1 Friday, 17 January 2003
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 1.39 p.m.
5 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: A very good afternoon to everybody. May we
6 please hear the case.
7 THE REGISTRAR: Good afternoon. This is Case Number IT-97-24-T,
8 the Prosecutor versus Milomir Stakic.
9 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. And the appearances, please, for the
11 MS. SUTHERLAND: Mr. Nicholas Koumjian, Ann Sutherland, and Ruth
12 Karper for the Prosecution.
13 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. And for the Defence.
14 MR. LUKIC: Good afternoon, Your Honours. Branko Lukic and John
15 Ostojic for the Defence.
16 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. And another additional thank you for
17 preparing us with an additional proffer so that we know what we can expect
18 today. You have seen the time limits of today, and let's try that we can
19 conclude this witness by today. And therefore, without -- explicitly
20 without imposing a time limit now, I would ask the Defence if possible to
21 conclude somewhere after 2 and a half hours, up to 3 hours, and then later
22 on, the Prosecution also limiting itself to the absolute necessary that we
23 then can conclude finally on or about 7.00.
24 I can't see any objections. May I therefore ask the usher to
25 escort the witness into the courtroom. Thank you.
1 Once again, to be on the safe side, no protective measures
2 requested by the Defence?
3 MR. LUKIC: No, Your Honour. No protective measures.
4 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you.
5 [The witness entered court]
6 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Good afternoon, sir. Thank you for coming --
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Good afternoon.
8 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: -- to The Hague. And welcome. Can you hear me
9 in a language you can understand?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can.
11 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May I ask you to give your solemn declaration.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
13 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
14 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you very much. You may be seated. You're
15 a Defence witness. Mr. Lukic, the witness is yours.
16 WITNESS: RADOVAN KREJIC
17 [Witness answered through interpreter]
18 Examined by Mr. Lukic:
19 Q. [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Mr. Krejic.
20 A. Good afternoon.
21 Q. My name is Branko Lukic, and together with John Ostojic, I
22 represent the defence of Dr. Stakic before this Tribunal. Firstly, I
23 would kindly ask you to give us some of your personal data, starting with
24 first things first. Can you please for the record give us your full name,
25 the first name and the last name.
1 A. My name is Radovan Krejic. My father's name was Milos. I was
2 born on the 13th of November, 1946. I live in Prijedor. I've lived
3 there since 1990. Before that, I lived in Sanski Most, which is 30
4 kilometres away from Prijedor. Is there anything else you would like me
5 to tell you?
6 Q. Can you please also tell us your profession.
7 A. I graduated from the law school in Belgrade, and I currently work
8 in the company which deals with the production of energy in the city
9 plant in Prijedor.
10 Q. Did you ever work in the self-interest community of health
12 A. Until four years ago, I worked in that institution, which used to
13 be called the self-interest community of health insurance. Now it's the
14 healthcare fund. So all of my life before that, I've spent working in the
15 institutions providing health-care and looking after health-care.
16 Q. Mr. Krejic, have you ever been a member of any political party and
17 what party was that?
18 A. Yes. Before the war, I was a member of the then communist league
19 of Yugoslavia for a period of time. Immediately before the war, I was a
20 member of the so-called reformist forces of Yugoslavia, which were led by
21 Anto Markovic. That was immediately prior to the beginning of the war.
22 And as of recently, I have been a member of the social democrats, that is,
23 the independent social democrats led by Mr. Milorad Dodik.
24 Q. Have you ever been a member of the Serbian democratic party?
25 A. No, I have never been one of their members. I cooperated with
1 them when they were in power, and I still cooperate with the organs of
2 that party to the extent to which my job is related and connected with the
3 organs of the party.
4 Q. Have you ever been a deputy in the Municipal Assembly of Prijedor?
5 A. For a brief period of time, I was a deputy. I was not elected. I
6 was appointed. But it lasted for a short period of time. I believe it
7 was in late 1993, towards the end of 1993 in any case.
8 Q. 1992 or 1993?
9 A. It was the end of 1992 and beginning of 1993.
10 Q. Were you the president of the commission for social affairs, which
11 was established by the SDS?
12 A. Yes, the SDS, that is, the then president of the SDS, Mr. Simo
13 Miskovic, invited me and suggested that I should run the commission which
14 was in charge of proposing the best organisation of the activities in
15 which I was engaged. So this was part of the overall social services, and
16 I was in charge of health care.
17 Q. As the president of that commission, did you participate at
18 meetings, at SDS meetings?
19 A. On two occasions, I was present at the sessions of the municipal
20 board of the SDS.
21 Q. After your personal data, I would like to ask you something about
22 the year 1992. Firstly, as the director of the self-interest community
23 for health care in charge of the Prijedor region, which municipalities did
24 your office cover?
25 A. We covered four municipalities that belonged to the region of
1 Prijedor at the time. Prijedor, Sanski Most, Bosanska Dubica, and
2 Bosanski Novi, with some 230.000 inhabitants all together.
3 Q. Did you in 1992, in connection with your work, ever talk to
4 Mr. Muhamed Cehajic?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. What was the topic of that conversation? Can you describe how
7 this conversation went on.
8 A. I had several meetings with Mr. Cehajic. He was the president of
9 the Municipal Assembly, and we knew each other well because he used to be
10 my teacher before that in the grammar school. And we also are natives of
11 the same town, of Sanski Most. And if you are referring to the
12 conversation that I had with him regarding the problem of the financing of
13 health care, then the conversation went like this, if I can give you some
14 more detail.
15 Q. Go ahead, please.
16 A. Immediately prior to the beginning of the war, due to the
17 complicated situation that we faced at the time, Muhamed Cehajic as the
18 president of the assembly called me and asked me to -- actually demanded
19 from me to channel the money from the contributions for health care, and
20 that we then channelled to the health-care institutions that shouldn't be
21 channelled in the ratios that were prior to that established in the former
22 self-interest community. That this money should be kept in Prijedor
23 rather to be sent for the financing of health institutions in Bosanska
24 Dubica, Sanski Most, and Bosanski Novi because the SDS was there in
25 power. I believe there was already a confrontation in place between the
1 SDS and the SDA, and I believe that in the municipalities that I have just
2 mentioned, the complete leadership of those municipalities was from the
3 SDS. So he believed that all the funds had to be kept in Prijedor, so
4 that they wouldn't be used for the purposes for which they were not
6 I told him that he was not informed enough about the way we
7 allocated the funds, and I told him that all the funds that we collect
8 from all the employees in the four municipalities are paid into the Giro
9 account of the republican fund in Sarajevo, and then from the republican
10 fund in Sarajevo, according to the allotment, they are then returned to
11 Prijedor to a collective Giro account that I was disposing with. And then
12 I was the one who allocated the funds into all the four municipalities
13 into the so-called basic organisations or the branches which are managed
14 by the buses which are subordinate to me.
15 Q. We are just going to interrupt for a moment, because my learned
16 friend, the Prosecutor, wishes to take the floor.
17 MS. SUTHERLAND: Your Honour, could the witness please be asked to
18 slow down because it's very, very hard to follow at this pace, and I don't
19 think the interpreters would last for another half an hour if we do
20 continue at this speed.
21 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: This is indeed ambiguous. We tried to finalise
22 that as soon as possible but I was aware there were real problems to
23 follow your speech, and I am grateful that you do it this way, but please,
24 slow down a little bit. Thank you for your understanding, and thank you
25 for your intervention.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'll do my best.
2 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
3 Q. So let's try and slow down just a little bit.
4 A. Can I continue?
5 Q. Yes, go on, please.
6 A. So I told Mr. Cehajic as the president of the municipal assembly
7 of Prijedor -- I explained to him how we worked. And since their
8 relations had not changed, we still worked according to the same
9 regulations. I told him that I would continue working in keeping with the
10 regulations that were still in effect. In other words, that I would
11 continue distributing the funds that I receive in the Giro account
12 according to the way that was prescribed for my fund. Mr. Cehajic reacted
13 rather harshly. He threatened me. He used a threatening tone when he
14 asked me to obey him and to keep the money in my Giro account until
15 further notice.
16 I persisted in my views. I did not accept his suggestions. And
17 finally, Mr. Cehajic threatened me that he would remove me from my office
18 of director should I continue to work in that way. I had to draw
19 Mr. Cehajic's attention again to his authority, and I told him that my
20 position and the work that I did was not under the authority of the
21 municipal organs, but that I was rather appointed by my own body which was
22 called the assembly of the self-interest community of Prijedor, which also
23 prescribed regulations for the region of Prijedor in the area of health
24 care, and they were the ones who appointed me as director, and I reported
25 to them for the job that I did.
1 Q. Mr. Cehajic, what was his position at the time?
2 A. As I've already told you, he was the president of the Municipal
3 Assembly of Prijedor.
4 Q. About that time or immediately after that, were you approached by
5 Mr. Mirza Mujadzic, who was the president of the SDA?
6 A. Yes, Mr. Mujadzic was the president of the SDA, and his office
7 happened to be in the same building where I worked. He was on the ground
8 floor and I was on the first floor, one floor above. So we would come
9 across each other very often. We would often see each other,
10 occasionally, or from time to time. He would even pop into my office to
11 have a chat and to exchange views on the situation that we faced and on
12 the possibilities to organise health care because he was a physician, and
13 he was very much interested in what we did. When Mr. Cehajic and I fell
14 out, Dr. Mujadzic came to visit me after that. He must have been informed
15 by Mr. Cehajic what had happened. And he tried to mediate, and he tried
16 to achieve some sort of an understanding. He said that there was no need
17 for any tensions. He said that Mr. Cehajic was not right in asking me to
18 do what he asked me to do.
19 On the second day, one day after that, probably upon the
20 insistence of Mr. Mujadzic, Mr. Cehajic came to my office, and once again
21 we had a conversation about the overall issue, about that problem. And
22 this time, I asked my closest associate, Mr. Sead Cikota to join us in the
23 conversation. He was my deputy in my position of the director of the
24 Prijedor fund. Since he was -- is a Muslim, that is. In the light of the
25 overall situation that prevailed at the time, I believe it was best for
1 him to join us in the conversation in order to help my positions be
2 understood as best as possible. I wanted to continue working as I did
3 before that. And that's what I wanted him to help me with.
4 After that conversation, Mr. Cehajic, so to say, admitted that my
5 views were right, but still harboured ill feelings towards me. And that
6 persisted throughout the future period. The conversation showed that I
7 was absolutely right in terms of the implementation of the regulations
8 that were then in effect.
9 Q. Did Mr. -- Is Mr. Sead Cikota still alive?
10 A. Yes, he is still alive. Mr. Cikota was in some sort of a prison
11 during the crisis period in the summer of 1992, and later on he was
12 released. It was proven that he was innocent. And for a brief period of
13 time, he was in Trnopolje in the reception centre; and later on, at his
14 own request, he left and went to(redacted). And he still resides there with
15 his family. He comes from (redacted) very often. We are now very good
16 friends. He is now retired. We helped him to get his pension. He
17 receives his pensions -- pension regularly. He visited me last new year,
18 and if you need, you can check that with -- all this with Mr. Cikota.
19 Q. When you say that he was incarcerated for a brief period of time,
20 are you referring to the investigation centre in Omarska?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. From the investigation centre in Omarska, was he transferred to
24 A. Yes, this is what I said.
25 Q. Did you visit him there in Trnopolje, and what you see there?
1 A. I visited him once after I had been informed that he was in
2 Trnopolje. Trnopolje was very close to Prijedor. And I was told that I
3 could easily go there, that -- and since those were all refugees together
4 with an associate of ours, who was formerly the director of the hospital,
5 Mr. Rodic, Juto Rodic, I went to Trnopolje, and I saw Mr. Cikota. I
6 spent some time with him. I thought maybe I could give him a ride home.
7 But he insisted on staying there because he had still not arranged his
8 departure papers. He wanted to go abroad, and his papers were still not
9 ready for that. He had still not done that.
10 Q. We are now talking about the year 1992. Before the war broke out,
11 before the takeover of Prijedor, did Muslims, Croats, and Serbs leave
12 Prijedor? Can you tell us if you are aware of that? When did you become
13 aware of that? When did you first notice that, and who was leaving?
14 A. It was the population that was leaving Prijedor. I wouldn't say
15 Muslims, Croats, Serbs. Everybody was leaving towards the end of 1991,
16 throughout 1991 when the war broke out in Croatia and when the tensions
17 increased in the former Yugoslavia and in Bosnia and Herzegovina. When
18 the situation became complicated in the politics, people were scared.
19 They were afraid that the conflicts would break out in Prijedor, and they
20 started leaving. They were headed for different areas of Yugoslavia, and
21 even abroad.
22 MS. SUTHERLAND: I'm sorry to interrupt again, Your Honour, but
23 out of an abundance of caution, would we be able to have the country that
24 appears on page 9, lines 11 and 12 redacted from the transcript.
25 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Yes. If we want to be extremely cautious, it
1 seems to be better. May I ask Madam Registrar to redact the country of
2 residence of the third person mentioned from the transcript, please.
3 Thank you.
4 Please continue.
5 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. Did you and when send from Prijedor any members of your family?
7 A. Yes, I did. I think it was in April my daughter left, together
8 with my daughter-in-law. My sister-in-law, my brother's wife, she was
9 about to give birth, and she had to be put away somewhere safe so that she
10 could give birth peacefully. So I took the opportunity, so to speak, and
11 I helped my daughter and my sister-in-law to go to Novi Sad so they could
12 be in a safe place. My daughter, for her education, and my sister-in-law
13 for her birth. And then later on, I also sent my son away to Vojvodina
14 for his education so that he could attend school regularly.
15 Q. Apart from people leaving Prijedor, those who were in Prijedor who
16 were leaving, was anyone arriving in Prijedor at that same time?
17 A. Those who were leaving Prijedor were mostly students, children,
18 women, unemployed women; those who were in a position to leave Prijedor
19 without any consequences for their jobs. Later on, some even quit their
20 jobs and left as things got worse. People were arriving in Prijedor,
21 mostly people from Croatia, because the war had already begun in Croatia,
22 and all those who could, all those who had family in Prijedor or business
23 connections, those who had someone to go to, they came. So both Prijedor
24 and Sanski Most received a lot of people because there were many people
25 from our region who worked in Croatia or in Slovenia very often. First,
1 their families came, and then after that men followed suit. They would
2 come to Prijedor and also to the other towns in the Bosanska Krajina
4 Q. What was by and large the ethnicity of people who were arriving in
5 Prijedor? And did this already begin in 1991, and did it continue in
7 A. Yes, that's correct. Mostly this began in 1999 [sic], but then
8 the scale of the whole thing kept increasing. In the early days, people
9 of all ethnic backgrounds were arriving. It was more important where
10 someone was actually from physically, where they lived, than their
11 ethnicity. Most often the people arriving were Serbs because there were
12 very many Serbs working in the other republics. But then Muslims and
13 Croats kept coming, too, those who had family in Prijedor, Sanski Most, or
14 any of the other towns. It was quite simple. People were trying to get
15 away from a war-torn area.
16 Q. The arrival of these refugees, did it cause problems in terms of
17 financing health care, health insurance, in the Prijedor area?
