serb Radical Party excluded from their own membership all of those who

15 would violate laws and regulations.

16 Q. Do you know who General Zivota Panic was?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. What did General Zivota Panic say about the volunteers of the Serb

19 Radical Party in the Yugoslav People's Army?

20 A. General Zivota Panic was, first of all, commander of the Belgrade

21 army district and then he became chief of general staff. As a matter of

22 fact, I had a major clash with General Panic, and he was removed in 1992.

23 I revealed an affair that had to do with some kind of irregularity that he

24 was involved in, but that doesn't matter now. I have seen part of General

25 Zivota Panic's statement here. That is a document that is accessible to

Page 43124












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Page 43125

1 the public. It was given to me as part of the exculpatory material in the

2 proceedings instituted against me. Zivota Panic states directly that all

3 volunteers of the Serb Radical Party were within the JNA.

4 Q. You explained why you were guided by this in sending volunteers to

5 the JNA. Very briefly. It was my understanding that that was the only

6 regular armed force. Is what you said?

7 A. Yes. That was the only regular armed force. You see, I studied

8 the theory of totalitarian political forms, left wing and right wing

9 ones. I know the nature of militarism. I know that. I've dealt with it

10 as a scholar. I know how dangerous it is to set up party armies. They

11 lead to the fascisation of the country. Also the establishment of

12 paramilitary formations that turn into gangs, dishevelled ones at that.

13 However, under my leadership, the Serb Radical Party never got involved in

14 this kind of thing.

15 I cannot swear that not a single volunteer of the Serb Radical

16 Party did not steal something that could fit into his pockets or into his

17 hands; however, there was no systematic looting in our case, there was no

18 killing of prisoners of war, and there was no maltreatment of the civilian

19 population.

20 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Seselj, how many volunteers were there from the

21 Serb Radical Party?

22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, sort of for propaganda reasons

23 we said that there were about 30.000 of them, but the real figure would

24 have been about 10.000.

25 JUDGE BONOMY: And how were they distributed among the various

Page 43126

1 groupings in the JNA?

2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] They were directly included in JNA

3 units. The largest concentration of volunteers was up to one company,

4 which is about 100 to 120 soldiers. Not in a single unit was there a

5 larger concentration. They were sent to different units, and it was the

6 JNA command who decided where they would be sent. Some volunteers were in

7 Eastern Slavonia. For example, in Vukovar they were with the 1st Guard

8 Brigade. There is an order of the commander of the 1st Guard Brigade

9 concerning their deployment. In Western Slavonia they were within the

10 Territorial Defence that was commanded by Colonel Trbojevic as an

11 active-duty officer of the JNA, but these volunteers were also sent to the

12 western part of Krajina, to the Udbina airfield, and from there they were

13 in the Plitvice theatre of war, and so on.

14 The entire transport of volunteers was organised by the JNA.

15 JUDGE BONOMY: Does that mean in the example you've given there in

16 the 1st Guard Brigade in Vukovar that there would be an identifiable

17 company which was comprised entirely of volunteers from the Serb Radical

18 Party?

19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, you cannot say entirely, but,

20 for example, the commander of the Guard Brigade ordered that the Leva

21 Supoderica Territorial Defence detachment that was subordinated to the 1st

22 Guard Brigade would be the unit where volunteers of the Serb Radical Party

23 would be taken in. That's where the volunteers of the Serb Radical Party

24 constituted a majority, but Captain First Class Milan Lancusin Kameni

25 [phoen] was their commander, who was on the Territorial Defence of Vukovar

Page 43127

1 and who was a local person from Vukovar. Through the war he became a

2 member of the Serb Radical Party. He was not a member of the party when

3 the war broke out but then he liked the Serb Radical Party and he joined

4 it as a member.

5 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.

6 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

7 Q. Can we summarise what is being said about the volunteers of the

8 Serb Radical Party. Are there any exceptions to what you established and

9 stated, that the volunteers of your party were exclusively sent to the JNA

10 then?

11 A. There was not a single exception. They were exclusively sent to

12 the JNA, and as JNA soldiers they took part in armed operations at various

13 fronts.

14 JUDGE ROBINSON: Would there be any -- would there be any

15 documentation within the Serb Radical Party to confirm that?

16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That can be confirmed from the

17 service books of the volunteers but the entire documentation exists in the

18 archives commands of the army of Yugoslavia or, rather, the JNA, and they

19 have records of how many volunteers were sent where and at which theatres

20 of war they were engaged.

21 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Milosevic.

22 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

23 Q. And, Mr. Seselj, your party sent volunteers to the JNA and they

24 accepted that they would be under JNA command. Now, my question to you

25 is: Were there other groups of volunteers that did not want to go to the

Page 43128

1 JNA?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. That were established as some kind of special units, separate

4 units outside the JNA?

5 A. Other opposition political parties that took part in this

6 agreement subsequently cheated out. The Serb renewal of Mirko Jovic

7 established the paramilitary unit of the White Eagles, but soon the White

8 Eagles became independent and got out of Mirko Jovic's control. They

9 started operating independently as a paramilitary organisation with a

10 limited number of members, but some people used them for their own

11 political and often dishonourable purposes.

12 For example, Veljko Dzakula, who was then president of the

13 parliament of Western Slavonia, brought the White Eagles to Western

14 Slavonia. They were engaged in some other places, as far as I know, but

15 my knowledge is not direct. It is based on what certain people said after

16 I contacted them, so I imagine this is not relevant for the Court.

17 However, if the Court deems it necessary, I can speak about that too.

18 Then the Serb Renewal Movement decided to set up the so-called

19 Serb Guard, and the media were full of what they were saying, that they

20 were sending 60.000 people. And that was a lie; there was only 1.000 of

21 them. Then they recruited the worst criminals from the streets of

22 Belgrade for that. Djordje Bozovic Giska, a notorious criminal, was

23 appointed commander, and he did dirty work for the federal security

24 service in the 1980s when he killed various political emigres in Western

25 Europe. His deputy was another dangerous criminal, Branislav Matic Beli.

Page 43129

1 The commander of the so-called Komite Detachment was Miodrag Brkic,

2 nicknamed Lale Robija, was another notorious criminal who was appointed.

3 And he raped a male convict when he was in prison so then he got another

4 six-year term of imprisonment. So they recruited the scum of the earth

5 from the streets of Belgrade.

6 All right, I will try to slow down.

7 Then they insisted that this guard of theirs be turned into the

8 Serb army or the army of the Republic of Serbia.

9 Then the Democratic Party, they promised that they would send

10 volunteers, but that did not happen. You see, the structure of their

11 membership was, well, sort of like this Boris Tadic nowadays. These are

12 effeminate guys. They are not right for military service and they are not

13 right for leaders. But later on, when Zoran Djindjic became head of that

14 party, he had much closer ties to Radovan Karadzic than I did, for

15 instance, or anybody else from Serbia. However, since he could not

16 organise his own volunteers from Serbia, then he was joined by a commander

17 of a paramilitary organisation from Republika Srpska who --

18 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Seselj. It's time for the adjournment,

19 but in any event, I found that answer too long.

20 It may be a question of culture and jurisdictional practice, but

21 these long answers I find very, very difficult to follow, Mr. Milosevic.

22 When you ask a question and the witness has reached a certain point, then

23 you stop him and put another question. The narrative approach is not very

24 helpful.

25 We will adjourn for 20 minutes.

Page 43130

1 --- Recess taken at 10.33 a.m.

2 --- On resuming at 10.57 a.m.

3 JUDGE ROBINSON: Please continue, Mr. Milosevic.

4 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

5 Q. Mr. Seselj, just before the break, you explained in general terms

6 some questions related to paramilitary formations. Now I'm going to put a

7 few specific questions to you, because you mentioned a few types of

8 paramilitary organisations. You started with the Serb Guard of the Serb

9 Renewal Movement. Could you please explain the position of the Serb

10 Renewal Movement at the time when the Serb Guard was established and the

11 reasons why the Serb Guard was established.

12 A. Well, at one time we were a single political party, and then in

13 June 1990, approximately, Draskovic and I parted ways. Draskovic belonged

14 to the most reactionary part of the Serb political spectrum. His party is

15 a nationalistic party. The Serb Radical Party is a nationalistic party

16 too, but his party is a monarchist party, a royalist party, then one that

17 let the church interfere in political life. That is what I consider to be

18 reactionary when I say that.

19 The Serb Renewal Movement had nationalist membership as well, and

20 it was not hard for them in 1991 to use nationalistic and patriotic

21 slogans to get some people into the Serb Guard, as it was called. In

22 addition to these criminals who were the commanders, there were honourable

23 people as well in this Serb Guard, people who were sincerely prepared to

24 fight for the freedom of the Serb people and who did not have criminal

25 motives. However, the leadership was deeply criminal.

Page 43131

1 This Serb Guard was actually established first and foremost for

2 expected armed clashes in Serbia. However, since I as an MP in the

3 Assembly of Serbia attacked them as a group of criminals, as a band that

4 has nothing to do with justice and the fight of the Serb people for

5 freedom, then in the summer of 1991 they were seeking ways and means of

6 being engaged at a particular front line. The Serb Guard, with a couple

7 of hundred of its members, tried to cross over to Eastern Slavonia so that

8 they would be engaged in the Slavonian theatre of war, I guess.

9 The police of Serbia, at the bridge on the Danube near Dalj

10 stopped them from crossing over. It was impossible for them to cross over

11 into Eastern Slavonia. Then they went to the western part of the Serb

12 Krajina, to Lika, and they were engaged at the front near Gospic. The

13 commander of the Serb Guard was this prominent criminal Djordje Bozovic

14 Giska, his then deputy at the theatre of war another major criminal, a

15 very dangerous one, Branislav Lajnovic Dugi, from Novi Sad. Giska got

16 killed there under very suspicious circumstances. Allegedly Djordje

17 Bozovic Giska and Branislav Lajnovic Dugi took a combat vehicle to

18 reconnoiter. Hardly ever would a commander and deputy commander go out to

19 reconnoiter. Then they stopped at a place where they were supposed to

20 carry out this reconnaissance. The combat vehicle returned and they

21 started picking plums. A sniper bullet hit Djordje Bozovic Giska during

22 this plum picking, as far as I know, underneath his arm in the chest at a

23 spot that was not protected by his flak jacket.

24 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Seselj, it appears to me that we are

25 digressing a little.

Page 43132

1 Ask another question, Mr. Milosevic. I'm going to have to control

2 the question and answer much more intimately than I would have liked.

3 When you ask a question, I'm going to look at it and I will make a

4 determination as to whether the answer should be a short one or fairly

5 long.

6 JUDGE KWON: Can I clarify one thing before we move on. Your

7 party was once called Serbian Movement of Renewal. So the Serb Renewal

8 Movement is totally different from that, I assume. How is it different in

9 Serbian? The abbreviation or --

10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I could explain all of that to you.

11 I hope that you expect me to explain this to you in-depth, the core of the

12 matter.

13 JUDGE KWON: Very briefly.

14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the briefest possible: I

15 set one party, Vuk Draskovic set up another party. The party that I set

16 up was called the Serb Freedom Movement and Vuk Draskovic set up the Serb

17 National Renewal. Soon the Serb National Renewal threw out Vuk Draskovic

18 and we united, setting up the Serbian Renewal Movement. Then in June

19 1990, we clashed and he was removed, but he set up another party which had

20 the same party as we did, the Serb Renewal Movement. At one point in time

21 there were two parties with the same name. Then we changed the name of

22 our party into the Serb Chetnik Movement. The Serb Chetnik Movement

23 united with the National Radical Party into the Serb Radical Party whereas

24 Draskovic kept the original name.

25 Could I have given you a briefer explanation, Mr. Kwon?

Page 43133

1 JUDGE KWON: It has been clarified.

2 JUDGE ROBINSON: You did very well there, Mr. Seselj.

3 Congratulations.

4 Now, Mr. Milosevic, your next question.

5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I join in the congratulations,

6 Mr. Robinson.

7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Another moment and I'll blush due to

8 all these congratulations.

