1 Thursday, 10 November 2005
2 [Open session]
3 [The witness entered court]
4 [The accused entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.03 a.m.
6 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Nice, being sensitive to the health problems
7 of the witness, we'll sit at one-hour intervals, taking 20 minutes for the
8 break, for each break, and stopping at 2.00.
9 WITNESS: GEZA FARKAS [Resumed]
10 [Witness answered through interpreter]
11 Cross-examined by Mr. Nice: [Continued]
12 Q. Mr. Farkas, sensitive thus to your health issues, it's been
13 forecast that you're simply not available tomorrow --
14 A. I'm not getting any interpretation. No tone. Yes, thank you, I
15 can hear now.
16 Q. Then sensitive to your health issues, it's been forecast for some
17 time that you're not available tomorrow. Are you not available tomorrow
18 for health reasons, or for business reasons, or for social reasons?
19 A. For health reasons.
20 Q. You have medical appointments?
21 A. I do.
22 Q. I asked you yesterday when we closed about the movement of bodies
23 to Batajnica. Can you now please tell us what you were told about this,
24 when, and by whom.
25 A. Nothing was told to me in connection with that, and I said that I
1 heard about the movement -- that movement after the war, from the
3 Q. You didn't actually say that yesterday. I'll just check exactly
4 what you said. If I can find it quickly.
5 Press on. You only heard about it from the newspapers. Is that
6 your evidence?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. And what did you learn from the newspapers, then?
9 A. Well, I learnt that it was about some bodies which were taken from
10 a refrigeration truck from the Danube and were buried somewhere, and only
11 after those burials were they moved, and things like that.
12 Q. Did you make no inquiries into this?
13 A. Well, I had no reason to make inquiries. It didn't have anything
14 to do with the army, so I had no reason to.
15 Q. What about the work of the commission? Did the commission not
16 look into the movement of these bodies?
17 A. I've already told you that the commission didn't deal with
18 problems like that.
19 Q. Why not?
20 A. The problems of the commission had quite a different -- because it
21 had other tasks.
22 Q. Here you were, a very senior position, covering Kosovo, visiting
23 Kosovo, and this extraordinary allegation is raised about the movement of
24 bodies. No interest whatsoever in discovering what happened, none of you?
25 A. I didn't deal with Kosovo alone. I had the security situation of
1 the army to deal with on the whole territory of Yugoslavia, and this
2 particular case, after the war, that happened came under the competence
3 and authority of the Ministry of the Interior and not the army.
4 Q. Well, we had a lot of evidence about this, and just to tell you
5 one piece of it, in case you haven't, perhaps extraordinarily, picked this
6 up, one piece of it is that your wartime colleague Rade Markovic -- would
7 it be fair to describe him as a wartime colleague?
8 A. I don't know what you mean when you say "wartime colleague." We
9 were in the war, true. He did his work in the MUP; I did my work in the
10 army --
11 Q. [Previous translation continues] ...
12 A. -- and together -- what?
13 Q. Did you go to meetings together?
14 A. Yes. We would meet each other. I said last time that we attended
15 a meeting at Mr. Milosevic's office --
16 Q. Exactly.
17 A. -- on one occasion.
18 Q. Now, he signed a statement he may now seek to deny, but the
19 statement is before the Court and the Judges will decide where the truth
20 lies. He made a statement explaining how, at a meeting with this accused
21 as early as March of 1999, plans were laid to move bodies so that they
22 could not be discovered by The Hague Tribunal. Were you aware of that?
23 Exhibit 283, if the Court wants to remind itself.
24 Were you aware of that?
25 A. I don't know what Rade Markovic said or did not say to the Court
1 and to you. However, at that meeting and at no meeting that I attended
2 and that he attended was there any discussion of that.
3 Q. Since then, some 800 bodies have been found in mass graves in
4 Serbia, some at any event either on or very near to military
5 installations, Batajnica. With your military experience, would you accept
6 that digging up, transporting, and re-burying anybody, any single corpse,
7 is a serious exercise, and to do it for 800 bodies is a major exercise.
8 Would you accept that?
9 A. If that was done, then most probably you're right.
10 Q. And it had to be done before the arrival of the international
11 community, so it was done before June, and we have the dates from the
12 Danube truck and other things. For such an exercise to happen on the
13 territory of Kosovo would have demanded that vehicles moving the bodies
14 would have free passage, wouldn't it?
15 A. I don't know when that was done. I don't know of that date. And
16 as to vehicles, I really can't say whether it was a convoy, what was done.
17 The territory, both during the war -- supervision over the territory was
18 in the hands of the MUP, not the army.
19 Q. I'd like you to help us a little further with that. We've had one
20 or two Defence witnesses who have sort of approached the suggestion that
21 the international community moved the bodies or that Kosovo Albanians
22 moved the bodies. You tell us. That would be nonsense, wouldn't it, to
23 suggest that either the Kosovo Albanians were able to dig up 800 of their
24 own bodies, most or many of them with bullets in their heads, and drive
25 them up to Serbia. That's nonsense, isn't it? That couldn't happen.
1 A. I don't know about that. I just don't know who said that, under
2 what circumstances they made the statement. I really can't say whether it
3 happened or did not happen. If it happened, then of course it is not all
5 Q. Mr. Farkas, you've been brought here because we're told of your
6 supreme knowledge of security, KOS matters at the material time. Kosovo
7 is quite a small territory and you were there on your visit, so you know
8 what the security position was. Is any suggestion that the Kosovo
9 Albanians themselves dug up these bodies and drove them to Serbia simply
10 nonsensical because, apart from absurd in itself, also physically
11 impossible to achieve?
12 A. Probably not.
13 Q. You mean probably not possible?
14 A. Probably not possible for them to dig up and transport those
15 bodies to Serbia.
16 Q. Now, if we discount the suggestion insofar as anybody has made it
17 that NATO dug them up and moved them around, it follows that they were dug
18 up and moved before June of 1999, and I want you to listen very carefully
19 to the next question. Think about it before you answer it. Do you on
20 behalf of the army say that it's possible that this was done by the MUP on
21 their own, without the army knowing about it, or would that also simply
22 not be possible?
23 A. All I can say is that the army didn't know about that. Now, who
24 did it, whether NATO did it or the hypothesis that the Kosovo Albanians
25 did it, or anybody else who had an interest, if those bodies existed at
1 all, be found on the territory of central Serbia, the army and the
2 military security service, military organisation, had no knowledge of
4 Q. Well, on what basis did you say the military had no knowledge of
5 that? Let me tell you first of all what appears in Rade Markovic's
6 statement to those who were implicated. Stojiljkovic, Ilic, and he says
7 that Djordjevic, Obrad Stevanovic, Dragan -- Branko Djuric and Sreten
8 Lukic and Dragisa Dinic must have known.
9 Now, that's what he says. On what basis do you say the army was
10 not involved?
11 A. Well, all the generals or, rather, the individuals that you
12 enumerated here are members of the MUP.
13 Q. Precisely.
14 A. Therefore --
15 Q. Is it possible that it was all done by the MUP?
16 A. I don't know. I can't claim that one way or another because I
17 don't know.
18 Q. My last question on this topic, at least for the moment is this,
19 and I want you again to think about this carefully. You were there, you
20 know what the security position was, you know what the security position
21 at the borders of Kosovo and Serbia were. Is it remotely possible that
22 the MUP could have moved all these bodies in lorries without -- or had
23 them moved in lorries without the agreement of the army not to stop, not
24 to search, not to interfere with the lorries as they moved? Is that
25 remotely possible?
1 A. First of all, the army wasn't at the border between the province
2 and Serbia. The army was along the state borders. Therefore, at that
3 particular locality there was no supervision by the army of the territory
4 in-depth. The army was at the border, at the frontiers, and at their
5 positions to conduct combat operations in the defence of the country.
6 Now, what happened there, no soldier could have known that. They
7 were in quite another location.
8 Q. Now, of course the Court will decide what the history of these
9 bodies was and who is involved, but help me with this: If by your last
10 answer you're allowing that the MUP could have done this entirely without
11 the army's knowledge, responsive to a direction of this accused, what does
12 that tell us about the integration of the army and the MUP or the
13 separation of the army and the MUP?
14 A. Well, this is a very hypothetical question. One can allow,
15 hypothetically speaking, that NATO transported the bodies, or somebody
16 else. So I can't really answer hypotheticals like that. I say that I do
17 not know about it.
18 Q. [Previous translation continues] ...
19 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Nice, I agree with the witness. Please move
20 on to another question. It's inviting speculation.
21 MR. NICE: Well, it's a hypothetical question but I want to deal
22 with it with one other question.
23 Q. Looking back, Mr. Farkas, and thinking of the meetings that you
24 attended and of any other things that you saw, was there any evidence
25 coming to you that the accused dealt with the MUP privately or separately
1 and kept things from the army? Is there any experience you have that
2 would show that to be part of what he did?
3 A. Mr. Nice, once again you're asking a hypothetical question. I
4 have to guess and speculate what Mr. Milosevic did privately. I didn't
5 accompany him --
6 JUDGE ROBINSON: General, it's simply for you to say whether there
7 was any evidence coming to you that the accused dealt with the MUP
8 privately or separately. Did you have any evidence to that effect? This
9 is not speculation. Either you had it or you did not.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I didn't have it. No evidence.
11 MR. NICE:
12 Q. Thank you. Now, let's go back very briefly because I want to look
13 at events through your eyes and with your experience. A little bit, only
14 a few minutes. As you started to tell the learned Judges yesterday, you
15 had some prior KOS experience before 1999 when you were placed in the
16 position you were by this accused. You had some as a junior officer, and
17 then you had some between 1985, I think, and 1988; is that correct?
18 A. Yes, that's right. I was present in 1968 at Kosovo when the
19 demonstrations took place, those difficult, destructive first
20 demonstrations. And then later, from 1985 onwards, I was the chief of
21 security of the 2nd and now the 3rd Army.
22 Q. You started to mention Paracin, the incident at Paracin where one
23 man ran amok, which you say happened in 1987. Are you aware that in
24 respect of that incident the late one-time President Stambolic wrote in
25 his book how this was an event that was in some way a media show, was used
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 by the army for political purposes and was manipulated? Are you aware of
2 that in his book?
3 A. Mr. Nice, first of all, it was not one man who ran amok, lost
4 control and killed four soldiers while they were sleeping and seriously
5 wounded others. It was an organised group of six or, rather, seven
6 individuals who went into a terrorist operation in the barracks of Paracin
7 in a planned manner. And they were convicted by the military court, by
8 court-martial, and were given very serious sentences. They are already at
9 liberty now, Mr. Nice, and all the mothers can do of the deceased is to go
10 to visit the graves of their sons.
11 Now, as far as Mr. Stambolic is concerned, I really don't know
12 about that, what he wrote. I just can't believe that Mr. Stambolic could
13 have written that the army was speculating and manipulating with obvious
14 bodies and people who had obviously been wounded there.
15 Q. We'll pass through the next period of your history which takes us
16 through the first half of the 1990s, but can we -- no, not -- before we
17 do, as you explained to us yesterday, in the early 1990s, your role was
18 not in KOS but in -- I'm going to say civil defence. Have I got it right?
19 Territorial defence?
20 A. Yes, that's right. First of all, I worked in civilian structures,
21 which means I was secretary of the -- or provincial secretary for national
23 MR. NICE: My mistake. I distributed the wrong document. Could
24 we have that back, please. It's the next one in the bundle.
25 Q. If you would like to look at this document, please, Mr. Farkas.
1 It's a document of the 16th of November of 1991. It comes from the 1st
2 Military District Command, signed by Lieutenant General Stojanovic, and
3 based on a verbal request, it encloses a list of the units of the 1st
4 Military District with strength and technical equipment and a list of the
5 Socialist Republic of Serbia Territorial Defence units.
6 And if Mr. Prendergast can take us, when he's distributed it all,
7 to the table that looks like this. It's got page 11 at the bottom in the
8 English, Mr. Prendergast, and in the original it --
9 In the original for you, Mr. Farkas, it is a table that's headed
10 "Survey." Have you got a table described as "Survey"? With a reference
11 to Baranja. Have you found that? It's page 8 of 9, I think, at the
12 bottom right-hand corner.
13 Now, what this shows is the engagement of Territorial Defence
14 units of the Republic of Serbia in the composition of the 1st Military
15 District on the 15th of November of 1991. So this is within your term of
16 office on this topic and something of which you should be aware; correct?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And what we can see - we don't have to go through all of them - is
19 that all these Territorial Defence units of the Republic of Serbia were
20 working -- well, whereabouts? Where are these places on the right-hand
21 side; Banjska Kosa, Kopacki Rit, Kamenac, and so on? Where are they?
22 A. Those places are in Baranja.
23 Q. Yes. Over in what was and is Croatia; correct?
24 A. Mr. Nice, at the time it was Yugoslavia.
25 Q. Yes. And we can see, if we look down, places that will be
1 familiar to the Court. Dalj, for example, or, further down, Lovac; places
2 where crimes and serious crimes are said to have been committed. And then
3 right at the foot of the page, Vukovar.
4 So these Territorial Defence units of Serbia were fighting in
5 places where it is said crimes were committed up and until the end of
6 November 1991; correct?
7 A. Well, looking at it time-wise, I don't know what period it was,
8 exactly, whether those units were exactly in those locations where quite
9 obviously crimes had been committed, so I can't say. But, yes, these
10 units were organised and prepared and were within the composition of the
11 army of Yugoslavia, and they were deployed later in combat.
12 Q. And who sent them there? What was the mechanism by which Serbian
13 Territorial Defence units were sent to, for example, Lovac or Dalj or
14 anything like that?
15 A. On the basis of the total national defence law and a decision by
16 the federal secretary of national defence, who was in charge and had the
17 authority to determine and organise the army and Territorial Defence.
18 MR. NICE: No, this is a new exhibit. May we have this produced,
19 please, as an exhibit?
20 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes.
21 JUDGE BONOMY: What is it?
22 MR. NICE: Sorry. It's a report. Sorry, I'll go back to it and
23 read it out to you again.
24 It comes from the 1st Military District Command, and it responds
25 to a verbal request and provides a list of the units of the military
1 district by numerical strength and personnel, together with a list of the
2 Republic of Serbia Territorial Defence units. It's signed by the Chief of
3 Staff, Lieutenant General Vladimir Stojanovic.
4 Q. So can you just explain from your understanding of the document,
5 please, Mr. Farkas, what this document is if what I've read out isn't
6 self-explanatory? What was this document?
7 A. This is an overview. It's a military document. And from this
8 overview we see which units from the Territorial Defence were sent where
9 with which numerical strength. I can't see the signature of Colonel
10 General -- oh, yes. It is here.
11 Q. Incidentally, since I've been brought back to the document and
12 happy just to ask one more question, where we see the presence of these
13 Territorial Defence units functioning in places like Dalj or Lovac, would
14 there exist somewhere reports back, written reports back of what they did
15 over time on these deployments?
16 A. These units were assigned to regular units within the JNA, and
17 quite naturally there were combat reports reflecting all the activities
18 that took place in that territory over a certain time.
19 I see now from this document that it is the first theatre of war,
20 and it's practically the General Staff of the armed forces of Yugoslavia
21 that sent this report.
22 Q. How easy should it be for the Office of the Prosecutor to get
23 reports of the kind you say exist from these various territorial units if
24 we wish to? Should they be readily available?
25 A. First of all, we don't have TO reports, and I can't provide them
1 because such reports did not come to the command of the Territorial
2 Defence. If such reports do exist, then they could possibly be obtained
3 from the archives of the army of Yugoslavia.
4 Q. Your last answer I thought was that written reports in fact would
5 exist. You now say, "We don't have Territorial Defence reports." Well,
6 surely the Territorial Defence units, like any other military unit, would
7 provide records and reports of what they did, or are you saying something
8 different about the Territorial Defence?
9 A. No, I'm not saying something different, but they were incorporated
10 into the VJ and the Territorial Defence organisation and competencies
11 ceased over those units when they were incorporated into the VJ. So all
12 their combat reports and the combat engagement of these units was within
13 the purview of the VJ at that time. The TO only conducted mobilisation,
14 preparation, and training, after which they were incorporated into the
15 regular units of the VJ.