18 A. Whenever you have a huge influx of population, expenditure tends
19 to rise. It costs money to receive these people. Prior to that,
20 obviously there were requests for health insurance in our health
21 institution, in our health institutions, and those were on the rise. It
22 was necessary to get extra funds to get enough money to give these people
23 proper treatment. Mostly, we were talking about children who had a right
24 to free medical assistance regardless of whether they had health insurance
25 or not because those were the regulations in place then as now. Children
1 up to 15 years of age, and elderly people above 60 years of age had a
2 right to free medical care regardless of whether they were paying
3 contributions or not. And from that point of view, we had an obligation
4 to secure the finances needed to give those people medical treatment.
5 Q. Did you at that time address the republican health fund in
6 Sarajevo to help you with that situation?
7 A. Yes, we did. We looked at our finances, and knew exactly how
8 much money we needed to secure the bare minimum of what was needed in
9 terms of providing these people who kept coming in with medical
10 assistance. I first addressed my own director, and the organs of the
11 republican fund, the bodies of the republican fund for help. Because as
12 part of the republican fund, we had solidarity funds, the so-called
13 solidarity funds, which means that part of the republican funds would be
14 set aside, that was 10 per cent at that time, for the solidarity funds to
15 help the areas which were undeveloped, so to speak, or to send assistance
16 in emergency cases. As those funds, those 10 per cent were insufficient,
17 I also spoke to municipal assemblies, or the relevant bodies in the
18 municipal assemblies that had to do with health care.
19 I spoke to the municipal bodies in Prijedor, Sanski Most, Bosanska
20 Dubica, and Bosanski Novi. I requested additional funds so that we would
21 be able to cover the extra expenses incurred by the need to provide these
22 new people with medical treatment, all the people who were coming in.
23 Q. How did you eventually solve this problem, the problem that came
24 about when a great number of refugees came to the different municipalities
25 in Bosanska Krajina?
1 A. We did receive additional funds from the republican solidarity
2 funds, and the relevant organs of the municipalities that I referred to,
3 the four municipalities, granted us the possibility of introducing
4 additional rates of contribution for all those who were employed in our
5 region in order to get enough money, get enough funds, to provide the
6 people who had arrived with proper medical assistance. We agreed on this
7 throughout the different finance departments of these four
8 municipalities. And then our own bodies adopted a decision where the
9 exact amounts of this additional contribution were defined from which
10 the -- our extra expenses would then be financed.
11 Q. In addition to the increased need due to the influx of refugees,
12 did you at that time also have problems with supplies? Because the
13 previous supply lines had been cut because of the war in Slovenia and
15 A. Well, yes. Usually, before that situation came about, we used the
16 supply lines which originated most often in Zagreb and Ljubljana. Very
17 often from Belgrade and Novi Sad, too. We used some of the capacities in
18 Sarajevo, too. But there were obviously transportation problems and
19 problems arose in our communication with our former partners. So as I was
20 the one who alongside with the other directors of health institutions, I'm
21 talking about pharmacies and hospitals, was in charge of financing the
22 whole thing, we agreed to set up communication with companies based in
23 Serbia, because they were still in a position to provide us with the
24 necessary medicines and medical equipment.
25 Even from Slovenia and from the Pliva company in Zagreb, we
1 could still obtain certain things that we needed. But only through
2 companies based in Serbia, for the simple reason that there was no
3 communication at that time between Croatia, Slovenia, and Bosnia. So we
4 used companies based in Belgrade to get certain medicines that were only
5 produced by the Pliva company in Zagreb, and that were sold across
6 Europe. That's why even during the war we were able to obtain these
7 products in Prijedor for the newborn children. Those were mostly
8 anti-tuberculosis medicines and that kind of thing.
9 Q. You've already said, but can you please elaborate now, the
10 hierarchy of your own self-interest organisation or the fund and the
11 relation between this -- with the Municipal Assembly and its executive
13 A. We were organised at the Republican level, the Republican level of
14 Bosnia and Herzegovina. There was such a thing as the republican fund or
15 the republican SIZ as we used to refer to it, for health insurance.
16 Within the framework of the republican SIZ, the fund, we had regional
17 organisations. Those were branch offices of health insurance across the
18 Prijedor region, the Banja Luka region, the Tuzla region, the Mostar
19 region, and so on and so forth. I think there was eight such regions all
20 together. What was the hierarchy? It was from the top, that's the
21 republican level, through the branch offices throughout the regions, down
22 to the low-level basic offices as we referred to them at that time in
23 municipalities. So every municipality had a branch office for health
24 insurance where health cards were issued, and people would go there for
25 their basic rights that they were -- things they were entitled to under
1 the health insurance policies.
2 We collected the funds for health insurance, and we were in charge
3 of distributing the funds down to the branch offices. We did not have a
4 direct relationship with the municipal organs, I would say, because we
5 were working in a field which was vertically linked from Sanski Most all
6 the way to up Sarajevo. That's how we used to define it. Our only
7 obligation to the municipal bodies was to report once a year and give them
8 the information that they demanded from us. Those were data on the
9 general health situation among the population, because they had an
10 official in the municipality who was in charge of the health insurance.
11 And our fund would then forward the information demanded by their officer,
12 and then together we would draw up an annual report on the health
13 situation among the population in the area that we covered. It was the
14 usual sort of information, birth rate, death rate, the amount of medicines
15 that was used up throughout the year in the municipality. All the
16 information that was relevant for health insurance. And then this report
17 would be forwarded to the municipal bodies, and I'm talking about the
18 Executive Board. And through the Executive Board, the report would reach
19 the Municipal Assembly.
20 Once a year, they would review these reports, and they would send
21 us their feedback or their proposals, if they had any in reaction to our
23 Q. Thank you very much. At the level of the former Yugoslavia, was
24 there an association of communities, and what was its purpose?
25 A. Yes, that's one thing I forgot to say. We weren't directly linked
1 to each other within that association, but our republican fund was part of
2 the association of health care communities across the former Yugoslavia.
3 There were six such funds within the association, and the job of this
4 association of communities was to coordinate the work of all the
5 republican funds, the SIZ organisations, the self-interest organisations,
6 and to adopt the norms and the regulations that would be valid and binding
7 for all the republican SIZ organisations. Those were the basic
8 regulations mostly governing the issues concerning medical treatment
9 provided to citizens from one -- from a different republic, medical
10 treatment given them in the territory of a different republic.
11 Q. The Municipal Assembly or its Executive Board, in addition to
12 having the power to demand information for you -- from you, did they in
13 any way have the power to govern your work or to give you -- or to give
14 orders to any of the organisational units within your fund?
15 A. No. In practical terms, we were not directly in touch with the
16 municipal bodies. As I said, the contact we had was based on these
17 reports. We would send them reports on our work.
18 Q. Following the takeover, you addressed Mr. -- Dr. Milomir Stakic.
19 Will you please tell us why you addressed him and what you talked about?
20 A. In the period when the takeover took place in Prijedor, I was gone
21 from Prijedor for a while, for a week. I spent a week in Yugoslavia. And
22 when I was back, I heard about what had happened. I called Dr. Stakic
23 because I knew him personally. He was a doctor who worked in our -- who
24 was a part of our health system. And I asked him in connection with what
25 I heard had happened, whether there were any new instructions concerning
1 our own work. And he said that there would be no changes, and that we
2 should just continue working as before and that our fund would keep on
3 operating just like before. He said the only thing I should do is stick
4 to the regulations.
5 Q. Your health insurance fund after the takeover, how did it treat
6 its own holders of health insurance? Did you treat people differently
7 depending on their nationality, on their ethnicity, or did you give the
8 same kind of service to everyone, or did it depend on anything else?
9 A. As there had been no changes in the regulations until the next
10 summer, because that's when certain regulations, certain changes to the
11 regulations were in place, we just continued work as before. There were
12 no changes in the practical sense. It's only that in some areas, the
13 need -- the demand for health insurance increased, and in some it
14 decreased. I mean the war later on and people being wounded. But we
15 worked the same way as before. We just checked the patients' IDs, we
16 would send them somewhere to be treated. We would refer them to doctors.
17 So we never distinguished between people. I would sign, for example,
18 references for someone to be sent for treatment outside Bosnia and
19 Herzegovina, to Novi Sad or to Belgrade. And believe me, never, not on a
20 single occasion did I check who was the person being sent. It was an
21 automatic process. We had a committee on which doctors sat from the
22 different areas of medicine, and they would usually write up an opinion
23 that a certain patient was to be sent to a particular kind of medical
24 institution. I would just sign this reference, this decision, and most
25 often I didn't even look at the name of the person being referred. I just
1 wanted to see whether qualified people, doctors, did indeed believe that
2 this person was to be sent to a particular institution. And it was an
3 automatic thing for me. I would just sign these papers.
4 However, if I may just add something that I've just remembered,
5 later when mobilisation callups started arriving, and the number of people
6 leaving for -- to join the army increased, the secretariat for National
7 Defence in Prijedor requested that I inform them about being -- that the
8 people who had joined the army would be sent for medical treatment outside
9 of Bosnia and Herzegovina. I suppose they were afraid that there would be
10 subjective decisions concerning where soldiers were being sent for
11 treatment. And they insisted to have an insight into the basis for our
12 decisions to send people for treatment to Belgrade, that sort of thing.
13 And during a certain period, we did inform the secretariat for National
14 Defence who we were sending and where. We would provide them with lists
15 of patients being sent away for treatment. And this went on for about a
16 month. And then after a month or two, this ceased altogether, because
17 they were satisfied, the people from the secretariat, that we were basing
18 our references on objective factors.
19 Q. Did you also provide the funds for the treatment of people in the
20 most serious cases, even for those who did not pay the contributions?
21 A. I already said that it was our legal obligation to provide the
22 funds for the treatment of children and elderly people. In the war, it
23 was very rarely that we checked whether contributions had actually been
24 paid. The situation was very difficult. The financial situation was very
25 difficult. And in dire straits, obviously the level of solidarity among
1 people tends to increase. So when we were dealing with serious illnesses
2 and serious cases, we would grant the treatment even for the most serious
3 cases without checking whether the contributions had been paid. We would
4 send them to the largest clinical hospitals, but in such cases we would
5 also send the request to the ministry of finances to get a refund on
6 those expenses. According to the then-prevailing regulations, the state
7 had to provide for the health care of those people who are not insured,
8 who are not beneficiaries of health insurance, but for procedural reasons,
9 in order to speed up the treatment of these people, we would send them to
10 the clinics first, and then when the clinics would in turn send us their
11 bills, we would then send our request for refunds to the state fund.
12 Q. You mentioned the situations in which you sent people outside of
13 the borders of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and you told us how this was funded
14 and you explained to us what the procedure looked like for anybody who
15 wished to be treated outside Bosnia and Herzegovina. Did these persons
16 have to have some special permits or authorisations in order to leave
17 Bosnia and Herzegovina and to travel outside Bosnia and Herzegovina? And
18 who was it who issued such permits?
19 A. When the conflicts escalated, all the citizens fit for military
20 service, whenever they travelled, for whatsoever reason, they had to
21 obtain a permit from the competent military bodies. Those permits were
22 issued by the secretariat for the National Defence. And those permits
23 were used to cross the border towards Yugoslavia. And when we travelled
24 throughout the region, since there were the so-called checkpoints between
25 different towns, we would be issued by some sort of a laissez-passer or
1 permits from our police, from the secretariat for the interior. I had
2 such a permit, such a laissez-passer, which was a permanent pass, because
3 I would go very often to Sanski Most, Bosanska Dubica, or Bosanski Novi to
4 perform my official duties. And I was issued that pass by the chief of
5 the security.
6 Q. You're referring to the chief of the public security station?
7 A. Yes, the police.
8 Q. Let's just clarify something with regard to the medical board, the
9 board of experts who were in charge of approving people's departure for
10 treatment outside Bosnia and Herzegovina. Was that a novelty or was it
11 something that existed even before the war and that exists even today?
12 A. These were medical boards who are put in place in order to avoid
13 the misuse and -- of health funds, because the expenses of treatment in
14 the biggest clinical hospitals tend to be very high, that's why these
15 medical boards are in charge of inspecting the medical documents prepared
16 by the patient's doctor, based on their insight and based on their
17 experience and expertise, they will justify the need for the person to be
18 sent outside the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina for any kind of
20 Within the borders of the republic, we were able to refer a
21 patient to any health institution. However, whenever the treatment was
22 requested to be performed in a large clinic, a board should be set up to
23 review these documents. These boards existed before the war and they
24 still exist today for such purposes.
25 The board -- such a board usually consists of specialists working
1 in the Prijedor hospital and health centres or medical centres which are
2 covered by the Prijedor SIZ, the self-interest community. A permanent
3 member of the commission was a doctor who was my assistant and who was an
4 affiliate with the self-interest health insurance.
5 Q. Can you please put in perspective the relationship between your
6 fund and the military fund of health insurance. Can you tell us whether
7 these are two separate, different, institutions?
8 A. They are completely separate. We did not have anything whatsoever
9 to do with the treatment of the beneficiaries who were in the army. They
10 had their separate insurance, and their treatment was funded from the
11 funds at the level of the republican budget. This is the budget that was
12 allocated for the ministry of Defence, and from those funds, some funds
13 were allocated for the treatment of members of the army. We did not have
14 any contacts with the military health-care institution, with the military
15 insurance. Our only contact with them was in cases when we referred our
16 patients, that is, civilians, to military health-care institutions,
17 military hospitals. And that happened before the war; that still happens
18 today in cases when a patient requires the highest level of treatment.
19 And in those cases, patients would be referred to the military medical
20 academy in Belgrade, which is the largest and the most state-of-the-art
21 institution in the former Yugoslavia, and we still do the same today. But
22 that is the contact with the hospital which is a military hospital, but
23 also admits a number of civilians. And this is where our job stops.
24 The military medical academy provides the treatment and sends us
25 the bills, bills our fund for covering the expenses of such a treatment.
1 And this is the only contact we had with military institutions. I would
2 go from time to time to the military hospital in Belgrade to regulate our
3 financial relationships with that institution.
4 Q. If any of your beneficiaries were to be injured, would you also
5 cover the expenses of their treatment, or would it be the military
6 health-insurance fund who would be paying?
7 A. As a rule, it should be the military insurance fund who provides
8 for all the injured persons from the moment they issued the mobilisation
9 callups to the moment when they returned home. But we did have sporadic
10 situations due to the lack of material, equipment, both in our civilian
11 fund and in the army fund. We would from time to time encounter some
12 problems with regard to -- as to who was under the obligation to pay for
13 the treatment of the injured persons. We encountered a situation which
14 lasted for a long period of time during the war. The martial law was not
15 in place, and military authorities would say that the able-bodied men were
16 only called up for military drills, and they thought that it would be the
17 civilian insurance -- health-insurance fund who had to pay for the
18 treatment of their -- of the injured people.
19 So we did that. And later on, this situation was resolved amongst
20 the funds at the republican level. We did not have enough money to
21 provide for the treatment of all the civilian beneficiaries, let alone
22 those who were injured when they were doing their military service.
23 Q. During the period between April and September of 1992, did you
24 ever talk to the chief of the public security station in Prijedor,
25 Mr. Simo Drljaca?
1 A. Yes, I did.
2 Q. What can you recall from those contacts?
3 A. I knew Drljaca, the chief of the public security station, from
4 before. We did not have many official contacts because we did not have
5 anything in common in our two jobs. But I visited Mr. Drljaca at the
6 beginning of the war because I knew him personally, and I tried to see if
7 he could help me when he -- when the gentleman that I had mentioned,
8 Mr. Sead Cikota was in Trnopolje, he was my close associate. And I
9 thought that I should help him.