9 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

10 Q. Mr. Seselj, the point of this explanation, as far as I'm

11 concerned, is the explanation of these paramilitary formations. The Serb

12 Renewal Movement of Vuk Draskovic established the Serb Guard.

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. Who is Vuk Draskovic?

15 A. Vuk Draskovic was a dissident of a nationalist orientation from

16 the previous communist period. I already said how he set up his political

17 party and how his own party threw him out. Vuk Draskovic is a prominent

18 opposition leader, has been one for years, and from time to time he was in

19 power. He was in a coalition with your party too and at that time he was

20 vice-premier. Now he is in coalition with the other pro-Western parties

21 so he is minister of foreign affairs of Serbia and Montenegro.

22 Q. What was the Serb Guard established?

23 A. In the summer of 1990.

24 Q. What was the purpose of establishing the Serb Guard?

25 A. The purpose was to prepare for internal armed clashes and

Page 43134












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Page 43135

1 settlements of account in Serbia that Draskovic was wishing for, but in

2 his speeches he said it was the preparation for the defence of the Serbian

3 people.

4 Q. Was this a paramilitary formation, this group that Draskovic set

5 up?

6 A. Yes. By all its attributes it was a paramilitary organisation,

7 and --

8 Q. How did the authorities view them?

9 A. Well, the authorities were against them, but they never actually

10 sanctioned them. There were never enough charges to send Draskovic to

11 prison, but Draskovic never -- was never held responsible for that in any

12 way because the authorities took a mild attitude towards him, and

13 Draskovic became a greater danger since he linked up with the Western

14 representatives in Belgrade.

15 JUDGE ROBINSON: What are the features of a paramilitary

16 organisation?

17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] All organisations of military type

18 that do not belong to the state structures, to the legal army, are

19 paramilitary organisations. In political theory, a paramilitary

20 organisation can be called a militia. That is an organisation that is

21 established spontaneously and has an armed character. That is, every unit

22 that is not part of the regular army and not under the control of the

23 regular army is a paramilitary unit.

24 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you, yes. That's clear.

25 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

Page 43136

1 Q. Let us move on with brief and precise questions. Who were, for

2 the most part, members of the Serb Guard of Vuk Draskovic?

3 A. The most dangerous criminals from the underground. I enumerated

4 some of them; drug dealers, murderers, extortionists, looters, robbers, et

5 cetera. In the end of the 1980s and early 1990s, a large number of

6 criminals found themselves back in Belgrade because they found it hard to

7 survive in Western countries. Visas were introduced for our citizens, and

8 whereas Yugoslavia exported -- the former communist Yugoslavia exported

9 criminals, they started to return to Yugoslavia under the new regime. The

10 criminal I mentioned, Lale Robija, had come back from Australia.

11 Q. You said the purpose of establishing that Serb Guard was defined

12 by internal political needs having to do with the violent clash with the

13 authorities in Serbia.

14 A. Starting from the 9th of March, 1990, Vuk Draskovic never

15 completely rejected the option of a violent coup d'etat, and he spoke

16 about it all the time.

17 Q. Do you know of any instance of use of the Serb Guard for political

18 purposes?

19 A. Well, it was used for political purposes mainly in Belgrade

20 throughout the summer of 1991. They had some sort of inspection of the

21 Serb Guard in Cacak or around Cacak where a clash occurred between the

22 commander and the deputy commander, Giska and Beli. Beli was killed

23 immediately after that clash, whereas Djordje Bozovic Giska went to the

24 theatre of war in Lika after that.

25 Q. You explained that they went to Lika after the police of Serbia

Page 43137

1 prevented them from crossing over into Eastern Slavonia.

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. Where did they go exactly? You said they were around Gospic.

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. First they intended to go to Eastern Slavonia to be engaged, but

6 they were not able to.

7 A. They were not able to because the police prevented them. The

8 police had the task to prevent the crossing of any paramilitary units into

9 Eastern Slavonia because they had already had experience with them and

10 knew them mainly as looting and pillaging units. I cannot say that all of

11 them were like that, because some of them really participated in fighting.

12 Some were wounded, some got killed. But their entire leadership consisted

13 of criminals, that much is true.

14 Q. What happened with that Serb Guard in the years that followed?

15 A. After Giska was killed, Zvonko Smajlic became commander of that

16 guard. He was wounded near Gospic in the chest. When I went to Knin

17 sometime in November 1991, I found him in the Knin hospital. After he was

18 wounded, the Serb Guard was taken over by a prominent criminal from Novi

19 Sad, Branislav Lajnovic Dugi, and he accompanied the Serb guardsmen to

20 some front lines, but they were shunned for the most part because they

21 mostly looted and pillaged and did not fight. They had been in Foca and

22 Trebinje. In Trebinje, they had taken over a hotel, but they were

23 expelled because they were mostly engaged in looting. They were also near

24 Konjic. There they were commanded by a certain man called Boro Antelj, of

25 whom I don't know much, but their task was to smuggle arms from the front

Page 43138

1 line to Serbia and to equip Draskovic's units for a possible clash in

2 Serbia. All I know is that they received arms from Boro Antelj,

3 Draskovic's Serb Guard received arms from Boro Antelj.

4 Q. You explained a moment ago that Vuk Draskovic and the Serb Guard

5 paid lip-service to the defence of the Serb people but they actually were

6 more interested in looting and robbing.

7 A. Under the influence of the American ambassador, Vuk Draskovic soon

8 turned coat completely. You have evidence of that in his speeches and

9 public statements that were very inflammatory at the time, but after the

10 war he became a peacemaker. So he always turns where the wind blows.

11 Q. You have some documents here in tabs 6, 7, and 8 where you can --

12 we can see more about this approach of his. Because it is usually I who

13 am described as an instigator of war in all of these events.

14 Look, for instance, at tab 5. What is it that you provided in

15 tab?

16 A. Well, here are some excerpts from Draskovic's newspaper Serbian

17 Word, "Srpska Rec."

18 Q. Just a moment. When you say "Draskovic's newspaper," you mean the

19 newspaper of the Serbian Renewal Movement?

20 A. This is his private newspaper. It has never been the newspaper of

21 the Serbian Renewal Movement, SPO. It was his newspaper and that of his

22 wife. But they promoted the policy of the SPO.

23 Q. In any case, this is an authentic piece of writing by Vuk

24 Draskovic dated the 7th of December, 1990.

25 A. Yes.

Page 43139

1 Q. Could you read from this appeal.

2 A. Draskovic addresses the Serbian Academy of Science, Serbian

3 Writers' Association, Matica Srpska, and the Centre of Emigrants of

4 Serbia, calling upon them "to meet urgently and adopt a joint declaration

5 to protect the nation." He says --

6 THE INTERPRETER: Will the speaker read slowly, please.

7 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Seselj, read slowly. The interpreters are

8 asking you to read more slowly.

9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I will. I will read more slowly.

10 "In Croatia, an Ustasha government has been re-established; armed

11 formations of Serb-killers are being founded. The Ustasha Supreme

12 Leadership has concluded an anti-Serb pact with the Arnauts --" he means

13 Albanians, but this is used as a derogatory term -- "and Muslim

14 fundamentalists, the de-Serbianized but militant and loud minority in

15 Montenegro, and the Serbophobic staffs around Macedonia, who are openly

16 asking for our territories.

17 "The Serbian people are faced with a united hatred, as they were

18 in 1914 and 1941.

19 "We must oppose the menacing Evil as soon as possible,

20 immediately. We must not allow ourselves, for the third time in this

21 century, to be overtaken by events. It is our duty to subordinate to the

22 defence of the nation, if we still have a historical conscience and

23 ambitions to endure as a people, all our inter-Serbian, ideological,

24 party, class and other disagreements and misunderstandings.

25 "The Serbian Renewal Movement (SPO) proposes that the leaders,

Page 43140

1 that is, the representatives of the leading Serbian political parties, as

2 well as representatives of the Serbian Orthodox Church, the Serbian

3 Academy of Sciences, the Serbian Writers' Association, the Matica Srpska

4 and the Centre of Emigrants of Serbia meet urgently to draw up a joint

5 Declaration to protect the nation.

6 "That document, in our opinion, should be the starting point for

7 the adoption of a Serbian National Programme."

8 Q. I think this is enough by way of quotation.

9 A. This is from Srpska Rec of the 7th of September, 1990.

10 Q. So he talks here about the fact that Serbs are threatened by

11 genocide with the newly established Croatian authorities and formations of

12 Serb killers. He speaks of Macedonia, Croatia.

13 A. Bosnia.

14 Q. What is the nature of what is called here the facsimile of Vuk

15 Draskovic's appeal of the 7th of December, 1990?

16 A. Well, the reality was not far from his assessment as expressed

17 here, but his position here is expressed in an inflammatory manner, one

18 that instigates to war. That is obviously his approach. He's not making

19 an appeal to negotiate, to try to exert some influence, to achieve any

20 other option but the one of war.

21 Q. And that is the purpose for which this paramilitary organisation,

22 the Serb Guard, is established?

23 A. And his deputies in the parliament advocate from the rostrum that

24 the Serb parliament should proclaim the Serb Guard as the new Serbian

25 army, that his paramilitary formation should be turned into a new Serbian

Page 43141

1 army.

2 Q. Very well. Look now at tab 6. You provided this also from his

3 newspaper. It is authentic. There is just a brief quotation here. What

4 can we read in this brief excerpt that you selected?

5 A. That is the Serbian Word, Srpska Rec, of the 14th of October,

6 1991. It says: "... The Ustasha knife is being held to the throat of the

7 Serbian people in the western Serbian Krajinas and only Serbia can and

8 must help them. More than 200.000 Serbs from the Croatia of the

9 Anti-Fascist Council of National Liberation of Yugoslavia have already

10 abandoned their hearths, and Serbia authorities have the audacity to say

11 that the country is not at war with the Ustashas. Had the Ustashas done

12 nothing other than blowing up our martyr church in Jasenovac as they did

13 several days ago, it would be reason enough to declare war on them, both

14 as a nation and as a state."

15 Now, your policy was that our country was not at war with Croatia,

16 that we were only opposing the pro-fascist regime of Franjo Tudjman,

17 whereas Draskovic insist -- insists that the Serbian nation and the

18 Serbian state should declare war on Croatia. That is very extreme. Even

19 for me as a Serb nationalist, this was too much.

20 Q. All right, Mr. Seselj. What can we see under tab 7? These two

21 can be associated with these activities of the Serb Guard and the

22 political positions of the current foreign minister of Serbia and

23 Montenegro.

24 JUDGE ROBINSON: No translation, Mr. Milosevic.

25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj selected a very brief

Page 43142

1 excerpt to quote. I hope we can put it on the ELMO. It is also from a

2 newspaper, an issue of April 1991, as far as I can see.

3 Place this first page on the ELMO so that Mr. Seselj can quote.

4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Just a couple of sentences.

5 JUDGE ROBINSON: It is translated.

6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Draskovic says here: "The borders

7 of our state and the entire expanse within them are fortified by Serbian

8 culture, language, names of villages and cities, names of rivers and

9 mountains, trees and birds, Serbian epic poems and traditions, monasteries

10 and endowments, our blood and graves. These boundaries are removable.

11 These Krajinas of ours are inalienable. The guns hanging from their

12 shoulders with which they're threatening us had better remain on their

13 shoulders. I do not wish upon anyone, including them, that which will

14 happen if machine-guns speak." And he uses the new Croatian speak for the

15 word "machine-gun."

16 "We are not afraid of those who wish to revive the head of state

17 Ante Pavlovic or those who dream of some kind of Greater Albania. We are

18 not afraid of those who speak our language and have our roots but have a

19 vision of some kind of Dzamahirija or Sulltanat [phoen] on Serbian land."

20 That is what Vuk Draskovic wrote about the boundaries of the

21 Serbian state as he sees them, and he published his idea about those

22 borders on the cover page of his newspaper.

23 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Seselj, can I take it that throughout 1991 and

24 1992 that Draskovic was an opposition politician?

25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, he was an opposition

Page 43143

1 politician. He was an opposition politician until 1998 when he entered

2 the federal government.

