1 Friday, 18th June, 1999
2 (Open session)
3 (The accused entered court)
4 --- Upon commencing at 9.34 a.m.
5 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours.
6 This is case number IT-95-14/2-T, the Prosecutor versus
7 Dario Kordic and Mario Cerkez.
8 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Nice, before you begin,
9 there's one matter which I want to deal with,
10 administrative matter, concerning the calendar which
11 was handed in yesterday. If anybody wants to make a
12 representation about that, they should do so as soon as
14 Secondly, I ought to make it clear that it
15 cannot be a final calendar because it is subject to the
16 requirements of the other cases before the Trial
17 Chamber. But it's of a provisional nature, and you
18 should work upon the basis of it. But as I say, it may
19 be subject to change.
20 MR. NICE: Thank you very much.
21 Before the first witness is called, there is
22 an issue about the level of protection, but possibly
23 that could be dealt with in private session rather than
24 troubling, at the moment, going into full closed
1 JUDGE MAY: Yes.
2 (Private session)
13 page 4193 redacted private session
13 page 4194 redacted private session
9 (Open session)
10 (The witness entered court)
11 THE REGISTRAR: The pseudonym for the next
12 witness is pseudonym I.
13 JUDGE MAY: Yes. Let the witness make the
14 solemn declaration.
15 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will
16 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the
18 JUDGE MAY: If you would like to take a
20 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
21 WITNESS: WITNESS I
22 Examined by Mr. Nice:
23 [Witness answers through interpreter]
24 Q. For the duration of these proceedings, you
25 will be known as Witness I. Will you please look at
1 the piece of paper in front of you and confirm that
2 that is your full name?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Witness I, were you born in 1973, and did
5 you, before the conflict, live in Gornja Rovna?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Looking at the plan on the ELMO to your
8 right, but please don't dislodge it, is it the case
9 that Gornja Rovna is a village in two parts, Rovna and
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Were you an ABiH soldier and a member of the
13 anti-tank BiH platoon deployed in the area of Pezici
14 and Kruscica to fight against the HVO?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. You now live elsewhere?
17 A. That's right.
18 Q. On the 26th/27th of January of 1993, was
19 there an attack on the villages of Gornja Rovna and
20 Kovacevac by the HVO?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. At that time, were you in the village
23 yourself, or were you elsewhere?
24 A. No, I was not in the village. I was in the
25 area of the Travnik municipality, because at that time,
1 we were defending ourselves from the Serbian
2 Montenegrin aggressors.
3 Q. Did you learn of the attack, either the same
4 day or subsequently, and from what people in the
5 village told you about it?
6 A. I learned at the front line, near Travnik,
7 that my village was attacked. I learned that through
8 the radio. Then we left the front line in Travnik and
9 came back to the village on the 2nd of February, 1993.
10 That is when I learned what had happened in the
12 Q. At the time of the attack, were there any or
13 many men of military age and position to defend the
15 A. Only about ten people remained in the
16 village; that is, ten who would be able to defend it.
17 The rest of them went to the front line in Travnik,
18 Maglaj, and so on; Doboj. Most people were at the
19 front lines facing the Serbian aggressors.
20 Q. In the course of this attack, is it the case
21 that no villager was killed but some houses and stables
22 were burned?
23 A. Yes, several houses and barns were torched in
24 the village, but there were no losses.
25 Q. Before that attack, had there been troop
1 movements that you subsequently connected to the
2 attack, troop movements by the HVO?
3 A. Look, before this conflict, I absolutely did
4 not believe that the HVO would attack us, and if I were
5 now to look back at it, somebody perhaps would have
6 told me that we would be attacked. For instance, on
7 the way from Busovaca to my village, I had to pass
8 several HVO checkpoints before I arrived in the
9 village. They checked what was being brought into the
10 village, and it wasn't just about the weapons. They
11 even checked the flour you were bringing in, to see
12 whether there were weapons hidden in there.
13 Q. On the 15th of April of 1993, did you notice
14 troop movements in the area of the Hotel Ribnjak, where
15 there was a military base?
16 A. Yes, as early as April 15, it was the Serb
17 army celebrating the day of the army, and there were --
18 the HVO was -- there were celebrations in the Motel
19 Ribnjak, and then we saw them massing their troops, and
20 we also saw some other people whom we had not seen
22 Q. How were they dressed?
23 A. They were dressed in camouflage uniforms with
24 the HVO insignia.
25 Q. On that night, were you on the front lines at
1 Kruscica, close to Vitez, when the attack occurred?
2 A. This was not a front line. This was just a
3 guard. We were keeping guard around the village of
4 Kruscica. In other words, our platoon was tasked with
5 providing security for the people who lived in
6 Kruscica. So I was in a part above Kruscica, called
8 Q. From there, did you have visibility over to
9 your own village of Rovna and Pezici?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Were you able to see the attack, the torching
12 of houses and so on, as it occurred?
13 A. Yes. It was around 6.00 when you could see
14 that houses and barns were on fire and that there was
15 shooting going on around there.
16 Q. About 6.00 in the morning?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. You were captured with a colleague by
19 soldiers in camouflage uniforms with HVO patches?
20 A. Yes.
21 MR. NICE: Just to assist the Chamber at this
22 stage, although I hope to cover the text in the
23 summary, I'm going to be leading material that's more
24 detailed from a witness statement, if that will help
25 the Defence.
1 Q. Were you taken to Zabrdze, near Kruscica --
2 and it may not be shown on our map -- with your hands
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Then to the village of Gornji Veceriska,
6 which the Chamber can see to the top left of the
7 screen, first to a house and then to a school building?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Within the school, did HVO soldiers and
10 civilians provoke you and beat you?
11 A. Yes, throughout this time.
12 Q. Was there a man nicknamed Cica, full name
13 Maros Jozo, who used an automatic rifle to fire into
14 the room where you were detained, above your heads,
15 later putting the rifle against your head and asking
16 you questions, threatening a burst of gunfire should he
17 pull the trigger?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. The following day, did soldiers threaten to
20 liquidate you? Were you tied up again, blindfolded,
21 taken outside and forced, despite the blindfolds, to
22 get on to a tractor or its trailer, being sworn at in
23 offensive terms, using the word "balija," and hit on
24 the head?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Taken by the tractor to another location,
2 were you then forced into the trunk of a car, with a
3 colleague of yours forced by rifle butts to join you in
4 the trunk, you then being taken to an unknown
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. At that destination, were you forced into a
8 hole in the ground down which you climbed by an iron
9 stepladder, the hole being about half a metre wide and
10 five metres deep, having water, smelling as if a
11 toilet, at the bottom of it?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. Was the accommodation such that you and the
14 one other person who was with you could only be there
15 if one of you stood in the water and one of you stood
16 on the ladder?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Did you change positions, you and he, from
19 time to time, until you were called out by soldiers, or
20 a soldier, taken to a barracks some 500 metres away and
21 into an office where you were interrogated by a
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Of what military group was that soldier?
25 A. HVO.
1 Q. Any particular part of the HVO, as you
2 understood it?
3 A. Yes. In my view, he was some security
4 officer with the HVO.
5 Q. Did there come a time in the interrogation
6 when another soldier knocked on the door, asking if he
7 could go to that funeral, and asking if you were a
8 balija, being told by the interrogating officer that
9 you were, and that the man could go freely, which led
10 to that man beating you with boots to your body for
11 some 15 minutes, and with fists, while you were
12 kneeling against the wall?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Was your head then placed, under instruction,
15 on a desk, and was your head hit on that desk several
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Being stopped when the leading officer said
19 you had had enough and that there could be further
20 beating later, the man who had conducted the beating
21 telling you you would not leave the place alive?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. The interrogating officer offered you a
24 cigarette, which you accepted. He told you that you
25 would be executed, gave you another cigarette, and had
1 you taken away to a cell or place -- I beg your
2 pardon -- back to the hole, where you met your
3 colleague who had been with you in the hole before,
4 that colleague telling you that he also had been beaten
5 and that he also had been told he would be executed?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. You decided to stick together, insofar as you
8 could, to fight it out. Did you spend that night, I
9 think, in the hole in the ground, expecting to be
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. So that the next day, when you were taken
13 from the hole, you said goodbye to each other but were
14 in fact not executed, of course, but taken to a bus
15 bearing the Red Cross sign in order to deceive the BiH?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. You asked where you were, and you were told
18 that you were in Stojkovici, which is near to Novi
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Would you please, if you can see it on the
22 map that's on the overhead projector on your right,
23 just move the map? Can you look at the map to your
24 right, please, Witness I? If you move it so that we
25 can find both Novi Travnik and Stojkovici.
1 A. Stojkovici (indicating).
2 Q. Can you move it so that it's in --
3 A. Stojkovici.
4 Q. And down a bit. There you are. Thank you
5 very much.
6 You were told that's where you were, but were
7 you then told you were going to Kaonik camp, and were
8 you indeed taken to Kaonik camp, being introduced to
9 the commander, Aleksovski, wearing an HVO patch, who at
10 that stage laughed and was provocative?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Taken to a cell, where you were not allowed
13 to use the mattress, by now being in your fourth day of
14 captivity, were you provided no food and you had only
15 eaten about twice in the four days?
