1 Tuesday, 19 September 2006
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The accused Pusic not present in court]
5 [The witness entered court]
6 --- Upon commencing at 2.16 p.m.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Registrar, please call the
9 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, Your Honour. Case
10 number IT-04-74-T, the Prosecutor versus Prlic et al.
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. I'd like to greet
12 everyone on this Tuesday, 19th of September, 2006. I would like to say
13 good afternoon to the Prosecution. We have the entire Prosecution team
14 today. I would like to greet the Defence counsel and the accused and I am
15 talking to Mr. Pusic. He is not unfortunately here today, I wish him
16 well. But his counsel are here in the courtroom. We hope he will get
17 well very soon and that he will be back with us in the near future.
18 With respect to the hearing today, I will give the floor in a few
19 minutes to Ms. Nozica. We'll have 20 minutes for further
21 With respect to the schedule for this week, following the expert
22 witness we'll have one witness whom I will not name because he will have
23 protection measures -- protective measures under Rule 89. The Prosecution
24 will take ten minutes, and then the Defence will have one hour. Then
25 we'll have a further witness. The Prosecution had envisaged initially two
1 hours and half, but from what I hear the Prosecution will only use up 30
2 minutes and the Defence will have two hours and 30 minutes for
4 As for the next witness after that, the Prosecution has envisaged
5 150 minutes for direct examination. The Defence will receive 150 minutes
6 too. And with respect to witness number 3, and again I will not name the
7 witness, we have decided to grant Mr. Praljak 25 additional minutes on top
8 of the time granted to the other accused. That is to say that in total
9 Mr. Praljak will have 50 minutes. In other words, in total the Defence
10 will have three hours for witness number 3 on the list of the Prosecutor.
11 As for number 4, and once again I'm not going to name him for
12 reasons of protective measures, the Prosecution has envisaged 10 minutes
13 for direct examination and the Defence will have one hour.
14 Let me specify with respect to this planning that if we do not
15 waste any time and if we all respect these time limits, it's very well
16 possible that the witness who is currently at number 4, that it's possible
17 for us to be able -- the witness on Wednesday, and this will enable us not
18 to sit on Thursday. But of course this will depend on all of you.
19 That's for the schedule for this week. The Chamber's legal
20 officer has told me that for the record we need to give the names of the
21 witnesses, but I do not believe, as far as I'm concerned, that this is
22 necessary, because the Defence has received the schedule of the
23 Prosecution, and we just need to cross-reference numbers 1, 2 and 3 and 4
24 with the schedule provided by the Prosecution, because otherwise I would
25 have had to move into private session, and this would have lost us further
1 precious minutes.
2 Without further ado, I'm now going to give the floor to Ms. Nozica
3 for 20 minutes.
4 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Thank you, and good day,
5 Your Honours.
6 WITNESS: WILLIAM TOMLJANOVICH [Resumed]
7 Cross-examination by Ms. Nozica:
8 Q. Good day, Mr. Tomljanovich.
9 A. Good day.
10 Q. In your report P 09545, we won't look at it now, in points from 50
11 to 65, you carried out an analysis of the laws pertaining to the army, the
12 decree on the armed forces of the 3rd of -- of the 3rd of July, and a
13 decision on the basic principles of the organisation of defence from
14 September. Do you remember that? I haven't heard your answer.
15 A. Yes, I do remember that.
16 Q. As during the examination on the 7th of September, 2006, you spoke
17 of the powers of the head of the defence office in relation to the armed
18 forces. May we look at Exhibit P 000586, page 1. And to remind you, that
19 is the decision on the basic organisation of the defence department.
20 On page 1 in Croatian and on page 3 in English the legal basis of
21 this decision is stated. That's page 2 in Croatian because page 1 is just
22 a title page. It's page 3 in English. Page 2 in Croatian, please. It's
23 efficient for the witness to see the page in Croatian. Yes.
24 We can now look at the first page in Croatian, and here on the
25 first page we see the legal basis for this decision. We can look at it
1 together. It says: "Pursuant to Articles 11 and 29 of the decree on the
2 armed forces, I hereby issue a decision."
3 Is this the legal basis for this decision?
4 A. Yes. That's what it says here in the preamble.
5 Q. Would you agree with me if I read Article 11 to you, which is the
6 basis for this decision, so we don't have to look at the decree on the
7 armed forces, but I will read it to you and you will agree with me because
8 I believe you discussed it in your report. It states: "In order to carry
9 out the tasks from Article 11, paragraph 2 of this decree, as part of the
10 defence department the Main Staff shall be established."
11 So the second paragraph is important, and it reads as
12 follows: "The organisation of the Main Staff shall be prescribed by the
13 Supreme Command of the armed forces who shall appoint the leading persons
14 in the Main Staff."
15 Is that correct? I didn't show you Article 11 of the decree on
16 armed forces, but I assume you remember it. So is this correct?
17 A. Well, I don't remember the wording specifically, but this seems to
18 be my recollection of what it says.
19 Q. Very well. We'll have a look at the decree later on and we'll
20 come back to this if need be.
21 May we look now at page 3 of this decision in Croatian. It's page
22 6 in English. This is the page on which Article 9 begins. A page further
23 in Croatian, please. The next page, Article 9. Yes. Yes, here it is,
24 B. That's page 6 in English, I think, but we can begin while we're
1 According to -- well, now we've lost it in Croatian. We had it
2 just a moment ago.
3 JUDGE TRECHSEL: We don't have in English either, so there's no
5 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] I said it's page 6 in English. Yes.
6 Now we can all see it.
7 Q. According to the provisions of Article 9, paragraph 3, the chief
8 of the Main Staff shall be responsible to -- according to Article 9,
9 paragraph 3, is the chief of the Main Staff responsible to the head of the
10 defence department in relation to all administrative tasks and as regards
11 issues relating to the budget and material supplies and to consumption and
12 general organisation of civilian life? Is that what it says here?
13 A. Yes. And the last clause there which I think you may have missed
14 is the wartime organisation of the armed forces. So, yes, everything you
15 said plus the last couple of words there, "and the wartime organisation of
16 the armed forces."
17 Q. Yes. Wartime and peacetime organisation. That's what it says
18 here. I think I read it all.
19 A. Well, that's what it says, in any event.
20 Q. Please, according to Article 9, paragraph 4, "the chief of the
21 Main Staff shall be directly responsible to the president of the Croatian
22 Community of Herceg-Bosna for all issues relating to the Supreme Command,
23 unit organisation, strategic and operative plans and the use of the armed
24 forces in time of war or peace." Is that what it says?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. In paragraph 7 of the same article, the one beginning "Brigade
2 commanders," the last paragraph, this prescribes the relation between the
3 brigade commanders and the president of the HZ HB, the head of the defence
4 department, and the chief of the Main Staff. Does it follow from this
5 provision that the brigade commanders are subordinate to and responsible
6 to the head of the defence department for all administrative tasks and
7 issues of budget, material, supplies, consumption, and the overall
8 organisation of life and the organisation of armed forces both in
9 peacetime and in wartime? Does that follow from this article?
10 A. Well, that follows from the third paragraph.
11 Q. Yes. All right. Yes, it does follow from the third, but here
12 it's specified that brigade commanders are mentioned. As regards command
13 and the use of the armed forces, are the brigade commanders subordinate
14 and responsible to the chief of the Main Staff?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Very well. Thank you. Let's now take a look at the document that
17 we didn't see a moment ago. P 00588. This is the decree on the armed
18 forces of the Croatian Community of Herceg-Bosna. And while waiting for
19 it to turn up in e-court, I'll just remind you that the powers of the head
20 of the defence department, which stem from the decree on armed forces and
21 refer to mobilisation, read as follows -- if you want to look at it we
22 will, but listen to me. It says: "For the preparation and carrying out
23 of mobilisation of the armed forces the following shall be
24 responsible ..." That's Article 13 of this decree, "... The head of the
25 defence department for the preparation and carrying out of the
1 mobilisation of the armed forces."
2 My question to you is: Are these the powers described in Article
3 9, paragraph 3, of the decision on the basic organisation that we have
4 just seen, or are these powers relating to the use of the armed forces?
5 We can look at Article 13. We have this decree before us.
6 Article 13. Excuse me. Actually, it's page 13 in Croatian and 00300135
7 in English. That's Article 38. 13 in English. 13 in English and 003 --
8 THE INTERPRETER: 13 in Croatian, interpreter's correction.
9 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] The Article 38, page 13 in Croatian.
10 Now you have it in English, so we can take a look at it. "Persons
11 responsible for the preparation and execution of mobilisation of the armed
12 forces shall be," and I'll read just the part referring to the head of the
13 HVO defence department, he's responsible for preparation and execution of
14 mobilisation of the armed forces. And my question was: Are these the
15 competencies provided for in the article -- the paragraph of the decision
16 that we have just seen? Did
17 you understand my question?
18 A. Well, I'm not entirely sure if I did. If what you're asking is,
19 is this the so the of thing that can be seen in the prior article. As far
20 as I know it could be the sorts of powers they're talking about, although
21 this is dealing specifically with mobilisation. But it doesn't seem to
22 be, at least not in my opinion, in direct contradiction.
23 Q. Very well. That's what I wanted to hear from you. That's what I
24 asked you.
25 In the same decree, Article 41, on page 13. Yes, we have them
1 both now. In order to save time, I will ask you the following: In
2 Article 31 of the same --
3 THE INTERPRETER: 41, interpreter's correction.
4 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] -- of the same decree, the
5 competencies of the defence department are described relating to supplying
6 the armed forces with materiel. Are these the competencies described in
7 Article 9, paragraph 3, referring to the head of the defence department,
8 or are those competencies relating to the use of the armed forces?
9 A. Uh-huh.
10 Q. What does "supplying" mean?
11 A. Well, taking care of and providing material, yes.
12 Q. Yes. So do you say that these are the powers that the head of the
13 defence department has pursuant to the decree, Article 9, paragraph 3, the
14 decree we just read a little while ago? Do you want me to read you --
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. -- that again?
17 A. No, that's fine. These are the sorts of things that I would
18 understand that the head of the defence department is supposed to be
20 Q. In Article 7 of the decision on ranks, we won't look at it but
21 please listen to me, promotion to a higher rank and transfer as well as
22 uniforms fall within the competence of the defence department, and they
23 confer rank on non-commissioned officers. So is this in accordance with
24 the decree that we have just read, or are these competencies relating to
25 the use of the armed forces? So conferring the rank of an active,
1 non-commissioned officer, is this a competency that the head of the
2 defence department has, according to the decree on organisation. Mr.