3 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

4 Q. Look at tab 8, Mr. Seselj, and present to us the quotation you

5 have selected. This is quite a long article, but the quotation is short.

6 This is dated the 5th of November, 1990.

7 A. Yes. Here Draskovic is addressing the Assembly of his party and

8 says, among other things --

9 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Seselj, just read selected parts of it. We

10 don't want to hear the whole page. We can read --

11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I cannot read it all. That would be

12 too much even for me. Only -- I will read only a short passage from page

13 19. It would be masochistic of me to read the entire speech of Vuk

14 Draskovic.

15 JUDGE ROBINSON: No. What I meant was that what you have selected

16 here takes up an entire page and I don't think we have the time for that.

17 So even that --

18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's not an entire page. It's a

19 quarter of a page, Mr. Robinson. A quarter of a page.

20 JUDGE ROBINSON: It's an entire page in English. Then do your

21 best.

22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know how long it is in

23 English, but if you won't let me read, I won't.

24 JUDGE ROBINSON: No, no, you can read but I don't want -- just

25 select the parts that are important to Mr. Milosevic's case.

Page 43144












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13 English transcripts.













Page 43145

1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the only bit I selected.

2 What is one page for you is a quarter of a page here. His speech is

3 several pages long.


5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] All right, if you insist.

6 "We will no longer love our enemies and sacrifice ourselves for a

7 brotherhood without brothers any more. ... the command, after all, is for

8 Heaven and not for Earth, for saints and not for people. Serbs, finally,

9 no longer have anything to give away or anything to renounce except the

10 right to their existence.

11 "We are for Yugoslavia, but a new, completely different one.

12 "We are for a federation, even at the price of accepting the

13 present internal borders, which are in any case non-historical and

14 criminally demarcated, on condition that the federal state be a

15 multi-party and democratic republic or a monarchy with a strong central

16 authority and on condition that autonomous provinces or regions be

17 established everywhere where their existence is imposed by the same

18 reasons as in present-day Serbia.

19 "This in effect means that the territorial autonomy of the Serbs

20 in Croatia should be guaranteed, and then the autonomy of Istria and

21 Dubrovnik, while Bosnia and Herzegovina would be divided into four

22 autonomous regions: one where the Roman Catholics would predominate, one

23 where the Muslims would be a majority and two where the Orthodox

24 Christians would be prevalent. Applying the same yardstick, Macedonia

25 should also be reorganised internally, so that the Macedonians and the

Page 43146

1 Serbs and the Siptars there are satisfied in national and cultural turns.

2 "We perceive the provinces and regions within the present

3 republican borders in Yugoslavia more or less like the cantons in

4 Switzerland.

5 "In principle, we are not opposed either to a confederation

6 treaty or to the break-up of Yugoslavia. Simply, no one has the right to

7 impose a federation by force on either the Croats or the Slovenes or to

8 prevent these peoples from founding their own sovereign states.

9 "Likewise, no one may deny the Serbian people's historical and

10 ethnic rights or their right to go to war should the common state be made

11 into a confederation or break up.

12 "In that case, the Serbian Renewal Movement will consistently and

13 unrelentingly insist that no one can break away or place in a

14 confederation to the detriment of the Serbs the territories of Yugoslavia

15 that found themselves on the 1st of December 1918 within the then Kingdom

16 of Serbia, or territories in present-day Bosnia-Herzegovina and Croatia

17 where the Serbs were a majority people before the Ustasha genocide was

18 committed against them. This is the order of historical justice and is

19 not for negotiation."

20 What does this quotation illustrate? This quotation illustrates

21 the mood in the entire Serbian opposition at the time. The entire Serbian

22 opposition, including the Serbian Renewal Movement, the Democratic Party,

23 the Serb Radical Party, who all continuously criticised the federal

24 government and the Serbian government for having a very mild attitude

25 toward the Croatian separatists and the other separatists emerging in the

Page 43147

1 federal units.

2 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Milosevic.

3 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

4 Q. More than once there is mention here and also in some counts which

5 I will not quote for you now of some kind of inflammatory speeches

6 inciting war on the part of the regime and me personally in order to

7 incite ethnic hatred, instigate war and so on. Have you ever heard of any

8 such speeches? To be sure, no such claims have been substantiated by

9 evidence, but have you ever heard me make such a speech, or anyone

10 belonging to the Serb or Yugoslav government at the time?

11 A. No, never by you. Never by any of the government bodies in Serbia

12 under the control of your Socialist Party. Never were such statements

13 made by any of you. It was Vuk Draskovic, me, and other opposition

14 leaders who made such speeches, but certainly not any government

15 officials. We were always more radical than the government concerning

16 these issues. Draskovic sometimes really went over the top. Not even I

17 can digest what he said about the monarchy. But we always attacked the

18 authorities because, in our view, the authorities were not doing enough to

19 defend the Serb national interests and to protect the imperiled Serbian

20 people.

21 Q. Is there anything you can add to the description of these facts

22 about the Serb Guard of Vuk Draskovic, their political position and their

23 activity during the conflict on the territory of the former Yugoslavia?

24 A. The Serb Guard turned into a looting organisation. And after the

25 withdrawal of the Serb Guard from Bosnia and Herzegovina, there was a

Page 43148

1 conflict between Draskovic and the commander of the Serbian Guard,

2 Branislav Lajnovic Dugi, but this was a personal conflict. It had nothing

3 to do with their political or ideological orientation. Not long after

4 that, the Serb Guard ceased to exist.

5 Q. Very well. In your general explanation about paramilitary units,

6 you spoke about the attitude of the Democratic Party toward these

7 paramilitary units, and then you went on to speak about the unit and the

8 formation of a man nicknamed Mauzer which was active in

9 Bosnia-Herzegovina. Can you kindly just briefly explain what this was

10 about.

11 A. Well, the Democratic Party did not lag behind the other opposition

12 parties in this kind of orientation. Their public statements may have

13 been a bit milder, however, Zoran Djindjic, when he became the head of the

14 Democratic Party, had very intensive relations with Radovan Karadzic. No

15 one on the Serbian political scene was closer to Radovan Karadzic than

16 Djindjic and Kostunica. As far as I can remember, your Socialist Party

17 had no inter-party relations with the Serb Democratic Party.

18 THE INTERPRETER: Could the speaker please slow down.

19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The Serb Democratic Party did have

20 such relations, but not as close as theirs.

21 JUDGE ROBINSON: I've stopped you. It's very difficult for the

22 interpreter because you're going at much too fast a pace and the

23 interpreters are continually asking you to slow down. I should say --

24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.

25 JUDGE ROBINSON: -- it's not in the interest of Mr. Milosevic's

Page 43149

1 case. It affects the whole efficiency of the Court if we do not have

2 proper interpretation. So continue, bearing that in mind.

3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I will slow down again.

4 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

5 Q. Mr. Seselj, you are testifying here for the first time, so you are

6 not aware of the logistics here. I suggest that after every sentence you

7 wait until it is interpreted and then you can say the next sentence.

8 A. Well, my ideal was always to reach the speed of light when I

9 speak. Well, now I have to try to do the opposite, but I will try, I

10 promise.

11 Q. Well, please answer my question.

12 A. As for the Democratic Party, in 1990, 1991, or even in 1992, it

13 did not lag behind in the general efforts of the opposition political

14 parties in Serbia, but it was not internally capable of gathering

15 volunteers and sending them where they were needed in the war theatre. It

16 wanted to do this but was not able to. As I already said, the structure

17 of their membership was effeminate. It was a bit flaccid.

18 Then Djindjic found Mauzer, the commander of the paramilitary

19 forces the Panthers, and he made him a member of the Democratic Party and

20 appointed him his vice-president and the president of the Democratic Party

21 for Republika Srpska. And that's how Ljubisa Savic Mauzer participated in

22 the first elections after the Dayton Accords. Ljubisa Savic Mauzer headed

23 a band of looters which, in the war, was not very effective. But he

24 gained prominence in persecuting the Muslim civilian population. Together

25 with Arkan, he looted a large Muslim village called Janja which was loyal

Page 43150

1 to Republika Srpska. He entered the village, started looting their

2 vehicles, tractors, money, and so on, and the Serb Radical Party in

3 Bijeljina came into public conflict on more than one occasion with Ljubisa

4 Savic Mauzer -- interrupting me?

5 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. I think you should stop. I think you have

6 provided an answer.

7 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Seselj, the -- you referred to the Serb

8 Democratic Party, and you're telling us about membership and leadership.

9 That's a party distinct from the Serb Democratic Party founded in Croatia,

10 or is it -- are we talking about the same party?

11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You see, there were two Serb

12 Democratic Parties.

13 JUDGE BONOMY: It helps to clarify.

14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] One in Croatia and the other

15 included Serbs in Bosnia and Herzegovina. I mentioned a third called the

16 Democratic Party of Republika Srpska. It was under Djindjic's control.

17 It was not termed a Serb party. When these three parties were formed,

18 they were formed by the same circle of people, former dissidents, more or

19 less moderate in orientation, who were mutually connected: Jovan

20 Draskovic, Radovan Karadzic, and the people around Micunovic in the

21 Democratic Party in Serbia. For many years before the war they were

22 friends. They had personal contacts, and so on and so forth. To begin

23 with they wanted to form a single party but then they agreed they should

24 establish three different parties. The party in Serbia did not have the

25 prefix "Serbian." It was called only the Democratic Party. Their

Page 43151

1 ideology was identical. Sometimes -- somewhat later some differences

2 emerged, later on, and there were internal differences that emerged later

3 on.

4 I think that's clear now.

5 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you very much.

6 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

7 Q. Mr. Seselj, you explained the existence of this paramilitary unit

8 headed by Mauzer and the close relations between the Democratic Party or,

9 rather, the way that this paramilitary unit joined the Democratic Party.

10 In connection with some of the crimes that this group committed - I mean

11 Mauzer's group - the leadership of Republika Srpska headed by Radovan

12 Karadzic has been accused of these crimes. Tell us, did the leadership of

13 Republika Srpska headed by Radovan Karadzic have control over Mauzer's

14 unit and was Mauzer's unit responsible or did it answer in any way to the

15 leadership of Republika Srpska; and if not, to whom was it responsible?

16 A. No.

17 JUDGE ROBINSON: Two questions there. Take the first one first

18 and try to deal with it briefly.

19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. Radovan Karadzic had no control

20 over Mauzer and his paramilitary unit the Panther Guard. When I met him

21 on several occasions, he complained to me of their self-will and their

22 causing problems in Semberija. The Serb Radical Party in Bijeljina also

23 came into conflict with Mauzer. Sometimes he would be abduct peaceful

24 Muslim civilians in Bijeljina and extort money from the Muslim side to

25 send them back. Sometimes Muslim soldiers of the Serb army were

Page 43152

1 maltreated by him and sent over to the Muslim side.

2 I happened to be in Bijeljina when a Muslim was wounded. He was a

3 soldier of the Serb army on leave, and Mauzer's men threw a hand grenade

4 into his yard. He lost a leg. I visited him in Bijeljina hospital. On

5 more than one occasion we publicly condemned Mauzer's behaviour.

6 In military terms, Mauzer was not especially significant, but he

7 was very prominent in perpetrating various crimes. Mauzer, to begin with,

8 was independent and linked to Arkan.

9 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you. And was Mauzer's unit responsible in

10 any way to the leadership of Republika Srpska?

11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] If Radovan Karadzic personally

12 complained about his behaviour, I don't believe he was responsible to

13 them. No serious state leadership can be happy with the existence of an

14 independent and renegade paramilitary formation not answering to anyone.

15 He was on the war theatre, for example, in Bratunac towards Srebrenica,

16 but he was not effective in warfare.

17 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you, Mr. Seselj.

18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] The transcript does not reflect part

19 of what Mr. Seselj said just before you intervened, Mr. Robinson, where he

20 said that Mauzer was independent to begin with and linked to Arkan, and

21 later on he joined the Democratic Party of Zoran Djindjic.

22 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

23 Q. Did you say that, Mr. Seselj?

24 A. Yes, that's what I said.

25 JUDGE ROBINSON: That's now in evidence. Move on.

Page 43153

1 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

2 Q. To whom was he responsible?

3 A. He was responsible to no one in military terms. Later on, he was

4 responsible to Zoran Djindjic. He was his closest collaborator.