16 A. I'm sorry, I can't understand the language
17 they are talking. I mean I do understand the language,
18 but there's something wrong.
19 Q. Is there something wrong with the language or
20 with the interpretation or with the quality of the
22 A. No. Madam, you are not interpreting it
23 rightly. I don't know if you're Ms. or Mrs. I don't
24 know English enough. But there was a mattress. It's
25 not true that we did not have some mattresses. And you
1 seem to be speaking Croatian, and I'm not really
2 conversant in it.
3 MR. NICE: I think the solution is for me to
4 go a little more slowly and to go for shorter
6 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Nice, as far as paragraph 6
7 is concerned, we heard yesterday evidence about this
8 and we've heard evidence before.
9 MR. NICE: Yes.
10 JUDGE MAY: So it can be taken relatively
12 MR. NICE: Thank you.
13 Q. Witness I, in light of what you've heard the
14 Presiding Judge say, we are going to deal much more
15 summarily now with the remainder of your captivity.
16 Were you beaten regularly?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. To such an extent that you, at one stage,
19 gave up and preferred to die?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Were you taken, despite the beatings, on
22 forced trench digging?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Again to such an extent that at one stage you
25 asked to have your arms broken as the only method to
1 avoid your being taken trench digging anymore?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Were you aware of some 26 people, who went
4 trench digging, who never returned?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Were efforts made not to beat you about the
7 face, apparently for fear of discovery of mistreatment
8 by the Red Cross?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. In the course of the beatings and trench
11 diggings, were you interrogated from time to time about
12 your village?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Did you know that it would be dangerous to
15 acknowledge having come from Rovna or Pezici --
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. -- because of the problems the HVO had had
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. When people were killed trench digging, were
21 other prisoners compelled to sign a statement saying
22 that the deaths had been caused by the ABiH?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Eventually, were you registered with the Red
25 Cross on the 24th of April?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. But even to the Red Cross, were you unable to
3 tell the truth because of mistrust of the interpreter
4 who was accompanying the Red Cross?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. Following Red Cross intervention, did
7 Aleksovski take you to a dispensary one day because the
8 Red Cross had said you had to receive some treatment?
9 A. Yes, he did. He took me to the outpatient
10 clinic in Busovaca.
11 Q. Did the treatment provide no relief for the
12 condition you were in?
13 A. No. They refused to examine me when he told
14 them where I had come from.
15 Q. Were you at one stage from the prison moved
16 to a hangar with 60 prisoners whom you found to be in
17 an awful condition of malnourishment and dirt?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Later, were you obliged to do various other
20 works for the HVO and their guards, including cutting
21 their grass and planting their potatoes?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Did you hear the sounds of other beatings
24 throughout your time in the prison?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Did you see signs of the Red Cross being kept
2 away by Aleksovski from cells that held somebody who
3 may have been beaten?
4 A. I don't quite understand. I don't know if
5 you are interpreting it wrongly. Will you please
6 repeat the question?
7 Q. Probably my mistake on this occasion, trying
8 to do things too quickly.
9 There was one occasion when a Red Cross
10 official asked about a cell numbered 4 which was
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. The Red Cross didn't go into that cell?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. Who had been in that cell?
16 A. There was an Arab who had been captured at
17 Pucarevo or, rather, Novi Travnik.
18 Q. Eventually, did the commission of the ABiH
19 and HVO attend at the prison to offer exchange, you
20 saying that you would reject that, if they hadn't
21 managed to effect your release already, and that you
22 would wait for the Red Cross?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. You were eventually exchanged in June of
25 1993? I beg your pardon. No. What was the date of
1 your release?
2 A. On the 19th of June, 1993.
3 Q. Had you even been able to inform your family,
4 in the meantime, that you were still alive?
5 A. No. Only after I came out, I learned that my
6 village was under assault of blockade and that I could
7 not get there, so that after I spent two months in
8 Zenica, and then I came back to the village again.
9 Q. Paragraph 8. During your time in the prison,
10 first, did you see anything of a man called Kordic?
11 A. No.
12 Q. Did you hear anything about a man called
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. By whom was he mentioned?
16 A. Yes, in the camp he was mentioned, a number
17 of people ranging from the warden, Aleksovski, to those
18 guards who were there in the camp.
19 Q. How did they refer to him?
20 A. Well, they referred to him as the boss, as
21 the chief, as to someone who had the last say and the
22 final say in the area. I heard someone refer to him as
23 "Colonel" and things like that.
24 Q. How did Aleksovski speak of him?
25 A. I was once in the passage. I was sweeping
1 the passage in the camp, and Aleksovski and Stipo
2 Andrijesevic were standing in the passage. Stipo
3 Andrijesevic was one of the camp guards. They were
4 talking, and they were talking about what they had been
5 doing during the Easter holidays spent with Kordic, and
6 there was a corriga, a bullfighter, and how they
7 knocked their eggs, and how Stipo Andrijesevic had the
8 privilege of knocking his egg against Kordic's.
9 Q. In Aleksovski's conversation, could you tell
10 anything about the order of superiority between
11 Aleksovski and Kordic?
12 MR. SAYERS: At this point, Your Honour, I
13 have to object. I think what Mr. Nice is seeking to
14 have this witness do is offer his conclusions and
15 speculations about what he overheard. I think he
16 should be asked what he overheard, and the inferences
17 to be drawn from that are matters for the Trial
18 Chamber, not for the witness. Thank you.
19 JUDGE MAY: Perhaps you can ask the witness
20 what he heard and what conclusions he drew.
21 MR. NICE: Yes.
22 Q. Witness I, what did you hear, and what
23 conclusions did you draw?
24 A. Well, the conclusion from that conversation
25 between Aleksovski and Andrijasevic, I concluded that
1 Kordic was the first man with regard to everything in
3 Q. Was there a particular conversation you heard
4 about Mt. Busovaca, the corridor that leads to Gornji
6 A. This was also at the time when I was in the
7 camp down there at Kaonik. Something happened that I
8 did not know much about at that time, but every two or
9 three days I would be going to the barracks where the
10 HVO intervention platoon was quartered. There were
11 about 40 of them, and with a couple of other prisoners,
12 I made their beds and cleaned -- swept those rooms they
13 slept in.
14 Then one day I went there and saw that they
15 were gone, so we made the beds and left again. And I
16 saw that they were fewer in number than before and that
17 only six of them were there in the barracks. They
18 seemed to be quite indignant about something. Judging
19 by the way in which they talked, the language they
20 used, one could assume that they had suffered some
21 losses. So we were doing whatever we were ordered to
22 do by them, and they talked, how they had suffered
23 losses at the Busovacke staje, and cursing Kordic's
24 mother, and Kordic, for pursuing erroneous policies,
25 and things like that.
1 MR. NICE: Your Honour, I don't think that
2 the --
3 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, Mr. Nice,
5 MR. NICE: I'm so sorry.
6 Your Honour, I don't think the Chamber yet
7 has aerial views of Kaonik before it in this case.
8 JUDGE MAY: I think we had some yesterday.
9 MR. NICE: Had them yesterday? I see. These
10 ones, yes. In which case, then, I needn't trouble with
11 plans, unless the plans that I've got are going to be
12 more helpful. Have you seen them? I don't know if
13 counsel have seen them yet, but if they're better,
14 they're available. I don't need to trouble us with
15 them otherwise.
16 I would ask the chamber to look at 1869,
17 please, if that could go on the ELMO. It's a
19 Q. What does this show?
20 A. This is a photograph of the interior of the
21 Kaonik camp, the part in which I spent a major part of
22 my time in detention.
23 Q. The cells, how big?
24 A. Well, they were about two by perhaps four
25 metres. Something like that.
1 Q. How many people?
2 A. Well, it depended on the number of
3 detainees. At first, when we were about 250 to 300,
4 there would be 20 of us to a cell, and then -- it
5 depended. Some would be released or taken away
6 elsewhere, and then there would be less of us to a
7 cell. The minimum number of men to a cell was four.
8 Q. Were you allowed to eat outside your cells?
9 A. Yes, we ate outside the cells. There was a
10 kind of table set up in the passage.
11 Q. Was it in that position that you were able to
12 see the condition of other people when you heard about
13 what had happened to them?
14 A. Yes.
15 MR. NICE: One other plan or map to be put
16 in, which is 2043.
17 Q. Does this show places that you were taken to
18 for trench digging?
19 A. Yes.
20 MR. NICE: Your Honour, I shan't trouble with
21 other maps, including the hand-drawn maps of the
22 witness. If they haven't yet been distributed to
23 Defence counsel, I'm certainly happy for them to see
24 them as part of the witness's statement.
25 Q. Following your release, did you visit or
1 indeed return to your home village?
2 A. Yes. I said it already, I went back after
3 two months. I crossed the mountains and reached my
5 Q. Was there a communications centre there?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Did that communications centre have equipment
8 capable of picking up radio traffic in the vicinity?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. What was its range, to your knowledge?
11 A. It was up to two kilometres, from what I know
12 about it.
13 Q. Were you handed a tape?
14 A. Do you mean had it been -- was it handed over
15 to me? I don't understand.
