International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 9120

1 Tuesday, 19 November 2002

2 [Open session]

3 [The accused entered court]

4 --- Upon commencing at 9.04 a.m.

5 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Good morning to everybody. Please be seated.

6 Anything to be discussed before the witness enters the courtroom? The

7 Defence is prepared to show the witness his name that we have it as

8 evidence, then let us hear the case, please.

9 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning. This is Case Number IT-97-24-T, the

10 Prosecutor versus Milomir Stakic.

11 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: And the appearances, please.

12 MR. KOUMJIAN: Good morning, Your Honours. Nicholas Koumjian with

13 Ruth Karper for the Prosecution.

14 MR. LUKIC: Good morning, Your Honours. Branko Lukic and Danilo

15 Cirkovic for the Defence.

16 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. May I ask the usher to escort the

17 witness in the courtroom, please.

18 [The witness entered court]

19 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Good morning. You can hear me in a language you

20 understand, Witness DA?

21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good morning. Yes, I can hear you

22 very well.

23 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: We can proceed, and the floor is yours.

24 MR. LUKIC: I would first like and ask the usher to show the

25 witness his name so he can confirm.

Page 9121

1 WITNESS: WITNESS DA [Resumed]

2 [Witness answered through interpreter]

3 Examined by Mr. Lukic: [Continued]

4 Q. [Interpretation] Witness, please tell us if it is your name on

5 this sheet of paper.

6 A. It is, yes. It is, yes.

7 MR. LUKIC: [In English] Can this be marked an exhibit for the

8 Defence, please.

9 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: [Microphone not activated]

10 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]

11 Q. Mr. DA, can we resume?

12 A. Yes, yes, we can.

13 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Can the interpreters hear the

14 witness?

15 THE INTERPRETER: Yes, they can, although they have a lot of noise

16 in their headphones.

17 MR. LUKIC: [In English] Can we proceed?

18 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Let's try.

19 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]

20 Q. Witness DA, yesterday, we broke off at the time when you were

21 describing to us how you had been beaten and how a neighbour of yours had

22 saved your life. What happened after the 22nd of April, 1992? Did

23 you -- were you mobilised in some way?

24 A. I must ask you for something because -- for a correction. Before

25 the 22nd of April, can I tell you what happened on the 26th of May --

Page 9122

1 March, excuse me. May I?

2 Q. Yes, of course.

3 A. When I returned from the prison for the second time, on the 26th

4 of March, 1992, the Croatian forces crossed -- that is, the Sava River

5 near Sijekovac where the population is mixed. Muslims, Croats, Serbs.

6 And with the HVO's help, that is, with the help of Bosnian Muslims and

7 Croats, they surrounded that village and butchered the civilian

8 population. Over 20 civilians were slain on their doorsteps, and I am

9 sure that other witnesses will be able to tell you more about it because

10 they had gone through that and survived that. The media in Bosanski Brod

11 reported that those were Chetniks, that all the slain people were

12 Chetniks. So that on the 27th of March, 1992, the presidency of Bosnia

13 and Herzegovina headed by Mr. Fikret Abdic, Franjo Boras, Mr., and Mrs.

14 Biljana Plavsic came to visit that village, and saw on the spot and saw

15 with their own eyes the scale of the massacre committed there, over

16 innocent civilians, children, and old people.

17 Television Sarajevo, Sarajevo television and Jutel television

18 covered that event, but it was then and never again. After that,

19 representatives of religious communities came, Bishop Kacavenda,

20 Archbishop of Zvornik and Tuzla, Archbishop Vinko Puljic, Reso Elimar

21 [phoen], Jusuf Jakubovski [phoen], that is Selimovski, I'm sorry,

22 Selimovski, to try to calm down the tension. However, it did not help.

23 The fighting went on. There was fighting in the direction of Serb

24 villages, and what happened after that, we who were blocked in the town,

25 in Bosanski Brod, the military command ordered all of us to report to

Page 9123

1 certain places. And I did that. My meeting point was the Unema [phoen]

2 Warehouse. We reported there. Our names were taken down. We were about

3 350, I think. I mean, I'm just making a guess, but I believe we were

4 350. Around 350. We were told that we had to turn up every morning at

5 7.00 for the lineup, and we were used as labour, for the hardest types of

6 manual labour.

7 And as the front was advancing towards Serb villages, we were

8 ordered to dig trenches along the frontlines for the Croatian army so that

9 a number of inmates were killed, and there are documents to attest to

10 that, as they dug the trenches on the frontline.

11 Q. Do you know something about the attack on the village of Lijeska,

12 and do you personally have anything to do with that?

13 A. Yes. As the front was advancing towards Serb villages, they took

14 us by night. They made us climb up on to the flat roofs to look how Serb

15 houses were burning, and that was sheer horror. I mean, you know where

16 your brother's, your parents' house are, where somebody else's houses are.

17 And you see them ablaze and you don't know what is happening. The troops

18 were pulling out, and the civilians were also withdrawing with them. In

19 that village you were asking me about, my father had stayed behind there.

20 He was 85 years old at the time. I'm sorry.

21 He had been bedridden for five years. His grandchildren are both

22 Serbs and Croats. The Croatian army, the 108th, found him in the house.

23 He was shot dead, and he burned together with his house. An old man, 85,

24 ill, treated in Slavonski Brod five times, underwent surgery three times,

25 and he wrote about him that he was a Chetnik. And thus eliminated him in

Page 9124

1 the most brutal way imaginable.

2 Q. Can we go on, Mr. DA?

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. Until when were you under the labour obligation?

5 A. The order to report to the army command was issued sometime in the

6 early days of May, or late April. I can't remember the exact date. But

7 this order exists. I stayed there until the beginning of September. I

8 was a member of this labour brigade. But let's make things clear. It was

9 called a labour brigade, but it was a camp. Let me just tell you this

10 briefly in two sentences. We had no food. They did not treat us as human

11 beings, but as livestock, as beasts. There was nowhere to wash. There

12 was no toilet. We tried to somehow make do when we worked out in the

13 fields. We pulled out some roots, that is, carrots, potatoes, onions. We

14 had to hide them because that was the only food that we had. And a

15 soldier guarding us, even Brizic's son, if he found a carrot hidden

16 somewhere on our bodies, then such a person remembered well, the son of

17 Ivan Brizic.

18 Q. Were you beaten as you worked there?

19 A. Every morning when we would line up, Ivan Brizic's son, I do

20 not know his name, but I know the dad very well, he had a whip and beat us

21 in circles. It was the place for physical culture, and he used this whip

22 to beat us. I still have marks, scars, on my head because my skin had

23 split. We had absolutely no health care, feverish, full in wounds [as

24 interpreted] without the change of clothes. Unwashed, unfed. That is

25 what our life was like.

Page 9125

1 Q. Did any of the inmates die when -- during the digging of the

2 trenches?

3 A. Yes. I can't remember his name, but one can find it in documents,

4 there is also their order establishing the death of an inmate during the

5 trench digging. And may I also add that it was terribly difficult it --

6 better description.

7 MR. LUKIC: [In English] I would like the usher to show the witness

8 a document.

9 Your Honour, those documents are not translated. They are on our

10 list, and they have been submitted for the translation.

11 THE INTERPRETER: Your Honour, the interpreters do not have the

12 copies at all.

13 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Sorry. May I just interrupt. First, the

14 Prosecution wanted to take the floor. Please.

15 MR. KOUMJIAN: Normally Your Honour, we show the exhibit to the

16 other side before it's presented to the witness. And we never received

17 copies of this, it's hard to --

18 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: We also would prefer to see the documents

19 first. And then may they be copied for the translation booth. Maybe

20 Defence counsel can proceed with other questions when they are copied.

21 MR. KOUMJIAN: Your Honour, if I could just state our position on

22 this. For this week and these witnesses, we have no objection to doing it

23 whatever way is most convenient for the Defence because of our general

24 position about the relevance of this testimony. But we hope that when we

25 get to other witnesses in the future, that we will have exhibits before

Page 9126

1 the witness testifies translated so that we can take a position on them.

2 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: There is no doubt --

3 MR. LUKIC: We have copies for Your Honours and for the Registrar

4 here, only they are not translated so that's why --

5 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: If you could please present them to the

6 translation booths.

7 MR. LUKIC: Okay. Just give me one moment.

8 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May these documents be marked provisionally D31,

9 the one dated 14th of June, 1992. And the other dated 10 August 1992,

10 D32. But we decide as usual only on the admission of these in evidence

11 after we have heard the translation.

12 May we ask the witness to be so kind and read out these documents.

13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Am I to stand up?

14 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]

15 Q. No, sit down.

16 A. "HVO, the command of the 102nd Bosnian Brigade, Municipality of

17 Odzak."

18 Q. Just go on.

19 A. "Number 153/92".

20 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreters still do not have copies of

21 this document.

22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] "On the 14th of June, 1992 --"

23 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May I ask you to stop for a moment. The

24 photocopies have not yet arrived with the booths. It's the usher's first

25 day in the courtroom.

Page 9127

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Page 9128

1 MR. KOUMJIAN: Your Honour, does counsel have extra copies for the

2 Court and for the Prosecution?

3 MR. LUKIC: Your Honours, we have only one extra copy for the

4 Chamber.

5 [Trial Chamber confers]

6 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]

7 Q. You can start, Mr. DA, with this.

8 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreters do not have the copy.

9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] "At your request, number

10 13/8/01/95/3292 we hereby prove to the public security station to take an

11 inmate from the military prison, Goran Panic and Mladin Sumar from

12 Brusnica. The detainees are taken in order to clear the mine fields in

13 Gornji Svilaj. Upon the completion of this task, the inmates shall be

14 returned to the military prison. The inmates should be handed over

15 against the appropriate documentation. Made in four copies. Sent to.

16 Written by, initials AM/OG. Sent to the public security station, the

17 military police, the military prison, and a copy for the files. Ivica

18 Matanovic, commander."

19 Q. Can you please turn the page.

20 THE INTERPRETER: Can please the counsel switch on his microphone.

21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] "The Republic of Croatia, the

22 command of the SAM/MOT battalion, number 81/92/01. File number

23 1099/01/92/93. Novo Selo, 10 August 1992. To the military police of the

24 101st Bosanski Brod Brigade, the Crisis Staff of Bosanski Brod

25 Municipality: Report on 9 August, 1992, at 10.30. While digging trenches

Page 9129

1 on the reserve frontline, Spasoje Krsic was killed by a mortar shell.

2 68th battalion of the military police, the 3rd detachment of the

3 independent motorised battery commandant of the independent motorised

4 battery, Zdravko Lukanovic, stamped." Yes, these are confirmations that

5 the inmates were taken to dig trenches, and that they were killed while

6 digging trenches unfortunately.

7 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you, Witness DA, for reading out these

8 provisionally marked documents as 31, 32. Objections by the

9 Prosecutions to the authenticity?

10 MR. KOUMJIAN: No, Your Honour.

11 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May I ask ex officio the Defence, is this the

12 best possible copy available or do you have the original?

13 MR. LUKIC: [In English] Your Honour, we can ask the witness

14 because he provided these documents to us. He is the head of some

15 organisation, and they collected those documents. He can maybe explain

16 how he got those documents. And if I may, I can ask him.

17 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Please do so before we decide on this.

18 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]

19 Q. Witness DA, did you see these documents before? How did you come

20 by these documents?

21 A. When it comes to documents, after the fall of Bosanski Brod and

22 Odzak, when the Serbs returned those territories, the Croatian army left

23 these documents behind, not only these documents, there are more of them.

24 We have collected these documents, and we are in their possession.

25 Q. Do you maybe have the original of this document? Can you maybe

Page 9130

1 check whether you have it?

2 A. I cannot say that for a fact, but this is a photocopy of the

3 document, so this means that the original should exist. The evidence has

4 remained, the original evidence has remained.

5 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. These documents are admitted into

6 evidence as D31, D32 respectively.

