Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 672






6 Friday, 13th October 1995




10 Before:



13 (The Presiding Judge)








21 -v-





Page 673





5 MR. GRANT NIEMANN and Mme TERESA McHENRY appeared on behalf of

6 the Prosecution



9 Friday, 13th October 1995.

10 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Mr. Prosecutor, or

11 madam Prosecutor, you

12 have the floor, please.

13 MISS McHENRY: Your Honour, with respect to the next witness,

14 the witness has indicated she wishes to testify openly.

15 Therefore, I ask that the protective order be lifted -----

16 (Technical difficulties with interpreters' channels)

17 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: : [Original in French] Yes, Miss McHenry,

18 you have the floor.

19 MISS McHENRY: Thank you, your Honour. The next witness, your

20 Honour, has indicated she wishes to testify publicly, so

21 with respect to this witness I ask that the protective

22 order be lifted other than for the witness's address.

23 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: : [Original in French] The Registrar will

24 take note of the

25 lifting of that non-disclosure order with the exception,

Page 674

1 of course, in regard of the witness's address which means

2 that the witness will testify publicly as has been

3 requested. The witness has then been informed of all the

4 rights of protection which the International Criminal

5 Tribunal is able to provide.

6 That having been done, I would suggest you ask the

7 clerk to bring in the witness. You can pass that

8 information on to the witness that has just been given.

9 MISS McHENRY: The Prosecution calls Zehra Smajlovic.


11 THE PRESIDING JUDGE [Original in French]: Madam Smajlovic,

12 first of all, can you hear me all right?

13 THE WITNESS: [Original in Bosnian] No, I cannot hear you.

14 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: : [Original in French] Can you hear now,

15 Mrs. Smajlovic?

16 THE WITNESS: [Original in Bosnian] Yes, I can hear you now

17 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: : [Original in French] Please remain

18 standing just the time to

19 read out the solemn declaration for the Tribunal. If you

20 would kindly read that in your language, please?

21 THE WITNESS: [Original in Bosnian] I solemnly declare that I

22 shall speak the truth,

23 the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

24 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: : [Original in French] Thank you very

25 much. Please be seated.

Page 675

1 THE WITNESS: [Original in Bosnian] A bit louder, please.

2 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: : [Original in French] Can you hear, Mrs.

3 Smajlovic?

4 Mrs. Smajlovic, the International Criminal Tribunal which

5 is prosecuting the perpetrators of crimes against humanity

6 is here to hear your testimony which the Prosecutor's

7 office thought was appropriate to hear in connection with

8 the case against Dragan Nikolic.

9 We are very appreciative of you being here today and,

10 as for other witnesses, we realise what this involves for

11 you, to come here and tell us about things you have seen,

12 heard, all of the things you have been through, your

13 suffering, and which you are going to try to express to us

14 in your own words.

15 So we are very appreciative of you being here. We

16 are going to be listening very carefully to everything you

17 have to say. You should speak in a peaceful state of

18 mind. This is a place where justice is administered.

19 Feel at home in so far as possible. If you have any

20 problems at any point in time, please do not hesitate to

21 tell us. The Judges, the Tribunal, so far as possible,

22 will do what they can to help you.

23 You have the floor, Miss McHenry.

24 MISS McHENRY: Thank you, your Honour.

25 (To the witness): Ma'am, would you please state you

Page 676

1 full name?

2 A. My name is Zehra Smajlovic.

3 Q. How old are you, ma'am?

4 A. I am 61 -- 63, sorry.

5 Q. Mrs. Smajlovic, if you have any trouble hearing the

6 interpretation when I am asking questions, please just

7 tell us because we can adjust the volume of your

8 microphone. Is that all right? If at any point during

9 your testimony you would like to take a break, please just

10 let us know that also and I am sure the Judges would take

11 a break. Is that all right?

12 A. That is all right.

13 Q. Mrs. Smajlovic, where were you born?

14 A. I was born in Vlasenica.

15 Q. For how long did you live in Vlasenica?

16 A. 59 years.

17 Q. Did you live with your family in Vlasenica?

18 A. Yes, I did.

19 Q. Who was part of your family?

20 A. My family is in Tuzla now.

21 Q. Who was part of your family in Vlasenica? Who did you

22 live with?

23 A. I lived with my husband, with my son. I had two sons.

24 I had a daughter too. One of my sons is in Tuzla, and one

25 of my sons used to live with me in Vlasenica and my

Page 677

1 daughter got married in a village near Vlasenica.

2 Q. I believe that the court has heard testimony from a Mirsad

3 Smajlovic; is he any relation to you?

4 A. No.

5 Q. Is he any relation to your husband

6 A. Yes, he is.

7 Q. What relation is he?

8 A. He is my -- he is the son of my husband's brother.

9 Q. Ma'am, can you tell the court what happened in Vlasenica

10 in April 1992?

11 A. Yes, I can.

12 Q. Please do so.

13 A. It happened on the 15th, between the 10th and the 15th

14 April. Milorad (Lukic) came -- he is from the Serbian

15 party -- and he invited us to stay. He told us to stay in

16 Vlasenica. He told us that we will not be touched and we

17 would go on living together. After that a lot of us

18 stayed, some of us left. Then on the 21st, the Yugoslav

19 army came. The units that belonged to Vojvodina Corp.,

20 from Vojvodina, they took over Vlasenica together with the

21 Serbs, local Serbs, from Vlasenica and the surrounding

22 area.

23 That is how in the next morning, around 3 o'clock,

24 they entered the town, and when they got up the next

25 morning we saw tanks in the streets, soldiers, and we also

Page 678

1 saw the local Serbo Chetniks, as we called them. They

2 were together with them. They wore camouflage uniforms.

3 They were masked. They had socks -- they wore socks on

4 their heads and faces -- stockings on their faces.

5 Then I left Drum. It is a local cemetery, local

6 Muslim cemetery. That happened around the 25th April.

7 I cannot recall the exact date but I went to our cemetery,

8 the Muslim cemetery, and I saw a tank stationed there and

9 which belonged to the Yugoslav army, to the Vojvodina

10 Corps

11 I went there. I passed there. I saw it. I saw the

12 tank and I was stopped and they asked me: "Where are you

13 going, grandma?" I told them: "Well, I want to go over

14 there. I have some family over there". Then they said:

15 "What is this happening here? No-one is shooting, not a

16 single bullet has been shot and they, the Serbian party,

17 they called us. They invited us here. They told us

18 that allegedly Muslims were slaughtering Serbs in

19 Vlasenica, but here we realised that not a single bullet

20 had been shot. We have been cheated". A soldier told me

21 that and he told me not to go there. He said: "Go back.

22 You will be better over there." I did not know that

23 soldier. He wore a helmet on his head and also an olive

24 green uniform and he was dressed for the tank.

25 So I went back, and in front of the Ministry of the

Page 679

1 Interior building I saw a lot of soldiers around there, a

2 lot of soldiers belonging to the Yugoslav army, and also

3 some local Serbo Chetniks. I saw them standing there.

4 They asked for identity papers. They did not ask me

5 anything so I went back home. That is how it happened.

6 Q. With respect to the soldiers from Vojvodina, what towns

7 are part of Vojvodina, in particular is -----

8 A. We do not know. They did not tell us. He did not tell

9 me. He did not tell me where he was from. He just said

10 that they belonged to the Vojvodina Corps., Vojvodanskih

11 Corps.

12 Q. With respect to the Vojvodina Corps. do you know the

13 relationship between the Vojvodina and Novi Sad?

14 A. Well, I think that Novi Sad is in Vojvodina.

15 Q. At some point did the soldiers from the JNA army leave

16 A. Well, no, they stayed there a while. I do not know how

17 long, how many days they stayed there, but probably

18 between 10 and 15 days, but we could not move around a

19 lot; we were not allowed to. So later on they went. They

20 left. Those, the Serbo Chetniks, while they were there,

21 they already starting taking men to the police building.

22 They took them for interrogation. Then they released some

23 of them, some of them were held. Then they left. I do

24 not remember the exact day they left.

25 I did not move around a lot because I was not allowed

Page 680

1 to. Later on when I went to buy cigarettes I saw that

2 they had tanks. I realised that they had left weapons to

3 them, and near the Panorama Hotel there were tanks around

4 the hotel as well, and the tanks were also near the

5 cemetery. The tanks stayed and the soldiers had left.

6 They left the tanks to the Serbo Chetniks.

7 Then they started to arrest people, to evict people.

8 They started taking people to the camps. I was once

9 chased away from my home and then one of them, a soldier,

10 told me: "Grandma, go back to your house; you will not be

11 touched. You can go on living freely." Then they took

12 other people to the camp.

13 There was Mahmutovic Mina, Mirsad's wife, who had a

14 sick child and the soldier told her: "You can stay home

15 with your sick child. You are young. You can take care

16 of the grandma". The next day Mina left. Her husband had

17 been taken to the camp, and then she left the camp as

18 well. I stayed alone. I went back to my house from

19 Mina's house. So I stayed there for a while.

20 Then I also started hiding because I thought tha

21 some people would be left alone in the town, but then they

22 did not. They took many people to the camp.

23 I stayed in my house for a while. Then Aco Djuric

24 arrived, Pero's son, and also Sinisa Miljanic and Elvis

25 Djuric, Aco's brother, and they started to take us away

Page 681

1 from our homes. I went to Kicic Huma, her husband was

2 there too. He was hiding. Aco approached them and he

3 started to beat her husband. He started to beat her too

4 and I told him: "Aco, do not do it. You know that you

5 used to live together with my cousin. You grew up

6 together. Your mother is a Muslim. Do not do that. It

7 is not good what you are doing. You can have pity on

8 us." So he went to me and then kicked me twice here and

9 I had bruises all over. He told me: "If you tell anyone

10 about this, I will kill you, I will kill you on the

11 spot." So I did not say anything.

12 So we went to the camp and that is how we arrived at

13 the camp. First, they did not let us in the camp. We

14 waited outside a little bit. We saw three buses there,

15 buses that they used to take people to Batkovic, towards

16 Bijeljina, only Muslim men. There I recognised a lot of

17 people I knew, children of the people I knew from my

18 neighbourhood, from my street. I recognised Mirsad,

19 Nurija, Hasim -- there were many of them, I cannot

20 remember all of them -- Suljo Mujanovic, Djemel

21 Mujanovic. I recognised them as they were on the bus and

22 that is how they stood. They had to put their hands

23 behind their heads. Then the soldiers left and then we

24 were taken inside the camp. Then in the camp I saw some

25 women -- yes

Page 682

1 Q. Can I go back for a minute? First of all ---

2 A. Yes, you can.

3 Q. -- going back to the time when you were still in the town,

4 before you were brought to the camp, did you have any

5 discussions with anyone about the existence of a Crisis

6 Committee, Kruzni Stab, in Vlasenica?

7 A. Yes. I was -- I got confused a little bit. I apologise.

8 This is the first time for me here. I forgot to tell you

9 about Olja. Olja was our neighbour and I remember him

10 passing, walking with his wife and he told me: "Hello,

11 Zehra", and I told him: "Hello, Olja. Olja, what is

12 going on here? How come your wife is so nicely dressed?"

13 He said: "Well, she is working in the Crisis Committee".

14 I said: "What kind of Crisis Committee is that? Where is

15 it? How come it cannot protect us?" Then he said: "I do

16 not know anything about it. It is in the Bauxite

17 company". It was located on the outskirts of Vlasenica.

18 Then he said: "That is where it is." So I said: "What

19 do you think of this?" He said: "I do not know.

20 I cannot tell you anything. I am not allowed to tell you

21 anything."

22 I tried again to ask him to help me somehow.

23 I wanted to ask him if he could help me get on the bus and

24 not end up in the camp, if I could somehow leave for the

25 -- on that bus. He said: "Well, you can try", and that

Page 683

1 is what I did. I went to the bus station and I saw many

2 people standing there. They were putting them on the bus

3 and they told me: "Grandma, go back home. Do not go

4 anywhere. You are not going to be touched. I can

5 guarantee you that. I will take care of you. I wil

6 visit you from time to time. Do not worry."

7 So I went back to my home and I stayed there until

8 Aco took me away from my home.

9 Q. Did you ever have any conversation with Olja about people

10 detained in Susica camp and asking why they were being

11 detained?

12 A. No, I did not. He did not tell me that. He was not

13 allowed to. He just kept silent. I realised that he did

14 not mean anything. He was not malicious, but he just

15 kept silent. They were not allowed to talk to us, to

16 Muslims.

17 Q. When you were brought to Susica, when Aco came to your

18 house, were you brought to Susica voluntarily? In other

19 words, did you want to go or were you taken there

20 forcibly?

21 A. I was forced to. He beat me, yes, he kicked me with his

22 shoes here. I had bruises all over. I just had to; we

23 were forced to go. They were beating us as we were

24 leaving our houses and they just took all the people from

25 the street and then they took us to the camp.

Page 684

1 Q. Do you know approximately what time this was that you were

2 taken to the camp?

3 A. It was the 30th June.

4 Q. How many other people were taken with you to the camp?

5 A. About 20 people, 20 women and children.

6 Q. Were these people from the same street that you lived on?

7 A. Yes, but also from other streets from the neighbourhood.

8 Q. The people who brought you to Susica, were they local

9 soldiers?

10 A. Yes, they were locals, all neighbours

11 Q. Were they in uniform?

12 A. Yes, they had olive green uniforms. Aco had one and Elvis

13 too, Sinisa Miljanic had his jeans on and black jacket on.

14 Q. I would like you to go to the time period when you were

15 brought to the camp. Can you describe when you were

16 brought inside, the physical structure of the camp and

17 where you were brought?

18 A. That was a large room with some 20 metres long and some 15

19 metres wide. When we were -- the door was very large.

20 The building was called the hangar and it had a very large

21 door through which we entered, and through which people

22 would also leave.

23 I can only say that as soon as I entered I saw there

24 women children, men, many men; I cannot tell you how

25 many. It is very difficult to decide how many people

Page 685

1 there were. We were all very frightened and could not

2 think calmly or we could not count but there was a large

3 number of people. When I entered there I saw Fikret

4 Arnaut and Cece, nicknamed Cece. He was sitting on the

5 concrete floor. He was swollen.

6 I looked at him and said: "Cice, what happened?"

7 He said: "Look at me and you will see". He said: "Give

8 me a glass of water" and somebody said, somebody came to

9 him to give him water because at the corner of the

10 building next to the door there was a can of water, and

11 she was -- she tried to give him water but then the

12 soldier said: "No, I kill you if you do that", so she

13 turned back without giving him the water. So the evening

14 came and then this devil came.