16 Q. Yes.
17 A. When I went to that communications centre,
18 there was a colleague of mine working there, or rather
19 my neighbour, and he let me hear a tape telling about
20 events during the attacks on my village between the
21 16th and 20th of April. And there was a
22 conversation --
23 Q. Yes, I just want you to tell us, please, the
25 A. Right, yes. Well, this dialogue, that
1 dialogue took place in codes: Puma 1, Puma 2. Puma 1
2 was -- no, Puma 2 was the one who was carrying out the
3 orders of Puma 1, and the conversation was about
4 attacking my village.
5 Q. What did you hear on the tape?
6 A. Well, it was about the attack on my village.
7 In the end, Puma 1 ordered Puma 2 to attack the centre
8 of the village. The latter one tried to, but did
9 not -- really fell short of the plan, and he's
10 reporting to Puma 1. And then Puma 1 orders him to
11 attack the upper part of the village, and he also tries
12 to do it, and again reports that he can't. Then Puma 1
13 orders him once again to conduct the attack, and the
14 other one answers -- apparently he is quite irritated
15 about the whole matter, and he says something about,
16 "Kordic, fuck your mother, you come here and take
18 I apologise for the language I use, but I'm
19 just transmitting what I heard.
20 Q. In the course of Puma 2's rejection of the
21 suggestion that he should do it, had he given any
22 explanation of why he couldn't do it?
23 A. Puma 2 said to Puma 1, "We can't do anything
24 here because every tree is a balija."
25 Q. Did you recognise either of the voices on the
2 A. No, I wouldn't able to recognise either of
3 the two until I finally -- I mean, it finally dawned on
4 me that one of the participants in the conversation was
5 Kordic, and the other one, the person who was attacking
6 the village.
7 Q. Did you know Kordic at that time? Did you
8 know of him?
9 A. I did not know him in person, but I heard him
10 and saw him in the media, because he was a public
11 figure, a media figure -- the media figure in so-called
13 Q. What did you understand from the media
14 transmissions was his role in either political or
15 military life, or both?
16 A. His role, as I saw it -- and again, I repeat
17 that this is only my opinion -- I think that he had
18 both a military and political role.
19 Q. The result of what happened to you in the
20 camps, and when trench digging and so on, have you been
21 left with some medical conditions?
22 A. Yes, I'm still suffering from some of the
23 consequences of that.
24 Q. Thank you very much. You'll be asked some
25 further questions.
1 Cross-examined by Mr. Sayers:
2 [Witness answered through interpreter]
3 Q. Witness, my name is Steve Sayers, and I'll be
4 asking you some questions on behalf of Mr. Kordic.
5 A. Very well.
6 Q. We speak a different language, and so you
7 have to leave some time for interpretation. I'll try
8 to make my questions clear. If they're not, you just
9 tell me, and I'll make sure they are clear; is that all
11 Now, as I understand it, Witness I, you've
12 spent five days with the Prosecutor's investigators.
13 November the 26th, 1997; is that correct?
14 A. I'm sorry, I did not understand the
16 Q. You gave a statement, I believe, to the
17 investigators of this Tribunal --
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. -- and I think that you signed it on the 11th
20 of January, 1998. Do you remember that?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. That was the product of four days of
23 discussions with the investigators: the 26th of
24 November, 1997, and the next day, the 27th of November,
25 1997; the 10th of January, 1998; and then the day that
1 you signed the statement, January 11th, 1998. Is that
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. All right. And the interpreter in that
5 interview was Emina Kaknjo; do you remember that?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. And then you signed another statement on the
8 5th of November, 1998, when you were asked by the
9 investigator to come back to the subject and highlight
10 certain topics. Do you remember that?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. That statement given on November the 5th,
13 1998, followed two days of testimony as Witness M in
14 the Aleksovski case; do you remember that?
15 A. I don't know whether it was two days later.
16 This was --
17 Q. No, I think we're --
18 A. I think that in fact I was a witness in the
19 Aleksovski case in March of 1998.
20 Q. Right, March the 25th and the 24th, 1998. Do
21 you remember that?
22 A. Yes, the testimony I do, but not the date.
23 Q. Right. But the point is that you gave
24 another statement to the Prosecutors about six months
25 after you testified -- six, eight months after you
1 testified in the Aleksovski case?
2 A. No, I just refreshed this statement. That
3 is, I highlighted the details that the investigators
4 were interested in.
5 Q. Right, but that was at the investigator's
6 request, wasn't it?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Have you ever given any testimony or made any
9 statements to the state commission for gathering facts
10 on war crimes in Zenica?
11 A. No.
12 Q. Now, when you were meeting with the
13 investigators for five days and immediately before you
14 testified in the Aleksovski case, were you told that it
15 was important to relate to them everything that you had
16 seen, everything that you had heard, and that it was
17 important not to miss out anything?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. They expressed that to you, didn't they?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. They told you it was important?
22 A. It's hard to go back to all the details of
23 events of six years ago.
24 Q. Right, but the point I'm making here is that
25 the investigators told that it was important to tell
1 them everything that you knew, so that you could
2 testify fully and make fully accurate statements; isn't
3 that right?
4 You have to say an oral response for the
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. And you understood that, didn't you?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. All right. Now, just to go over -- if I may,
10 I'll tell you the subjects that I'm going to be talking
11 about, just so that everyone can follow it, and you can
12 follow it too. Just some general questions to begin
14 In 1993, when you were involved in
15 hostilities in the spring and early summer of 1993, you
16 were just 19 years old, weren't you, sir?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. You were a private in the Territorial Defence
19 for the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina, weren't you?
20 A. I don't know what this "private" means.
21 Q. Well, in your November the 5th, 1998,
22 statement, here's what you said: "Before the attack on
23 Kruscica and the surrounding villages, my ABiH platoon,
24 to which I was allocated as private, was" --
25 JUDGE MAY: That may very well be an American
2 MR. SAYERS: It may well be, Your Honour.
3 Q. What was your rank?
4 A. A soldier, a regular soldier. And when I
5 said my platoon, that was my unit, where I was.
6 Q. I understand. We'll get into that.
7 Who was your commander?
8 A. I wouldn't like to mention that. I wouldn't
9 like to reveal his identity.
10 Q. I need to know the name of the commander,
11 Witness I, if you would.
12 JUDGE MAY: If the witness doesn't want to
13 mention it, what's the relevance of it?
14 MR. SAYERS: Well, I think it's pretty
15 relevant, Your Honour, because I think the evidence
16 from this witness is going to show that the ABiH, which
17 we have previously been informed was surprised on the
18 morning of the 16th of April, was actually fully
19 prepared for an attack in the area where this gentleman
20 was deployed, and that he was given orders to prepare
21 for such an attack. And I'd like to know the identity
22 of the commander just so that we can follow the command
23 structure up in our discovery efforts as this case goes
25 JUDGE MAY: Well, let's hear the examination
1 about this, and we will decide whether it's necessary
2 to have his name or not.
3 MR. SAYERS: Thank you very much, Your
5 Q. Just stepping back one bit, Witness I, you
6 were actually a member of the Muslim political party,
7 the SDA, at this time, weren't you?
8 A. I was not a member, but I was -- you could
9 say a supporter, because I voted for them. But I did
10 not have a membership card then, and I do not have it
12 Q. Well, do you remember testifying at
13 page 1.485 in the Aleksovski case, on March the 25th of
14 last year, just a year ago, quote:
15 "I was a member of the political party of
16 Democratic Action in 1991"?
17 A. No, as I said, I don't know how you interpret
18 it this way, a party member. I was not a party member
19 as somebody who engaged in politics. I was not
20 politically involved. In my view, you sort of ally
21 yourself with a party or become its member if you vote
22 for them. I made myself clear, by virtue of my voting
23 for the Party of Democratic Action, I subscribed to
24 this party, I became its member, but I was not
25 politically involved, actively, in any party.
1 Q. So you're telling this Trial Chamber, a year
2 after your Aleksovski testimony, that you weren't
3 really a member of the SDA?
4 JUDGE MAY: Well, that's a comment on the
6 MR. SAYERS: All right. Let me move on, Your
8 Q. Now, at the time that you say the HVO
9 launched an offensive on the village of Gornja Rovna on
10 January the 27th, you were, I believe you stated, in
11 the town of Novi Travnik on the front line fighting
12 against the Serb and the Montenegrin aggressors?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. You were on the front lines there with your
15 unit; right?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. Which unit were you in?
18 A. Territorial Defence.
19 Q. But what unit of the Territorial Defence?
20 A. It was a detachment. It was called the
21 Kaonik detachment.
22 Q. Have you ever heard of the MOS?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Could you just tell the Trial Chamber what
25 the MOS is?
1 A. It stands for Muslim Armed Forces.
2 Q. Was your commander in the MOS, without naming
4 A. I don't know if you understand the
5 distinction between the MOS and the Territorial
6 Defence. These are two different things.
7 Q. All right. Well --
8 A. So I'm not sure what your question is
9 regarding MOS. I was never a member of MOS. I was a
10 member of the Territorial Defence, and because the
11 Territorial Defence was part of the BH army, I was a
12 member of the ABiH.