7 MR. LUKIC: [In English] If I may ask the usher, sorry, to show the

8 witness the next document. This is for the translation booth, for the

9 Chambers, for the witness, and for the Prosecution.

10 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]

11 Q. Can you please put your glasses on, Mr. DA, because I'm going to

12 ask you to read this document as well. Please start reading, and if you

13 can do it a bit faster.

14 A. May I? "HVO, the command of the 102 Brigade, Bosanska Posivina,

15 number 61/92, the 28th of May, 1992. The order for the chief of medical

16 staff and the commander of the military prison. 1, it is hereby ordered

17 to the chief of the medical staff to carry out the medical examination and

18 to provide medical care for the following inmates: One, Alexander

19 Stanisic. Two, Oliver Ostojic. Three, Dusan Vijic, who are currently in

20 the Strolit prison. The commander of the prison is hereby ordered to

21 provide better food, warmer clothes for the aforementioned inmates, and to

22 discontinue any physical ill treatment. The aforementioned measures are

23 undertaken because these inmates are being prepared for exchange. Sent to

24 the chief of the medical staff, to the commander of the military post, the

25 commander of the prison. For the files. Commander, Ivica Matanovic.

Page 9131

1 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Any objections, especially to the authenticity?

2 MR. KOUMJIAN: No, Your Honour.

3 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Admitted into evidence, D33.

4 MR. LUKIC: [In English] I would like the usher to distribute the

5 next.

6 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May I ask Defence counsel how long do you intend

7 to proceed? Yesterday you announced that you would need another 15

8 minutes.

9 MR. LUKIC: When we made our plan for the examination of these

10 witness, we had in mind that we have to finish on Wednesday. And --

11 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I think it was clear enough yesterday.

12 MR. LUKIC: We'll try our best to finish in the next 15, 20

13 minutes, Your Honour.

14 Q. [Interpretation] Can you again please put your glasses on. You

15 don't have to read the names. Can you please just describe this document

16 to us.

17 A. This is a list for the exchange of women and children. The list

18 contains the names of 50 women and 50 children. The list was prepared for

19 the exchange on the 4th of July, 1992, in the Odzak school camp. My

20 question here is, what international law says that women and children may

21 be prisoners of war? And these women and children were in our group.

22 Q. Did you find this together with other documents?

23 A. Yes.

24 MR. LUKIC: [In English] [Previous translation continues] ... in

25 evidence, Your Honour.

Page 9132

1 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Objections as to authenticity?

2 MR. KOUMJIAN: No, Your Honour.

3 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Admitted into evidence, D34.

4 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]

5 Q. Please start reading this document.

6 A. Yes. "To the command of the rear echelon, Bosanski Brod

7 Sijekovac, to whom it may concern: It is hereby confirmed that the

8 intervention platoon for Zagreb has the right to bring in the following

9 females: Andja Novakovic, and Petra Nisic, on behalf of the males. The

10 persons should be brought in at 1800 hours. These persons will sleep in

11 the basement of the facility. In case they resist, you are allowed to use

12 force. Commander Ahmet Causevic."

13 And the second document: "To the command of the rear echelon,

14 Sijekovac, Bosanski Brod, to whom it may concern: It is hereby confirmed

15 that the intervention platoon from Sijekovac may bring in the following

16 females, Dragica Mijatovic and Grozda Petrovic on behalf of the males.

17 The persons will be brought in in the evening, and they will be released

18 to their homes in the morning. The persons will spend the night in the

19 basement. In case of resistance, you are allowed to use force.

20 Commander, Ahmet Causevic." And I'm sure that other witnesses will

21 describe what happened. It is their document again.

22 MR. LUKIC: [In English] Can this be marked, Your Honour.

23 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Objections?

24 MR. KOUMJIAN: Your Honour, I have no objections today to any of

25 the documents. Thank you.

Page 9133

1 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Admitted into evidence, D35.

2 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]

3 Q. What is the name of the organisation that you have founded?

4 A. It is an association of prisoners of war and inmates of Srpski

5 Bosanski Brod. It is a nongovernmental organisation, nonpartisan

6 organisation, and its members are all those who were imprisoned in the

7 camps in Bosanski Brod. And there were over ten of them. Over 2.000

8 women, children, and elderly people were incarcerated in the camps in

9 Bosanski Brod. I must say that many have died taking the truth with them

10 to their graves. 21 inmates from only one village have died so far.

11 Q. You have also compiled some documents in that organisation of

12 yours. I'm going to show you the documents. You don't have to read

13 them. Can you just confirm for the Chamber how these documents were

14 compiled, and whether they are truthful to the best of your knowledge.

15 MR. LUKIC: [In English] Could the usher distribute.

16 Q. [Interpretation] This document on which it says "Annex, 9.14," and

17 starting with page 4, it contains photographs. What does this document

18 describe?

19 A. This document was compiled based on authentic statements by the

20 families of the civilians, Muslims, Serbs, and Croats, who have perished.

21 So this is an authentic document on the suffering of the civilians in

22 Sijekovac. Among whom there were also Muslims, Mustafa Kovacevic, Mustafa

23 Alic. There are also Croats. Ivan Rudes.

24 Q. Do you know why these Muslims and Croats were killed? Do you

25 know?

Page 9134

1 A. Mustafa Kovacevic and the other Kovacevic were killed because

2 they helped the Serbs to remain alive, not to be killed. And that was the

3 only reason why they were killed. At the time, in 1992, helping a Serb

4 and a member of the orthodox religion to stay alive by any Croat equalled

5 an act of heroism. And because they helped the innocent people, they were

6 killed by their own. Gentlemen, here you can see on page 11 the one photo

7 but last is the photo of my father, 85 years of age my father was. He has

8 more Croat grandchildren than Serb grandchildren, but still he was slain

9 in the most atrocious way.

10 MR. LUKIC: [In English] Your Honour, can this exhibit be marked,

11 please.

12 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Admitted into evidence, D36.

13 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]

14 Q. This document which shows -- which says "Annex 1.17" on page 1,

15 what this document about?

16 A. This document was compiled by us, and it speaks of a group of

17 recruits, members of the Yugoslav People's Army, who came as young men who

18 had just joined the army to complete their compulsory military service.

19 So the first days of their army service were in Bosanski Brod. They were

20 not trained, and they were captured in the Koliba sector. They were

21 brought in. Among them was the father of a recruit who had come to save

22 his son from that army. Here is the evidence proving that these soldiers,

23 these recruits, were alive when they were captured by the Croatian army.

24 Those who were of Croat, Albanian, and Muslim ethnic background were sent

25 home. And the lot of the others is not known until this very day. Until

Page 9135

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Page 9136

1 this very day, it is not known where the father of this recruit is. His

2 destiny is also unknown. The Croatian authorities were asked to tell us

3 where the graves of these young men are; however, they do not admit

4 anything. There is, however, a videotape showing these young men with

5 their arms in the air. That showed that they surrendered, but their lot

6 is not known. It is not known until this very day where their graves are.

7 A mass grave is being dug up these days in Slavonski Brod, so we

8 assume that their remains may be found there.

9 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Witness DA, may I ask you, here we can read

10 "Annex 1.17." Annex to what, please?

11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It is an annex to the criminal

12 report for genocide and aggression on the Republic of Bosnia and

13 Herzegovina by the Croatian army, and that crime was committed on the 3rd

14 of March, 1992, and that is when the war started in Bosnia and

15 Herzegovina. On the 3rd of March, 1992, in Bosanski Brod.

16 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: And this was compiled by your nongovernmental

17 organisation, too?

18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. It is a nongovernmental

19 organisation, and the answer is yes.

20 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you.

21 MR. LUKIC: [In English] Can this be marked, Your Honour.

22 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: It's a little bit difficult because normally we

23 don't admit an annex without having the entire document. Maybe it's only

24 to be understood in the entire context, but under the present

25 circumstances, it is admitted into evidence as number D37.

Page 9137

1 MR. LUKIC: Your Honour, we may provide you with the main document

2 as well. But on that document, there are basically only the names of the

3 persons who committed those crimes. So I don't know if you are interested

4 in having that one.

5 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I think it might be interesting for the

6 Prosecution if they don't have this document already for the alleged

7 crimes committed there.

8 MR. LUKIC: They do have all those documents and the main

9 document, Your Honour. It has been submitted to them, I guess, a year

10 ago.

11 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you.

12 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]

13 Q. As we are distributing the next document, can you tell us who was

14 in power in Bosanski Brod as of the 3rd of March, 1992?

15 A. As of the 3rd of March, 1992, the power in Bosanski Brod was held

16 by the military. The HDZ and the SDA had played a major part in that.

17 The military -- there were very many changes in this military government.

18 The first one was Mirko Jelinic. And then some people from Zagreb came

19 and replaced him. The so-called HOS. Then they brought in Mr. Gahic.

20 Then Ivan Brizic was also there so that they changed people in responsible

21 positions, but it was by and large the military rule under the command and

22 the jurisdiction of the Croatian army.

23 Q. And the Serbs in Bosanski Brod, were they armed?

24 A. I cannot give you a definitive answer whether they were or were

25 not armed, but I can tell you about an incident --

Page 9138

1 Q. But be brief, because we are coming to an end.

2 A. The Tuzla Corps was made of Croats, Muslims, Albanians, and

3 Serbs. Propaganda originating with the Croatian army was very powerful so

4 that the young men were fleeing from that corps and joining the Croatian

5 army. They were casting away their weapons, and that is why this corps

6 withdrew from Bosanski Brod. The corps was joined by Serb volunteers.

7 They took up arms and joined that corps.

8 It is common fact that pilots also deserted the Yugoslav army.

9 Whoever was of Croat or Muslim ethnic background deserted that army, and

10 that was the upshot of the propaganda.

11 Q. Do you know, have you heard, where did you go when they left the

12 JNA, its members of Croat and Muslim ethnicity?

13 A. I saw with my own eyes when I was on the bridge. They immediately

14 took off the caps of their heads and they discarded their weapons into the

15 Sava, and immediately as they crossed the bridge they joined the ZNG.

16 Some people who were sick or not up to the standard were sent to go home.

17 Q. Thank you, Witness DA.

18 THE INTERPRETER: The counsel has used the last name of the

19 witness.

20 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] This is the end of the

21 examination-in-chief, but perhaps the Prosecution or Their Honours will

22 have some questions for you. So please, remain where you are.

23 [In English] If possible to strike from the record.

24 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: You tendered --

25 MR. LUKIC: And if the last exhibit could be marked, please, Your

Page 9139

1 Honour.

2 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Yes, my question. Admitted into evidence, D38.

3 Could the registry please take care of that last name be redacted.

4 And then for the cross-examination, please.

5 Cross-examined by Mr. Koumjian:

6 Q. Thank you. Good afternoon, sir.

7 MR. KOUMJIAN: Perhaps I could ask the usher to move the ELMO so

8 that I have a line of sight to the witness.

9 Thank you.

10 Q. Witness DA, excuse me if I do not call you Witness DA. That will

11 confuse me because in my language, DA is the Prosecutor. And I know that

12 you are a fellow attorney. But I will call you, so that the record is

13 clear, "sir" or "witness."

14 Witness, sir, thank you for coming today. And thank you for

15 telling us about the crimes that you witnessed, and thank you for your

16 work in documenting crimes that happened in Bosnia.

17 Can you tell the Judges why it is so important that a record be

18 kept and that the truth be known about crimes and war crimes committed

19 against innocent civilians in Bosnia.

20 A. Yes, I can do that. It is important, and how. It is important to

21 tell the truth before this Honourable Court. If the Court is here to

22 provide fair trial, then it needs to hear the truth. The truth must be

23 told, and the truth must be the starting point because there can be no

24 reconciliation in Bosnia until all sides to what happened tell their own

25 truth. Things will not calm down in Bosnia until all the sides tell their

Page 9140

1 truth, and then we shall be able to forgive one another, and then we shall

2 be able to live together.