10 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's correction: The camp was
12 A. So I visited Mr. Drljaca in his office, and I asked him to help
13 Sead to be released from the investigation centre. I talked to him for a
14 long time. I wasn't well-informed for the reasons that Mr. Cikota had
15 been taken to the investigation centre. And since I had known him for a
16 long period of time, I did not see any valid reason for him to be
17 interrogated, and I said to the chief of the public security station, and
18 I asked him to speed up the procedure of Mr. Cikota's interrogation
19 because I didn't see any elements for this man to be subject to any
21 He then told me that if what I was saying was correct, that there
22 shouldn't be any problems, that he is there together with a group of
23 people who are fit for military service, militarily-aged men, and that
24 after the investigation that had to be carried out according to their
25 regulations, and if there were no elements for criminal prosecution, that
1 he would be released. He convinced me, and he promised me, that he would
2 speed up the procedure. I insisted on the procedure to be sped up because
3 I thought there were no elements for the investigation in the first
4 place. And that's how we left it off. He promised me that the procedure
5 would be sped up, and that everything would be over soon.
6 Q. Who was it who told you that Mr. Sead Cikota was incarcerated?
7 A. From his wife. She called me on the telephone and told me that
8 her husband had been taken away to Omarska. She didn't actually know
9 where he was taken, but she had been informed that he would be taken to
10 Omarska. And she asked for my assistance.
11 Q. Why did you approach Mr. Drljaca and ask for his assistance and
12 possible release of your friend and colleague?
13 A. Because he was the chief of the public security station, and I
14 also told you that I had known him personally. So I believed that he was
15 in the position to help me to resolve that problem, the problem of that
17 Q. Do you know that in October 1992, the party in power in Prijedor
18 at that time, the SDS, started an initiative for the removal of
19 Dr. Milomir Stakic as the president of the Municipal Assembly?
20 A. Yes, I'm familiar with that.
21 Q. Will you please tell us what you know about that.
22 A. I was not really involved in politics at that time, not much. But
23 I was -- I was in town, and you know rumours did go around. People knew a
24 lot of things even if you weren't involved in politics. And I knew that
25 inside the SDS, there were certain clashes - that was the word around the
1 town - clashes between leaders, both in the SDS and in the municipal
2 military and police bodies. Word was that Dr. Stakic and Srdjo Srdic, who
3 for a period of time was the president of the SDS and a deputy, were not
4 really getting along in terms of their opinions. I knew both of them,
5 because they both come from the medical field. And they said that
6 Dr. Stakic and Srdjo Srdic were not really getting along well, and that
7 their opinions were differing. But word was that their clash was quite
8 serious, and that there were serious problems between them. And also that
9 there were problems between the president of the SDS, the former president
10 of the SDS, Srdjo Srdic, and Simo. That's also another thing that was
11 being talked about. And I think for the same reasons, and at the request
12 of a certain number of people from the municipal board of the SDS, there
13 was a request for Dr. Stakic to be removed. On one later occasion, I
14 attended a meeting of the municipal board of the SDS. I was a member of
15 the committee for health -- for organising the health situation. And I
16 was giving a report on the work of that commission. And at that meeting,
17 requests were repeated for the removal of Dr. Stakic.
18 MR. LUKIC: [In English] Your Honour, may I ask now to go into
19 private session for a few moments. We have to mention some names,
21 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I can see no objections. Private session,
23 [Private session]
12 Page 10558 – redacted – private session
12 [Open session]
13 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Confirmed. You may continue.
14 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Your Honour.
15 Q. [Interpretation] We discussed Dr. Stakic. Can you tell us when
16 you met him and how well you know him?
17 A. I've known Dr. Stakic since the days he started working as a
18 doctor. I've spent practically the whole of my working life with the
19 exception of the last several years working as part of the health system.
20 I was assistant to the head of the health centre in Sanski Most. I was
21 assistant to the head of the regional medical centre in Prijedor. And
22 then I was the director of the SIZ fund. I knew doctors who were active.
23 Dr. Stakic was very young when before the war he started working as a
24 doctor in Omarska. I didn't know him very well at that time, but I got to
25 know him better later as the vice-president of the municipality, then
1 later as the president of the Municipal Assembly. And especially when he
2 became the head of the health centre, we were then very close associates.
3 We worked closely together. It was the nature of my job. I collaborated
4 very closely with the heads of the health centres and hospitals.
5 Q. Can you please, in a few words, describe Dr. Stakic's
7 A. I believe Dr. Stakic is a young, ambitious doctor. He was
8 considered a very successful doctor, too. My impression throughout the
9 period when we worked together was I hope he won't get angry now, but he
10 struck me as a person without enough experience in politics. I was his
11 senior, and sometimes we would talk, and I would warn him a number of
12 times about his lack of experience in politics. I told him that I didn't
13 think it was a good time for him to be involved in politics, given the
14 general circumstances and the times, given the responsibility that I
15 thought was too much for him to handle in view of his experience. I
16 openly advised him to go back to working as a doctor, especially in that
17 period when he was under attack while he was the president of the
19 I advised him to grab the opportunity and withdraw from politics
20 and go back to working as a doctor, because that was where he could really
21 make an important contribution. I knew he had been a brilliant student.
22 I believed that he would be much more useful to the community working as a
23 doctor than working as a politician. I think he is a very humanitarian
24 person and a qualified physician. I really think it's such a shame that
25 he didn't spend the whole of this period working as a doctor instead.
1 Q. Thank you very much. Now, I have a question about you. You said
2 that you had been co-opted as a deputy to the Municipal Assembly of
3 Prijedor. Were you removed from that position, and what was the reason
4 for your removal? Tell us, if you know.
5 A. As I told you, I was never a member of the SDS. But I was closely
6 acquainted with Simo Miskovic, the president of the SDS. And we spent
7 part of our childhood together. We grew up in the same building in Sanski
8 Most. My father worked for the local court there, and his father worked
9 for the police. So they also knew each other. But then at one point,
10 they moved from Sanski Most, and then we met up again in Prijedor. I
11 considered him a friend. When he became the president of the SDS, he
12 insisted that I join the SDS. I was not inclined to join the party, to
13 become a member of that party. You know what the times were like. There
14 was a war. And I had my own take on that. I thought that there was -- in
15 such a situation, there was nothing much to be done about it because the
16 interests in a time of war were different and that party conflicts only
17 had a negative effect on the entire -- on the overall situation in our
19 We talked, and I told him that I was perfectly prepared to help as
20 a professional and that I would use my qualifications and my knowledge to
21 give my contribution to improve the circumstances in our area and the
22 living conditions. It was on the basis of that that Simo first proposed
23 me -- propose to appoint me as a member of the social affairs. He knew
24 that I was familiar with my own area of work because I was very
25 experienced. And in another conversation later on, he told me that the
1 municipal board of the SDS and the Municipal Assembly, the composition
2 of -- the people who were there working as deputies or board members, that
3 their intellectual level was not particularly high. So he asked me, and a
4 number of other intellectuals in Prijedor who were not members of the SDS,
5 to become members -- to become deputies to the assembly. He said they had
6 the statutory right to increase the numbers of deputies in the assembly,
7 and they wanted the ten of us, we were a group of ten people, to join also
8 to help with our professionalism. So we accepted this proposal. And I
9 attended several of the assembly sessions. Unfortunately, this coincided
10 with the time Dr. Stakic was being removed, so tensions were high between
11 the two opposing groups. And whatever was happening in the municipal
12 board of the SDS, what I witnessed myself during that meeting, there were
13 two or maybe even three distinct groups within the SDS. So this rift was
14 reflected during sessions of the assembly.
15 I just didn't think it was worth it for me to join the work of the
16 assembly. So I only went to a couple of sessions, you know, and then I
17 stopped going. We stopped going regularly. And then again, the radical
18 group gained the upper hand in their requests to cut down the number of
19 deputies to the assembly. So we were simply -- we were simply wiped off
20 the list of deputies, and that's how our activity in the assembly came to
21 an end.
22 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I think this is an appropriate time for taking
23 the break. The trial stays adjourned until half past 3.00.
24 --- Recess taken at 3.01 p.m.
25 --- On resuming at 3.37 p.m.
1 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: And the Defence may continue immediately when,
2 of course, the witness is in the courtroom, no doubt.
3 MR. KOUMJIAN: While we're waiting, Your Honour, could I pass on a
4 request. Our scheduling is a little complicated because of Ms. Balaban
5 and what's going on in the Brdjanin case, and we are wondering,
6 specifically Ms. Korner, who was going to cross-examine Ms. Balaban, and
7 has a witness who will be finishing Tuesday afternoon in Brdjanin, whether
8 it's possible we could do a full morning session to 1.45 here, and not
9 have the afternoon. And that would at least give the Defence at least one
10 day next week to meet with their client or go back early. But that is our
11 request for Your Honours to consider if possible.
12 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I was afraid you would come with this. We'll
13 decide it during the break.
14 Please continue.
15 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Can we continue, Mr. Krejic?
17 A. Yes, please.
18 Q. Are you aware of the fact that Dr. Milomir Stakic was a member of
19 the people's radical party, Veljko Guberina?
20 A. Now I know. At the beginning when I first met him, I didn't know
21 that. Later on in conversations, I learned that Dr. Stakic was not a
22 member of the SDS, and that was rather strange, the fact that he had
23 remained the president of the Municipal Assembly when the SDS took over.
24 Q. So when you were mentioning the radical part that wanted to
25 remove him from the position of the president of the Municipal Assembly,
1 you didn't mean the radical party?
2 A. No, no, I meant people who wanted to have the upper hand, who
3 wanted more powerful authority in the municipality.
4 Q. Also, in one place, you mentioned that Simo proposed that you
5 should occupy a certain position. Since in this case there are several
6 people that we are dealing with with the same name, Simo, who did you have
7 in mind?
8 A. I meant Simo Miskovic, the president of the SDS.
9 Q. Although you never worked either in the police or in the army, as
10 a person with a degree in law, do you know whether municipal bodies such
11 as the Municipal Assembly and the Executive Board could issue orders
12 either to the army or to the police?
13 A. They couldn't, no chance.
14 Q. Now, I would like to ask you something which I was not aware of
15 when we're talking about Bosanska Krajina. Why was Bosanska Krajina
16 particularly against the secession of Bosnia and Herzegovina from
17 Yugoslavia? What happened after World War II with people from
18 Bosanska Krajina?
19 A. Bosanska Krajina and the area of Croatia inhabited mostly by the
20 Serbian population, that is Korbon Banja and Lika, those who were
21 bordering on Bosanska Krajina had a large number of inhabitants who after
22 the Second World War in the years 1946, 1947, and 1948, had been moved to
23 Vojvodina to its parts called Banat, Backa, and Srem. And actually
24 peoples were split, families were split. There were parts of the family
25 who had to move to the parts of Vojvodina which had been liberated by the
1 then people's army, and the other parts of those families had remained
2 behind. So there are very few families, especially among the Serbian
3 population, who don't have relatives in Vojvodina, in Belgrade, and in
4 other larger cities of Serbia. And that is why Bosanska Krajina is very
5 closely connected with Serbia, and to be more precise, with Vojvodina.
6 And that is why the Serbian population from Bosanska Krajina wanted Bosnia
7 and Herzegovina to remain as an integral part of Yugoslavia. That is why
8 even to this very day, ties, special ties are being set up between Bosnia
9 and Herzegovina and Serbia, in order to provide for the uninterrupted flow
10 of people who have blood ties, who have family connections. That's one of
11 the reasons.
12 Q. When you, prior to the 1st of May, that is, prior to the 30th of
13 April, left on business to Serbia, how did you return, and why did you
15 A. I left on the eve of the 1st of May. I had some business that
16 took me there. And on the other hand, my daughter had already been in
17 Novi Sad, and that's why I took the opportunity. We had three days off
18 for the bank holiday of the 1st of May. We didn't work for three days.
19 So I went first to Belgrade, and then to Vojvodina, and I was supposed to
20 return to work, but the connections were interrupted. The roads were not
21 passable between Bosnia and Serbia, so I had to stay on waiting for an
22 opportunity to get back. I couldn't take the car back, but I took a plane
23 from Belgrade to Banja Luka. I had to wait a few days. There were a lot
24 of passengers who wanted to get on that same plane. There was just one
25 plane a day flying from Belgrade to Banja Luka and vice versa.
1 Q. What did you hear? Why were the roads not passable back at the
2 beginning of May throughout Bosnia and Herzegovina?
3 A. When I was on my way to Serbia, on the eve of the 1st of May, I
4 could -- I knew already which parts of the ethnically split country I
5 could go through. There were guards in front of every town, some of the
6 guards were police guards, some of them were mixed guards with the
7 police. And at places, there were also armed people wearing some sorts of
8 uniforms, and those uniforms usually were used for other purposes rather
9 than patrols, but in some places they were worn by the patrols. In front
10 of Tuzla, I was stopped by people wearing uniforms that are -- employees
11 used to wear in the time of national disasters. Those were the civilian
12 protection uniforms. In front of Tuzla, the guards that stopped us wore
13 such uniforms. They had hunting rifles. They pulled over cars. They
14 searched the cars. They inspected our IDs. And after a short discussion,
15 they let us continue because they didn't find anything in our car that
16 they would find disturbing. There were already such tensions that one
17 could smell conflicts in the area. The situation was rather tense, and it
18 forebode war.
19 Q. When you returned to Prijedor between April and September 1992,
20 did anything happen to you, any incident involving a police member when
21 you didn't have your driving license on you?
22 A. Yes. This is a good illustration of the atmosphere that could be
23 felt in the town at the time. I was driving my car, and I didn't have my
24 driving license on. I was not aware of that. I had all the other
25 documents on me. And the policeman stopped me in the night hours. It was
1 around 10.00 in the evening. And since I didn't have my traffic license
2 and driving license, he wanted me to hand over the keys to my car, and I
3 didn't want to do that. And I told him that I would go and get my driving
4 license because I didn't live far from the place where he pulled me over.
5 He allowed me to do that but he didn't allow me to take the car. He asked
6 me to go on foot. When I got back, there was no policeman, and my
7 briefcase was missing from the car. He had taken my briefcase and
8 vanished. I found my briefcase a few days later -- actually, it was a
9 child on the way back from school who found it. It was somewhere cast
10 aside, and the documents were there. But everything else that could be
11 used for general purposes like calculator, pencil, everything else was
13 I complained. On the following day, I called Simo Drljaca, the
14 chief of the public security station whom I knew, and I just wanted to
15 draw his attention to the behaviour of the members of the police. I asked
16 him to check what was going on. And when I told him there was just one
17 policeman, he told me this was not a police patrol, but it was somebody
18 else. He said: "This is not one of my guys." Later on he explained to
19 me that people who had been called up and given reserve police uniforms
20 were still using those uniforms when they go on stealing sprees, when they
21 wanted to rob somebody. And these people were not members of the regular
23 Q. Between the 30th of April, 1992, and the end of September 1992,
24 were you aware of the existence of the Crisis Staff of the Municipal
25 Assembly of Prijedor?
1 A. Yes, I was.
2 Q. Do you know when the Crisis Staff was established?
3 A. I don't know the date, but I know it was sometime in the month of
4 May, after the takeover of Prijedor. I believe that it was sometime in
5 May that this Crisis Staff was set up.
6 Q. The first half of May, mid-May, the latter part of May?
7 A. I believe that it was in the second -- the latter part of May
8 because I returned from Belgrade on the 8th. So I believe that it was
9 after that, and I really can't remember the exact date.