13 Q. All right. Well, let me just move on a
14 little bit here.
15 You say that the village of Gornja Rovna was
16 defended on January the 27th by people who had hardly
17 any weapons; right?
18 A. Yes, yes.
19 Q. But even though they had hardly any weapons
20 and there were only ten men of military age in that
21 village, according to your testimony today, your
22 testimony is that nonetheless these ten individuals
23 successfully repelled an HVO attack without any losses;
24 is that right?
25 A. Yes, yes.
1 Q. Then you did not get back to the area until
2 February the 2nd, 1993, when you joined the front line
3 against the Croats; isn't that right?
4 A. Yes, yes.
5 Q. So the front lines had been established
6 against the Croats by the TO, of which you were a
7 member, as of February 1993?
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. Now, had you heard, Witness I, about a
10 massacre performed by members of the 7th Muslim Brigade
11 in late January 1993 at the village of Dusina,
12 involving many civilians who had been killed and a
13 military commander there in the HVO by the name of
14 Zvonimir or Zvonko Grabovac, who had been shot about a
15 dozen times at close range with automatic weapons and
16 had had his heart cut out from his body?
17 JUDGE MAY: That's a series of questions.
18 MR. SAYERS: Let me break it down.
19 JUDGE MAY: Did you know anything about
20 Dusina, Witness I?
21 A. Nothing specific. I hear it just now for the
22 first time that a massacre occurred there, and Dusina
23 is something that I'm actually not even very familiar
24 with. I never went to that village.
25 In my view, these questions, I don't
1 understand their relevance. I'm not understanding what
2 you're trying to prove.
3 MR. SAYERS: Well, just for the Trial
4 Chamber's information, there has been some reference to
5 Dusina. I'm not sure if you're familiar with the
6 geographical location of that village, so it might make
7 some sense to have the witness identify the location.
8 JUDGE MAY: We have heard about it, and no
9 doubt we're going to hear much more evidence about it.
10 The witness says that he doesn't know anything about
11 it, so I don't think it's going to take us very much
12 more forward.
13 MR. SAYERS: Very well, Your Honour. I'll
14 move on.
15 Q. Had you heard about an incident on April the
16 14th, 1993, in which four HVO officers were kidnapped
17 by members of the 7th Muslim Brigade outside the town
18 of Novi Travnik?
19 A. No.
20 Q. Did you hear anything or see, on the
21 television station from Zenica, Zetel, I think its name
22 is, anything about the kidnapping of Commander Zivko
23 Totic from the Jury Francetic Brigade of the HVO in
24 Zenica on the evening of April the 15th, 1993, sir?
25 A. I don't know what connection there is between
1 Zenica and my village. If you saw the map, you would
2 see very clearly where Zenica is and where Gornja Rovna
3 and Pezici. What do I have to do with Zivko Totic and
4 these higher officers? I absolutely do not know these
5 people; nor do I have an interest in them.
6 Q. I understand. But had you ever been informed
7 by any of the media, by your colleagues in the army --
8 A. Listen, I do not wish to comment on something
9 that I do not know, the capture of Zivko Totic. What
10 I'm more interested in is what I personally saw and
11 experienced. I hope that that is clear. I don't think
12 that I'm here to comment on Zivko Totic and what
13 happened to him and so on.
14 JUDGE MAY: Just answer the question, if you
15 would, Witness I. Had you heard about this incident?
16 We'll see whether it's relevant or not.
17 A. Yes, I heard about it. But, please, if I can
18 have a break now.
19 JUDGE MAY: You want a break?
20 A. Yes.
21 JUDGE MAY: Very well. We'll take our break,
22 20 minutes. Ten past 11.00.
23 --- Recess taken at 10.48 a.m.
24 --- On resuming at 11.15 a.m.
25 JUDGE MAY: Yes, Mr. Sayers. I think we
1 might move on from Zivko Totic, go on to the next.
2 MR. SAYERS: I will do precisely that, Your
4 Q. Let me turn your attention, sir, if I may, to
5 the events of the evening of April the 15th and April
6 the 16th in which you were involved. Now, your
7 platoon, your anti-tank platoon, was employed in
8 Kruscica and the surrounding villages on the front line
9 with the HVO, wasn't it?
10 A. Do you want me to answer, or should I
11 perhaps -- we should clarify something here. In
12 Kruscica, for instance, there were no front lines
13 there, because the conflict with the HVO had not
14 started yet. There were a kind of local guards, just
15 for security's sake, because Kruscica and Pezici are
16 very close to one another, and one knew that if Pezici
17 fell, Kruscica would fall too, so that certain measures
18 were taken to forestall the situation, as in Kovacevac
19 and other places. In other words, there were some
20 guards there simply to take care of the people living
22 Q. Thank you for that explanation, and coming
23 back to my question, you were actually located on the
24 front line with the HVO from the evening of April the
25 15th to April the 16th, 1993, weren't you?
1 A. No, not on the line. You seem to be
2 confusing these two words. "Line" is one thing, and
3 "guards" is a different matter.
4 Q. All right, sir. Let me -- I'm not using my
5 words, I'm using your words, actually. Let me just
6 read to you a line from your witness statement that you
7 signed on the 11th of January, 1998: "On the 16th of
8 April, 1993, I was on the front line at Kruscica near
9 Vitez. We were guarding the villages because we felt
10 there was something in the air."
11 You said that, didn't you?
12 A. Yes, we thought -- can you grasp that?
13 Because we thought those were not front lines; we were
14 not dug in or anything of the sort. Those were just
16 Q. And in the evening of April the 15th, you
17 observed heavy troop movements on the part of the HVO
18 and regarded it as absolutely obvious that they were
19 preparing for a fight, didn't you?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. And indeed that's what happened: There was a
22 fight, wasn't there, after you had observed these troop
24 A. Yes, in the morning of the 16th, they
25 attacked us.
1 Q. And in fact your level of alertness was
2 increased by your unit commander, wasn't it?
3 A. Yes. We already knew what had happened in
4 Kovacevac and Pezici, so -- we already knew these
5 things, but I'm telling you that Kruscica depended on
6 Pezici and Pezici depended on Kruscica. If one fell,
7 then the other one would fall, too. That was that.
8 Q. Before the hostilities actually started, you
9 and the other troops in your unit were sent to guard a
10 hill called Stjene against the expected HVO assault;
11 isn't that true?
12 A. Yes. It's a hill nearby, near Kruscica.
13 Q. When the fighting started, you and a
14 colleague by the name of Mustafa Hodzic were captured,
15 and that was after about five hours of heavy fighting,
16 was it not?
17 A. We were not fighting there. There was no
18 fighting there. We were surrounded by the HVO unit,
19 and we were captured.
20 Q. Kruscica, I believe, sir, was a TO
21 headquarters whose commander was Safet Sivro; is that
23 A. Yes, true.
24 Q. Kruscica, the TO headquarters in Kruscica,
25 was just a short distance away from where you were sent
1 to guard the hill called Stjene; is that right?
2 A. Well, about a kilometre, kilometre and a
4 Q. The TO actually had other headquarters at the
5 villages of Preocica and Poculica, did they not?
6 A. Yes, over there on the other side.
7 Q. Those are TO headquarters on both sides of
8 the main spinal road that leads from Busovaca, up
9 through Kaonik, and takes a left and goes through Vitez
10 on its way to Travnik; is that correct?
11 A. It is.
12 Q. All right. In one of the diagrams that was
13 attached to your earlier statements, you drew or
14 identified a location where HVO artillery pieces were
15 stored behind prisoners' quarters at Kaonik, and it was
16 your view that that had occurred because the HVO knew
17 that the BiH army would not shell the prison facility;
18 is that correct?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. There's no doubt at all on our position that
21 the ABiH actually had artillery with which to shell
22 that facility at that time; is that correct?
23 A. Listen, the Kaonik camp and all the adjacent
24 places controlled by the BH army, the range of those
25 pieces were relatively small, they could hardly
1 threaten those places, and there was very little
3 Q. The point I'm trying to make is that the BH
4 army actually did have artillery pieces in its
5 inventory of weapons that it had at its disposal for
6 either offensive or defensive purposes; correct?
7 A. Why, yes, they did.
8 Q. Let me turn to another subject, if I may, the
9 testimony that you gave concerning Mr. Aleksovski and
10 the Red Cross.
11 It's true, is it not, that during your two
12 months of captivity at the Kaonik camp, that there were
13 numerous visits from the international committee for
14 the Red Cross?
15 A. Yes, every 15 days or so.
16 Q. Well, and in fact you met with one of the Red
17 Cross representatives, a lady by the name of Beatrice
18 is that correct, or Biatriche?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. In fact, when she met you for registration
21 purposes, she actually asked to see you alone, didn't
23 A. No, not alone. There could have been about
24 20 of us when the Red Cross registered us when I was
1 Q. All right. But she did ask -- maybe I'm
2 confused on that, but at some point she did ask to see
3 you alone, didn't she?
4 A. No, that is not true. She asked me what had
5 happened to me, because I had a scar over my left eye,
6 and she asked me about it. I didn't want to tell her
7 the truth because I knew that I would be beaten again
8 after that, so I said I had been digging and hit myself
9 with the shovel, and asked them to take me to a doctor.