16 MR. NICE: Well, Your Honours, I'm not sure, in light of the last
17 answer, whether our request for assistance will have covered the reporting
18 back of those units that we now know from this comparatively recently
19 obtained document were functioning in places that feature in the Croatian
20 indictment. We'll check. And if they aren't -- if they are covered,
21 we'll either repeat the request or press by other means for production.
22 Alternatively, we'll make fresh requests now that we know of the
23 deployment of those forces.
24 Q. You changed jobs in 1995?
25 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, I had said it will be admitted.
1 MR. NICE: I'm sorry, yes. Thank you very much.
2 THE REGISTRAR: That will be 931.
3 MR. NICE:
4 Q. You changed jobs in 1995, but before 1995 the 30th and 40th
5 Personnel Centres had come into being, hadn't they?
6 A. Yes. I think they came into being at that time, but I have no
7 specific knowledge about them.
8 Q. When did -- well, what was your job again after 1995? Remind the
10 A. In 1995, I was assistant federal minister of defence in charge of
11 civilian defence.
12 Q. Did you never have occasion to deal with officers who were
13 deployed in Bosnia or who expressed a desire to be deployed in Bosnia or
14 who were compelled to be deployed in Bosnia?
15 A. No. At that time, as I said, I was assistant defence minister for
16 civilian defence. I had no such information at the time, and in view of
17 my position I was not able to deal with such problems.
18 Q. You say you have no specific knowledge of the 30th and 40th
19 Personnel Centres. What knowledge do you have of them?
20 A. The little I know is that after the break-up of Yugoslavia, a
21 great number of such personnel of the VJ, together with their families,
22 came to the territory of Serbia. They had to be provided for in terms of
23 social welfare and health insurance and assigned to health institutions
24 that would cater to them. And those centres were organised in order to
25 help accommodate those families whose husbands and fathers remained back
1 in the territories of Yugoslavia that had seceded, in Bosnia and Croatia.
2 Q. And that's really your understanding of these two bodies, is it;
3 entirely innocent in every particular?
4 A. I did not understand you.
5 Q. Nothing sinister, nothing that needed to be protected, nothing
6 needed to be secret about either of these bodies.
7 A. Well, it couldn't be secret because women and children came to
8 those institutions to receive assistance, receive salaries, medical books
9 to be presented. I don't know what could possibly be secret about it. It
10 had its location, and those families came to resolve their problems there.
11 Q. Can we have number 32, please.
12 I want to deal with this problem, although in a sense I'm moving
13 forward in time and picking up on your role as a member of the Commission
14 for Cooperation.
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson.
16 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Milosevic.
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I was reluctant to interrupt because
18 maybe it's not that important, but certain answers given by the general
19 are missing from the transcript. When Mr. Nice asked him whether he was
20 -- whether it was secret, the general answered, "What could be secret
21 about it?" It says, "I did not understand you." There was another
22 question by Mr. Nice mentioning Croatia, whereas Croatia isn't mentioned.
23 It's in the transcript.
24 I would like you to notify the Registry of this, because I am
25 hesitant to warn of -- about mistakes and errors in the transcripts, and I
1 have been asking for two years for an electronic record, and I have a good
2 reason to do that.
3 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: When the witness said, "I
4 did not understand you," he really said, "I did not understand you," and
5 that's because he misheard the B/C/S interpreter. He didn't understand
6 the word "innocent." He understood it to mean something completely
8 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you. There is also on the transcript
9 coming from the witness the answer, "I don't know what could possibly be
10 secret about it," Mr. Milosevic, but you may be right in relation to the
11 other matters, subject to what the interpreter just said. But we take
12 note of the concerns that you have expressed.
13 Croatia -- Judge Bonomy says that there is a reference to Croatia
14 as well.
15 Yes, Mr. Nice.
16 MR. NICE:
17 Q. Can we look at these documents which are collected together quite
18 rapidly, and going through them page by page. The first page of this
19 document dated the 20th of October, 2003, the Ministry of the Interior and
20 to Deputy Minister Milic says: "Please find attached the report on the
21 currency security situation," and it's signed by Goran Zivaljevic. And
22 the next page says: "According to available information, the bringing of
23 an indictment ... against Lukic ... has caused discontent amongst members
24 of the Republic of Serbia MUP ..."
25 And then it goes on to deal with various other matters, and says:
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 "... the possibility that reaction of the aforementioned police structure
2 would be directed at disputing the clearly defined obligations of Serbia
3 and Montenegro towards the International Criminal Court should not be
5 Then we have on the following page - just look at this - a
6 two-page document from Vladimir Djeric, deputy minister of the interior of
7 the Republic of Serbia, Nenad Milic: Further to consultations on the
8 instigation of proceedings ... and deals with various matters.
9 And then, over the page, he deals with matters of jurisdiction and
10 other matters. I'm sorry. He provides a legal opinion. Perhaps we
11 needn't trouble with that too much. But as part of the same documentation
12 dated the 29th of October - this is a collection of documentation coming
13 to the Prosecution - we have this: 29th of October, 2003, "To: National
14 Council for the Cooperation of Serbia and Montenegro with The Hague
15 Tribunal. Esteemed gentlemen."
16 Now, is this the form of address that would be used for the
17 commission of which you were a member?
18 A. First of all, Mr. Nice, these documents were created on the 29th
19 October, 2003. The previous one a little earlier. At that time, the
20 commission was no longer in existence. It was disbanded, I think at your
21 request as well, sometime in April 2003. So I never had any opportunity
22 to familiarise myself with these documents, and I can't tell you anything
23 about them. We simply no longer had any physical access to the premises.
24 And these documents were created long, long after the entire commission
25 terminated its work. I didn't read any of these documents. I didn't know
1 the mechanism used to address somebody, who to address, or whatever.
2 Q. To which body, if not to your body or its successor body, could it
3 be properly addressed? It comes from lawyers and it goes to the National
4 Council for the Cooperation of Serbia and Montenegro with The Hague
6 A. Well, after the adoption of the law on which the commission had
7 insisted, this commission that was later disbanded had first raised the
8 issue of urgent adoption of a law on cooperation with the ICTY. After the
9 law was adopted, this National Council, this national commission, was
10 established to deal with issues of cooperation. That's as far as I know.
11 JUDGE ROBINSON: Colonel. Colonel, can you just clarify something
12 for me. General, rather. You say that the commission was disbanded "at
13 your request" sometime in April 2003. Whose request is that? At whose
14 request was it disbanded?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I think at the request and after an
16 invention by Mr. Nice. That's what I heard. I'm not sure of it, however.
17 I think it was after an intervention by Mr. Nice that Mr. Tadic did it
18 practically overnight. After a night session in Montenegro of the
19 council, he came back to Belgrade and it was already closed. We could no
20 longer enter the premises.
21 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. Thank you.
22 MR. NICE:
23 Q. One more question arising from these documents, please. In the
24 English, Mr. Prendergast, if you could take us to page 10.
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson.
1 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic.
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I really don't know what these
3 documents have to do with this witness. It makes no sense to abuse his
4 time with these questions, just like the refrigerator truck. The question
5 to him is to who it was addressed. It is said exactly who wrote it and
6 who -- to whom it was addressed. It was provided by the Chief of General
7 Staff. It has nothing to do with the witness. It's pure waste of time.
8 JUDGE ROBINSON: Well, let us hear the questions and the answers,
9 Mr. Milosevic, and then we'll make a determination.
10 MR. NICE:
11 Q. Page 10 of 14 in the English and page 7 in the B/C/S, Mr. Farkas,
12 something headed "Conclusion."
13 Now, the Court will remember, or can be reminded, that the OTP was
14 provided with a document relating to the 30th Personnel Centre -- the 30th
15 and 40th Personnel Centres by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. It's in
16 evidence, it's Exhibit 927, and the issues between the parties is --
17 include as to whether that is a full or entirely self-serving version of
19 Now this document, Mr. Farkas, says at the conclusion, number 6:
20 "Submission of the documentation regarding the 30th Personnel Centre,
21 following requests of the ICTY Office of the Prosecutor, numbers 85 and
23 And it goes on at the top of the next page, please.
24 "The Ministry of Defence of Serbia and Montenegro has submitted to
25 the National Council the two documents that were requested by means of the
1 ICTY motions for cooperation ...
2 "1. Information regarding the 30th Personnel Centre, without
3 date and number." And Your Honours, that accords with Exhibit 927.
4 And then if you look at the bottom of this page in English and if
5 you, Mr. Farkas, go on to about three more paragraphs, it says this:
6 "However, by the Decision of the ICTY Trial Chamber in the case of ...
7 Milosevic ... on the 12th of June, the request of the Office of the
8 Prosecutor was granted and Serbia and Montenegro was instructed to submit
9 the information on the 30th Personnel Centre within two months, as well as
10 the Order by the Chief of the Yugoslav Army General Staff on Establishing
11 the 30th and 40th Personnel Centres.
12 "The aforementioned documents are marked 'military secret' ..."
13 And then this: "The Team of Experts has examined these documents
14 with regard to the position of the SCG in lawsuits before the
15 International Court of Justice and has assessed them as follows:
16 "The Order on Establishing the 30th and 40th Personnel Centre
17 contains a minimum information regarding military formation and in itself
18 does not indicate the responsibilities of these Centres. It does not
19 contain data which could harm the position of SCG in the lawsuit before
20 the International Court of Justice.
21 "The information on the 30th Personnel Centre identifies the
22 responsibilities very carefully and in general terms, at the same time
23 advocating the political standpoints of the Yugoslav People's Army defence
24 and its role in BiH. And it does not contain data that could harm the
25 position of the SCG in the lawsuit before the International Court of
2 "A certain number of exhibits that refer to the 30th and 40th
3 Personnel Centres have so far been presented in the proceedings before the
4 ICTY. The most important of them are the testimony of ... Lilic and the
5 statement of protected witness ... The two documents treated in this
6 assessment do not contain anything that has not already been presented in
7 proceedings before the ICTY ..."
8 Now, looking back at that and seeing that this is a reflection of
9 what the team of experts prepared and that you were on the commission, is
10 it right that the material information provided to us - and it's now our
11 Exhibit 927 - was purposefully as limited as possible in its explanation
12 of what the 30th and 40th Personnel Centres did? Do you remember this?
13 A. Mr. Nice --
14 JUDGE ROBINSON: Witness, are you in a position to say whether the
15 information was purposely -- purposefully as limited as possible in its
16 explanation of what the 30th and 40th Personnel Centres did? Are you in a
17 position to answer that question?
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm simply not in a position. I
19 have already said that I wasn't part of the expert team. I worked on the
20 commission. This is expert team material, and I didn't even manage to
21 find the right passages, Mr. Nice spoke so fast. However, this document
22 was created on the 29th of October, 2003, and I didn't participate in the
23 development of any documents as part of the expert team, and I don't know
24 anything about them.
25 MR. NICE:
1 Q. One last question on this, Mr. Farkas. The expert team that you
2 described yesterday and that has played a role in the presentation of
3 material, either direct to the Office of the Prosecutor or via witnesses
4 who have responded to invitations to cooperate with the commission, that
5 expert team's material is not before us. Can you tell us how we can find
6 and get our hands on what the expert team did?
7 A. That's another thing I said yesterday. The expert team, first of
8 all, did not complete its work due to an intervention that terminated
9 their work. And they did not deal with issues in the way you described.
10 They analysed and studied combat activities, combat actions. So they had
11 a complex approach to past combat activities. And this suggestion that
12 they worked exclusively in the direction that you describe is not
13 appropriate, is not correct.
14 That's all I can say about the work of the expert team in which I
15 did not participate for a single hour.
16 MR. NICE: Well, Your Honours, we will do our best to find what we
17 can from the expert team, given the way it turns up. Yes. And, Your
18 Honours, as to any suggestion that the Prosecution had any involvement in
19 Minister Tadic's decision to abolish this commission, there is no
20 acknowledgement of that. That, I understand, is what is being suggested.
21 There is no acceptance that there is any truth in that at all, of course.
22 Q. We move on in time then from the time when the 30th and 40th
23 Personnel Centres came into being. You changed jobs. Just as a matter of
24 history, because it relates to what happens to you, in my suggestion, it's
25 right, isn't it, and do you recall this, that at Dayton it was the accused
1 - if you know this, and if you don't, say so - it was the accused who
2 kept Kosovo off the agenda. Kosovo was kept away from international
3 resolution at the time of Dayton. Do you know that?
4 A. I don't know that.
5 Q. Very well. I'm going to deal with a topic in 1998 a little later,
6 but -- a particular topic, but just dealing with your appointment: In
7 1998, we find the departure of his -- well, from -- from the group around
8 this accused, we find the departure of Perisic and of Stanisic. Are you
9 aware, respectively, that Perisic went, inter alia, amongst other reasons,
10 because of his determination that the process of dealing with Kosovo
11 should be dealt with -- should be a lawful one, with the imposition of a
12 state of emergency? Are you aware of that as one of the reasons why
13 Perisic went?
14 A. I didn't know for what reasons he left. I was working outside of
15 the army at that time, on the civilian defence, and I have no knowledge of
16 the reasons for those decisions.
17 Q. Stanisic went as well. What was the reason for his going?
18 A. I don't know.
19 Q. Was it because he, along with others, were minded to have the
20 Kosovo problem dealt with by internationals and not anxious for it to be
21 dealt with just internally by Serbia?
22 A. Mr. Nice, I don't know. At that time, I was intensively involved
23 in preparing the defence plan, and I only heard of such personnel changes
24 in the General Staff. Of course I heard that they took place, but as to
25 the reasons behind the changes in the top echelons of the army and the
1 state authorities, I don't know.
2 At our meetings with the federal defence minister, we discussed
3 completely different issues. I don't know about those issues.
4 Q. Well, let's come to your --
5 A. I just know that these people left.
6 Q. Let's come to your own appointment. Is it right that you'd been a
7 school friend of Ojdanic?
8 A. Yes. Yes, that is right.
9 Q. Is it right that you were a supporter of JUL, the political party
10 of the accused's wife, Mrs. Milosevic?
11 A. Well, that's not correct. I did not play any kind of role by way
12 of supporting anyone in that party or that party. After the break-up of
13 Yugoslavia, after Yugoslavia fell apart, I no longer belonged to any
14 party. Previously I had been a member of the League of Communists of
15 Yugoslavia, but after that, I did not belong to a single party.
16 Q. You told us yesterday first of a meeting that you say preceded
17 your appointment, about a month before your appointment, but the precise
18 circumstances of your appointment perhaps haven't emerged. Dimitrijevic
19 was a very experienced, very senior KOS officer, and he was removed from
20 office just before the conflict with NATO began, wasn't he?
21 A. I know Mr. Dimitrijevic. For awhile he was my subordinate in the
22 security service. I have a high regard for him and his intellectual
23 capacities and experience in the security service. I don't know when I
24 attended a meeting in the president's office. The president said to me in
25 response to my question, "Where is Aco Dimitrijevic going to go?" He said
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 to me that he would be assistant federal minister of defence, to bring
2 together the entire subject matter of security at the level of all of
3 Yugoslavia. And that's what happened, because during the first days of
4 the war I reported to him and to the federal minister. He had a role
5 there and, in a shelter, I, as chief of security of the military, reported
6 to the federal ministry in the presence of Aco Dimitrijevic.
7 Q. He was effectively sidelined. And was the reason that he was
8 sidelined because he'd published an article proposing international
9 resolution of the Kosovo problem and that this wasn't palatable to the
11 A. I'm not aware of that article. I haven't read the article. Where
12 was it published?
13 Q. In Vojska, a military magazine, I think.
14 A. I don't know.
15 Q. And then finally -- I see the time; the Court may be looking for a
16 time to break -- but finally, the position is this, and I must suggest to
17 you, you were appointed by this accused because he knew you would do
18 anything he wanted. You would always be his yes-man. And you were
19 appointed notwithstanding the fact that you didn't have great recent KOS
20 experience, and because of that, the strong and sober Vasiljevic who had
21 once been your superior was brought in as your deputy, you being there to
22 do what was wanted and to be the head of the department. Is that about
24 A. That's not right, Mr. Nice. That's not right at all. First of
25 all, I'm not that kind of person that could be called a yes-man. The
1 security service does its work honestly. That's the way we've been
2 trained, educated. These questions of yours are simply wrong, and your
3 assertions are wrong. And we weren't talking about Aco Vasiljevic, we
4 were talking about Aco Dimitrijevic. Perhaps I misunderstood what you
5 were saying.