10 Q. Did you have any contacts with the members of the Crisis Staff
11 once that body was set up?
12 A. If my memory serves me right, there was a Crisis Staff, and there
13 was the Executive Board in the Municipal Assembly. So whenever I had
14 contacts with the municipality, it was with the members of the department
15 for finances. I don't know whether Ranko Travar was a member of the
16 Crisis Staff. If he was, then I also had contacts with the Crisis Staff.
17 Ranko Travar was in charge of the finances of the municipality. He was in
18 charge of the financial policies of the Prijedor municipality. And since
19 my institution was also an institution that looked after the financing of
20 the health care in the municipality, I had contacts with Ranko Travar,
21 sometimes with Dr. Kovacevic, and sometimes with Dr. Stakic as physicians
22 who were close to me by the area of their professional activity. And as
23 for the Crisis Staff, as the body of authority, I didn't have any contacts
24 with them because we were an institution which was vertically connected
25 with Banja Luka and with Sarajevo.
1 Q. Did you see Mr. Travar in his office which belonged to him as a
2 member of the Executive Board?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Does that same apply to Mr. Kovacevic and Mr. Stakic?
5 A. Yes, I saw each of them in their respective offices.
6 Q. Did you learn about the nature of tasks of the Crisis Staff at the
7 time? Were you at all aware of its activities during its existence?
8 A. I know it as a person -- as a lawyer. I know what the job of the
9 Crisis Staff is. They do things that pertain to the area of the
10 organisation of the civilian work, what normally pertains to the scope of
11 activities of the municipality is something that the Crisis Staff does in
12 crisis situations. They act independently, and they report to the
13 assembly on their activities. And their job is by and large to create the
14 civilian tasks which pertain to the area of communal activities, the
15 organisation of education, the supply of the population with food, water.
16 So those are all communal activities that I'm referring to.
17 Health care is also one of their activities, but this is only the
18 primary care at the level of the municipality. So all those activities
19 that normally pertain to the area work of the municipality.
20 Q. You said that the Crisis Staff reports to the Municipal Assembly.
21 How often and when?
22 A. The Crisis Staffs are usually set up in the situation when the
23 Municipal Assembly cannot meet. During the periods of crisis, emergency
24 situations, war, other emergency situations such as natural disasters. So
25 that is when the Crisis Staff is set up and becomes active. And according
1 to the regulations, when the conditions are in place for the Municipal
2 Assembly to be called in its full composition, then the Crisis Staff has
3 to offer to the Municipal Assembly the decisions for their approval. So
4 the decisions that the Crisis Staff makes have to be approved by the
5 Municipal Assembly.
6 Q. Since you were co-opted or appointed as a deputy in the Municipal
7 Assembly of Prijedor, you know that at that time, Dr. Stakic resigned.
8 That was in January 1993. At the same time, Mr. Simo Drljaca, or on -- or
9 about that time, he stopped being the chief of the public security station
10 in Prijedor. Did Mr. Drljaca -- was he removed or was he promoted? Do
11 you know?
12 A. I don't know. I think he went to do something else in Banja
13 Luka. What it was, I don't know.
14 Q. Thank you.
15 We have not yet discussed this as the previous question, either.
16 Did you ever hear that all three political parties in Prijedor made a
17 demand at a session of the Municipal Assembly prior to the referendum on
18 the independence of Bosnia and Herzegovina for the referendum on the
19 independence of Bosnia and Herzegovina not to be held at all or that at
20 the very least, it should be postponed?
21 A. Yes, I was aware of that. That was long before the crisis. That
22 was when the SDA, the SDS, and the HDZ had a successful cooperation.
23 There was a division of power between the three parties in Bosnia and
24 Herzegovina after the multiparty elections. And at this time, it was
25 still possible for all the three ethnic national parties to agree that
1 everyone should stay within the same state and live in that state together
2 side by side.
3 Q. Are you familiar with the name Sead Hrncic?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. What do you associate with that name and the period of crisis in
6 Bosnia and Herzegovina?
7 A. Sead Hrncic was a doctor, a physician, whom I once helped --
8 Q. If you could only tell us his nationality.
9 A. He was a Muslim. I helped him to come to the hospital in Prijedor
10 and start work there from Sanski Most, which was a place I came from, and
11 to get specialisation in surgery. That's what he wanted. During one
12 period, we would travel together from Sanski Most to Prijedor where we
13 worked. And that's when we became reasonably close friends. At this
14 time, we worked for the same company. Sead appealed to me for help in
15 the period between my return from Belgrade - I can't remember the exact
16 date, but it was between the 10th of May and the 20th of May, roughly
17 speaking. So immediately upon my return from Belgrade, he asked me to
18 talk about a problem that he had. I saw him in my office. That was after
19 work. He told me that certain people, Muslims, had invited him the day
20 before and taken him in a car to a high plateau above Prijedor, to a
21 village that we called Hambarine.
22 They took him there to show him the health station there. I knew
23 that there was indeed a health station in Hambarine. He told me that they
24 had shown him a new health station, and that they were putting equipment
25 for surgery in place at that health station, that they were equipping for
1 all intents and purposes a surgical unit which could be used to perform
2 operations. And they asked him, he said, to be prepared to perform
3 operations in that unit if need should arise or, in other words, if
4 conflict broke out as was already expected between the Muslims forces and
5 the army. He told me that when he went to Hambarine, he passed a number
6 of armed guards that Muslims had set up in order to secure the area. He
7 wanted my advice. He asked me what he should do. He was scared, shocked.
8 His wife was a Croat. They had two small children. He asked my advice.
9 He said: "What should I do?"
10 He was scared because he did not have many alternatives. He was
11 scared to remain in Prijedor, because what would become of him unless he
12 complied with the requests that those people had made of him. He was
13 afraid for his family. And yet, on the other hand, he was not prepared to
14 cooperate with those people who were in a sense paramilitary units. I
15 told him: "You don't have much choice. You should go and report this to
16 the relevant bodies." And I was referring first and foremost to military
17 bodies, because we were, after all, talking about armed units, armed
18 groups of people. I said: "Your only alternative is to leave this
19 area." He was not from Sanski Most originally, but from Kljuc. Kljuc is
20 a small town 30 kilometres from Sanski Most. I told him that it would be
21 best for him to leave and go to his -- stay with his family there or go to
22 another place where he would be safe. And then after we had this talk, he
23 gave me another call. He had spoken to his wife, and they agreed -- they
24 had agreed to leave for Croatia, to stay with his wife's relatives. He
25 asked for my help to go to Belgrade because you couldn't go to Croatia at
1 that point. So he wanted to go to Belgrade, to Serbia, through -- and
2 then try to reach Croatia through Hungary, via Hungary, which he
3 eventually did. I secured him a plane ticket from Banja Luka for
4 Belgrade, and he left with his wife and two children.
5 At a later time, he called me, he got in touch with me from
6 somewhere around Vienna, and I think he still lives there.
7 MR. LUKIC: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Mr. Krejic. This
8 concludes our examination-in-chief, and now you will be questioned by my
9 colleague from the Prosecution and probably finally also by the Honourable
10 Chamber. Thank you, again.
11 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you for this concrete and fast line of
12 questions and answers. And I hope we can proceed in the same now when you
13 are facing the questions put to you by the OTP.
14 Ms. Sutherland, please.
15 MS. SUTHERLAND: Thank you, Your Honour.
16 Cross-examined by Ms. Sutherland:
17 Q. Mr. Krejic, you mentioned in your earlier testimony refugees
18 coming from Croatia into Bosnia. Were the refugees coming into all the
19 towns in the Bosanska Krajina including Banja Luka?
20 A. I think so. I know more about the towns where I used to stay, and
21 I'm talking about the four towns which are part of my region: Bosanski
22 Novi, Bosanska Dubica, Sanski Most, and Prijedor. But I think many people
23 did go to Banja Luka, yes, in view of the fact --
24 Q. And they went to Banja Luka town, the city of Banja Luka itself?
25 A. Well, mainly, people would go wherever their relatives were, if
1 any. Usually they would stay with their relatives. So if the relatives
2 were in a village, they would go to a village. If they were in town, they
3 would go to that particular town.
4 MS. SUTHERLAND: Could the witness please be shown Prosecution
5 Exhibit SK49, please.
6 Q. Sir, I'll give you a moment to look at that document, and then I'd
7 like to take you to a portion of it.
8 This is a document entitled "notebook of minutes from the meetings
9 of the coordinating body of the Prijedor SDS municipal board for 1992."
10 And it's dated February 1992. Could I ask you to turn to the page which
11 has a number at the top of it, P0041689.
12 MS. SUTHERLAND: And for Your Honours and the Defence, it's on
13 page 4 of the English translation.
14 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: If I may ask the usher to put this page on the
16 MS. SUTHERLAND:
17 Q. Sir, do you see Simo Drljaca's name in the middle of the page?
18 A. Yes, I do.
19 Q. If we can read that through together --
20 MS. SUTHERLAND: If you bring me the document, usher, I will show
22 Q. If we read through this together, I then have a question for you.
23 So under Simo Drljaca's name, it says, does it not, "who will prepare the
24 administrative organs of the Serbian Municipal Assembly." And then it
25 goes on: "The president of the Prijedor Serbian Municipal Assembly has
1 been entrusted with coming up with a proposal for forming a government and
2 departments of the Prijedor Serbian Municipality by 1400 hours on
3 Thursday, 16th of April, 1992." It then reads: "Miskovic and two
4 councilmen had to come up with nominations for the SDP, SDK, the bank, and
5 the court. Drljaca and Radovan Krejic have been appointed
6 coordinators. [Stakic, Savanovic, and Baltic were entrusted with all
7 preparations for the Serbian Assembly]. And Simo Drljaca and Radovan
8 Krejic were appointed the coordinators."
9 Sir, that paragraph I have just read to you, was that in
10 preparation for the takeover of the municipality?
11 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Two requests for interruption. First, the
12 Defence, and then from the Judges.
13 MR. LUKIC: [In English] Only my learned friend skipped in the
14 first line two letters, IO, meaning Executive Board, or Izvrsni Odbor. So
15 it's not Municipal Assembly; it's Executive Board of Municipal Assembly.
16 MS. SUTHERLAND: I apologise. Thank you, Mr. Lukic, for that.
17 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: And the question from the side of the Judges
18 was: Do you intend to continue with the entire document?
19 MS. SUTHERLAND: No, Your Honour.
20 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Would you then be so kind and to read out also
21 the next lines.
22 MS. SUTHERLAND:
23 Q. Continuing from where I left off, i.e., that Simo Drljaca and
24 yourself had been appointed as coordinators, the document then reads:
25 "Milovan Dragic will provide the premises, and Ranko Nikic will provide
1 security for the premises."
2 The document then reads: "Stakic" and under his name, "the
3 information commission should make a statement regarding information about
4 the occurrences."
5 Sir, my question is, that paragraph that I have just read to you,
6 is that in relation to preparations for the takeover of the municipality?
7 A. This is completely new on me. It's the first time I see it. I
8 was not aware that I was holding a position of any kind of coordinator,
9 believe me. This may be just a proposal that was made, but I was
10 certainly never informed of this.
11 Q. Even though you're seeing the document today for the first time,
12 do you have an opinion as to whether this was in preparation for the
13 takeover of the Serbian municipality -- of the Prijedor Municipality?
14 A. Well, I can consider this now, but I was really not informed about
16 Q. That's why I'm asking you to consider it now. Reading that
17 paragraph, "the president of the Prijedor Serbian assembly Executive Board
18 has been entrusted with coming up with a proposal for forming a government
19 and departments of the Prijedor Serbian Municipality." And then Simo
20 Drljaca and yourself were appointed as coordinators. And Stakic,
21 Savanovic, and Baltic, were entrusted with all the preparations for the
22 Serbian Assembly.
23 What is your opinion on that paragraph?
24 A. It's difficult for me to say anything by just looking at a single
25 page without knowing what this was really about and why these things were
12 Blank pages inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts. Pages 10577 to 10586.
1 being considered. I was never at any point in time informed of being
2 appointed a coordinator of anything. I was in Belgrade in those days
3 officially -- on official business.
4 Q. The date of this meeting was the 13th of April, 1992.
5 A. I never attended a meeting like this.
6 Q. You said that you went to Belgrade on the eve of the 30th of May
7 [sic], 1992 --
8 A. Yes, yes, on the eve of the 1st of May or thereabouts.
9 Q. I think you said you returned around the 8th of May.
10 A. Around the 8th.
11 Q. How many days were you absent from work?
12 A. Between the 1st and the 8th, except that we had three days off at
13 that time. It was an official holiday.
14 Q. I want to move now to another topic. We can -- I have finished
15 with the document that you have in front of you.
16 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May I ask the usher to present the document both
17 in English and B/C/S to the Judges, please. Thank you.
18 You may continue.
19 MS. SUTHERLAND:
20 Q. Mr. Krejic, you mentioned a gentleman Sead Cikota in your
21 testimony earlier today. Did you sign his dismissal notice dated the 1st
22 of June, 1992?
23 A. If it was part of all the dismissal notices, well, then, it may
24 have been the case.
25 Q. Approximately how many dismissal notices did you sign?
1 A. I signed the dismissal notices of all those who had been absent
2 from work more than they were then allowed to.
3 Q. Do you know why Sead Cikota had been absent from work?
4 A. I later found out when I heard that he had been taken to an
5 investigation centre.
6 Q. You said in your testimony that he was taken -- he was imprisoned
7 in Omarska briefly, and he was released after a period of time because he
8 was proven innocent. Are you aware that Sead Cikota was detained in
9 Omarska from the 30th of May until the 6th of August, 1992, after the
10 foreign journalists had visited the camp?
11 A. I got to know about his being taken away when his wife told me
12 about it. I knew that he was over there. I didn't know when he would be
13 released or when he was released, but I found out from a friend. I've
14 mentioned that he was in Trnopolje, and that's when we went over to
15 Trnopolje to visit him.
16 Q. So your visit to the Trnopolje camp was after the 6th of August,
18 A. When I received word that he was there, I can't remember the
19 dates, that's when we went to see him there.
20 Q. You said that his wife told you that he was -- had been put on a
21 bus and taken to Omarska. Do you know what happened --
22 A. No, no, she didn't say how. She just told me that she was in
23 Omarska. She didn't say how she got there, by bus or in a different way.
24 She just told me that she was in Omarska.
25 Q. I'm sorry. I think it's my fault. Sead Cikota's wife told you
1 that he was in the camp, and that's when you went to speak to Simo Drljaca
2 about trying to get him out of the camp.
3 A. No, she said that he was in prison.
4 Q. Do you know what happened to his wife, Zlata Cikota?
5 A. Now, I do. But then, I didn't know.
6 Q. That she was arrested on the 23rd of June at their home and taken
7 to the SUP, and then taken from there to the Omarska camp where she was
8 detained for 42 days?