10 Q. Well, let me just read you a portion from the
11 statement that you gave on the 11th of January, 1998,
12 regarding a meeting with this lady that I've identified
13 and Mr. Aleksovski.
14 "We sat around the table in the hallway
15 where we usually had our meals. I heard that she asked
16 Aleksovski to leave because she wanted to speak with us
17 in private. Aleksovski left, and the procedure with
18 the registration started." Right?
19 So she did speak with you without the
20 presence of HVO troops or without the presence of
21 Mr. Aleksovski; right?
22 A. Yes, after she registered us.
23 Q. All right. You told her, sir, that you
24 wanted to see a doctor, didn't you?
25 A. Yes, yes. I wanted to be treated, because I
1 was in a horrible state.
2 Q. Later that day, Mr. Aleksovski drove you and
3 two other people from the Kaonik camp in his own
4 personal car to the outpatient clinic in Busovaca, did
5 he not?
6 THE INTERPRETER: Could you please slow
7 down, Counsel?
8 A. Not that same day. It was the next time when
9 Mrs. Beatrice came, only that when she came the second
10 time, when I asked again to ask to see a doctor, and
11 that is when it was done. So it could have been a
12 fortnight later, but not that first time, not -- that
13 first time, I had no medical help at all.
14 Q. All right. Do you remember telling the
15 investigators, sir, on January the 11th, 1998, the
16 following: "She," Beatrice, "told the commander,
17 Aleksovski, that I should see the --"
18 THE INTERPRETER: Will you please slow
19 down? The interpreters don't have the document.
20 MR. SAYERS:
21 Q. "She told the commander, Aleksovski, that I
22 should see the doctor. He did not take me there
23 immediately but in the evening"?
24 A. Yes, but that was when she came the second
25 time. I again asked to see a doctor, and then she told
1 Aleksovski that I should go to a doctor. Then in the
2 evening, he took me and two others. He drove by a car
3 to the outpatient clinic in Busovaca, and I was not
4 extended help there.
5 Q. Well, the point is, though, that
6 Mr. Aleksovski was told that you should see a doctor,
7 and he took you to see a doctor that same day in his
8 own car, didn't he?
9 JUDGE MAY: Well, I think we've got the point
10 here. There's no need to repeat it.
11 MR. SAYERS: Let me move on.
12 Q. When you were taken to see the doctor, you
13 gave them a false name, didn't you?
14 A. Yes.
15 Q. You gave them a false rank, didn't you?
16 A. I didn't have any rank, if you mean a
17 military rank. I had no rank. I went to see a doctor
18 or, rather, Aleksovski drove me to a doctor. I was the
19 last one of the three to enter the surgery, and they
20 asked my name. I lied about that. Then Aleksovski
21 said that I should give them my true name and where I
22 came from. Then I said where I came from and who I
23 was, and then finally they told me if I get out alive
24 of this, then to go to doctors for treatment to Zenica
25 because they were not going to treat me there. I was
1 given some three pills --
2 Q. [Obscured by interpretation] the question.
3 You gave them false information about your rank, didn't
5 JUDGE MAY: The witness has said he didn't
6 have a rank, so let's go on. Anyway, I'm not sure it's
7 going to assist us very much.
8 MR. SAYERS:
9 Q. Let me turn to the basis for the conclusions
10 that you reached regarding the relationship between
11 Mr. Kordic and Mr. Andrijasevic.
12 Do I understand that the sole basis for your
13 conclusions in that regard were the snippet of
14 conversation that you overheard between Mr. --
15 (Trial Chamber confers)
16 MR. SAYERS:
17 Q. -- Mr. Aleksovski and Mr. Andrijasevic while
18 you were cleaning in the hallway of the Kaonik
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. Did you know that there were three or
22 four hundred people at that Easter party?
23 A. I haven't the slightest, how many of them
24 there were. I never heard the figure, three hundred,
25 four hundred, I mean, and I never mentioned any
1 figure. I never said there were 300 or 400 people at
2 that party. I simply don't have that kind of
3 information. The only information I have is what I
4 heard during the dialogue between Aleksovski and
5 Andrijasevic, and that was about all those Easter eggs
6 and how Andrijasevic was knocking his egg against
7 Kordic's egg, and that's about it. That was the
8 dialogue. They really enjoyed it, and they said that
9 they had had a great time and things like that. I
10 really don't know what else you want to know. I mean
11 what else could I conclude but that they were at
12 Kordic's, that they went to his place? Where would
13 they then go, whether it was in Busovaca, whether in
14 Vitez or where, that I don't know.
15 Q. You don't know where this Easter party was
16 held, do you?
17 A. No.
18 Q. You really don't know anything about it, do
20 JUDGE MAY: Well, the witness has given his
21 evidence about it. It's what he overheard somebody
22 say, and that is the extent of his knowledge.
23 MR. SAYERS: Very well, Your Honour. Just a
24 few clean-up questions on this particular subject.
25 Q. You testified, I believe, that you've never
1 spoken to Mr. Kordic. Is that correct?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. You've never met him, have you?
4 A. Never. Personally, no, never, except this is
5 the first time I see him.
6 Q. All right. You never saw him during the two
7 months that you spent at the Kaonik facility, did you?
8 A. No.
9 Q. He never visited there?
10 A. (No audible response)
11 Q. One final question. You would concede, would
12 you not, that you don't know what the ranks or insignia
13 or military structure of the HVO was?
14 A. I don't know. I know just that Mr. Kordic
15 was referred to as a colonel. But what other ranks and
16 all those things, I don't know that.
17 Q. Very well. I'll move on to the final part of
18 my questions, and that concerns the audiotaped
19 conversation about which you gave testimony to the
20 Trial Chamber. Just a few questions on this.
21 The first is this: Where is the tape?
22 A. I don't know, I really don't.
23 Q. The tape was a conversation between two
24 people that lasted about five minutes, was it?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. Your testimony is that five-minute
2 conversation involved three separate attacks on Gornja
3 Rovna or somewhere?
4 A. Not Gornja Rovna. Pezici, there.
5 Q. Was the name "Gornja Rovna" mentioned once in
6 that taped conversation?
7 A. No.
8 Q. The location of this alleged attack wasn't
9 mentioned anywhere in the conversation, was it?
10 A. The location was mentioned. It said "attack
11 that wood" or "attack the upper part", and that was a
12 reference to that part of our place which is in the
14 Q. How did you [indiscernible]?
15 A. Well, I couldn't but know. I mean these
16 communications devices which recorded a conversation
17 had very short range, not more than two kilometres.
18 That was the range. Anything that happened during that
19 conversation or, rather, what they talked about, all
20 the instructions for the attack, all this was taking
21 place in the village.
22 Q. All right. Now, let's see. The first
23 description of this conversation that you gave occurred
24 over a four-day period in November 1997 and January of
25 1998, and that's about four or five years after this
1 five-minute audiotape that you heard; correct?
2 A. (No audible response)
3 Q. Had you ever heard the tape after you first
4 heard it on August the 19th, 1993, according to your
6 A. People still talk about that in my village
7 and how these things happened and all that. Everybody
8 knows about it, except that we -- or I mean I never
9 thought that all this would happen. I never thought
10 that I would be here talking about that.
11 Q. Well, you first told the Prosecutor that this
12 conversation was between two HVO officers; right?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Did they identify themselves as officers?
15 A. No. They were using secret names, Puma 1 and
16 Puma 2.
17 Q. So you don't know whether these people were
18 officers or not?
19 A. How do I know who was what? Would you know
20 if somebody is Puma 1 or not? Would you know whether
21 he was an officer or not?
22 Q. All right. Now, the first version of this
23 conversation that you related to the investigators five
24 years ago was that instead of ordering an attack on the
25 centre, there was actually an order to attack the upper
1 part first, not the centre. Isn't that right?
2 A. I didn't understand the way you put your
3 question. Could you ...
4 Q. That's fine. The first time that you told
5 the story to the investigators, you told the
6 investigators that the order to attack was to attack
7 the upper part first?
8 A. To attack -- to attack the upper part of the
9 village, yes.
10 Q. So the testimony that you just gave, that the
11 attack was to be on the centre first and then, if that
12 failed, or when that failed, to attack the upper part,
13 and when that failed, to go and attack the lower part,
14 that's actually not correct, is it?
15 A. I really don't know what you're driving at.
16 First the order was to attack the upper part of the
17 village, on the cassette. First the upper part of the
18 village; then, if that would be impossible, then the
19 lower part or the centre.
20 But all in all, I mean, there were several
21 attacks on the village between the 16th and the 20th of
22 April, and there was a five-minute conversation, and
23 it's just too short. It was way too short to record
24 all these attacks and to do that; simply -- the first
25 instruction, for instance, on that cassette, was to
1 attack the upper part of the village, and if that
2 failed, then they should attack the centre; and if they
3 couldn't take the centre, then they were ordered again
4 to attack the upper part of the village. And after
5 that, after that failed, then things that I already
6 described happened.