3 Whoever denies the truth, he is causing trouble also to the

4 European Community and to his or her own people. And that is why we

5 founded our association, so that the truth could be heard of any ethnic

6 group because every victim has its own executioner, and every executioner

7 has a first and a last name. Whatever his ethnic background may be or his

8 faith may be, he should be brought to account before this Court, and that

9 is what we are fighting for.

10 Q. Thank you. And you yourself, sir, from what you've told us of

11 your background, experienced many things and lived your life in a

12 community that was mixed of ethnicities, and your own family was mixed

13 with Croats, with, in fact, the people that perpetrated these crimes, or

14 many of these crimes, the ethnic group in Bosanski Brod. Isn't that

15 correct? You were married to a Croat, and you had children that you

16 considered your children, who were of Croatian descent. Correct?

17 Stepchildren?

18 A. Yes, that's right. In my family, you said a sentence which was

19 not all right, that you said there were those who had committed

20 something. But nobody from my family has committed any wrong deed. So

21 let us be clear about that.

22 The two of us, my wife and I, cannot be blamed, cannot be held

23 responsible for the disintegration of Yugoslavia. There are two factors

24 which are to blame, one is external and the other one is internal. I do

25 not wish to speak about the external factor. It is up to history to tell,

Page 9141

1 that but what I am referring to is the internal factor. And that is, and

2 I want Their honours to hear that, that as long as we have chauvinistic

3 parties in power which brandish emblems and symbols about what happened

4 during World War II, as long as they brandish Hitler symbols, there can be

5 no peace. And we must do our utmost that every -- representatives of

6 every people explain to their own people what has happened because what

7 was happened now in the Netherlands if somebody picked up the flag with

8 Swastikas going around, of course there would be a reaction and that is

9 what is happening in our case. Once people understand that, that is our

10 problem. That is when this particular problem will be solved.

11 Q. You mentioned that in fact when you were arrested and abused that

12 they referred to you as a Chetnik. And believe me, sir, I am not at all

13 saying that that's true. What I'd like you to explain that isn't it a

14 fact that those who perpetrated the crimes and those who incited the

15 crimes brought up these symbols labelling all Serbs "Chetniks," labelling

16 all Croats "Ustasha," calling Muslims "balijas" or "mujahedin," and that

17 these kinds of misuse of history helped incite the crimes that were

18 committed?

19 A. You know, you who did not participate in it, of course, have

20 difficulty in understanding the evil that happened or to understand the

21 Balkan mindset. What happened in our case, what is still happening, what

22 happened in Kosovo, Albanians are not to blame, Croats are not to blame,

23 Serbs are not to blame. It is a virus which has somehow been sewn amongst

24 those people to sew strife. And this comes through religious communities,

25 through existing on nationalism on chauvinism in whatever European country

Page 9142

1 somebody starts, existing on nationalism, there will be trouble. We never

2 thought about that. My late father took care of in the same way of a

3 child of Croat background and a Serb background, and more of his

4 grandchildren were of predominantly Croat background than of predominantly

5 Serb background. And nonetheless, he lost his life in a very cruel way

6 even though he was innocent. And I am still suffering today. I have been

7 suffering for more than ten years because a state may fall apart. You may

8 lose your state. You lose your home but when you lose your family

9 members, then you are reduced to nothing. When you lose your next of kin,

10 and I've lost mine because they are on two sides. Some are in Croatia and

11 some are now in Bosnia, in Republika Srpska, and it is very difficult to

12 live with that. And let me just add that the mixed marriages suffer the

13 most. I think we fared the worst and we are still the chief victims

14 because as long as we have the jingoistic parties in power, children of

15 mixed marriages and children from such marriages will be the chief

16 victims.

17 Q. Thank you. Sir, we haven't -- Bosanski Brod has not really been

18 the subject of this trial, so we don't know a lot about it. But let me

19 just get some basic facts from you. Bosanski Brod is on the Sava River,

20 and in fact it was very close to the fighting in Croatia in 1991, the

21 Tuzla Corps of the JNA had troops stationed, is that correct, in Bosanski

22 Brod? I see you shaking your head, so correct me.

23 A. Yes, I'd like to correct you. Oh, dear. You have to understand

24 that this Court will not be able to pass a fair judgement until the Court

25 understands who started it first. The war started with the secession of

Page 9143

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Page 9144

1 republics --

2 Q. I'm sorry, I have to stop you.

3 A. -- the war started in Croatia, in Croatia, on the 4th or the 5th

4 of May, 1991 when Bijelis, which was a Serb municipality, was attacked in

5 Slavonski Brod. On the 15th of July, it was attacked for the second time,

6 and 87 Serbs were taken to camps and prisons. On the 21st to the 22nd

7 July, 1991, I had my summer cottage in Croatia. It was looted and put

8 fire to.

9 Q. Sir, let me ask you --

10 A. On the 15th of September -- on the 16th of September, from

11 Croatia, fire was opened on the territory of Bosnia-Herzegovina. That is

12 on Serb villages. And on the 16th of September, Endenija [phoen]

13 Goranovic whilst at his workplace because a shell had been fired from

14 Slavonski Brod. So the Croatia carried the war from its territory into

15 the Bosnia-Herzegovina territory.

16 Q. Sir, you have to limit -- you're an attorney. I think you know

17 this -- your answers to the particular question that I ask because I know

18 that you have a lot of knowledge about events that you could share with

19 us, but we are limited in time. Is it correct that Bosanski Brod is

20 located on the Sava River bordering Croatia? Is that true or not?

21 A. It is, yes.

22 Q. Before the war, Bosanski Brod had a mixed population. About 40

23 per cent were Croat, about 31 per cent were of Serb -- identified

24 themselves as Serbs, and about 13 per cent identified themselves as

25 Muslim. Would that approximately correct?

Page 9145

1 A. I don't think that your data are accurate because you are missing

2 Yugoslavs. And about 8.000 citizens there were people who declared

3 themselves as Yugoslavs. Those were mostly the mixed marriages, so when

4 you have this information and then you would have different ratios. But

5 what I have to say also to this Court, between the Bosnian and -- between

6 the Bosanski and Slavonski Brod there is the River Sava, and there is a

7 bridge. And there was a slogan on that bridge. "Forbidden to Serbs and

8 dogs."

9 Q. Sir --

10 A. If you go from Bosanski Brod, if you want to cross to the Croatian

11 side, then dogs and Serbs were prohibited from going over there, so what

12 does that tell you?

13 Q. Sir, can you try to limit your answers to the questions I ask.

14 What you're saying may be important, but both attorneys will have a chance

15 to ask you questions.

16 You talked in your testimony, you told us about many experiences

17 that you had, where in fact you were saved by people of Croatian descent,

18 individuals. You talked about a soldier, I believe, yesterday who called

19 your wife when you were first held in the prison. You talked about

20 another soldier that gave you a ride, I believe, to your house, remembered

21 you as being an attorney who had helped him on a case. And you talked

22 about a woman who risked her life to save you when someone was trying to

23 slit your throat. All of these were Croats. Correct? Is that yes, sir?

24 I'm sorry, you have to answer outloud.

25 A. Yes, I have nothing against Croats. They are very nice people.

Page 9146

1 But you have to understand, you have to understand, that the nationalist,

2 the chauvinists played the role. Not all the Serbs are Chetniks, not all

3 the Croats are Ustasha, not all the Muslims are mujahedin. But the faith

4 played a part in this because the ethnic background -- the faith, the

5 religion played its part because they were the ones who infiltrated those

6 slogans, those things. When after Tudjman -- when they said you decide

7 about Croatia, but who is in Croatia in who lived in Croatia? Why did

8 they on the 22nd of September, 1992, why did they say the Serb people were

9 not longer a constituent people of Croatia. Why did they include in their

10 constitution the emblems dating back to World War II. That is what caused

11 the rebellion, and that I think was something that somebody was trying to

12 stir up we and that is what brought down Yugoslavia because we all lived

13 well. We all got along well, but somebody put a bone of contention

14 between us. I mean, I meet Croats here, and we hug each other because it

15 is not his fault that he had been misled. And until we managed to do away

16 with this form of deception of people, of -- because in the Netherlands, I

17 mean, you don't have only Dutch, there are all sorts of people here. And

18 yet you all get along well. And somebody wants to pit us against each

19 other because they know how we slaughtered one another in World War II.

20 And I know what that was like. But this one was much worse. It was much

21 more lethal, and there was no rule, international law, which could

22 describe this one because they tortured in 147 different ways.

23 And when I'm saying this, I'm not referring to the Croat people.

24 I'm not referring to the Muslim people because it has nothing to do with

25 peoples. I'm talking about extremists in every one of those peoples. And

Page 9147

1 there are also extremists in my people, and they also need to be brought

2 to account here, and the same yardstick has to be applied to all of them,

3 and hence our association.

4 Q. Thank you. I think everyone in the courtroom agrees with you

5 about that.

6 Sir, in Bosanski Brod today -- let me go back. Would it be

7 correct that the Croatian army occupied Bosanski Brod until, and you can

8 correct me about the date, I believe it was sometime in 1993 when at the

9 same time that the Croatian army withdrew from northern Bosnia, JNA and

10 Montenegrin units withdrew from areas of south of Dubrovnik, that these

11 two events occurred together?

12 A. I cannot say. And let me just correct you a little. On the 3rd

13 of March, Croatia attacked Bosnia and Herzegovina in Bosanski Brod. They

14 forced the Sava River and its units, entered Bosanski Brod and villages

15 with Croat population. So this was logistics together with Croats and

16 Muslims who agreed with what they were doing. They attacked Serb

17 villages, and Posavina is a scorched land. Only one house of 3500, only

18 one house, and its number is 108, only that one remained unscathed. All

19 the others were burned down. My house was burned down. I lost my house.

20 The Tuzla Corps fell apart because it was mixed. Because there were

21 Croats and Muslims and Serbs, so that it broke down. And as the corps

22 pulled out, the Serb people also withdrew with them. On the 7th of

23 October, the Serb people organised -- the 7th of October, 1992, I'm

24 saying, they took back Bosanski Brod. They took back Bosanski Brod

25 again. When people arrived on the spot, and when they could see the

Page 9148

1 Serb religious facilities, houses of worship, churches, cemeteries had

2 been burned down or damaged, monuments dating to World War II also damaged

3 and destroyed, then Serb defenders also engaged in vandalism, and they

4 destroyed a mosque. That was the end of 1992.

5 In early 1992, that is, in March, because in Bosanski Brod, on the

6 5th of July at 5.00, 1992, the Serb church was mined. And it was built

7 more than 150 years ago. When that church was mined, I and a few more

8 prominent citizens were brought there to take out the icons because a

9 Croat tank was -- tanker was to bring -- Croats' tank was to come there.

10 I cannot tell you about Dubrovnik and the second fall of Brod because I am

11 not aware of that. But what I am aware, I know what I am telling you

12 about now because I brought these documents, and the Honourable Court has

13 those documents.

14 Q. Do you know in Bosanski Brod at the end of the war, the time of

15 Dayton, what was the population, the ethnic mix of the population?

16 A. Serbs became the predominant group because --

17 Q. I'll ask you because, in fact, it was virtually Serb. Almost all

18 the Croats and Muslims left except for a handful. Isn't that correct?

19 A. No. No, no. May I ask you a question in turn? What is the

20 ethnic composition of Croatia? What was it at that time and what is it

21 now? Isn't Europe ashamed to have a purely Catholic state in its midst?

22 560.000 Serbs were expelled from Croatia. They still cannot go back home.

23 Q. Sir --

24 A. In Bosanski Brod, in Bosanski Brod, in 1992, there were Croats,

25 Croat men and Croat women, Muslim men and Muslim women. They were not ill

Page 9149

1 treated. The Serbs did not set up camps for them, did not put them in

2 camps and torture them as those others did in the beginning of 1992.