15 Q. Before we get to that, Mrs. Smajlovic, can I ask you

16 couple of other general questions about the camp? In

17 particular, do you have any idea about --

18 A. Yes, you may.

19 Q. -- how many women were at the camp when you arrived there

20 besides your group of 20 women and children?

21 A. There would be some 50 women, if not more. I honestly say

22 I could not count and there were lots of children as well,

23 lots of children, and quite a number of women. I cannot

24 give you the exact figure, because I did not count and we

25 were not even allowed to look around too much.

Page 686

1 Q. Were there more men than women in the camp when you were

2 there?

3 A. Oh, yes. There were many more men than women, yes.

4 Q. When you were brought to the camp was any property taken

5 from any of the detainees?

6 A. No, not at once. At first they did not take anything but

7 later they did. Later they did, two or three days later.

8 This devil, Nikolic, told us, he entered the building, he

9 shouted, cursing our Muslim mothers. He had a cigarette

10 in his hand and he said: "Look, listen, you are less

11 worth for me than this cigarette butt. This cigarette

12 butt is more valuable than you are. Anybody who has

13 anything on them, cigarettes, matches, gold, anything,

14 please throw it on to the floor into the centre of the

15 hangar, of the room", and so they did, people did that.

16 I did not have anything. I only threw my packet of

17 cigarettes and the lighter, cigarette lighter.

18 When all of this was on the floor, he called two

19 people, two detainees, asking them to collect all of these

20 objects. He brought two buckets and they put it -- pu

21 the objects into the buckets. They took it outside in

22 front of the door and came back. What happened with these

23 objects later, we do not know. Whether it was for himself

24 or whether it was for somebody else, we do not know

25 because he closed the door of the hangar.

Page 687

1 Q. Was any record made of what property each detainee was

2 turning over?

3 A. No, not at all, nothing. Nobody made any record. No

4 record was made, nor was there an opportunity to do that.

5 Q. Do you know whether or not this property was ever returned

6 to the people to whom it belonged?

7 A. Never, never. Nobody ever had anything returned that had

8 been taken away from them.

9 Q. When you said there were other women there, were you the

10 oldest woman who was at the camp?

11 A. Yes. I saw another woman that was older than me. She

12 must have been 75 years old, maybe 80. That was Hacic,

13 the woman's name was Hacic, but I forget her first name

14 now. She was also in the detention room. Then later she

15 wanted to go to the toilet, they would not allow her, and

16 then Dragan Nikolic came and said: "Bind her", so they

17 bound her hands and feet. They tied ropes around her

18 hands and feet so that she could not actually go to the

19 toilet and she had to urinate in the room where we were.

20 Q. Do you know at any time while you were at the camp was

21 there a woman named Hasna Cakisic at the camp?

22 A. Yes. She was brought after me, some 12 days after me.

23 Q. Do you know approximately how old she was?

24 A. I would say that she was 65, not more than that, I should

25 say, 65 years old. Again I cannot judge very well bu

Page 688

1 I know her, I know her family, but I never asked her

2 exactly how old she was.

3 Q. Inside the camp were the women kept -- can you describe

4 where the women were kept versus where the men were kept,

5 and if there were any areas within that big room used for

6 special purposes?

7 A. Let me try to describe this. This is the hangar, the

8 large, large room, the hangar. One side -- men were on

9 one side, the other side, the corner, was empty and we all

10 women were on this side, and there were buckets in the

11 other corner which were used for urination and

12 defecation. This was our toilet, if you like. At the far

13 end were people who were being beaten and when Nikolic

14 decided who he would beat there were people by these

15 buckets and they were taken out to be beaten then.

16 Q. When you refer to Nikolic, do you know his full name?

17 A. Nikolic Dragan was his name. His father was -- oh,

18 I forget the name of his father now.

19 Q. Did you know Dragan Nikolic before you arrived at the

20 camp?

21 A. Yes, I used to know him. I used to see a lot of him.

22 I knew his father and mother.

23 Q. Do you know what Dragan Nikolic's role in the camp was,

24 what was his position?

25 A. He was the commander of the camp.

Page 689

1 Q. How did you know he was the commander?

2 A. He told us himself. He said: "I am the commander of this

3 camp. You should know that there is nobody above me."

4 That is what he told us in front of everybody. He said:

5 "I am your God and you have no other God but me"

6 Q. You were starting to tell us, Mrs. Smajlovic, about what

7 happened the first night you were at the camp when Dragan

8 Nikolic came in, I believe?

9 A. Yes, he walked in. Dragan Nikolic, he shouted and yelled,

10 swore at, swore our Muslim mothers, cursed, said: "You

11 should know that I am the one who is responsible for this

12 outfit. I am responsible for you. You are in my hands.

13 I can do what I like."

14 Then he approached Fikret Arnaut and then he took him

15 out, started beating him in front of the hangar. The door

16 was open. He had a bandage on his hand and something dark

17 on the fingers. I do not know what it is because I am not

18 familiar with these objects, but there was first a bandage

19 on the fingers and then something very dark on his

20 fingers. The man who was beaten started crying for help,

21 for mercy. Then he took two other prisoners, Agic, Rasim

22 Agic, his son I mean, but I have forgotten the name now

23 and Alija Ferhatovic, Muharem, the son of Muharem

24 Ferhatovic. These two were called out to pour water out

25 of a bucket over this man that was lying there.

Page 690

1 Then we saw that Dragan was removing his bandages and

2 in front of the hangar there was the guard house and Zija

3 was taken there from the hangar to help the guards, to

4 work for them. She also poured water for Dragan. He

5 washed his hands. She gave him the towel. Then she came

6 -- he came back into the hangar, came to Fikret Arnaut

7 and started kicking him with his feet and shoes. This was

8 like a rabid dog. You could not watch that. The screams

9 were horrible to hear and cries for mercy.

10 Then Dragan would leave and the door was locked. Th


12 door was closed again and that is the way it was. That is

13 the way it was from the first night on when we came to the

14 camp.

15 Q. You just described, as I understand you, the first night

16 when Dragan Nikolic beat Cece Arnaut. After that first

17 night, did you ever see ---

18 A. That was the story.

19 Q. -- Cece Arnaut beaten at any other time?

20 A. This was every night. Every night for two times as long

21 as I stayed there in the camp for 20 days. Every night

22 the same punishment, the same beating. He was completely

23 broken. He was being dragged out, then dragged from

24 outside back into the hangar, and this was done by the

25 detainees who had to do this. Ferhatovic and Agic, they

Page 691

1 were -- they poured water over him and were then forced to

2 drag him back into the hangar. So, he was a very strong

3 and powerful man, and he said: "I cannot go on like

4 this." Then Nikolic said: "I cannot kill this manure".

5 He would curse his Muslim mother and it went on. It was

6 repeated on and on, again and again.

7 Q. Was there a man named Ismet Dedic at the camp when you

8 were there?

9 A. Yes, there was.

10 Q. What do you know about Ismet Dedic? Do you know where he

11 was from or where he lived?

12 A. He was from Gerovi. Gerovi is some 15 kilometres away

13 from Vlasenica, maybe not even 15, 10 kilometres.

14 I cannot tell you exactly. I know his family because my

15 daughter is married there in Gerovi and he used to work in

16 the Bauxite company. He got a flat in Vlasenica and h

17 lived there with his wife and children. He was a nice

18 man. I know him -- I knew him.

19 He was brought to the camp and each night and each

20 day, they just kept bringing more people to the camp from

21 the town, from the surrounding villages, so the camp was

22 getting full. So he approached Dedic. Dedic was sitting

23 at that moment with his head bent down. He told him:

24 "You are a very nice man" and then he walked out.

25 Q. Who was this?

Page 692

1 A. Dragan Nikolic.

2 Q. Other than the time you saw Nikolic say to Mr. Dedic that

3 he was a nice man, did you ever see any other contact

4 between Dragan Nikolic and Mr. Dedic?

5 A. No, never. No.

6 Q. Did you ever see anything happen to Mr. Dedic?

7 A. After he had said that he went out and then he came back

8 again, and again he had those bandages on his hand and he

9 had the black finger on his hand again. He went to Dedic

10 and he kicked him and then Dedic got up, and followed

11 Nikolic out. Then he started beating him, stomping on him

12 with his military boots on. He beat him so much you could

13 not recognise him any longer.

14 So then he came back in the hangar, and he called

15 Ferhatovic and Agic. He called them out. So they went

16 out. Then they brought Dedic in and put in the punishment

17 corner inside the hangar. You could not recognise Dedic's

18 eyes, mouth. He had blood all over his face. So he

19 gurgled a little bit in that corner for maybe one hour,

20 hour and a half, and then he died.

21 Then other prisoners knocked at the door and th

22 guards opened the door, and then they threw inside a

23 plastic bag. Then they wrapped him, wrapped Dedic, in the

24 bag and they took him out.

25 They stayed out for about 15 minutes and then they

Page 693

1 came back inside. We asked them: "What happened? Where

2 did you bury him?" Then Ferhatovic just motioned, meaning

3 he did not know anything. He was not allowed to say

4 anything. He knew that he would share the same fate.

5 That is what I know about Dedic.

6 Q. When you say Ferhatovic motioned, which Ferhatovic are you

7 referring to?

8 A. Alija Ferhatovic.

9 Q. When you described when he was beating him and stamping on

10 him, who is "he"? Who was beating Mr. Dedic?

11 A. Dragan Nikolic.

12 Q. Was there also a man named Mevludin Hatunic at the camp

13 when you were there?

14 A. Yes, there was.

15 Q. Would you like to take a break or would you like a glass

16 of water, Mrs. Smajlovic?

17 A. No, I am all right. I will drink water later, but I can

18 speak now without drinking any water. So just continue,

19 please.

20 Q. Did you know Mr. Hatunic before you were at the camp?

21 A. Yes, yes. He lived not far from me. We were all people

22 from Vlasenica. I used to know them, I used to know their

23 parents, their children, their wives. I knew everybody.

24 He was a plumber, and he worked in Vlasenica.

25 Q. What, if anything, did you observe with respect to

Page 694

1 Mr. Hatunic at the camp

2 A. Yes, he was -- they called him to repair the plumbing or

3 water supply. He went. He worked for a day and

4 he -- I cannot tell you which day that was. It is very

5 difficult for me. I just cannot remember the dates and

6 the days when things happened because in this horror we

7 lost track of time. Anyway he came. He walked into the

8 hangar, followed by Dragan Nikolic and Dragan Nikolic

9 said: "Ah, you and I will go out now".

10 So he took him out and beat him and beat him, and

11 shouted: "What will you be singing and what have you been

12 singing? You went there to a Serb and he offered brandy,

13 you drank it and you said that your bird will sing one

14 day." But he never said anything about any bird singing or

15 anything. He did not say anything. Of course, he was not

16 drunk. He knew what was happening and then he would not

17 have done that.

18 So, Nikolic took him out and beat him again with the

19 bandaged hand, with a black object on it, and he hit him.

20 The man cried for mercy, cried for help, and eventually

21 when he fainted, he looked like dead. Then again Nikolic

22 called Agic and Ferhatovic, Alija Ferhatovic. They came,

23 they dragged him into the hangar and he started groping

24 and turning around.

25 You could not see his face properly because it was

Page 695

1 all disfigured and he was groping, came to Cece, to Bego.

2 Bego took him, slowly put him to his punishment corner and

3 so he was there for an hour or two. He gurgled. He

4 suffocated and then he died. Ferhatovic and Agic came put

5 on him on a stretcher, wrapped in a plastic bag, took him

6 out and again they came back after 10 to 15 minutes. W

7 knew that the burial must have been taking place somewhere

8 not very far from the hangar.

9 Q. Was there also at the camp a man named Galib Music?

10 A. Yes, there was.

11 Q. Did you know Mr. Music, beforehand do you know anything

12 about him?

13 A. Yes. Yes.

14 Q. Where was he from?

15 A. He was from Vlasenica. He was a born Vlasenica man, just

16 like I am.

17 Q. Do you know about how old Mr. Music was?

18 A. I would say he was roughly 60, not more than 60. I would

19 say 60, 61 or 2, not more than that.

20 Q. Do you know whether or not before he was brought to the

21 camp Mr. Music and Mr. Dragan Nikolic knew each other?

22 A. They were actually first next door neighbour, first

23 neighbours. Their houses were one next to the other and

24 they knew each other very well.

25 Q. What, if anything, did you observe happen to Mr. Music

Page 696

1 while you were at the camp?

2 A. He, Dragan Nikolic, came and Galib Music was seated

3 smoking a cigarette. Dragan entered and called him out.

4 Again on that occasion he had a bandaged hand plus that

5 dark object. He took Galib out, Galib, and started

6 beating him. Galib cried for mercy. Then he could not

7 speak. Then he trampled him with his heavy shoes, beat

8 him all over the body, the kidneys -- and this was

9 impossible even to watch such a beating.

10 Then again the same thing happened. Again he called

11 Alija Ferhatovic and he called the other man. They came

12 They dragged Galib into the hangar and he lived for no

13 more than half an hour after that. He died. Somebody

14 knocked on the door of the camp from the inside. The

15 guards came, gave them a plastic bag or plastic something,

16 put him on the stretcher and took him out and again came

17 back fairly quickly, fairly soon.

18 Q. While you were at the camp, were you ever there when some

19 visitors came from outside the camp?

20 A. Yes, a number came. Some five to six people would come

21 with Dragan Nikolic, and then Dragan would say -- now,

22 this was a van, a van or minibus, rather, with the company

23 name of Elastik on it -- so they would come and Dragan

24 would enter with them. On the first occasion when they

25 arrived they took six or seven, seven people. He took

Page 697

1 them out in the morning, and they came back round

2 6 o'clock in the afternoon. They brought them back. They

3 entered the hangar but Pasic did not come back, Ekrem

4 Pasic, I think that was the name. I do not know his first

5 name. He is not my next door neighbour, so he lived some

6 distance from my house. So I know that his name was Pasic

7 and I think it was Ekrem. Ekrem was probably his first

8 name. He was not brought back.

9 Then the door was closed. We asked: "Where is

10 Ekrem?" They said: "He is no longer there. He does not

11 exist any more". We knew that he was killed. Then Dragan

12 started to shout in front of the camp. The door was ajar

13 and you could hear everything that happened outside.

14 Also, his voice was very strong and clear because he was

15 yelling all the time. So he asked: "Where is he?" and

16 the man came: "Oh, well, forget him." So I understoo

17 that. I mean, Dragan Nikolic was asking about Ekrem, I am

18 sure, and the other answered: "Well, you know, forget

19 him" which means he had been killed.