9 A. Yes. I heard this from Sead when he came later.
10 Q. Do you know why she was arrested?
11 A. No.
12 MS. SUTHERLAND: Could I have a moment, Your Honour.
13 [Prosecution counsel confer]
14 MS. SUTHERLAND:
15 Q. Did you know that Zlata Cikota was chairperson of the referendum
16 election committee for the independent Bosnia?
17 A. No, I didn't know. I knew that she was a member of the SDA. Her
18 husband told me.
19 Q. Are you aware of any crimes committed by either Sead Cikota or his
20 wife Zlata?
21 A. No.
22 MS. SUTHERLAND: I have no further questions, Your Honour.
23 Questioned by the Court:
24 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Just to proceed with this line of questions
25 related to Mr. Sead Cikota. Did I understand it correctly that you said
1 that the fact that a person was detained, in this case, in Omarska, for a
2 certain period of time, and therefore not reporting to work, is a reason
3 for dismissal?
4 A. All institutions in Prijedor, and all companies, were informed
5 that all those who were supposed to respond to the mobilisation callup but
6 failed to do so and failed to appear, to show up for work on that
7 particular day should be dismissed. And we followed this instruction. So
8 we were only trying to find out on the basis of records who was missing.
9 We didn't try to find out the reasons. And all those who had no
10 justification for having been absent for five days were automatically
12 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: But when you learned from Mr. Cikota's wife that
13 he was detained in Omarska, did you rethink your decision of dismissal of
14 Mr. Cikota? Was it when you knew about the reasons why he didn't show up
15 at work --
16 A. Yes, yes.
17 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: This was reason enough to dismiss, and to let
18 him be dismissed.
19 A. I did rethink the whole thing then. But as he was already at the
20 investigation centre, and that he was being investigated, and the police
21 had promised me that the investigation would be sped up in order to find
22 out the truth as quickly as possible, I waited for notification by the
23 police to see whether any criminal proceedings would be started against
24 him or whether he would be released. As he was finally released, and he
25 came to Prijedor, he also came to see me. And I told him that he could
1 get back to work. But even when we met in Trnopolje, he told me that his
2 intention was to leave the country together with his family. So he did
3 have a possibility to continue working since it was proven that he was
5 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Can you then please tell us when it was that you
6 visited Mr. Cikota in the Trnopolje centre? Was he there alone, or
7 together with his wife?
8 A. I visited him, I think it was a day or two days later after he
9 came to Trnopolje from Omarska. After I found out from my friends that he
10 was in Trnopolje, we drove over to see him, and I believed that we might
11 be able to bring him back home because Trnopolje was a collection centre
12 from which you could leave and go home. I found him surrounded by several
13 other people from Prijedor. It was some sort of a makeshift tent. People
14 used blankets to put up these tents. It was summer. It was quite hot,
15 and they were sitting outside this makeshift tent. They had built a fire,
16 and they were eating something. They were grilling some meat when we
17 came. They even had drinks, and they offered us drinks. His wife was not
18 with him.
19 I think -- I'm not sure, but I think that he didn't at that point
20 know where his wife was. I certainly didn't know. We talked, and I
21 offered him a lift back to Prijedor. And then he told me that there were
22 a number of formalities, unfinished formalities with the administration
23 there, with the people keeping the records in the camp. And this was in
24 the afternoon. It was about 5.00, 4.00 or 5.00 in the afternoon when we
25 were there. So he had to stay for another day so that during regular
1 working hours, he could get his papers straight. He had applied before
2 for permission to leave the country. And he said he would stay another
3 day to get the paperwork done, and as soon as that was over and done with,
4 he would call me. That's what he said.
5 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: You told us that you visited Simo Drljaca in
6 order to intervene in the interest of Sead Cikota. Where did you meet
7 Simo Drljaca?
8 A. In his office.
9 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: And his office was located where at that time?
10 A. In the secretariat for the interior, in the same place where the
11 office of the chief of the public security station still is.
12 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Did you have from this discussion the impression
13 that Simo Drljaca had, in fact, the possibility to intervene whether or
14 not a person was detained in Omarska?
15 A. I had the impression that he could intervene, although he
16 explained to me that his interference was not welcome, that his
17 involvement was not welcome, because there are investigative bodies whose
18 duties is to verify the facts, and when the facts are verified and known,
19 then, he would be able to do what I asked him to do, to help and speed up
20 the process of releasing Sead Cikota in case it was proven that he wasn't
21 involved in any criminal activities.
22 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Did you also try to contact other persons in
23 Prijedor in order to end this detention or deprivation of liberty of
24 Mr. Cikota?
25 A. I talked to Dr. Stakic about that as well. As I knew him and
1 Dr. Kovacevic as doctors, I talked to Dr. Stakic, and he referred me to
2 the police and the military [as interpreted]. They told me to go there
3 because it is there that I would be able to possibly achieve what I wanted
4 to achieve.
5 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: So if I understand you correctly, the order was
6 you went first to Dr. Stakic, and he then asked you to go to Simo
7 Drljaca. Correct?
8 A. First I went to Dr. Kovacevic. I knew him better because we had
9 worked together for a longer time. I didn't know Dr. Stakic as well as I
10 knew Dr. Kovacevic. But I went to see them more because of the fact that
11 I knew them as physicians. I knew that their authority was not as broad
12 in scope as it could be. But they could tell me where to go. That was
13 the order.
14 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May I also ask, where did you visit
15 Mr. Kovacevic and Dr. Stakic, in which building?
16 A. In the building of the municipality where their offices were.
17 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: And this was following your testimony after the
18 8th of May. Correct?
19 A. I didn't quite understand you. After the 8th?
20 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Of May, when you returned to Prijedor, as you
21 told us previously.
22 A. Yes.
23 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Did Dr. Kovacevic and Dr. Stakic wear at that
24 time uniforms?
25 A. I don't think so. Dr. Kovacevic wore a pair of blue jeans.
1 Actually, I didn't go to Dr. Stakic's office. I went to Dr. Kovacevic's
2 office. And Dr. Kovacevic wore a pair of blue jeans. That's what I
3 remember because he didn't wear blue jeans very often. No, I didn't see
4 them wearing uniforms at that time.
5 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: You said you didn't go to Dr. Stakic's office.
6 Where did you meet him?
7 A. I believe that the two of us went to Dr. Kovacevic's office.
8 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: This would mean -- sorry, I'm a little bit
9 confused today. But this would once again mean that first you contacted
10 Dr. Stakic, and then, as you said, "the two of us went to Dr. Kovacevic's
11 office." Correct?
12 MR. LUKIC: Excuse me, Your Honour. Wrong translation. Wrong
13 translation. The witness didn't say "we went," but "we were" there.
14 A. I'll explain. It's not a problem. I went to see Dr. Kovacevic,
15 because I knew him much better. And it was early in the morning.
16 Dr. Kovacevic and Dr. Stakic were together in the office, in
17 Dr. Kovacevic's office, and they were having their morning coffee. I had
18 a cup of coffee with them. I made -- I asked what I wanted to know. We
19 talked about the situation in the health-care system. And then I went to
20 Simo Drljaca, not on the same day. I could not arrange for an appointment
21 on the same day. I had to make an appointment for the following day.
22 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: So why did you believe that Dr. Kovacevic could
23 have any influence on the detention of Mr. Cikota? In which capacity did
24 you visit Dr. Kovacevic, and then meeting at the same time Dr. Stakic
1 A. I was very close with Dr. Kovacevic, as we had worked in the same
2 institution for a number of years. And I would visit him in his office
3 from time to time, mostly to talk to him about the situation in the
4 health-care system. And since I didn't have any information on what was
5 going on with the police, with the army, and the investigation centre or
6 prison as they called it, then I used that opportunity to ask him. He
7 also knew Cikota, and I thought that maybe with his help, I would have
8 more influence on the person who could actually help Cikota to get home.
9 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Who were the most influential people and persons
10 in -- at that time in Prijedor Municipality?
11 A. Are you referring to the political influence?
12 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Yes.
13 A. I believe that the biggest political influence was exerted by
14 Mr. Srdjo Srdic immediately prior to the war, because he was a deputy and
15 president of the SDS. So I believe that his was the strongest political
17 Dr. Kovacevic had the authority, but not so much the political
18 authority. He was an influential person by the virtue of his
19 personality. He was a popular person and a doctor who was held in high
20 esteem. And I believe that Dr. Kovacevic had the strongest personal
21 influence as a doctor. And Mr. Srdjo Srdic had the biggest political
22 influence as a politician. I'm talking about the Serbian people.
23 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: And what about the influence of Dr. Stakic --
24 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
25 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: What about the political influence of
1 Dr. Stakic?
2 A. I have already said that he didn't have a huge political influence
3 because he was very young at the time. He was rather unknown in town. He
4 had just completed his university education, and he worked in an
5 outpatient surgery was not located in town. So very few people knew him
6 at the time. In our practice, people who were in executive positions have
7 a lot more influence than those who preside over the assembly because the
8 assembly is a collective body of power which makes decision on general
9 issues, passes regulations, so it doesn't have the executive power. So
10 that's why it is not so much in the spotlight.
11 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: But wasn't it, when you make this assessment, a
12 surprise for you that first he was elected vice-president and later became
14 A. No, I wasn't surprised. I think it was sheer inertia. As a Serb,
15 he was the only person in any office in the assembly, and he inherited, so
16 to say, the position of the president. Dr. Kovacevic was in the highest
17 executive office, while Muhamed was still presiding over the assembly.
18 And Dr. Stakic was not so much in the spotlight.
19 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Did you have good contacts with Mr. Cehajic?
20 A. Until the conflict that I spoke about, the misunderstanding that
21 we had, I had excellent contacts with Mr. Cehajic.
22 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Do you know about the fate of Mr. Cehajic?
23 A. Now I do. I was with his family. We are neighbours. We live in
24 the same town.
25 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: And what did you learn and what did you learn
1 about the reasons, and what is your own assessment of this?
2 A. I did not hear any details. The family didn't give me too many
3 details. They told me that he had a tragic end during the investigation
4 procedure when he was incarcerated. He didn't return. They are not aware
5 of any details of his death. They only told me that he met his end during
6 the investigation. And the reasons: The reasons are the same that led up
7 to this war. The causes of the war are the same causes that resulted in
8 the suffering of people.
9 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Did you ever intervene in the interest of other
10 persons you knew at that time, for example, in the interest of
11 Mr. Cehajic?
12 A. I didn't. When Mr. Cehajic was arrested, I spoke to his wife who
13 was my colleague at work. She is a doctor. And she was the assistant CEO
14 at the hospital. We worked together for a number of years. And she came
15 to my place to tell me what was going on. And in that conversation, we
16 concluded -- she even told me that it would be -- that it was safer for
17 Mr. Cehajic to be in the prison. Maybe not in the prison, but that he was
18 sort of put away because there was a danger for him. He was a prominent
19 leader of the SDA belonging to the Muslim body of the population. There
20 was a danger that the entire family would suffer at the hand of people who
21 instigated some incidents. And Mrs. Cehajic concluded that maybe it was
22 the best for the entire situation because the possible guilt or innocence
23 of her husband would be proven. We still thought that the situation would
24 not end up in any serious conflicts, and that the whole situation would be
25 terminated in a professional way by learning the real truth about all
1 these people.
2 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: You are speaking about guilt or innocence. What
3 was the alleged crime Mr. Cehajic had committed that gave reason to detain
4 him from liberty and incarcerate him in Omarska?
5 A. There were some indications that within the Muslim population,
6 forces were being prepared. That's why I gave you the example of
7 Dr. Hrncic, that paramilitary formations were being established in some
8 parts of Prijedor Municipality, and even broader, in the general area of
9 Prijedor. There were such cases in other places as well, in my town,
10 Sanski Most, and in its vicinity. Paramilitary units had already been
11 formed. Muslims were being armed, and it was already a public secret.
12 And there were some indications that some prominent high-ranking officials
13 who worked in Prijedor Municipality had participated in the illegal arming
14 of parts of the Muslim people and the establishment of paramilitary
15 formations which eventually might cause some armed conflicts. There were
16 later on some incidents, skirmishes, exchanges of fire. And I believe
17 that that was the reason for instigating investigations, in order to
18 establish who among the Muslim officials participated in the formation of
19 these paramilitary units.
20 To my mind, that was the reason. And also, when I exchanged views
21 with Muslims who were outside of the reach of these investigations, we
22 believed that that was the reason, and that a professional investigation
23 would eventually show who were the ones who had to be investigated and who
24 were the ones who were innocent of that allegation and that the latter
25 ones would then be liberated.
1 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Mr. Radovan Krejic, until now, I really could
2 follow your decent testimony. But here, I'm afraid I can't follow you.
3 You knew Mr. Cehajic as the president at that time, and Dr. Stakic was
4 deputy. And you knew that the follower of Mr. Cehajic was Dr. Stakic.
5 Did you really believe that this honest person, as you yourself
6 characterised him, would be part of these activities as you told us of
7 Muslim people and the establishment of paramilitary formations? Did you
8 really believe this?
9 A. I have told you when the Defence counsel asked me that I worked
10 one floor above the headquarters of the SDA. Straight below me was
11 Mr. Mirza Mujadzic's office, and we had daily political activities. And I
12 found myself in the situation to see a number of Muslim activists in that
13 party who were armed already at the time when nobody could foresee that
14 the things that would later on happen would really happen. Mirza Mujadzic
15 also came to work carrying arms. His escorts as well. Mr. Muhamed
16 Cehajic came to these premises almost on a daily basis. After Sead Hrncic
17 told me what he told me, and I trusted him, I could assume that there was
18 hardly anybody who was not involved. In other words, there's a
19 possibility that everybody was involved in the activities that led up to
20 the war. And since the situation escalated very rapidly, I was inclined
21 to believe that there were good enough reasons to establish the
22 responsibility of every single person; at the same time, I believe that
23 those who were innocent would be set free, and that they wouldn't have any
24 harm becoming to them.
25 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Did you ever discuss the fate of Mr. Cehajic
1 together with Dr. Stakic who had apparently a close connection to and with
2 Mr. Cehajic?
3 A. No, I didn't have an opportunity to discuss that with him. It was
4 the time when you couldn't really talk about the destiny of these people.
5 We all believed that these people would return very quickly. All I know
6 about the destiny of people who suffered in one way or another I learned
7 after the war when Muslims started returning to Prijedor and Sanski Most,
8 when I met up with them again. They talked to me openly because I had
9 then - I still have - a lot of Muslim friends. So I actually learned from
10 them all those things that are now known about the events that had taken
11 place in those investigation centres.
12 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Two short additional questions: Did you ever
13 see Madam Plavsic in Prijedor, or did you participate in a meeting
14 together with her, maybe in October 1992?
15 A. No. The only SDS official I saw is Mr. Krajisnik. He attended a
16 session which I attended as well. I believe that he was invited, or maybe
17 he was there just by accident, when we discussed the conflict between
18 Dr. Stakic and the others who asked for his resignation. And I believe
19 that Mr. Krajisnik at that time attended a session of the assembly. I
20 never saw Mrs. Plavsic.
21 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: You gave us deep insight in that what happened
22 in Prijedor today. What is your assessment? Was the situation as it
23 developed later planned and elaborated on the level of Prijedor, or did
24 the politically responsible persons in Prijedor rely on orders given from
25 a higher level, whatever this level may be?