3 Q. I'm sorry, sir, you're not answering my question. You're a

4 lawyer, you know that in a courtroom, to get -- so we can reach the end

5 and finish we need you to answers the questions that are asked. We're not

6 trying to debate and I'm not trying to debate with you. All of your

7 points may be valid, but here we're here to answer the questions that are

8 asked. The Judges may have some questions for you later.

9 The question was, what was the composition, if you know - if you

10 don't know, say so - of Bosanski Brod at the time of the Dayton accords?

11 A. There was no census, and therefore I cannot tell you.

12 Q. Okay, sir. You lived there, and you saw the events that happened

13 in Bosanski Brod. Would you agree with me that everyone who lived in that

14 town would have seen what the Croatian army was doing? That all of the

15 people, including the leadership that the Croats put into the civilian

16 government were aware of the massive crimes that were going on against

17 Serb civilians in Bosanski Brod in 1992?

18 A. Well, let me tell you, sir: These Croats, Croats who committed

19 those crimes that I told you about, and other witnesses to this day, they

20 still walk around this Bosanski Brod and nobody is arresting them. And

21 that is what irks people there. Because wrongdoers must be removed from

22 amongst the other citizens so that people can come to terms with what

23 happened, reconcile, and go back to normal life again.

24 Q. Sir, I want to get to that, but first I'd like you to answer the

25 questions that I ask you. The question was that isn't it correct that in

Page 9150

1 1992 in Bosanski Brod, you talked about that in Posavina, house after

2 house was burned to the ground? Everyone who lived there was aware that

3 massive crime going on against the Serb civilians, including the Croatian

4 civilian leadership were aware of the crimes going on against Serb

5 civilians in the camps. Correct?

6 A. Yes, they did. They issued such orders, and they knew. And to

7 this day, they walk around Bosanski Brod and nobody asks them any

8 questions. We meet. He fetches up in front of me, and he hugs me. Gives

9 me a kiss now. And in 1992, when he beat me, I was a Chetnik to him and I

10 can forgive him that because we have to forgive such things. But let

11 everybody account for what he did, if he beat me, so let him account for

12 beating me.

13 Q. One other point: You talked about people who were massacred,

14 whose bodies are still missing, whose graves have never been discovered.

15 Can you tell the Court why it's important in your community and to the

16 people who come from where you live to find the bodies of their loved ones

17 who were killed and dumped into mass graves or hidden from view and whose

18 bodies have to this day not yet been discovered?

19 A. A very difficult question. A major problem, too. On the 6th and

20 on the 7th of September of this year, we had a joint meeting of the

21 associations of Croatia, Slavonia, Zagreb, Belgrade, Sarajevo, the

22 federation, Republika Srpska, and the meeting took place in Bosanski

23 Brod. And we addressed this issue, and we begged everybody concerned

24 where the graves of the missing civilians are so that the mothers, the

25 sisters, the fathers can at least light a candle at the place where their

Page 9151

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Page 9152

1 loved ones are buried. This was a good meeting, fortunately. And there

2 are results. And the mass grave which was discovered in Slavonski Brod

3 after this meeting, we were told that there were five graves there, and

4 digging is underway. And when the first grave was dug up and was marked

5 by NN, we found 11 dead bodies there. And that was also the case in the

6 next one, and in the following one. And there is another mass grave above

7 them which is still closed. We didn't know of its existence before this

8 meeting. So let's sober up and let us say to each other where the mass

9 graves are so that we can all find our loved ones in order to be able to

10 light a candle where they were buried. And this is the only way how

11 people can be reconciled, how people can forgive each other. When we find

12 the graves of our loved ones.

13 It is terrible when a mother doesn't know where her son is. And

14 I'm sure that we will hear from the witnesses who are looking for their

15 three brothers, for their fathers, and they don't know where their graves

16 are. For Europe to be able to reign in the Balkans, we have to deal with

17 this preliminary question in a sincere way. Once this is done, once we

18 forgive each other, then there will be no problems. We are good people.

19 We are diligent people. We will be reconciled. We only have to do away

20 with the chauvinist forces.

21 MR. KOUMJIAN: No further questions. Thank you, Your Honour.

22 Thank you, Mr. Witness.

23 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. The trial stays adjourned until

24 11.00 sharp.

25 --- Recess taken at 10.32 a.m.

Page 9153

1 --- On resuming at 11.02 a.m.

2 MR. LUKIC: Your Honours, if I may, I have only three questions.

3 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I think it's appropriate if you can include this

4 in the line of questions emanating from the line of questions put forward

5 by the Judges. Do you agree?

6 MR. LUKIC: Yes, yes.

7 Questioned by the Court:

8 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Following the line of questions we just heard, I

9 think as Prosecution counsel correctly pointed out, everybody in this

10 courtroom will share your view that there is not only one responsible

11 party, that there is a number of responsibles from all groups

12 unfortunately [Realtime transcript read in error "fortunately"] deciding

13 to go -- to proceed on an avenue which only can be called criminal

14 behaviour. And it's for this Tribunal to prosecute and to take the

15 necessary consequences against whomsoever from which ethnic group soever.

16 I only wanted to ask you the following question: In agreement

17 with nearly all the witnesses we heard here, it was testified that before,

18 let's call it neutral, the events happened in 1991, 1992, following years,

19 the ethnic groups lived together peacefully in Former Yugoslavia. What

20 would be from your point of view the exact date or the approximate date

21 since when this destruction of the peaceful living-together of all

22 ethnical or religious groups started? And where do you see the reasons

23 for this development?

24 A. The people of the Former Yugoslavia, as you said it yourself,

25 lived in a community, in a state which had its constitution, its joint

Page 9154

1 army, and its joint organs. The 14th congress of the league of communists

2 of the Former Yugoslavia which took place in 1990 meant the break out of

3 that party and that was also the beginning of the disintegration of

4 Yugoslavia. Two factors influenced those developments. There was an

5 external factor and an internal factor. I cannot talk about the external

6 factor. It's up to history to talk about that. As for the internal

7 factors, I've already said something. All the republics in the Former

8 Yugoslavia were states, virtual states. They had their territory and all

9 the other characteristics of states. And this is the origin of all the

10 evil.

11 The republics which wanted to secede from the Former Yugoslavia,

12 but instead of doing it in a peaceful way, let there be Croatia, let there

13 be Macedonia, let there be Slovenia, let there be Bosnia. But instead of

14 doing it peacefully, they started to destroy the constitution which dated

15 back to 1974. On the 22nd of December, 1992, deleted Serbs as a

16 constituent people of Yugoslavia, and this is the origin of the evil. The

17 evil had another form, symbols from the Second World War were introduced,

18 and this annoyed people. People were afraid of those symbols because the

19 swastika, and I believe that the Honourable Chamber has that document, so

20 the swastika irritates everybody, not only the Serbs. So that was the

21 second reason. And a third reason was that the nationalist or

22 ethnically-based parties were set up. The HDZ, the SDA, and the SDS.

23 These ethnically-based parties, sewed the seed of discord, who helped

24 those parties, it will be up to history to say that.

25 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: [Microphone not activated]

Page 9155

1 THE INTERPRETER: Your Honour, can you please switch on the

2 microphone.

3 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Sorry. We learned from your testimony that

4 Bosanski Brod is situated close, directly, to Croatia. Have you been

5 aware of fugitives coming from Croatia? When did this development start,

6 if there was such a development?

7 A. Yes. In Croatia, on the 4th or on the 5th of May, 1991, a village

8 called Bijelse near Slavonski Brod was attacked. It had a predominant

9 Serb population. The village was surrounded, fenced off, and mined. The

10 Serbs, 87 of them, were taken to various camps. And the Serbs from the

11 village fled the village, and they ran away to Bosnia and Herzegovina

12 because at the time, the war had not started in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

13 That happened, again, on the 15th of July. And this escalated when the

14 barracks were occupied in Slavonski Brod on the 15th of September, 1991,

15 when the barracks were surrounded. That scene, to be seen or to be heard,

16 it was terrible. There were loud speakers all around the barracks. The

17 barracks were surrounded. The few soldiers in there who were Croats,

18 Macedonians, and Muslims, they surrendered immediately. And the rest did

19 not dare do that. There was an armed rebellion in the barracks. The

20 soldiers were captured and they were put on trial in Slavonski Brod. And

21 it is interesting to see the decision of the Croat court in Slavonski

22 Brod. When the officers were tried, the decision says that from the

23 southern banks of the River Sava, not a single bullet was shot which means

24 from the Bosnian side, no single bullet was shot. All that there were

25 already soldiers in Bosanski Brod at that time. So that means that the

Page 9156

1 barracks were captured, and already on the 16th of September, all the

2 Serbian villages on the territory of Bosanski Brod were shelled from

3 Croatia.

4 An engineer was killed. His name was Goranovic. He was killed in

5 the workplace.

6 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Have you ever seen yourself a mass movement of

7 fugitives, of war fugitives, coming back from Croatia? Did they stay in

8 your town, in your municipality, or did they move through your

9 municipality? And do you know in which direction they headed?

10 A. According to the 1991 census, there were about 7.300 Serbs in

11 Bosanski Brod approximately. There were over 2600 Yugoslavs. That means

12 mixed marriages. So if you add up these two figures, you will come up

13 with over 10.000 citizens all together. Around 3500 Serbs crossed from

14 Slavonski Brod, from the Croatian side, to the Bosnian side, to Bosanski

15 Brod. So these were refugees from Croatia. The columns could be seen on

16 the bridge, and the columns were also across the River Sava, in boats, and

17 whatever means there were, people would resort to them in order to save

18 their own life.

19 People fled to Bosnia because they believed that there would be no

20 war in Bosnia, that there couldn't be war in Bosnia because of the

21 multiethnic composition of the population, Serbs, Croats, and Muslims.

22 However, we were wrong when we thought that.

23 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: We are awfully sorry that we, the Judges, did

24 not have yet an opportunity to come in our capacity to the territory of

25 Former Yugoslavia. Therefore, my question: Can you give me an estimate

Page 9157

1 about the distance from your hometown to the municipality of Prijedor.

2 A. Banja Luka, Prijedor, Brod, I can't tell you exactly, but about

3 160 kilometres approximately. Thereabouts. I can't tell you exactly. I

4 can't give you an approximate figure.

5 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Have you yourself ever been in Prijedor?

6 A. No, I haven't.

7 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Have you ever met before Dr. Milomir Stakic?

8 A. No, never.

9 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you.

10 May I ask, Judge Vassylenko, you have additional questions?

11 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: A couple of them.

12 Witness, can you tell us about ideas or plans to divide Bosnia and

13 Herzegovina between Croatia and Serbia proper?

14 A. I don't have any specific knowledge. But what I read in the

15 printed press, the newspapers and magazines carried a story about a napkin

16 on which Tudjman drew the borders of the future Bosnia. The border was

17 supposed to be along the River Bosnia down to Sarajevo, and then further

18 on to Neum. But this is what the media carried. How correct is that, I

19 don't know. We have not come across any documents indicating any such

20 thing.

21 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: [Microphone not activated]

22 THE INTERPRETER: Can we have the mike on.

23 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: Giving rather extensive answers to one of the

24 questions of the Prosecutor, it seems to me you stated that it is a shame

25 for European Union to support the emergence of a Catholic state in

Page 9158

1 Europe. Maybe I didn't understand you correctly, or if so, I apologise if

2 you stated so. I ask you to explain what did you mean.

3 A. Obviously, there has been a misunderstanding. I said that a state

4 has been created, and this is extremely misfortunate. Serbs from Croatia

5 were cleansed. They came to Bosnia. From there, they were expelled to

6 Serbia. Their houses were burnt, their property was burned, their

7 apartments, the Serb apartments, were burned. Now, when they are supposed

8 to return, we are returning into Croat or Muslim apartments. I, for one,

9 I am in a Muslim apartment. Mine was burned down and looted. The

10 building still stands, but I don't have the money to repair my apartment.