20 Later we learned that when he was taken there, then

21 he said: "But do not say that to anybody, do not spread

22 the word". I do not know who it was that said that.

23 Somebody came to us women and said: "I was there. Dika

24 Zubovic was there", because he was a friend of Dika

25 Zubovic. He spoke about Ekrem and he came to her and

Page 698

1 said, I do not know his name, Ali Hodjic, I think, but I

2 do not know the first name, and he said, well, they were

3 digging a canal, a trench, or something, I do not know,

4 and that he was a bit further away from the rest of the

5 group and when they stepped out of the canal a shot was

6 heard and they waited for Ekrem to appear. He did not

7 appear and then they left. So they were told that Ekrem

8 had been killed in that canal.

9 Q. While you were at the camp did anyone ever visit the camp

10 who came on a helicopter?

11 A. No, no with helicopter. A helicopter flew over -- the

12 door of the hangar was open. We were outside. We were

13 eating. The helicopter flew over. I do not know who was

14 there. They started shooting. The guards started

15 shooting -- Nikolic as well -- and then Nikolic said:

16 "Ah, this is our God over there in helicopter" but who

17 was there, I do not know. I could not see who was in the

18 helicopter because I was in the camp and he was in the

19 helicopter.

20 Q. When you say the guards and Nikolic were shooting, do you

21 mean they were shooting at the helicopter or they wer

22 shooting for some other reason?

23 A. No, not at the helicopter, no, no. They were shooting for

24 joy. The helicopter had flown away and they were so

25 joyful that they thought they could celebrate by

Page 699

1 shooting. They were rejoicing seeing the helicopter and,

2 as far as I know, the helicopter then landed in the

3 Vlasenica football field.

4 Q. While you were at the camp did you learn anything about

5 some detainees delivering letters?

6 A. This was Nikolic who sent, first, Biba Hadzic who took a

7 letter to Cerska sent by Nikolic while her two sons

8 remained in the camp. Then the letter was an invitation

9 or an order for Cerska to surrender. So then Biba left

10 for Cerska. Then the Muslims, when she came to Cerska did

11 not allow her to go back to the camp so we do not know

12 exactly what happened, but later they sent Mejra Sabic and

13 she was sent. She also left with the letter but never

14 came back. Then Fata, Fata Osmanlic was sent, but none of

15 them ever came back from Cerska to tell us exactly what

16 happened. The Cerska authorities, our soldiers there,

17 Muslim soldiers, did not allow her to go back to the camp,

18 so they remained in Cerska until Cerska was occupied, but

19 when Cerska was occupied they were brought to Tuzla, they

20 came to Tuzla.

21 Q. With respect to at least the first letter that Biba Hadzic

22 had, how do you know that the letter was an order for

23 Cerska to surrender?

24 A. Her son told us that, that Biba had gone to Cerska, that

25 she was sent with a letter asking, calling on Cerska to

Page 700

1 surrender. That is what I know

2 Q. Approximately, if you know, how far away is Cerska from

3 Vlasenica?

4 A. 25 kilometres perhaps, not more than that, 25 to 30,

5 perhaps. 25, I think, is more like it. Between 25 and 30

6 kilometres. I am sorry, I cannot be precise. I know

7 Cerska but I never worried about how many kilometres it

8 was distance from Vlasenica. Roughly 25 kilometres.

9 Q. When were you released from Susica, Mrs. Smajlovic?

10 A. It could have been the 19th or 20th July.

11 Q. Can you describe the circumstances surrounding your

12 release, how it worked?

13 A. Nikolic came and he said: "I will send you to Kladanj, so

14 that you can go over to your people, to Ustashas", that is

15 how he called, how he called our army. So we waited

16 there. He did not know who will be selected to go. It

17 was around 6 o'clock in the afternoon. He came back again

18 and he said: "You, you, you". He selected some people as

19 he wanted and he had one truck and one bus. So it was my

20 turn, and he told me: "Get up". So I got up and that is

21 how we went.

22 The bus was full and the truck was full as well,

23 fully loaded. They loaded us as straw, but a lot of

24 people were left behind, a lot of men, women and

25 children. Then when we left the camp we reached their

Page 701

1 checkpoint first, and on that checkpoint we were ordered

2 to get off the bus and the truck and then they started

3 selecting young women, girls. The first one was only 14

4 and the second could have been 16 or 17, and then they

5 selected other young girls. I knew them all. They were

6 from Vlasenica. There were many young women there, youn

7 and beautiful women, even some children.

8 So they started separating them from us, older women,

9 and putting them aside in the street. When that was over

10 they selected about 20, 27 young women. You just could

11 not watch and I could not tell how many they were. But

12 I was so sorry for those young women, girls, children.

13 One of them was a very young mother. She could have been

14 25. Two sisters they were, one of them was pregnant and

15 one of them had a small child with her. The child was

16 maybe three years old, not more than that, and they were

17 also selected.

18 Then they started yelling: "We want the Muslims to

19 see what our seed is", that is what, the expression they

20 used. Then they cursed us again, swore. You could not

21 watch it. Mothers were crying. Their children were being

22 separated and I stood aside. It was so hard for me and

23 I started to cry. I had just left the camp, so I was very

24 tired, very hungry and dirty. It was so difficult for

25 me.

Page 702

1 There was a fence near the road and one of them, one

2 of them, a soldier was standing there. He held a rifle in

3 his hand and he said: "Grandma, stop. Do not cry. It is

4 not my fault". I could see tears in his eyes and he

5 said: "Grandma, please, do not cry. It is not my

6 fault". Then I just kept silent. I bowed my head and

7 I cried. Then he said: "Just walk straight in the middle

8 of the road. Do not stray aside from the road because it

9 is mined. So once you reach that place there is a hotel

10 over there". It was in the wilderness. There is a forest

11 over there and a river as well and we people fro

12 Vlasenica, we used to go to that hotel before, and then he

13 said: "When you reach the hotel there is no-one up

14 there. Then you should speak very loud because it will be

15 dark so as your people will not shoot to us because they

16 will not know who is coming", and that is how we arrived

17 there.

18 It was difficult. There were many roads there, many

19 logs on the road. It was completely dark and when we

20 reached that place where our people were, they had to

21 carry me. I could not walk any more, so they just carried

22 me. Two young men who approached me, I do not know them,

23 they carried me and then we arrived at Ravne where our

24 soldiers were and then they called some buses, and that is

25 how we arrived at Kladanj.

Page 703

1 I spent the night at Kladanj and the next day I was

2 transported into Tuzla in a school building, and that is

3 where I found my husband, my family, my children when

4 I got there.

5 Q. With respect to the young women who were taken away, did

6 you ever see or hear from any of those young women again?

7 A. No, never. Never -- any of them. They are just no longer

8 there. We know -- we know that, and Dragan Nikolic knows

9 about it very well. That is what he did actually.

10 MISS McHENRY: I do not have any more questions for this

11 witness, your Honour.

12 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: : [Original in French] Mrs. Smajlovic,

13 the Judges have several

14 additional questions to put to you. We would suggest a

15 break and we would resume at 11.30. You will come back

16 because, as I have said, the Judges do have several

17 questions for you. That way, you can make the most of th

18 break. We have our witness assistance facilities here,

19 the people have been taking care of you since you have

20 come to The Hague. So during this break you will be seen

21 to and we will resume in 20 minutes at 11.30. The meeting

22 is adjourned.

23 (Short Adjournment)

24 (11.30 a.m.)

25 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: : [Original in French] Prosecution,

Page 704

1 please, before giving you

2 the floor, I would like to ask Mrs. Smajlovic how she is

3 feeling, if she is feeling all right? Did you rest a

4 little bit, did you?

5 A. Yes, I am feeling all right. Thank you. Thank you very

6 much.

7 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: : [Original in French] You have the

8 floor, m'am.

9 MISS McHENRY: Thank you. Mrs. Smajlovic, is there anything

10 besides what you have asked you and what you have already

11 testified to that you would like to tell your Honours

12 about what happened?

13 A. Yes, there is.

14 Q. Why do you not please tell us?

15 A. When I was in the camp, Dragan Nikolic came on 10th July

16 and he took 12 men Muslim, 12 Muslim men, and said: "They

17 are going to cut grass", but these men never came back to

18 the camp. They never returned, nor have they ever sent

19 word of their whereabouts to anybody.

20 Q. Do you know who any of these men were?

21 A. There was there somebody called Hasanovic, Hajro called,

22 nicknamed Hane, but I do not remember his second name.

23 There was a man called Hasanovic then Bego Topcic, Ali

24 Hodjic, Mustafa Ali Hodjic and Redjo Ali Hodjic. Thes

25 were the people that I knew very well. I saw them leave

Page 705

1 the camp and the rest I did not know so well or I did not

2 recognise them.

3 Dragan was yelling and there were other Serbian

4 solders who were with Dragan, so it was difficult to

5 register everything, but I knew that he said he was taking

6 12 men who will go and cut grass. So he started pointing

7 at them and selecting them, but these were the ones that

8 I recognised. That is all.

9 MISS McHENRY: Thank you, Mrs. Smajlovic. Thank your,

10 Honours. I have nothing further.

11 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Thank you, madam.

12 JUDGE ODIO BENITO: Thank you. Madam Smajlovic, while you were

13 at the camp did you see any women working in the guard

14 house washing dishes, making coffee, cleaning the place?

15 A. Yes, they were washing the dishes. This was done by Sija

16 Zepcanin and Biba Hadjic, these two.

17 Q. At the camp were you physically mistreated?

18 A. No, women were not mistreated, none of them, only this old

19 woman that was once tied by Nikolic because she asked to

20 go to the toilet when it was not the time to go.

21 JUDGE ODIO BENITO: Thank you, madam. No further questions.

22 JUDGE RIAD: Mrs. Smajlovic, you were in the same hangar or

23 camp with the men. Were you mixed or was there a barrier

24 between the men and women in such a way that you had your

25 intimacy reserved?

Page 706

1 A. No, no. We were together in the same hangar but men were

2 at one side and we were on the other side, women and

3 children, but there was no barrier.

4 Q. So, in fact, you were living together, you could see eac

5 other in every way?

6 A. Yes, of course, yes, we could. That is true. We could

7 see each other and we saw the whole room.

8 Q. You were treated like men, I mean, using the toilets and

9 all that sort of thing, you had to do it in the hangar?

10 A. Yes. We had to use the buckets. There was a corner and

11 there were actually two corners, and we women were a bit

12 ashamed. There were men there, my brothers were there, my

13 sons were there, children and all people from Vlasenica

14 and the surrounding area, and they were all younger

15 people. So there were only a few people my age, the rest

16 were younger people. I would call them like my children,

17 you know.

18 So I was ashamed and there were other women who were

19 very embarrassed, but we had to do it and what we did was

20 we took a blanket, and then one would be holding the

21 blanket and the other would be doing, urinating or

22 whatever. So the blanket was put there.

23 Q. You said that you were taken in a truck, all of you, to

24 the camp. When you were taken in the truck and you said

25 there were 20 women and children and so on to the camp of

Page 707

1 Susica, how did they choose you? Were they choosing

2 certain people and leaving others or just collecting

3 anybody?

4 A. When they took us to the camp, you are asking about our

5 being taken to the camp, or when we were leaving the

6 camp? Are you asking about the arrival in the camp? I

7 did not .....

8 Q. The very first taking of people to the camp. Whom were

9 they taking exactly? Were they taking only Muslims o

10 were they taking the opposition or people who fought

11 against them? What was their determining criteria?

12 A. You see, they were collecting only Muslims, only Muslims.

13 This was the only criterion and there was no other

14 criterion, just being a Muslim or not being a Muslim.

15 That was the only thing for them. They did not worry who

16 he was, whether he was -- what their occupation was. The

17 important thing was that he was a Muslim or she was a

18 Muslim.

19 Q. You also said that nobody would talk to you because there

20 was an order that nobody would talk to Muslims; is that

21 right?

22 A. That was true. They did not -- they were not allowed to

23 talk to us. No Serb or a Serb woman, man or woman, were

24 not allowed to talk to us Muslims. My neighbours, next

25 door neighbours, would pass and I would say: "Good

Page 708

1 morning" when I saw them or "Good afternoon" or "Good

2 evening" or whatever. They would just lower their heads

3 and would not even answer my greeting, "Good morning" or

4 "Good evening". They would just lower their heads and

5 pass as if they had never seen me before while they had

6 used to drink coffee with me, we used to have chats

7 together. We were very good friends, but I do not blame

8 them, you see. They were acting on some kind of orders,

9 prohibition orders, and that was it.

10 Q. When did this start exactly?

11 A. That started on 21st April when the JNA entered Vlasenica

12 and when they captured Vlasenica. Up to that date

13 everything was nice and fine.

14 Q. In the camp you said that Nikolic would choose a man an

15 beat him and he would die later inside the hangar like

16 Dedic and Music. What made him choose these people, in

17 particular? Did they have a special role in the

18 community?

19 A. No, they had no special role at all. They were nice, fine

20 people but they were Muslims and that, I think, was the

21 only reason. They did not choose anybody in particular,

22 just Muslims, and they took them one after the other.

23 Q. When you were packed in the truck after leaving the camp,

24 you said that they stopped the truck and they selected

25 girls between, like, 15 years old, 16 years old, and there

Page 709

1 was -- they took 27 young women. What did you hear about

2 these women afterwards and what happened to them?

3 A. Not a word was ever heard from them. Nobody ever heard

4 from them after that. We do not know whether they exist

5 at all.

6 Q. But you said that you heard the soldiers saying, and

7 I quote you: "We want Muslims to see how our seed is"; is

8 that right?

9 A. That is right. That is exactly what they said.

10 Q. That is all you heard after that?

11 A. Yes, that is all. That is all. Nothing more.

12 JUDGE RIAD: Thank you very much.

13 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Mrs. Smajlovic, let

14 me assure you I am

15 not going to put many questions to you, but you stayed in

16 Susica camp for some 20 days; the men went out to work in

17 the forest. What were the women doing meanwhile?

18 A. Nothing special. We just stayed in the camp. We did not

19 do anything. They did not force us to do anything, to

20 work. We just sat there

21 Q. The children in the camp, what did the children do?

22 Children like to play, they like to run around, keep

23 busy. So what was that like for the children in the camp?