6 Q. Just to remind the Judges, Vasiljevic had, many years before, been
7 your superior. He then lost office, went to prison, and was asked to come
8 back as your deputy in 1999. When you took office in 1999, you took over
9 from Dimitrijevic. Isn't that correct?
10 A. Yes, Dimitrijevic.
11 MR. KAY: Just one matter. Can we have an answer to the
12 proposition that was put whether he was effectively sidelined, which was
13 the purpose of a question about five questions ago from the Prosecutor,
14 because otherwise, we just get comment rather than questions.
15 JUDGE ROBINSON: Who was sidelined?
16 MR. NICE: Dimitrijevic was sidelined by his movement to a
17 ministerial position.
18 JUDGE ROBINSON: Witness?
19 JUDGE BONOMY: I thought it had been answered, Mr. Kay, and
20 Mr. Nice proceeded, regardless, to reiterate the proposition.
21 MR. KAY: Shall we sort it out?
22 JUDGE ROBINSON: Witness, what is your answer to that?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, that was not my impression,
24 that he had been sidelined. He was appointed assistant minister of
25 defence to bring together the entire subject matter of security throughout
1 Yugoslavia. So that position was more complex than the one I held, that
2 is to say being chief of security of the army of Yugoslavia. That is
3 broader than the position I held. So I really don't see that he had been
5 JUDGE ROBINSON: Just one more matter before we break. Was
6 Vasiljevic your superior at some time?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] During a short period of time, very
8 short period of time. Precisely at the moment when I left the service.
9 That is in the 1990s. Perhaps it was 1989, for a few months. That's when
10 I headed the security of the first theatre of war, and he was chief of the
11 security administration.
12 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Nice, are you finished with your
13 cross-examination? We're going to take a break now.
14 MR. NICE: Not finished with it, but I've finished with this
16 JUDGE ROBINSON: This topic. We'll break for 20 minutes.
17 --- Recess taken at 10.06 a.m.
18 --- On resuming at 10.28 a.m.
19 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Nice, please continue.
20 MR. NICE: Your Honours, I should inform you that as soon as we
21 became aware of the existence of the expert committee or commission or
22 whatever it is associated with or part of the VJ commission, we made a
23 request for all its reports. Nothing has been provided.
24 Q. Mr. Farkas, in 1998, of course you hadn't assumed your --
25 JUDGE BONOMY: Sorry. Before you move on, my understanding of
1 this is certainly clearer, having heard this witness, that there are two
2 separate bodies. There is a commission which -- and he's described its
3 purpose, and there's also a committee of experts, and it may be that the
4 rather loose language that's been used in any attempt to get information
5 won't have assisted. It may have been that your knowledge wasn't
6 sufficient before to be specific enough, I don't know. But have you not
7 learned more from his evidence than you knew before?
8 MR. NICE: We've heard more and if I have time I'll take you
9 through more of the VJ commission documents that we've got, because -- and
10 of course it's always possible, if undesirable, that the government would
11 take a technical point when knowing perfectly well what we wanted and give
12 us a refusal, but we'll do our best because I can see that -- it seems to
13 me it's important.
14 Q. Going back to 1998, Mr. Farkas, of course you hadn't taken on your
15 KOS job but nevertheless you knew what was going on in Kosovo, and you
16 knew something about prosecutions, I suggest. Was, to your knowledge, any
17 VJ officer investigated or prosecuted for excessive use of force in
18 dealing with people described as terrorists in 1998?
19 A. In that year, 1998, I was not in a position to follow the
20 situation in the army because I was in the Ministry of Defence. So at
21 that time there were still military courts that existed, and they went
22 through regular channels, through these military courts. So I don't know
23 whether proceedings were initiated or not. I did not have information to
24 that effect.
25 Q. For example, we've had evidence from Lord Ashdown of tanks firing
1 at civilian properties. We've had evidence from witnesses, K32, about
2 General Delic, as he now is, clearing civilians from their houses with no
4 Now, matters like that, if they happened in 1998 - it will be for
5 the Court to decide - to your knowledge there were no trials for those
6 sorts of activities, were there? You don't know of any.
7 A. Whether tanks were used to expel the Albanian inhabitants in the
8 area is something that I don't know. Perhaps the person who could see all
9 of that should testify about that. I don't know about trials. I told you
10 that I was very seriously involved --
11 Q. And I'm going to suggest to you that one of the reasons was that
12 -- that there was no trials is something that is known to you, and that
13 is that by 1998 there was already a determination to use whatever force on
14 behalf of the Serbs in Kosovo was possible. And the reason you know about
15 it is because you were engaged in arming the non-military Serbs in Kosovo.
16 Do you accept that you were engaged in arming the non-military Serbs in
18 A. I do not accept that. I did not take part in any arming. Just a
19 moment, please. According to the establishment and according to the
20 document that you saw here, all these units that were established within
21 the Ministry of Defence were entitled to a certain quantity of weapons.
22 This was the way it was prescribed in conventions too. So that is the
23 only kind that took place. As far as I know, it was the end of 1998, and
24 weapons went to military warehouses.
25 So I was not involved in any special arming of Serbs. I realised
1 part of the defence plan.
2 Q. Two documents, first existing 391, tab 21, for you and for the
3 overhead projector, at least, and for the accused.
4 You've spoken of arming of units. This is a document, as we shall
5 see when it's on the overhead projector, "Ministry of Defence, Federal
6 Ministry of Defence, area organ of the Republic of Serbia, Pristina
7 Defence Administration," and it's dated the 21st of May, of 1998. It goes
8 to departments and sections for defence. And under the order, if you'd be
9 good enough, Mr. Prendergast, it says this: "Chiefs of departments and
10 heads of sections shall immediately establish contacts with municipal
11 leaders and ensure that lists are compiled for the purpose of arming of
12 the population -" not arming of units, arming of the population - "which
13 will be carried out by the Federal Ministry of Defence through its
14 organisational units throughout the territory. Take care to ensure that
15 those whose wartime duty station is in units of the VJ units -" over the
16 page - "are not included in the list of the issue of weapons since they
17 will be issued them in their wartime units ..."
18 If, just to save time, we go over a couple of paragraphs to number
19 4: "Carry out the above activities in a short period of time and in
20 strict discretion. Reveal the contents of this Order only to those
21 participating directly in activities on the execution of this task."
22 And perhaps the second half of paragraph 5, Mr. Prendergast:
23 "In carrying out this task, direct the bulk of activities towards
24 the protection of the population of settlements in which Serbs and
25 Montenegrins are populations in a minority and are increasingly becoming
1 targets of attacks by Albanian terrorists."
2 So that's, as it were, to give some justification, but the reality
3 is that what was happening is that Serb civilians were being armed by the
4 Ministry of Defence in secret. Is that right?
5 A. That's not right. Serb civilians were not being secretly armed.
6 I've already said that arming was taking place in accordance with the
7 establishment, according to the decision of the Federal Ministry of
8 Defence based on the law on national defence establishing units of civil
9 defence. These also had six categories, depending on the situation on the
10 territory involved, depending on which population was more massive.
11 So on this basis, there is a certain establishment and then a
12 certain quantity of weapons is provided to the military warehouses in the
14 It's a very poor photocopy, so I could not follow everything that
15 you enumerated, so could you please be so kind as to tell me where this is
16 stated explicitly where only Serbs are being armed? Could you please tell
17 me that?
18 Q. Tell me, it's by all means --
19 A. Discretely, at that, as you said.
20 Q. There's the passage that you can find at paragraph 4 which refers
21 to discretion, and then if you go to the second half of paragraph 5, which
22 I hope is legible -- it's the second paragraph so it picks up on the top
23 of the second page, I think, and it's the -- it's the paragraph or
24 subparagraph that says, "In carrying out this task .." Have you found
25 that, that part of the paragraph? "In carrying out this task, direct the
1 bulk of activities towards the population of settlements in which the
2 Serbs and Montenegrins are populations in a minority ..."
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Pretty clear. This was arming of Serbs. Wasn't it?
5 A. Yes. Well, that's what's written there. This order or, rather,
6 this document is from the regional organ for Pristina, signed by Petar
7 Ilic. All of this has to be looked at in context. Outside the
8 establishment units, no weapons could be obtained, those that were defined
9 by the order of the minister of defence. So in these villages we had
10 those problems, namely that the Albanians were armed, and they did not
11 respond to any calls of the civilian defence or the army, whereas these
12 people were being attacked non-stop. And that part of the civilian
13 population that responded to the calls, the regular calls, they were
15 Q. Here, Mr. Farkas, before we turn to the next document, that you
16 now are accepting that Serb civilians were armed. Am I right?
17 A. They were within the establishment units of the civilian defence.
18 The civilian defence units. And according to establishment, that was
19 envisaged. Those who responded to these calls, according to that
20 establishment, received weapons.
21 Q. And to come back to my earlier point when I asked you questions
22 about crimes committed by, for example, Delic, if you arm a local
23 population and that local population commits offences -- not commits
24 offences, commits crimes, kills people with its arms, it's very difficult
25 then, isn't it, to charge them with criminal offences?
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 Can you point us -- and that's a suggestion to you. It's very
2 difficult to charge them if you've armed them. Do you accept that?
3 A. I don't know what crimes were committed by Delic, if I understood
4 you correctly. As far as I know, Delic is a general of the army of
5 Yugoslavia. I'm not aware of any crimes that he had committed. However,
6 I claim to you that there were formations, units consisting of a definite
7 number of people and then these people who responded according to that
8 establishment, received weapons, and they were in the system. That is to
9 say they were subjected to all sanctions as the case is, in the MUP and
10 the military for any crimes that may be committed.
11 MR. NICE: Just one minute, Your Honour.
12 [Prosecution confer]
13 MR. NICE: The Court will have noted the fact that I -- the Court,
14 and indeed the witness, will have noted the passage I have read summarised
15 the groups that weren't to be armed because they already had arms coming
16 to them another way.
17 JUDGE KWON: Mr. Nice, the transcript says that the exhibit number
18 of this document is 391, tab 21. Is it not 319?
19 MR. NICE: Just give me one minute.
20 JUDGE KWON: Out of Mr. Coo's binder.
21 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, it is.
22 JUDGE KWON: It should be 319, tab 21.
23 MR. NICE: Tab 319, tab 21, is what I have written down and I
24 should have read out. If I didn't, it's my mistake.
25 Q. Now, on the same topic, Mr. Farkas, will you look at another
1 document, also an existing exhibit. It's tab 248, and this picks the
2 story up a little later in 1998 and was the subject of evidence by Shukri
3 Aliu, and it deals with the position of civil protection units, of which
4 you have spoken. Before we look at the documents, would you accept that
5 the civil protection units were themselves armed? Do you accept that?
6 A. The units of the civil defence were not fully armed. Only in
7 those areas where they had been mobilised. That is to say that not all
8 units in all parts of Yugoslavia were armed. What is said here is what
9 applied to all of Yugoslavia. So this document pertains only to those
10 areas, those municipalities where people had been mobilised.
11 Q. Well, let's look --
12 A. And that is elderly people for the most part.
13 Q. This comes from Pristina and it goes to you personally, if we can
14 see that on the screen. A little bit -- not looking at the right part of
15 it, I think. Next page. There we are. Top of the page. It comes from
16 the Pristina area organ of the Republic of Serbia defence administration.
17 It goes to you personally, and it says: "In connection with the requests
18 from your telex -" number given - "of October 1998, we would like to
19 inform you of the following:
20 "In our communication -" as identified - "we requested the
21 command of the 3rd Army to secure for us arms and ammunition for all the
22 units that are being formed and developed by the departments and sections
23 on the territory of Kosovo and Metohija." And then it says, "As follows,"
24 and it gives some figures.
25 So all the units that are being formed and developed by the
1 departments are to be armed. Yes?
2 A. Yes, that's what's written here.
3 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... end of the document and the
4 send page in the English and the same page for you. The last paragraph
5 is: "We would point out that further activities regarding the taking out,
6 distribution, and individual issue of weapons will depend exclusively on
7 your orders should the mobilisation plans that have been drawn up and
8 verified by the Defence Department ... be activated."
9 So you were the person who was going to activate -- you were going
10 to arm these people and activate the process of their arming in due course
11 or then. What was the position? What did you do?
12 A. First of all, the process of activation could only have gone
13 through me. The decision on mobilisation of certain structures is passed
14 by the federal government. So according to the decision of the federal
15 government on the activation of certain bodies of the civil defence, these
16 weapons could have been distributed through me, through my orders further
17 on to these people.
18 Secondly, what it says here individually, you see here in this
19 second paragraph, this longer paragraph where all the figures are referred
20 to, those are the units of the civil defence, the military conscripts, the
21 communication signals corps, and also the monitoring and recording. These
22 are regular units of the Ministry of Defence that are throughout the
23 territory. So most weapons went to them, envisaged by the establishment,
24 clearly defined. These are signals units that develop communication
25 throughout the territory. They ensure communications so that civilian
1 structures could also issue their commands, and they had to be armed like
2 members of the civilian defence, and also that part that had been
4 This had individually been distributed because as they performed
5 their functions in offices or elsewhere they were subjected to attacks.
6 Also, members of the Ministry of the Interior were supposed to be given
7 weapons and they were to keep these weapons in safe boxes.
8 Q. Focusing as I am through your evidence on the Civil Protection
9 Units for that's where your interests lay at this time, Mr. Aliu was asked
10 specifically whether all such units were armed and he said they were. He
11 was also asked whether that was for all ethnic groups or not, and he
12 explained that no Albanians received weapons under this project or plan.
13 Indeed, they'd been disarmed and that they were at risk of heavy penalty
14 if they had arms. So that what we see here, under your own orders, was a
15 scheme to arm Serbs and not Albanians. That's the evidence. Do you
16 accept it?
17 A. Mr. Ali Shukrija, he was an employee or, rather, worked in the
18 structural defence of Pristina, and four or five days before the
19 aggression, he deserted from his unit. He was the last Albanian to leave
20 the structures of defence. He deserted or, rather, he asked for furlough,
21 for leave. He went on leave and never returned. So that he, being in
22 charge of civilian defence or protection and within that civilian
23 protection for evacuation matters, he deserted. And the deputy federal
24 minister at some point in time dismissed him formally from --
25 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... please.
1 A. So at that time --
2 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... right that it was only the
3 Serbs who were armed? That's his evidence.
4 A. That's his evidence. We -- I had previously ordered that all
5 members who were in the offices and working in the field be distributed
6 weapons. I was not able to or nobody was able to provide him with weapons
7 because he fled. He left. He deserted. And also similarly, the Kosovo
8 Albanians did not respond to the call-up, so the weapons could not have
9 been distributed to them. Those who did respond were given weapons, were
10 issued weapons. I don't know whether this was because of pressure or --
11 by the KLA on them, but they didn't dare or didn't wish to respond to our
12 calls for weapons distribution. So the weapons were distributed to those
13 who did respond and came in.
14 Q. Are you able to provide a list or point us to a list of -- of
15 Albanian recipients of arms under this order of yours to show that Shukri
16 Aliu's evidence may be incorrect? Can you point us to such a list or to
17 such evidence?
18 A. Ali Shukrija could not have seen this because I said he wasn't
19 there. Who knows where he was at the time. Because already then he was
20 probably among the ranks of the KLA. But, no, I don't have a list of that
21 kind. I don't have it with me. Probably it does exist somewhere in the
22 field, because there are lists of mobilised units with all the names and
23 surnames and the equipment issued.
24 Q. Now, the next of two other points on this topic can be dealt with
25 quickly. The Court was happy to admit collectively, I think, exhibits 6
1 to 11, the various appointments of people to position of commanders of the
2 civil protection staff; Popovic, Besovic, Furjanovic, Nikolic. All of
3 those people appointed to these positions are Serbs, aren't they?