1 A. I can just tell you what I think, because I'm not aware of all the
2 facts. My opinion is -- has changed or has developed. At the beginning,
3 I was inclined to believe that whatever was happening was organised and
4 masterminded from a centre, because similar things were happening in many
5 municipalities. I thought that this was following a scenario. But as the
6 war went on, it appeared that people acted the same or in a similar way in
7 the same situation, in a similar situation. It was more of a chaos than
8 an organised situation. So when I look back on that situation, I think
9 that the situation that all of us faced dictated the development of
10 events. That is my impression.
11 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the Presiding Judge.
12 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Did you take other opportunities to visit
13 Dr. Stakic in the period between the 8th of May and the end of September
15 A. In his office, you mean?
16 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Both in his office, in his apartment, or in
17 Omarska, wheresoever.
18 A. We did see each other -- I don't know how many times, but usually
19 in my office. You know, Dr. Stakic would sometimes surprise me by
20 dropping by to my office. Dr. Kovacevic used to come and see me in my
21 office very frequently. They would sometimes drop by for a medical issue,
22 over a medical issue, if there was a patient being treated they wanted to
23 have a look at the medical records. So it was more in their professional
24 capacity as doctors, rather than as politicians. So we would usually see
25 each other in my office, but always in relation to some medical problems.
1 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Did Dr. Stakic ever express that he had
2 difficulties with his job as you in the beginning mentioned that from your
3 point of view, you would have appreciated if he would have stayed in the
4 health area? Did you ever discuss this -- did Dr. Stakic ever complain
5 about orders he received or the lack of responsibility or the lack of
6 influence or complaining about the development he saw in Prijedor?
7 A. In all my conversations with Dr. Stakic, throughout that period, I
8 got the impression that he was dissatisfied with the way the army treated
9 him. I'm not sure only him, but he wasn't satisfied with the way the army
10 related to the entire organisation of Prijedor Municipality. He said that
11 the army was taken up and using up far too much of the human resources,
12 and that very few people stayed behind to organise the economy. Many
13 people from our own services and institutions, and I'm talking about
14 medical services and medical institutions, and most of the people working
15 there were women, but many people were in the service of the military
16 medical corps and medical units. He and Dr. Kovacevic often told me there
17 was no way for them to make sure that the economy in the town worked
18 because too many people had been taken somewhere else and on military
20 So in those conversations, my impression was that he was unhappy
21 with the situation, and that was precisely what led me to advise him to
22 leave politics behind and to return to his job as a doctor, especially in
23 view of his young age. I said: "You're so young. There will still be
24 plenty of time for you to go back to politics."
25 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Did you have the impression that Dr. Stakic was
1 in agreement with the development in Prijedor, especially those
2 developments leading to the setting up of camps like Omarska and Keraterm?
3 A. I don't think he was in agreement. I think as a human being, what
4 really bothered him the most is that there was a camp located exactly in
5 the area from which he came.
6 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Did you discuss with him the question whether or
7 not in his political function he would have influence to overcome this
8 deplorable situation and to take care that as soon as possible, these
9 camps would no longer exist?
10 A. I'm not sure what influence he could exert really. He was not in
11 a position to exert any influence, I think, for the job being done in the
12 investigation centres to be done as quickly as possible. But I think he
13 would have been in favour of that, and he would have favoured going back
14 to life as normal as quickly as possible, especially in view of the
15 economic situation in Prijedor. Those were difficult times. It was very
16 difficult to supply the population with everything they needed.
17 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: But what about the economic situation in
18 comparison to the -- to that what I think is now undisputed, killing of
19 thousands of people on the territory of the Municipality of Prijedor?
20 A. If I understand correctly, you mean the possibility of using
21 manpower for the economic activities that were underway in the
22 investigation centres?
23 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: No. Balancing the problems. You mentioned the
24 problem, no doubt, that there were enormous economic problems in the
25 municipality of Prijedor, but especially for persons having sworn an oath
1 as doctors to take care of human beings, that on the territory of the
2 Municipality of Prijedor, he was - Dr. Stakic - was the president of the
3 Municipal Assembly, that on this territory where he had some - I emphasise
4 "some" - political responsibility, that there happened these what we now
5 call crimes.
6 A. I don't think I understood your question. Was this a question or
7 a comment?
8 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: The question is what was more in the centre of
9 your discussions, the economic difficulties or the fact that there were
10 these Detention Centres, these camps in the municipality of Prijedor, and
11 allegedly there were committed as it is alleged now more than thousands of
12 killings of innocent persons? What was more in the centre of your
13 discussions with Dr. Stakic, the economic situation or this problem to the
14 centre of human life?
15 A. When I spoke with Dr. Stakic, and particularly with Dr. Kovacevic,
16 I discussed the situation in our health system. You know, whenever I had
17 an opportunity to meet up with them, I would use the opportunity because
18 they were very busy during that period in their jobs. So I couldn't see
19 them that often. So every time I could, I used the opportunity to appeal
20 to them for assistance. I'm talking about financial assistance and
21 assistance in terms of equipment because a lot of humanitarian aid was
22 coming in. So I insisted that they use their influence with the
23 humanitarian organisations to give as much aid as possible to the health
24 organisations. So of course, I also tried to use our contact to get the
25 material and equipment used to treat people medically, in the hospital in
1 Prijedor as well as outside of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
2 And then there were other issues concerning the local economy,
3 which was only a consequence of the economic situation. Whenever they
4 explained that they were not really in a position to do much to help the
5 health institutions, they would speak about the economy, about the local
6 economy. I'm not into economics myself, but that's why we talked about
7 it, the economy, because the state of the local economy was the reason why
8 we couldn't get more money and more aid for the health organisation. And
9 we didn't discuss anything else, especially not the investigation centres,
10 because we only knew precious little about it at that point. Most of what
11 I learned about the investigation centres, I learned only after the war
12 from Muslims.
13 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I know it's time for the break, but really only
14 a short answer. Did you ever meet Dr. Stakic wearing a uniform?
15 A. I can't remember right now. I cannot completely rule out the
16 possibility that I did.
17 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Was there a certain period of time --
18 A. I know that he wore a hat during the war. So I really can't
20 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Was there a certain period of time where more or
21 less all or the majority of the civil staff wore uniforms?
22 A. Yes, yes, indeed. Once - I think it was sent by the secretariat
23 for National Defence, I got information that we were all supposed to wear
24 uniforms, and they meant the directors and the heads of organisations.
25 And I bought a uniform from a certain company which I kept in my
1 cupboard. The first day I wore a uniform myself, but later on when I saw
2 no one was asking questions why I wasn't wearing a uniform, I just left it
3 in my cupboard and that's where it stayed for the whole duration of the
4 war. I think the secretariat for National Defence did send us a note,
5 because there was a work obligation that we were supposed to wear a
6 uniform at work.
7 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Do you have an estimate when -- at what point in
8 time this was? Apparently, it must have been after the 8th of May. Was
9 it close to the 20th of May?
10 A. Excuse me? That was much later. I think it may have even been as
11 late as 1993 when the serious mobilisation began and the war was getting
12 serious. But it was not back then, that's for sure.
13 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: It's now time to have the break. But before the
14 break, I want to ask, please be prepared after the break, when we have
15 finalised the testimony, we have to discuss the questions for next Monday
16 and some related issues.
17 The trial stays adjourned until 5.35.
18 --- Recess taken at 5.15 p.m.
19 --- On resuming at 5.42 p.m.
20 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Please be seated.
21 As regards now the first question by the Prosecution, on Tuesday,
22 I think we have really to act spontaneously, and nobody can now predict
23 how long the witness will take us that day. And I think we have to stick
24 to the schedule as foreseen, and there are three strong representatives of
25 the Prosecution, therefore we are not afraid at all that we can continue.
1 And at this point in time, in fact, we do not know what really will be
2 heard that Wednesday. So it would be premature to decide on this today.
3 And sometimes we have to stick to the schedule. It has to be a reliable
4 schedule; also the Judges have some other commitments, office commitments
5 and office duties. And therefore, I apologise, but it's not possible to
6 rearrange the schedule.
7 Thank you for coming again, Mr. Krejic.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] You're welcome.
9 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Judge Vassylenko has some questions to you.
10 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: Mr. Krejic, can I ask you to explain why
11 Dr. Stakic, a young, unknown doctor, as you said, was elected as
12 vice-president and then president of the Municipal Assembly and then
13 appointed as the president of the Crisis Staff while such political
14 figures as Srdjo Srdic, Simo Miskovic, Milan Kovacevic were ignored, let
15 us say?
16 A. The only thing I can say is my own opinion. It's really difficult
17 to know for sure. But I assume that the more experienced ones used a
18 younger person to put him in a situation where he was not so much at
19 ease. Sometimes, you know, it's due to the circumstances that you have a
20 situation in which someone ends up where they least expect themselves to
21 end up. In Serbia these days, we have a president now, a lady president,
22 who had only been in politics prior to that for a year.
23 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: You testified today that radical part of the
24 SDS leadership decided to remove Dr. Stakic from his position in the
25 autumn of 1992. Can you specify, what was -- what were the differences
1 between Dr. Stakic's position, I mean, attitude and stance, and more
2 radical members of SDS leadership?
3 A. My impression was that the radical group, the people we keep
4 referring to as the radical wing inside the SDS, was dissatisfied by the
5 fact that Mr. Stakic, as the president of the Crisis Staff and the
6 president of the Municipal Assembly, was not enough of a hardliner. They
7 thought he should show more determination, wield his power more, so that
8 he could put up the various forces that were, so to speak, not under the
9 control of the administration, armed forces, including also police
11 I know that once when I attended a meeting of the Municipal
12 Assembly, as what I refer to as co-opted member, there was a request to
13 call the leaders of the armed forces to explain before the assembly what
14 they were asking themselves about, what people in the town were asking
15 themselves. So those deputies were requested to somehow to put up a stand
16 to the military authorities. I suppose Dr. Stakic failed to do so. He
17 was not successful. I'm not sure why, or perhaps he didn't even try.
18 Maybe he thought that was the outside of the scope of the civilian
19 authorities. Now, why they demanded that he should do it, I suppose only
20 they really know. But that was the impression you got when you sat there
21 and listened to their discussion at the assembly session. I think even a
22 conclusion was reached for the commanders to be called before the assembly
23 and to have them explain why they were mobilising so many people and why
24 they were mobilising so many people from Prijedor town itself, and that
25 that should be stopped because they were taking and using up too many
1 people for the armed forces. I think that was probably the reason they
2 thought that Dr. Stakic was not aggressive enough, not wielding his power
3 enough. And they thought that by continuing to work the way he was
4 working, he would not have been able to increase the power of the civilian
5 authorities in the town of Prijedor. And their position was, I suppose,
6 that he should have worked in that direction.
7 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: So Dr. Stakic was in position to influence
8 military and police?
9 A. I don't know, but I suppose that he was not in a position to
10 influence them just for the very fact that he did not influence them. I
11 don't think he had influence. I'm only saying that the radical group
12 believed that there should be more influence, and that he was incapable of
13 exerting the influence or that perhaps he was not willing to exert such
15 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: You said you advised Dr. Stakic to quit
16 politics and go back working as a doctor. What was the reaction of
17 Dr. Stakic on your advice?
18 A. I think those were exactly the days when he resigned. It was
19 toward the end of 1992 when I went to the assembly a couple of times, and
20 I had opportunity to talk to him in my office. I'm not sure how much I
21 influenced his decision, but I think very soon after that, he retired from
22 politics. It was in those days.
23 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: And the last question: How and when you became
24 aware that Dr. Stakic was a member of the national or people's radical
25 party established by Veljko Guberina?
1 A. I learned this at the time when there was the debate on the
2 removal of Dr. Stakic from his position as the president of the Municipal
3 Assembly. The radical group used as one its arguments the fact that
4 Dr. Stakic was not a member of the SDS. They gave this as their reason,
5 as the reason for their attempt to have the president of the Municipal
6 Assembly removed. That was the first time I heard about that. I wasn't
7 involved in the foundation and establishment of the people's radical
8 party, but that was the first time I heard that Dr. Stakic was actually
9 not a member of the SDS.
10 Later on, when I got to know him better and he became the head of
11 the health centre, so we talked more often, it was then that I learned
12 about the whole situation.
13 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: Do you have any idea about the platform of the
14 people's radical party, Guberina people's radical party?
15 A. No, I'm afraid I don't. But I can assume what it was, because
16 I've seen several political platforms from the time before the war, and
17 they were all identical. They all had as one of the principal aims the
18 taking of power, and the idealogical differences between these different
19 platforms were insignificant. I looked at the SDS, the SDA, and the HDZ
20 political platforms, and let me tell you, I would put my signature under
21 any of though platforms, even now, even today, but unfortunately it turned
22 out later that no one really adhered to those platforms. Those platforms
23 were mere declarations of intentions, but what they really wanted to do
24 was grab power, all of them.
25 JUDGE VASSYLENKO: Thank you. I have no more questions.
1 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you.
2 Judge Argibay, please.
3 JUDGE ARGIBAY: Yes, thank you.
4 I think you were telling us that when your colleague or the person
5 who was working with you was taken to Omarska to be interrogated, and then
6 you went to see Mr. Drljaca to ask and try to help him, that you were sort
7 of expecting a trial or a procedure just to know if a person was guilty or
8 innocent, I suppose, because of your legal training. And do you know of
9 any procedure going on in Prijedor at that time against any of the
10 detainees in the Omarska camp? Not only your friend or your colleague,
11 but other people.
12 A. I didn't know at that time what was going on in Omarska. It was
13 very difficult to know for us who were removed from that situation. But I
14 later found out that investigations had been carried out in Omarska, and
15 that some of the documents -- and that the documents were preserved. But
16 as far as I know, criminal reports were never filed against any of the
17 persons who had been investigated, at least not to my knowledge.
18 JUDGE ARGIBAY: Did you know, as a lawyer, who was the president
19 of the court in Prijedor at the time of the takeover?
20 A. Yes, Mr. Seric.
21 JUDGE ARGIBAY: Do you know what happened to this gentleman?
22 A. Again, much later, I found out that he was one of the victims.
23 But I only found out about this later, after the war, when people who had
24 been in Omarska returned from abroad.
25 JUDGE ARGIBAY: Did you know some of the judges in the judiciary
1 of Prijedor at the time of the takeover?
2 A. Yes, I did.
3 JUDGE ARGIBAY: And were they dismissed?
4 A. I really don't know who was dismissed, if any of them. But most
5 of them stayed in their positions, those who were there before the war,
6 during the war, and after the war. And they are still in their
7 positions. They still hold the same posts, but I couldn't give you any of
8 the details.
9 JUDGE ARGIBAY: And do you know of some of the judges and the
10 prosecutors who were taken to Omarska also?
11 A. I only know about Seric. I don't know about any others.
12 JUDGE ARGIBAY: Do you think the people who worked in the
13 judiciary at the time of the takeover and that they stay, and you say that
14 some of them are still holding the same offices, that they tried to start
15 criminal proceedings against one of these persons, detainees, in the
16 Omarska camp?
17 A. No, I don't know about any such proceedings. I really don't
18 know. I'm sorry.
19 JUDGE ARGIBAY: Thank you. I don't have any more questions.
20 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you.
21 It's now for the Defence. Additional questions, please.
22 MR. LUKIC: I have only one question, as a follow-up question of a
23 question of the Honourable Judge Vassylenko.