3 Tomljanovich, you said you are not a lawyer. We are talking about
4 ministerial and procedural competencies of the head of the defence
5 department. I'm only asking you whether these were the competencies he
6 had pursuant to the decision on the basics of the organisation of the
7 defence department.
8 A. I should also add I'm not a military officer, but these sorts of
9 things would seem to follow from the decision, in my opinion.
10 Q. When you were asked questions about this, you did say that you
11 were not a military expert, but you did leave open the possibility that
12 the head of the defence department was directly superior to the brigades.
13 You didn't actually affirm this, but you left open the possibility, so I'm
14 trying to go through the competencies of the head of the defence
15 department with you.
16 In Article 34 of the decree on armed forces, and this is quite a
17 contentious article so please listen to me first and then we'll take a
18 look at it. Article 34. We need to go back a little bit. It's Article
19 34. The competencies of the head of the defence department are listed to
20 appoint and relieve of their duty -- please listen to me first. I'm
21 putting my question now. In Article 34 on the decree on armed forces the
22 competencies of the head of the defence department are listed to appoint
23 and relieve of their duty other officers and commanders, junior officers,
24 except for high-ranking officers.
25 Would this be the competence provided for by that decision that we
1 looked at, Article 9, paragraph 3, or are these -- please listen to me
2 first. I will not deny you the possibility of commenting on Article 34,
3 but listen to my question.
4 The powers referring to the appointment and dismissal of officers,
5 are they among the powers provided for in Article 9, paragraph 3, of the
6 decision on the basics of the organisation of the defence department? Are
7 these administrative tasks, please tell me. And if you can't reply,
8 please say you can't. There's no need to dwell on this because it speaks
9 for itself.
10 A. Yes. I think it's right that this speaks for itself, and the
11 question of whether it's not administrative depends or your definition of
12 what's administrative, but I do think the article speaks for itself as far
13 as the powers are concerned, or -- this Article 34.
14 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Please be more precise. You say
15 that Article 34 speaks for itself. What does it mean?
16 THE WITNESS: Well, it clearly says at which levels -- who is to
17 appoint officers at which particular levels and whose duty that is.
18 Appoint and relieve.
19 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Your Honour, by your leave I ask for
20 additional time precisely because of this Article 34 of the decree,
21 because I feel that it is linguistically quite erroneously formulated, but
22 logically the interpretation of this Article 34 is completely different.
23 Q. You were presented on the 7th of September here in the courtroom
24 the powers relating to appointment and relieving officers in higher
25 positions as well as the powers of the head of the defence department. So
1 please take a good look at Article 34, and tell me logically who is
2 appointed or relieved by the head of the defence department. Can we take
3 a look at it together.
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Article 34, paragraph 1 says: "Commanders of the armed forces
6 shall be appointed and relieved of duty ..." That's a general provision
7 relating to all commanders. Would you agree?
8 A. No, it was my understanding -- and I do agree it's drafted very
9 badly and that's a problem with the drafting. It's my understanding that
10 the president of the HZ HB goes with the sentence before it or what's
11 preceded by the colon. What's with the colon preceding it, that it would
12 be the president of the HZ HB who commands -- or who appoints and
13 dismisses commanders of the armed forces, and it would be the president --
14 or the head of the Department of Defence who would appoint and relieve
15 brigade commanders and officers at higher ranks.
16 Well, maybe not, actually, now that I look at the final paragraph.
17 Yeah, because if you look at the time paragraph, then -- hmm.
18 Q. Yes. Yourself now say maybe no.
19 A. Yeah.
20 Q. I will show you evidence supporting my assertion. So please look
21 at the English version. "Other officers and commanders, junior officers
22 and other military personnel shall also be appointed to or relieved of
23 posts," and so on. You say -- in English it says unspecified in the
24 original. Do you see it in English? But that's because if you look at
25 this article logically it follows that the president of the HZ HB appoints
1 commanders of brigades and high-ranking officers, whereas the head of the
2 defence department and commanders appointed by him appoints other officers
3 and commanders, junior officers, and military personnel, commissioned and
4 non-commissioned officers. Would that be a logical interpretation?
5 A. That would also be a logical interpretation, and I will add that
6 it's written very poorly in the original Croatian.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Counsel Nozica, could you read
8 paragraph 1, 2, 3, yes, paragraph 3 in your own language so that the
9 interpreters can translate, because we saw that the translation in
10 English, as we see it in the document, has a question mark, and I'd like
11 to have a control effected by the interpreters here from the booth. So
12 read out that paragraph slowly and we'll listen carefully to the
14 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I must admit that the
15 paragraph is properly translated, but this dilemma in the translation
16 should be linked to the representative of the defence department and the
17 commander that he authorises. So he appoints the other officers.
18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Counsel, I have a problem
19 because the English translation that we're looking at here is an
20 approximate one because they've placed a question mark and
21 said, "Unspecified in the original." So what I would like to do now is
22 listen to our interpreters and hear how they're going to interpret
23 paragraph 3, which has been written out in B/C/S. So it's not the English
24 text that leaves room for doubt, it is the B/C/S text that is not quite
25 clear. So would you read out the text, and we're going to listen to the
1 interpretation. It will take two or three minutes. But it's
2 interesting -- it's important for you.
3 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Your Honour, yes, I know it is, and
4 that is why I asked for additional time.
5 I'll start reading from the beginning, Article 34 from the
6 beginning, because only in that way will we be able to understand the
7 portion that you say is not correctly translated. Now, the first sentence
8 reads's follows: "Commanders of the armed forces shall be appointed and
9 relieved of duty," and then there's a colon and a new line, bullet point:
10 "By the president of the HZ HB." Then there's a full stop. Then
11 after that we come to the following: "Commanders of the brigades and
12 high-ranking officers," then once again a colon and a bullet point, "shall
13 be appointed or replaced by the head of the defence department or by
14 commanders," and then it says, "the other officers and commanders. Other
15 officers and commanders, junior officers, military officials and to
16 officers and junior officer positions of military employees in the armed
18 Now, the colons put in the wrong place have created this dilemma,
19 the dilemma that I tried to clear up with Mr. Tomljanovich. However, I
20 can show Mr. Tomljanovich with respect to the authorisation which
21 allegedly, according to him, in court is what the representative of the
22 defence to appoint officers at high-ranking positions which not -- was not
23 the case both de facto and de jure. So can we just clear up this dilemma,
24 and can we take a look for a moment at 500289. It is the first --
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Before we examine that, we see
1 that the English translation did not correspond to the text in the B/C/S,
2 because the text in the B/C/S states that the commanding officers, and
3 then there's a colon and a bullet point, are appointed by the president of
4 the HZ HB and by the brigade commanders.
5 So there are two possibilities. According to the French
6 translation, it is properly indicated that the commanding officers, that
7 is to say that can be superior officers, brigade commanders, or
8 lower-ranking officers, and the manner in which they it are appointed can
9 come from various authorities. The president, that's quite normal because
10 he's the Supreme Commander of the army, or by the brigade commanders. So
11 that's how we can understand the text. But you can, of course, put
12 forward another opinion.
13 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Well, I will propose my own reading which does
14 not entirely coincide with that of Judge Antonetti I see a first rule
15 which says commanders of the armed forces will be appointed et cetera by
16 the president. Now the question is, what are the commander are of the
17 armed forces? I think there were four regions if I understand correctly,
18 and I think that these commanders are those four of a region.
19 I'm not quite sure whether these are also identical with the
20 brigades. If they are, then it's still more complicated, because the next
21 paragraph says that brigade commanders, as opposed to commanders of the
22 armed forces, whatever, are appointed by the minister of the defence.
23 I think this entire article is a model of completely failed
24 attempts at regulation. It is not possible to make any sense by reading
25 it. If one were to study this, one would have only one possibility: One
1 would have to study every appointment made in the relevant time and find
2 out exactly what happened.
3 This text, in my view, is completely useless. I'm sorry to say
4 so, but I am duty-bound to be honest.
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] We're going to have an
6 intervention here from the accused.
7 THE ACCUSED PETKOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I would like
8 to be of assistance to clarify Article 34 in the sense in which it was
9 applied. We can understand it in one way or another but this is the
10 truth, that the Supreme Commander appointed and relieved of duty
11 commanders of brigades, he did that, and high-ranking officers. Now,
12 which high-ranking officers I'll explain. The commanders of operative
13 zones, all the assistant commanders of operative zones, the chief of the
14 Main Staffs and all his assistants and heads. Those are the officers
15 appointed by the Supreme Commander. So this goes down to the level of
16 brigade commander and up to the Main Staff, the chief of the Main Staff.
17 That is the interpretation of Article 34 and that's what was done. The
18 representative of the Defence explained everything lower down. The other
19 assistants, junior officers, and so on and forth.
20 I think there was a misunderstanding before. So that is the truth
21 and that is what happened. The Supreme Commander appoints brigade
22 commanders as the lowest officer and -- or, rather, highest officer and
23 goes to the commanding officers, all the assistant officers of the zones,
24 and all the heads in the Main Staff, all the chiefs of the Main Staff.
25 All the rest are of a lower rank and they are appointed by the
1 representative of the defence department, various employees, clerks, and
2 so on. So that is an interpretation of the article and I think that all
3 those people sitting here with me will bear me out. Thank you.
4 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, with the Court's
5 permission, I fully agree with the interpretation given by my colleague
6 Counsel Nozica and what my client General Petkovic has said, and there was
7 no dilemma as far as I was concerned when I asked this witness my
8 questions that the appointment of higher ranking officers and they are
9 enumerated in the first part of the article relates to the president of
10 the HZ HB. It is he who appoints -- the Supreme Commander who appoints
11 these high-ranking officers.
12 Now, when we came to examine the article further, we came to the
13 English text which was completely erroneously translated and we had a very
14 similar debate, and I interrupted that debate by making a conclusion. I
15 drew the conclusion which was essential for my cross-examination and that
16 is that the Main Staff in no way took part in the appointment and release
17 of duty of those high-ranking officers. So I think that the
18 interpretation given by my colleague Counsel Nozica is the right one and
19 that we should correct the English text.