24 A. Well, the children just sat down. They were not allowed

25 to move around. They were with their mothers sitting in

Page 710

1 their laps, and they brought, according to Nikolic's

2 orders, Sija Zepcanin she used to bring milk to children,

3 a biscuit. Then for lunch they also had some food, the

4 same food as we had. In the evening for dinner children

5 received a cup of milk or a biscuit or if they had some

6 spare bread they would give them a slice of bread. I also

7 received some food from guards when Nikolic was away.

8 They would give us either some milk to us elderly women.

9 I was very weak at that time.

10 Q. Since you have moved to where you are now, have you seen

11 any women survivors of that camp? Have you talked and

12 what can you tell us on that score?

13 A. I did not talk to them a lot. I know several women but

14 I seldom visit them. I live away from them. I do not

15 like to walk around too much. I am not really fit.

16 I have problems walking around. So I did not have many

17 conversations with them, but Dika Zubovic was there and

18 Fadila Karavic. She lives in Gracanica and that is far

19 from where we are. Then there was this woman Kicic, she

20 lives in Tuzla but, you know, you have to pay for the

21 ticket and visit her and I do not have any money so

22 I cannot see them very often. So I did not have many

23 conversations with them.

24 Q. You went through that some three years ago now. You are

25 at the International Criminal Tribunal which one da

Page 711

1 should listen to the defence. Now I would like to know,

2 to finish, what your feelings are about all you have lived

3 through. Do you feel hatred, sadness, a feel of revenge,

4 disgust?

5 A. I feel -- let me try to tell you. I feel that had my son

6 done something like that and had I seen it with my own

7 eyes, I would have testified against him as I am

8 testifying against Nikolic. I would not be sorry because

9 I would ask punishment for my son if he had done anything

10 like that, because this was pure hatred and the only

11 reason was to try to destroy the Muslim nation.

12 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Thank you, Mrs.

13 Smajlovic. The Tribunal

14 is very appreciative for you having testified. We realise

15 it was not easy for you. You will be seen out. You will

16 be cared for by the witness people. We hope you will have

17 a safe journey home to your new home, and we do hope that

18 you will find the piece of mind you deserve in the future

19 thank you very much.

20 THE WITNESS: [Original in Bosnian] Thank you very much.

21 (The witness withdrew).

22 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Prosecutor, you have

23 the floor.

24 MR. NIEMANN: Thank you, your Honour. Your Honours, that

25 concludes the evidence we wish to call from the

Page 712

1 eyewitnesses themselves. We have previously provided your

2 Honours with the documentation that was placed in support

3 of the indictment, plus additional material. The

4 statements from witnesses who were not called at these

5 proceedings, we would ask your Honours if the order for

6 non-disclosure that has been issued could be applied to

7 those statements. But in order to give some evidence o

8 the contents of some of those statements, we would seek to

9 call an investigator from the Office of the Prosecutor's

10 Investigation Section, Investigator Paepen. He, if your

11 Honours please, will give some evidence of the contents of

12 some of the more of the important statements that are

13 submitted in support of the indictment.

14 Subject to your Honours' order, Investigator Paepen

15 will not make reference to the names, addresses or any

16 other identifying material contained in the statements.

17 He will merely give a brief summary, if your Honours

18 please, of the contents of the more significant of those

19 statements. Subject to your Honours' orders, I will then

20 seek to call Investigator Paepen.

21 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] With regard to the

22 orders, the Registrar

23 perhaps can tell us exactly what the situation is. We had

24 an order for partial non-disclosure, so Mr. Paepen is

25 going to testify publicly with full disclosure of his own

Page 713

1 identity. So we will keep the order, except that as far

2 as this person goes we will lift it but we will keep for

3 the testimony. So we will lift it for Mr. Paepen but we

4 will maintain the order for the testimony that will be

5 referred to. Is that right? Can you agree with that,

6 Mr. Prosecutor? I admit it is a bit complicated.

7 MR. NIEMANN: Not entirely. Your Honour, Mr. Paepen's

8 evidence, what he will give and what he will say, is

9 contained in the statement. We do not seek that the

10 non-disclosure order apply to that. We merely seek that

11 the non-disclosure order apply to the statements

12 themselves and to the names and addresses of the witnesses

13 contained in those statements, but what he says is fo

14 public disclosure.

15 Just before I call Investigator Paepen, your Honours,

16 there is a statement which we will refer to and is listed

17 by the number 7.15. That is a statement by a witness of

18 the Prosecutor and the Prosecution will no longer rely

19 upon, and we ask that that be specifically excluded from

20 the material in support of the indictment.

21 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Mr. Registrar,

22 please. Yes, 7.15 I am

23 not acquainted with, but if you have decided to withdraw

24 that from the file that is fine. When we take the overall

25 decision we will rule on this matter as a whole. Simply

Page 714

1 as you said, the statement was among the documents that

2 had been provided to the Judge for confirming the

3 indictment. That statement was in the indictment under

4 Rule 47.

5 MR. NIEMANN: It was, your Honour.

6 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Now you are asking

7 that it be withdrawn.

8 We will take a decision on that, but we will tell you what

9 the decision is when we take the final decision on the

10 case as a whole.

11 MR. NIEMANN: If your Honours please.

12 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] With regard to Mr.

13 Paepen's testimony he

14 is an investigator; is that correct.

15 MR. NIEMANN: That is correct, your Honour.

16 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] So the Registrar is

17 going to draft a

18 decision to submit. So that everything be perfectly clear

19 to everyone, Mr. Paepen is not a victim. He is here

20 summoned by the Prosecutor in the same way as Dr. Gow

21 was. So he is an investigator. He is going to testify

22 publicly in line with Rule 61. So unlike the othe

23 witnesses who were victims and did not want their

24 addresses known, Mr. Paepen is going to be mentioning a

25 number of names and it is in respect of those names that

Page 715

1 the Prosecutor is asking us to see to it that they remain

2 confidential, that they are not disclosed.

3 So now it is a matter for the Registrar to come up

4 with the appropriate order. It is a bit complicated but

5 we know the Registrar will be able to do it.

6 One last question for you, Mr. Prosecutor. The wish

7 of the Tribunal, but it is only a wish, we will hear out

8 all the witnesses, and as you can see we are quite

9 attentive, but the wish of the Tribunal would have been

10 for us to finish by the end of the morning in hearing

11 testimony. If that is not possible we can go on this

12 afternoon. Did your office then plan to make a statement

13 just so that we can organise our work for today? You have

14 the

15 floor sir.

16 MR. NIEMANN: My colleague, Miss McHenry, will wish to make a

17 statement to your Honours in conclusion. I cannot be

18 certain that Mr. Paepen will finish in an hour, but I will

19 endeavour to move him along with such speed as I can

20 muster to achieve that end.

21 Your Honours, in relation to something that fell from

22 your Honour, Mr. Paepen will not mention the name of the

23 witnesses. He will refer to them by reference to the

24 statement number in your Honours' dossier. In fact I hand

25 to your Honour the list of references that Mr. Paepen will

Page 716

1 relate to. Your Honours, will see the statement number

2 and your Honours will see in the right-hand

3 column -- sorry, the right-hand column is the list o

4 numbers and in the right-hand column is the actual names.

5 It is those names that we are seeking to be kept

6 confidential. When Mr. Paepen refers to the number your

7 Honours will see the name to which he is making reference,

8 which is the statements that are contained in your

9 Honours' dossier. At the conclusion of his evidence he

10 has the statements which he can submit to your Honours for

11 the record if that is required, but those statements are

12 statements that are already in your Honours's dossiers.

13 As I said, this is not all the statements. This is

14 just a selection of the more important ones. There are

15 numerous other statements which your Honours have already

16 had access to and no particular reference will be made to

17 those.

18 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Maybe when we listen

19 to Miss McHenry we

20 could go into this. Just to make things clear, under this

21 Rule 61 hearing that is coming to an end can we take it

22 that the Prosecutor's Office thinks the major testimony is

23 in this list which will remain confidential, and then the

24 testimony we heard physically?

25 MR. NIEMANN: Yes, and all the other statements as well, but

Page 717

1 rather than go through every statement and have every

2 statement summarised, which would take probably two days,

3 it is better, we thought, just to rely on the most

4 important statements, but we do seek to rely on all the

5 statements when it comes to your Honours considering

6 evidence at the conclusion of the matter.

7 This is merely a selection that we have made based on

8 our assessment of what we think are the most important

9 witnesses and it is done this way in order to do it a

10 quickly and as efficiently as possible.

11 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Last question, Mr.

12 Prosecutor, but it is

13 more for your colleague now. I understand from

14 Mr. Paepen, we are not going to restrict him in this way,

15 he should say what he has to say, but it is just a view to

16 organisation. Miss McHenry, maybe you can tell us how,

17 long do you plan to speak in your conclusion since there

18 should not be any questions, just a few questions, just a

19 rough idea?

20 MISS McHENRY: Your Honour, I would estimate it would be

21 approximately between half an hour and 45 minutes,

22 although obviously I will take your guidance on that

23 matter.

24 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Fine. I believe we

25 can call Jozef

Page 718

1 Paepen.

2 Mr. Jozef Paepen, called.

3 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Can you hear, Mr.

4 Paepen?

5 A. I do, your Honour.

6 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] So if you could

7 kindly read out the

8 solemn declaration.

9 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will speak the truth,

10 the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

11 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] You have the floor,

12 Mr. Prosecutor.

13 MR. NIEMANN: Would you state your full name?

14 A. My name is Paepen Jozef.

15 Q. You are a citizen of what country?

16 A. I am a Belgian citizen.

17 Q. Where were you born?

18 A. I was born in Belgium.

19 Q. What is your current occupation

20 A. Since 1st July 1994 I worked as an investigator in the

21 Office of the Prosecutor, of the Tribunal.

22 Q. Prior to that what was your position?

23 A. I was an officer of the Belgian Military Police.

24 Q. In July of 1994 were you part of a team assigned to

25 investigate certain incidents relating to a particular

Page 719

1 camp at Susica in Vlasenica?

2 A. Yes, I was.

3 Q. Very quickly, for the benefit of their Honours, can you

4 tell them how you went about that process of

5 investigation?

6 A. As soon as we got the assignment we got information and

7 gathered information from the media, non-government

8 organisations, Bosnian authorities. From this

9 information, sir, we got the witnesses's names and then we

10 started to interview different witnesses. When

11 I interviewed most of those witnesses of course we got

12 access to more names.

13 Q. You and your team then proceeded to take a series of

14 statements from these witnesses?

15 A. Yes, sir, we did.

16 Q. Have you for the purposes of giving your evidence today

17 prepared a summary of some of those statements, in

18 particular the statements that you considered to be the

19 more important of all of the statements that were taken in

20 relation to this investigation?

21 A. Yes, sir, we selected 14 statements for that purpose.

22 Q. This is 14 out of some 50 odd statements; is that right?

23 A. Yes, sir, that is correct.

24 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Prosecuting Counsel,

25 excuse

Page 720

1 me, regarding

2 these documents, will they be made available to the

3 Tribunal?

4 MR. NIEMANN: They have already been made available to the

5 Tribunal, your Honour. The statements have, but I think

6 Mr. Paepen has further statements, further copies of

7 them. The copies have already been made available. They

8 are the original dossier.

9 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Yes, the original

10 dossier contains all

11 the testimonies, 7.46, and all the rest of them, but the

12 testimonial made before the Tribunal which will be part of

13 the transcription, as is the case for all the other

14 testimonials, but as part of the written version, will the

15 witness be able to deliver his document to the Tribunal or

16 is it just a personal document that he possesses?

17 MR. NIEMANN: I understand, your Honour, he has prepared notes

18 to assist him in giving the evidence as expeditiously as

19 possible. Those notes are not in a form I would imagine

20 would be of assistance to anyone except the witness, but

21 if your Honours wish to have the notes I do not think

22 there would be any difficulty in them being made

23 available, but he will be referring to them in order to

24 assist him to organise his evidence, in a manner to assist

25 him to deliver it as expeditiously as possible.

Page 721

1 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] As far as I am

2 concerned, I am not asking

3 for the personal notes of the witness. I was just

4 referring to what we did with Dr. Gow, because Dr. Gow did

5 submit a type of memorandum, a type of written note. If

6 this does not apply to the present witness we will not

7 insist on this point. I was just raising the question,

8 regarding the question of whether, in fact, Mr. Paepen ha

9 produced some sort of memorandum; if not, there is no

10 problem, Prosecuting counsel, and I will not pursue the

11 matter.

12 MR. NIEMANN: No, he has not prepared one. He has not prepared

13 a formal statement, in other words.

14 (To the witness): Mr. Paepen, when you refer in the

15 course of evidence to particular statements how is it that

16 you intend to identify the statement for the benefit of

17 their Honours so they know which one you are referring to?

18 A. The statements will be referred to by the number of

19 reference.

20 Q. OK. Starting, firstly, with the first statement, can you

21 proceed to give a summary of those statements that you

22 have specifically selected?

23 A. Yes, sir. The first statement is the statement which is

24 referred to under No. 7.27. This statement is of a 40

25 year old witness from Vlasenica who is a mechanical

Page 722

1 engineer. It is a statement about general information

2 about the situation in the city of Vlasenica until the

3 takeover by the Serbs.

4 The witness states that during the elections, the

5 multi-party elections, in 1990 he was elected and, as a

6 result of that, he was elected President of the Executive

7 Council in the city of Vlasenica. In the city of

8 Vlasenica there was a parliament which consisted of about

9 60 people. 27 of those delegates were Serbian, 26 were

10 Muslims from the SDA party and seven were from the

11 opposition. From this parliament an Executive Council was

12 constituted. The Executive Council was composed of six

13 people from which our witness was the President. Beside

14 the President there were two other Muslims and there were

15 then three Serbian.

16 Our witness states that he being the President of

17 Executive Council which are Muslim -- I am sorry, I have

18 interference -- as I told, the President of the Executive

19 Council, he was a Muslim. The Mayor was Serb. The

20 President of the police was also a Serb. In the city this

21 police was composed of about 170 reserve policemen. About

22 110 of these people were from Serbian nationality, the

23 others Muslims.

24 Our witness sent messages to the national

25 authorities, and the national police authorities urged the

Page 723

1 local authorities to change the number in order that the

2 two ethnic groups would be represented as they were in

3 number, that means around 50 per cent for each. However,

4 the witness states that the police chief and the mayor,

5 both of Serbian nationality, they did not comply with the

6 situation and the request of the national police

7 authorities.

8 The witness states further on that prior to the war

9 irregular military units were formed in the area of

10 Vlasenica. This matter he put to the national government

11 in Sarajevo, and he had several meetings with the military

12 JNA command of the troops who were based in a city Han

13 Pjesak which is not so far from Vlasenica.

14 The Serbian soldiers were arresting Muslim people,

15 and when the witness made this available, these remarks to

16 the Serbian Colonel, the answer was just simple: "You

17 know, they are soldiers. Things like that can happen."