4 Andjelkovic, Ilic, Odalovic, Tasic. That's about it. They're all Serbs.
5 A. Yes, they are, except two. Lower down in the municipalities,
6 there were Albanians there as well. I think two or three of them, in
8 Q. [Previous translation continues] ...
9 A. In some of the municipalities.
10 Q. Show us the names, please.
11 A. There are no names here. I said municipalities. There are no
12 appointments to municipalities included on this document.
13 Q. Now, the last point, we can find the exhibit if necessary, but the
14 Chamber's very familiar with it: There's an order that's been relied upon
15 by the accused through General Delic and other witnesses of the 23rd of
16 March, Exhibit 356, and in that order the instruction is given for the
17 Pristina Corps to operate with the armed non-Siptar population, and there
18 may be other orders to the like effect.
19 By March of 1999, you're in your position where you have to know
20 all about what's happening in the military. Were you aware that orders
21 were being given to incorporate in the fighting the armed non-Siptar
23 And I'll just read out the terms of this particular order. The
24 assignment is "... with reinforcements and armed non-Siptar population
25 from Kosovo and Metohija the Pristina Corps is assisting the MUP in
1 crushing and destroying the SDS in their own zone of responsibility."
2 That's terminology of the order. Were you aware of such orders being
4 A. Well, I don't know. There are three things here; the army, the
5 MUP, and some armed civilians. And now you claim that, but I don't know
6 about that document.
7 Q. Very well. We'll find it for you and show it to you in due
8 course. Are you saying in your position as the person who has overall
9 knowledge of military activities in Kosovo, and visited Kosovo, that you
10 weren't aware that the army was incorporating within its ranks the armed
11 non-Siptar population despite the fact that you, in your Ministry of
12 Defence role, had been engaged in the arming process?
13 A. As you can see, the act by which I secured weapons and had them
14 distributed dates back to the end of 1998. So that in that situation,
15 well, I don't know. Pursuant to the law on defence, in the zone of combat
16 operations of certain units, all armed components come under the command
17 of different levels of command within the army; battalions, brigades.
18 Mostly brigades. So that if some did exist, they had either been
19 mobilised as a reserve MUP force or they were mobilised as the reserve
20 force of the army.
21 Q. We'll show you the document if you don't accept -- I don't know if
22 we can find it immediately. If that's really your -- it's 300, tab ...
23 If you'd like to put the appropriate bits on the overhead
24 projector. Paragraph 2, Mr. Prendergast, but I'm not sure what page it's
25 on. Page 2, I think.
1 You see the context of this order. Expectation of the STS putting
2 up fierce resistance, then the passage I've read out to you, and then the
4 A. Could you please indicate which paragraph --
5 Q. Certainly. Paragraph 2 in the original, and it's headed "Pristina
6 Corps Assignment." It's a very short paragraph. The first one.
7 You understand, Mr. Farkas, this is a document produced by the
9 A. Well, I don't understand. I don't see reference to civilians
11 Q. The way it's -- the way it reads in translation is, "With
12 reinforcements and armed non-Siptar population from Kosovo and Metohija."
13 That's how it reads in translation.
14 A. Well, then, we don't have the same translation. Here I have this
15 document and paragraph 2, it says, "The assignment of the Pristina Corps."
16 In the preamble, yes. Yes. That's what it says.
17 Q. So?
18 A. Yes, that's right. It is a document. This document is one I'm
19 not aware of. I see this document for the first time. I see that it is
20 dated the 23rd of March, early spring. I don't know about this document,
21 and this is the first time that I see it. I'm not aware of it.
22 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... the following day, don't you?
24 JUDGE ROBINSON: We missed the first part of the question,
25 Mr. Nice.
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
2 MR. NICE: He took up his duties the following day and becomes the
3 person through whom all information is passed.
4 Q. This very operation, the subject then of this order, lasted for
5 some five days right at the beginning of your term of duty. Evidence
6 about this, Mr. Farkas, includes witnesses saying they saw included in the
7 military force people whose faces they recognised or who they recognised
8 as local Serb villagers. Are you prepared to accept that this order did
9 take effect with the use of armed non-Siptar civilians?
10 A. Since the order was issued, it probably and certainly came into
11 force. However, this is the period when there was intensive mobilisation
12 going on and replenishment, reinforcement of units. So the persons that
13 you referred to could only have been mobilised. Otherwise, they wouldn't
14 have been able to be part of the army and within the composition of the
15 units. So before they join up with the unit they are civilians, but they
16 are military recruits, conscripts, and they come pursuant to a call for
17 mobilisation. They put on their uniforms and then become members of the
18 army of Yugoslavia. So that these individuals that the witnesses
19 recognise were probably recognised because they had been civilians before
20 that. They were mobilised and joined the army. I don't know what kind of
21 proof or evidence you consider this to be.
22 Q. It says nothing about them being mobilised. Just have the order
23 to go on and the evidence from witnesses.
24 Let me ask you a question that will appear to be disconnected but
25 I'll bring it back to this immediate topic. Do you remember yesterday how
1 you explained to the Court that there was no order to cleanse the area, no
2 order to expel Albanians and that for there to be such an order there
3 would have to be written orders, instructions passing through a chain of
4 command. Do you remember that part of your evidence?
5 A. Yes, I do.
6 Q. As a general and an educated man, I must suggest to you that you
7 must be aware that in fact the serious crimes of ethnic cleansing or
8 genocide can all too easily be accomplished by much more general
9 directions given by knowing leaders who rely on, amongst other things,
10 local enmities and hatreds to put their plan into effect, and that that's
11 one of the reasons that it is obviously dangerous to incorporate armed
12 locals in otherwise formal military units? Are you aware of that as a
13 general proposition?
14 A. First of all, my statement yesterday referred to or, rather, I
15 explained what cleaning meant, cleansing meant, and the operation
16 conducted by the army together with the MUP. It was cleansing or, rather,
17 the struggle against -- or mopping up and the struggle against terrorists,
18 that "ciscenje." So that's what my statement referred to.
19 And the second part of my statement related to the fact that
20 through the chain of command and responsibility, without orders no acts
21 like this could be carried out. That is to say that in the sense of your
22 interpretation of the word "ciscenje," the killing of the population and
23 so on.
24 So the army exclusively led an operation or, rather, entered into
25 combat against Siptar terrorists when they were being attacked by those
1 terrorists. They responded to the attack. Had -- they passed through the
2 territory probably to ensure communication and supplies coming in. And I
3 said that up until the second half of that year we had 50 per cent of the
4 territory of Kosovo cut off from the rest, which means occupied or taken
5 over, taken control of by the Siptar terrorists, precisely as is happening
6 in recent days. The representatives or forces of the UN who are there are
7 unable to move around Kosovo now.
8 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... senior military figure I'm
9 going to ask it once more in a slightly different way. Do you not accept
10 as a senior military figure incorporating armed local civilians is
11 dangerous because they may serve their own as well as military objectives
12 in the way they perform once armed and in communities they know? Do you
13 not accept that that's a danger?
14 A. They have had to be under the system of command, which means they
15 had to have a uniform, they had to be deployed in the units, regardless of
16 whether they were locals and what part they were from. So they were
17 mobilised from that area and became members of those compositions, those
18 units. I don't know the substance and essence of this order judging by
19 the preamble, but you couldn't have civilians lined up with the army,
20 whether they were armed or not armed. I'm quite sure that no witness will
21 bear that out and say that they saw civilians as army members, within the
22 composition of the army and its units. If they were included, as it says
23 here, then they were armed and were dressed in uniforms and were under
24 somebody's command. And that is the only way that I can interpret what
25 I'm seeing here for the first time.
1 Q. Now, then, let's go on. You told us --
2 MR. NICE: Incidentally, Your Honours, there are other similar
3 orders before you with the use of the non-Siptar population. There's one
4 on the 15th of April. I haven't got the number of it yet.
5 Q. You take up your position on the 24th of March, but you told us --
6 yes, 24th of March, but you told us barely a month before the aggression
7 started this accused called you and told you of his intention to appoint
8 you as head of security administration. While I don't challenge that
9 meetings between you and he may have occurred privately as he was in the
10 process of edging Dimitrijevic out, but I want to ask you about the detail
11 of this conversation. I come back to the question I asked yesterday: Is
12 there any note available to you of what passed in that conversation?
13 A. Mr. Nice, first of all, Mr. Milosevic didn't call me privately.
14 His call went through the cabinet, the offices of the Federal Defence
15 Ministry, and the Federal Defence Ministry called me and said that I was
16 to report to the president. This was not a private meeting of any kind.
17 I went to see the president, and when I arrived, there was nobody
18 there to keep the minutes. I was supposed to go to the Supreme Commander
19 or president of the state and keep notes? I didn't know why I was going
20 there in the first place. I didn't know why I was being convened. I did
21 not keep any notes, and I don't know whether that conversation was
22 recorded in any way or taped in any way, and there was nobody else
24 So I said the -- what I said about Aco Dimitrijevic and the answer
25 I was given.
1 Q. What did you say about Aco Dimitrijevic in the meeting?
2 A. No. I didn't tell Aco Dimitrijevic anything because he wasn't
3 there. What I said was this: I said what I stated in connection with my
4 question to the president, What will happen to or with Aco Dimitrijevic?
5 That's what that was about.
6 Q. To take up this position offered you by the accused, you would be
7 directly answering to him or subordinate to the Chief of the General
8 Staff, Ojdanic?
9 A. Directly subordinate to General Ojdanic.
10 Q. So is it not rather curious, do you think, to have that
11 intervening level of management or control missing from this meeting,
12 directly interviewed by and spoken to by this accused without Ojdanic
13 present to hear what you should say? Doesn't that strike you as a little
15 A. No, it didn't strike me as a little odd. I was the deputy federal
16 minister, the president summoned me, and I thought it was a final
17 completion of the defence plan that we were to discuss. And after that
18 meeting, immediately afterwards, I went to see the minister. I reported
19 to him and told him what we had discussed, and the minister told me that I
20 should urgently speed up the final preparations for the defence of the
21 country with all the plans. And after that reporting I went to report to
22 Ojdanic, and Ojdanic told me that he knew about -- or, rather, that the
23 proposal about that -- that the proposal was one he was aware of. So he
24 probably discussed it somewhere or they probably talked on some occasion.
25 And it's not strange for the president of the republic to summon a general
1 to a meeting.
2 Q. See, I don't challenge that things will have been said and even
3 written in meetings about the proper behaviour of the army in times of
4 conflict. I may have time to ask you some questions about that later,
5 maybe not, but here you told this Court that the accused told you on this
6 occasion, one month before any bombs fell, or about one month before any
7 bombs fell, that the army -- the security service was to do its utmost to
8 use its competence not to, it reads "deface," the army and soldiers. It
9 must use its line of command and its presence in all those units to
10 prevent any possible crimes from being committed, and that a soldier's
11 face must be saved. So that you told us that the accused was focusing a
12 month before he was attacked on the fact that his soldiers wouldn't do bad
14 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter --
15 MR. NICE: I'm so sorry.
16 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note that where it was "defaced,"
17 she meant to say "lose face."
18 MR. NICE: Thank you. Very grateful.
19 Q. Now, a month before any bombs fall, according to you, he's
20 focusing on the fact that his soldiers might do bad things. Is that true,
21 or have you just made it up?
22 A. I didn't make it up. It's quite normal and natural that during
23 mass mobilisation and a possible attack, et cetera, that certain things
24 happen which are unwarranted in the army, and we're witness that this kind
25 of thing happened in other parts of Yugoslavia. So this was a preventive
1 measure and caution to undertake everything possible to avoid anything
2 untoward happening. On the other hand, it was less than a month, but as I
3 later learnt when I took up my appointment, there were very strong
4 intelligence preparations and campaigns, media campaigns for a possible
5 bombing, so that that is nothing strange, it's nothing unusual that things
6 like that were discussed and that certain problems were pinpointed that
7 could possibly happen and to try and prevent them, along those lines.
8 Q. This kind of thing happening in other parts of Yugoslavia. Where,
9 when, and what?
10 A. During the combat operations we saw things like that happening.
11 So the seceded republics. First of all, it started with Slovenia where,
12 at the border with Slovenia, the Slovenians killed several soldiers, and
13 that's where it started. And they were unarmed soldiers, at that.
14 Q. Yes. Well, that's, in a sense, rather a long time ago and it's
15 another group of people who can be blamed because they were Slovenians. I
16 don't think that's what you were really implying when you said there'd
17 been problems. You may not have intended to let that slip out, but you
18 did, so I'd now like a little bit more detail.
19 You said certain things happened which were unwarranted in the
20 army and we're witness that this kind of thing happened in other parts -
21 plural - in Yugoslavia. Just tell us, please, what you're talking about.
22 A. I didn't say that we were eyewitnesses and conscious of it, but we
23 knew that things like that happen. We knew on the basis of the press,
24 through articles coming in, refugees expelled from the territory of
25 Croatia, 300.000 people who arrived. So that kind of thing. And all the
1 events in Bosnia. That was known. The newspapers wrote about it. From
2 -- at one point from Bosnia we had a very large number of Bosnian
3 refugees, which means -- and these refugees were accepted and taken in in
4 Serbia. And then the newspapers wrote about events like that and this was
5 common knowledge by reading the press.
6 Q. You took a declaration to tell the whole truth and you seem still
7 somehow to have overlooked the possibility that any Serb soldiers did bad
8 things. I'll give you a third chance.
9 What were you referring to when you said you had experience of
10 these things happening, by reference to Serbs doing bad things? Tell us,
12 A. What I meant was -- or what I said was what I had read about in
13 the papers, that during those combat operations crimes happened as well.
14 So on both sides. That means that crimes like that were committed by
15 Croats and Serbs on the territory where those combat operations took
17 Q. Dubrovnik, Srebrenica; is that what you have in mind?
18 A. I had in mind other areas that you're not referring to. I meant
19 the entire territory of the former Yugoslavia.
20 Q. Tell us about the defence plan. We've been trying to get it for
21 two years but nobody's provided it to us. What did the defence plan say
22 for the civilians in Kosovo? What was to happen to them?
23 A. What do you mean what was to happen to them? What could happen to
25 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... the final version of a
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 defence plan forecasting a conflict in a few weeks' time, as indeed it
2 happened, where the international community would be coming down on you
3 with bombs, as it did, or NATO did. What was the plan?
4 Break it into two parts, if you like: What did you plan to do
5 with the KLA? What did you plan to do with the non-KLA? Tell us.
6 A. Mr. Nice, first of all, you do not distinguish between the defence
7 plan of the country from the plan of use of the army. The National
8 Defence Plan contains a number of elements that have nothing to do with
9 combat activities or armed combat by the army of Yugoslavia, except in the
10 part whereby the civilian defence and civilian protection were to be armed
11 according to Geneva Conventions.
12 So the National Defence Plan implies, first of all, mobilisation
13 of civilian structures, the wartime mobilisation of the Assembly
14 government and all the other institutions, removal into shelters of all
15 material goods, safeguarding of the national bank and the treasury,
16 conversion of the economy to wartime production, and safeguarding economic
17 resources from possible damage. So the National Defence Plan has all
18 these elements and some others, but it does not envisage combat except on
19 the part of armed forces, such as the JNA.
20 For instance, if you want me to explain the part that deals with
21 the conversion of the economy to wartime production, I can explain.
22 Q. You told us what you were presenting to the accused on this
23 surprise meeting a month before hostilities began. It had to do with the
24 final details of the plan. Did that plan have nothing whatsoever to do
25 with how to react to NATO if they started to bomb? Because that's what
1 we're interested in. You do understand that, don't you?
2 A. Well, that plan is the Civilian Defence Plan, and it is the role
3 of the civilian defence, civilian protection to protect the civilian
4 population from natural disasters in emergency situations, but also from
5 wartime activities. That plan envisaged the sheltering of populations
6 into proper shelters or other places that were safe from bombing.
7 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Nice, I must stop you. We'll take the break
8 now for 20 minutes.
9 --- Recess taken at 11.23 a.m.
10 --- On resuming at 11.45 a.m.
11 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Nice.
12 MR. NICE: Before I return to the questioning, the issue about the
13 nature of the expert committee, I think I can deal with, if I find time.