7 Q. All right. Well, isn't it true that when you
8 were asked to or invited back by the investigators to
9 highlight certain topics of your testimony, you told
10 them, in November of last year, the following: "Puma 1
11 was ordering Puma 2 to attack the centre. After some
12 minutes, Puma 2 answered that it was impossible. Then
13 Puma 1 ordered to attack the part above."
14 A. To attack the part above, yes.
15 Q. Well, what was the order? To attack the
16 centre first, or the part above, or don't you remember?
17 JUDGE MAY: The witness has dealt with that.
18 He has told us what he said the order was.
19 MR. SAYERS: I'll move on, Your Honour.
20 Q. You would concede that the tape quality was
21 pretty bad, Witness I, wouldn't you?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. You didn't recognise the voice, did you, when
24 you heard the tape? Either of the voices?
25 A. No. I would never have known who they were
1 had Puma 2 not cursed Puma 1 and used his name, because
2 that is when he mentioned Mr. Kordic.
3 Q. Right. But you, frankly, sir, had no idea
4 whether Puma 2 was talking to Puma 1 or Mr. Kordic, did
6 A. Truth to tell, whether Puma 1 was Kordic,
7 according to the cassette, yes, he was. But whether it
8 really was he or not, you have to ask him.
9 Q. You just don't know, do you?
10 A. I was clear, I think. Listening to that
11 tape, I concluded that it was Kordic. Whether that was
12 he indeed, you have to ask him. Can't you understand
14 Q. I know that that was your conclusion, but you
15 don't --
16 JUDGE MAY: No, let's go on from this point.
17 We have the evidence on it.
18 MR. SAYERS: I'm pretty close to the end
19 here, Your Honour. Just a few final cleanup matters,
20 if I may.
21 Q. You said that this conversation had
22 supposedly been recorded by the ABiH in Gornja Rovna;
23 is that correct?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. At a communications facility that the ABiH
1 had stationed in Gornja Rovna?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And you explained that this tape was
4 supposedly made so that it could be compared with the
5 way the HVO tried to attack the village?
6 A. That tape was made in the attack on my
7 village, on Pezici, between the 16th and 20th of
8 April. That is when the tape was made. That is when
9 it was recorded.
10 Q. Well, in your highlighting of certain things
11 to the Prosecutor about seven months ago, you said, "It
12 was recorded in the BiHA communication centre of Gornja
13 Rovna while the attack was going on so that it could be
14 compared to the way the HVO tried to attack the
16 Is that what you said?
17 A. To compare, yes.
18 Q. All right. Now, the testimony that you have
19 given regarding the conversations by the HVO guards or
20 the references by the HVO guards, supposedly, to
21 Mr. Kordic as the chief or the boss or whatever, and
22 the curses that were supposedly uttered against
23 Mr. Kordic, that's the first time that you have ever
24 told this story, isn't it?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. It's not in any of your previous statements,
2 is it?
3 A. What's that got to do with it?
4 Q. And it's not in the two days of testimony
5 that you gave in the Aleksovski case concerning the
6 conditions of your confinement and the circumstances of
7 your confinement in Kaonik, is it?
8 A. What's Aleksovski got to do with -- what's
9 the Aleksovski case got to do with curses addressed to
10 Kordic? I don't understand.
11 Q. The point I'm making is that you've never
12 previously given that testimony in Aleksovski or to the
13 investigators in any of the numerous conversations that
14 you've had with them; isn't that correct?
15 A. If we are talking about the Kordic case and
16 when they asked me to give them the information that I
17 had, or rather to tell them things that I had heard in
18 the camp, those were the particulars I knew, that they
19 were conversations between Aleksovski and -- with
20 Aleksovski and Andrijasevic, that those from the
21 intervention platoon of the HVO cursed him, and they
22 were mentioning him. That is what I knew. I don't
23 know what else you want to know. Apart from that, I
24 don't know. Can you remember what you did six years
25 ago? You know, I went through something horrible in my
2 JUDGE MAY: Witness I, I know this is
3 difficult, but please don't argue with counsel, and
4 we'll finish more quickly.
5 MR. SAYERS: The final question I have for
6 this witness, Your Honour, is:
7 Q. Do you know who General Milivoj Petkovic is?
8 A. No.
9 MR. SAYERS: No further questions, unless the
10 Trial Chamber has any questions.
11 JUDGE MAY: Well, the question I have is
12 this: Is it disputed that Mr. Kordic was Puma 1?
13 MR. SAYERS: Absolutely, Your Honour. Our
14 position is that that is fiction.
15 JUDGE MAY: Are you suggesting that the
16 witness has made that up?
17 MR. SAYERS: I am.
18 JUDGE MAY: Very well. You had better put it
19 to him.
20 MR. SAYERS:
21 Q. Isn't it true that you actually made up that
22 conversation, that there never was an audiotape, Mr. I?
23 A. I never made it up. I repeated what I had
24 heard, and I have no intention of making anything up,
25 nor am I interested in that sort of thing. Do you
1 understand it? It was crystal clear what was going
2 on. If it is not clear to you, then we can talk, and
3 I'll try to clear the matters up for you.
4 MR. SAYERS: I have no further questions.
5 Thank you.
6 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Kovacic?
7 MR. KOVACIC: (Interpretation) Thank you, Your
8 Honours. In the brief dated the 3rd of May, 1999,
9 Prosecutor's witness, 247, the witness is mentioned at
10 point 247 on page 18, and the first group of witnesses
11 who had allegedly had a direct contact with any of the
12 accused. Along with his name are stated the counts of
13 the indictment to which the testimony refers. But
14 we've just heard the testimony, and thanks to what is
15 stated, that witness had nothing to do with the counts
16 that the accused, my defendant, Mario Cerkez, is
17 charged with, so we have no questions in this
18 cross-examination. Thank you.
19 Re-examined by Mr. Nice:
20 [Witness answered through interpreter]
21 Q. You were asked about membership or support of
22 the political party, the SDA, and two words in English
23 translated to your own language used were, first,
24 "supporter"; second, "member." Can you explain, if
25 it's possible, whether those two words have distinct
1 and different meanings at the time that we are speaking
2 of? If so, what was a supporter, what was a member, of
3 a political party?
4 A. Well, a member is a member. For somebody to
5 be a member of a party, he would have to have a
6 membership card and be included in the work of that
7 party. As a sympathiser, or supporter, that is --
8 well, it's something that you have sympathy for,
9 something that you have opted for, for a political
10 party which presents its views and positions, whether
11 you vote for it or not. That is what a supporter
12 means, whereas a member, I was never a member, nor did
13 I remain a member.
14 Q. Thank you. The Red Cross staff member,
15 Beatrice, when she visited, did she visit alone, or did
16 she need the services of an interpreter?
17 A. Yes. She needed the services of an
18 interpreter, and she was always accompanied by an
20 Q. When Aleksovski left the room, did the
21 interpreter remain behind?
22 A. Yes. We didn't trust one of the interpreters
23 that would come with him, because the first time -- and
24 this proved to be true, because when we asked for
25 medical assistance the first time, Beatrice was there,
1 and so was the interpreter, and we were alone, but we
2 didn't get it -- get her, and this had to be conveyed
3 back to Aleksovski. The second time, she came with
4 another interpreter; we were given medical treatment,
5 so the message was conveyed.
6 Q. Why did you not give completely accurate
7 details, then, to the Red Cross?
8 A. Because I didn't dare. I knew that if I said
9 something, they would beat me in the camp and would
10 make me go digging or doing something that was against
11 my will.
12 Q. Did --
13 A. And so I'd be abused after that, quite
15 Q. Did Beatrice give Aleksovski advice as to the
16 future treatment that you should receive, and any
17 advice about trench digging?
18 A. Well, Beatrice told Aleksovski -- and we
19 listened to the interpretation of what she said -- she
20 told him that we were not to go digging, as human
21 shields, and not to engage in any strenuous physical
22 labour, that we were not to be abused, we were not to
23 be left to go hungry or without clothing, which is what
24 we were.
25 Q. And was her advice to Aleksovski followed, or
2 A. No, never. To the last day of my stay in the
3 camp, I went on digging, and I went on doing all the
4 jobs that the HVO soldiers had ordered me to do.
5 Q. The trip to Zenica for medical treatment, as
6 you explained, and indeed as is set out in your
7 statement at page 10, was on the second visit of
8 Beatrice to the camp. Following such treatment as you
9 received, what, if anything, did Aleksovski say about
10 your getting treatment?
11 A. Well, when I returned from Busovaca, I didn't
12 receive any medical treatment. But when they learnt
13 where I came from and who I was, he gave me some three
14 pills. I had no idea what the pills were for. And on
15 my return from Busovaca, he said, "Well, don't say that
16 we didn't send you off to a doctor and that you were
17 not given medical care and attention."
18 But of course the medical treatment was
19 nonexistent. They told me, at the outpatient
20 department at Busovaca, "If you have come out alive, go
21 and get treatment in Zenica. We're not going to treat
22 you here."
23 Q. The tape, you were asked how did you know
24 that this related to events in your village; by whom
25 were you given the tape?
1 A. My neighbour gave me my tape, my colleague --
2 how can I put it?