18 In order to try to change this, and the witness asked th

19 Colonel that Muslim people would be also be allowed to be

20 a part of those irregular troops and put them under one

21 command. This demand was refused by the Colonel who told

22 that Muslims were not allowed to have weapons because if

23 they would have weapons they would shoot at the Serbs.

24 Later on, the witness says that in his function as

25 President of the Executive Council a lot of Serbs came to

Page 724

1 his office and they believed that he was a Serb mayor.

2 They came to him and they made complaints, asking him why

3 they, as Serb civilians, Serb citizens, did not yet have

4 received the weapons, because a lot of the other Serb

5 people had already received weapons. As he said: "But

6 who delivered the weapons?" The answer was that the

7 weapons were delivered by the army.

8 Another incident in the beginning of the month of

9 April 1992, the witness together with the Serb mayor went

10 to a spot where a shooting had taken place. When arrived

11 at this place, he saw several Serb children carrying

12 weapons. When he asked them: "How do you come to those

13 weapons? Where do they come from?" they said they were

14 given to them by the army.

15 Q. I think that he speaks also in his evidence about a Crisis

16 Committee being established, does he?

17 A. Yes, sir, he does.

18 Q. He gives general evidence about the background of what

19 happened leading up to and continuing on immediately after

20 the takeover?

21 A. Yes, that is right.

22 Q. Thank you. Would you move on to the next witness now?

23 A. I can, sir. The second witness is referred to unde

24 No. 7.1. This witness is a 59 year old lady. The lady

25 was not in the camp, but her daughter-in-law and 12 year

Page 725

1 old grand-daughter were in the camp. In order to be able

2 to move into the city of Vlasenica and to go from the

3 place in the city where she lived to the camp, which is

4 only a few hundred metres away from her home to the camp,

5 she needed a passport, a kind of laisser passer. This

6 laisser passer was to be asked at the city authorities.

7 She got one and we got the document in her possession.

8 Q. A copy was made available during the course of the

9 investigation?

10 A. Right, sir.

11 Q. The next witness?

12 A. Our next witness is referred to under the No. 7.33. The

13 witness is a female witness, 60 years old, whose son was

14 in the Susica camp. The witness says that after the

15 takeover by the Serbs, immediately people, Muslim people,

16 were arrested. First of all, the young men; some of them

17 were sent back to their homes and then they were arrested

18 again. The witness says that at the takeover, the Hodja,

19 the Imam, had to tell the people to turn over the

20 weapons. After that Serbs started looting the houses.

21 This

22 continued during the months May and June, and at the end

23 of the month of June her son was arrested at her home. A

24 few days later she was arrested.

25 When she arrived at the camp she found back her son,

Page 726

1 her son who had been severely beaten up. I quote the

2 witness: "When the older men were transported from the

3 camp to Batkovic, I heard my son, Fikret, asked to Dragan

4 Nikolic if he could go with them. Nikolic yelled: 'You

5 do not talk' and he put his bayonet in Fikret's mouth.

6 The bayonet stayed in my son's mouth. My son was

7 allegedly not wounded by the bayonet because I did not see

8 any blood at this moment, but I was not able to talk to my

9 son before I left the camp. When I left the camp my son

10 Figret was still able to walk. I believe this his

11 shoulder was broken because it was badly swollen. The

12 right side of his face was swollen. His right eye was

13 closed." End of the quote.

14 Q. Now the next witness?

15 A. The next witness is a 63 year old man. The statement is

16 referred as a No. 7.2.

17 Q. Just in summary form what can you tell us about this

18 statement?

19 A. In summary form, sir, this man has been arrested while

20 working at the field. He was working together with his

21 daughter. He was arrested by four men who were wearing

22 the JNA uniform. This happened on 1st June 1992. He was

23 brought to the Susica camp where he was interrogated first

24 time, then a second time. During this interrogation he

25 had been beaten and assaulted with a rifle butt.

Page 727

1 Three or four days after his arrival at the camp

2 Dragan Nikolic, the camp commander, whom he knew

3 personally because he had worked with his father, told him

4 to give him all the valuables, money, jewels also ID cards

5 with the promise that they would receive it back later on,

6 but they never received it back. The witness names a few

7 of the camp guards and during his stay he was a witness,

8 he saw some people who had been beaten and who died as a

9 result of the beatings

10 Q. Does he name those people?

11 A. Yes, sir, he does.

12 Q. What names are they, the ones that he saw killed?

13 A. The ones that he saw killed were Handzic, Durmo, Asim

14 Zildzic, a man called Zekic, Kolarevic and then two other

15 people whose name he does not know. During his stay at

16 the camp our witness also witnessed the incident with the

17 bayonet when the camp commander put the bayonet in the

18 mouth of the victim Arnaut.

19 Q. Thank you. The next witness?

20 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Prosecuting counsel,

21 if we could pay

22 attention to one particular point here regarding

23 confidentiality. You have just mentioned this incident of

24 the bayonet and you mentioned the name of somebody. We

25 have, in fact, concealed the name of the sister. I would

Page 728

1 like to point that fact out because we do have to pay

2 attention to this particular question. Do you agree with

3 that, Prosecuting counsel.

4 MR. NIEMANN: I do, your Honour, and I would ask the witness to

5 be careful about that.

6 (To the witness): When you are giving answers would

7 be careful not to .....

8 THE WITNESS: Yes, sir, I will. The next witness, your Honour,

9 is a female, 70 year old witness. The statement is

10 referred to under number 7.6. In the summary this witness

11 was taken out with the rest of the people from her street

12 around 24th June to the Susica camp. She witnessed that

13 detainees were beaten by Serb soldiers. Also this witness

14 witnessed some people who died as a result of the beating.

15 Q. Can you name those people that she witnessed being killed

16 A. Yes, she witnessed the killing of the people named Dzevad

17 Saric, Mevludin Hatunic and a man called Ismet.

18 Q. Did she make any observations as to who carried out in

19 whole or in part the activities in relation to these

20 killings?

21 A. This witness says that killings were done and the beatings

22 were done by Nikolic, sir.

23 Q. Is there anything else you want to say in relation to

24 that?

25 A. This witness has personally been beaten by Dragan Nikolic,

Page 729

1 the camp commander, and as a result of that there have

2 been established medical documents at her return.

3 Q. The next witness? The next witness, sir, is under the

4 statement, refer No. 7.34. It is a 64 year old factory

5 worker. The man lived in Vlasenica and after all the

6 events that happened in Vlasenica he decided to escape.

7 Together with a neighbour he tried to escape through the

8 woods but on the date of the 12th July 1992 he was

9 arrested in a village of Zeravic. From there they were

10 brought to the local village and then they were brought to

11 the SUP building, that is the police building in

12 Vlasenica.

13 In this building the witness has been beaten

14 severely, interrogated, and he states that his teeth were

15 beaten out. Then from this police building the witness

16 has been brought to the Susica camp where at the day of

17 his arrival and the day after the witness saw die two

18 people. One -----

19 Q. Can you give the names of those people?

20 A. Yes, sir. One was the name Music -- he did not know th

21 first name -- and the second one is Galib Music.

22 Q. Did he make any observations as to who participated in or

23 carried out these killings?

24 A. This witness, sir, it was the day of his arrival. The

25 people were laying inside of the building and he did not

Page 730

1 see the beating himself. He just saw the people laying

2 there and dying as a result of the beating and the lack of

3 care.

4 Q. Thank you. The next statement?

5 A. The next statement is a 40 year old carpenter. The

6 statement is referred to under No. 7.35. Again this

7 witness has been arrested while working at his field. The

8 day that he was arrested was 2nd June. The man was

9 brought also to the Susica camp. In this camp he

10 personally also witnessed the death of several people,

11 people who died as a result of beatings by camp personnel

12 or by the camp command.

13 Q. Have you got the names of those?

14 A. Yes, sir. The people who were beaten and who died as a

15 result of those beatings were Durmo Handzic and Asim

16 Zildzic.

17 Q. Did he also observe an incident in relation to the person

18 called Cece Arnaut?

19 A. Yes, sir, he did. He was also a witness on 30th June when

20 the commander Dragan Nikolic put a bayonet into the mouth

21 of that man.

22 Q. The next statement?

23 A. The next statement is a statement of a 33 year old

24 housewife. This statement is referred to under No. 7.37.

25 This witness lived in a neighbourhood of Vlasenica and she

Page 731

1 was there together with her two children, a son of 11 and

2 a daughter of five.

3 Because of the events and attacks in the area they

4 decided to run to the woods but they were arrested, and

5 they were brought to the Susica camp where they stayed for

6 about 20 days. She says in the camp men were separated

7 from the women, no proper toilet facilities, no food

8 during the first days. She says that Dragan Nikolic who

9 she knew from before, because she was a brother's working

10 colleague, was in charge of the camp. This witness saw

11 the killing of three people: Mevludin Hatunic, Galib Music

12 and a man called Mustafa.

13 Q. The next witness?

14 A. The next witness, sir, the statement of the witness who is

15 a 30 year machinist in an enterprise. This man -- I am

16 sorry this statement is referred to under the No. 7.10 --

17 this man is from the village of Papraca where he was a

18 member of a political party, President of the SDP, Social

19 Democrat party. The witness states that in the period of

20 4th April 1992, also in Papraca, ultimatum was given to

21 the Muslims in order to hand over the weapons, and they

22 had the time to do that until the 8th April.

23 Many Muslim people fled immediately after the

24 ultimatum, but a few days later, since everything seemed

25 to be calm, they returned, also our witness did. On

Page 732

1 31st May 1992 all people were ordered to get at a

2 particular place from where they were taken to the

3 Vlasenica school. They stayed for about eight to nine

4 days in the school and then they were transported to the

5 Susica camp in Vlasenica

6 The witness recognised Dragan Nikolic as the camp

7 commander. Nikolic told the prisoners that he was the

8 commander. During his stay in the camp he witnessed the

9 beating of Durmo Handzic by Dragan Nikolic and the witness

10 states that Handzic died the next morning. Also, the

11 witness states that during his stay in the camp people

12 named as Zekic Kolarevic and Ferhatovic -- excuse me,

13 Ferhatbegovic were taken out. Then the witness heard

14 shots and the people were never seen again.

15 Q. Thank you. The next witness?

16 A. The next witness, a statement referred to as the No. 7.19,

17 a 31 year old shoe factory worker from the village of

18 Papraca. On 31st May the witness was arrested while

19 working in the fields and brought also then from his

20 village to the school in Vlasenica.

21 Around 8th June he was brought to Susica camp. The

22 camp commander was Dragan Nikolic. The witness states

23 also that the following people were badly beaten and died

24 as a result of the beating: Durmo Handzic, Asim Zildzic.

25 Further on during his stay in the camp, Muharim Kolarevic,

Page 733

1 Dzevad Saric, Zekic and Rasid Ferhatbegovic were called

2 out and then the witness heard screams and gun shots. The

3 witness states that he did not hear Nikolic that night.

4 Q. The next witness?

5 A. The next witness is a statement referred under the

6 No. 7.41. It is an 18 year old female student who lived

7 in Vlasenica and was taken prisoner together with her

8 mother, two sisters and brought to the Susica camp on

9 1st July. Dragan Nikolic whom she knew from before the

10 war was the camp commander

11 1 During her stay until 22nd July, she remembers that a

12 man called Mevludin Hatunic as being interrogated and

13 beaten by Dragan Nikolic. She says that when Hatunic came

14 back, his face was swollen, he was vomiting blood and he

15 died. Also the man Galib Music was taken out and beaten

16 by Nikolic. A few days later this man died also.

17 Q. Thank you. The next witness?

18 A. The next witness statement referred to as No. 7.42, a

19 36 year old driver from Vlasenica. The witness states

20 that the Serbs issued an ultimatum to the Muslims to hand

21 over their weapons, and this was in April 92. He was

22 arrested on 2nd June with the other man, women and

23 children from his street and he was taken to the Susica

24 camp. He states that upon arrival at the camp their

25 belongings and documents were taken by the Serbs. Nikolic

Page 734

1 Dragan was in charge of the camp, and the witness knows

2 him because he is a former working colleague of him in the

3 Alpro factory in the Vlasenica.

4 Between the 20th and 25th June his brother and

5 another man were called out by Nikolic and they were

6 severely beaten. When his brother came back he had a

7 wound at his cheek and seven of his ribs were broken.

8 Another of the witness's brothers was also severely beaten

9 several times. The witness further on states that Durmo

10 Handzic, Asim Zildzic, Esmir Smajlovic and Mirsad

11 Smajlovic were taken out by Nikolic and severely beaten.

12 Both Durmo Handzic and Asim Zildzic died as a result of

13 the beatings.

14 The witness states that when Asim Zildzic returned

15 into the hall, or was brought back into the hall, one o

16 his eyes was out of the socket. A few days later after

17 the killing of those people, the witness states that

18 Muharem Kolarevic, Dzevad Saric and Zekic were taken out.

19 The witness states that he heard then cries and some

20 shots. This witness also recalls the incident when the

21 camp commander, Dragan Nikolic, put the bayonet in the

22 mouth of one of the prisoners.

23 Q. The name of that prisoner?

24 A. I am sorry, sir?

25 Q. The name of the prisoner who he saw put the bayonet in the

Page 735

1 mouth of?

2 A. The man, the name is Arnaut Cece, "Cece" is the nickname.

3 Q. The next witness?

4 A. The next witness is the statement is referred under the

5 No. 7.13. The witness is a 43 year old construction site

6 worker from Vlasenica. He knew personally Dragan Nikolic,

7 the camp commander. During his stay into the camp the

8 witness also witnessed the beating of Durmo Handzic and

9 Asim Zildzic by Dragan Nikolic. The witness also states

10 that when Asim Zildzic was brought back he saw that one of

11 the eyes of the victim was out of the socket.

12 Further on, the witness states that Muharem Kolarevic

13 was called out by Nikolic after which a gun shot was

14 heard. This witness also states about the incident when

15 Dragan Nikolic put the bayonet in the mouth of a prisoner

16 -- the same prisoner as mentioned before.

17 Q. Thank you. The next witness?

18 A. The next witness statement referred to under the No. 7.46,

19 a 31 year old female, son of technician. This witness was

20 arrested on 24th June 1992 together with her father, th

21 sister and two children and she was taken to the Susica

22 camp. Dragan Nikolic was the commander of the camp and

23 she knew him because he was a school mate of her brother.