5 Q. Was he the president of the Democratic Party for Republika Srpska?

6 A. Yes, and Djindjic's deputy president in the entire Democratic

7 Party. Djindjic participated in his election campaign, held speeches at

8 rallies in Republika Srpska.

9 Q. And how do you view a criminal such as Mauzer being part of a

10 party which is declaring itself to be in favour of Europe, democratic

11 principles, democratic values, and so on?

12 A. No political party should be viewed only from the perspective of

13 what it says about itself or the principles it proclaims. The Democratic

14 Party under Zoran Djindjic is a deeply criminalised party. Zoran Djindjic

15 is one of the Serbian politicians who contacted the Mafia, used the Mafia

16 for his own purposes, and it turned out in the end that the Mafia used him

17 for their purposes and liquidated him when he tried to free himself of

18 them.

19 Q. You mentioned some other units but I think we need not dwell on

20 them. You mentioned the Serbian Guard, the paramilitary units of the

21 Serbian Renewal Movement of Vuk Draskovic.

22 A. There was also Arkan's Serb Volunteer Guard.

23 Q. What was its position? To whom was it responsible?

24 A. Arkan had been a criminal for many years, notorious in Europe. He

25 had been a bank robber. But for many years he worked for the federal

Page 43154












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Page 43155

1 state security service and participated in the physical liquidation of

2 political emigres.

3 In 1986 or 1987, I filed a criminal report against the then

4 federal minister of the interior, Stane Dolanc, among other things

5 accusing him of the murder of Yugoslav political emigres, the murder of

6 Stjepan Djurekovic, and in my speech, public speech to the Authors Society

7 of Serbia, I said that it was Zeljko Raznjatovic Arkan who was the

8 assassin and that after this the minister gave him a gun bearing an

9 inscription saying "To Zeljko from Stane."

10 Q. Just pause there for a second, please. Tell us in a few words,

11 who was Dolanc who at the time was minister of the interior of Yugoslavia;

12 and tell me, when was this?

13 A. Stane Dolanc was for many years one of the strongmen of Tito's

14 communist regime. After Tito's death, he was certainly the politically

15 strongest person in the state. He was the minister of the interior and he

16 was the main chief of all intelligence and counter-intelligence agencies

17 of the then communist Yugoslavia.

18 Q. Give me a more precise answer: When?

19 A. From Tito's death onwards, 1980 onwards, until the end of the

20 1980s. Now, when did his last term of office expire? 1988 or 1989, I

21 cannot remember exactly.

22 Q. You referred to your own speech at the Writers Association where

23 you talk about Dolanc and his liaison with Arkan. Is this contained in

24 tab 10? When you find it, when you find this quotation that you marked

25 yourself on page 851, because that was published in your book on page 851,

Page 43156

1 could you please read it.

2 A. Well, that is tab 10, Mr. Milosevic, at least in my papers.

3 Q. Well, tab 10 is what I said.

4 A. Inter alia, in this speech that I published in my book The

5 Campaign Against Heretics, this is my speech at the international October

6 meet of writers at the Writers Association of Serbia.

7 JUDGE ROBINSON: Is this translated, Mr. Milosevic? It doesn't

8 appear to be translated, in which event, if you have a particularly short

9 passage, it can be placed on the ELMO.

10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It's just seven or eight lines,

11 Mr. Robinson, and I thought of reading that.

12 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

13 Q. By all means read it, but just put it on the ELMO.

14 MR. NICE: There is a translation that's come our way, of about

15 seven or eight lines, and I'm not sure if you've got it or not.

16 JUDGE ROBINSON: No, I don't have it.

17 MR. NICE: Looks like --

18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's as much as I intended to

19 read, anyway. May I start Mr. Robinson?


21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That's my speech from October 1988,

22 at the international October gathering of writers in the Association of

23 Writers of Serbia. So the year is 1988. Inter alia, it says: "Stane

24 Dolanc, in agreement with Mika Spiljak and Josip Vrhovec, organised the

25 murder of Stjepan Djurekovic in the Federal Republic of Germany. The paid

Page 43157

1 assassin, Zeljko Raznjatovic, called Arkan, who lives in Belgrade today,

2 according to evidence from the documents of attorney-at-law Cvetic, was

3 rewarded with the rank of Colonel and received the gift of a pistol with

4 the engraved dedication: 'To Zeljko From Stane.' Anyone in their right

5 mind would ask how was it possible that a man like Dolanc was a member of

6 the collective head of state of Yugoslavia? How is it possible for Josip

7 Vrhovec to be that as well, a man compromised by various criminal

8 activities and known as an overt supporter of pro-Ustasha ideology.

9 Unfortunately, in Yugoslavia, anything goes."

10 Mr. Robinson, I must admit to you that I was warned from many

11 quarters after this speech that I would not live much longer, that Dolanc

12 would have me killed.

13 One of the persons who issued such a warning to me saying that

14 Dolanc would liquidate me for sure was the former minister of the interior

15 of Serbia, Vojin Lukic.

16 This was an act of great courage at that time, to present this

17 kind of thing in public. When Stane Dolanc left, Arkan was taken over by

18 the new head of state security a Croat, Zdravko Mustac.

19 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

20 Q. Just stop there. Mustac, who came from Croatia as an appointee

21 and he was the new head of the state security service of Yugoslavia, when

22 did he take over Arkan?

23 A. Well, immediately after Dolanc left. I cannot give you the exact

24 date, Mr. Milosevic. That is really beyond my possibilities now, but as

25 soon as Dolanc left, Mustac took him over.

Page 43158

1 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Seselj, you had evidence to support the claim

2 that you made in that speech?

3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson, my evidence is there

4 from the information that I received personally. My evidence is my

5 personal courage. To say this in public in 1988. Don't expect too much

6 from me. I am a lone man, a political dissident at the time.

7 JUDGE ROBINSON: It seems, apart from liquidation, you could also

8 face libel charges, defamation charges if it couldn't be substantiated.

9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Had that been untrue, I would have

10 certainly been sent to prison and I would have been held accountable

11 because it would have been a serious crime, offending a high state

12 official. However, I even filed criminal reports against Stane Dolanc,

13 and you have that in the tab too. Two criminal reports. And then I

14 pressed charges against Stane Dolanc. There was a civil suit that I

15 started before a court of law, but that was completely unrelated to this.

16 He had to retain a lawyer who represented him. So I started this

17 offensive and --

18 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic.

19 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

20 Q. Mr. Seselj, what you said just now is something that I'd like you

21 to explain to the degree to which it would explain Arkan's position at the

22 time in our country; his protectors and the connections he had, in a way.

23 A. With such protectors that Arkan had, he could quite literally do

24 whatever he wanted in Belgrade. He caused incidents. The police did not

25 dare arrest him. Once he wounded a policeman, he was not held accountable

Page 43159

1 before a court of law. Arkan could literally do whatever he wanted to do

2 and no one could do anything about it.

3 Q. Mr. Seselj, it is said here that Arkan in a way was under the

4 control of the MUP of the Republic of Serbia. And then, since they say he

5 was under the control of the MUP of the Republic of Serbia, that he was

6 practically under my control. Is that correct and do you know about this?

7 A. No. Arkan was not under the control of the MUP of Serbia, he was

8 under the control of the federal MUP. And the federal MUP was much

9 stronger than the MUP of the Republic of Serbia until Yugoslavia

10 definitely fell apart. That is to say until the archives of the federal

11 MUP were taken over sometime in 1992.

12 Q. Thank you. Is there anything else you have to add to this or to

13 the assertions that are often made here that Arkan was in a way attached

14 to the state organs of the Republic of Serbia?

15 A. In 1980, before the war broke out, Arkan was arrested in Croatia

16 and weapons were found on his person. He was held in a Croatian prison

17 for months. And then, all of a sudden, he was released. He returned to

18 Serbia, he established the Serb Volunteer Guard and went to war. Those

19 are the facts.

20 I don't want to speculate about all the things that these facts

21 could mean, but the facts are very, very telling, and I'm just going to

22 restrict myself to presenting the facts.

23 Q. Now, is there any other paramilitary organisation that you know

24 of, a major one? There's no need to --

25 A. There were others, like the Yellow Wasps and others. You know, in

Page 43160

1 this war the situation was rather chaotic. The JNA was not always capable

2 of stopping the establishment or preventing the existence of paramilitary

3 formations. Then there were situations when various gangs of criminals

4 set up their own paramilitary formations under the slogan of fighting for

5 Serb national interests. They looted and committed war crimes.

6 Q. Now when you basically described everything that had to do with

7 paramilitary formations, and before that you explained how the volunteers

8 of the Serb Radical Party behaved, all these parties, that is to say your

9 party and these parties that had paramilitary formations, were opposition

10 parties at that time. On the basis of what you have presented, can it be

11 seen that the Serb Radical Party actually sent volunteers to the JNA and

12 under JNA command, and was it not the only opposition party that, as far

13 as the establishment of paramilitary formations is concerned, respected

14 the law or, rather, did not establish paramilitary organisations?

15 A. Yes. Yes. The Serb Radical Party was [Realtime transcript read

16 in error "was not"] the only opposition party which strictly adhered to

17 the law and exclusively sent its volunteers to the JNA. There is not a

18 single case in the war that the volunteers of the Serb Radical Party

19 operated outside the JNA.

20 Q. Was there a single case that you personally --

21 JUDGE ROBINSON: In Mr. Seselj's answer, "Yes, the Serb Radical

22 Party was not the only party that adhered to the law." I thought he said

23 that it was the only party. So that should be corrected on the

24 transcript.

25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, well, that means that the

Page 43161

1 interpretation that you heard wasn't good. The Serb Radical Party was the

2 only one that strictly adhered to the law and sent its volunteers

3 exclusively to the JNA.

4 JUDGE ROBINSON: That has been taken care of.

5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.

6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson, obviously you've

7 learned Serbian.

8 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Seselj, did I understand incorrectly that you had

9 said that there are some volunteers who went to the local defence under

10 the direction of JNA?

11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I have said to you that all

12 volunteers were in the JNA. Some were sent to the Territorial Defence of

13 Western Slavonia. About 500 of them were there incessantly, volunteers of

14 the Serb Radical Party, but under the command of an active-duty officer of

15 the JNA, Colonel Trbojevic, because in a state of war and an imminent

16 threat of war the JNA takes over control over the entire Territorial

17 Defence. That is what our laws said.

18 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.

19 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

20 Q. Mr. Seselj, you personally, in any case or at any time, did you

21 retain control or command over your volunteers that you sent to the JNA?

22 A. No. I had no command but I always did whatever was within the

23 realm of my possibilities to tell the volunteers before they left how they

24 should behave, what their morale should be and that they should observe

25 the laws of war.

Page 43162

1 Q. You've already explained that. When the JNA withdrew from Krajina

2 and from Bosnia-Herzegovina, the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was set

3 up. Our citizens were withdrawn from the territory of the Federal

4 Republic of Yugoslavia. Note: From outside the territory of the Federal

5 Republic of Yugoslavia. Where did they go?

6 A. Most of them left with the JNA, but others joined the army of

7 Republika Srpska and started fighting with them. That was an act of their

8 own free will. In the future, also our members would leave Serbia, but

9 always they were within the regular troops of the army of Republika

10 Srpska.

11 Q. So even after that they were never part of any paramilitary

12 organisation and they never set up any paramilitary organisation?

13 A. Absolutely. They were never any paramilitary organisation and

14 they never set up paramilitary organisations.

15 Q. All right. I would like to clarify something. I hope we've

16 clarified this fully. Let me just clarify one particular point here. A

17 person nicknamed Zuca, was he one of your volunteers at any time?