24 Further examined by Mr. Lukic:
25 Q. [Interpretation] You said that Mr. Stakic had been removed by the
1 radical group within the SDS because he failed to impose his authority on
2 the army and the police. What is your opinion? This new group, were they
3 successful in imposing their authority on the army and the police?
4 A. As I've said, the impression was, by listening to the debates
5 during sessions of the assembly and at meetings of the municipal board
6 once, the group was dissatisfied with Dr. Stakic's lack of determination.
7 They thought that the position he held should have been used to better
8 effect to influence certain activities and change things in favour of the
9 administration. But it turned out later that the situation did not change
10 much after Dr. Stakic's removal. I think the armed forces and the police
11 forces, and the TO forces were a world unto themselves, and the civilian
12 authorities could do nothing to influence their work.
13 MR. LUKIC: Thank you, Mr. Krejic. Thank you, Your Honours.
14 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Prosecution.
15 MS. SUTHERLAND: Just a couple of questions, Your Honour.
16 Further cross-examination by Ms. Sutherland:
17 Q. Mr. Krejic, Judge Argibay asked you questions about the judiciary
18 in Prijedor. Can you tell the Court the names of the Muslim and Croat
19 judges who remained in their positions after the takeover.
20 A. I didn't say anything about their ethnicity. I know that a number
21 of judges have remained. I knew very few judges personally. I knew the
22 president of the court since as in my capacity as director of the health
23 insurance fund, my contacts were with heads of various departments, and he
24 was the one who was in charge of the judiciary administration and he was
25 the one who was familiar with the laws in the area of health insurance. I
1 knew very few judges personally. I wouldn't come across them in the
2 court, if I came to the court. I believe that Muslims left from the
3 court like they did from all the other institutions. I don't know any
4 Muslims who have remained. I knew very few of them anyway. I only knew
5 one lawyer. They are the two lawyers that I knew. They have left
6 Prijedor, but now they have returned.
7 Q. The president of the Municipal Assembly had the power to set the
8 agenda; is that correct?
9 A. The agenda of the session?
10 Q. Yes.
11 A. I don't know how they put their agenda together. I really was not
12 in the position to see how the agenda was established for the Municipal
13 Assembly. I attended only two or three sessions of the assembly, and I
14 had been given the agenda. It was usually the secretary of the assembly
15 who prepared the agenda, and then he would send it to the president of the
16 assembly who would then read it. This was then documented in the minutes,
17 and it was adopted by the assembly. How the agenda was prepared by the
18 secretariat in the assembly, I don't know.
19 Q. On the agenda of the two or three sessions that attended, was
20 there ever discussion about the camps, the cleansing of the Muslim
21 villages or crimes committed against the Muslim or Croat civilians?
22 A. Never.
23 Q. Thank you.
24 MS. SUTHERLAND: I have no further questions, Your Honour.
25 Futher questioned by the Court:
1 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: One final question: From your point of view,
2 who was higher ranking in the Crisis Staff of Prijedor from the persons
3 you knew very well, Simo Drljaca, Mr. Kovacevic, or Dr. Stakic?
4 A. I really don't know what you're referring to. In legal terms, the
5 president, given his position, should be more important. But if you are
6 referring to the real authority that people had, I believe that Simo
7 Drljaca had the highest authority, and that Dr. Kovacevic commanded the
8 most respect in the Crisis Staff. But in legal terms, it was Dr. Stakic
9 who was the president. So that would be their ranking.
10 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: In legal terms, would it have been possible for
11 Dr. Stakic to give orders to one of the other two persons?
12 A. Not to Simo Drljaca. Simo Drljaca was appointed following a
13 different procedure. He was in the MUP, in the then SUP, and the
14 situation there is similar like in the health-insurance fund. There was a
15 vertical hierarchy from the municipality up to the republic. And I
16 believe that the person that Simo Drljaca reported to was in Banja Luka,
17 and Dr. Kovacevic had the executive function. He was in the -- and he
18 presided over the executive body. So there was no subordination between
19 them. Dr. Stakic, as the president of the assembly, should have insisted
20 on the implementation of the decisions passed by the assembly. So the
21 Crisis Staff should have implemented these decisions or returned them for
22 review to the municipality if they thought that there was no legal
23 foundation for the implementation of such decisions.
24 The president of the municipality cannot give orders to the
25 Executive Board. It's an independent body.
1 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Any further questions? I can't see any.
2 Thank you very much for coming, and thank you for your time, and
3 thank you for giving us your testimony with a lot of new insight and that
4 what happened in 1992 in Prijedor. And have a safe and good return to
5 Prijedor. Thank you very much for coming once again. You're excused for
7 May I ask the usher to escort the witness out of the courtroom.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you. I hope I have
9 contributed for you to finding the real truth about the events in
11 [The witness withdrew]
12 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May we now turn to the question of Monday's
13 witnesses. The Defence is prepared, insisting, or whatsoever hearing
14 Mr. Mujadzic?
15 MR. OSTOJIC: Thank you, Your Honour. And we want to thank the
16 Court and the OTP for giving us an opportunity to meet and visit with our
17 client, as we did so this morning. And there were some things that we did
18 discuss that we would like to share with the Court relating to the
19 specific question the Court raised.
20 At this time, although we're somewhat perplexed as to the
21 procedures involved in questioning or opening the questioning for
22 Mr. Murselovic, Mr. Sivac, and Dr. Mujadzic, quite frankly, we're a bit
23 respectfully chagrined that the OTP has an opportunity to open their case,
24 to ask questions, to submit new evidence, and to continue to establish
25 things that they either failed or didn't expect at one point to present.
1 After consulting with the Defence team, including our consultation with
2 Dr. Stakic, we are of the opinion, despite the fact that there were those
3 six late disclosures pursuant to Rule 68, in light of the fact that
4 there seems to be a rush to conclude certain witnesses, that we will not
5 be asking Dr. Mujadzic any further questions, other than that which we've
6 asked during our initial cross-examination. And will not be supplementing
7 our cross-examination of Dr. Mujadzic.
8 We would like, when the time is appropriate, to address two other
9 points with the Court.
10 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: So I take it that on Monday morning, we start
11 immediately with the next witness in line. This would be, if I'm not
12 wrong, 040. The witness had previously testified in the Omarska case.
14 MR. OSTOJIC: That is correct, Your Honour.
15 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you.
16 Then, please, the other issues you wanted to raise.
17 MR. OSTOJIC: Thank you. There was an issue raised by the OTP
18 with respect to Mr. Mayhew who is an OTP witness who testified. There has
19 been some correspondence from the OTP which identifies certain documents
20 that were available to the witness during his testimony and during the
21 cross-examination, as well as part of the redirect. It was revealed that
22 he may, if he had just done a cursory review of his file or his computer
23 that he would have come up with critical information that purportedly he
24 was relying on but didn't give during his testimony. Although, personally
25 I was lectured about corresponding to people and individuals in writing,
1 we, the Defence, were never informed in writing despite the parametres
2 being set by the OTP that Mr. Mayhew would appear and is willing to
3 retestify. It's a separate issue from the Rule 68 disclosures. We do not
4 expect based upon the Court's comments upon reviewing Mr. Mayhew's
5 testimony, based upon the Court's deliberations and judicial hints that
6 were offered to us in connection with Mr. Mayhew's testimony, discussing
7 it with Dr. Stakic, and relying upon the Court's comments during his
8 testimony as well as the comments of the Court during the deliberations
9 and the judicial hints, we likewise will not be seeking to open and
10 supplement our cross-examination of Mr. Mayhew.
11 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: After deliberation, accepted.
12 Next issue, please.
13 MR. OSTOJIC: Thank you, Your Honour. The next issue involves
14 actually the witnesses that were identified to us under what we categorise
15 the Rule 68 statements and disclosures. The Court has invited us, it's my
16 recollection, invited us to seek assistance from the Court as to which
17 witnesses we would like the Court to subpoena or assist in bringing here.
18 We have consulted and believe that with the Court's permission, we can
19 share the name of two of those individuals. But again, taking the most
20 precaution, perhaps I should identify their names in private session, if
21 necessary. But I'll proceed in the manner in which the Court desires.
22 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I think we have already on the transcript in
23 open session discussed these names. So I can't see a reason why we should
24 go into private session for this purpose. So if you could be so kind and
25 to address these names, and then also to specify whether you want us to
1 subpoena these persons or whether you have good reasons that you asked the
2 Court to call these witnesses as Chamber witnesses.
3 MR. OSTOJIC: Thank you, Your Honour. To answer the two-fold
4 question is is it's at the Court's discretion if the Court wishes to
5 subpoena or to grant us a subpoena to come here. We were informed by
6 these witnesses that they will not, because of their understanding, having
7 given statements and interviews with the OTP, will not be cooperating with
8 the Defence. Because, namely, some of them are either suspects or believe
9 that they will be suspects in future or sealed indictments. So they are
10 not cooperating with us, but are cooperating and have cooperated, given
11 that they have provided those interviews, with the OTP.
12 We believe that the issue of the Crisis Staff, the authority
13 within this Crisis Staff is relevant and is quite frankly important for
14 the understanding in order to adjudicate any facts, much less applying the
15 law to this case. Therefore, we would respectfully suggest that the
16 witnesses, should the Court decide to call them, be limited to those
17 witnesses that were members of the Crisis Staff or allegedly members of
18 the Crisis Staff. I'm not sure if the Court has read in complete their
19 statements. And that would include Ranko Travar, Mr. Pavicic, and Slavko
20 Budimir. Of those three -- or, in the alternative, respectfully, the
21 Court, again, with your discretion, we believe at the very least, two of
22 those three may assist us in coming to a just result in this case and
23 having a better understanding of the circumstances and events that
24 unfolded in Prijedor and Bosnia in the spring and summer of 1992.
25 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: May I then ask the Prosecution for comments on
1 this. But please, take already now into account that apparently, it seems
2 to be a waste of time to subpoena these persons in case they don't want to
3 appear as witnesses for the Defence. So it would save time, in fact, that
4 they would appear as Chamber witnesses.
5 One prerequisite, once again, would be the balancing of the
6 interests of the victims against the interests of Defence and the
7 interests of justice of coming to the truth. But what we would need to do
8 in this case is to grant safe conduct and ask the Dutch authorities to
9 grant safe conduct as well. May I ask for your opinion on these issues,
11 MR. KOUMJIAN: Well, Your Honour, we believe they are relevant.
12 They have relevant information. I'm not going to make any comments about
13 their credibility. We'll wait until we hear them. But as far as whether
14 they are subpoenaed by the Defence or the Court, I think the Court can
15 issue a subpoena on behalf of the Defence that the witnesses are required
16 and are compelled to come here, just as you can on behalf of the
17 Prosecution. But we have no preference. Whichever way the Court and the
18 Defence want to handle it, whether they appear as Defence witnesses or
19 Prosecution witnesses, and we have no objection to the safe conduct.
20 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: We'll decide on this as soon as possible.
21 Any other issues in addition to this?
22 MR. OSTOJIC: Not at this time, Your Honour. Thank you.
23 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Then it's for me to inform you that as you know,
24 the Trial Chamber was seized by a motion of the OTP under Rule 66(C), and
25 in balancing the interests mentioned in this Article 66(C) of our Rules of
1 Procedure and Evidence, the Trial Chamber came to the conclusion to grant
2 the request of the OTP. We are convinced that there will be no prejudice
3 for Dr. Stakic or the Defence emanating from this decision.
4 Then let us turn to next weeks' programme. We start, as we just
5 said, with Witness 040. And here is no problem. We had the proffer
6 already in the past. And additionally, the transcript, so therefore, this
7 would enable the Prosecution immediately to start the cross-examination on
8 Monday. Correct?
9 MR. KOUMJIAN: We'll be ready. Yes, Your Honour. We're not ready
10 yet, but we will be ready.
11 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I don't want to mention the name, but we know
12 the name of the witness of Tuesday. I think this will fill in the entire
13 programme of Tuesday hopefully in a way that also follows the interests of
14 the Prosecution and the Defence at the same time. But what about the
15 remaining part of the week? Can we please hear the order of witnesses you
16 want to call then and, as envisaged, that the proffers be provided on
17 Monday morning.
18 MR. OSTOJIC: The order in which we expect to call the witnesses,
19 with the interruption of the witness that's coming on Tuesday, would be as
20 follows: 040, 071, 072, and at the request of the Prosecution to be the
21 last witness for the week would be 058. We do have a request in
22 connection with this last witness, Your Honour, if I may.
23 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Yes, please.
24 MR. OSTOJIC: I see my learned friend was on his feet.
25 As the Court may know, 058, has testified in other cases before
1 the Tribunal. We do not have access to his transcript of proceedings in
2 the Keraterm case, Sikirica, and we would ask that the Court provide us,
3 as well as to the OTP, or have the registry give us a copy of that
4 transcript of that witness. And secondly, to inform the Court with
5 respect to Witness 058, although initially we did not ask for protective
6 measures, upon discussing the issues with him, we have been informed that
7 since his last testimony, or better said, since the last time he testified
8 here at The Hague before the Tribunal, he has experienced some problems in
9 connection with that testimony. So now, we will be seeking protective
10 measures for this witness. We can, if the Court would like, to prepare a
11 written submission and would have that before the Court on Monday. We're
12 just giving the OTP and the Court just a little advance notice in
13 connection with that.
14 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I think this shouldn't be a problem. But may we
15 hear the submission by the OTP, please.
16 MR. KOUMJIAN: Yes, we have no objection to the protective
17 measures. Just in regards to the order, because -- although we did ask
18 for this week to hold off on Witness 58 because our search was not done,
19 it is now complete. So actually, it's -- we're ahead on that than we are
20 on 71 and 72. If there's no difference to the Defence, we would prefer
21 that he precede those two witnesses.
22 MR. OSTOJIC: I hate to start following a practice, but if the OTP
23 would prefer, if they want to set our schedule, that would work with us
24 for the following week. It seems that it never works. When a witness
25 that we call is deliberate in his mannerisms, the complaints are that he's
1 too slow. The next day when we have a witness that seems to be rather
2 quick in his responses, the complaint is that we are bringing witnesses
3 that speak too fast. We will accommodate as we have in the past the OTP,
4 and if it's their pleasure to call Witness 058 on Wednesday, we will do
5 so. If we complete Witness 040 on Monday, we will immediately thereafter
6 call Witness 058 on Monday afternoon.
7 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you for this cooperation. And I think we
8 shouldn't try to find any kind of reason for dispute on this issue. I saw
9 it just as a request, if possible, to hear 058 before 071. And if it's
10 possible for you, I'm grateful.
11 We would then proceed in this order for next week. Maybe for the
12 record, because it was discussed only in the framework of the 65 ter
13 meeting, what about the exhibits, please? First in B/C/S, and then step
14 by step in a translated version.
15 MR. OSTOJIC: Yes, to update the Court and the OTP, when we will
16 introduce exhibits through witnesses, we will endeavour to provide those
17 in B/C/S at least two days to the OTP so they could have their in-house
18 people at least run a cursory review. But it's my understanding that they
19 do have a complete set of our exhibits in the B/C/S version. We're still
20 waiting for the translation department or unit to complete their
21 translation of the documents that we submitted, and we do not have an
22 anticipated time in which they would be complete with that translation or
24 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: If the Defence could do all of us a favour and
25 present those documents immediately, and not wait until all the documents
1 are translated, because also the capacities of this Trial Chamber are
2 limited, and we really want to read what it is tendered by the Defence.