14 It's in tab 10 of the overall bundle of VJ commission documents but only
15 some of them was -- were produced, but I'll try to find time to deal with
16 it with this witness.
17 Q. Your last answer, Mr. Farkas, was to the effect that the plan
18 envisaged the sheltering of populations or other places that were safe
19 from bombing so -- and very shortly - just yes or no if you can - does
20 that plan deal specifically with what should happen to the Kosovo
21 population? If yes, does it break down how it should deal with the
22 alleged terrorist part of the population and the non-terrorist part of it?
23 A. The plan does not make any distinctions either in terms of
24 religion or ethnicity. It is defined in terms of the population, not
25 religion or ethnicity, and it was not distinguishing between Kosovo and
1 Vojvodina or central Serbia; it applied to the entire territory.
2 MR. NICE: Well, Your Honour, we remain, of course, interested to
3 see any document of the kind of the plan we've been seeking that covers
4 the preparations for the NATO bombing.
5 While that document is on the overhead projector, could
6 Mr. Prendergast perhaps take us to the top of the front page?
7 Q. And in light of your last answers, Mr. Farkas, about the
8 protection of the civilians in time of war, do you accept, as a military
9 man, that the military can only function properly in war under civilian
11 A. The military do not decide about war and peace. It is the
12 politicians that decide on that. The state of war was introduced
13 according to the decision of the Assembly, that is the federal government.
14 Q. Very well. Likewise, a police, whether militarised, as the police
15 was here, or otherwise, cannot in time of war without being responsive to
16 civilian leadership; correct?
17 A. Leaders of the MUP or, rather, the minister of the interior is a
18 member of the cabinet. So he is a member of the government of the
19 Republic of Serbia. The government makes its decisions jointly, and the
20 minister of interior acts accordingly.
21 Q. But that's rather different from the military, then, is it? One
22 responds directly to the government, and the military responds where?
23 A. The army is answerable to the federal government. It is a federal
24 institution, and until that moment, the beginning of the war --
25 Q. What we'd like your help with is this: Look at the top of this
1 document. You'll see something called the Joint Command, and the order
2 comes from the Joint Command.
3 And if Mr. Prendergast would take us, just to remind us, to what's
4 at the end of the document.
5 And if you go to the end of the document, it simply is signed
6 "Joint Command for Kosovo and Metohija." So you were there, you were in
7 the army. What was the Joint Command, please?
8 A. That term "The Joint Command" is something I first heard in the
9 second half of June 1998. And in my understanding at that time, in view
10 of my position then, it was a body for coordination and cooperation among
11 various agencies on the ground, specifically on the territory of Kosovo.
12 Thus, it was a body for coordination.
13 Q. Well, if it was a body for coordination, despite the fact that
14 this is an order that it gave, who was giving the orders? Which is the
15 political body giving instructions to the army? That's what we're trying
16 to find out here.
17 A. Well, there was no special political body for that. The
18 leadership of the state was entering a war, and the state is led by the
19 head of state who is at that same time the Supreme Commander. There is
20 also a Supreme Command, and within the Supreme Command he is the Supreme
21 Commander. So both the Supreme Command and the Supreme Commander command
22 the army.
23 Q. And likewise, the Joint Command is the Supreme Command and is the
24 head of state; is that right?
25 A. No, no.
1 Q. You see, the --
2 A. No, that's not correct. The Joint Command cannot be what it seems
3 to be here. I'll try to explain as I understand it, because I'm seeing
4 this document from -- for the first time.
5 There is a constitutionally defined territory of the country in
6 which suddenly terrorist activities are taking place. According to the
7 administrative division, it is happening in the territory of Kosovo and
8 Metohija. Kosovo and Metohija is a part of the Republic of Serbia, and
9 behind Serbia there is a community of republics that have federal bodies,
10 and naturally when something happens like what happened in Kosovo, that
11 state, like any other state would be in its place, was anxious to resolve
12 the problem.
13 So we have the involvement of political structures, the army, and
14 the MUP. The army, as a federal institution, has its own line of
15 subordination. The police reaches up to the republic level, and at that
16 level it is present in Kosovo. The Ministry of Defence has its own
17 structure down to municipalities, which are part of the federal
18 organisation. And of course there are local governments, beginning with
19 the level of municipalities. And among all these bodies it is normal that
20 somebody should be required to coordinate their work when half of the
21 territory of that wretched Kosovo is already under terrorist blockade.
22 And naturally, the state and the federal institutions are anxious to
23 delegate a representative to go down there to be present on the ground
24 where all that is happening. And there were also representatives of other
25 bodies, from the federal level through the republican, province level,
1 down to the municipal level.
2 Q. See if you can accept a few propositions from your experience. In
3 time of war, an army needs to have a clear understanding of who is giving
4 it instructions; correct?
5 A. Correct.
6 Q. Likewise, a police force, militarised or otherwise.
7 A. I don't know what it means in this context, "militarised." How am
8 I to understand that?
9 Q. In comparison with other police forces in Europe, for example, the
10 Kosovo -- the Serbian police force was militarised, was much more like a
11 gendarmerie than an ordinary police force. Do you accept that? So that
12 in time of war, it's got comparatively heavy weapons and again it's --
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson.
14 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, yes. Yes, Mr. Milosevic?
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] The witness received an
16 interpretation that said "compared to other police in the army," and as I
17 see from the transcript, the question was "compared to other police forces
18 in Europe." The witness did not hear such a question properly in the
19 Serbian language.
20 JUDGE ROBINSON: Well, with that clarification, will the witness
21 answer the question.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, the police is structured, to
23 the extent material resources allow, in keeping with the structure of
24 other police forces in Europe. As for militarisation, the police has
25 weapons both in war and in peace. It is armed and has a reserve force,
1 just like the army. That is clear and I think that is the case in all
2 other countries.
3 MR. NICE:
4 Q. Do you accept my suggestion that it needs -- a police force in
5 such circumstances needs to have absolute clarity about who is giving it
6 instructions. Do you accept that?
7 A. There is direct, clearly defined subordination, just like in the
8 army. Command and subordination is very clear.
9 Q. And do you accept --
10 A. Down from -- starting with the level of minister of defence and
11 the interior minister.
12 Q. Do you accept that, particularly in time of war, it's important
13 that the army and the police of this type knows what each other is doing
14 and acts in a coordinated fashion?
15 A. That is why this institution for coordination existed --
16 Q. Thank you.
17 A. -- that is referred to here as the Joint Command.
18 Q. And do you finally accept that in 1998, at least, the Joint
19 Command was exactly what it appeared to be, namely a body that had the
20 authority to issue instructions to both the army and the police?
21 A. I don't think so, although they coordinated at certain levels in
22 order to avoid friendly fire in combat actions, and gathered information
23 on the situation on the ground and among the population. That simply
24 provided certain coordination in order to avoid friendly fire.
25 I don't know why they called themselves the Joint Command and why
1 they created this document, but if they agreed so, there was direct
2 subordination. The commander of the 3rd Army could not have taken a
3 single step without asking the Chief of General Staff. Similarly, MUP
4 commanders could not do anything, even if they had agreed to do something,
5 until they received appropriate orders from their line of command.
6 This is vertical subordination.
7 Q. All right.
8 A. There is also horizontal coordination in certain areas.
9 Q. Two things and one more document and a general proposition. The
10 general proposition is this, Mr. Farkas: Although you're giving detailed
11 answers now, you actually gave the game away with your first answer, which
12 I'm going to read back to you from page 52, line 20. And the game you've
13 given away is that in fact, as you and all the other leadership knows,
14 this war was in the hands of this accused. You said this: I asked you
15 about the body that was giving instructions to the army, and you said,
16 "There was no special political body for that. The leadership of the
17 state was entering a war, and the state is led by the head of state who is
18 at that same time the Supreme Commander. There is also a Supreme Command,
19 and within the Supreme Command he is the Supreme Commander. So both the
20 Supreme Command and the Supreme Commander command the army."
21 Now, in that answer weren't you, however reluctantly, simply
22 revealing that this accused ran everything, and that's why -- let me just
23 finish the proposition because you may not know about the last bit but I'm
24 going to explain it to you in a minute -- and that's why the authorities
25 and witnesses have never been able to explain with clarity what the Joint
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 Command was, what the Supreme Command was, because in fact everybody knows
2 it's him. Is that the truth?
3 A. I didn't understand. "Him" who; the accused?
4 Q. Yes. He ran everything; police and army.
5 A. Well, somebody has to manage. The Assembly reaches a decision to
6 impose a state of war, and somebody has to run things, has to be on top of
7 things. That is a clearly defined, constitutionally defined function of
8 the Supreme Command Staff, the Supreme Command, and the Supreme Commander.
9 I think it's the case in every country. If the country is at war,
10 somebody has to control things. Our constitution envisages that the
11 Supreme Command is headed by the president of the state. I don't see
12 anything odd about that.
13 Q. So if we look at the document on the screen at the moment, and if
14 you look at the last couple of lines of the document in the original, I
15 think you follow English in any event so whichever, as to this
16 comprehensive order of March of 1999, it says this: "The Joint Command
17 for Kosovo and Metohija from the Pristina section shall command and
18 control all forces during combat operations."
19 So what does that mean?
20 A. I did not manage to find that passage. Where is it?
21 Q. Just above the end of the document, the last line or so, just
22 before the signing off by the Joint Command.
23 It's the Joint Command from the Pristina section. Well, now the
24 Supreme Command is Serbia-wide. The Joint Command is its --
25 A. Yes, I see.
1 Q. -- its alter ego or its existence in Kosovo, the Joint Command for
2 the Pristina -- for Kosovo and Metohija from the Pristina section. And
3 all this traces back to this accused, doesn't it? He's in charge.
4 A. Well, this Joint Command coordinated this action, or these
5 activities, and it's normal that after these agreements had been reached
6 everybody issues their relevant orders, and I believe that this was
7 followed by the issuing of orders to relevant units which are not headed
8 Joint Command. The same document probably went to the police as well so
9 that they can create their documents down their chain of command and issue
10 assignments to the police like the army issued assignments to army units.
11 I don't believe those orders were headed Joint Command. They coordinated
12 this, and they would probably continue to do so. Instead of "shall
13 command and control," it should have probably said "shall coordinate," if
14 problems occur, to provide an adequate response on the part of the army
15 and the police.
16 In this case subordination is not affected, because in lower
17 levels of command this argument, this thesis or, rather, this term
18 "coordination" is certainly -- certainly doesn't feature as it does here.
19 Q. Another document I'd like you to look at, an existing exhibit,
20 Exhibit 323, tab 3, comes from the Supreme Command Staff, 17th of April,
21 1999, and it says, if you follow it under the date, "Command post." Then
22 this says "To the 3rd Army command." And then the link is: "The Kosovo
23 and Metohija Joint Command order, strictly confidential ..." and then
24 various other references and suggestions, and it's signed by Ojdanic as
25 chief of the Supreme Command.
1 So Ojdanic, the chief of the Supreme Command Staff, or the Supreme
2 Command as he signs himself, recognises the existence of the Joint
3 Command, doesn't he? And he recognises the authority of the Joint Command
4 order. Can you explain that?
5 A. Well, this followed probably as soon as General Ojdanic learned
6 about the existence of such a document with such a heading, although this
7 does not have a signature or anything, whereas in military documents there
8 is a stamp and a signature. General Ojdanic certainly came into
9 possession of this order, and this is how he reacts, and then he gives his
10 suggestions as to what should be done.
11 Q. A senior military officer with years and years of training isn't
12 going, is he, to pick up a document that comes from a non-existent body
13 and respond to it. His first response must be, "I don't recognise the
14 authority of the body that's writing to me." Surely that is a
15 non-controversial proposition, isn't it?
16 A. General Ojdanic probably, just like I before I came to the General
17 Staff, had certain information that there was some sort of coordinating
18 body down there, and I believe this is the only document of this kind
19 where this Joint Command is mentioned in the documents of the army of
21 Q. There are in fact several others because they've slipped out, but
22 why did you think this was the only one if you knew nothing really about
23 it? Why did you think this was the only one, Mr. Farkas?
24 A. Because I practically didn't see either this document or the
25 others you say exist. I haven't seen it in my --
1 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... "I believe this is the only
2 document of this kind where this Joint Command is mentioned." Did you say
3 that because you and the commission know that along the way, by mistake,
4 initially one document slipped out to reveal the truth and others have
5 since come to light and you still only remember the one that was the first
6 one disclosed to us in error -- or not in error, by slip of the
7 authorities. Is that the position? Is that why you said that?
8 A. No, that's not correct, Mr. Nice. No, no, no. That's not my
10 The commission was not concealing anything. First of all, the
11 commission did not have such a purpose. Its task was to establish as good
12 cooperation as possible through the state with The Hague Tribunal. It had
13 no other tasks. There was a request from the commission, addressed to the
14 relevant state body, to establish some sort of agency that would give
15 waivers to relevant persons of the official secrets act or military
16 secrets or whatever, so that such documents can be released.
17 Q. A few other pieces of evidence that I want you to consider and one
18 more document to look at, if you can help us. Two pieces of evidence are
19 this: From the expert's report --
20 JUDGE BONOMY: Before you go on, Mr. Nice, what was the number of
21 the previous document, the one that you looked at in some detail?
22 MR. NICE: 300, tab 356 -- sorry, D300, tab 356.
23 JUDGE BONOMY: Thank you very much.
24 MR. NICE:
25 Q. Two bits of evidence that I'll tell you about, Mr. Farkas, for
1 your comment, and then a document to look at as we try to solve this
2 riddle. In the expert report of Mr. Coo, who happens to be sitting next
3 to me, there's a report referred to from Pavkovic to Ojdanic of the 25th
4 of May which says that they should continue to have the MUP under Joint
5 Command, as has been the case until then.
6 The second piece of evidence: Your subordinate and deputy,
7 Vasiljevic, has given evidence that he attended a Joint Command meeting in
8 June 1999 and that the following people were present: Sainovic,
9 Andjelkovic, Pavkovic, himself Vasiljevic, Lukic, Stefanovic, and
11 Now, thinking back, bearing in mind that you're, you tell us, the
12 recipient of a great deal of information about the army, is it not the
13 case that there was indeed a Joint Command body representing the political
14 will, headed in Kosovo by, at that stage, Sainovic? Yes or no.
15 A. It is true that my deputy attended one such meeting, and upon his
16 return he told me that he had been there by accident because Pavkovic had
17 taken him to that meeting. The meeting lasted only about 20 minutes, and
18 it was an exchange of information between the MUP and the army as to where
19 they were, what they should do, and he confirmed the fact that this
20 meeting was chaired by Sainovic or headed by Sainovic. Since he was there
21 from beginning to end, he also said that no decisions were made, no orders
22 were issued to the body as a whole or to individuals. The only purpose
23 was an exchange of information among the army, the police, the local
24 self-government bodies, et cetera.
25 Q. Last document on this topic. It's to go on the overhead
1 projector. It's a submission of Serbia and Montenegro, dated -- I think
2 it's actually undated on the body of the document, but I'll find the date
3 of it in just a second. And it follows an order of this Trial Chamber
4 dated the 15th of September of 2003 in litigation under Rule 54 bis. And
5 it's dated the 29th of December, 2003. Thank you very much.
6 If we could go, please, to paragraph 2 on the overhead projector,
7 Mr. Prendergast.
8 This response of the government reflects the order to provide
9 conclusive information on whether the entities named Supreme Command and
10 Supreme Command Staff or other entities with similar functions existed --
11 it's the submission itself. Could you go another page, please,
12 Mr. Prendergast. Thank you very much. And we're at paragraph 2.
13 On -- "... to provide conclusive information on whether the
14 entities named 'Supreme Command' and 'Supreme Command Staff' or other
15 entities with similar functions existed during the state of war ... from
16 24 March until 10 June ..."
17 Here's the answer: "In this regard, Serbia and Montenegro wishes
18 to reiterate its previous statement that no state organ with the name
19 'Supreme Command' existed according to the Constitution of the Federal
20 Republic of Yugoslavia, the Law on Defence and the Law on the Yugoslav
21 Army. According to Article 135 of the Constitution of the Federal
22 Republic of Yugoslavia, the army of Yugoslavia in war and peace is under
23 command of the President of the Republic in accordance with decisions of
24 the Supreme Defence Council."