24 The witness was taken out one night out of the camp and

25 she was raped in a house outside the camp.

Page 736

1 Q. Then what happened? Was she then released on 27th June,

2 transported?

3 A. The witness a few days after that was released. A lot of

4 the women were transported, but some of them were not

5 allowed to go and were sent back to their homes. She was

6 one of the women who was forced to stay in Vlasenica, and

7 she only left the 15th September 1992.

8 Q. Does that the complete your summary?

9 A. This was the complete summary, sir.

10 MR. NIEMANN: I have no further questions.

11 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Judge Odio Benito,

12 you have the floor to

13 ask questions.

14 JUDGE ODIO BENITO: Thank you. (To the witness): Mr. Paepen,

15 did you personally speak with all of these witnesses?

16 A. No, I did not, your Honour.

17 Q. But you were in charge of the investigation?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. Did you speak with the witness referred as 7.1, for

20 instance?

21 A. No, I did not, your Honour.

22 Q. What about the other female witnesses? Did you speak to

23 them?

24 A. I spoke with the 7.46, I did.

25 Q. The 7.?

Page 737

1 A. 46. The last one, your Honour

2 Q. Did you ask her, this witness, what happened with her

3 sister?

4 A. Yes, your Honour, I did.

5 Q. And?

6 A. I saw also her sister. She was interrogated by my

7 colleague. They were both on the same day present. My

8 colleague interrogated her and I interrogated this

9 witness. The sister was not raped, your Honour.

10 Q. Was she physically abused or mistreated or -----

11 A. The sister was brought the same night together with the

12 witness out of the camp, but this witness said that she

13 was not raped. They have been with that man in the rooms,

14 one of the rooms, of the house where the witness had been

15 raped, but the sister said she was not raped, and she was

16 not sexually harassed.

17 Q. Let me ask you, did you know if the interrogator who

18 interviewed the witness referred as 7.1 asked her what

19 happened with her daughter-in-law and her grand-daughter

20 at the Susica camp?

21 A. Yes, your Honour. The question was asked and the witness

22 together with her daughter-in-law, her grand-daughter and

23 her grandson who was not in the camp, they managed to get

24 on a bus and they could leave Vlasenica and then to the

25 Muslim territory, your Honour.

Page 738

1 Q. The witness referred to as 7.41 ---

2 A. Yes, your Honour.

3 Q. -- you spoke about, she was 18 years old?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. She was taken to the camp with her mother and two

6 sisters. In our paper we have heard of rapes, but you di

7 not mention anything about this?

8 A. About this witness?

9 Q. Yes.

10 A. When the witness left the camp about 150 women were taken

11 off that convoy at the place called Palamic. Sometime

12 time later about 100 were liberated and could come to the

13 Bosnian territory, but about 50 of them were kept in

14 Palamic and there is no news about them. One of those 50

15 was her sister. Now the witness said that a lot of the

16 women who were there might have been raped.

17 JUDGE ODIO BENITO: Thank you very much, Mr. Paepen. No

18 further questions.

19 JUDGE RIAD: The testimony which you mentioned of 7.6 was

20 concerning a female of the age of 70 years?

21 A. Yes, your Honour.

22 Q. I did not exactly catch at the end, you said she was

23 beaten personally?

24 A. Yes, the witness states, your Honour, that at certain

25 moment she was interrogated by Dragan Nikolic in the

Page 739

1 presence also of other men, other guards, and that at that

2 interrogation she had been beaten on her hands by Dragan

3 Nikolic, sir.

4 Q. In the case of 7.46 concerning a female of 30 years old,

5 when she was taken out of the camp and being raped ----

6 A. Yes, your Honour.

7 Q. Did she mention who committed this crime?

8 A. We have, I believe, a nickname, sir, of the man who did

9 it. This name is Slidan.

10 Q. Nikolic was around?

11 A. She states that Nikolic was not part in that. They wer

12 taken out by two men, she and her sister, and a third

13 female person has been taken out by a man called Obrenovic

14 Zoran, but not Nikolic at that moment, sir.

15 JUDGE RIAD: Thank you very much.

16 JUDGE ODIO BENITO: Excuse me, may I ask a question?

17 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Yes.

18 JUDGE ODIO BENITO: Were these men under Nikolic's orders?

19 A. As far as we know, your Honour, these men were not part of

20 the regular camp guards from which we have names, but were

21 of the so-called Specialists who frequently came into the

22 camp, and which are mentioned by several witnesses as

23 taking part in beatings. These were the irregular called

24 specialists also, your Honour.

25 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Mr. Paepen, in what

Page 740

1 you have told us this

2 morning you have not made any reference to the presence of

3 children. We had the feeling there were children. Could

4 you comment on that?

5 A. Your Honour, in some of the statements it was mentioned

6 that children were present in the camp. The lady who had

7 had laisser paisser brought food to the camp, also for her

8 daughter-in-law and for her grandchild, but we have other

9 information also that women were brought there with the

10 children. However, the information we got is that they

11 stayed for a short time, two or three days, and then were

12 put on buses to Kladanj or Srpske or eventually Tuzla.

13 That means at that time the areas free territory, Muslim

14 territory.

15 Q. Yes. Well, that questions brings me to a further

16 question, Mr. Paepen. We listened to 12 or 13 witnesses

17 who were called by the Prosecution. Needless to say w

18 listened to the witnesses as attentively as possible. It

19 is not for the Tribunal to go into too many points, but

20 nevertheless it has our responsibility to clear up certain

21 matters in the absence of the defence and just for human

22 reasons we did not want to put the witnesses in a

23 difficult situation. But when there is a trial the

24 witnesses will have to respond to the questions from the

25 defence counsel.

Page 741

1 I say this because we have noted that there is some

2 contradiction in what the witnesses have said, for example

3 just to mention a few when it comes to whether children

4 were present or not, when it comes to the number of people

5 who were held in the hangar, the fact that some people

6 were maltreated and others were not, etc. We understand

7 that this is not surprising; the victims suffered and we

8 cannot expect them to be acquainted and remember every

9 detail.

10 My question is the following. As an investigator for

11 the Prosecutor's Office did you draw up an overall summary

12 note to be able to tell your office, and why not the

13 Tribunal, what the basic conditions are that everyone

14 agrees on, for example, the dates, the time period during

15 which the camps were running, the number of men and women

16 who were held there, etc? Have you drawn up such a

17 document, perhaps even just for your own use as

18 Prosecuting Counsel do, where you can say on the basis of

19 all of the testimony we have gathered we can be

20 practically sure in saying that between a given day in May

21 1992 and June 1992 there was a camp in Susica that was

22 laid out in such a such a way that probably so and so man

23 people went through it, that there were about so many

24 women there? Of course, there are considerable

25 differences. We have heard some witnesses say there were

Page 742

1 only two women there; other witnesses have said there were

2 a lot of women there. Did you go ahead with a document

3 along these lines and, if you do have one, could you make

4 it available? Perhaps if we resume, if you want to think

5 about that, maybe you could tell us how you plan to deal

6 with this concern on the part of the Judges.

7 A. Your Honour, we made after the statements and taken in

8 account information that we had from other sources, we

9 have made an analysis concerning the camp, when we can say

10 that the camp existed from the beginning of June until in

11 September, for this period September is, if I may say so,

12 the end of the major occupation of the camp, because at a

13 later stage we have some information that during visit at

14 the camp a few prisoners were still held -- and a few, it

15 is not more than 10.

16 Concerning the numbers of the female persons in the

17 camp, it is very difficult, it was very difficult to put

18 exact numbers, this is the same for the male persons,

19 because the witnesses who were available for us were taken

20 in at different dates. We have witness statements of

21 witnesses from different villages and different areas who

22 were brought. As I told, people who came from Papraca who

23 were absolutely not familiar with the people from

24 Vlasenica, and who came in, they only knew their own

25 people. They had their concerns about their own and they

Page 743

1 could not give much information about people from the

2 other area

3 Now, concerning female persons, a lot of them came in

4 the camp, stayed there for, as I told, one or two days and

5 were then moved towards the free territory. This is the

6 general, also general conclusion of most of witnesses. A

7 few women have been kept for a longer period, but most of

8 the male witnesses who were in the camp between, let us

9 say, the period of 2nd June and then transported towards

10 the camp of Batkovic, it was three days at the end of

11 June, 27th, 28th and 30th. After that period not so much

12 male persons were there any more. It is very -- it is

13 very difficult to put an exact number of the female

14 persons who were in the camp.

15 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Mr. Paepen, the

16 Tribunal would like to

17 thank you for your testimony. If you would care to

18 present an analysis and response to the last question

19 I raised, if that was agreeable to the Prosecutor's

20 office, where you spelled out everything that was common

21 to all the testimony, that is to say, where there was

22 agreement on the part of all the witnesses, I think that

23 would make things easier for the Tribunal for these

24 proceedings and for the future.

25 The Tribunal, having heard the Prosecution's

Page 744

1 questions and your answers and with your information,

2 those listening, the media, those passing on this

3 information, I think you have made it clear how difficult

4 it is for the investigators, for the Prosecutor's office,

5 to carry out proceedings on a territory that is in a state

6 of war, and where these horrible things are taking place.

7 Thank you very much, Mr. Paepen. You may leave the

8 courtroom, sir

9 (The witness withdrew)

10 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Before adjourning

11 (and we will be

12 resuming at 2.30 this afternoon) I would like to turn to

13 the Prosecutor's officer and, in particular, to

14 Miss McHenry, so you are going to be summing up -- I see

15 Mr. Niemann is rising, so let me talk to him. As I said

16 at the beginning, the Prosecutor's office is one and

17 indivisible so when it comes to the nice things we have to

18 say about it, but with regard to your concluding comments

19 that we are looking for the hearing, I would like to make

20 this clear before we break, in case you have some work to

21 do -- this is for the benefit all those listening -- we

22 are working on the basis of the indictment as admitted to

23 a Judge of this Chamber who is present in these

24 proceedings.

25 If you are planning to change your indictment partly

Page 745

1 or wholly, you know there is a special procedure under

2 Rule 50. That is what I wanted to say. We do have our

3 Rules of Procedure that cover indictments. So we are

4 going to adjourn and resume at 2.30 this afternoon.

5 (Luncheon adjournment)

6 (2.30 p.m.)

7 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Prosecuting counsel,

8 the floor is yours.

9 MISS McHENRY: Thank you, your Honour. First, I would like to

10 discuss a few preliminary matters. One is with the

11 assistance of the clerk, we would like to submit some of

12 the supporting documents for Dr. Gow's assertions that

13 I believe Judge Riad, in particular, had asked and we had

14 stated that, although we might not be able to submit every

15 potential bit of support for his evidence, we would make

16 submission of some of the important parts. That was just

17 prepared today and, as Judge Jorda looks at it, we are

18 submitting it to the Registrar at the same time and,

19 presumably, it will be translated into French as soon as

20 possible.

21 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Thank you very much,

22 Prosecution.

23 MISS McHENRY: We would also ask at this time that all the

24 documents that have been introduced in this hearing be

25 formally admitted as evidence. I believe all those

Page 746

1 documents have previously during the course of the hearing

2 been given to your Honours.

3 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] That is quite right.

4 Yes, we approve

5 that.

6 MISS McHENRY: With respect to your Honours' question

7 immediately before the break about potential amendments,

8 let me advise the court at this time the Prosecution is

9 not seeking an amendment of the indictment. This is not

10 to suggest at some future time, particularly in

11 preparation for trial after the defendant is apprehended,

12 I believe there would probably well be amendment sought at

13 that time but at this time we do not believe it necessary

14 or appropriate.

15 With respect to the last matter raised by your

16 Honours, which is a question directed at -----

17 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] So, Prosecuting

18 counsel, let me turn to

19 the Registrar before you start. Please note, Registrar,

20 that the Tribunal registers the documents provided

21 throughout the hearing as documents fully given to the

22 Tribunal so that they may be perused and used as seen

23 fit. Then, as procedural documents, please note th

24 documents submitted during the testimony of Dr. Gow. We

25 also register, we also note, that in this case against

Page 747

1 Dragan Nikolic we still have your indictment which has

2 been confirmed by Judge Odio Benito under Rule 47 of our

3 Statutes. Thank you.

4 MISS McHENRY: Your Honour, with respect to the last matter

5 that you raised immediately before the break, a question,

6 I believe, directed to Mr. Paepen which is whether or not

7 there is some sort of final analysis of sort of

8 everything. I do not believe that that there is such a

9 document existing, although during the course of my

10 argument, my closing argument, I will discuss why that is

11 and what other things there are that do exist that might

12 satisfy some of your Honour's concerns.

13 If I may proceed? Your Honours, we have heard over

14 the past five days some of the evidence against Dragan

15 Nikolic. The case is a strong and simple one; one which

16 illustrates often in frightening detail what happened. It

17 does this by being a case about individuals. Certainly,

18 it is a story of the individual witnesses who testified

19 here this week who, with great courage and with great

20 eloquence, came here and testified before the world.

21 It is hoped that the voices of these witnesses will

22 speak for other victims and serve as an aid to recovery

23 and a remembrance of some of the victims who did not

24 survive. As many of the witnesses' testimony established,

25 this is also the story of some individuals, including some

Page 748

1 Bosnian Serb individuals, who with dignity and courage

2 acted to help in some way their victims often at risk to

3 themselves

4 The individual this story is most about is Dragan

5 Nikolic; a person in an official capacity; a person with

6 responsibility over the lives of many; a person who

7 permitted others and was permitted by others to kill,

8 torture, assault and otherwise abuse detainees in the most

9 horrible of ways.

10 By speaking of individuals, I do not mean to suggest

11 that Nikolic and his crimes were not part of something

12 larger, because he was and his crimes were. What I mean

13 is that even when crimes are done as part of something

14 bigger involving other individuals, this Tribunal is about

15 individual choices and individual criminal responsibility.

16 War is tragedy. It inevitably involves suffering and

17 death. It is not, however, an activity conducted without

18 legal rules. These rules, International Humanitarian Law,

19 exist to mitigate, where possible, human suffering during

20 wartimes. These rules are universally recognised as

21 establishing the outer limits of acceptable conduct.

22 Murder, torture, inhumane treatment and the other crimes

23 committed by Dragan Nikolic at Susica camp are prohibited

24 at all times in all contexts.