20 THE INTERPRETER: Could the speakers kindly be asked to speak
22 THE ACCUSED STOJIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I agree with
23 General Petkovic Counsel. That was what it was like in practice. That
24 was how it was implemented and I stand by that. Perhaps on certain
25 occasions there might have been certain slight differences or oscillations
1 given the present situation but in 99.99 per cent of the cases, as
2 General Petkovic said, this was how it was implemented and applied.
3 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Yes. Thank you for all those
4 interventions especially General Petkovic for his assistance intervention
5 because he in fact testified about that. I can't say whether it was so or
6 not but I can say that -- all I can say is that I'm debating this point
7 because on the 7th of September, on page 6316, lines 20 to 23, the
8 interpretation was that the representative of the defence department
9 appoints -- the head of the defence department appoints and relieves of
10 duty high-ranking ...
11 JUDGE TRECHSEL: I would like to ask a question, and I formally
12 put it to the witness, although we seem to have a phase in the proceedings
13 where the accused function as experts and witnesses, and for the record,
14 we don't fail to notice this, that this is a bit special, but it is
16 Now, the defence -- the Minister of Defence nominates all the
17 other officers and I think that is colonel and from colonel down. Who,
18 and this is my question, who proposes these nominations? Because
19 according to my experience, the role of the Minister of Defence is a
20 relatively formal one and practically it is normally in the line of
21 command that -- where it is possible to assess the qualities of officer --
22 officers that the proposals are made which in the large majority of cases
23 is the decisive point.
24 THE WITNESS: Is that a question for me?
25 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Yes.
1 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the witness, please.
2 THE WITNESS: Yes. That I do not know off the top of my head, who
3 made the nominations. Although I will add in addition to all of this that
4 the longer I look at the original Croatian of Article 34 the more I'm
5 convinced you can come up with either interpretation for it and that it's
6 a problem in the wording of the original, not a problem in the
8 MR. SCOTT: Mr. President, I'd like to get in on all this fun that
9 we're having, because everyone just pops up apparently and can just state
10 their opinion whether they're under oath or testifying or not.
11 In the last few minutes among other things there's been different
12 usages of the certainly Supreme Commander --
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I was just about to give you the
14 floor, Mr. Scott, because we would like to hear the Prosecution's views
15 concerning Article 34 as well.
16 MR. SCOTT: Well, the Prosecution's view, Your Honour, is that we
17 will argue -- just as counsel's -- now all we've done for the last 10 or
18 15 minutes is argue positions. There's been test -- there's been no
19 essential evidence. Counsel have made their arguments. The accused have
20 stood up and made their arguments. The Prosecution when the time comes
21 will make its arguments in our closing brief. It's our submission that
22 our interpretation is that the president interpret -- the president
23 appoints the commanders in chief, the types of persons such as Mr. Praljak
24 and Mr. Petkovic and the operative zone commanders and the defence --
25 Department of Defence, head of the department of Defence represents --
1 appoints the brigade commanders and those next highest ranking officers
2 and that's our position. So as long as everyone is stating a position
3 we'll state our position too.
4 I also want to point out, however, that in the last 15 or 20
5 minutes the term Supreme Commander has been used in a number of different
6 ways by different people in the courtroom that are not consistent. Mr.
7 Petkovic describe it -- used in one way, somebody else used it a different
8 way. It's been used at least three different ways. We don't know what
9 Supreme Commander means, according to the various people that have used
10 it. But I suggested, Your Honour, that we're way past questioning this
11 witness. All we're doing now is popping up like gophers ought of their
12 holes expressing their views and opinions on what this means and I think
13 we can probably finish with this witness.
14 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Witness, we have heard different
15 interpretations now of that particular article. According to Counsel
16 Nozica, there is confusion. The accused, I assume as experts in the
17 matter, have provided us with their interpretation, and we have heard the
18 Prosecutor as well. Now I have a brief question for you myself.
19 During your research, did you look at the different appointments
20 ever, zone commanders or brigade commanders, and on the basis your
21 research into that that you could give us your opinion of the practical
22 implementation of that article, that provision?
23 THE WITNESS: I'm afraid I can't tell you anything very specific.
24 I believe I have seen appointments of zone commanders in the past. That's
25 not something I looked at for this particular report, although I would
1 recommend I believe that is among the documents which are in the
2 possession of the OTP, those appointments and other appointments, and I
3 would just recommend that instead of worrying about what the intent of
4 Article 34 is that we just simply look at the actual pattern of
5 appointments insofar as we know them. But off the top of my head I don't
6 remember who appointed whom in the military.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] We're going to end quickly now
8 because we've already surpassed the 20 minutes.
9 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. Had I not been
10 interrupted, I would have concluded with the several examples that each of
11 you are talking about, and they are all Prosecution exhibits, and that's
12 why I am amazed at the Prosecution's stand today. But we'll go through
13 the documents very quickly now, and when a military expert comes in, if
14 necessary, if this subject is put to him then we'll be able to clarify it
15 when a military expert comes in.
16 But may we have 2D 00141 placed on e-court, please. I'd like to
17 say this is Prosecution Exhibit P 00661. It is the appointment of the
18 commanders of the operative zones, the decree on appointment, and that is
19 precisely what Judge Trechsel referred to.
20 So here we have a decision. It says pursuant to Article 34,
21 paragraph 1 of the decree on the armed forces. So that is the president
22 of the HZ HB and his authorisation. The following are appointed to
23 wartime establishment: Commanders of operative zones, and then you can
24 see for Eastern Herzegovina, Northwestern Herzegovina, and so on, and it
25 is signed by Mate Boban at the bottom. So the proper interpretation of
1 Article 34 is borne out by this. It is the authorisation of the president
2 of the HZ HB.
3 We are now going to look at 2D 00143 that's the next document for
4 the record it is Prosecution Exhibit P 03054. Now, while we're still
5 looking at this document we can look at the date and note that it is the
6 20th of October, 1992, and I purposely selected documents from different
7 time periods so that we can see, as Mr. Tomljanovich says, that model.
8 Here we have it on our screens. That is the -- the date is the 1st of
9 July, 1993. Once again pursuant to Article 34, paragraph 1 of the decree
10 on the armed forces in the HVO Brigade of Citluk the following are
11 appointed, Stojan Musa, commander of the brigade, brigade commander. So
12 Mate Boban president of the HZ HB is appointing a brigade commander.
13 May we have the next document now, please. 2D 00144. And that is
14 also a Prosecution document P 03363. And I purposely just selected
15 Prosecution documents although there are others too. We haven't got time
16 to look through them all. Yes, that's the document. Can we have look at
17 the date. I think we have it in English, please. It is the 10th of July
18 once again. Once again the President Mate Boban is appointing Alojz
19 Djerek on the same basis of the same legal regulations as brigade
20 commander, isn't that right?
21 With the Court's permission I have two more documents to show. I
22 think it would be useful because of the discussion we've had and dilemmas
23 and I have the decision in order where the head of the defence department
24 is appointing someone so we can see what his duties were. The document is
25 2D 00145 now. That's the next document, and it is Prosecution Exhibit P
2 The date is the 16th of August. That's right. We have the new
3 document in Croatian but not in English yet but the date is the 16th of
4 August. Can we lower the document a little. Yes, 16th of August once
5 again. Pursuant to the provisions of Article 34, paragraph 1, item 1 of
6 the decree of the armed forces, President Mate Boban appoints to the Rama
7 Brigade Marinko Zelenika as brigade commander.
8 Isn't that right Mr. Tomljanovich, brigade commander here we have
9 his appointment.
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Now the last document from this series it is 2D 00146. And I'd
12 also like to mention that it is a Prosecution Exhibit P 06164.
13 This is a document dated the 27th of October, 1993, this time. So
14 we have looked at documents spanning a whole year. Once again we have
15 pursuant to the provisions of Article 34, paragraph 1, item 1 of the
16 decree on the armed forces, the president of the Croatian Republic of
17 Herceg-Bosna. So here once again we have a change of function, of post,
18 appoints to the Marichacha [phoen] Brigade, Ivana Saskor [phoen], as
19 brigade commander. And the final document, the appointment by the head of
20 the defence department, let's see whether it was in conformity with
21 Article 34 fully. 2D 00142 is the number of the exhibit. 2D 00142 is the
22 number again. It is a Prosecution document P 0698.
23 Here you have it on the screen. And may we have a look at the
24 last page now, please. Or we needn't -- leaf through it if you believe me
25 it is the head of defence department HZ HB, Bruno Stojic, who signed it,
1 and here once again we see pursuant to article 34, para 1, item 2 of the
2 decree on the armed forces. So that is the logical interpretation of
3 Article 34 whereby the head of the defence department and the commanders
4 that he authorises appoint the other officers and commanders, junior
5 officers, military staff, and so on and so forth.
6 So this decision, this order bears that out. And the date is the
7 3rd of November, 1990 ... [as interpreted]. We see who Mr. Bruno Stojic
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] And we can now ask the expert
10 witness what he that is say about all that.
11 Counsel Nozica has shown you a number of orders of appointment
12 signed by Mate Boban appointing different high-ranking officers, brigade
13 commanders, et cetera, and the last document, which is 2D 000142, was the
14 appointment once again by Mr. Stojic with respect to different officers,
15 and it -- in a brigade. The different services, operations, security,
16 intelligence, logistics. The different departments. So what do you have
17 to do say to that, Witness? Does that comply with your vision or not?
18 What can you tell us?
19 THE WITNESS: Well, I think these documents, first of all, they
20 are as Ms. Nozica said. I can confirm that. I'm sure these aren't the
21 only appointments we're going to see, and if this is the general pattern,
22 this is the general pattern. All I know is what's in the documents, and
23 I'll state again that if this tends to be the general pattern in the
24 appointments, then that's what we should consider it to have been and I
25 would imagine though that these aren't the final appointments that we've
1 seen, but in this instance, yes, it follows a general pattern. In these
2 instances, four or five instances.
3 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation]
4 Q. And now my last question. This general pattern is that the
5 commanders of the operative zones, the commanders of the brigades, which
6 means commanders and officers high-ranking commanders and officers,
7 according to this general pattern were appointed by the president of the
8 HZ HB. Isn't that right?
9 A. From these orders, yes.
10 Q. Okay. And the other officers, junior officers, lower-ranking
11 staff was the head of the defence department that appointed them. Does
12 that emanate from what we've just seen?