25 Over the page, please.
1 "According to all available information, the army of Yugoslavia
2 before, during --"
3 A. I --
4 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, General.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I haven't got the Serbian
6 translation out here. All of this is written in English.
7 MR. NICE:
8 Q. I'm sorry, there isn't a Serbian version available to us. It was,
9 I think, filed in English. And I hope I'm reading at a level that you can
11 So far it's said there was no state organ with the name Supreme
12 Command --
13 A. Well, that's precisely what I wanted to ask you, please. Could
14 you please read slower so I can follow.
15 Q. I'll read the next passage more slowly. "According to all
16 available information, the army of Yugoslavia before, during and after the
17 state of war in 1999 was under the command of the President of the Federal
18 Republic of Yugoslavia, in accordance with the decisions of the Supreme
19 Defence Council. However, as the Chamber has been informed, the Supreme
20 Defence Council did not convene between the 23 March 1999, and 5 October
22 "3. As for the term 'Supreme Command Staff,' it seems to have
23 been used by some offices of the Yugoslav army as synonym for the wartime
24 organisation of the General Staff. In particular, this term seems to have
25 been used by the Chief of the General Staff of the Yugoslav army during
1 the time of war in 1999. This may be regarded as an oral order which,
2 however, was never materialised in a formal decision."
3 So that's part of the answer provided by the authority, the
4 government. Do you have any comment? Do you accept that or do you say
5 that doesn't adequately reflect the position?
6 A. This is the answer of the government. However, in order to
7 function according to theory, for a command to be able to function, it has
8 to have a series of elements that have to be met. First and foremost, one
9 has to know who heads this command, and this command, in order to have
10 official documents, has to have a stamp and a signature. That is one
12 Now, whether terms have been replaced, whether officers, instead
13 of using "Supreme Command," that they started using "Supreme Command
14 Staff," I don't think that would be right, if I understood properly what
15 you read out now just in haste.
16 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson.
17 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic.
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] My impression is that the witness
19 did not understand these assertions coming from the government of Serbia
20 and Montenegro at all. Namely, what is asserted here is that there is no
21 such forum or, rather, body which is called the Supreme Command Staff.
22 There is no mention of the Joint Command here at all. It says here that
23 the president of the republic commands the army in war and peace, and the
24 term "Supreme Command Staff" does not exist in laws and other regulations.
25 I think that the witness did not understand the assertion that is
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 being made. The witness should be asked differently --
2 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you, Mr. Milosevic. The witness has a
3 slight disadvantage, not having the Serbian text.
4 Mr. Nice, would you put the question again.
5 MR. NICE:
6 Q. I asked you whether you accepted the stated position, which was
7 the exact question I asked, and the summary of what the government has
8 said is that no Supreme Command existed, that the army was under the
9 command of the president of the federal republic, that no Supreme Defence
10 Council meetings happened between the 23rd of March and the 5th of
11 October, and that the term "Supreme Command Staff" seems to have been used
12 by some offices as a synonym for wartime organisation of the General
13 Staff. Those are the four points that emerge from this answer.
14 Do you have any comment to make on any one of them?
15 A. Well, certainly. The Supreme Command Staff did exist. All the
16 documents that you have here are entitled the Supreme Command Staff, and
17 then there's a signature of the Chief of Staff of the Supreme Command. So
18 this body did exist. And I don't know which government it was that gave
19 this kind of response. However, it cannot be denied the fact that the
20 Supreme Command Staff did exist. There are many documents where this is
21 confirmed through the command. And further on, "The Supreme Defence
22 Council met ..." and so on and so forth. I as a member of the Supreme
23 Command Staff don't know about that.
24 As for the Supreme Command Staff, I know that it existed and I was
25 a member of that staff. So I don't know which government and in which way
1 could deny that we called the Supreme Command Staff -- or, rather, that we
2 were confusing the terms, the General Staff and the Supreme Command Staff.
3 Q. Well, I must suggest --
4 JUDGE BONOMY: In posing that question, you said that one of the
5 points made in the document was that the Supreme Command existed.
6 MR. NICE: Did not exist.
7 JUDGE BONOMY: I read it as saying it didn't exist.
8 MR. NICE: I thought I said did not exist. That was certainly my
9 intention. May I just look at something on a colleague's screen.
10 JUDGE BONOMY: That led the witness to agree with you, that of
11 course it existed.
12 MR. NICE: Thank you.
13 Q. Is the simple truth, as I suggest given away by you in your very
14 first answer, that the political decision-maker for everything that
15 happened in this conflict in Kosovo was this accused, and he operated in
16 the territory through, for example, Sainovic, and he operated through
17 whatever formal chains of command were necessary for the army, but one way
18 and another it was he and he alone who was in charge of both the army and
19 the police in Kosovo?
20 A. Well, when the state of war was declared, according to the
21 constitution and the law, it is clearly defined how the defence of the
22 country functions and who heads the defence. That is a constitutional
23 category, which is elaborated further in the law. And there is the
24 Supreme Command Staff, and how can you then have some kind of para-staffs
25 through which the Supreme Commander can command? What is clearly defined
1 is the chain of command, the line of command.
2 As for political decisions, the Assembly passed a decision on the
3 defence of the country, a state of war was declared, and at any rate, in
4 any country, that kind of decision is a political decision. I mean, I
5 don't know. It's not the generals and the military that reach such a
6 decision. Somebody has to reach a decision on declaring a state of war,
7 so it is really for the state, for the top state level to make that kind
8 of decision. And then there are clearly defined structures as to the
9 command and control of certain systems, notably the military.
10 Q. Again you're giving a long detailed answer, as people have been
11 giving us long detailed answers about Joint Command and Supreme Command,
12 and sending us filings like this. But my simple proposition is capable of
13 a simple answer, I must suggest, Mr. Farkas, and that is that in the
14 Kosovo conflict this accused was in charge of both the army and the
15 military, and insofar as he needed to execute or administer political
16 decisions locally, he operated through people such as Sainovic. Isn't
17 that a simple question with a simple answer?
18 A. Well, I did not quite understand what you said. You've swallowed
19 part of this. I haven't heard all of it. It should have been more
21 Headed what, the army and --
22 Q. [Previous translation continues] ...
23 A. Yeah, the police. Well, it is only natural that the Supreme
24 Commander is at the helm of all armed forces in a conflict. And the
25 constitution clearly defines the powers of the police and the powers and
1 the tasks of the military.
2 Q. Right. Next topic, please. The meeting on the 17th of May of
3 1999. We've heard about this meeting from Vasiljevic, your deputy at that
4 time, and there are a couple of things he said about the meeting that I'd
5 like your comment on.
6 He says that at that meeting paramilitaries were discussed, that
7 Rade Markovic says volunteers were a necessary evil that accompany any
8 war, that he had received an offer from Arkan for 100 Tigers and he had
9 taken 30. And Vasiljevic went on to say that the accused didn't react to
10 this in any -- in any way, negatively or otherwise.
11 A. This first part is correct, so that is correct. That's what
12 Vasiljevic said here or, rather, stated here. That is correct, that Rade
13 Markovic said that he was made this offer of 100 of Arkan's Tigers and
14 that he took 30. That is correct.
15 As for not reacting or, rather, the president not reacting to
16 that, that is not true. He said and specifically issued an order to him
17 to find the minister of the interior and to convey his order precisely in
18 relation to that, that such things should not happen and that he should
19 clarify this with him and with Boca in Podujevo, and Arkan's who are here
20 too. That is what the president said unequivocally, and ordered him to
21 call the minister, find him as soon as possible and resolve this. And
22 Rade Markovic said that something was already under way and that they had
23 already withdrawn those who were already in Podujevo and now they would
24 regulate things as regards Kosovo Polje. That's the truth.
25 Q. Pause there --
1 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. Robinson.
2 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Milosevic.
3 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] In the transcript it says as if I
4 had issued an order to Markovic that he should reach some kind of
5 agreement with Arkan and Boca. That is not what the witness said. The
6 witness said something different. The witness said that I had ordered to
7 clarify the situation with these paramilitary formations that he had
8 mentioned, not that he should reach any kind of agreement with that.
9 That's not what the witness said. Perhaps you can ask the witness to
10 clarify a bit better what he was trying to say.
11 It says here to "clarify the situation." It's not for clarifying
12 the situation. On the contrary. To completely eliminate any possibility
13 of paramilitary formations. That's what the witness was saying.
14 MR. NICE: It's for the witness to say it, I think.
15 JUDGE ROBINSON: Let me ask the witness to say what he intended to
16 say, or what in fact he did say.
17 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, when that question was raised
18 at that meeting, the president addressed Rade Markovic and said to him
19 that these forces and these formations should be removed and that that
20 should be resolved as soon as possible, that he should find the minister
21 as urgently as possible, and that such groups should no longer exist
22 within the police. That is to say to do away with them, that such
23 formations and groups of people should not exist within the police. That
24 was the position of the president.
25 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Nice.
1 MR. NICE:
2 Q. Well, I'm not accepting that for one minute, because unless my
3 recollection is wrong, General Vasiljevic spoke from or had prepared a
4 statement with the benefit of notes. Unless I'm mistaken, you produced to
5 us no note of this really rather important 17th of May meeting?
6 A. I don't know what notes General Vasiljevic could offer you and
7 what he could have given you. If he gave you something, you probably have
8 it here. I'm telling you what happened at that meeting and that's exactly
9 the way it was.
10 Q. On any reckoning, this was an extremely important meeting with the
11 head of state. It has a preparatory meeting the day before. The topic is
12 crimes committed by the very army of your country. We'll see what was
13 said about numbers in a minute.
14 Was it really the way this accused ran affairs, that he would have
15 such an important meeting without any record of what was said being made?
16 A. Well, everybody wrote down for himself the tasks that he had said,
17 and at that level general positions are taken with regard to certain
18 matters. He said sufficiently clearly to Rade Markovic to have this
19 question resolved, and there was no need to write anything down after
20 that. It was clear to the man. I saw later that he conveyed that or,
21 rather, he discussed it with the minister. He told us to look into this
22 again, whether there were any such organisations, whether there was
23 anything bad within the military, and he gave explicit orders that not a
24 single foot of the land should be let go. For a soldier, that was
25 sufficient. That meant that we had to defend our borders towards Albania
1 and Macedonia fully. And he also said either prevent the -- any
2 infiltration of such forces, or if necessary, completely close the border
3 vis-a-vis on the Drina River so that we wouldn't have any complications
5 These are some of the very clear positions made by the president.
6 Q. I may come back to the question of notes in just a second or a
7 minute or so, but before I do, do you accept General Vasiljevic's account
8 that at the discussion the VJ -- the army's version, through Pavkovic, was
9 that although the army was suggesting 800 persons had been killed
10 improperly, the 3rd Army had established that this was not the case and
11 that there were responsibility somewhere for 271 people being killed? Do
12 you accept those figures were mentioned?
13 A. Yes, yes. Those figures were mentioned, about 200 something
14 persons killed that the military was aware of. And the military started
15 proceedings in order to prosecute the perpetrators, or had already
17 Q. And the MUP representation was not actually at the figure of 800,
18 as related by Pavkovic, but was at a figure of 326 persons. Do you accept
19 that MUP representatives put that figure forward?
20 A. Yes, yes, that's correct. Yes, that's the way it was.
21 Q. And it was then suggested that there should be an independent
22 commission to investigate VJ and MUP crimes. Pavkovic suggested that it
23 should be a state commission as a neutral body. Sainovic said that it
24 wasn't a bad idea to send a neutral body from Belgrade to Kosovo, but the
25 accused said nothing about it and gave no instructions in respect of it.
1 Is that correct?
2 A. That is not correct. This was referred to, but the president
3 afterwards issued an order that, first of all, this be dealt with, the
4 orders he gave to MUP and Rade Markovic, and that then they clear up the
5 problems they have in the MUP and then that the representatives of the
6 army and the MUP should meet and resolve these problems together about
7 this commission or some body that will resolve matters.
8 So first of all, that he should remove --
9 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... orders, please, to the MUP --
10 A. Oral orders. In front of all of us he said what I said.
11 Q. Anything in writing that you can point us to, apart from what may
12 be in Vasiljevic's contemporaneous notes, anything you can point us to in
13 writing supporting the suggestion that the accused behaved and reacted in
14 this constructive way?
15 A. Yes, there are orders, what we did straight away as far as the
16 army is concerned. As I've already said, General Ojdanic, while he was
17 still walking, was talking about intentions as to what we should do.
18 First of all, our most difficult task, our crucial task, most troublesome
19 task, most difficult task was to completely close the border towards
20 Albania and Macedonia. So that turned into certain orders.
21 Q. I'm concerned with the commission to investigate crimes committed
22 by the army and the MUP. Was there any order, oral or written, as you
23 would say, by this accused to establish a commission to investigate?
24 A. At that meeting he said that problems should be resolved first,
25 that we should carry out the task that we have, and that then we should
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 meet -- we should meet and we should try -- well, not try. We should
2 establish this commission, but first of all there should be a meeting
3 between the representatives of the MUP and the representatives of the army
4 and that that should be looked into.
5 Q. Well, I've made my point on the absence of written material
6 presently available to us subject to the Vasiljevic notes. And then just
7 this: We are dealing here, on any reckoning of this meeting, with 500 to
8 800 deaths. Would you like to tell us, please, how many of those crimes
9 have been solved, whether pursuant to the encouraged commission or
10 otherwise. How many of those 5 to 800 deaths have been solved as crimes?
11 A. I don't know. Very soon after that we were in a situation where
12 we had to withdraw from Kosovo and Metohija, and those investigations that
13 started could not be completed. The state of war was abolished, the
14 military conscripts were let go, and the proceedings that had started were
15 moved from the jurisdiction of the military to the jurisdiction of the
16 civilian courts. So I can not answer this Court. I don't know. But
17 General Gojovic testified here and I think he has this information because
18 Ojdanic ordered him to compile a complete list and to report on that after
19 this meeting. That's the order that General Ojdanic issued, that the head
20 of the legal department should ensure complete insight into all of this
21 or, rather, the commission of all crimes and the degree to which they've
23 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Nice, it's time for the break, but I have to
24 ask you how much longer you will -- you'll be.
25 MR. NICE: Obviously this is a witness, for several reasons, who I
1 will part from with many topics uncovered. I will try and finish
2 responsibly to my case, if I can, within half an hour. I've got a couple
3 of topics to cover.
4 JUDGE ROBINSON: But there is re-examination. Mr. Milosevic, how
5 long will you be in re-examination?
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, I'll try to fit into the
7 remaining time, the remaining half hour, although I would need more. But
8 I don't want to bring into question the witness's departure. But I would
9 like to draw your attention to the fact that I used three hours for the
10 examination-in-chief and so far Mr. Nice has used three hours and 45
12 JUDGE ROBINSON: That's quite true. Mr. Nice has exceeded your
13 time by about 40 minutes.
14 MR. NICE: Your Honour, yes. Of course it's not done on a
15 witness-by-witness basis, it's globally, and this is a witness who I'm
16 taking slowly and who is of obvious potential significance.
17 [Trial Chamber confers]
18 JUDGE ROBINSON: Well, Mr. Nice, when we return, you'll try and
19 finish as quickly as possible so that Mr. Milosevic can complete his
20 re-examination. Certainly not more than half an hour, although you know
21 that I am disinclined to insist on these time limits. But in the
22 interests of the witness's health, we must.
23 We will break for 20 minutes.
24 --- Recess taken at 12.44 p.m.
25 --- On resuming at 1.07 p.m.
1 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Nice.
2 MR. NICE:
3 Q. One other thing from the 17th of May meeting given in evidence by
4 General Vasiljevic, who was indeed speaking from notes, contemporaneous
5 notes, or with the assistance of. The accused did speak about Boca, or
6 Slobodan Medic, the leader of the Skorpions, didn't he?
7 A. Well, General Pavkovic spoke about that. He mentioned that. And
8 then Rade Markovic said that in that grouping -- group, some crimes had
9 been committed and that those units or the members of that unit had been
10 sent back, that they were no longer there. That's how I understood it.