25 By bringing this case and now by bringing this

Page 749

1 Rule 61 hearing, we condemn all such violations of

2 International Humanitarian Law and we put Dragan Nikolic

3 and all other perpetrators and potential perpetrators on

4 notice. No matter your position, high or low, no matter

5 how famous or unknown your crimes may be, no matter what

6 your nationality or ethnic origin, actions such as those

7 taken here violate the most basic tenants of international

8 law accepted by all nations. As such, you may b

9 prosecuted, and the efforts to bring to light your crimes,

10 and to bring you to justice, will not cease.

11 Dragan Nikolic is accused here or imprisoning more

12 than 500 civilians, of subjecting them to inhumane

13 conditions, of plundering their property, and of sending

14 many to another prison camp, where their suffering

15 continued. His is also accused of killing eight of the

16 detainees, of torturing 10 others and causing serious

17 injury or great suffering to others.

18 Dragan Nikolic was the camp commander at Susica. As

19 such, under Article 7 of our Statute, he can be held

20 culpable for both his personal participation in crimes,

21 and for his responsibility as a superior who could have

22 prevented or punished the crimes of those he supervised.

23 The evidence showed that Nikolic ruled Susica with an

24 iron hand. As he himself said to the detainees: "I am

25 your God and your law". He was at the camp almost all the

Page 750

1 time. He controlled what went on at the camp and the

2 actions of the guards. But rather than use his position

3 to protect the basic rights of the detainees, imprisoned

4 solely because they were Muslims, Nikolic permitted, nay

5 he encouraged, abuse. He permitted the guards and he

6 permitted others from outside the camp to assault, torture

7 and even kill the detainees.

8 He created, by his own example, an environment where

9 sadistic physical and mental abuse of the detainees was

10 common place. Under the law, Nikolic is thus responsible

11 for the offences at the camp without the necessity of his

12 personal participation. Additionally, however, in almost

13 all, if not all, the cases of the charges in thi

14 indictment, Nikolic is also responsible through his

15 personal participation.

16 I would like to briefly discuss the crimes charged in

17 indictment one by one. I would also like to present the

18 court with the assistance of the clerk with a chart

19 detailing which witnesses had specific testimony relevant

20 to a particular count. The chart that I am presenting may

21 not include a reference to every witness with relevant

22 testimony, but I hope it identifies the major witnesses

23 with respect to each charge.

24 By the term witnesses here, I use the term to include

25 both witnesses who have testified this past week as well

Page 751

1 as the many more witnesses who have provided written

2 statement and who will come to The Hague to testify at

3 trial. As your Honours know, the Prosecution is relying

4 on both the oral testimony and the written statements

5 previously submitted in this proceeding. There are some

6 crimes, in fact, where the Prosecution's evidence is

7 entirely in the written material.

8 What emerges from the witness who testified is a

9 ghastly picture of the crimes and of the suffering

10 experienced by the victims of those crimes. As we also

11 saw during the hearing, that suffering continues, both

12 with respect to the surviving victims, the witnesses to

13 the crimes and the families of those who did not survive.

14 Here I am going to try to summaries and synthesize

15 the various witnesses' testimony rather than repeat the

16 details of what every witness said. I do not believe it

17 is necessary, or even helpful, for me to discuss the

18 testimony of each witness. Not only is that evidenc

19 already before your Honours, more importantly, the

20 standard in this case is not proof beyond a reasonable

21 doubt or even preponderance of the evidence. This

22 proceeding is for your Honours to confirm that, taking

23 into account all the evidence and reasonable inferences to

24 be drawn, there exist reasonable grounds to believe that

25 the accused has committed the crimes charged in this

Page 752

1 indictment.

2 As stated by Judge Sidhwa, "The evaluation is to be

3 made at the pretrial stage of the proceedings, and not

4 what may turn out subsequently in the light of changing

5 facts". Later: "The evidence, therefore, need not be

6 overly convincing or conclusive; it should be adequate or

7 satisfactory to warrant the belief that the suspect has

8 committed the crimes".

9 As a concrete example of the different standard for a

10 Rule 61 proceedings as opposed to a trial, I would offer

11 the following example. If I were to go into a room filled

12 with several people and call out "Michelle", and of those

13 persons turns her head, I would suggest that there are

14 reasonable grounds to believe that the person who turned

15 her head is Michelle. I do not suggest that the evidence

16 of this is beyond a reasonable doubt, or even conclusive,

17 because there are other plausible reasons which could

18 explain what happened. I do submit, however, that it is

19 evidence sufficient for a reasonable belief.

20 Many of Dragan Nikolic's crimes were committed

21 against, and in the presence of, people who knew him and

22 his victims. Accordingly, in many cases the witnesses

23 have vivid recollections of what happened during th

24 crimes. As is natural, they often saw or heard different

25 parts of the crime, and as is natural, particularly given

Page 753

1 the conditions here, the witnesses sometimes remember

2 things differently. Indeed, it is remarkable that there

3 are not more differences.

4 But it is not necessary at this time, certainly not

5 in these proceedings, to resolve any apparent

6 inconsistencies. Although it is not necessary, or,

7 I would suggest, even appropriate to try to resolve

8 apparent inconsistencies at this stage, because your

9 Honours have raised the issue, I would like to address

10 this issue in more detail than I had originally planned.

11 First, the Prosecution does not suggest (and has

12 never meant to suggest) that it is inappropriate for your

13 Honours to note inconsistencies. It is always advisable

14 for the Prosecution to be aware of such issues and it is a

15 natural human reaction of persons to wish to resolve

16 inconsistencies, since when hearing a story one wants to

17 understand it wholly and correctly. But, of course, it

18 must be realised that there are different kinds of

19 inconsistencies.

20 Some may be the result of both the summary nature of

21 the testimony that witnesses gave and the emotional nature

22 of the testimony. It is also the case that the witnesses

23 were not asked to clarify, or not sure that there was not

24 a misunderstanding because of translation or other

25 issues.

Page 754

1 It is also the case, as I believe has been previously

2 pointed out, that the witnesses here were often at the

3 camp at very different times. Mrs. Smajlovic came at th

4 same time that many of the witnesses who testified earlier

5 in the week were on the bus leaving. Mr. Pasic was there

6 for only one night.

7 There are other issues that, just because of the

8 question involved are ones that the witness could never be

9 expected to accurately know. I would suggest that some of

10 what went on above Dragan Nikolic are some things that

11 these witnesses may well not know. I would suggest that

12 the number of the people in the camp is something that the

13 witnesses would not be expected to know. The numbers were

14 constantly changing. The conditions were such that it was

15 hard and, even in the best of circumstances, it is a

16 difficult task, certainly one that I believe I would never

17 be able to estimate.

18 We are sure, the Prosecution is sure, that it is at

19 least 500 people, and that is what the indictment charges,

20 a minimum of 500 people. We believe it was more than

21 that, several thousand, but we have only charged a minimum

22 of 500. So, I would respectfully submit that is all we

23 need to know for sure.

24 The other inconsistencies, the kind I mentioned

25 before, are the result of the fact that all humans

Page 755

1 remember and see things differently. I have never had and

2 do not know any Prosecutor who has ever had a case without

3 inconsistencies; indeed, I would be suspicious if I were

4 presented with such a case.

5 So I think there are two important questions to keep

6 in mind when thinking about such inconsistencies: (1) Do

7 they go to an essential element of the offence? If not,

8 they are much less serious and may not need to ever b

9 resolved. (2) Are they of such a character that they

10 render a witness not credible about the essential

11 elements? I would respectfully suggest that in this case

12 there are no inconsistencies whatsoever that come close to

13 rising to these levels.

14 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Yes. If I could just

15 break in for a

16 moment, just a slight break, we have a slight

17 interpretation problem.

18 (The Presiding Judge addresses Interpreters)

19 Sorry to interrupt you, Prosecuting counsel. Please go

20 on.

21 MISS McHENRY: Your Honours, for all these reasons that I

22 have just talked about, your Honours, I would notify

23 you that the Prosecution does not have the summary that

24 your Honour asked about, which is a summary that really,

25 sort of, treats everything and resolves it as something

Page 756

1 close to the final answer.

2 I will point out to your Honours that in the dossier

3 that was initially received by Judge Odio Benito (and is

4 now before your Honours) there is both an overview of

5 Vlasenica and the camp. That may answer or, at least,

6 give the Prosecution's belief as to some of the general

7 questions, and with respect to the specific counts in the

8 dossier there is also a section entitled "Allegations"

9 which tries to summarise and synthesize the various

10 witnesses' testimony -- similar to what I am going to try

11 to do in just a minute myself.

12 Your Honours, just as I will not discuss the

13 testimony of every witness for similar reasons, I will

14 not, unless your Honours desire it with respect to

15 specific count, repeat the elements of the offence which

16 Mr. Niemann previously described in his opening. I do

17 have, however, for your Honours' consideration, if you

18 desire it, copies of the Prosecution's submission on the

19 elements of the offence that were submitted to the Tadic

20 Trial Chamber. I have checked. They were previously

21 submitted and they are part of the record in Tadic. They

22 are currently being translated. My last information was

23 that the French version will be available on Wednesday.

24 I would like briefly to touch upon the jurisdictional

25 requirements common to each of the offences under Articles

Page 757

1 2, 3, and 5 of our Statute. Generally the acts committed

2 by the accused here against specific victims have given

3 rise to three separate charges: Grave breaches of the

4 Geneva Conventions under Article 2, violations of the laws

5 or customs of war under Article 3, they are specifically

6 identified as being violations described in Common Article

7 3 of the Geneva Conventions, and lastly crimes against

8 humanity under Article 5 of our Statute.

9 All of these require that there have existed an armed

10 conflict. With respect to meeting this jurisdictional

11 threshold, I direct your attention to the recent Appeal

12 Chamber's decision in the Tadic case which found that an

13 armed conflict exists whenever there is resort to armed

14 forces, armed force between States or protracted armed

15 violence between governmental authority and organised

16 armed groups, and the additional finding that an armed

17 conflict did exist in Bosnia-Herzegovina between at least

18 the period 23rd May 1992 to 31st December 1992. I note

19 that the indictment here against Dragan Nikolic fall

20 completely within that period.

21 I would also direct your attention to the testimony

22 Dr. Gow and to the testimony of all the witnesses about

23 the events occurring round Vlasenica, both of which

24 substantiate the position that an armed conflict began in

25 Bosnia-Herzegovina by early April 1992, that the conflict

Page 758

1 has continued, that the conflict in Vlasenica was closely

2 related to the hostilities occurring in other parts of

3 Bosnia-Herzegovina and, indeed, that the conflict in

4 Vlasenica was part of a larger Vlasenica military

5 campaign.

6 With respect to Article 2, as also set out by the

7 recent Appeals Chamber decision in Tadic, the conflict

8 must be shown to be international and the victims must

9 have been persons protected by the Geneva Conventions.

10 Here we have more than established reasonable grounds to

11 believe that this conflict was international.

12 First, we had Dr. Gow's testimony indicating, among

13 other things, that (1) in April and part of May there was

14 a conflict between the independent State of

15 Bosnia-Herzegovina and the SFRY; (2) that at the

16 conclusion of this period the newly constituted FRY left

17 behind a conquering army in possession of much of

18 Bosnia-Herzegovina, and (3) that the FRY continued to

19 assist the forces of the Bosnian Serbs in a variety of

20 ways.

21 Further, in this case we had testimony from the

22 witnesses from Vlasenica concerning the direct involvement

23 of the Novi Sad Corps. from Serbia. Not only did the

24 witnesses state that the Novi Sad Corps. was involved i

25 the armed takeover of Vlasenica in April and May 1992, the

Page 759

1 witnesses also established that the Novi Sad Corps.

2 provided continuing support to the local armed forces

3 after this time by leaving significant amounts of

4 equipment and weapons to the local Bosnian Serbs forces.

5 Further, as stated by the Appeal Chamber's decision,

6 International Humanitarian Law applies from the initiation

7 of such armed conflict and extends beyond the cessation of

8 hostilities until a general conclusion of peace is

9 reached.

10 Regarding whether the victims were protected persons,

11 the testimony establishes that the victims, and indeed all

12 the detainees at Susica camp, were civilians incarcerated

13 solely because of their status as Bosnian Muslims. As

14 civilians all the detainees are persons protected by the

15 Fourth Geneva Convention of 12th August 1949 relative to

16 the protection of civilian persons in times of war.

17 Turning to the Article 3 charges, the Prosecutor must

18 demonstrate that the acts or omissions of the defendant

19 violate the wars and the customs of war. The accused here

20 is charged under Article 3 with murder, torture and cruel

21 treatment. As recognised by the Appeal Court's recent

22 decision, such acts as these, described in Common Article

23 3, have been accepted as International Humanitarian Law

24 applicable in all armed conflicts regardless of

25 classification as internal or international.

Page 760

1 With respect to Article 5, crimes against humanity,

2 the acts of the accused must have been knowingly committed

3 as part of a widespread or systematic attack directed

4 against the civilian population. This has bee

5 established here by Dr. Gow's testimony concerning the

6 attack against non-Serbs in places throughout

7 Bosnia-Herzegovina, and by the witnesses' testimony

8 concerning the fate of the civilian non-Serb population in

9 and Vlasenica, and their own fate when later sent to other

10 prison camps, including be Batkovic and Doboj.

11 Among other things the testimony concerning the

12 status of non-Serbs, in particular Muslims, around

13 Vlasenica at that time included restrictions on movement,

14 restrictions on employment, restrictions on the conduct of

15 financial matters, forced deportation and the imprisonment

16 and worse of civilians.

17 Turning to the individual acts in the indictment, the

18 first two counts in the indictment are based on the

19 murders of Durmo Handzic and Asim Zildzic. Sometime

20 between 13th and 24th June 1992 these two elderly men were

21 called out of the hangar. After being called out they

22 were savagely beaten by Dragan Nikolic. During the

23 beatings Durmo Handzic was questioned about the

24 whereabouts of his son, and Asim was questioned about a

25 weapon. The men cried that they did not know the answers

Page 761

1 and they screamed in pain. They were beaten to

2 unconsciousness and water was thrown on them to revive

3 them and the beatings started again.

4 During part of this event another detainee, Mirsad

5 Smajlovic whom you heard testify yesterday was also called

6 out and beaten for a portion of the time. When the

7 beatings finally stopped, Durmo Handzic staggered back

8 into the room and Asim Zildzic, unable even to walk, was

9 dragged in by other detainees. Asim Zildzic died almos

10 immediately afterwards. The following day, after being

11 denied his last wish to be permitted to see the daylight

12 outside, Durmo Handzic also diet.