13 A. Yes, that's what's going on in this last document you have up on
14 the screen right now.
15 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour, I thank you
16 for the time accorded me. I have overstepped my time limit considerably
17 but I consider that it was important to clear up that dilemma. Thank you
18 once again.
19 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Counsel Alaburic.
20 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I would sincerely like
21 to thank you for allowing Counsel Nozica to conduct the cross-examination
22 and that she wanted to deal with the interpretation of what we were
23 dealing with, not with putting right translations. I think at a correct
24 reading of rules and regulations is the best way of going about it, and I
25 think that the documents that we discussed a moment ago showed what I
1 wanted to show during my cross-examination, and that is that when we come
2 to important issues related to the armed forces that decisions were made
3 without the Main Staff and that the Main Staff was not the only
4 communication link with the armed forces. Thank you.
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes. Thank you. The Judges
6 will appreciate and make note of what you said. We will have other
7 witnesses, military experts, and I'm sure we'll have ample opportunity to
8 about back to that famous article, Article 34, and discuss it further.
9 If there are no questions from the Prosecution, since the Judges
10 do not have any questions of their own, I would like to thank you, sir,
11 for spending a number of days here in court and answering the questions
12 put to you by one and all. It wasn't an easy job, I am sure, for you to
13 do, but you responded to the questions asked of you. So on behalf of the
14 Judges and on behalf of Mr. Prandler who unfortunately is absent today but
15 will be back with us tomorrow, he -- following Rule 15 bis, I would like
16 to thank you for coming, and we wish you to take up your duties again in
17 the OTP so that after having completed your testimony you can continue to
18 contact the OTP, and the usher will escort you out of the courtroom.
19 Thank you.
20 THE WITNESS: Thank you, Your Honour.
21 [The witness withdrew]
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I turn to the Defence counsel
23 for the tendering of exhibits. I assume, Counsel Nozica, that you would
24 like to tender into evidence the documents that you showed. Would you?
25 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Yes. Thank you, Your Honour. Not
1 only these documents but during the cross-examination I had about seven
2 documents previously and the documents today. But I'd like to ask you the
3 following. I know that we -- some exhibits have already been tendered by
4 the Prosecutor during the examination-in-chief, so the Defence of
5 Mr. Stojic would like to state, taking those documents in total, with the
6 acceptance of documents related to the Official Gazette, the example --
7 because this witness could not confirm, was unable to confirm any of the
8 important points pursuant to your ruling on the introduction of evidence,
9 admittance of evidence, and because all the meetings that were held which
10 presented by the expert witness we have on the Prosecution's list as
11 witnesses who attended those meetings, and therefore I would like to ask
12 you if that is possible. I'm speaking in my own name. I don't know
13 whether my other colleagues will join in, that possibly in due course when
14 we have more time we can tender the documents we wish to enter into
15 evidence and to challenge any documents either in written form or orally as
16 you rule.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Therefore you have
18 comments about the exhibits that the Prosecution wishes to tender but
19 you'll have to do this later because we don't have any time for this
21 Mr. Kovacic, you are on your feet.
22 MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I thought it might be
23 useful to tender the document which was discussed at length, and many
24 sides participated, and this was a result exclusively of the badly drafted
25 Croatian in the original. That's P 0061 or D 00041. My proposal is that
1 Your Honours ask CLSS to revise the translation of Article 34 of this
2 decree. It's evident that the translators themselves were in a dilemma.
3 You remember their question marks. But as a person whose native tongue is
4 Croatian, and Judge Trechsel also observed this, it's an evident example
5 of erroneously drafted legislation. But it's also an example of bad
6 Croatian grammar, because there is no subject or predicate in the
8 Therefore, I propose that Your Honours issue an order to CLSS,
9 because it's very difficult for the interpreters to translate such a text
10 from the booth. So maybe we could ask for a written translation.
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] When the translation is
12 challenged, the rule is that the Chambers will ask CLSS to translate the
13 relevant text. Therefore, I would like to ask the registrar to request a
14 translation of Article 34 of CLSS.
15 I've taken note of the fact that Ms. Nozica is now asking for more
16 time to make comments about a number of documents. With respect to the
17 documents submitted by Mr. Karnavas and by Ms. Pinter, I see that there's
18 a list there. Ms. Pinter.
19 No, sorry. Sorry. I'm talking to Mr. Karnavas's co-counsel.
20 Sorry. My mistake.
21 MS. TOMANOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes. I did submit a list of the
22 exhibits that the defence of Dr. Prlic wishes to tender after the
23 cross-examination of Mr. Tomljanovich. I will read them for the record.
24 1D 00525, 1D 00898, P 00817, that's the Prosecution -- that's a
25 Prosecution document so we tender it under that number. 1D 00820, 1D
1 00821, and there follow two documents which the Defence of
2 General Petkovic allowed us to use, 4D 00022, 4D 00023. And the eighth
3 document is 1D 00918. This is the presidential transcript of the 17th of
4 September, 1992, which was submitted to this Chamber under number P
6 Yesterday, Mr. Karnavas showed this document to Mr. Tomljanovich
7 with translations of certain pages which the OTP did not submit to
8 Your Honours. In line with Your Honours' guidelines, the pages not
9 translated by the OTP have been added by us to this transcript, and we
10 felt that together with all the pages that have already been translated by
11 the OTP we should put them together to make a single document, because
12 this would then be easier for Your Honours to read.
13 I'm only telling you which pages were translated by the Defence
14 team of Dr. Prlic. I will give you the numbers in e-court. These are
15 pages 1D 33007, to 1D 3300190. The next group is 1D 330032 to 1D 330047.
16 And the third group 1D 330060 to 1D 330065.
17 We have another group of pages translated by the OTP but not
18 submitted with Exhibit P 00498. We don't know why. This may have been an
19 omission or an error, but we have included them in the complete
20 translation in e-court, 1D 330048 to 1D 330059.
21 Altogether, this makes some 40 pages which the Defence team of
22 Dr. Prlic translated for you. Thank you.
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you. In order to speed
24 things up and to make things even clearer, I would like to ask Ms. Nozica
25 to look at the document prepared by the Defence of Mr. Prlic. We have a
1 list with the documents tendered, and on the other page we have the
2 documents submitted that the Defence challenged by counsel and the reasons
3 why these documents are challenged. I think this way of going about it is
4 much clearer, but I'm going to give you the floor later this week or this
5 week to tell -- for you to tell us about the documents you're challenging.
6 Let's now move on to the next witness. From what I understand,
7 contrary to what I said before relates -- with respect to witnesses 1, 2,
8 3 and 4, from what I understand we're going to have Witness 2 first,
9 Islamovic from what I understand. Is that the case? I'm asking the
10 Prosecution to confirm that.
11 MR. SCOTT: Mr. Mundis will be addressing that, Your Honour.
12 Before we do that I just want to make sure that the record is clear in
13 terms of the Prosecution position on some of these exhibit matters because
14 a number of different things have been said and I think the Prosecution
15 should also have a fair amount of time to respond.
16 The -- number one, Your Honour, we believe that the witness -- the
17 exhibits tendered through this witness should be admitted through the --
18 by the Prosecution -- or through this Prosecution witness, that it is
19 consistent with ICTY practice for the documents that an expert is used in
20 this way, to be submitted and to be admitted.
21 I also note in this regard that to do otherwise -- but to allow
22 the Defence to tender exhibits through this witness would be completely
23 inconsistent, because apparently on the one than the Defence is saying,
24 well, this witness does not have personal knowledge therefore exhibits
25 can't be admitted. But then they turn around and tender their own
1 documents no different from the Prosecution exhibits and say those should
2 be admitted. Your Honour, you can't -- we can't have two different rules,
3 one for the Defence and one for the Prosecution. So these are all
4 exhibits and materials that have been used by this expert in the
5 preparation of his report and in all respect, Your Honour, with respect to
6 the Chamber we think that all the exhibits tendered through
7 Mr. Tomljanovich by the Prosecution should be admitted.
8 Also, Your Honour, we think it's important to raise and I don't
9 want it to continue any longer without this being addressed it may not be
10 resolved this moment but I want to make the Prosecution position clear,
11 and that is, as the registry has raised, when a Prosecution exhibit
12 numbers are used or when Prosecution exhibits are used, which we don't
13 object to, but they have a P number. And we request, Your Honour, that if
14 a Prosecution document is used that it be admitted under the P number.
15 And I'll tell you why that's important, because at some point we have to
16 continually go back through our records and determine what's been admitted
17 and not admitted, and there is no point for us to tender again a document
18 that has been tendered under a different number. So if it's a number --
19 if the Prosecution has already numbered her exhibit with a P number and
20 the defence wants to use it, which is fine, then we ask that it be
21 admitted and kept with a P number designation so that we know ultimately
22 which of our exhibits have already admitted and we ask the Chamber to
23 consider that and give us further correction on that but again it can't be
24 a situation where the Defence to admit these exhibits but not for the
25 Prosecution, and it'll be clear that the same P number is used so that we
1 don't have to go back later and try to decide which P numbers have been
2 admitted and which ones have not.
3 On an outstanding matter concerning Mr. Tomljanovich, there was a
4 disputed exhibit from -- concerning the Blaskic diary so-called, which is
5 not in fact what it was. This was on exhibit P 01788. It was an excerpt
6 from the Blaskic diary that was used with this witness. First of all, it
7 was not -- it is not the Blaskic diary, as asserted by Defence counsel.
8 This was the minute book, the official minute book of the HVO Central
9 Bosnia operative zone which is authenticated by Blaskic himself in the
10 Blaskic case.
11 Number two, there was issues about this being an excerpt. The
12 entire minute book, the entire minute book is P 01796, which was disclosed
13 to the Defence for the first time on the 11th of February, 2005, and again
14 on the 19th of January, 2006 and was and is on the Prosecution's 65 ter
15 exhibit list.
16 The excerpt itself is P 01788, which was disclosed to the Defence
17 more than two years ago, more than two years ago on the 6th of August,
18 2004, and again on the 19th of January, 2006, and was and is on the
19 Prosecution's 65 ter exhibit list.
20 It was also asserted in the courtroom that the Prosecution in the
21 Blaskic case had denied the authenticity of this document. That is not
22 the case. I have reviewed the Blaskic record. It is not the case.