11 I live in somebody else's apartment. I know I have to leave it, but where

12 am I supposed to go? I'm old. My pension is very low. It's under 200

13 German marks a month. So now I am faced with a problem. Serbs are

14 returning to Bosnia to their own homes. What about the Serbs who came to

15 Bosnia from Croatia? They now live in somebody else's houses. They do

16 not have access to their own property. And let's understand that for

17 once. If everybody were to return to their place, to their original

18 place, to their property, then this has to apply to Croatia, Slovenia,

19 Macedonia, and to Bosnia-Herzegovina. And only in that way we are going

20 to help each other.

21 It is -- it would be good if we could start communicating as

22 people. This would result in the lowering of tensions, and we will go

23 back to a normal life. Your question, Your Honour, is really good, and I

24 thank you for it. I'm sitting here in front of you, and you can see what

25 I have been reduced to. I haven't seen my granddaughter for 11 years. I

Page 9159

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Page 9160

1 can't see her. For security reasons, she cannot come to me. She has

2 started school. And this is what is killing me. And it is not just me

3 that have such a case. There's a number of citizens with similar

4 stories. Therefore, when this issue is resolved jointly, then we will

5 also resolve a problem that Europe has. We are not the people who are

6 afraid of work. We work all over Europe, in Germany and the Netherlands

7 and France. We are good workers. We will be able to provide for

8 ourselves. We will be able to live our daily bread. But let's first get

9 to each other. Let's forgive each other our respective sins. Once we do

10 that, everybody will be better off. Europe, the whole world. But we have

11 to work on that. We shouldn't just wait for Europe to give us help, some

12 food packages. And that is why our association has been founded. This

13 is an association which seeks the truth, all of us to tell the truth and

14 that is how we want to help each other and the entire world for that. And

15 believe me when I tell you, vehicles with a checkerboard flag drives from

16 Slavonski Brod to Bosanski Brod, nobody reacts. If a similar thing

17 happened in the reverse direction, if a Serbian symbols were on the car,

18 the cars driving from Bosanski to Slavonski Brod, then we would see it.

19 This is a bad thing for the Balkans. This is a bad thing for Bosnia,

20 which still has a multiethnic composition.

21 I can go to a mosque. I can go to a Catholic church. Because

22 there's only one God. There's only one Christ. There's no one God for

23 Muslims; there's no another God for orthodox religion. There's only one

24 God. And as long as the ethnically based parties have support, the evil

25 will go on. I don't belong to any party. I will never belong to any

Page 9161

1 party ever again. This is evil, and this means no peace.

2 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: Thank you. I have no more questions.

3 [Private session]

4 [redacted]

5 [redacted]

6 [redacted]

7 [redacted]

8 [redacted]

9 [redacted]

10 [redacted]

11 [Open session]

12 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. I didn't fully understand the

13 Defence counsel.

14 MR. LUKIC: It's a small association, mostly only this gentleman.

15 So it's very easy to identify him through the association.

16 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: So may it be redacted from the transcript, but

17 we know about it.

18 THE REGISTRAR: We took the initiative and moved to private

19 session. So this was said in private session.

20 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: It was said in private session. So therefore,

21 there's no risk.

22 May I then ask Judge Argibay.

23 JUDGE ARGIBAY: Good morning, sir. I have a question for you. You

24 talk about the ethnically based parties, and that suddenly before the war,

25 the war started, you started seeing different symbols or flags or

Page 9162

1 something that identify with the different parties. Those symbols came up

2 just from one day to the other that you started seeing swastikas or

3 whatever on the walls or you listen to the radio, to the media with

4 propaganda? How did this come out?

5 A. The internal factor which served to break up Yugoslavia on the

6 media hit the bull's eye in the media. Serbs were called Chetniks.

7 Croats were called Ustasha. Muslims were called mujahedins, and there you

8 go. That's how evil happens. The Second World War in this area resulted

9 in terrible things such was Jasenovac and other places of torture. When

10 these symbols reappeared, they reappeared in Croatia first. They became

11 an integral part of official documents, and that was bad. If you look at

12 video footage from the war, and if you watch it, you will be terrified by

13 all the derogatory words. And this is what people were afraid of, and

14 they started fleeing. And for as long as there are these tensions in

15 place, there will be no peace.

16 And the parliaments, the respective parliaments, support that.

17 And we should tell each other the truth. We should sit at the same table

18 and resolve the matters. I told you about the mass graves. When we

19 wanted to find them, we sat down at the same table, Muslims, Croats, Serbs

20 from Serbia, Serbs from Bosnia, and we said to each other: "Let's be

21 truthful. Let's tell each other. Let's admit to each other where the

22 mass graves are so that the mothers could light a candle on their sons'

23 graves." And then we found out there was a mass grave in Slavonski Brod.

24 That was the major result. So this is a sticking point in the entire

25 case. And when this is finally solved, there will be peace. There will

Page 9163

1 be prosperity for all of us.

2 I apologise. Let me tell you another thing: The greeting "God

3 and Croats," do you know what that means? It means the same thing as if

4 somebody said God and Serbs, God and Muslims. How can one people be

5 identified with God? We are all children of God. You, me. We are all

6 God's children. And what if, for example, a Dutch person said: "The

7 Dutch and the God?" This is what brings fear. This is what instills fear

8 among the people. And if somebody says "I am God's child" why would one

9 person be more valuable than the other because he is a Catholic and I am

10 an Orthodox? And as long as these parties are in power, there will be no

11 peace, people will not be reconciliated. We can raise funds, we can bring

12 people before all sorts of courts, but there will be no real peace until

13 this is resolved.

14 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. Defence counsel had some questions.

15 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honour. Just short ones.

16 Re-examination by Mr. Lukic:

17 Q. [Interpretation] Witness DA, there was a military station in

18 Bosanski Brod, isn't it?

19 A. Yes. As of the 3rd of October [as interpreted], 1992, until the

20 beginning of October, 1992.

21 THE INTERPRETER: That is what the witness said.

22 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]

23 Q. The transcript says from the 3rd October. Is that it?

24 A. No. From the 3rd March, 1992, until the 6th October, 1992.

25 Q. Thank you. Was the army the one who committed misdeeds in

Page 9164

1 Slavonski Brod?

2 A. I don't know which army you have in mind.

3 Q. HVO, the Croat/Muslim army.

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. That was the army which was under this military rule?

6 A. The army which was under the command of this military

7 administration did what they did. They scorched Posavina. They scorched

8 land. All of the religious facilities were brought down, museums,

9 monuments to victims of World War II. Jewish cemeteries, Jewish

10 monuments. All this was destroyed. There are documents, and I believe

11 this Tribunal has them.

12 Q. And this military administration issued orders to the army that

13 was under its command, is that so?

14 A. Yes. But the command, the command for Posavina was in Croatia.

15 It was called east Posavina, with the seat in Djakovo and Slavonski Brod,

16 depending on the unit.

17 Q. Djakovo and Slavonski Brod are towns in Croatia?

18 A. Yes, in Croatia, neighbouring towns.

19 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much. I have no

20 further questions.

21 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: My first question, sir, is do you agree that

22 your testimony is used in other cases, if so requested, under the same

23 conditions? That means under the same protective measures as applicable

24 under your testimony.

25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. But just let me add -- yes.

Page 9165

1 But let me add, my story is ten years long. I haven't told you a great

2 many things. But yes, of course, I do agree. Yes, of course.

3 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: So I have to thank you very much for coming

4 here, telling us. I know it's only a very short part of the story you

5 could tell this Tribunal. But I'm quite sure that you heard from,

6 especially from the Defence counsel, why we have to limit in this

7 Tribunal, in this concrete case, our questions to a certain area. And I'm

8 quite sure that under the mandate of this Tribunal, to prosecute all war

9 crimes committed on the territory of Former Yugoslavia since 1991, there

10 will be not only made use of your testimony, but I can't exclude that

11 maybe in future you will be summoned once again when it's a case against

12 the responsible ones responsible for that what happened to you and to your

13 beloved ones. Thank you for coming, and you're excused for today. May I

14 ask the usher to escort you out of the courtroom. Thank you.

15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you, too. Thank you for

16 listening to me. I am confident -- I profoundly believe that this Court

17 will be fair and just, that they will -- that you will dispense justice

18 whichever side may be responsible for a war crime. I think that everybody

19 should account for what they did. Thank you.

20 [The witness withdrew]

21 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Before we proceed with the next witness, may I

22 ask the Defence counsel to proceed in the spirit we discussed yesterday,

23 to concentrate on the core issues. And first of all, not to go one step

24 further and to introduce documents which seems to be not relevant for this

25 concrete case. You have seen that the Chamber will not, in the presence

Page 9166

1 of a witness, discuss the relevance because our judicial terms will not be

2 understood by witnesses. And therefore, please I ask you once more, show

3 the necessary self-restraint when we proceed now with the next witness.

4 But let me first ask, did you receive the requested statements listed in

5 your motion on mistrial?

6 MR. LUKIC: Yes, we did, Your Honour.

7 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: And finally, only that it not be forgotten, what

8 about the famous page 81? I think it's not necessary to have a new

9 number. It goes under the same number, if the Madam Registrar could

10 assist us. What is the number?

11 MR. KOUMJIAN: So the record is clear, this is S235. And the ERN

12 number is 0201-1796.

13 THE REGISTRAR: So it will be numbered S235-81.

14 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you.

15 Just for clarification, all documents were already admitted into

16 evidence, and also this page is now admitted as S235-81. It's still from

17 the Prosecutor's case.

18 I don't think that we have other urgent administrative matters

19 before us. Protective measures for the next witness are, once again,

20 pseudonym, which would be DB. And face and voice distortion. And I take

21 it that the testimony will not take longer than 90 minutes as we can read

22 from your summary?

23 MR. LUKIC: Yes, Your Honour. Hopefully we'll finish by that

24 time. Yes.

25 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Only that you know, we have to make the break,

Page 9167

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

11

12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and

13 English transcripts.

14

15

16

17

18

19

20

21

22

23

24

25

Page 9168

1 then, at 12.30.

2 May I ask the usher to bring into the courtroom Witness DB.

3 May I ask for an urgent correction of the transcript. On page 30,

4 line 4, it reads: "Fortunately..." Correctly, it has to read

5 "unfortunately." Thank you.

6 [The witness entered court]

7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good afternoon.

8 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Good morning, Witness. Can you hear me in a

9 language you understand?

10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I can.

11 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. May we please hear your solemn

12 declaration.

13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak

14 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

15 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. Please be seated again. And already

16 in the beginning, I have to apologise that we will call you only "Witness"

17 or "Witness DB." This is for your own protection on the request of the

18 Defence. And it's not a sign of impoliteness or uncourtesy. So please

19 understand it's for your own protection.

20 So the floor is for the Defence, please.

21 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honours. I would like the usher to

22 show the witness a paper with her name so she can confirm.

23 WITNESS: WITNESS DB

24 [Witness answered through interpreter]

25 Examined by Mr. Lukic:

Page 9169

1 Q. [Interpretation] Do you see your name on this sheet of paper?

2 A. Yes, I do.

3 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Admitted into evidence as D39.

4 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]

5 Q. Good morning, Mrs. DB.

6 A. Good morning.

7 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness speak up, please.

8 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]

9 Q. Will you please speak up a little so that people in the department

10 for interpretation can hear you.

11 A. All right.

12 Q. Can we start?

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. I'd like to begin with the 3rd of March, 1992. Will you tell us,

15 where did you live? Who did you live with? And what happened that day?

16 A. I was living with my husband and two daughters in Brod, in our

17 apartment. That is where we lived, and troops of HVO came to our door.

18 They fired shots, entered, searched the flat because allegedly we had the

19 radio station [as interpreted]. Of course they didn't find it because we

20 didn't have it.

21 Q. At that time, where were your daughters?

22 A. My older daughter was in Banja Luka at the university there, and

23 my younger one I sent to Belgrade -- no, sorry, to Novi Sad, to her aunt.