3 Q. Just "Yes" or "No," did he tell you the
4 circumstances in which he got the tape, where he had
5 got the tape from when it was made?
6 A. He took the tape because he worked in a
7 communications facility.
8 Q. Did he tell you when the tape had been made
9 and the circumstances of its being made?
10 A. He said that it was between the 16th and 20th
11 of April, when my village found itself under attack by
12 the HVO. That was when it was made.
13 Q. How consistent or otherwise was what you
14 heard on the tape with what you knew, both from what
15 you'd been able to see from your position further to
16 the west and with what you had heard from villagers who
17 had been there?
18 A. Everything on the cassette, you can compare
19 the cassette, and you can superimpose it in the field
20 and compare.
21 Q. Have you made efforts to obtain that cassette
22 since? "Yes" or "No"?
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Of whom have you made efforts, or to whom
25 have you made requests?
1 A. That same man, the same man that I listened
2 to the cassette with for the first time. I contacted
3 him and asked him where the cassette was, whether he
4 still had it, and so forth.
5 Q. Were you able to get the cassette from him?
6 A. No.
7 Q. One of your statements says that the tape was
8 made so that it can be compared; it may be a language
9 matter, but what did you mean by that?
10 A. Well, the cassette was made, as I say, when
11 the attack was launched on my village between the 16th
12 and 20th of April. And the cassette clearly -- you can
13 clearly compare what had happened and compare it to the
14 tales of the population, my brother or father who were
15 up there at the time, what they said. You could
16 clearly compare the cassette with what had happened in
17 the village and what people said had happened.
18 Q. You were asked about accounts you have given
19 today of things said at the camp about Kordic and
20 Aleksovski -- and I propose simply to lead with this,
21 or I can put the detail in if my friends would
22 prefer -- did you in both statements make reference to
23 Aleksovski and his contacts with Kordic and what was
24 said about Kordic?
25 A. Well, in both statements, I think I did
1 mention that, that they had the Easter festivities and
2 that they had this corrida of eggs, this egg-knocking,
3 and the discussion between Andrijasevic and the other,
4 and Kordic was mentioned there.
5 Q. Thank you very much.
6 MR. NICE: Those are the only questions I ask
7 of this witness in re-examination.
8 The only point that I'm invited to consider
9 -- and I think, especially as we are now not under
10 pressure of time, it's worth considering -- is whether
11 the Chamber would be assisted by one slightly better
12 map of Kaonik, because otherwise I might forget it for
13 later, and if this witness can deal with it, then we've
14 got it.
15 JUDGE MAY: Yes.
16 MR. NICE: It may be that other witnesses
17 coming along will deal with it, and we have a large
18 version of it on the board over there. You can see it
19 in the corner of the court. I'm not suggesting we get
20 it out now, but the Court can see it; it can be used
21 for pointing to. It's number 1870.
22 And if we put it on the ELMO, please, facing
23 north, that will fit with my general practice. Usher,
24 if you could put it round so that it faces north?
25 There's a "North" pointer. It doesn't have to be
1 square on the ELMO. Thank you.
2 Q. Does this show Kaonik camp, please?
3 A. This photo shows an area, but -- a particular
4 area. As to the camp, well, it's here somewhere.
5 Q. Use the pointer by the glass on your table.
6 Use the pointer with the glass on your table. Without
7 moving your head too much, because it's -- keeping your
8 head in the same position, just point roughly where it
10 A. (Indicates)
11 Q. Yes. Thank you.
12 MR. NICE: The Tribunal will recall from
13 yesterday's photograph the distinctive shape of the
14 road or track that leads from the right of the point
15 marked by the witness to join the road system, and
16 that's one way one can connect the camp up. Thank you
17 very much.
18 JUDGE MAY: Witness I, that concludes your
19 evidence. Thank you for coming to the International
20 Tribunal to give it. You are now released.
21 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
22 (The witness withdrew)
23 MR. NICE: We're going to go back into open
25 (Open session)
1 MR. NICE: It would have been more
2 satisfactory had I had another half an hour's evidence
3 that I could have led this morning, but alas, I don't.
4 Equally, I don't have the embarrassment of having to
5 send witnesses back, their time having been completely
7 Can I raise or mention just a couple of
8 points, some matters of detail which the time we have
9 enables us to deal with? Some considerable time ago --
10 it feels that; it probably wasn't such a very long time
11 ago -- through the witness Mr. Ahmic, a number of
12 photographs were produced, and their exhibit number was
13 1593A. The Chamber will recall the speed at which I
14 went through them, and I went through them perhaps too
15 quickly as to one, number 33, because I was told by one
16 of the court interpreters afterwards that what was read
17 out by me, and indeed what appears on the index as to
18 what was written on the wall, was incorrect.
19 Now, it may seem a small point, but it may
20 have some significance. If the usher could just put 33
21 on the ELMO for us, and if the chamber would be good
22 enough to look to its index, can I ask the
23 interpreters, if they can read it, and it's legible, to
24 tell us what religious festival is spoken of on the
1 THE INTERPRETER: Easter. It says, "Happy
3 MR. NICE: The Chamber will see that the
4 index, therefore, is wrong, and although it may seem a
5 small point, in view of the timing of events in April,
6 it may not be wholly insignificant.
7 I'm grateful both to the interpreters for
8 dealing with that today and also for having taken the
9 trouble to alert me to what I had got wrong or what had
10 been got wrong earlier and I had repeated.
11 The second point, the attitude of the
12 Defence, as expressed in correspondence and argument,
13 about the taking of witness statements has radically
14 changed from an all-out suggestion that they are taken
15 in bad faith and slanted to an open and complete
16 acknowledgment of the reverse.
17 As you know, I have intended to make
18 available the investigator and indeed, if necessary,
19 the lawyer who took the statement, the second statement
20 from Dr. Mujezinovic. It may be that the changing
21 approach of the Defence means that that is no longer
22 required of them. If it is, then the witnesses will,
23 of course, be tendered in a way which the Chamber would
24 probably regard as conventional if such an attack is to
25 be made. But I would be grateful to know from the
1 Defence if they now wish to have the opportunity of
2 cross-examining, in particular, the investigator who
3 took the statement.
4 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Sayers, can you deal with
5 that now or will you indicate in due course?
6 MR. SAYERS: I think I need a few minutes to
7 mull that over, and perhaps it would be better if it
8 were dealt with in due course.
9 JUDGE MAY: Well, perhaps you can send a
10 message through the usual channels when you've decided,
11 but if you would attend to that, please.
12 MR. SAYERS: We will. Thank you.
13 MR. NICE: The timetable for following
14 witnesses has been necessarily affected by the new
15 sitting dates and, to some degree, by the discussion
16 we've had about witnesses. I shall be in a position to
17 tell my friends, I hope by the end of the morning,
18 precisely the names of witnesses I intend to call,
19 although I think they will all be within the listed
21 For the Chamber's assistance, where we have
22 three afternoons followed by a Friday, Saturday, and
23 Sunday before another sitting, I'm necessarily going to
24 be somewhat conservative in the number of witnesses I
25 call here, because it wouldn't be desirable to keep
1 people over that long weekend. I suspect that we will
2 opt for some of the witnesses who were stood down this
3 week, which are short witnesses in theory, capable of
4 providing direct evidence about one or other defendant,
5 and it may be it will be one witness per afternoon.
6 There is the risk that the afternoons will be shorter
7 than would be normal, depending on the
8 cross-examination, but I hope that's an acceptable
9 compromise, given the difficulty about interrupted
10 sittings. We will do our best to keep those afternoons
11 full of evidence.
12 JUDGE MAY: Well, it seems a sensible
14 MR. NICE: Thank you.
15 Thereafter, we will probably provide a change
16 of, as it were, diet. We'll deal with the outstanding
17 evidence, if he's available, of Mr. McLeod and
18 probably, I think, follow with a journalist or a
19 witness who can provide an overview, because it seems
20 to us that this is likely -- this general development
21 of the case with all types of witnesses is likely to be
22 more helpful than just having one category at a time.
23 The expert reports, which I hope to have
24 served next week, although one of them is long, I will
25 have them marked, if this is helpful, by tab or by
1 sidelines, with concluding paragraphs, that it may be
2 are all that the Chamber need preread until it knows
3 what is in issue as between the parties.
4 Finally, and I only feel it's perhaps helpful
5 to mention this in light of the very helpful schedule
6 that the Chamber has provided, it might be that any
7 trip that the Chamber wanted to conduct would be
8 something that could happen relatively soon. That is
9 to say, by now the Chamber is probably beginning to get
10 a sufficient feel for the area overall as to know the
11 places it would or might want to see, and of course
12 parties on one side and the other could also point out
13 what matters might be of value. I mention that
14 because, of course, if there is to be a trip, it would
15 probably have to be within the timetable that's been
16 identified so far and, for reasons of weather, not
17 after October, I would have guessed.
18 JUDGE MAY: Well, Mr. Nice, there are
19 security considerations to be taken account of before
20 any visit can be made. If you wish the matter to be
21 considered formally, perhaps you could briefly put the
22 proposal into writing and it can then be considered
23 here and elsewhere.