23 Blaskic submitted it, authenticated it as the minute book of the Central
24 Bosnia operative zone and both parties used in the Blaskic case as an
25 authentic document. So it was not correct that it was disputed by the
1 Prosecution in that case.
2 Finally, Your Honour, I want to note that in connection with the
3 witness Galbraith, the Prosecution has filed today two 92 bis motions
4 related directly related to this witness. One is the -- tenders the
5 transcript of Paddy Ashdown from the Blaskic case, which gives a --
6 directly corroborates Ambassador Galbraith's testimony, talks about his
7 conversation with President Tudjman at a dinner London in 1995 in which
8 Tudjman stated his desires to divide Bosnia with Serbia and drew
9 Mr. Ashdown a map of a divided Bosnia and Herzegovina which is attached to
10 his transcript, that we also -- and if we can go into private
11 session, Your Honour.
12 [Private session]
15 [Open session]
16 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] We are in open session.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] We are in open session.
18 Ms. Nozica, you have the floor.
19 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] I said that we have not tendered any
20 documents because we consider that certain documents used by the expert
21 for his analysis are not exhibits meeting the procedure set out in the
22 instructions issued by Your Honours. So they cannot be admitted into
24 Apart from this, we propose that part of this report, and I'm
25 referring only to the part on which I examined, the part relating to
1 prisoners and camps, from paragraph 258 to 284, not be admitted, because
2 Mr. Tomljanovich said that he did not have most of the documents relating
3 to this area, and in his report he made general assessments from which one
4 could conclude that he analysed all the documents relating to this area.
5 I retain the right to object in writing to every document tendered
6 with Mr. Tomljanovich, through Mr. Tomljanovich, explaining the reasons
7 for our objection. Thank you.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Very quickly,
9 Mr. Kovacic.
10 MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] I will be very brief, Your Honours,
11 but I must respond to some things said by the Prosecutor. As far as I'm
12 concerned, we can be in open session. Oh, we are in open session. I
14 As regards P 1796 mentioned by the Prosecutor, our objections were
15 twofold. The Prosecutor has not responded to our second objection to that
16 document, which was that when preparing for the witness this document was
17 submitted to us only two days before the witness's testimony, and it was
18 not listed in the proofing chart submitted to us for this witness, and
19 that is our objection. It was used as a surprise, and we were unable to
20 prepare for it by checking other documents in the archives and databases
21 we have which would enable us to deal with it.
22 I agree that this document, along with the all the other documents
23 disclosed to us on the 19th of January, '06, in the pre-trial brief was
24 disclosed at that time, but let me remind Your Honours that Your Honours
25 asked that the Prosecutor provide the Court with precise overviews as to
1 what document referred to what count in the indictment and what witness.
2 As we received this document only two weeks ago, we could not anticipate
3 which of the 9.000 or 10.000 documents listed there on the 19th of June
4 the Prosecutor planned to use or not to use through this witness,
5 especially as it was not put on the proofing chart which we got some 10
6 days or a fortnight before the examination of the witness.
7 The methodology to be followed is that the Prosecutor provides us
8 with a proofing chart telling us what document he wishes to use with the
9 witness and what paragraphs in the indictment the witness is testifying
10 to. We can then prepare. In this case, two days prior to the testimony
11 he pulls out this document and puts it on the table. That's why we
12 propose that P 1796 not be admitted, because documents cannot be produced
13 like this at the last moment.
14 I would also like an explanation in order to stick to deadlines.
15 The Prosecutor, as far as I was able to understand, is planning to submit
16 a motion for the adoption of the testimony of witnesses in other cases,
17 Paddy Ashdown in particular, and he mentioned another name, a former US
18 ambassador, but this was in closed session so I won't say the name now.
19 Would the Prosecutor advise us whether he will make this
20 submission in writing so that we can respond, or must we respond to this
21 ad hoc, oral motion?
22 Your Honours, I wanted to intervene before. Now is obviously not
23 the time. I still have certain exhibits where Your Honours told us to add
24 something, but I will wait for a more convenient time. Everything is
25 ready. Thank you. It's an MFI piece of evidence.
1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Mr. Scott, you said
2 that you had filed a 92 bis motion. I suppose it's written motion. It's
3 not just an oral motion. It's -- I suppose it's a written motion, isn't
5 MR. SCOTT: [Previous translation continues] ... the two motions
6 have been filed today as I said as the transcript should show, Your
7 Honour, and of course I understand the Defence will seek to make responses
8 to those, no surprise about that. The final response to Mr. Kovacic, the
9 excerpt P 01788 was additionally disclosed to the Defence on the 30th of
10 August, that it would be used with this witness. It is a page -- the page
11 is themself -- it's about a 2, 3 page document I hardly think that
12 Mr. Kovacic can claim any unfair surprise or prejudice that ample time
13 over the past -- since the 30th of August to prepare to use that document
14 and if he wanted to he could have raised it with the witness at any time.
15 So we don't think that's a proper point. Thank you.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Ibrisimovic then I'll give
17 the floor to Mr. Kovacic. But first Mr. Ibrisimovic.
18 MR. IBRISIMOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President. I
19 only wish to ask for your clear instructions. We started a discussion
20 about documents to be tendered through Mr. Tomljanovich, and then we went
21 off in another direction. I know the other Defence teams wish to say
22 something about this, so shall we do so now or later?
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Well, we're still talking about
24 Witness Tomljanovich. Mr. Kovacic.
25 MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I hesitate to waste
1 time, but I do have to object. My learned friend says he disclosed a
2 document to us on the 30th of August. I don't have my agenda with me, but
3 he didn't say how many days it was before the witness began testifying. I
4 think it was two or three days. My colleague says four. But the point is
5 not the number of pages. We have tens of thousands of documents in our
6 databases, and every document we receive from the Prosecutor when we are
7 told that a certain document is to be used with a certain witness, these
8 documents take only two to five minutes to read, but we have to search
9 through the databases to put the document in context, to see what other
10 documents can be linked to it, to see what event it refers to, and so on
11 and so forth. So I cannot be provided with a document only a few days
12 before a witness is to testify if Your Honours have ruled that I have to
13 be provided with it 15 days before. If a new circumstance arises during
14 examination, then of course you have to produce a document unexpectedly,
15 but this was not the case here. There was no new circumstance arising.
16 The Prosecutor had this document. He did provide us with it in
17 January, but I didn't know what document he would be using. How could I
18 know that? He only provided us with this document four days before. So
19 instead of preparing ahead, we have to keep backtracking. We have limited
20 resources. We don't have an army at our disposal.
21 So I object in principle. There's no reason for this document to
22 have been disclosed only four days before the testimony. There's no
23 justified reason for that.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Two points with respect to the
25 problem you've raised. It's something that we've discussed before many
1 times. In our previous rulings, we've asked the Prosecution when they
2 produce, they submit a document at the last minute we ask them to explain
3 the late disclosure of the document, and when a new document is disclosed
4 to the Defence at the last minute, the Judges want to know why the
5 document is being disclosed so late. But let me make a second point.
6 You are saying that you are not in a position to -- to work fairly
7 if the documents are disclosed to you at the last minute. You say the
8 trial then is not fair. But I'm a bit surprised here, Counsel, because
9 this case has started many years ago. You have had time to prepare your
10 case and your strategy, all the more so since you had to prepare a brief
11 in reply to the brief of the Prosecution before the trial. Therefore,
12 your strategy, your case, should have been well prepared at that time.
13 Furthermore, whilst the Prosecution is bringing their -- its
14 witnesses, you are preparing your own witnesses. We are working on the
15 case as a whole, all of us here, and when a document is disclosed to you
16 at the last minute, even if you don't know the document, you still know
17 your case. You still know your case and, therefore, you should be able to
18 cross-examine that witness with that document without any problem,
19 otherwise that would prejudice your client if that was the case.
20 As for the Judges, well, we very often discover at the very last
21 minute the documents being disclosed. However, we manage to ask useful
22 questions. And this should be even more so, more true of your because you
23 have clear vision of your case and you know things we do not know.
24 So we take note of your concerns that are very legitimate, but as
25 far as I'm concerned, I want to draw your attention to the fact that you
1 should not have been taken by surprise by the disclosure of one single
3 We only have a few minutes left before the break. With respect to
4 the documents submitted through this expert witness, does anybody want to
5 take the floor? Yes. Counsel.
6 MS. TOMASEGOVIC TOMIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. I
7 was waiting for my turn to arrive. The Defence of Mr. Valentin Coric
8 wishes to tender three documents. All three are Prosecution documents,
9 but the Prosecutor did not put them to the witness during
10 examination-in-chief. This was done in cross-examination by the Defence
11 of Mr. Valentin Coric. P 04262, P 00592, and P 02533.
12 Thank you, Your Honours.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Fine. Does another counsel want
14 to take the floor? Well, no more speakers. Oh, no. Mr. Mundis.
15 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you, Mr. President. Just in response to a
16 question Your Honour raised a few moments ago. After the break the
17 witness Nijaz Islamovic will testify. Again, he will be a witness whose
18 testimony will be adduced by written statement pursuant to Rule 89(F). We
19 anticipate, however, due to a number exhibits that we show him that we
20 will spend approximately 30 minutes examining the witness with respect to
21 the documents or the exhibits that have been linked to that witness.
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
23 It's a quarter to 4.00. We will reconvene at five past 4.00.
24 --- Recess taken at 3.45 p.m.
25 --- On resuming at 4.06 p.m.
1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I just want to make a precision
2 with respect to the documents linked to Witness Tomljanovich. If the
3 Defence has any objections, and we have registered some of them because
4 you rose to your feet, you can of course you can formulate them in writing
5 and we'll give you a deadline until the end of the week. So it would be a
6 better idea if you wrote your objections and that would be a better way of
7 going about it.
8 [The witness entered court]
9 WITNESS: NIJAZ ISLAMOVIC
10 [Witness answered through interpreter]
11 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Sir, Witness, would you please
12 rise. I just want to check first of all whether you can hear what I'm
13 saying in your own language. If that is the case, please tell me.
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I do understand you and I can
15 hear you.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Would you give me your name,
17 surname and date of birth, please.
18 THE INTERPRETER: The interpreters cannot hear the witness. There
19 is a lot of interference in the courtroom.
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Could you tell us your
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I'm a doctor.