18 A. Yes. Vojin Vuckovic Zuca. He was a volunteer of the Serb Radical

19 Party in Eastern Slavonia. He was expelled from the unit where he fought

20 due to looting, and after Eastern Slavonia, he never appeared anywhere as

21 a volunteer from the Serb Radical Party. However, subsequently he set up

22 some paramilitary formation of his own that he called the Yellow Wasps,

23 and his formation was operating in the area of Zvornik until the

24 authorities of Republika Srpska arrested him and broke up this formation

25 of his. Later on, he was tried in Sabac, together with his brother, and

Page 43163

1 since then he had no contacts with the Serb Radical Party. As a matter of

2 fact, over here I received his statement in the investigative procedure as

3 part of the exculpatory material I received, and in this statement he said

4 that he left our party because of cooperation with the regime in Serbia.

5 Of course nobody is going to say of his own free will that he was a

6 criminal, a thief, and that that is why he was expelled, so now he's

7 trying to find an explanation, but it's ridiculous.

8 Q. All right. When you expelled him from Eastern Slavonia from your

9 ranks - I mean the ranks of your political party - he set up some

10 paramilitary formation of his own in Bosnia. Do you know how the

11 authorities in Serbia reacted to the knowledge of some crimes committed by

12 the Yellow Wasps?

13 A. He was arrested and tried in the well-known Sabac trial. It was

14 very difficult because it was hard to find witnesses to accuse him of all

15 the things contained in the indictment, but as far as I can remember, both

16 he and his brother were convicted.

17 Q. In tab 27, is there a document of the district prosecutor's office

18 in Sabac dated the 9th of November, 1993? And does it involve these

19 persons and the start of criminal proceedings due to war crimes?

20 MR. KAY: There's one matter we should deal with in relation to

21 this document, and it might not be known to the accused.

22 This document was produced earlier in proceedings through a

23 witness who was C004 and subject to protective measures. Those protective

24 measures were withdrawn on the request of that witness on the 16th of

25 October, 2002. That can be seen at the transcript page 11647, and he gave

Page 43164












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Page 43165

1 evidence in open session. Then on the 17th of October, the next day, his

2 evidence was thereafter given in private session again because of

3 information that had come to the WVS concerning his personal security and

4 that of his family. That's at transcript page 11726.

5 Eventually, after his testimony, he then through the Prosecution

6 said that he had no objection to the testimony he had given being made

7 public rather than being under seal, and the Court made an order

8 respecting that in relation to the evidence that had been given, the

9 testimony. However, the exhibits that he had produced still remained

10 under seal, and they had not been the subject of the Court order to permit

11 them to be put into the public domain.

12 Prosecution made a filing on this on the 26th of February, 2003,

13 and the following day, on the 27th of February, 2003, the Court made the

14 order releasing the closed-session testimony, but as I said, the exhibits

15 produced were not the subject of that order and therefore have still

16 remained under seal. And we know that this document is one of those

17 documents that was put to him as an exhibit by the accused and was given

18 the number D57.

19 JUDGE KWON: 56.


21 MR. KAY: Tab 27 here, D56. Looking at the --

22 JUDGE KWON: He didn't give his evidence under pseudonym, did he?

23 MR. KAY: Originally he was C004, then he had his name as a result

24 of -- his testimony.

25 JUDGE KWON: Thank you.

Page 43166

1 MR. KAY: And then the testimony went back into private session.

2 So it was a rather complicated series of events. We don't need to be in

3 private session dealing with this as it's not on the ELMO.

4 Looking at the document, the only issues that I could see why it

5 should remain under seal was because one particular passage refers to a

6 sexual assault.

7 [Trial Chamber confers]


9 MR. NICE: If the only concern is with the identification of

10 somebody involved in a sexual offence, then there's probably no reason why

11 we shouldn't deal with it broadly publicly and privately so far as any

12 reference to that part of it's concerned.

13 MR. KAY: I only raise that trying to think of any possible

14 reasons why it should not be, to that extent, public, and it seems to me

15 that that could be redacted and no harm caused in relation to the essence

16 of this witness's testimony on the matter and to permit the issue to be

17 properly aired and put in public.

18 JUDGE ROBINSON: Well, the Chamber is grateful to you, Mr. Kay,

19 for the --

20 MR. KAY: It's paragraph 2, page 2, the only one of sensitivity

21 that I could see.

22 JUDGE ROBINSON: So we can -- we can hear evidence --

23 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson --

24 JUDGE ROBINSON: We can hear evidence on it in public unless there

25 is to be a reference to paragraph 2 on page 2.

Page 43167

1 MR. KAY: And if this could be ordered now to be a public

2 document, subject to that redaction in paragraph 2 of the sexual matters.

3 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. And we make an order in those terms.

4 Do you understand, then, Mr. Seselj?

5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I understand fully, Mr. Robinson,

6 but it was not my intention to testify about that at all. I don't intend

7 to go into the details of the charges pressed against Dusko and Vojin

8 Vuckovic. I am just testifying that they were tried before a Serbian

9 court in 1993, just after they committed the crimes. I don't know about

10 the details of those crimes. And there was no danger for a moment that I

11 would mention the name of the rape victim. Of course she has to be

12 protected if she is a rape victim. But this is an authentic document in

13 the Serbian judiciary.

14 My point is that they were tried for war crimes they committed in

15 the area of Zvornik. I don't know about the details of the crimes. I

16 know whatever I could read from the newspapers when the trial started. I

17 was not an eyewitness to the crimes so that my testimony on the issue is

18 limited to the fact that they were tried by Serbian authorities.

19 JUDGE ROBINSON: [Previous translation continues] ... question

20 that you have about this now, Mr. Milosevic.

21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, precisely the fact that the

22 authorities in Serbia, the first authorities in the area of the former

23 Yugoslavia who arrested this man and tried him for war crimes.

24 JUDGE ROBINSON: [Previous translation continues] ... in

25 evidence.

Page 43168

1 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

2 Q. All right. Mr. Seselj, please, to cut a long story short, please

3 open page 2 of this document, and please read the first four lines.

4 A. It says here that from the same place in the cultural hall in

5 Celopek he took away four persons whom he later killed, whereby he

6 committed the war crime against civilian population, article this and that

7 from the Criminal Code of Yugoslavia.

8 Q. Could you read the date.

9 A. The 9th September, 1993.

10 Q. So that was initiated on the 9th of September.

11 A. And the events, as far as we can see from this, took place in the

12 middle of 1992.

13 Q. Can we see that the events did not happen on the territory of

14 Serbia?

15 A. Yes. The events happened in the territory of Bosnia and

16 Herzegovina.

17 Q. Do we see that the reason he was tried in Serbia was that he was

18 our citizen?

19 A. He could have been arrested and tried even if he hadn't been.

20 Every state has the obligation to deal with war criminals and try them.

21 Q. Do you know that anyone in the territory of the former Yugoslavia,

22 before our judiciary and our state authorities, prosecuted any war crimes?

23 A. As far as I know, there is no example of the Croatian or any other

24 judiciary in the former Yugoslavia tried any war crimes before this case.

25 This is the first case that somebody was tried for war crimes.

Page 43169

1 Q. Thank you, Mr. Seselj.

2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I hope that this can be exhibited

3 or, rather, since it has already been exhibited, I hope that we can unseal

4 the document, because it has no significance as far as the testimony of

5 Mr. Seselj is concerned.

6 [Trial Chamber confers]

7 JUDGE ROBINSON: Well, that document has already been exhibited,

8 Mr. Milosevic.

9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes. I tendered it during the cross

10 examination of the witness referred to a minute ago by Mr. Kay.

11 JUDGE ROBINSON: As far as this enclosure is concerned, we'll

12 admit tabs 5 to 8 and tab 10.

13 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Seselj, I still cannot find this reference in

14 the document, I'm afraid. You're referring to an allegation that in a

15 cultural hall in Celopek he took away four persons whom he later killed.

16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] That is on page 2, first line of the

17 Serb original, Serbian original. Unfortunately, I don't know the English

18 language and I cannot help you with the English version.

19 JUDGE BONOMY: Does it say something about these people being

20 taken to help transport bodies before they were killed?

21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. The only thing it says here is

22 that they were taken for an alleged interrogation - nobody knows where -

23 and that they were later found killed. It must be that their corpses were

24 found subsequently.

25 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

Page 43170

1 Q. We could have quoted a lot. It says during the same period --

2 JUDGE BONOMY: No, I now have it. It's 34 people. It was

3 translated as four people. But it's on the second page of ours, if it's

4 the same way.

5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It is an interpretation problem.

6 Thirty-four.

7 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you very much. I have it now. It's on the

8 second page, in the second top paragraph.

9 JUDGE ROBINSON: We will adjourn for 20 minutes.

10 --- Recess taken at 12.17 p.m.

11 --- On resuming at 12.41 p.m.

12 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Milosevic.

13 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

14 Q. Mr. Seselj, we will now leave the issue of the Yellow Wasps. We

15 have cleared that up. We heard several witnesses here. Some of them used

16 the term "Seselj's men" in relation to some paramilitary units. Do you

17 have any explanation for such a use of that term in view of all the

18 explanations you have provided and the way in which your volunteers went

19 to serve first as volunteers in the JNA and later in the army of the

20 Serbian Krajina and Republika Srpska?

21 A. Well, that term, "Seselj's men," could have different meanings in

22 different situations. Sometimes it was used to mean volunteers of the

23 Serbian Radical Party. In other cases, local population in various Serb

24 places called themselves Seselj's men. I found, for instance, in some

25 judgements, such as the judgement in the case of Brdjanin that there was a

Page 43171

1 paramilitary unit of local Serbs in Bosnian Krajina who called themselves

2 Seselj's men. And whenever journalists would ask me about it, I would say

3 that all honourable Serbs are Seselj's men, that all honourable Serbs

4 agree with my political positions and views. That is what I think. But

5 the very term "Seselj's men" doesn't mean anything in itself. It can mean

6 political followers or something like that, but there was never any

7 paramilitary unit backed by the Serbian Radical Party or me as the

8 president of that party.

9 Q. Including the White Eagles, which some witnesses ascribed to you?

10 A. Well, it happened often that Muslims gave statements for their

11 media, or Croats for their media, saying "Seselj's White Eagles." Such

12 confusions were not infrequent. However, members of the Radical Party had

13 strict instructions to avoid all contact with Mauzer's Panthers, with

14 White Eagles, Yellow Wasps, Draskovic's volunteers and paramilitary

15 groups, and we always told them keep them at army's length. We used our

16 influence as much as we could in that respect.

17 Q. Do you know that members of some other paramilitary units that

18 were active outside of the territory of the FRY and Serbia or, rather, in

19 the area of Krajina or Republika Srpska and who were suspected of war

20 crimes were arrested?

21 A. I remember Drazen Erdemovic, who was arrested on suspicion that he

22 participated in the execution of prisoners of war in Srebrenica. I know

23 that a group of Serbs was arrested in Knin. I don't know the outcome, but

24 they were in the prison in Knin when I visited the area, and they were

25 suspected of maltreating the local population somewhere. I cannot

Page 43172

1 remember all the details.

2 Q. Do you know anything -- because you mentioned Erdemovic just now,

3 do you know anything about the circumstances under which members of the

4 so-called Spider group were arrested and why they were arrested?

5 A. Members of the Spider group were arrested for two reasons; a well

6 grounded suspicion that they were preparing an attempt to assassinate you

7 as president of the republic, but also the suspicion that they were

8 involved in the 10th Sabotage Detachment that was involved in the

9 execution of Muslim prisoners of war in Srebrenica and the surrounding

10 area. And we made a public statement expressing all these suspicions,

11 however, they were tried and that was never completed.

12 Q. Why was that never completed?

13 A. As soon as the regime changed on the 5th of October, 2000, all

14 those who were suspected of executing those POWs were released from

15 prison. We had information that Milorad Pelemis was the commander on the

16 spot. He was commander of the 10th Sabotage Detachment. We knew that he

17 was very close with a certain Dominik Petrusic. Nobody is prosecuting

18 them, not even this Hague Tribunal. They are free to travel the world.

19 And Dominik Petrusic even rallied some Serbian volunteers to wage a war in

20 the Congo under the command of the French secret service. They are

21 directly responsible for the execution of prisoners of war in Srebrenica.