24 Q. Will you just, after I've asked you a question, will you please

25 wait a moment so that my question could be interpreted.

Page 9170

1 A. All right.

2 Q. And why did you send your daughter to her aunt in Novi Sad?

3 A. Well, I had begun to be afraid of the Croatian troops. They had

4 come to search our house, and they were armed when they came to our

5 place.

6 Q. And your older daughter, you say, was at university in Banja

7 Luka. Is that so?

8 A. Yes, it is.

9 Q. And after the 3rd of March, 1992, could you move freely around

10 Bosanski Brod?

11 A. No, I could not. I could not move around.

12 Q. When and how did you leave your apartment?

13 A. Well, it wasn't easy to go out. It was always difficult because

14 they always followed closely, where we moved around, what we did. So we

15 did not really dare move about.

16 Q. Did your husband leave the apartment following the 3rd of March?

17 A. No, he did not. But my husband had already by that time taken

18 in. He was arrested. He was taken under custody to where they kept those

19 prisoners in camps.

20 Q. At that time, your mother lived in Sijekovac. Is that correct?

21 A. Yes, it is.

22 Q. And what happened in Sijekovac on the 26th of March, 1992?

23 A. I heard about the slaughter in Sijekovac because my school fellow

24 called Nedo and his men committed a slaughter there. They broke into a

25 small street called Milosevic Sokak and they just slew everybody. They

Page 9171

1 slaughtered everybody. I did not see, that but I heard about it.

2 Q. And what happened on Serb Easter in Lijeske, do you know that?

3 A. Yes, I do. As announced that the Serb Easter would be bloody.

4 All Serb villages were taken by Croatian troops at the time, and they

5 started putting houses on fire, killing everybody they happened to come

6 across.

7 Q. Prior to the 11th of September, 1992, how many times did the

8 Croatian military forces take in your husband?

9 A. Three times before the 11th of September. Three times they took

10 him in.

11 Q. Until the 11th of September, or the 11th of November?

12 A. September.

13 Q. And he would be detained for how long on those three occasions?

14 A. Well, between 10 and 15 days, thereabouts.

15 Q. All together, 10, 15, or every time?

16 A. Every time.

17 Q. And what happened on the 11th of September, 1992, to you?

18 A. They came and took away both me and my husband and put us in

19 camps. He was put with men, and me with other women.

20 Q. After you were detained, what happened to you then?

21 A. When I entered -- as I entered there, one of those HVO soldiers,

22 he had the mark of the 108th unit. He took me into a room. He snatched

23 away my handbag and told me to undress. Because we were ashamed to do

24 that, he started undressing me. And he hit me somewhere here. And I fell

25 as he hit me. I just fell down. And then he said: "Lie down so that we

Page 9172

1 can make a little Ustasha." And I had -- I could not fight any more. And

2 that is how it went on day in day out, night after night evermore. Of

3 these rapes, it was the worst when they took me to the military positions,

4 that is where they hold positions. That is when I felt the worst because

5 that is when they raped me there so 11 through the night, and that is how

6 they just queued for it.

7 Q. Were you raped once a week, once a fortnight, every day, how often

8 was it?

9 A. Every night. They did not skip a single night for the duration of

10 my stay there. They did not spare me a single night. By day, I had to

11 work. And by night, rapes, torture.

12 Q. And what about the men who were detained?

13 A. Let me tell you another thing that they did to me and that I found

14 very difficult, too. I don't really know how to tell you that. They

15 forced me to kneel in front of them, and they would put their penis in my

16 mouth. And of course they either hold you by your hair or they kick you

17 if you try to spit it out. And then they do it in your mouth. And I have

18 to hide it somehow. I dare not spit it out, and I have to try to spit it

19 out into my T-shirt to hide that I am doing that.

20 But you were asking me about men.

21 Q. Since we are back to this subject, are you the only one who was

22 raped, or were other women raped, too?

23 A. We were all raped, all the women that were there. We were all

24 raped. But somehow, I was used most. I don't really know why. Well, I

25 was younger than those other women. I was younger.

Page 9173

1 Q. You mentioned also a Muslim woman. Could you tell us what

2 happened to her.

3 A. Yes, [redacted]. She is a Muslim. She was also

4 detained in the camp. We were together. And she was accused -- she was

5 accused because allegedly her brother's son was in the army, and she was

6 accused because of that. She was also tortured and raped, and she was

7 also taken to the frontline except that they took me to one side of the

8 village, and they took her to another side, to Kricanovo which is another

9 village adjacent to -- adjoining Brod.

10 MR. LUKIC: [In English] I'm sorry, Your Honour. Are we in open

11 session or private session, and if we are in open session, if possible we

12 would like to redact this name of this other victim.

13 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I can see no objections. Please redact the

14 name.

15 MR. LUKIC: It was my mistake, and I apologise.

16 Q. [Interpretation] Around the 25th of September, 1992, were you

17 transferred somewhere, and where?

18 A. From the stadium to the secondary school in Brod.

19 Q. And did the same practice continue there?

20 A. Yes. The routine was the same. It was just the same, same

21 Croatian troops. It was all the same. We were the same except that the

22 camp was different. And they brought another woman there. [redacted]

23 [redacted], who was from Teslic.

24 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May I ask the witness to refrain from quoting

25 names because we don't want to endanger these persons. So may the name

Page 9174

1 please be redacted from the transcript. Thank you.

2 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]

3 Q. What happened with that woman, but don't mention her name?

4 A. I won't. She was also tortured. She was raped, and on one night,

5 which I will never forget, we couldn't do anything. We were not allowed

6 to do anything. We could just hear to her screams. And I can't even

7 begin to describe the screams that we heard. And during the night, I

8 don't know how late it was, they just opened the door and threw her into

9 our room where we were. And when we saw her, we just dragged her to the

10 mattress where she lie down. In the morning, we couldn't recognise her.

11 She didn't have a single hair on her head, and she was all burnt. Her

12 bottom was burnt most of all. Then her elbows, both of her elbows. Her

13 knees. Every joint was -- on her body was burnt. Later on, I went to

14 that room where they had tortured her, and I saw a white electrical stove

15 with two plates. And they obviously put her on that little electrical

16 stove and burned her, electrical heater. And she was beaten black and

17 blue, and the hair was there. Later on when I cleaned the room, I saw her

18 hair. And from then onwards, she was bedridden. We served upon her, and

19 she was incontinent. And she couldn't tell us anything. She didn't know

20 a thing about anything.

21 Q. And you remained in the secondary school until when?

22 A. Until the 6th of October.

23 Q. What year?

24 A. 1992.

25 Q. Where were you taken from there?

Page 9175

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13 English transcripts.

14

15

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17

18

19

20

21

22

23

24

25

Page 9176

1 A. They made us run across the bridge to Slavonski Brod. And since

2 that woman, she couldn't walk, they put her in a car and transported her

3 on to the Croatian side. And then we took her and dragged her. We had to

4 run. We had to flee. And we couldn't drag her, and there was a trench

5 there. She fell into it. She asked for some water, for a drink of

6 water. And we were not allowed to give her any water. They made us run

7 all the time. She fell down, and two men from the Croatian army who

8 ordered us to move on, they shot at her. They had rifles, and they shot

9 at her. And that's where she remained, lying down on the ground, and the

10 rest of us, we continued running.

11 Q. Why were you transported on the 6th of October, 1992, from

12 Bosanski to Slavonski Brod?

13 A. We didn't know. Nobody told us anything. The Serbian army came

14 and liberated Bosanski Brod.

15 Q. And where were you transported on the same night?

16 A. We didn't know where we were going. They put us on lorries, and

17 they transported us to Orasje, to the camp there.

18 Q. What happened to you in that camp?

19 A. Everything was the same, rapes, torture. The men were forced to

20 work. In the evening, they would be beaten. They would be kicked. And

21 we all had to be in one room, both the men and the women. We were all

22 there together in Orasje, and we could see what was going on.

23 Q. Did you hear of a group known as "fire horses" in Orasje?

24 A. Yes. He is -- he was a fire horse. He was the main person

25 there. I don't know whether I'm supposed to mention his name at all.

Page 9177

1 Q. Yes, you can mention his name.

2 A. His name was Petar, Pero.

3 Q. What was his role in Orasje?

4 A. He was the main person in Orasje. I don't know what his rank

5 was. I don't know what the ranks of the Croatian soldiers were, but he

6 was the one who was beating our men the most.

7 Q. Did he also run the camp in Orasje?

8 A. Yes, yes, he did.

9 Q. Until when did you stay in Orasje?

10 A. I stayed there until the 24th of November, 1992.

11 Q. And how did your confinement stop?

12 A. What do you mean by "stop"?

13 Q. On the 24th of November, what happened?

14 A. The two of us, two women, were exchanged.

15 Q. Was anybody else supposed to be exchanged?

16 A. Yes, some of our men were also supposed to be exchanged, but none

17 of them were actually exchanged. Only the two of us, the two women.

18 Q. While you were incarcerated, did any representatives of the

19 international community come to register you?

20 A. Yes. They came while we were in Brod. They came on several

21 occasions, but then they would hide us. They would take the women away.

22 The men would stay behind. They would dig trenches. And the women would

23 be taken away and wait until the end of the visit. So they would mostly

24 hide us women from the international community.

25 Q. However, the representatives of the international community

Page 9178

1 managed to register you in Orasje?

2 A. Yes, they did register us in Orasje when they came there. That's

3 where they first registered us.

4 Q. And after that, you were exchanged?

5 A. Yes. The two of us, me and another woman were sent to be

6 exchanged.

7 Q. Was your husband in the same camps as you?

8 A. Yes, he was. And later on, when I left to be exchanged, he was

9 transferred to another camp in -- somewhere in Herzegovina. I forgot the

10 name of that camp. I can't remember the name of that place.

11 Q. Was he transferred to Ljubuski?

12 A. Yes, Ljubuski, exactly.

13 Q. How long was your husband incarcerated all together?

14 A. 11 months he was incarcerated.

15 Q. Do you suffer any consequences of all that?

16 A. Yes. Firstly, my marriage is now over. He left. He knew of all

17 my sufferings. I knew of all of his, and we couldn't understand each

18 other obviously. And the consequences that I personally suffer, the

19 medical consequences, that is, I live on tablets. I can't go to sleep

20 without tablets. I'm afraid every time when somebody knocks on my door.

21 To this very day, I'm afraid, and I start shaking all over. I have

22 gynaecological problems also. And two months ago, I had something for

23 which I had to undergo a surgery. So I still suffer.

24 Q. Thank you. I have no further questions. Can you please remain in

25 your seat. Maybe my learned friend from the Prosecution and the

Page 9179

1 Honourable Judges will have some questions to put to you.

2 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Cross-examination, please.

3 Cross-examined by Mr. Koumjian:

4 Q. Madam, thank you for coming, and for your courage in testifying.

5 We all can understand how very difficult it is, and painful.

6 You talked that the same thing or many of the same things that

7 happened to you happened to other women. Can you tell us, coming from

8 Bosnia, do you think for many women it's impossible for them to tell other

9 people about the suffering, and particularly about the sexual crimes

10 against them?

11 A. Yes, it is impossible. I am ashamed to tell you all this. I'm

12 sure they must be, too.

13 Q. Well, Madam, you should be proud for your courage and not ashamed.

14 You mentioned being in several different camps with women. And it

15 sounds, if I'm correct, that these crimes happened in every camp --

16 A. Yes.

17 Q. -- in all of these camps during the war where you were held by

18 soldiers, sexual crimes happened. Correct?

19 A. Yes, that is correct.

20 Q. Do you think those people who set up these camps and put women in

21 these camps run by soldiers should have been aware of the risk they put

22 those women in?

23 A. They should have been aware. I believe they should have.

24 Q. You mention that those running the camps tried to hide your

25 presence, the presence of women, from the international community. And

Page 9180

1 actually you're not the first witness to talk about the Croatian army

2 hiding women held in camps from the international community and the

3 international press. Did you find in your experience that there were

4 deliberate efforts by the authorities to keep your presence, the presence

5 of women, in camps hidden?