13 Count 3 of the indictment is the murder and wilful

14 killing of Mevludin Hatunic. Mrs. Smajlovic testified

15 about this crime and you have additional written

16 material. The evidence indicates that the house of

17 Mr. Hatunic had been taken over by a Serb family and

18 Mr. Hatunic made some sort of negative comment about

19 that. Dragan Nikolic found out about the comment and

20 decided to punish Mevludin Hatunic for daring to make such

21 a comment. The punishment was death. Over the next day

22 or so Mr. Hatunic was repeatedly beaten by Dragan Nikolic

23 and he died from his injuries.

24 Count 4 to 7 of the indictment are based on an event

25 involving four detainees: Dzevard Saric, Muharem

Page 762

1 Kolarevic, Musa Zekic, Rasid Ferhatbegovic. A number of

2 witnesses have evidence about these murders, but perhaps

3 the most chilling testimony came from Hasim Ferhatovoic

4 who was called out during the incident and buried the

5 victims and Ibro Osmanovic who was almost killed himself.

6 The evidence reveals that late one night Mr. Saric,

7 who had frequently been beaten by Dragan Nikolic before,

8 was called out, as was Muharem Kolarevic. Some soldiers

9 who were friends of Dragan Nikolic had come to the camp

10 and they with Nikolic's acquiescence and participation led

11 this incident. Detainees remaining in the hangar could

12 hear beating, yelling and then some shots. Hasim

13 Ferhatovoic and his brother Alija called Gitza were called

14 out of the hangar, and when they found the two men both o

15 whom appeared to be dead. Hasim and his brothers were

16 ordered to move the bodies to another location and they

17 did that. While they were still outside Musa Zekic,

18 another detainee, was then ordered to come out of the

19 hangar, and he too was killed.

20 When the two brothers Hasim and Gitza were ordered to

21 bring the body of Musa Zekic to the location where the

22 other bodies were, it was discovered that Muharem

23 Kolarevic was no longer there. Apparently, as it later

24 turned out, he had been critically wounded rather than

25 dead and he had managed to crawl some distance away before

Page 763

1 dying. In any event, because Muharem Kolarevic could not

2 be immediately found, the soldiers raised a cry of

3 escape. They then, accompanied by some police officers,

4 went into the hangar and made the accusation that an

5 escape attempt had been made.

6 Ibro Osmanovic made the mistake of drawing attention

7 to himself by slightly raising his head. He was picked as

8 a person who tried to escape. One of the guards who had

9 been a friend of his intervened on his behalf, and he was

10 not taken and Rasid Ferhatbegovic was selected in his

11 stead. Immediately after being taken out Rasid

12 Ferhatbegovic was killed.

13 Count 8 charges the murder of Ismet Dedic.

14 Mrs. Smajlovic testified about his death and there is

15 additional written evidence. Ismed Dedic was killed by

16 being beaten to death by Dragan Nikolic. The witnesses do

17 not know why Nikolic did this. They only know that he did

18 it.

19 Count 9 is the inhuman treatment of Galib Music. B

20 way of clarification with this count I would like to add

21 that although the evidence now indicates that Galib Music

22 died from this mistreatment, because the state of the

23 evidence regarding proof of death was not as clear when

24 the indictment was first returned, Dragan Nikolic is not

25 here accused of the death of Mr. Music, but only of

Page 764

1 inhumane treatment.

2 Galib Music had the misfortune of having been a

3 neighbour of Dragan Nikolic before the war, and he was

4 accused of having been a supporter of the SDA, the Muslim

5 party. Galib Music, a man in his 60s, was called out by

6 Dragan Nikolic, and then while outside the witnesses could

7 hear screams and Nikolic yelling. Sometime after

8 Mr. Music was brought back to the hangar he died from his

9 injuries.

10 Counts 10 and 11 concern the assault Fikret Arnaut,

11 called Cice. Cice was repeatedly, sometimes daily,

12 assaulted by about Dragan Nikolic, often in the hangar in

13 front other detainees

14 Count 10 is based upon a particular incident where,

15 as part of trying to obtain information or punish him,

16 Dragan Nikolic forced Cece Arnaut to put back his head and

17 Dragan Nikolic then put his bayonet down the throat of

18 Cice, cutting him in the process.

19 Count 11, charging great suffering, is based on the

20 repeated beatings that Nikolic inflicted on Cice.

21 Count 12 is the assault of Mubin Music. The evidence

22 for this count is contained in the written material.

23 Dragan Nikolic accused Mubin Music of knowing where a

24 weapon, a Kalashnikov, was. In order to find out if Mubi

25 Music knew where the weapon was and to force him to tell

Page 765

1 if he did, Nikolic assaulted Mubin Music by threatening

2 him and also putting a bayonet down his throat.

3 Counts 13 and 14 are the torture and inhuman

4 treatment of Suad Machmutovic, a man Nikolic accused of

5 having a vehicle with something on it resembling a

6 Croatian flag. Suad Machmutovic testified during this

7 hearing finishing yesterday morning. He told you about

8 his beatings when Dragan Nikolic hit with a police baton,

9 kicked him after he had fallen to the ground, beatings

10 where he lost consciousness and beatings from which he

11 still feels the affects.

12 In addition to the physical beatings, Nikolic, while

13 ordering Suad Machmutovic to provide information about a

14 neighbour, put a cocked pistol in his mouth and pulled the

15 trigger. Suad Machmutovic realised he was still alive.

16 He realised the gun had not been loaded.

17 Counts 15, 16 and 17 concern a series of three

18 assaults committed by Dragan Nikolic and others against

19 Sead Ambeskovic. Mr. Ambeskovic testified here earlier in

20 the week. He was beaten the first day he arrived at

21 Susica camp with axes, bars and rifle butts, and he was

22 beaten the next day again with iron bars and other

23 instruments. During the second beating he lost serval

24 teeth and had his ribs broken. Two days later he was

25 beaten again, this time with a baseball bat.

Page 766

1 Counts 18 is the inhuman treatment of Redjo Cakisic,

2 another witness who testified during this hearing. He was

3 beaten when he first arrived at Susica and again about 10

4 days later. On the second occasion Dragan Nikolic calle

5 out Mr. Cakisic and brought him to two solders. Dragan

6 Nikolic presented Mr. Cakisic to the soldiers and said:

7 "Here, I have brought you something for dinner." The

8 soldiers then bear Mr. Cakisic so badly that he could not

9 stand up for seven days. While he was being beaten, while

10 he was lying on the ground screaming and moaning, Dragan

11 Nikolic continued his normal routine in the guard house

12 some five metres away.

13 The last count based upon an individual victim was

14 the causing of great suffering to Hasna Cakisic. Most of

15 the evidence supporting this count is contained in the

16 written material. At the time she was brought to Susica

17 Hasna Cakisic was 68 years old. She was at Susica camp

18 for almost one month. While there she was brought out for

19 interrogation serval times because Dragan Nikolic wanted

20 to know where her son was, and during the interrogation

21 she was slapped in the face and hit with the baton on her

22 hand.

23 Counts 20, your Honours, is the unlawful confinement

24 of civilians and all the testimony attests to this. Count

25 21 concerns the appropriation of property. The refers to

Page 767

1 property including jewellery, money, watches, that the

2 victims of Susica were forced to turn over and never

3 received back.

4 Count 22 is the transfer of civilians from Susica

5 camp to Batkovic camp. Every male witness who testified

6 reported that the men from Susica camp were transferred to

7 Batkovic where they often remained detained for another 12

8 to 13 months.

9 Count 23 charges Dragan Nikolic with committing

10 crime against humanity by participating in the persecution

11 of more than 500 civilians by maintaining the camp in

12 which Muslims and other non-Serb people were detained

13 based on the fact that they were Muslims.

14 Count 24, the final count, charges Dragan Nikolic

15 with a crime against humanity by participating in inhuman

16 acts against the more than 500 detainees at Susica, by

17 endangering their health and welfare by providing

18 inadequate food, by providing living conditions failing to

19 meet even basic minimal standards, and by creating an

20 atmosphere where the detainees feared for their personal

21 safety.

22 This count is based upon the recognition that every

23 person who was at Susica camp, even those themselves never

24 beaten, were still the victims of inhuman treatment. Day

25 after day these people were crowded on to a concrete

Page 768

1 floor, men, women, children, all together, no place to

2 sleep, almost nothing to eat, no place to bathe, no place

3 even to go to the bathroom. Every day these witnesses had

4 to think about whether or not the next victim to fall prey

5 to Dragan Nikolic, the next victim to be tortured or

6 killed, might be them.

7 This, your Honours, is the indictment. The evidence

8 here more than establishes reasonable grounds to believe

9 that the accused Dragan Nikolic committed all of these

10 violations of International Humanitarian Law. I therefore

11 ask your Honours to confirm all counts of the indictment

12 and to issue an international arrest warrant for the

13 arrest of Dragan Nikolic.

14 If your Honours do confirm all or a portion of thi

15 indictment, I would then ask for the opportunity to detail

16 the Prosecution's efforts to gain custody over Dragan

17 Nikolic, efforts which have been unsuccessful due to the

18 failure of the Bosnian Serb administration in Pale to take

19 appropriate action and arrest Dragan Nikolic. At that

20 later time we would respectfully suggest that referral to

21 the Security Council is appropriate.

22 Your Honours, that is the conclusion of my

23 presentation and, unless you have any questions, thank you

24 very much.

25 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] On the last point,

Page 769

1 Prosecuting Counsel,

2 may I take it, along with my colleagues in the Tribunal,

3 that you are blaming the refusal to co-operate on the part

4 of a State, you are charging the lack of co-operation, you

5 are asking that we take note of that and that the matter

6 be referred to the Security Council? So you are referring

7 to a State or to States?

8 MISS McHENRY: Your Honour, I am referring to a State as

9 defined in our rules of procedure which state: A State as

10 defined is a State member or non-member of the United

11 Nations or a self-proclaimed entity de facto exercising

12 governmental functions whether recognised as a State or

13 not.

14 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Yes, fine. That was

15 the answer I wanted

16 you to give, so that we be certain that that is the

17 request that you were putting to the Tribunal. The second

18 comment I should like to make, by your leave, but I would

19 like to hear what you have to say, having thus made your

20 statement you consider that some of the major parts of the

21 indictment, should the indictment be approved in it

22 entirety. Under Rule 61C once the Tribunal has confirmed

23 the indictment the Chamber will ask the Prosecution to

24 read out the relevant parts and to give an account of the

25 efforts made to gain custody. To my mind and my

Page 770

1 colleagues' minds that means that when we hand down our

2 decision either we will confirm the indictment in its

3 entirety or will confirm it only in part, but subsequently

4 you will have to read out the relevant parts of the

5 indictment. If we can confirm it is in its entirety, I

6 take it that you might agree that the Tribunal would read

7 that indictment, but that way you would not have to

8 re-read what you have told us today. I would like to hear

9 your view.

10 MISS McHENRY: Your Honour, I am in accord with you that that

11 is what the Rules set out with respect to technically who

12 -- I think it would be fine for your Honours to read it

13 on our behalf and we would welcome that, in fact.

14 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Even were it not

15 confirmed entirely, we

16 could still stick to that procedure.

17 MISS McHENRY: Yes, your Honour. I agree with you there also.

18 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] These procedural

19 issues, turning to those

20 listening to us, this is an international jurisdiction,

21 and we have to abide by international law. We want to set

22 an example and we do have to respect our own rules. Each

23 judicial step we take is a novelty for the Prosecution as

24 well as for the Judges.

25 I would like to hear your view on another matter.

Page 771

1 There is all the efforts that will have been deployed in

2 respect of the confirmation by Judge Odio Benito. Have

3 you provided us with the proof of the efforts? Let m

4 make this clear, one of the purposes of this procedure is

5 to make public -- that is why this is public -- the

6 elements of the indictment against Dragan Nikolic, so to

7 make these well known and also to deliver an international

8 arrest warrant if we are convinced it is appropriate. But

9 the Prosecutor's office has to tell us that the efforts

10 have been made in terms of serving the indictment, and

11 telling Dragan Nikolic that these proceedings are under

12 way. So, do we have a document showing that these efforts

13 have all been made or would you rather sum them up briefly

14 now?

15 MISS McHENRY: Your Honour, as I understand the Rules, after

16 your Honours have confirmed the indictment, under the

17 Rules, the Prosection, but I think it would be the

18 Prosecution could ask that the Trial Chamber do it on its

19 behalf, a reading, in effect, shall describe the efforts

20 made to have the arrest warrant served.

21 This morning, your Honours, the Prosecution has asked

22 the Registrar to submit to your Honours the Prosecutor's

23 application that the indictment be submitted to the Trial

24 Chamber, which includes an accounting of the efforts made

25 by the Prosecution to have Dragan Nikolic arrested and to

Page 772

1 inform him of the charges against him. The supporting

2 documents have also, I believe, been referred to your

3 Honours. They are in both French and English.

4 I would suggest that it is probably just technically

5 more in keeping with the Rules to do it at the hearing in

6 which your Honours indicate which, if any, portions of the

7 indictment -- I have it in front of me if your Honours

8 would like me to describe such efforts at the presen

9 time?

10 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Maybe we can do that

11 at the hearing where

12 we will be handing our decision. I will give you the

13 floor on that occasion. You will go into the elements

14 that would leave us to believe that you have done your

15 utmost in terms of the serving the indictment, and either

16 we will withdraw and deliberate, or whatever, we will take

17 the decision then as to whether an international arrest

18 warrant is appropriate. It may seem a bit lengthy, but we

19 do want all these listening to us to understand what is

20 involved. Do you have anything you would care to add?

21 MISS McHENRY: Yes, your Honour. With all due respect, and

22 I do not mean to suggest for one minute that your Honours

23 would not find that everything that we have done, that we

24 have not done our utmost. I do not read the Rules to

25 indicate that you are required to confirm the indictment

Page 773

1 to pass on the efforts made by the Prosecution, although

2 it does appear that your Honours would have to do that

3 under 61E in order to notify the Security Council.

4 So, it is a sort of technical requirement because, we

5 are assuming your Honours confirm all or a portion of the

6 indictment, we do suggest that referral to a Security

7 Council is appropriate. I would be asking your Honours to

8 find that the failure to effect personal service was due

9 in whole or in part to a failure or a refusal of a State

10 to co-operate with the Tribunal. That is, in fact, why

11 I asked the Registrar this morning to make you had all the

12 supporting documentation.

13 THE PRESIDING JUDGE: [Original in French] Yes, we have taken

14 note of that. That is

15 quite true. The hearing relating to Rule 61 and th

16 proceedings against Dragan Nikolic is closed. The

17 Tribunal will be make its decision public, Friday 20th, at

18 11 o'clock.

19 (The proceedings adjourned)