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The interpreters have just told
24 me that they weren't able to hear you. So please speak up and give me
25 your name and surname again and your date of birth, please.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Nijaz Islamovic, born on the 10th
2 of October, in Mostar, and my profession is a doctor.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Sir, have you ever testified
4 before an International Tribunal or a national tribunal about events that
5 took place in your country in 1992 or 1993 or is this the first time that
6 you're testifying.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This is the first time.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I should now like to ask you to
9 read the solemn declaration that the usher is going to hand to you.
10 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will speak the truth, the
11 whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You may be seated. I'm going to
13 give you a few explanations before you begin your testimony. Your
14 testimony falls within the procedure of Article 89 of the Rules of
15 Procedure of this Tribunal. The Prosecutor is going to ask you something
16 about a statement you gave to the investigators of the OTP. After that,
17 after the Prosecutor's questions, and the Prosecutor will be taking up
18 half an hour, the Defence counsel representing the accused are sitting to
19 your left, and they're going to conduct what we call the
20 cross-examination. Within the frameworks of the cross-examination, they
21 ask you questions, and they shall be doing that for about two and a half
22 hours. If everything goes to plan, you will be completing your testimony
23 today by 7.00, which means we have three hours at our disposal.
24 Without wasting any more time I'll give the floor to Mr. Mundis.
25 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you, Mr. President. Actually, my colleague
1 Ms. Gillett will be conducting the examination of the witness.
2 MS. GILLETT: Thank you, Your Honour. Good afternoon.
3 Your Honour, as you know the 89(F) procedure is going to be used
4 for this witness's evidence today and following Your Honour's guidelines
5 that were given in private session on the 13th of September, the
6 Prosecution intends to first provide the Court with a short summary of the
7 witness's statement for the benefit of the public so that they are able to
8 understand the nature of this witness's evidence. Following that, I will
9 go through the procedure that the witness confirms the statement and
10 confirms that it is his signature on the statement and the contents
12 I also, as Mr. Mundis mentioned previously, have some nine
13 exhibits to be tendered through this witness, and I will take him through
14 each of those exhibits, perhaps with some context to each of the exhibits
15 and hope not to take up more than 30 minutes of the Court's time in so
17 Your Honour, to begin with the short summary of the statement,
18 which is not evidence. The witness Nijaz Islamovic worked as a doctor in
19 the municipality of Prozor from 1989 until the end of July, 1993, when he
20 was fired from the Prozor health centre along with all other Muslims
21 working there.
22 At the request of the HVO command or HVO police, during 1993, in
23 particular in July and August of that year, Dr. Islamovic examined
24 prisoners in the Prozor secondary school, the MUP station, the UNIS
25 factory, and in the villages of Duge and Lapsunj.
1 Examination by Ms. Gillett:
2 Q. Dr. Islamovic, good afternoon.
3 A. Good afternoon.
4 Q. Could I ask you, do you remember being interviewed by someone from
5 the Office of the Prosecutor of this Tribunal?
6 A. You mean with me?
7 Q. Yes.
8 A. Yes.
9 Q. And do you recall when that was?
10 A. It was in 2001, when I worked in Gornji Vakuf.
11 Q. Do you recall following the interview that was held signing a
12 statement that was prepared and read over to you in your own language?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. And did you give that statement voluntarily?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Could I ask that the witness be shown what has become Exhibit --
17 Prosecution Exhibit 09701, bearing the ERN number 0207438 to 0207449, both
18 the English and the B/C/S versions.
19 Perhaps if the witness can be given a hard copy of each version as
20 well, because I understand that the B/C/S can only be shown at one time on
21 the screen, and I believe the markings are made on the English version.
22 For the benefit of the Defence, the statement that I've just
23 provided with the witness is the one that was provided to the Defence
25 Dr. Islamovic, have you had the opportunity to read the statement
1 that is now before you prior to coming into court?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And are those your initials on each of the pages of the statement?
4 A. Yes, they are.
5 Q. And turning to the last page of the statement, is that your
6 signature on the last page?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Does the contents of the statement reflect what you would say to
9 the Court today?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Having re-read this statement in your own language, are there any
12 errors in the statement that you wish to correct before it is tendered
13 into evidence?
14 A. Well, there are a few technical errors. For example, on page 3 it
15 says that the village of Gracac belonged to Jablanica municipality whereas
16 it belonged to Prozor municipality but it is nearer Jablanica
17 municipality. I think it says the reverse.
18 Q. And apart from that are there any errors either technical,
19 linguistic or otherwise that you wish to correct?
20 A. In another spot it says that -- actually, my brother's wife looked
21 for me and not what it says. The kinship relations were erroneously
22 written in.
23 Q. Could you provide the page number for the benefit of the Court on
24 which that error occurs.
25 A. It is on page 7. It should read my brother's wife.
1 Q. Are there any other corrections that you would like to make of
2 that nature?
3 A. No.
4 Q. Dr. Islamovic, having made those corrections, do you stand by the
5 contents of the statement as being true to the best of your knowledge and
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. Turning now to the document --
9 A. Just one more correction. Not from 1989. I haven't worked from
10 1989 but from 1976. I was a specialist as of 1989, but as of 1976 I
11 worked as a doctor in the health centre of Prozor.
12 Q. I'm grateful for that clarification. My mistake.
13 Turning now to the exhibits that the Prosecution intend to tender
14 through this witness, could the witness be shown Exhibit number 09695.
15 Sorry, it may be my mistake. 09685. I think I might have said 95. My
17 Dr. Islamovic, do you recognise the photograph that is before you?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. What is it?
20 A. This is the secondary school centre in Prozor.
21 Q. And is that the secondary school to which you refer in your
22 witness statement?
23 A. Yes.
24 MS. GILLETT: Could the witness now be shown Exhibit number 08994.
25 Q. Once again, Dr. Islamovic, do you recognise this document that is
1 now before you?
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. What is it?
4 A. This is a diagram of the interior of the centre.
5 Q. When you say "centre," what do you mean by centre?
6 A. The secondary school centre.
7 Q. And is this sketch, the diagram, is it one that you yourself
9 A. No.
10 Q. Are you nonetheless able to use this sketch in describing the
11 interior of the secondary school?
12 A. Yes.
13 MS. GILLETT: Would it be possible to have this document put on
14 the ELMO? I believe it would be easier for Dr. Islamovic to verify
15 various parts of this diagram what he's speaking about it to the Court.
16 Q. Dr. Islamovic, you see now a diagram that has been placed on the
17 piece of equipment next to you. I wonder if it assists you if you could
18 describe the various compartments that are set out on that diagram to the
19 best of your recollection.
20 A. This is the entrance.
21 Q. Perhaps if you could point to the actual diagram on the equipment
22 to your right and then the Court can see.
23 A. This is the entrance, and there was a hallway here. That's where
24 there was a guard. This was a classroom. These are steps going up to the
25 storey above. The staircase. I was on the upper floor just once when the
1 camp was formed and when there were very few prisoners in the camp.
2 I looked into this classroom, then went upstairs to see what the
3 upper floor was like. There were classrooms up there, and there was some
4 blankets around the walls and some sort of mattresses, foam mattresses,
5 and there were several people here. Some people went to work, but I saw
6 that up here there were some prominent people from the various villages.
7 They were well-known people in the village, better-off people. And they
8 were prisoners there. They had been detained. They had been brought from
9 their houses. They did not know why. I saw people from Varvara, and
10 Kovacevo Polje, some people from Prozor. But during the previous regime,
11 they might have been some party leaders or something like that, people who
12 perhaps had shops and who were better off and the rest. And talking --
13 when I talked to them, they said they didn't know why they were there,
14 what was going to happen to them, but they -- but we talked. They were in
15 a fairly good mood. And that's the only time I went upstairs.
16 The other times that I came --
17 Q. Just pause briefly there. Could you remember when that time that
18 you went upstairs was? What month, if you can remember, and what year.
19 A. I think it was May, 1993.
20 Q. Please continue.
21 A. Later on when I came there were more people from other villages.
22 They were brought in, and I would examine them in this room next to the
23 hall. The young people went out to work, and the elderly people -- well,
24 elderly. Between 50 and 60 years old. I knew some of them. They would
25 say they had some heart problems or respiratory problems. I knew some of
1 them, and I provided them with some medicines. I had medicines for high
2 blood pressure and for pains, rheumatic disorders and so on and so forth.
3 The second time I was there was when the first group had returned
4 after 10 days of digging at Uzdol.
5 Q. Again, just to -- sorry to interrupt you again, but when was the
6 second time that you were there?
7 A. It might have been the beginning of June. And I also examined a
8 few people on that occasion, people who had arrived in the meantime, and I
9 examined a few of those who had come back, who had returned from doing
10 their labour. They were rather frightened. Some of them had injuries.
11 One of them showed me his back. He had some injuries on his back. Other
12 man said he felt chest pains after being beaten. And another man who was
13 a distant cousin of mine said that they had confiscated his shoes and that
14 I should tell his family to bring him another pair because he had to go
15 barefoot. So he also showed me the injuries to his back.
16 Q. If you can just --
17 A. And asked me to give him some medicine.
18 Q. Did you enter any of the other rooms or the boxes that we see here
19 on the diagram?
20 A. No.
21 Q. Did you visit the secondary school in July of 1993?
22 A. Yes. I went in July, I think twice, and examined people, and also
23 -- yes, I examined patients. But the last time I went I wasn't able to
24 say that they were ill. Before that, I would say that so-and-so was sick
25 and he wouldn't have to go out to work. But then I was no longer allowed
1 to do that. The doctor from the HVO and the military hospital would --
2 Rumbovci, his name was Bosko Skoro, and Mario Budimir, they were called in
3 and they were in charge of either releasing somebody in July from a camp
4 or to say that they didn't have to do any work. The prisoners told me
5 that Dr. Skoro came by frequently, almost every day, and that Mario
6 Budimir was sort of the commander and that he had the authority to let
7 people go. But in July to let them go what did that mean, to release
8 them? Many people didn't have any homes or flats by that time and didn't
9 know where to go so even if they were released they didn't nowhere to go.
10 They had nowhere to go.
11 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... once more. And could the
12 witness now be shown Exhibit 3286. Sorry, I'm not seeing it in front of
13 me. Yes. Sorry. Thank you.
14 Taking a look at this document, Dr. Islamovic, you'll see in point
15 number 2 there's the name of Mario Budimir there. Is that the same person
16 to whom you've just referred?