22 Nobody is prosecuting them at all.

23 I, as deputy Prime Minister, worked on the issue of Srebrenica

24 very intensively. I understood the execution of POWs in Srebrenica as a

25 great shame on the Serbian people, and I tried to find out all I could.

Page 43173

1 Q. On several occasions here, including the testimony of General

2 Delic and General Stevanovic, Mr. Nice here made the claim that the

3 authorities of Serbia and the FRY covered up and hushed up the crime in

4 Srebrenica. Could you please look at tab 29. That relates to the arrest

5 of this group Spiders, and let us see whether we have some documents here

6 that can be opposed to Mr. Nice's claim that the authorities in the FRY

7 and Serbia tried to cover up the crime.

8 A. Here we have several statements of the then minister for

9 information of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, and what he stated is

10 in fact the position of the Republic of Serbia and the federal government.

11 He made these statements based on the overall knowledge that was in the

12 possession of the investigative authorities of Serbia, and he said the

13 following to the public: First, he made public the number of those

14 executed, the perpetrators, and those who are indirectly responsible for

15 the execution.

16 Q. Please look at this report, a report published in the then most

17 important daily newspaper of the 12th February, 2000, where the federal

18 minister of information informs the public of these events. Do you have

19 that in front of you?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. Look at what is written in this short second paragraph. What does

22 the federal minister state on behalf of the government of Yugoslavia

23 regarding this Spider group that our authorities arrested?

24 A. He says that, "Elucidation of the crime near Srebrenica is our

25 debt towards the truth," and he states the intention to identify all those

Page 43174












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13 English transcripts.













Page 43175

1 who are responsible for that execution because that inflicted a great

2 damage to the Serbian people. The Serbian people first of all, because we

3 felt blemished by the whole thing. It is contrary to all our beliefs and

4 traditions.

5 Q. What does this Minister Matic say to the public about the

6 background of the crime in Srebrenica and the perpetrators?

7 A. Very briefly, that it was the 10th Sabotage Detachment that

8 committed the shootings, under the command of Milorad Pelemis. The 10th

9 Sabotage Detachment had Serbs, Croats, Muslims, Slovenians, and even many

10 foreigners in its ranks. It was a multi-ethnic military unit.

11 Q. Does it follow from this that it was a mercenary unit?

12 A. Yes. It follows from this very directly that it was a mercenary

13 military unit, and our intelligence services found out that it was the

14 French intelligence service that was behind this unit, and we stated this

15 in public in 2000.

16 After the war and after the Dayton agreement, accord, the members

17 of this unit continued their activity. As mercenaries of the Western

18 forces in Bosnia and Herzegovina, they kidnapped Stevan Todorovic in

19 Zlatibor and delivered him for money to the Western forces in Bosnia and

20 Herzegovina. Stevan Todorovic was later tried here at The Hague Tribunal

21 for other crimes.

22 Instead of being tried and instead of being arrested as the main

23 perpetrators of the executions in Srebrenica, they are cooperating with

24 the Western forces in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Milorad Pelemis and Dominik

25 Petrusic can freely travel all over Europe without any hindrance or

Page 43176

1 obstacle. They can obtain visas from the European Union whenever they

2 like. They seem to be privileged citizens of the European Union.

3 Q. When Goran Matic was the federal minister of information and when

4 he said this, these people were in prison?

5 A. Yes, they were in prison under investigation for Srebrenica and

6 for organising an attempted assassination against you.

7 Q. In view of these facts published on behalf of the government, the

8 minister of information, was there any doubt that these men were directly

9 responsible for the crime in Srebrenica?

10 A. We had an abundance of evidence, many statements by eyewitnesses

11 that it was they who were the perpetrators of these crimes. I personally

12 dealt with these issues in the government of Serbia. I investigated

13 various circumstances, and I was able to assure myself of the facts. Was

14 able to ascertain this.

15 MR. NICE: The account being given is highly generalised, and of

16 course the witness is referring to material that will exist in documentary

17 form and it's going to hold things up if we wait until cross-examination

18 to discover whether he has them with him and whether we can review them.

19 The Chamber might think it helpful to know at this stage whether the

20 material upon which the witness is relying is available for our

21 inspection.

22 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Seselj, I ask you whether that material, the

23 abundance of evidence to which you referred in your last answer, is

24 available.

25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know whether it's available

Page 43177

1 here. I don't have it available because it's material belonging to the

2 competent government authorities in Serbia. I was able to access this

3 material while I was the deputy Prime Minister. It is the new government

4 in Serbia that has inherited this material. Here there are facts showing

5 that we were holding Milorad Pelemis and some others in prison under

6 suspicion of having taken part in the shooting of Muslim prisoners in

7 Srebrenica.

8 JUDGE ROBINSON: You have answered the question.

9 Mr. Milosevic.

10 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

11 Q. As for materials, Mr. Seselj, in tab 28 you have the official

12 criminal report against Drazen Erdemovic, who was tried here. Have you

13 got it? Have you seen it?

14 A. Yes, I have.

15 Q. In this document --

16 A. It's dated the 6th of March, 1996.

17 JUDGE ROBINSON: There is no translation, in my tab at any rate,

18 for that. Let it be placed on the ELMO. It's fairly short.

19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] This document is only three pages

20 long. It's a criminal report. There is a seal, a stamp in the heading

21 showing the date, the 6th of March, 1996.

22 As there is a criminal report against him here, what does it say

23 in it?

24 A. It says here that a criminal report is being submitted against

25 Drazen Erdemovic, who was not a national of Serbia, and by ethnicity he's

Page 43178

1 a Croat, because there are grounds to suspect that in the village of

2 Pilica on the 20th of July, as a member of the 10th Sabotage Detachment of

3 the army of Republika Srpska, within the framework of the armed conflict

4 on the territory of Bosnia-Herzegovina, together with seven members of

5 Republika Srpska, committed murders of civilians from 10.30 to 16.00 --

6 from 10.30 to 16.00 hours they killed about 1.200 citizens of Muslim

7 ethnicity from firearms. The victims were previously brought by buses to

8 the site.

9 Q. So the crime is a war crime against a civilian population from

10 Article 142, item 1, of the Criminal Code of Yugoslavia.

11 A. Yes, but I disagree that this is an execution of civilians. In my

12 view, this crime is actually the shooting of prisoners of war, which is

13 against the Geneva Conventions. The shooting of prisoners of war, of

14 course, is also punishable by the most strict sanctions.

15 JUDGE ROBINSON: Don't volunteer evidence; answer the questions

16 asked. You are a learned man, but here you are a witness, and you must

17 follow the lead from the accused who has brought you here as a witness. A

18 witness who volunteers answers presents a danger to the party who has

19 called him.

20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson, I cannot know to whom

21 I am a threat, but I am certainly a threat to many. For example, the

22 Office of the Prosecutor. But what can I do about it, because I am a

23 threat simply by existing.

24 JUDGE ROBINSON: Just answer the questions asked by Mr. Milosevic.

25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I understand your comment, yes.

Page 43179

1 JUDGE BONOMY: Mr. Seselj, you identified the force responsible

2 for this as the 10th Sabotage Detachment, and the commander -- or one of

3 the commanders as Milorad Pelemis, and you described that as a mercenary

4 force. Now, who was paying them?

5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Listen to a direct question from

6 Mr. Milosevic as to whether this follows from the fact that they were not

7 only Serbs but also Croats, Muslims, Slovenians, and other ethnicities. I

8 said yes. I don't know who and when paid them, but our investigating

9 organs established that they were in league with the French intelligence

10 service. So I have been quite precise in my statement.

11 JUDGE BONOMY: Were they part of the JNA?

12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, they were never part of the JNA,

13 but they were part of the army of Republika Srpska, but a quite

14 independent part of the army as they did not belong to any corps. The

15 entire army of Republika Srpska was divided into corps and then brigades

16 within the corps. But they were a rather independent unit under the

17 banner of the army of Republika Srpska.

18 JUDGE BONOMY: And Pelemis, what nationality is he?

19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Pelemis, as far as I know, is a Serb

20 by ethnicity.

21 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.

22 MR. NICE: Your Honours, on that topic I decided to let the

23 leading question from the accused about this being a mercenary force go

24 because I simply can't deal with all the leading questions, and indeed

25 Your Honour indicated earlier you didn't really want them all to be dealt

Page 43180

1 with as challenges. But when we see the very careful way that the witness

2 and the accused, in question and answer, were able to give evidence of the

3 kind that was given, it emphasises the need that on every topic questions

4 should not be asked in a leading form. Because but for His Honour Judge

5 Bonomy's analysis of the answer of the witness, it might have appeared

6 that he was volunteering at some stage that this was a paid force without

7 ever having that knowledge himself.

8 JUDGE ROBINSON: On that occasion I think you should have

9 objected, should have brought that to my attention, because that is a

10 matter in dispute. What I said was that I'm inclined to be lenient where

11 the issues are not in dispute between the parties.

12 MR. NICE: It's very difficult to get it right when we're dealing

13 with this particular manner of questioning.

14 JUDGE BONOMY: He's also a difficult witness to lead, I would

15 imagine, Mr. Nice, and for that reason also there might be a little more

16 indulgence than would otherwise be the case.

17 MR. NICE: I think, Your Honour, will find that the topics being

18 dealt with have all been --

19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Most difficult, Mr. Bonomy.

20 MR. NICE: I think you'll find that all these topics have been

21 carefully prepared in the proofing sessions and that both the questioner

22 and the witness knows exactly where they're going.

23 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

24 Q. Mr. Seselj, to avoid putting a leading question to you, would you

25 please read what it says in the statement of reasons on the following page

Page 43181

1 of this criminal report against Erdemovic. What does it say in the

2 statement of reasons? Under whose orders and who shot the prisoners of

3 war in Srebrenica?

4 A. It says the following: "The person reported --" that's Drazen

5 Erdemovic -- "on the 20th of July, 1995, in the morning, as a member of

6 the 10th Sabotage Detachment of the army of Republika Srpska under the

7 orders of his commander, Milorad Pelemis, with seven members --" and then

8 their names are listed. I'll read them if necessary. "-- went by van to

9 Zvornik and reported to a lieutenant colonel unknown to him of the

10 military police of the army of Republika Srpska. With this lieutenant

11 colonel, escorted by two military policemen, this group went to the --"

12 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please slow down when reading.

13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- went to the village of Pilica

14 where --

15 JUDGE ROBINSON: The interpreter just asked you to slow down.

16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] "After the lieutenant colonel said

17 that in 15 minutes' time the first bus with Muslims would arrive, he went

18 off in the direction of Zvornik. Soon after his departure, a bus arrived

19 containing about 70 to 80 Muslims from Srebrenica and the surrounding

20 area, male, between 17 and 60 years of age, escorted by two military

21 policemen of the army of Republika Srpska. They were taken out of buses

22 -- out of the bus in groups of 10 to 15 men. Under the orders of the

23 Commander Gojkovic Brano, the whole group then started killing them,

24 shooting from M-70 automatic rifles, except for Stanko Savanovic who used

25 a pistol to kill those who had been wounded. This was repeated until the

Page 43182

1 whole bus was empty. Other buses continued arriving. Another group of

2 about 10 soldiers under the command of lieutenant colonel -- the

3 lieutenant colonel from Zvornik, continued killing, and in this way about

4 1.200 people were killed."

5 I will tell you that I dealt with this and I feel that the number

6 of 1.200 is an exaggerated figure, because it was impossible for this

7 small group of soldiers to kill so many men by individual shooting. So

8 for some reason this figure has been exaggerated. I do not deny that a

9 total of 1.000 to 1.200 Muslims were shot in the Srebrenica area, but in

10 this particular case I established very simply, very easily that one or

11 two groups of 10 men could not have --

12 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you.

13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] -- shot so many prisoners by

14 individual shooting.

15 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, may I ask, is it your case that --

16 and bearing in mind, of course, that you don't have to prove anything --

17 but is it your case that the persons responsible for the killings in

18 Srebrenica were part of a mercenary unit comprised of Serbs, Croats,

19 Muslims, Slovenians, and even foreigners?

20 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson, I have no evidence as

21 to whether they were mercenaries as a unit, but according to what the

22 minister of information stated on behalf of the government, and it follows

23 from the interviews with these people who are arrested and then released

24 after the coup d'etat of the 5th of October by the new authorities, it

25 follows that they were paid for this. And this is what it says in tab 29,

Page 43183

1 in the statements made by the minister of information, statements made

2 public by the minister of information. There is no doubt that this was a

3 multi-ethnic unit.