6 A. Yes. They made an effort to hide us.

7 Q. And in fact, once the International Red Cross was able to register

8 you, it led eventually to your release. So there was some protection, you

9 felt some protection, from the International Red Cross registering you and

10 coming to the camp. Is that correct?

11 A. Yes, that is correct.

12 Q. Can you think of any reason why authorities would keep the

13 International Red Cross away from camps and keep camps hidden, except to

14 conceal crimes that they know were occurring in those camps?

15 A. I didn't understand your question, sir.

16 Q. Sorry. Do you think that the authorities tried to keep the camps

17 hidden or keep the presence of women and those camps hidden in order to

18 conceal the crimes that they knew were going on in the camps?

19 A. Yes, yes. They knew, yes.

20 Q. Madam, thank you for your testimony.

21 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I do believe that your testimony speaks for

22 itself. And the Judges, therefore, refrain from asking any additional

23 questions. May I only ask you, do you agree that in case it will be

24 necessary that your testimony is used as well in other cases against

25 alleged offenders responsible for the crimes you described us this day,

Page 9181

1 under the same conditions? This means under the protective measures

2 granted to you in this testimony.

3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I agree.

4 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you very much.

5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I agree, because I have been through

6 all this. This is the truth. And I have told you nothing else but the

7 truth of the things that I have been through. This is what I've told you

8 today, Your Honours. Nothing else.

9 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: We have to thank you for your courageous

10 testimony. We all are aware how difficult it is for you, not only to come

11 here, but to reopen the wounds coming back to that what you suffered at

12 that period in time. And be assured that this Tribunal in its entirety

13 will do all the necessary to bring those to justice being responsible for

14 the crimes committed. Thank you and have a safe return.

15 May I ask the usher to escort the witness out of the courtroom.

16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you, sirs.

17 [The witness withdrew]

18 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: The trial stays adjourned until 12.40.

19 --- Recess taken at 12.17 p.m.

20 --- On resuming at 12.40 p.m.

21 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May we continue with the next witness. The same

22 protective measures, and pseudonym would be --

23 THE INTERPRETER: Can you please turn the microphone on, please.

24 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: -- DC. And we have face and voice distortion.

25 May I ask the usher to bring in the witness.

Page 9182

1 [The witness entered court]

2 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Good afternoon. Can you hear me in a language

3 you understand?

4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.

5 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May I ask you to give the solemn declaration.

6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Am I supposed to read this?

7 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Please.

8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak

9 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

10 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. You may be seated.

11 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.

12 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: And first of all, my apologies that we don't

13 address you with your full name. It's a protective measure requested by

14 the Defence, so it has nothing to do with impoliteness. It's just to

15 protect you when we call you either "witness" or "Witness DC." Thank you

16 for this understanding. And the floor is for the Defence.

17 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honour. I would first like --

18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.

19 MR. LUKIC: -- so the witness can confirm that her name is on this

20 piece of paper.

21 WITNESS: WITNESS DC

22 [Witness answered through interpreter]

23 Examined by Mr. Lukic:

24 A. Yes, it is.

25 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. This will be Exhibit D40.

Page 9183

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Page 9184

1 Please, Mr. Lukic.

2 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]

3 Q. Good morning, Mrs. DC.

4 A. Good morning.

5 Q. Can you please make a break after my question so that the

6 interpreters can do their job properly.

7 A. I understand.

8 Q. I'll start by asking you questions about the 3rd of March, 1992.

9 Do you remember that day?

10 A. Yes.

11 Q. What do you remember about that day?

12 A. On the 3rd of March, 1992 the Croat and Muslim army entered Tulek.

13 This is the periphery of Bosanski Brod. It was heavily armed. It had

14 armoured personnel carriers. It was around 5.00 in the afternoon. There

15 was a lot of shooting going on.

16 Q. How did you live after the 3rd of March, 1992?

17 A. The 3rd of March, it was terrible. I was surprised because my

18 neighbours who lived next to my house was among the Croat houses, and we

19 had lived very well together. And I was really surprised to see them

20 coming out of their houses armed, as if they had all known about what

21 would happen, as if they had been prepared. This is what surprised me.

22 Q. Were you allowed to move freely around Bosanski Brod at the time?

23 A. It was really bad. When the Croat and Muslim forces went to the

24 frontline, then I could move around. Then I could find some food, so I

25 was able to eat. It was almost like a house prison for me.

Page 9185

1 Q. Why were you not able to move around Bosanski Brod?

2 A. Because of the Croat army and because of the Muslim army. They

3 forbade us to move freely.

4 Q. What was celebrated on the 11th of May, 1992?

5 A. On the 11th of May, 1992, the celebration was about them capturing

6 Brod. They were singing songs, and they were shouting, saying "Thank God

7 Brod is ours, Brod is Croat."

8 Q. So that means that the Croat forces captured the entire

9 municipality?

10 A. Exactly, just the way you've put it.

11 Q. What happened to you on the 7th of July, 1992?

12 A. On the 7th of July, 1992, I was having lunch in my house, the

13 little food that I had. At that time, two armed military policemen came

14 and told me that they were taking me to the stadium in Bosanski Brod. I

15 asked them why. They said we don't know. Blazina Kraljevic, Ferdo,

16 ordered us to bring us in, and if we don't do that, it will be held

17 against us. So what could I do? Together with my husband, I went there.

18 Q. Where were you taken? What was that place?

19 A. On the 7th of July, 1992, I was taken to the stadium in Bosanski

20 Brod, and this is where we were imprisoned. My husband was with the men,

21 and I was with the women. So they separated us.

22 Q. Was that a regular prison? Was that a prison before the war or --

23 A. Before the war, I don't know.

24 Q. When you say "prison" --

25 A. I'm sorry, it was a camp, not a prison. We were taken to a camp.

Page 9186

1 I apologise. I'm a bit confused. We were taken to a camp.

2 Q. Did you keep -- did they keep you together with your husband or

3 did they separate you from each other?

4 A. They separated us from each other. My husband was taken to the

5 male camp, and I was taken to the female camp.

6 Q. And what happened to you three or four days later?

7 A. Four days after that, they had bunkbeds on the stadium, and this

8 is where they started ill treating me, harassing me. And I heard them

9 telling each other that they would massacre me, and they showed me how the

10 weapons looked like with which they would massacre me. They told me we

11 would massacre you and we would throw your clothes into the Sava. It was

12 a terrible shock for me.

13 Q. Was that the only thing that happened to you in that camp?

14 A. No. There were other things. They raped women. There were ten

15 of us in that room in the camp. Around 5.00 in the evening, they would

16 start taking us out, and this lasted until 5.00 in the morning. So it

17 went on night in, night out.

18 Q. How many times were you taken out in one night, on average?

19 A. Two times, three times maybe. Both me and the other ten women who

20 were in that room in the camp.

21 Q. Were you allowed to move freely around the camp?

22 A. Can you please repeat the question.

23 Q. Were you allowed to move freely around the camp or were you locked

24 up?

25 A. We were always locked up. I was locked up. Only when they raped

Page 9187

1 us, then they would unlock the door, and they all had the key. And when

2 they were supposed to bring us food, only one of them would have the key.

3 But when they were supposed to rape us, then they would all have the key.

4 How come they all had the key at the time when they were supposed to rape

5 us? I really don't know.

6 Q. During your incarceration, did you lose any weight?

7 A. Yes, I did. 10, 15, or maybe even 20 kilos I lost. I was afraid.

8 There was not enough food. For all these reasons, I lost weight.

9 Q. Do you know the name of the military unit that arrested you on the

10 7th of July, 1992?

11 A. I was arrested by Nermin from Slavonski Brod. That was his name.

12 And the other guy, he was from Sijekovac, but I don't know his name. They

13 were the ones who took me to the camp in Bosanski Brod at the stadium in

14 Bosanski Brod. They took both me and my husband together.

15 Q. Do you know the name of the unit that they belonged to? Were they

16 the army, the police?

17 A. As far as I knew, they were the HVO, the Croat/Muslim army.

18 Q. Can you please describe the event which took place in July of

19 1992.

20 A. In July of 1992?

21 Q. When you said that a lot of troops came.

22 A. Please remind me, and I'll tell you everything. One night, a lot

23 of troops came and lined the ten of us up in that room. And they raped us

24 there and then. And the guy from Sijekovac who arrested me and whose name

25 I don't know, he told me that I was good. And I told him: "Shame on

Page 9188

1 you. I could be your mother." Then he slapped me. I screamed. And from

2 then on, I'm hard of hearing in my left ear. And then Manda from Korac,

3 she shouted: "Get out. It's enough." When I started screaming, and then

4 they left the room.

5 Q. Where were you transferred on the 21st of August, 1992?

6 A. On the 21st of August, 1992, I was transferred to Tulek. That was

7 a local commune consisting of all the three ethnic backgrounds, and

8 this is where the Croat/Muslim army was. This is where they rallied, and

9 this is where they committed genocide in Bosanski Brod. And I was

10 transferred to Tulek, in the warehouse of the Belgrade department store.

11 That's where I spent five days. And after five days, we were taken to

12 Slavonski Brod and Slavonska Pozega in a personnel armoured carrier. And

13 they asked us why we were incarcerated. And I told them I really don't

14 know. It's not me who started the war. I believe I'm incarcerated

15 because I'm a Serb from Slavonska Pozega. And then they took us back to

16 Tulek, and from there we were exchanged in Dragalic.

17 Q. Was your husband incarcerated in the same camp?

18 A. Yes, my husband remained in the warehouse of the department store

19 when I was exchanged.

20 Q. What happened to him when he remained there in the warehouse of

21 the Belgrade department store after you had left?

22 A. Just a moment, please. My husband was returned to the prison at

23 the stadium, to the military prison at the stadium. And on that night,

24 they beat up our men. And he was unconscious. And a man who was with him

25 in the camp, the man was from Prnjavor, and I went to visit him in

Page 9189

1 Prnjavor, he told me that they poured water over him, and he came to.

2 Then a soldier came and hit him on the head with a bottle. And he started

3 bleeding behind the left ear. And then from then on, he didn't give a

4 sign of life.

5 Q. And your husband was killed that night?

6 A. Yes, the 30th of August.

7 Q. Which year?

8 A. 1992. The 30th of August, 1992.

9 Q. Before he came to the camp, was your husband a healthy man or was

10 he suffering from something?

11 A. My husband had a brain tumor, and he had had an operation.

12 Q. Can we go on?

13 A. Yes. I'll do my best.

14 Q. While you were detained at the stadium, did you hear about how men

15 were beaten next door?

16 A. Yes. I could hear the screams of my husband right next door to

17 the place where I was. When he cried out, Oh, my God, I'll remember

18 when this war happened.

19 Q. At that time, there was no more fighting in the Bosanski Brod

20 Municipality?

21 A. Which time do you have in mind?

22 Q. July and August of 1992.

23 A. What do you mean there was no fighting? Of course there was,

24 until Brod fell into the Serb hands on the 6th of October.

25 Q. Was there any gunfire in relation to the fighting in July and

Page 9190

1 August?

2 A. Yes, there was gunfire.

3 Q. You mentioned bags and the rustling of those bags. It reminded

4 you of something.

5 A. Well, I wasn't sleeping well because I was so traumatized, and I

6 was suffering from nightmares so I couldn't really sleep. And I could

7 hear them being hit and interrogated, and all of a sudden I heard a shot

8 from a firearm. And I could hear the rustling of plastic bags and how

9 they were being taken into a car, and taken away to where mass graves were

10 found behind -- on the other side of the Sava in Bosanski Brod.