11 Q. The position about that unit, which of course we're now more
12 familiar with having seen the video of what happened at -- or, rather,
13 after Srebrenica. What happened is that that unit committed serious
14 crimes on its first foray into Kosovo. People were killed. They -- but
15 they then returned again, didn't they, on a second time. They were
16 deployed a second time in Kosovo?
17 A. I don't know whether it was a second time. At that meeting, that
18 was not discussed. Now, I don't know whether there was a second time. I
19 know we were there the first time, or one time, and that on that occasion
20 when we discussed the issue, that it was said that they'd already been
21 returned. I don't believe that, after an order by the president, that
22 they could have returned.
23 Q. We've heard evidence about this from Vasiljevic that they killed
24 people on both occasions, the first and the second. As to the first
25 occasion, it's right, isn't it, because you've talked about prosecutions,
1 that no one from Boca's unit was prosecuted until after this accused had
2 left office in 2000. Correct?
3 A. I don't know that, whether they were prosecuted or not. They --
4 it was ordered that they all be punished and processed. That is what the
5 president ordered. Now, of the people who were there and who was there
6 and around Srebrenica, whether they were there or not, what you said, we
7 didn't know about that then. I mean, we don't know about that, and the
8 president ordered that they had to be punished and handed over to the
9 hands of justice.
10 Q. I don't accept that necessarily. He was very critical of them,
11 but in the event, as I suggest, they weren't -- not -- Boca was never
12 pursued for that first crime because he was absent at the time the men
13 were killing civilians, including children, but no one was prosecuted, I
14 must suggest, until after the accused left power. Right. And you don't
15 know about it.
16 I mean, you've come here to say you know a great deal about what
17 was happening in Kosovo, but I must suggest to you that whenever
18 anything's tricky, you don't know the answer. You don't know about the
19 bodies to Batajnica, you don't know about the prosecution of people in
20 Boca's unit, the Skorpions.
21 Do you know this: You've talked about Gojovic's documents, and I
22 would have taken you through them in detail if time wasn't pressing. Do
23 you accept, as we've discovered from Gojovic's documents, that there were
24 only about three people convicted in respect of murders arising from all
25 the events that happened on the territory of the former Yugoslavia --
1 sorry, on the territory of Kosovo? Do you accept there are only about
2 three people convicted?
3 A. Mr. Nice, I cannot accept anything linked to that subject matter.
4 I said that on the 10th of July we withdrew from Kosovo and that
5 everything that was started was handed over to the judicial organs, the
6 court organs, and with that the military service or the military police
7 had nothing more to do with it. Whether they were three individuals or
8 five individuals, I can't really say. It's not a question for you to ask
9 me. I don't know what the civilian courts did.
10 Q. Mr. Farkas, it is a question to be asked of you because you were
11 introduced by this accused as somebody who can tell us really all about
12 the prosecutions and how everything was done properly.
13 May the 17th, 5 to 800 people acknowledged as killed at the hands
14 of the police and the VJ. Gojovic's evidence I suggest to you shows at
15 most three people convicted, and we don't know whether they served their
16 sentences or anything like that yet. Are you in a position to point us to
17 any more than the three people convicted for murders shown by Gojovic? If
18 so, where, so we can find the records.
19 A. Well, I really can't seem to be able to convince, or can't
20 convince you of something that I didn't deal with. After the 10th of
21 July, as I said, we were withdrawing forces from the territory. We had
22 very many problems with all the movement going on and to conduct it in a
23 proper manner and we had vast problems. Now, what the courts did, the
24 civilian courts did afterwards, after that had been handed over to them, I
25 really don't know. All I do know is that during the war, that is to say
1 up until the time our forces were withdrawn from the territory of Kosovo
2 and Metohija, about 382 cases, different ones, of course, amongst them
3 were killings and rapes, they were prosecuted. And that, Mr. Nice, is
4 four and a half cases a day in the middle of a war, what the army did. Of
5 course, there were serious crimes amongst that. There was theft. There
6 was rape. There was killings too. What the army could do, it did. What
7 was in its power, it did.
8 Now, when the war situation came to an end, then this was done by
9 other means. How, I don't know. I had enough work to attend to myself
10 without being able to go into things like that.
11 Q. I was going too fast. The correction is three cases involving a
12 total of seven people, not three people, as I put to the witness, but it's
13 not going to draw any different answer.
14 Help us, please, with this: Fehmi Agani, famous and respected
15 civil rights person, was murdered, brutally murdered, in the course of
16 events following the bombing by NATO. And tell us about that. What do
17 you know about that?
18 A. Well, what I know about that is that the man was killed and that
19 the perpetrator was arrested, and I don't know anything after that. I do
20 know of that killing, that it took place. The press wrote about that and
21 I learnt it in other words, but with the presence of my forces I knew
22 about that event. I know that the person was arrested, the perpetrator
23 was arrested, and I know that he wasn't from our unit, from the army.
24 Q. He was a man called Djeletovic, wasn't he?
25 A. I don't know. I really can't remember.
1 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... we've heard about this, you
2 see, again from Vasiljevic who reported on all these things to you, and
3 the man Djeletovic was then eventually released by Andjelkovic, the leader
4 of the provisional council. Do you remember that?
5 A. If that is what Vasiljevic told you, then I'm sure he has evidence
6 and proof of that and knows about that. At my staff meetings with him, in
7 my meetings with him, we didn't discuss that. I suppose that he learnt
8 about that later on and then naturally told you.
9 Q. He told us that dealing with the release at the intervention of
10 Zoran Andjelkovic he said that he reported, on the basis of all those
11 events, to you. Did he? Because it would be important for you, wouldn't
12 it, to hand on that information to someone else. Did he report to you on
13 the -- please.
14 A. Well, not to report to me. It was common knowledge that the man
15 was killed and the other man arrested. So I don't know. And as I say, we
16 didn't deal with matters that didn't involve us except in cases where we
17 knew specifically and concretely that something had been done outside or,
18 rather, from within our competence. If the MUP did something, we would
19 report that to the MUP straight away, and I think there were several such
20 cases. And I don't know when the man was handed over over there what the
21 MUP and the courts did with that. I really can't say. I don't know.
22 So what did you say, that this man Djeletovic, if it was
23 Djeletovic, if he did that, that was just not the topic of my discussions
24 either with the service or what happened to people who were handed over
25 and given over to the justice system.
1 Q. One other topic arising from Gojovic's documents, which we looked
2 at on an earlier occasion. Izbica was, of course, a most notorious crime
3 that was published or was written about internationally at an earlier
4 stage, am I right? At a very early stage it was picked up by satellite
5 imagery and so on. Do you remember that?
6 A. Yes, I do know that that happened. I think a post-mortem was
7 conducted, that the people were buried and then exhumed. I don't know the
8 outcome of it all because --
9 Q. Go on.
10 A. Well, I don't know what happened next, what the outcome of the
11 autopsies was and what this indicated later on. And as soon as the court
12 organs begin functioning on a case, then the security service ceases its
13 work. What it does is the investigation stage and afterwards pursuant a
14 court order perhaps.
15 Q. You see, Mr. Farkas, this was a huge massacre, hundreds of people,
16 hundred or more people. Recorded in Gojovic's documents as perpetrators
17 unknown but in the army section as it were. Can you account for the fact
18 that a crime of this magnitude, which you had to investigate because the
19 international community already knew about it, can you account for the
20 fact that a crime of this magnitude goes unsolved, along with all the
21 other massacres, unsolved? Can you account for that?
22 A. I think that in Gojovic's documents it doesn't say that this was
23 done -- it says that the perpetrators were unknown, and it doesn't say
24 that they were members of the army but that the army came across mounds
25 and burial sites and then that's how the process started leading to the
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 exhumations and so on and so forth. So the claim that you could have seen
2 this from Gojovic's documents doesn't stand, that it was an army -- a
3 soldier who did this. The army came across this, they took note of the
4 crime that had been committed, and I'm very sorry that things like that
5 happened at all, that that was reported by the army as having persons
6 unknown as the perpetrators. That does not mean that the army committed
7 any such thing.
8 Q. Whoever it was accredited or put down, can you account, please,
9 because you were there, you visited the area you tell us - I don't know
10 whether you visited Izbica - can you explain why such a huge crime, with
11 all the resources of the army and police, goes undetected? Hmm?
12 A. What I can tell you is about the army, that's all. The army came
13 across the traces of those crimes, and it handed over the matter to the
14 legal organs and due process and note was taken. Now, later
15 investigations related to that probably, and I'm certain - because we
16 insisted upon certain things - we were not able to go back. So that was
17 put into the hands of the international forces. We couldn't go back to
18 Kosovo, so it was in the hands of them and the Albanian separatists with
19 the powers that be allowing them to be there. So the organs couldn't take
20 up the case, it was handed over to civilian structures, and they dealt
21 with it.
22 But as I say once again, for any -- I am very sorry that tragedies
23 of that kind happened, and I can state that the perpetrators should, of
24 course, be brought to justice. And I'm sure that if the abductions took
25 place, then the cause of death was established, but the army had no
1 competence and authority of going into investigations of that kind and
2 conducting court cases and investigations of that kind.
3 Q. I'm just going to test you on a couple of other matters, but
4 before I do, just tell us this: You know the various sites that are said
5 to have been the sites of crimes committed by the VJ or the MUP, or indeed
6 by paramilitaries in Kosovo. Were you present at any of those sites
7 yourself on material dates, on relevant dates?
8 A. No. I wasn't at any of the sites myself.
9 Q. Have you seen reports by the VJ, or indeed by the police but
10 principally by the VJ, have you seen reports into events happening at Bela
11 Crkva or places like that?
12 A. I don't know what happened or whether anything happened in Bela
13 Crkva. However, in the regular reports through the chain of command,
14 reports would reach the staff of the Supreme Command and that is where we
15 learnt about certain things, among others the Izbica case, where the army
16 came across things like that. So this daily report incorporated that and
17 that did reach the staff of the Supreme Command.
18 Q. And you realise, don't you, that on the Prosecution's case, it
19 will be for the Court to decide, we've got many cases of multiple murders,
20 none of them solved as crimes or even attempted to be solved as crimes by
21 either the VJ or the MUP. You appreciate that, don't you?
22 A. Well, certainly had at that been known to me when I was in that
23 position, I would certainly have been grateful to you for your assistance
24 to help us solve it, because orders of that kind existed. So quite
25 certainly, as from the competence and authority that the army had, I'm
1 sure that had they had specific concrete cases like that and had the whole
2 thing pointed to the army or the police, then the army would certainly
3 have taken steps to solve the case.
4 Q. Now, again you were introduced yesterday as somebody who had a
5 great deal of knowledge about these matters. Nobody could know more, it
6 was said, in respect to some aspects of them. The Dubrava prison complex
7 killings, tell us about that, please.
8 JUDGE ROBINSON: What aspects of it, Mr. Nice?
9 MR. NICE:
10 Q. Do you know anything about this? Let me ask you a more specific
11 question because time is very short. We know from evidence produced by
12 the Defence that a special police group or a special armed group went into
13 that prison on the 22nd of May, took it over at about 5.15 in the morning.
14 We have evidence from the survivors, many of them, that they were lined up
15 to be killed a quarter of an hour later, at 5.30.
16 What do you know from your position at the time or from what you
17 would have learnt in the commission of the VJ, what do you know about who
18 gave the order for that special group of armed men to go into Dubrava
20 A. Well, first of all, Mr. Nice, I'm a colonel general of the army of
21 Yugoslavia, not of the police. So that's one point. Linked to Dubrava
22 and to the circumstances of the bombing of Dubrava, Dubrava was a prison,
23 if I remember correctly, that something happened around that prison. You
24 will have to ask the people who were responsible down the chain of command
25 in the MUP about that. And it was under their purview and remit. So I
1 know that some bombings took place. I don't know anything else. Do you
2 claim that some soldiers were there, were present in the area? Is that
3 what you're saying?
4 Q. Armed presence that went in, a special armed presence at 5.15.
5 Help us, please, with this: From your general knowledge of government, to
6 take over a prison, would that be a decision that would have to be made at
7 the ministerial level?
8 A. Mr. Nice, these are legal matters, legal questions. You're asking
9 me about certain fields -- you'll ask me about medicine in a while. This
10 wasn't within the competence of my work. If it was, I would have attended
11 post-mortems and would be able to answer questions about them.
12 Q. You know nothing about that either. Just to deal with His Honour
13 Judge Bonomy's point, tab 10 of the VJ commission documents, coming for
14 the overhead projector and for the witness. I would have wanted him to
15 deal with a few more documents, but tab 10, I think, will do.
16 This is a document in respect of your commission. It's Exhibit
17 921, tab 10, and this document -- this tab has not yet been admitted. It
18 comes from Pavkovic. It's dated the 30th of April, 2002, and -- and this
19 may reflect His Honour Judge Bonomy's concerns of this morning. At order
20 point number 1 -- a bit further up the page, Mr. Prendergast, please:
21 "Establish an Expert Team of the Yugoslav Army General Staff according to
22 the temporary establishment ..." So that insofar as Pavkovic is ordering
23 that an expert team should an expert team of the General Staff of the army
24 as opposed to an expert team specifically of the commission, does that
25 agree with the evidence that you've been giving us yesterday and today?
1 A. Well, absolutely. At the very beginning I said that the
2 commission, pursuant to an order, was formed by the federal defence
3 minister, and later on you can see the date, which is almost a year
4 later. The Chief of the General Staff, through an order of his own and
5 from within his composition, that is to say the army, is setting up an
6 expert team in order to review combat operations.
7 Q. If we then, however, and my last topic, very short, turn over the
8 page, please, to paragraph 5, whoever's creature the expert team is, the
9 tasks of the expert team -- little bit further up the page -- are as
10 follows: "Monitoring and analysing documents and data from the
11 indictments of the Prosecutor ... against professional VJ members and
12 retired officers.
13 "Preparation of proposals for defence and rebuttal of allegations
14 in the indictments in the form of professional expert testimonies based on
15 documentation from VJ archives.
16 "Preparation of documentation regarding the events which took
17 place on the territory of Croatia and Bosnia and Kosovo ... during the
18 combat operations with the emphasis on documenting ... crimes of other
19 parties in the conflict, separately for every front, as per the
21 And then the last point in this document, "During trials analysing
22 and estimating the data in the possession of The Hague Tribunal Prosecutor
23 which may have a negative influence on the security of the country ..."
24 Now, that's what's described as the commission's role in this
25 document. Did you see any output -- sorry, the expert team's document --
1 function. Did you see any output from the expert team yourself?
2 A. No, I did not see any output. When the institution was
3 established and the Law on Cooperation with The Hague Tribunal passed,
4 then we, through -- first of all, through the Ministry of Justice, the
5 Federal Ministry of Justice and later on through the National Committee,
6 we communicated with The Hague Tribunal precisely in procuring certain
7 data pursuant to your requests. There was no output in detail. And of
8 course after war operations, an analysis is performed. That's quite
9 natural. In some cases, during combat, crimes did take place, and it is
10 quite natural that General Pavkovic compiled - and probably you'll find
11 this in detail in the order - as to who the members of the team were, I'm
12 sure that they are all active officers, army officers who are able to
13 collect information in a professional way and to set right the documents
14 in the archives, to put them in order, because they were dispersed all
15 over the place. They moved from day-to-day, and it was very difficult to
16 collect and put order into the archives.
17 MR. NICE: This is indeed my last question. Although, of course,
18 there are many topics outstanding. The Court will also find a similar
19 reflection of this particular construct of the expert committee in tab 8,
20 as already exhibited. I would diffidently repeat my request that the
21 Chamber might consider the advantage of adducing the collection of
22 documents, which came as a collection as a whole, but failing that, can I
23 ask for tab 10 to be produced because it deals with the point that His
24 Honour Judge Bonomy was particularly concerned about.
25 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes.
1 Mr. Milosevic.
2 Just give it a number for tab 10.
3 MR. NICE: Yes, the others have already been admitted, if we can
4 just add tab 10. Unless the Chamber takes favourably to my suggestion.
5 [Trial Chamber confers]
6 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic.