17 A. Yes, yes.
18 Q. Have you seen this document previously?
19 A. No.
20 Q. And you'll see, if you read in point number 1, where it states
21 that the medical service should provide regular visits by a physician to
22 the building where the arrested Muslims are being kept.
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. Do you know, apart from yourself, if there were other physicians
25 that were visiting this facility?
1 A. No, apart from the two doctors I mentioned earlier on who came by.
2 And I think this refers to the HVO medical corps or service. I think that
3 refers to them.
4 MS. GILLETT: Could the witness now be shown Exhibit 9686.
5 Q. Dr. Islamovic, can you identify any of the buildings shown in this
7 A. Yes, I can. The flag there, where the flag is, that's the
8 building that used to be the SUP. It is now the police station. It was
9 the police station during the war. To the right is the centre of town
10 with the cafes. This is a residential building. Before the police
11 building, police station, is the old building where the policemen had
12 their flats. It was built in the 1950s.
13 Q. Are you able to identify the building that's a sort of pinkish
14 colour on the left-hand side of the photograph.
15 A. That's the building where the policemen lived.
16 Q. Is the health centre in which you worked --
17 A. We called it the police building.
18 Q. Is the health centre in which you worked shown on this
20 A. No. It is to the north, 100 to 150 metres away from this building
22 Q. In relation to the police station that you've described, where
23 would it be?
24 A. It's up the road. This road leads to Rama, and this other road
25 leads to the factory and the health centre.
1 Q. Were you able to see the police station from the health centre?
2 A. No. There are three buildings, but you can't see them.
3 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Excuse me, please. The witness has said that
4 there is a road that leads to Rama, to Prozor. Where are we here?
5 MS. GILLETT:
6 Q. Dr. Islamovic, perhaps you could --
7 A. This care turning here, that's the direction to Rama. The other
8 road leads to the factory or health centre.
9 Q. Just to clarify, Dr. Islamovic, which town or village are these
10 buildings that we're looking at in?
11 A. It's in Prozor, the northern part of Prozor.
12 Q. Turning now to Exhibit 8998. If the witness could be shown this
13 exhibit, please.
14 And once again, Dr. Islamovic, are you able to identify -- [French
15 on English channel].
16 A. That is a sketch which shows the building, the MUP building, and
17 there's a warehouse that belonged to the former Territorial Defence, and
18 the prisoners were put up there.
19 Q. And did you make this diagram yourself?
20 A. No.
21 Q. Are you nonetheless able to use it in describing the interior of
22 the MUP station?
23 A. Yes, of course. I would always go there for documents if I needed
24 any, and my driving licence after the war, now before. There are a few
25 steps to the entrance. On the right-hand side you have the little duty
1 officer, policeman, and then there's a staircase lead together floor
2 above. On the let are the offices where driving licenses and permits
3 would be issued and then there are two little rooms behind the staircase
4 where people were brought in when -- and were detained when they had
5 committed some offence.
6 Q. And when you visited the MUP building, where did you go to?
7 A. I went to the MUP building twice. The first time I came together
8 with a nurse, and I think she was a Croat, when I was told by the police
9 who told me that there was a prisoner who was injured. That was during
10 the day.
11 Q. And where was this person within the MUP building?
12 A. Well, I found her by the staircase in the corridor. I assume that
13 she was in those premises there, but I found her in the hallway. And the
14 nurse had bandages, the bandages with her to bandage the person who had
15 been injured. When I went in there were a lot of soldiers and policemen
16 there, and he was kneeling by the staircase. He looked very poorly. He
17 seemed to be in shock. He was perspiring a lot. He was pale. And I
18 asked him to show me where he was hurt. I saw that he was all bloody
19 around the stomach area when he opened his shirt. I asked him what had
20 happened, he said, "I couldn't take the torture any more, and I took the
21 knife and inflicted the wounds on myself, stabbed myself."
22 The nurse bandaged his wounds, and I said he would have to undergo
23 an operation --
24 Q. Dr. Islamovic --
25 A. -- because it was a serious wound, and then they took him off to
1 Rama, to the hospital there. That was the first time.
2 Q. On the second occasion, if you could just say whereabouts in the
3 MUP station you went, to which room or corridor.
4 A. On the second occasion I went to these two rooms, the corridor and
5 these two rooms which were referred to as cells. These were rooms where
6 prisoners were kept.
7 MS. GILLETT: Could the witness now be shown Exhibit 9687.
8 Q. Are you able to identify this photograph?
9 A. This is the UNIS factory.
10 MS. GILLETT: And could the witness now be shown Exhibit 9688.
11 Q. And again, Dr. Islamovic, are you able to identify any buildings
12 in this photograph?
13 A. Yes. Yes.
14 Q. Could you do so, please.
15 A. This is the secondary school centre, the building with a lot of
16 windows. That's the Vitezit factory, and where the chimney is that's the
17 UNIS factory. That's to the north of Prozor.
18 Q. And finally, Dr. Islamovic, you say in your statement that you
19 visited Duge and Lapsunj. How did you come to visit these two villages?
20 A. When I went to Lapsunj I wasn't working any more. I was near
21 Prozor in a village called Borovnica where my wife came from, and one day
22 Nikola Curic, a former school friend of mine from secondary school,
23 arrived, and a man named Ibro Mujanovic, who was a driver, and they asked
24 that on the next day I go with them, first to Lapsunj and then to Duge
25 with a lady doctor --
1 Q. Sorry to interrupt you, Dr. Islamovic, but just to ask you do you
2 know what function Nikola Curic had at that time?
3 A. I think he was doing something in the civilian protection. He was
4 doing something for civilians. And that's why he -- well, he told me that
5 the commander had changed and that there was a request that we visit those
6 inhabitants of Lapsunj and Duge. He came to fetch me and this lady doctor
7 was there as well, and we went to Lapsunj and then to Duge.
8 Q. [Previous translation continues] ... commander.
9 A. The new commander's name I think was Pavlovic, the new commander.
10 Q. Do you know his first name?
11 A. I think it was Anto [as interpreted].
12 Q. And do you recall the name of the old commander, the previous
14 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Excuse me, please. Commander of what?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Commander of the HVO, Rama, Mostar.
16 MS. GILLETT: Could the witness be shown finally Exhibit 4193.
17 Q. You will see that there is a signature at the bottom of this
18 document. Is this the person to whom you are referring, Dr. Islamovic?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And have you seen this order before?
21 A. No.
22 MS. GILLETT: Your Honour, I have no further exhibits to put to
23 Dr. Islamovic, and I would ask to now tender Dr. Islamovic's statement,
24 Exhibit number 09701, together with the exhibits that I have shown to him,
25 Exhibits 03286, 04193, 08994, 08998, 09685, 09686, 09687, and 09688.
1 Thank you, Your Honour.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Before giving the floor to the
3 Defence for the cross-examination, I have a few short questions to put to
4 the witness. I think these questions are very important.
5 Doctor, when answering some of the questions put to you by the
6 Prosecution, you stated that you met a number of people who were detained,
7 and you mentioned the presence of a soldier on the first floor. Can you
8 confirm that the prisoners that you saw were guarded by soldiers?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. The guard was not upstairs but
10 is he entranceway, in front of the staircase leading upstairs. There was
11 always a guard there. There were drinks there.
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Fine. The guard you saw, did he
13 wear a uniform, insignia? According to you, which unit did he belong to?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Oh, yes, yes. He had weapons and a
15 uniform. He was probably an HVO soldier. What else could he be?
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. And in the town
17 where you were practising as a doctor, what unit of the HVO was stationed
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was the HVO Rama Brigade. That's
20 what it was called. Rama, Prozor.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Fine. Who was the commander of
22 the Rama Brigade?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The commander, well, they chained.
24 We have seen that there was Ante Pavlovic. Before that there was a
25 certain Franjic. And there were others before them, but I can't remember
1 who else there was.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Fine. These were the questions
3 I wanted to put to the witness. I'm now going to give the floor to the
4 Defence. I'm sure you've come to an agreement on how to divide the time.
5 Ms. Alaburic.
6 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour.
7 Cross-examination by Ms. Alaburic:
8 Q. Dr. Islamovic, good afternoon. My name is Vesna Alaburic I'm an
9 attorney from Zagreb and in these proceedings I appear for Milivoj
10 Petkovic. In connection with your statement and the exhibits shown to you
11 today I will put a few questions for you, and I believe we will conclude
12 this part of your cross-examination very quickly.
13 Could the witness be shown part of the statement on page 10 of the
14 text in Croatian, the passage before the last. In English it's also on
15 page 10 but the first paragraph. It's at the top of the page.
16 Dr. Islamovic, can you please read the paragraph I wish to refer
17 to. It begins with the words "On the 28th of August, 1993."
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. Can you read this out? I see that we still don't have the
20 document in e-court, but while you are reading I believe that it will
21 appear on the screen. So please begin.
22 A. "On the 28th of August, 1993, when all the people from Prozor
23 were expelled, Dr. Budimir Mario had to give his medical opinion about six
24 prisoners. These prisoners were supposed to be released. The other
25 prisoners from the high school saw that the six were put in a jeep and
1 driven away. They were never seen again."
2 Q. May I ask you to read a little more slowly. It will be easier for
3 the interpreters. Please continue.
4 A. "I was told that amongst them were Alibegovic Avdo. He was my
5 neighbour and around 60 years old and had cancer. Ahmet Hodzic. He was
6 about 47 years old. He had psychological problems. Ibro Purgic, who was
7 also about 47 years. He had a heart attack before the war. Numo Imamovic
8 who was about 50 or 55 years old and suffered from spine problems, and
9 Hasko Hrnic who was about 42 years old and suffered from tuberculosis.
10 These people had been really sick. I had treated them during my three
11 visits in the high school and they had been my patients before the war."
12 Q. With reference to these six patients you said they were put in a
13 jeep, driven off, and nobody ever saw them again.
14 Could we please have on e-court Prosecution Exhibit P 04693. P
16 We also have the Croatian text, so please take a look at this
17 order. We also have it in English.
18 Can you tell us, Dr. Islamovic --
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. -- what kind of order is this? Who issued it and when? And does
21 it refer to six patients, those six patients that you mentioned in your
23 A. Yes.
24 Q. So this is an order issued by commander Anto Pavlovic whom we have
25 already mentioned. It was issued on the 31st of August, 1993, and based
1 on medical examinations in the collection centres, he ordered that these
2 six patients be released and allowed to go home, and the military police
3 was tasked with driving them to Konjic. Is this correct?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. That is small difference in the names that you mentioned and the
6 names listed in this order. Would you please tell us whether the
7 difference is because you abbreviated the names?