4 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

5 Q. Mr. Seselj, please look at the middle column of this newspaper

6 report from Politika which you have already quoted, where Matic says the

7 massacre is being ascribed to the Serbs. This is the passage before the

8 last, and read it.

9 A. "This was perpetrated by a multi-ethnic band containing Croats,

10 Slovenians, Muslims, and several Serbs. The executors were said to be by

11 Matic and by Pelemis: Kos, a Slovenian, and Zijad Zigic who later took

12 the name of Zivko Micic. He changed his name to a Serb name. He was

13 accompanied by Drazen Erdemovic who was supposed to testify in The Hague

14 against Karadzic and Mladic."

15 Q. Will you continue reading. What does it say here? They are

16 quoting the minister of information.

17 A. The minister then says he -- that is Drazen Erdemovic -- is in The

18 Hague and they need him for something else so that he only got four years

19 in prison for killing 1.200 people and his wife and child have been

20 transferred to the Netherlands.

21 Q. Very well. We needn't go on. What does he go on to say in the

22 third passage, the passage before the last, in the middle column?

23 A. "The murderers and killers are serving their interests. What is

24 the West offering us? A democracy of paid murderers, of hitmen. The case

25 of Milorad Pelemis proves a lot in this respect."

Page 43184












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13 English transcripts.













Page 43185

1 Q. If we raise the issue of money, in the third paragraph from the

2 bottom in the middle column, it says here --

3 A. That Srebrenica should surrender without a struggle, and

4 previously Naser Oric left the town. A helicopter came to pick him up.

5 This is well known. It was agreed that members of the 10th Sabotage

6 Detachment should carry out a massacre for which they would receive 2

7 million Deutschmarks. Minister Matic said this.

8 Q. Well, the minister of information was not in charge of the

9 investigation.

10 A. No, but based on information provided by our investigating organs,

11 he provided information for the public.

12 Q. So he could not have engaged in speculation here. He had to rely

13 on information provided by the investigating organs who are holding all

14 these people at the time.

15 A. Yes. And the investigation, as far as I knew as deputy Prime

16 Minister, was proceeding very well.

17 JUDGE ROBINSON: You are not observing the pause between question

18 and answer, and this is very unfair to the interpreters.

19 MR. NICE: I think these last passages are not translated, unless

20 I've missed the translation. I've been trying to find them but it seems

21 to me they're not translated.

22 JUDGE KWON: I couldn't locate them.

23 MR. NICE: And therefore they should, I suppose, be identified on

24 the overhead projector so we know what we're looking at.

25 JUDGE KWON: He said it's in Politika.

Page 43186

1 MR. NICE: Politika, and therefore -- I think he said it's in the

2 middle column, but it's not entirely helpful to have it dealt with without

3 identification of what we should be looking at.

4 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, just clarify. Where was the

5 passage taken from, the one to which you just referred?

6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] These paragraphs that I quoted now

7 are in the middle column of the report from the Politika daily.

8 However, I'd like to draw your attention to the following:

9 Mr. Nice explained a few minutes ago that Matic gave a statement to

10 Politika. Matic, Minister of Information. He did not make a statement to

11 Politika. He informed the journalists at a press conference thereof.

12 In this tab, we have this report from Politika. That is a daily.

13 Then a report from Ekspres Politika, then a report from Novosti. So

14 reports from several newspapers. From Ekspres. I do not have the

15 transcript from of the report of Borba. Here it is from Borba too. I do

16 not have the transcript of the report from the electronic media, but what

17 this is about is that these are very important statements, and it is

18 customary for the minister of information, on behalf of the government, to

19 present such matters at a press conference. He does not give statements

20 to individual newspapers but he informs journalists at convened press

21 conferences about things that the government wishes to tell them about.

22 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

23 Q. Do you have any experience about this, Mr. Seselj?

24 A. Yes. This is what the public heard --

25 JUDGE ROBINSON: I'm not allowing that question. Ask another

Page 43187

1 question.

2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] All right.

3 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

4 Q. Could you please now look at the first page of the criminal report

5 against Erdemovic. At the end of the first paragraph, which starts with

6 the word "Protiv," does it show when he was arrested?

7 A. Yes, it says here that Erdemovic was arrested on the 3rd of March,

8 1996.

9 Q. So this criminal report --

10 A. Half a year after the execution in Srebrenica.

11 Q. All right. All right. But the criminal report was filed on the

12 6th of March, 1996?

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. Three days after he was heard?

15 A. That was as long as police detention could last, according to our

16 law. After three days, the police had to release him or to hand him over

17 to an investigating judge, together with a criminal report.

18 Q. And this criminal report was based on the three days of hearings

19 of Erdemovic?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. In this document, can we see all the names that the -- that

22 Erdemovic revealed during his statement?

23 A. Erdemovic mentioned Milorad Pelemis, his commander, and seven

24 other members. That is Gojkovic Brano, Savanovic Stanko, Grolija Zoran,

25 Golijan Vlastimir, Boskic or Koskic Marko, Kos Franc, and Cvetkovic

Page 43188

1 Aleksandar. Those are the names that Erdemovic mentioned in the statement

2 given to our police or, rather, the state security service, the centre in

3 Novi Sad.

4 Q. Now, since this information was accessible to the office of

5 Mrs. Del Ponte, since Erdemovic was sent here, are you aware of the

6 circumstances under which Erdemovic was sent?

7 A. Erdemovic was arrested. He was in our prison. The Hague asked

8 for him, and he personally expressed his wish to go to The Hague Tribunal,

9 otherwise, according to our law, he could not have been extradited,

10 although he's a foreign national, you see. But there would be a long,

11 protracted process of extradition because it concerns a foreigner.

12 However, since he personally expressed the desire to go to The Hague

13 Tribunal, he was handed over very quickly. I don't know the exact date,

14 but the Prosecution's side will know that better. I think it was only

15 within ten days or so.

16 Q. Do you know that in the proceedings conducted here what it says

17 here in the criminal report was confirmed. That is to say that he

18 personally killed over 100 men?

19 A. Well, yes. He was convicted here for killing all these people,

20 but only to five years in prison. And he was released soon after, which

21 was astonishing.

22 Q. Since all of these facts are something that the office of the

23 Mrs. Del Ponte knows, how come it is possible that proceedings were not

24 instituted against any of these persons or indictments were not issued

25 against them?

Page 43189

1 A. These persons are under protection. They freely get visas of the

2 European Union, they travel worldwide, and no one can do anything to them.

3 Q. Is this referred to in the statements made by the minister of

4 information in relation to the arrested persons from the Pauk group?

5 JUDGE ROBINSON: Move to another question. This is not helpful.

6 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

7 Q. Mr. Seselj, in view of these official press releases of the

8 Yugoslav government, the arrest of the Spider group and everything that

9 happened accompanying these events, can anyone claim that the authorities

10 of Yugoslavia tried to hush up the crime in Srebrenica?

11 A. No. That claim is untenable. I'm a witness and a participant in

12 the all-out efforts made by the authorities and government of Yugoslavia

13 to solve that case, to discover the names the perpetrators, and that

14 everything should be bought before a court of law, everything that was

15 known. We thought that it was our legal, political, and moral obligation

16 that the crime of executing Muslim prisoners of war in Srebrenica should

17 not go unpunished. That was the policy of the government of the Republic

18 of Serbia.

19 Q. Do you have any knowledge about this under which conditions the

20 members of the Spider group, including the mentioned persons, were

21 released after the 5th of October?

22 A. They were released immediately, without informing the public about

23 this. And pro-Western political parties, even before their release and

24 before the change of government, were mocking our official public views as

25 to who was responsible for Srebrenica. They were mocking this. They said

Page 43190

1 that we invented the Spider group and they were making fun of our press

2 releases, and then they simply released them all from prison.

3 Q. Although it was clear that the members of this 10th Sabotage Unit

4 -- that they were all members of the 10th Sabotage Unit together with

5 Erdemovic?

6 A. Whoever wanted to know this, knew this. This was fully uncovered

7 that they took part in what happened in Srebrenica.

8 Q. Thank you, Mr. Seselj.

9 JUDGE ROBINSON: Does that conclude your examination?

10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] No, no. I have other questions to

11 put.

12 JUDGE ROBINSON: How much longer --

13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I haven't even --

14 JUDGE ROBINSON: How much longer will you be with this witness?

15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, I envisaged as much as I

16 announced but I'm moving a bit slower so I cannot exactly tell,

17 Mr. Robinson. I'll try to make an estimate this afternoon and I'll tell

18 you tomorrow morning.

19 JUDGE BONOMY: Before -- before you move on, the release on the

20 5th of October, remind me of the year?

21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] 2000.

22 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you.

23 MR. NICE: On the topic of timetable and before we move on, I

24 understand that the accused is going to be all day tomorrow, at least. It

25 affects our planning and the work we do in the preparation of any material

Page 43191

1 that's to be used in cross-examination. I'd be grateful to know that he's

2 going to be at least all day tomorrow. If he's going to be all next week

3 that would also be helpful for me to know.

4 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, you will let us know tomorrow

5 morning. We have to make plans. Assess the situation this evening and

6 let us know tomorrow morning.

7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Nice raised a question whether I

8 need all of tomorrow. I can accommodate him with this information,

9 namely, that I will certainly need all of tomorrow and at least another

10 day next week. So he can freely plan his cross-examination.

11 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

12 Q. Mr. Seselj, in November 1991, you were in Western Slavonia and

13 then in Banja Luka.

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. Who called you then and asked to meet with you?

16 A. I went to Western Slavonia by helicopter of the Yugoslav People's

17 Army, via Banja Luka, together with Ilija Sasic, Minister of Foreign

18 Affairs of Western Slavonia, who asked me to come there and to see the

19 people and the soldiers at the front line, because Western Slavonia was

20 surrounded by Croatian troops on all sides.

21 I spent two or three days in Western Slavonia. I returned to

22 Banja Luka. In Banja Luka I had a big rally of the Serb Radical Party,

23 and then that evening two high officials of the Serb Democratic Party from

24 Banja Luka came to the Bosna Hotel and told me that Milan Babic had

25 called, asking me to come to Knin urgently because Captain Dragan appeared

Page 43192

1 and he is making the army rebel against him and he is preparing a coup

2 d'etat. The same night I took a car together with those two high

3 officials of the SDS, and they brought me to Knin the next day.

4 Q. All right. You explained now how you went there. Babic in his

5 testimony here - and I'm not going into his motives now, I'm not going to

6 put leading questions to you - mentioned to you that General Marko

7 Negovanovic, Minister of Defence of Serbia, gave you a military helicopter

8 in November 1991.

9 A. At that time, General Negovanovic was not minister of defence of

10 Serbia. The minister of defence of Serbia at that time was General

11 Tomislav Simovic. I'm sure of that. General Marko Negovanovic at that

12 time was deputy chief of General Staff of the JNA. It is correct that in

13 Belgrade I called General Negovanovic and asked for a helicopter. General

14 Negovanovic, as deputy chief of General Staff directed me to the commander

15 of the air force and anti-aircraft defence, General Bozidar Stevanovic.

16 Bozidar Stevanovic gave me a helicopter with two pilots and from the

17 Banjica heliodrome I flew to Banja Luka. That is the full truth about

18 this. Marko Negovanovic was not minister of defence of Serbia at that

19 time.

20 Q. Thank you very much. Now, when they drove you there, those two

21 men, was there a meeting held with Babic then? And what did Babic ask you

22 for when you met up with him?

23 A. When I met up with him he told me all the things that were

24 happening in Knin and the surrounding area, what Captain Dragan was doing,

25 and he asked me to exercise my influence over the soldiers to curb Captain

Page 43193

1 Dragan's influence. I spoke twice on -- once on Radio Knin, once on Youth

2 Radio Knin, and I toured many military positions. At the front near

3 Benkovac I had a meeting with Captain Dragan that is recorded on camera.

4 We actually have this recording somewhere in Belgrade. And that is when

5 we had a verbal duel, and the public of Serbia is aware of that.