7 Re-examined by Mr. Milosevic:
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Let us clear up one matter first.
9 Mr. Nice provided a rather thick document dated the 22nd of October, 2003,
10 which includes various documents, such as a request to the National
11 Council for Cooperation with the ICTY of Serbia and Montenegro and the
12 witness --
13 MR. NICE: I'm happy for it to be produced but the witness claimed
14 no knowledge. I recited to him the one passage that related to the origin
15 of a document. He made his comment on it, and in line with the Court's
16 current practice, I decided not to press the matter.
17 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Milosevic. No reliance on this document
18 so you need not bother with it.
19 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] No, I'm not dealing with it at all.
20 I just wanted to find out whether Mr. Nice tendered it, and if yes, then I
21 would have objected. Since he didn't, it doesn't matter any more.
22 Let me just take one minute.
23 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
24 Q. General, we will go very briefly through a couple of matters
25 raised by Mr. Nice in cross-examination. He asked you whether you had
1 received, from January to March 1999, army reports or police reports. You
2 answered no because you occupied the position of deputy or assistant
3 minister of defence.
4 A. Correct.
5 Q. He concluded that you did not receive any information at all then.
6 Did you receive information from auxiliary subordinate organs of the
7 Ministry of Defence, regional organs?
8 A. Yes, of course. And the developments in the province were also
9 discussed at the senior staff meetings at the Ministry of Defence.
10 Q. Do -- are regional organs to be found in all municipalities of
11 Kosovo and Metohija?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Does the network of these regional organs cover the entire
14 territory and can it serve as a channel of normal information providing
15 for all -- concerning all developments?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Thank you. General, the issue of documents was raised here, but
18 I'll ask you one specific question only. Was the headquarters of your
19 service bombed during the NATO campaign?
20 A. Yes. My office was directly hit.
21 Q. On that occasion was your documentation damaged?
22 A. Yes. A large quantity of documentation was damaged. Part of it
23 was burnt. Part of it was scattered all over.
24 Q. Does that provide an answer to the question why it was not
25 possible to provide more documents, to introduce more documents through
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 your testimony?
2 A. Yes, certainly.
3 Q. You said your office was directly hit?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Thank you, General. Mr. Nice asked you questions about the event
6 in Paracin and the claim from the book of Ivan Stambolic that the army
7 made that up. Where does your knowledge about the events in Paracin come
9 A. I was chief of security of the relevant army, and 40 minutes after
10 that crime, I was on the spot. The bodies of those --
11 Q. That's what I wanted to hear. Did you personally, as chief of
12 security of the 2nd Army at the time on whose territory the Paracin
13 garrison was located, were you competent to find out what happened?
14 A. Yes, I conducted the pre-investigative work.
15 Q. So your knowledge about that event in Paracin that you testified
16 to, is it based on your personal experience and the action you took?
17 A. Absolutely.
18 Q. Was it, therefore, an organised group that was involved or a
19 mentally unstable individual?
20 A. An organised group of six.
21 Q. All right. Thank you, General. We're moving on to another
22 subject immediately. Mr. Nice provided you a document that was exhibited
23 which is an overview of the engagement of TO units of the Republic of
24 Serbia within the composition -- within the territory of the 1st Military
25 District. Do you remember seeing that document during cross-examination?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Please tell us, what did the 1st Military District include at that
3 time, that is in 1991, November?
4 A. The 1st Military District covered the central part of the country.
5 So its boundary in the west was the boundary of the former 7th Army, which
6 was included in the 1st Army district, according to the new administrative
7 division, and from Djerup [phoen], north of Paracin, all the way down to
8 Kosovo and Metohija.
9 Q. And to the west, geographically speaking?
10 A. Well, geographically speaking, I cannot draw the line exactly, but
11 it was somewhere from Virovitica. It followed that direction all the way
12 through Karlobag to the sea.
13 Q. To the sea. So did the 1st Military District cover a part of the
14 territory of Serbia, a part of the territory of Croatia, and part of
15 Bosnia and Herzegovina?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. So the 1st Military District was in no way located within the
18 administrative boundaries of any of the republics of the then SFRY?
19 A. The organisational structure of the army was designed not to
20 coincide with the administrative divisions of the country.
21 Q. All right. So the 1st Military District covered all these places
22 listed in the overview that have to do with Baranja, Eastern Slavonia, et
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. All right. Now, please tell us, did the republic or, rather,
1 republican authorities, have any competencies in terms of command and
2 control over the Territorial Defence?
3 A. No. The armed forces were unified and were under the command of
4 the federal secretary for national defence.
5 Q. Did the republic or province authorities -- no. Let us take it
6 this way: Was there a Vojvodina TO staff?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Was there a Serbia TO staff?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Was there a Kosovo TO staff?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Who appointed their commanders?
13 A. The federal secretary.
14 Q. Did the Republic of Serbia, or let's take Vojvodina, for example,
15 did they have any authority to appoint TO Staff Commanders for Serbia or
16 Vojvodina respectively?
17 A. No.
18 Q. Did they have authority to exert command over those forces?
19 A. No. Command was single. They had no authority of that kind.
20 Q. In the specific case or, rather, the specific time to which this
21 overview relates, did those -- were those TO units under JNA command or
22 under any command of the Republic of Serbia?
23 A. They were exclusively under the command of the Yugoslav People's
25 Q. Thank you, General. Mr. Nice asked you if you knew that I had
1 removed Kosovo from the agenda in Dayton. Do you know that Kosovo never
2 featured on the Dayton agenda?
3 A. Yes. As far as I know, that's correct.
4 Q. Thank you. Mr. Nice claimed that all those who were appointed at
5 that time just before the war and during the war were Serbs. What is your
6 ethnicity, General?
7 A. I am an ethnic Hungarian.
8 Q. Thank you. Questions were asked --
9 MR. NICE: Your Honour, that's not what I asked. Of course I know
10 this witness is ethnic Hungarian. It's well recorded in many documents,
11 not least the SDC records where the accused speaks about him. What I
12 asked was whether those who this witness appointed in the tabs that he
13 produced were Serbs, and the answer to that was, clearly, yes.
14 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. Proceed. Proceed, Mr. Milosevic.
15 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. General, Mr. Nice produced to you an enactment that was sent by
17 the department for defence of Pristina addressed to you personally.
18 Sector for civilian defence, General Geza Farkas. Do you remember that
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Do you have it in front of you?
22 A. No, I don't.
23 Q. They say here at the beginning: "We asked the command of the 3rd
24 Army to provide us with weapons and ammunition for all units for -- that
25 the authorities in Kosovo and Metohija are establishing and developing,
1 namely detachments of Territorial Defence, communications units, civilian
2 protection --"
3 JUDGE KWON: Exhibit 248.
4 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Is this a reference exclusively to legal authorities that exist in
6 keeping with the law, civilian defence, civilian protection,
7 communications units, et cetera?
8 A. Absolutely. And for all of them there existed appropriate
9 establishment, materiel and personnel.
10 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, avoid leading questions.
11 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I don't know whether it's a leading
12 question if I ask that the units of civilian defence, civilian protection
13 and communications units were legal units envisaged by the law. I am
14 asking the witness whether the law envisages such units.
15 JUDGE ROBINSON: Let's move on.
16 JUDGE KWON: I don't think this is the document on the screen.
17 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. It goes on to say -- it says: "The said weaponry will be
19 exclusively kept in depots of the army of Yugoslavia," and then I won't go
20 on reading any more, but it enumerates which depots of the army of
22 A. Yes. It was regulated that way.
23 Q. Does that mean that that weaponry requested for those legal units
24 would not even be issued to them without an appropriate order that can
25 follow only if necessary?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. Does it say in the last paragraph: "We emphasise that execution,
3 distribution and issue to individual military conscripts --"
4 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreters cannot follow this without the
6 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Milosevic, the interpreters are having
7 difficulty following it without the document.
8 Mr. Prendergast, can you locate the --
9 JUDGE KWON: The last paragraph. Last page. Next page. The
10 first paragraph there. Yes, I think that's it.
11 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. General Farkas, is it clear that these orders would be issued only
13 in the event that mobilisation plans are put into effect, that are subject
14 to verification by the defence department?
15 A. Yes, that's precisely the way it was regulated.
16 Q. Mr. Nice asked why in that case civilian population receives such
18 A. Well, we can see from this order that civilian population receives
19 weapons only in case of mobilisation.
20 Q. Tell me, in the event of mobilisation, does this civilian
21 population cease to be civilian population?
22 A. Absolutely. They are military conscripts, and once they are
23 mobilised, they become members of the army.
24 Q. Now, tell me, since Mr. Nice asked you if you meant to say -- or,
25 rather, if these people who are mobilised were prone to hatred and
1 animosity, whether that would be dangerous to mobilise them, what is your
2 opinion? Were they imbued with hatred towards Albanians?
3 A. No. They did not hate Albanians, and we did not have any cases
4 where such people would react in that way within the system of command and
5 control over them.
6 Q. General, tell me, is there any enactment, regulation, or rule or
7 principle according to which local population would not be subject to
9 A. On the contrary. There is a legal requirement by category of
10 population, by age group, by professional training, et cetera, who should
11 be mobilised.
12 Q. Is it a rule that civilian protection and civilian defence units
13 draw their personnel through mobilisation precisely from local population?
14 A. Yes. That is a basic principle of civilian protection and
15 defence. The people engaged there should know well the area where they
17 JUDGE ROBINSON: So if I understand you, Colonel General, that
18 rule was not a new one.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. It's not a rule. This is from
20 the law where the material obligations and the work obligations of the
21 population are regulated. So this is where the civilian population
22 participates. In the first two, they are mobilised as a priority into the
23 army, into the units of the MUP, and the units of the civilian protection.
24 As for the rest, the military-aged able-bodied population, for example, to
25 civil defence.
1 JUDGE ROBINSON: That law existed before the war?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. Yes. On the basis of that Law
3 on Defence, the formations were developed and this entire structure that
4 we refer to here was all done on the basis of that law.
5 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. Mr. Milosevic, yes.
6 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. General, Mr. Nice claimed that the police of the Republic of
8 Serbia was militarised. As an educated, trained general, can you confirm
9 that position of his that the police in Serbia was militarised?
10 A. Well, I even asked him what he meant by that. I cannot confirm
12 Q. Mr. Nice showed you some document of the government of the
13 Republic of Serbia and Montenegro, and he claimed that there is no
14 institution called the Supreme Command Staff. Did somebody just invent
15 the Supreme Command Staff or, in wartime, is the General Staff actually
16 the body that grows into the Supreme Command Staff?
17 A. Yes, that's it. With the reduction in the personnel of the
18 General Staff, in peacetime there are more people on the staff, and in
19 wartime there's less people involved, so then there is the establishment
20 of the General Staff in the war. And then when there is a state of war,
21 it is no longer called the General Staff, it is called the Supreme
23 Q. The Supreme Command Staff.
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. Supreme Command Staff. Is that something that somebody invented
1 or is it based on regulations?
2 A. It's based on regulation. And all documents during the course of
3 the war have these exact headings and signatures and this has become part
4 of documentation on a regular basis.
5 Q. I'm not going to go into the background of what was written in
6 this document quoted by Mr. Nice, I just wanted us to establish whether
7 this was an invented institution, the Supreme Command Staff.
8 General, they also put questions to you about the Joint Command.
9 You said this was a form of coordination. I'm not going to ask you
10 anything else about that, but this form of coordination, did it in any way
11 infringe upon the singleness of the chain of command in the army of
13 A. In no way did it do so. Quite simply, it is not possible for it
14 to infringe upon the chain of command. That is quite clear. It was quite
15 simply impossible for something like that to happen, especially not in
17 Q. All right. General, Mr. Nice mentioned, in connection with
18 General Vasiljevic's testimony, that representatives of the military at
19 that meeting held in my office on the 17th of March gave information about
20 some 800, and you said that the representatives of the military were
21 talking about 200 something and the police about 300 something. Did
22 anybody refer to this figure of 800?
23 A. No. At that meeting only these two figures were mentioned; 200
24 something committed by our side, and 300 something was what the police
1 Q. In position -- or, rather, what was said what should be done with
2 the persons who perpetrated these crimes?
3 A. It was said unequivocally that they should be arrested momentarily
4 and that they should be brought before a court of law without any delays.
5 That was your position and your order.
6 Q. All right. You said towards the end of your answer, when you were
7 responding to questions pertaining to General Gojovic's material, that
8 Ojdanic immediately ordered General Gojovic to establish to what level the
9 procedure had come. You weren't clear enough. What procedure were you
10 referring to in relation to these crimes that had been committed?
11 A. Well, the procedure in terms of where the cases actually were.
12 Quite simply, for Gojovic to make an overview as to how many crimes of
13 this kind do we know of and where are these cases, and what stage of
14 resolution are they in? Are they still in the state of investigations or
15 pre-investigation or have they come to trial or have judgements already
16 been passed? If not belonging to our own jurisdiction, have they been
17 handed over to the judiciary?
18 Q. All right. Irrespective of the stage involved, in all these
19 variants that you referred to just now, was this a procedure of criminally
20 prosecuting the perpetrators of crimes in Kosovo and Metohija?
21 A. Absolutely. That is what the point of all of it was, to make an
22 analysis of this kind and then to encourage the fastest possible
23 resolution of those problems.
24 MR. NICE: I don't know if the accused is finished, but there is
25 just one point: The document he was referring to, which is the filing of
1 Serbia and Montenegro, I haven't asked for it to be admitted because, of
2 course, it's already before the Court, but he misrepresented what the
3 document said. It didn't deny the existence of the Supreme Command Staff
4 but it denied the existence of the Supreme Command and dealt with the way
5 the word "Supreme Command Staff" may have been used.
6 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. Mr. Milosevic.
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I have to say that I don't
8 understand this. What is being denied? What is not being denied? I
9 clearly put a question to the general whether somebody invented the word
10 "Supreme Command Staff" or whether it was based on regulations and he
11 gave an answer to that.
12 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
13 Q. General, Mr. Nice put questions to you in relation to some alleged
14 statement before a court of law of the former chief of state security,
15 Radomir Markovic, that there was some meeting held in my office and that
16 orders were given to remove bodies. Do you know that Radomir Markovic
17 never gave such a statement before a court of law?
18 MR. NICE: No. That's not an admissible form of question and
19 indeed I think I prefaced my questioning about this with the circumstances
20 before this Court.
21 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes, Mr. Milosevic, the last question not
22 permissible. Ask another question, or reformulate it.
23 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] All right, if it's not permissible.
24 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Do you know, on the basis of everything that was published in this
1 respect, that Radomir Markovic denied this assertion made by Mr. Nice when
2 he testified under oath here and when he testified in Belgrade and before
3 the committee of the parliament of Yugoslavia?
4 A. I'll have to remember now, but as for the previous things you
5 mentioned before the Assembly and the Court, I think that's correct. I
6 cannot remember exactly all the things that he stated here.
7 Q. Do you know his statements that he had been tortured and that the
8 other side had given him promises?
9 A. I know about that.
10 MR. NICE: [Previous translation continues] ... just remind the
11 Court, the issue of this statement is to be dealt with by this Court on
12 the basis of evidence given by Markovic himself but also by those who took
13 the statement, and who both have been before the Court, and I don't see
14 how these questions can do anything to help the Court at the moment and
15 probably they're irrelevant and inadmissible.
16 JUDGE ROBINSON: Yes. I agree, Mr. -- I fully agree,
17 Mr. Milosevic. Move on to another question. In any event, we are past
18 the time for adjournment, so bring your re-examination to a close as
19 quickly as possible, bearing in mind the health of the witness.
20 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you. I have concluded. Thank
21 you, I have concluded, Mr. Robinson.
22 Thank you, General.
23 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you, Mr. Milosevic.
24 Let me just say that the document tendered by Mr. Nice at the end
25 of cross-examination is admitted as Exhibit 921, tab 10.
1 Colonel General, that concludes your testimony. Thank you for
2 attending at The Hague to give it, and you may now leave.
3 We are adjourned until tomorrow, 9.00 a.m.
4 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 2.05 p.m.
5 to be reconvened on Friday, the 11th day
6 of November, 2005, at 9.00 a.m.