24 MR. NICE: Certainly. We'll do that, because
25 I think it is our view that this would help. It's very
1 difficult, I suspect, for even those who may have
2 experience of maps in other areas fully to understand
3 the scale on the ground of this territory, how intimate
4 one place is to another and so on.
5 JUDGE MAY: If you would then put the matter
6 into writing, outlining the places that you think it
7 appropriate for the Trial Chamber to go to, the Defence
8 can then respond, and perhaps this could be dealt with
9 as soon as possible.
10 MR. NICE: Certainly.
11 JUDGE MAY: There's no need to go into great
12 length about it, but the places must be clear so that a
13 decision can be made about them.
14 MR. NICE: I'll do that.
15 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Sayers, you wanted to raise
17 MR. SAYERS: A very short matter, Your
18 Honour. It concerns the motion to exclude four
19 witnesses that was heard, I believe, on June the 3rd of
20 1999, and I wanted to clear up a factual inaccuracy
21 that is contained on page 3221 and 3222.
22 It concerns receipts of statements from two
23 witnesses that were not among the four involved, and I
24 had informed the Trial Chamber that we had received, on
25 the night before, the evening before June the 2nd, two
1 statements from a gentleman by the name of Hajrudin
2 Indic and a gentleman by the name of David Pinter, and
3 I informed the Trial Chamber that these gentlemen had
4 not been listed on the witness lists. It's since been
5 suggested that that was a misrepresentation. To me,
6 that was a peripheral matter, because we were actually
7 just using those by way of example.
8 We did receive those statements for the first
9 time on June the 2nd, 1999, obviously. With respect to
10 the first one, Mr. Hajrudin Indic, "Indic" is
11 apparently the gentleman's surname, and he was never
12 listed by that name in the witness lists. He was
13 actually listed as variously Mr. Haludine or
14 Mr. Hajrudin rather than Mr. Indic. He was actually
15 also identified as Mr. Indic, so I'm afraid we weren't
16 able to determine that --
17 THE INTERPRETER: Could the counsel slow
18 down, please?
19 MR. SAYERS: [indiscernible] in fact been
20 listed on the witness list, and I wanted to bring that
21 to the Trial Chamber's attention.
22 With respect to the second gentleman, David
23 Pinter, he actually did appear on the witness list and
24 I just made a mistake on that, and I apologise for it.
25 I just wanted to bring that to the Trial
1 Court's attention to clear up any inaccuracy that's
2 contained in the record. Thank you.
3 JUDGE MAY: Very well.
4 MR. NICE: Can I just make a comment on
6 It was a matter of grave concern to us that
7 names which were quite clearly on the list and which
8 had been identified as witnesses to be called were then
9 subject to the suggestion that statements were served
10 outside time, and it simply wasn't accurate. Of
11 course, the reference was made in the course of the
12 recurring suggestion that there has been service of
13 material outside deadlines, which is simply not true,
14 and in the course of an important legal argument one
15 name appeared on the list in exactly the same form,
16 "David Pinter", and the other name appeared simply by
17 the reverse, "Smith John" as opposed to "John Smith",
18 it being said by the Defence that these names didn't
19 appear anywhere on the list.
20 What we have done, because of this recurring
21 and unfortunate approach by the Defence, is we have
22 prepared an authoritative, complete list of the
23 production of documents. It's been filed yesterday.
24 It is clear, and it is to be hoped that these errors
25 don't happen again.
1 MR. SAYERS: If I may respond very briefly,
2 Your Honour.
3 The point that was being made was that these
4 statements had been delivered to us for the first time
5 on June the 2nd, way beyond the May the 17th deadline
6 that this Trial Chamber had imposed for the delivery of
8 I might add, Your Honour, that those
9 statements continue to be delivered. In fact, we have
10 another receipt here, admittedly for people who have
11 been identified, but for the first time in English, the
12 final statements for the first time in English, June
13 the 14th.
14 So I don't think that it's a significant
15 matter. I was using those two names by way of
16 illustration, but the point to be made was that we
17 received those witnesses' statements for the first time
18 on June the 2nd, 1999, and that is accurate.
19 Thank you.
20 JUDGE MAY: I'm going to -- Mr. Kovacic.
21 MR. KOVACIC: (Interpretation) Mr. President,
22 just two words from me. Our dear colleague Mr. Nice
23 mentioned a plan for the witnesses after the
24 intermission that we're going to have lasting several
25 days. He talked about many witnesses, and we are
1 informed -- we have been informed of the list, but the
2 problem is that always the first three or four, because
3 we don't know which witnesses will be called until the
4 very last. So could he please inform us, of those 40,
5 50 or 60, to give us the first seven witnesses? He
6 doesn't have to proceed in that particular order, but
7 we would like to know the group of witnesses to be
8 called in the first couple of days. It doesn't matter
9 whether on the first, second or third day, but we
10 should like to prepare.
11 As we are travelling, my office is here at
12 the moment, so I take the documents I need for the
13 first ten witnesses, and when I go back to my office in
14 Croatia, I get a fax saying it's not those particular
15 ten but other ten witnesses. So those are the
16 technical problems that occur. Of course, it can be
17 solved, but it does mean losing a lot of time and
18 concentrating on things that are not essential.
19 So we don't insist that the seven names he
20 gives us should proceed in that order, but we would
21 like to have the seven, regardless of the order, the
22 witnesses called in the first three or four days, and
23 that would facilitate our work greatly.
24 Thank you.
25 MR. NICE: My colleagues have been working on
1 the list this very morning, and I think a fax is being
2 prepared at this very moment, or pretty well.
3 JUDGE MAY: Very well, and if the Trial
4 Chamber could have a copy of it, please.
5 MR. NICE: Certainly.
6 JUDGE MAY: I'm going to deal next with a
7 ruling arising from the discussion yesterday concerning
8 the dossier of evidence.
9 There is a need to clarify the issues in this
10 case, in the judgement of the Trial Chamber, and to
11 determine what issues are in dispute and what are not.
12 The purpose for doing this is in order to secure, as we
13 must, a fair and expeditious trial, "fair" meaning
14 fair, of course, to both sides.
15 The dossier which the Prosecution have
16 produced can be of assistance in this regard and can be
17 of assistance in clarifying the issues relating to the
18 attacks on the various villages. We do not propose at
19 the moment to rule on whether the dossier or any part
20 of it should be admitted, but we do think it not
21 unreasonable, in a trial of this size and complexity,
22 that the Defence should play its part in clarifying the
23 issues for the parties and for the Trial Chamber.
24 Accordingly, we propose to make use of our
25 powers under Rules 89(C) and 90(G) and make an order
1 generally in this way: First, we formally order that
2 the Tulica dossier and the report of the investigator
3 be disclosed to the Defence. We shall order that
4 within 14 days, the Defence are to indicate what
5 material in the dossier is not in dispute, what
6 material is in dispute, and the grounds upon which it
7 is disputed. I referred just then to the dossier. I
8 mean to include in that the investigator's report. So
9 the Defence must indicate what's in dispute and what
10 isn't in the dossier and the report, and that should be
11 done by the 2nd of July.
12 We shall then hear, on the 8th of July, the
13 parties in oral argument as to what evidence may be
14 admitted and what witnesses should be called, and the
15 purpose of this order is that the matter should be
16 further clarified for the Trial Chamber to determine
17 the admissibility of the evidence, and the purpose
18 being to expedite the trial, as far as possible, and to
19 concentrate the evidence on those matters which are
20 really in dispute.
21 That order will be put into writing. But
22 meanwhile the parties, having heard it, can act upon
24 If, of course, there was any agreement upon
25 these matters between the parties, that would be better
2 MR. NICE: Your Honour, may I definitely
3 remind you that on the 6th, 7th, and 8th, I will not be
4 here, for what that matters. I have to be elsewhere
5 for the entire week, and on that particular day I have
6 to be at someone's graduation, so I shall definitely
7 not be here.
8 This has very much been my application, and
9 I'm quite happy to leave matters in the hands of
10 others, but if it were otherwise, all the same to the
11 Trial Chamber, and if those days were fully occupied by
12 evidence the following Monday afternoon, 8, 9, 10, 11,
13 12, that will be a day that I will be here.
14 JUDGE MAY: We'll make it the 12th, then, if
15 that's the next sitting day.
16 MR. NICE: Thank you very much.
17 JUDGE MAY: We'll adjourn now until the next
18 sitting, which I shall be reminded of. The 6th.
19 (Trial Chamber confers)
20 JUDGE MAY: The next hearing day is the 6th
21 of July at 2.30.
22 I'm reminded by Judge Bennouna that we have
23 at the moment only one copy of the dossier.
24 MR. NICE: There should be more.
25 JUDGE MAY: Yes, three.
1 Does anybody else want to raise anything?
2 MR. KOVACIC: Your Honour, (interpretation) in
3 view of the fact that we have moved it from the 8th to
4 the 12th, may we get two days as well? You said until
5 the 2nd of July. Could you allow us until the 4th or
6 5th of July to submit what we need to submit?
7 JUDGE MAY: The 5th of July.
8 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at
9 12.30 p.m., to be reconvened on
10 Tuesday, the 6th day of July, 1999,
11 at 2.30 p.m.