6 After this political activity of mine, the situation calmed down

7 considerably and the rally called by Captain Dragan was not really a very

8 big one. Not many soldiers attended, not very many people in general, so

9 it basically failed.

10 Q. Did you help Babic?

11 A. Of course I helped Babic, because, you see, the situation there

12 was rather complicated. There was a conflict between Milan Matic,

13 Minister of the Interior, and Milan Babic as Prime Minister. And then

14 Captain Dragan interfered and started a rebellion among the army ranks.

15 Although I thought that he had certain capabilities as a statesman, he

16 personally was a great coward, and he didn't dare go to the front line

17 because of that. And that's why the army didn't really like him. So it

18 wasn't really hard to start a rebellion among the military against a

19 person like Babic. Because someone who doesn't go to the front line

20 cannot be popular among the military. One of the elements to which I owe

21 my popularity at the time was that I went everywhere; to the front line,

22 to forward positions, and I shared the fate of all soldiers irrespective

23 of the danger involved, and the soldiers knew how to appreciate that.

24 When I spoke at both radio stations, I said that the Serb people

25 had to remain united, that there should be no internal conflicts, that

Page 43194












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13 English transcripts.













Page 43195

1 those who want internal conflicts while an armed clash is still going on

2 cannot be friends of the Serb people.

3 THE INTERPRETER: Could the speaker please be asked to slow down.

4 JUDGE ROBINSON: I have stopped you anyhow because you have

5 answered the question.

6 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

7 Q. Do you know the name of Miroslav Deronjic?

8 A. Yes, I know the name of Miroslav Deronjic. Throughout the war in

9 the territory of the former Bosnia-Herzegovina, he was the absolute master

10 of Bratunac. That is a town in Eastern Bosnia on the banks of the Drina

11 near Srebrenica.

12 Q. Tell me, to the best of your knowledge, did Miroslav Deronjic have

13 any connections with any political party in Serbia?

14 A. To the best of my knowledge, in the beginning he was a member of

15 the Serb Renewal Movement of Vuk Draskovic. When sometime in 1990

16 Draskovic had a rally in Bratunac, Miroslav Deronjic stood on the podium

17 together with him. After that, Miroslav Deronjic switched sides and he

18 joined the Serb Democratic Party. Then he was president of the Crisis

19 Staff of the municipality of Bratunac and the commander of the Bratunac

20 Brigade while the army of Republika Srpska had not fully been established

21 and organised.

22 Q. Do you have any knowledge of his relations with the White Eagles?

23 A. Yes. He brought some formation of the White Eagles from Serbia

24 and held them under his control there and they carried out his orders.

25 Q. He testified here. He was tried here, but at the same time he

Page 43196

1 testified for the other side. Do you know anything about the slaughter in

2 the village of Glogova and what Deronjic had to do with that?

3 A. Yes. Muslims lived in Glogova. Deronjic asked these Muslims to

4 hand over their weapons with the promise that they would be safe and

5 secure in their homes if they handed over their weapons. Muslims did hand

6 over weapons, and then Deronjic ordered an attack on the village of

7 Glogova and on that occasion 65 Muslims were killed, unarmed Muslims.

8 Deronjic killed elsewhere in Bratunac too, however he was not tried for

9 that.

10 The regime of Milo Djukanovic delivered a bus load of Muslims from

11 Montenegro to Deronjic. These are Muslims who fled during the war from

12 Bosnia to Montenegro. The Montenegrin police arrested them there, put

13 them onto a bus and delivered a bus load of such Muslims to Deronjic in

14 Bratunac and these Muslims were killed immediately. This is very reliable

15 information that I have.

16 Q. Do you know anything about the deal he made with the Prosecution?

17 A. I know he made a deal, and we haven't been talking since because I

18 think of him as a dishonourable man. He made a deal to be tried only for

19 Glogova and for all his other crimes in Bratunac to be disregarded, as

20 well as his participation in the execution of Muslims in Bratunac in 1995.

21 He also participated in the meeting where the execution was agreed and he

22 personally admitted to his participation in that meeting.

23 Q. Do you know anything about any other acts that he was suspected of

24 by the police?

25 A. He was suspected of murdering Zoran Zekic, a prominent Serbian

Page 43197

1 leader, at the beginning of the war. Zoran Zekic was killed from ambush

2 and it was presented to the public as something done by the Muslims. I

3 know that the police of Republika Srpska conducted an investigation and

4 that Deronjic was a suspect. However, he managed to avoid charges

5 successfully. Then he killed his -- his first wife, presenting that as a

6 suicide.

7 Q. Mr. Seselj, I would like to conclude one section, one segment of

8 your testimony, and it has to do with your volunteers again. You

9 mentioned, speaking of your volunteers, that some of them were in the

10 Territorial Defence which was under the control of the JNA. I would like

11 one thing cleared up. I'm not talking now about your volunteers in

12 particular. You said that in general in principle they were always under

13 the control of the JNA, but was it the case that the Territorial Defence

14 and all its units were under the effective control of the JNA? In other

15 words, were there any situations wherein certain parts of the Territorial

16 Defence acted independently?

17 A. I don't know whether it happened in practice, but according to the

18 law of the former Yugoslavia, the armed forces consisted of two parts; on

19 the one hand the army of Yugoslavia, and on the other hand the Territorial

20 Defence. And the law was very precise: When operations were conducted,

21 then the TO would be under the direct command of the army of Yugoslavia.

22 However, if on a temporarily occupied territory certain -- certain

23 territorial units were caught up and left behind, the commander of the

24 local army of Yugoslavia would have to subordinate himself to that TO

25 unit.

Page 43198

1 We are talking here about Western Slavonia. Territorial Defence

2 was active in Western Slavonia but it was headed by Colonel Trbojevic, who

3 was an active-duty officer of the JNA. I know that because I met him

4 there.

5 Q. Another witness here was General Vasiljevic who testified here on

6 the 14th of February, 2003. I think that's correct. There was discussion

7 about the composition of the top echelon of the JNA in 1991. Would you

8 please look at that composition.

9 A. Could you tell me where that is?

10 Q. I have only one copy with me, but in the war, in all the conflicts

11 involving the JNA in 1991, there were 16 leading generals, one Yugoslav,

12 two Serbs, eight Croats, two Slovenes, two Macedonians, one Muslim.

13 Could you please put this on the ELMO so you can read the

14 composition of the JNA leadership, which was said several times to have

15 been under my control or under the control of the authorities of the

16 Republic of Serbia. Could you please read this, after it is placed on the

17 ELMO, and tell me what you think about it. Have you ever seen this list

18 of the top leadership of the JNA in 1991?

19 A. I knew about this composition of the leadership. There was no

20 secret about it. There was Veljko Kadijevic, who declared himself as a

21 Yugoslav, and he did so because his father was Croat and mother Serbian or

22 the other way around. In any way, he was a child of a mix the marriage.

23 Blagoje Adzic, a Serb; Josip Greguric, Croat, deputy federal minister;

24 Stane Brovet, a Slovene, deputy federal minister; Mile Ruzinovski, a

25 Macedonian heading the first administration of the general staff; Konrad

Page 43199

1 Kolsek --

2 THE INTERPRETER: Would the witness please slow down.

3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Konrad Kolsek, Slovene, commander --

4 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Seselj. Mr. Seselj, I am not going to ask

5 you again. The interpreters -- you are speaking too fast. Presumably to

6 speak more slowly will not interfere with your marital relations. You

7 have to speak more slowly, otherwise we can't continue. Every two, three,

8 five minutes the interpreters are intervening to ask for you to speak more

9 slowly.

10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson, my marriage does not

11 depend on the speed of my speech but on the volume. If I turn down my

12 volume, I would lose in terms of my masculinity, but I will obey your

13 order.

14 JUDGE ROBINSON: [Previous translation continues]... explanation.

15 It is affecting the efficiency of the work.

16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I will speak very slowly,

17 Mr. Robinson.

18 Konrad Kolsek, a Slovene, commander of the north-western theatre

19 of war. Command in Zagreb.

20 Aleksandar Spirkovski, a Macedonian, head of the central --

21 central district command in Belgrade.

22 Andrija Silic, Croat, head of the staff of the central theatre of

23 war.

24 Zivota Avramovic, Serbian, head of the south-east district command

25 in Skopje.

Page 43200

1 Bozidar Grubisic, Croat, commander of the navy, later chairman of

2 the League of Communists of Yugoslavia in the JNA.

3 Anton Tus, Croat, heading the air force.

4 Zvonko Jurjevic, Croat, deputy head of the air force.

5 Ivan Radinovic, Croat, head of the centre of higher military

6 schools in Belgrade.

7 Ibrahim Alibegovic, Muslim, head of the war school. One had to

8 finish that war school if they wanted to be in the army.

9 Tomislav Bjondic, Croat, head of the Command Staff Academy.

10 Mate Pehar, Croat, head of the military academy in Belgrade.

11 And then you see a list of the ethnic composition: Yugoslav one,

12 Serbs two, eight Croats, two Slovenes, two Macedonians, one Muslim. That

13 was the composition, the structure of the top leadership of the JNA during

14 the war in 1991.

15 JUDGE ROBINSON: You see I just waited. I waited for the

16 interpreters to finish, the interpretation to conclude.

17 In terms of Mr. Milosevic's question, what does this list indicate

18 in relation to the question of the control that he might have had?

19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, this attests that

20 Mr. Milosevic had no control over the JNA and that the JNA was not in

21 Serbian hands, and there is no question of the JNA having implemented

22 Serbian policy. Serbia tried to preserve Yugoslavia and the JNA, and that

23 is why the JNA tried to preserve Yugoslavia. It refrained from conflict

24 as long as it could, and it did not fight until it was attacked. There

25 were attacks on military depots, on officers and soldiers, on the families

Page 43201

1 of officers. At the moment when the situation could no longer be

2 tolerated, the army went into action.

3 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]

4 Q. Let us move to another subject, Mr. Seselj. But before that, I

5 want to ask you one thing: Before you came here voluntarily, did you have

6 occasion to view this, to follow this trial that has been going on since

7 February 2002?

8 A. I followed the broadcast of these proceedings as far as my job

9 allowed me.

10 Q. In view of the main points of the Prosecution case, did you have

11 occasion to see or hear Mr. Nice making a claim that the leitmotif of all

12 my policies was to create a Greater Serbia?

13 A. That's impossible. That was never the policy of either you

14 personally or your party. Back in 1991, your ambitions were oriented

15 towards preserving Yugoslavia. Second, you didn't -- you were not in a

16 position to have any control over the JNA. However, the JNA had ambitions

17 to take over power. There was a session that was scheduled of the Central

18 Committee of the League of Communists of Yugoslavia in July 1989, and it

19 was the Communist Party of the army that insisted on that session, and it

20 was their attempt to take over power.

21 On the other hand, there was a group of generals, including, most

22 prominently, the chief of army security, General Vasiljevic, tried to

23 orchestrate at the very beginning of the war some crimes on both the

24 Serbian and the Croatian side and then used that as a basis to force

25 Western powers to support the JNA as the only guarantor of the survival of

Page 43202

1 the Yugoslav state, because the top leadership of the army saw you as an

2 obstacle to their ambitions.

3 For instance, the army leadership tried to orchestrate some crimes

4 on the Croatian side. Explosives were set at the Jewish cemetery and the

5 Jewish town hall in Zagreb. That was all orchestrated by this group led

6 by General Vasiljevic, and that was geared against Tudjman, who had

7 already made some anti-Semitic statements and said, for instance, that he

8 was not married to a Jewish woman and things like that.

9 He orchestrated some other --

10 JUDGE ROBINSON: I think you're going off course now. It is, in

11 any event, time for us to adjourn. We will resume tomorrow at 9.00 a.m.

12 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.44 p.m.,

13 to be reconvened on Thursday, the 25th day

14 of August, 2005, at 9.00 a.m.