3 And therefore, please, offer it step by step.
4 MR. OSTOJIC: We will do that with pleasure, Your Honour.
5 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you.
6 Then next point is related to the experts. During the 65 ter (i)
7 meeting, and this is for the transcript, it -- we took the decision that
8 with respect to the limited probative value, all the parties are no longer
9 interested in having an expert on machine typewriting comparing the
10 documents we have before us, whether or not they were written or printed
11 by the same machine. So this issue is moot, and we will not expect any
12 longer an expert on this.
13 Finally, it's also for the transcript necessary to discuss the
14 issue of the experts by the Defence. And may I, for the purpose of the
15 transcript, hear what is the expected deadline from your point of view for
16 having these expert statements ready in order to give the Prosecution the
17 necessary and usual 40 days to decide whether or not to cross-examine the
19 MR. OSTOJIC: I'm sorry, did the Court say 40, 4-0, or 14, 1-4.
20 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: As usual.
21 MR. OSTOJIC: Thank you. I just wasn't sure, because the
22 transcript showed something else, and I did think I heard something.
23 Before I give the Court a specific response to the timetable of
24 the experts, I would like to at least respectfully continue to stand on
25 the Defence's objection that we have not been provided with the necessary
1 and adequate number of experts that we previously requested. I'm not
2 asking at this time for the Court to revisit that; I just do not or would
3 not like to engage in a conversation and not reiterate our objection on
5 We strongly believe that the OTP has utilised numerous, in fact,
6 several, at the very least, arguably more than two experts on issues
7 before the Court in connection with this fourth amended indictment. We
8 believe that our requests have been reasonable, consistent, and would be
9 relevant on all those issues. And we understand, although respectfully do
10 not agree, with the Court's decision to limit the Defence to two such
11 experts. Nevertheless, in response to the Court's specific question, our
12 expert, the academic historian, we believe will be prepared to submit his
13 report to the Court and the OTP by February 15th, 2003.
14 Our second expert, which is the military expert, will be prepared
15 to submit his report on or about March 1st, 2003.
16 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: We discussed this issue this morning. And we
17 came to the conclusion, taking into account the remaining days in March,
18 that the absolute deadline for filing such an expert statement would be
19 March 3. Having, then, 14 days for consideration by the Prosecution,
20 there would be adequate time hopefully to call the witness. And I would
21 kindly ask the Defence to make reservations in their calendar for both the
22 historian and the military expert that they are prepared to appear as
23 experts in this Trial Chamber before 21 March. I think it's necessary,
24 experts normally don't have time at all. So therefore, if you could
25 already now try to fix a date, it would be excellent because I think in
1 all likelihood, the Prosecution intends to cross-examine the expert.
2 94 bis, what about 94 bis statements? When can they be provided?
3 Sorry, 92 bis. Yes, 92 bis.
4 MR. OSTOJIC: Thank you, Your Honour. We will submit the proffers
5 for the witnesses -- because the Court asked that question earlier and I
6 failed to respond to it on Monday for the following group of witnesses in
7 the detailed form that we believe we provided with the witness that
8 appeared before the Court this afternoon. If the Court has any
9 suggestions or requests to modify that, we would do so.
10 With respect to the 92 bis statements, we hope to accomplish and
11 conclude that within the next three weeks. Our one investigator is busy
12 not only assisting transportation and other needs for the witnesses that
13 are testifying here, he is overlapping in his duties and assisting in
14 obtaining the final statements and getting them signed and executed by the
15 proper authorities consistent with the Rules as outlined in 92 bis. So we
16 believe, in essence, that within the next three weeks, we will be able to
17 provide the Court with our complete set of 92 bis witnesses.
18 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Any comments on this from the side of the
20 MR. KOUMJIAN: No. We will need some time, of course, to review
21 and see if we have objections, or we will ask for the right to
22 cross-examine those witnesses once we see the statements.
23 And I would suggest also that if the statements are complete in
24 part, but not in whole, it's certainly helpful to us to get any of them so
25 we can begin rather than waiting. There's no necessity from our point of
1 view to wait until every witness's 92 bis statement is complete.
2 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Can you live with this proposal?
3 MR. OSTOJIC: As soon as we receive them, Your Honour, we'll be
4 happy to provide them to the Court and to the OTP.
5 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: One moment, please.
6 [Trial Chamber and senior legal officer confer]
7 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: We also discussed this issue this morning. And
8 we thought it appropriate that as we did it in the case of the
9 Prosecutor's case, that we kindly ask the Defence to prepare, of course as
10 soon as possible and produce as soon as possible, these statements, but no
11 later than March 3. And the same is true for any kind of requests of
12 amendments for additional witnesses or experts. Here also, the Trial
13 Chamber imposes a deadline ending March 3. Until then, we expect motions,
14 be it orally, be it in writing. But as you know, we prefer oral
16 MR. KOUMJIAN: Again to reiterate, if we can get them in part,
17 because if the Defence waited until the 3rd of March to give us 20
18 requests for 92 bis and we wanted to cross-examine all 20 of them, then we
19 are running into big time problems.
20 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Of course, because as it reads everywhere,
21 immediately but no later than the 3rd of March, only that we have already
22 now clear lines and a clear deadline that the Defence knows after this 3rd
23 of March, there will be no new requests accepted as regards new experts or
24 new witnesses. And maybe for unforeseen reasons, there may be a delay
25 related to the one or other 92 bis statement. But the deadline is March
1 3. Hopefully, we get it, of course, earlier. And as the cooperation
2 between the parties was in the past good, I don't know why this should
3 change in future.
4 Anything else on the agenda?
5 MR. OSTOJIC: Yes, we do have one other matter that we raised in
6 the 65 ter conference, that it's my recollection the Court invited us to
7 raise it with the full panel of Judges. But this may require us to go
8 into private session at the request of the OTP, although we would prefer
9 it to be in public session, because it involves one of the witnesses that
10 the Court has ordered to appear sometime in the future, after sentencing.
11 So I'm not sure how to proceed. Do you want me to continue with my
12 request in open session, public session, or -- I need to be cautious
13 because it was a request made by the OTP, that when we discuss this
14 individual it goes into private session.
15 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I think we should try to make no secret of this
16 issue. If possible --
17 MR. KOUMJIAN: I understand we're talking about Mrs. Plavsic, but
18 I believe what I indicated is that some items were provided to the Defence
19 which are still provided on a confidential basis, and if we're discussing
20 the contents of any of those items, at least at this point, it's
22 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Do you want to go into details of the contents?
23 MR. OSTOJIC: Just to reiterate my prior request in connection
24 with the other interviews that were given by Mrs. Plavsic, we would like
25 to reiterate that request. We haven't received those interviews yet. And
1 I know that they are in existence. They have been distributed obviously
2 to various members and team members of the OTP as well as Mrs. Plavsic's
3 Defence team, which included approximately 6 or so people. We think that
4 it's just a matter of spending 15 minutes and photocopying those pages.
5 We haven't received those two interviews. We would like also to reiterate
6 our request, although Ms. Ruth Karper said that we were going to get the
7 B/C/S version hopefully by Monday for Dr. Stakic, we would just like to
8 hold it to that date, give or take a day or two. We know that they are
9 under some pressure as well, but we would like to keep it on a short
11 There is another request that I make in connection with
12 Ms. Plavsic --
13 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Just step by step. I think there should be no
14 problem to provide you with the requested documents. And I think
15 it's -- there's some priority that Dr. Stakic is able to follow this tape
16 in B/C/S. And I would kindly ask you if possible to provide Dr. Stakic on
17 Monday with this tape. And please let us know whether or not Dr. Stakic
18 has the necessary facilities to listen to this tape. And I take it we
19 discussed it already in open court that Dr. Stakic will respect the in
20 part confidentiality of this and not to discuss this with other inmates of
21 the Detention Unit.
22 MR. OSTOJIC: The --
23 MR. KOUMJIAN: If the Defence can wait a few moments after court,
24 it can be provided today.
25 MR. OSTOJIC: It's not a audiotape, it's actually a videotape it's
1 my understanding that will be provided to Dr. Stakic. And he does have
2 the capacity to view the videotape, and if not, we will advise the Court
3 and perhaps with your assistance it can be accommodated or one can be
4 provided to him for that limited purpose to review the videotape of the
5 interviews. Thank you, Your Honour.
6 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Anything else?
7 MR. OSTOJIC: Yes, thank you on this point, but I did have two
8 other points in connection with Mrs. Plavsic. And again, I'm not sure if
9 I should raise it. It doesn't come directly from the interview, but it
10 includes two specific aspects that we requested at the 65 ter conference.
11 One involves the wiretaps and the intercepts of conversations with Biljana
12 Plavsic that she had that are in the possession of the OTP. And the
13 second issue arrives from the Rules of the Tribunal, which is specifically
14 Rule 68 involving Biljana Plavsic. We believe, since Biljana Plavsic is
15 identified as a co-conspirator on each and every one of the counts in the
16 fourth amended indictment against Dr. Stakic, it's not only relevant but
17 it's reasonable that all those documents should be produced given the fact
18 that she is testifying, but in my opinion, should have been produced even
19 during the outset of Dr. Stakic's case.
20 If the allegation is that there was a joint criminal enterprise,
21 as there is, and maintaining that position not to provide the Defence with
22 the 68 -- Rule 68 materials for any or all of the purported
23 co-conspirators of this "joint criminal enterprise," I think prejudices
24 the Defence, and I think we should have been provided that material well
25 in advance of her testimony. Nevertheless, as it has been the practice in
1 an attempt to cure any prejudice, we would be willing to accept for this
2 one time the fact that they can produce to us the Rule 68 disclosures of
3 Biljana Plavsic. But we would like that as soon as possible, since we
4 know it's readily available and in their possession, as well as the wire
5 intercepts. And obviously, we will continue to maintain the
6 confidentiality requests as imposed on us by the OTP.
7 MR. KOUMJIAN: Thank you, Your Honour. As I recall from the 65
8 ter, we discussed this, and my recollection was Your Honour ask the
9 Defence for a written motion. We don't normally request that but in this
10 particular case, especially since really this requires a lot of
11 coordination with another team in the Prosecution that we don't have daily
12 contact with, that would be very helpful to us to get it in written form.
13 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Yes. Indeed, we discussed this that way because
14 there were also in other cases similar motions. And to treat all Defence
15 teams in an equal way, may I kindly ask you a very short motion on this,
17 MR. OSTOJIC: We'll provide the Court with the motion. We just
18 can't promise that it will be very short, because it is a very important
19 issue. But we hope to provide that by mid-week next week, and we will
20 work during the breaks to complete it.
21 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you. This was the first related issue.
22 And the second?
23 MR. OSTOJIC: Well, the two within that one issue, were the
24 wiretaps and Rule 68.
25 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Okay.
1 MR. OSTOJIC: And the related issue to that is if we review the
2 indictment, there are other co-conspirators. There are other defendants
3 that appear. There are other Rule 68 materials that have been provided to
4 other Defence teams before this Tribunal. If there's an insistance on
5 this joint criminal enterprise, we think that that will ultimately be the
6 next step that the OTP would have to share with us. I also would like
7 just for the record because I'm compelled not to allow the comment by the
8 OTP a little earlier, and now I'm transgressing a little bit, with respect
9 to credibility of witnesses. I dare say the Court has not invited us to
10 comment on the credibility of witnesses. If the OTP felt that the six
11 witnesses that they took the statements and interviews from were not
12 credible, they should set forth exactly in writing why they think they are
13 or are not credible. Quite frankly, to sit here in advance, in advance
14 of the Court calling these witnesses, to pass judgement on individuals,
15 when in fact if a cursory review of both Ms. Sutherland's and
16 Mr. Koumjian's interrogation of these witnesses I don't believe that any
17 person with any type of legal education, much less a judge, would find
18 that those interviews were conducted in a fair manner, that those were
19 interviews were conducted with all the documents before the witness. So I
20 take exception to that comment, and that was the point that I would like
21 to raise and think that this Court should make a decision on their
22 credibility and not Mr. Koumjian. And I invite the Court to rule on the
23 questions that were asked of these witnesses; not only were they
24 misleading and speculative, but there were complete errors in connection
25 with the questions asked of those witnesses. And then to have him suggest
1 that they have a lack of credibility -- thank you, Your Honour. I'm not
2 sure if you're waving at me or asking me to stop.
3 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: I think enough is enough. And I don't want to
4 re-emphasise. This is not a jury. Here are sitting three professional
5 Judges, and we know to read, and we know what is our duty. And we can't
6 leave it to one or the other party to decide on the credibility of the one
7 or other witness. To that extent, the Trial Chamber, in fact, has the
8 last word, if not later, the Appeal Chamber.
9 But to be serious, I don't think we should go into details and
10 stating that the one or other statement was taken in an inappropriate
11 way. And we shouldn't go into premature allegations of nondisclosure of
12 68 material. I don't think in the moment, we don't have any indicia for
14 The Prosecution is aware of their ongoing -- of the ongoing duty
15 to comply with Rule 68, and I have no doubt at all that this will be
17 Any other issues?
18 MR. OSTOJIC: Not at this time, Your Honour. Thank you.
19 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Then from the side of the Prosecution?
20 MR. KOUMJIAN: No, Your Honour.
21 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Then may I take the opportunity at the end of
22 this week, what is normally -- forms normally part of a Status Conference,
23 but this would be due now. And normally we do it in the framework of a
24 public hearing.
25 May I ask you, Dr. Stakic, do you have any health problems in the
1 moment, health problems more than all the participants in this Tribunal in
2 the moment have, or do you have any complaints about the condition in the
3 United Nations Detention Unit?
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I am
5 satisfied with your wish for these proceedings to be over as quickly as
6 possible. However, the introduction of work in two shifts, meaning the
7 whole day work, I find it very exhausting because I have to spend here in
8 this courtroom long hours, between 8.00 in the morning, until 5.00 or 6.00
9 in the afternoon. There's no way for me to get a walk outside. All I get
10 to eat is a sandwich. But even more important than that is I have been
11 deprived of the opportunity to meet with my counsels.
12 And therefore, they have been also restricted in their opportunity
13 to meet with the witnesses. I don't want to object to the schedule that
14 has been adopted for next week, but I would kindly ask you to make sure
15 that this does not become a practice because my digestive system is weak,
16 and it's going to be very difficult for me to adapt to that, to spend so
17 much time in closed confinement with no daylight and poor alimentation.
18 Thank you very much for giving me the opportunity to address the
19 Honourable Court. And I heard that you will consider this issue that I
20 have just raised.
21 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you, Dr. Stakic.
22 This concludes today's session. And I want to be on the safe
23 side. We are starting on Monday at 9.00 or at 9.30?
24 THE REGISTRAR: On Monday we sit from 9.00 to 12.00, and from 1.30
25 to 4.30 in courtroom II, Your Honour.
1 JUDGE SCHOMBURG: Thank you for this information. We'll stick to
2 the schedule the next week. The week after that is a usual week, as we
3 proceeded in the past. And we have to, in fact, reconsider the schedule
4 of the then following week.
5 Thank you. I wish a good weekend to everybody, and first of all,
6 good health. The trial stays adjourned until Monday, 9.00.
7 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 6.52 p.m.,
8 to be reconvened on Monday, the 20th day of
9 January, 2003, at 9.00 a.m.