11 Q. Did they hide you in the kayak club and why?

12 A. In August 1992, a soldier came and fired a pistol into the door

13 lock of the room that we were kept locked in and told us: "Get ready,

14 you're going." And I asked where? And he refused to answer. Allegedly,

15 that we looked fine and that they are Croats and Muslims, and as inmates

16 they looked worse than we did. But that wasn't it. They were hiding us

17 from UNPROFOR to avoid having us registered.

18 Q. And from the kayak club, did they take you back to the camp?

19 A. Yes, they did. Three days later. And when we got to that room,

20 we left it clean behind. But when we returned, it looked like nothing

21 that room. It looked better -- I mean, places where livestock are kept

22 looked better. It wasn't fit for human residence.

23 Q. And do you know why was that?

24 A. There were bloodstains. It was dirty. It was horrible. Ten of

25 us put our sleeves up and cleaned it. What went on there, I do not know.

Page 9191

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Page 9192

1 But judging by the filth, obviously nothing good happened there.

2 Q. And apart from beating up men in the camp, did they also have to

3 do certain chores?

4 A. Yes, they took them to dig trenches. The Muslim military police

5 took men because one was presumably building a house, so -- and how he

6 built during a war, how could he build a house when there was a war on?

7 So they were taken there. In the evening, they beat them. And we

8 suffered twice because we suffered our own pain, and we suffered the pain

9 of the men because the bathrooms were adjoining, so one could hear

10 everything.

11 Q. Who was Indira Vrbanjac?

12 A. Indira Vrbanjac was at the stadium in Bosanski Brod. She was

13 admitting us into the camp, and she took our names down. And she forced

14 Serbs to rape us. And that Serb whom she tried to make to rape me, he

15 said: "Madam, you can't do it. I mean, that's now how things can

16 happen." And Hazba Nukic from Kobasi, he [as interpreted] forced him to

17 sit into a Serb's lap and to press her breasts, and he refused to do that.

18 And then she approached that Serb, this Indira Vrbanjac, and told him

19 and Hazba told me about that after she came back, we did not really talk,

20 but in that room we were kept, we only whispered into each other's ears

21 because we were afraid that perhaps the room might be bugged. And well,

22 if you refused to press her breasts, then I'll start kicking you. So what

23 else this poor sap could do. He was forced to start doing that. And her

24 husband started screaming, he could not stand any more. That is Hazba

25 Nukic. And then Indira Vrbanjac said: "That's enough. You don't have to

Page 9193

1 do it any longer."

2 Q. Is Hazba's last name Nukic, N-u-k-i-c?

3 A. That's right, Nukic.

4 Q. And what is her ethnic background?

5 A. She is a Muslim.

6 Q. And Indira Vrbanjac?

7 A. Indira Vrbanjac is a Muslim.

8 Q. Did Indira Vrbanjac participate in organising other tortures of

9 prisoners at the stadium?

10 A. Well, I suppose so, if she did this to Hazba Nukic who personally

11 told me about it, then I don't think she went on doing that because she

12 was nationally minded. Indira Vrbanjac was married to a Muslim. And when

13 a Muslim heard how she mistreated Serbs, he left her and then she

14 remarried and married a Croat.

15 Q. Whilst your husband was alive, how often did they beat him in the

16 camp?

17 A. When they took us to the kayaking club next to the Sava, I was

18 with my husband then, and he told me that he had been beaten three or four

19 times a day. And he had to wash cars, and they made him wash the same car

20 ten times over and beat him in the process.

21 Q. So you were incarcerated, you were detained, until the 26th of

22 August, 1992, and then you were exchanged. Is that right?

23 A. Yes. I was exchanged -- I was taken to the camp on the 7th of

24 July, 1992, and I was exchanged on the 26th of August, 1992 at Dragalic.

25 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Thank you. I have no further

Page 9194

1 questions. But please stay here because perhaps the Prosecutor and Their

2 Honours might have questions for you.

3 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Prosecution, please.

4 MR. KOUMJIAN: No, thank you, Your Honour. I don't have any

5 questions. Thank you.

6 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Judge Argibay.

7 Questioned by the Court:

8 JUDGE ARGIBAY: I'll try to be as clear as possible. But I

9 remember you said at the beginning of your testimony that you were

10 forbidden by the Croat army and the Muslim army to move around the town.

11 How were you forbidden? Did they come and tell you you can't do this, or

12 was an announcement made, or was it physically impeding you to go around?

13 Can you answer that.

14 A. I can, yes. My neighbours said the same thing. "Don't move

15 around." And the military said the same thing. "You may not move around,

16 and you may not stop in groups of Serbs."

17 JUDGE ARGIBAY: Well, thank you. And I have another one. You

18 talked in that same paragraph, I mean, of the Croat army and the Muslim

19 army. Were there two separate armies, and can you -- if it was two

20 separate armies, can you tell me what was the difference between one and

21 the other?

22 A. I cannot answer that. All I heard was that it was the Croat and

23 Muslim troops, the HVO. And I was in the military police prison at the

24 stadium in Bosanski Brod.

25 JUDGE ARGIBAY: Thank you.

Page 9195

1 A. Not at all.

2 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you for your testimony. May I, in

3 addition, ask you whether you are --

4 A. Thank you.

5 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: -- whether you agree that your testimony, if

6 necessary, can be used in other trials as to the fact that this Tribunal

7 is mandated to prosecute all persons responsible for serious violations

8 of international humanitarian law committed in the territory of the Former

9 Yugoslavia since 1991. That means also those ones responsible for the

10 crimes committed against you and your beloved ones. Do you agree that

11 under the same circumstances, we'll say the same protective measures, your

12 testimony can be used in other cases as well?

13 A. Well, what am I to answer? This was difficult for me, and I'd

14 rather not testify again because I'm still afraid. I dare not go to

15 Slavonski Brod. I dare not move around. And I barely managed to do this.

16 But I came to tell you about my ordeal, about what they did to me and my

17 husband.

18 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: We all are extremely grateful that you decided

19 to come and that you were indeed courageous to testify here about that

20 what happened to you. The question is, our rules provide for the

21 possibility that your testimony as you can see it on your computer, this

22 can be used in other cases in order to avoid that you have to come twice

23 to The Hague. Therefore my question, do you agree that this document is

24 used in other cases as well?

25 A. I'm a very traumatized woman. I somehow managed to go through

Page 9196

1 this, but I'd rather not go any further. I apologise, but I really can't

2 go any further because this is, again, a traumatic experience, and I'm

3 badly shattered already. I cannot bear to talk about this any more about

4 this because it has been 11 years and I want these wounds to heal rather

5 than have them opened over and over again. And may this not happen again

6 ever again.

7 MR. LUKIC: If I may assist, Your Honour, maybe it will be easier

8 in our language.

9 [Interpretation] His Honour is asking you whether you accept that

10 the record that was made of your testimony be used in another case with

11 the same kind of protection here.

12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] What do you mean in another case?

13 You want me to come here again here.

14 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] No, no.

15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Of course it may be used. I'm

16 sorry, I didn't understand. Of course, it may be used. Why not use it

17 again, because what I went through, I'm not ashamed of that. And I've

18 sworn that I will tell the truth.

19 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: It remains only for us to thank you for your

20 testimony, and at least to try to overcome all this what has happened to

21 you. We know it's extremely difficult. But once again, thank you. And

22 have a safe return back to your home country and hometown.

23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you very much.

24 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: You're excused for today. And may I ask the

25 usher to escort you out of the courtroom. Thank you.

Page 9197

1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you very much. All the best

2 to you.

3 [The witness withdrew]

4 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Mr. Lukic, you are prepared for the next

5 witness?

6 MR. LUKIC: I'm prepared but the witness is not Your Honour

7 because we counted that the Prosecution might have some questions and you

8 too so the next witness is not here, Your Honour. And actually, asked for

9 him yesterday, but because of the long testimony this morning of the first

10 witness, I advised the victims and witness unit not to bring him at the

11 end of this day.

12 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: That means that we will proceed tomorrow with

13 the three remaining witnesses being already in The Hague.

14 There was scheduled another 65 ter (i) meeting of one afternoon in

15 the week. I don't see, after having had the meeting yesterday, any

16 necessity. Do the parties agree, or is there any need for having such a

17 65 ter (i) conference once again this week?

18 MR. LUKIC: We don't see any need, and we thank you that we had

19 that meeting outside of the open court.

20 MR. KOUMJIAN: We don't see a need for a meeting, but we reiterate

21 that we're waiting for a witness list that's complete with the full names

22 and diacritics of the witnesses and a summary of what the witnesses will

23 testify to.

24 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May I ask whether or not we can expect a written

25 submission by the Prosecution as regards the remaining part of the motion

Page 9198

1 on mistrial, that is, point (a).

2 MR. KOUMJIAN: No, Your Honour, we did not plan to file anything

3 written because -- we would, if Your Honours believe it would be

4 helpful. We made our position clear that the Defence has failed to

5 specify how any of the information that they did receive that the

6 Prosecution has acknowledged they should have received sooner, but how, if

7 they had received this information sooner, their cross-examination would

8 have been any different for any of the witnesses. I think the information

9 that was provided in those summaries went to issues that the Defence

10 cross-examined the witnesses on the first day of the trial. So we do not

11 believe that any witness's testimony should be stricken or that the

12 cross-examination would have been any different. If the Defence believes

13 that it would be, we have offered to bring the witness back.

14 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Therefore, you make reference to the transcript

15 of yesterday only where I think indeed you gave sufficient reason. As

16 regards the other summaries, after having seen the entire statements at

17 that time, I have to ask the Defence once again, maybe after consultation

18 with the accused in person, is it your position that, having had the

19 possibility now to review these documents, that you insist on a decision

20 on the remaining point (a) of your motion bearing in mind that no doubt,

21 there is a possibility either to resummon or to summon the witness? And

22 therefore, it might be the outcome that no prejudice is the result from

23 this omission of the OTP.

24 MR. LUKIC: I'm sorry that I have to say, but I didn't have time

25 to go through the statements, full statements, we received yesterday

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Page 9200

1 evening because we finished our meeting at 6.00, and then I stayed with

2 the witnesses until 11.00 last night speaking with them. So I really

3 didn't have time to go through the complete statements, and I hope that I

4 will be able to do it the day after tomorrow because tomorrow I have to

5 be -- tonight I have to be with the witnesses again.

6 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Right --

7 MR. LUKIC: But today, we'll provide by the end of the day, we'll

8 provide the Prosecution with a more detailed proffer, and with the

9 properly written names of the witnesses.

10 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Do you agree that we wait with our decision

11 until we have got a final answer on our question as regards the motion for

12 mistrial, maybe after discussing this issue with your client?

13 MR. LUKIC: Yes, I do agree, Your Honour.

14 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: And then finally, as agreed, we will hear the

15 three remaining witnesses tomorrow. And then you will let us know what is

16 your intention whom to summon the three remaining days in December. Also

17 for the transcript, it has to be fixed that there is not only the Monday

18 and Tuesday, but also the Wednesday available for the Defence as to the

19 fact that the plenary of the Judges will take place only on Thursday and

20 Friday. So therefore, as agreed, we expect your answer on Thursday as

21 well as regards these -- the one or two witnesses to be heard on these

22 three days.

23 MR. LUKIC: Hopefully we'll be able to bring more witnesses for

24 these three days, Your Honour. But we'll inform you in any case until

25 Thursday.

Page 9201

1 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Also, only for the purposes of the transcript,

2 the Defence is aware of the fact that in case they shouldn't have the

3 relevant testimonies available for these three days, the Trial Chamber

4 will make use of their rights under Rule 85 V. This is to summon

5 witnesses ex officio.

6 MR. LUKIC: Yes, Your Honour. We are aware of that fact.

7 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you.

8 Any additional comments or administrative matters to be addressed

9 today?

10 MR. LUKIC: We don't have anything else, Your Honour.

11 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: This concludes today's hearing. The trial stays

12 adjourned until tomorrow, 9.00.

13 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned

14 at 1.27 p.m., to be reconvened on Wednesday,

15 the 20th day of November, 2002, at 9.00 a.m.

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