8 A. Oh, yes. He was my next door neighbour, Avdo Alibegovic. His
9 name was actually Abdulah but everybody caught him Avdo. His house was 30
10 metres away from my house.
11 Q. I wanted you to confirm those were these six patients in spite of
12 the differences in the names.
13 A. Yes, yes, all of them. I know them all very well.
14 Q. We who come from Bosnia know --
15 JUDGE TRECHSEL: You are overlapping now, speaking while the
16 previous speaker's translation is still going on. So please keep a break
18 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] I apologise, Your Honours, and to
19 all in the courtroom, especially the interpreters. For a moment I had
20 forgotten that it was not just B/C/S speakers who were in this courtroom.
21 I'll try not to forget this again.
22 Q. Dr. Islamovic, thank you for this clarification. Along with the
23 document put to you by the Prosecutor today, P 04193, could we put it back
24 on e-court again, please?
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Wait a moment. You've asked a
1 question, but you're already moving on to a new one.
2 Sir, you -- a document was shown to you, and according to that
3 document the six persons who disappeared were supposed to be taken to
4 Konjic. These people, have they disappeared? No one has seen them since?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] To the best of my knowledge, nobody
6 ever saw them again. They were supposed to go with a group of people when
7 all the civilian population were expelled on the 28th of August, a village
8 was left behind. It was called Kuloglici. There were some 30 or 50
9 people there who stayed behind, and three or four days later they were
10 supposed to go towards Konjic like the rest of the population which had
11 left, and then these six, these six prisoners, who were also patients,
12 pursuant to this medical finding they were escorted off and they would be
13 escorted by the police and they would go together with this group of local
14 villagers, but as far as I know all trace of them was lost at that point
15 and nobody ever saw them again.
16 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation].
17 Q. Dr. Islamovic, could we look again at this document that you said
18 something about today. This is Prosecution -- a Prosecution document.
19 It's an order issued by commander Anto Pavlovic that all detained persons
20 under the age of 15 and over the age of 60 as well as all those who are
21 seriously ill should be released. Would you please look at the
22 introductory part, the preamble of this order. I do apologise, but we
23 don't have the document I'm referring to in e-court. It's P 04193. It
24 should be another order issued by Anto Pavlovic.
25 No, it's not this document. P 04193. It's a document we have
1 already seen today on the screens. Ah, here it is. Yes. Now we have the
2 right document.
3 Dr. Islamovic, in the introductory part it says: "Pursuant to the
4 on conclusions of the Rama HVO, meeting number such-and-such, I hereby
5 order," and then it's signed by the commander, Anto Pavlovic, who is the
6 commander of the Rama Brigade. So again this is the HVO.
7 Could you please clarify what kind of HVO Rama meeting is
8 mentioned here where a decision was issued pursuant to which this order
9 was issued?
10 A. Well, I wouldn't know that. How could I know that?
11 Q. Have you ever heard of the Rama HVO?
12 A. Of course.
13 Q. Tell us what it was, then.
14 A. HVO Rama, well, it's short for Croatian Defence Council Rama. All
15 power, legislative, executive, it was all HVO.
16 Q. Would you agree with me that the HVO Rama were the municipal
17 authorities in Rama corresponding to the municipal authorities in the
18 previous system?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. Would you agree that these were civilian authorities?
21 A. Well, I don't know what to say to that. I don't know if there
22 were any civilian authorities at all.
23 Q. Could we please put a document to the witness. It's a document
24 which the Prosecutor --
25 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Please wait a second. Sorry,
2 With respect to this particular question put to the witness, I'd
3 like to ask the following: Witness, Ms. Alaburic has mentioned six people
4 earlier on. You've stated that you knew some of these persons. They've
5 disappeared. After the war, did the civilian authorities produce a
6 document, a certificate, any kind of document related to these people
7 stating that these persons were deceased? Did these persons, did these
8 people appear on that list? Or if that isn't the case, is there anything
9 new about these persons, any news about them being maybe in another
10 country? And to conclude, what is your personal opinion? What do you
11 think about this -- these people who have disappeared if nothing has been
12 heard of them?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I think -- well, these people
14 are listed as missing. There are some 15 or 20.000 people still missing,
15 and I think that these six are among these missing persons, but all these
16 years later they would have turned up. So they went missing in the war.
17 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Thank you.
18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Earlier on in answer to
19 Ms. Alaburic about the municipal authorities, you said that there were
20 no municipal authorities at the time. Does that mean that in that town,
21 in that settlement, there was no elected official, administrative
22 official? There was no one who was in a position to take administrative
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I don't understand these
25 matters very well. I was never -- I never delved in politics. Of course
1 the authorities were elected. It was HVO authority. Now, how far these
2 authorities protected the Bosniak inhabitants in Prozor and in the camps I
3 really don't know. It's a difficult question to answer, because all the
4 inhabitants went through some terrible times. The civilian population
5 did. And the authorities didn't protect them much or help them much. And
6 even when physicians went to visit these two or three villages, well, it
7 was five villages coming into one village. Coming into a house you would
8 have 20, 30 people there, no water, no proper hygienic conditions. When
9 we went to Lapsunj there was no water and it was summertime. There were
10 children there, adults there. It was a catastrophe. Terribly difficult
11 situation for the inhabitants. So they didn't pay much attention to
12 anything like that. They didn't care for civilians much. They didn't pay
13 attention to them. So as far as civilian authorities were concerned, they
14 didn't amount to much.
15 It's difficult to imagine what it looked like and the kind of
16 conditions the people lived in and what their mental state of health was
17 and physical health, because when we visited them the young people would
18 spend their nights hiding in brooks, in gardens. The elderly were left
19 without any medication. They had been expelled from their houses, moved
20 about from place to place.
21 So as far as the civilian authorities were concerned, well, what
22 more can I say?
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Counsel showed you a document,
24 and when you looked at that document it was 4093 -- 4193, where it said
25 that the HVO of Rama had a meeting on the 11th of August, and the decision
1 was taken to set all persons under the age of 15 or over the age of 63, as
2 well as the sick, anybody who was sick. And Ante Pavlovic, on the 14th of
3 August, compiled an order ordering the liberation of all those persons,
4 that they be set free.
5 Now, what do you think about that? What can you tell us?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I think that there weren't any
7 youngsters under the age of 15 or there was nobody over the age of 65
8 either, 60, 65. And as far as releasing them, the people didn't have
9 anywhere to go. They were left homeless. So many people didn't even want
10 to leave the camp because they didn't know where to go. If they left, if
11 they went to places inhabited by Muslims, some groups would turn up during
12 the night and there was the possibility of them being taken prisoner again
13 and sent to some even worse places and camps. So it was vicious circle.
14 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation].
15 Q. Dr. Islamovic, from what you've just told us about the fact that
16 Mr. Muslims didn't have anywhere to go, in fact, and they didn't wish to
17 leave the detention centres, would it be right for me to conclude that
18 there were Muslims who voluntarily stayed on in the detention centres
20 A. Well, I don't know who would like to stay on of their own accord
21 in a camp voluntarily, but people just didn't have anywhere to go. They
22 had no choice.
23 Q. I understand that, but can we clarify some points with respect to
24 civilian authority. Now, from your answer to His Honour, I understood it
25 that you recognise that civilian authority did exist but as far as the
1 Muslim population was concerned it didn't perform its duties as it should
2 have done.
3 Now, I'd like to know whether the civilian authorities did it
4 exist or not? Did any civilian authority exist or not?
5 A. Well, don't ask me about authority. I was never in politics. I
6 never liked power and authority or the authorities, and I never did
7 anything else except my own job. So I don't really understand these
8 matters, the civilian authorities and such.
9 I think there was HVO, authority. Yes, the HVO authorities did
10 exist, and they paid attention to things but not sufficiently. They
11 didn't do enough, especially not for the Muslim population. It was
12 uni-national or one-sided.
13 Q. Well, from your answer, I can conclude that you do recognise that
14 civilian authority did exist regardless of what kind of civilian authority
15 it was, good or bad. What I'm interested in now is that we can agree that
16 civilian authorities did exist?
17 A. Well, if the HVO had these meetings and made decisions, then it
18 means that it did exist. The authorities did exist, except that it was
20 Q. Well, tell me, Dr. Islamovic, does the name Mijo Jozic ring a
22 A. Mijo Jozic was our municipal president.
23 Q. Municipal president?
24 A. Yes, that's right.
25 Q. May we show P 00382 now, please. It's a Prosecution exhibit. P
1 00382 is the number. And it is a decision by Mate Boban on the
2 appointment of a municipal HVO of Prozor where it says that Mijo Jozic,
3 the HVO president -- is the HVO president. Can you explain the difference
4 between Prozor and Rama?
5 A. No, it's still called Prozor, Rama. Prozor, Rama, whatever. Now,
6 the people on this list, I know them.
7 Q. Are these all individuals who represent executive power and
8 authority, municipal authority in Prozor or in Rama?
9 A. Well, they're all individuals who before the war were in politics
10 as well. Mile Tomic, Nikola Ivic, Marko Dragic, Ivan Miletic, Marko
11 Loncar. They were all people who were high-ranking officials in the
12 system as it existed. They were all in politics, and these are all
13 individuals -- well, that's -- those are the people they were.
14 Q. When was this enacted, 1992?
15 A. Yes, 1992.
16 Q. All right. We agree. Now, I'd like to go back to an order now on
17 the release of prisoners under the age of 15 and over the age of 60. If
18 you recall. If not, we can have it back on e-court. Do you remember the
19 document? It was an order issued by a military commander pursuant to an
20 HVO Rama meeting decision. And I'd like you to tell me now whether it
21 would be right to conclude that that military commander passed this order
22 in conformity with a decision made by the civilian authorities of the
23 Prozor or Rama municipalities?
24 A. Yes, that's right.
25 Q. Thank you. We can move on. You told us today that Mr. Nikola
1 Curic, who came to fetch you after the Rama Brigade commander was
2 replaced, to help the Muslim population put up in the villages of Lapsunj
3 and Duge, and you told me that he worked for the civilian protection
5 Tell me now -- or, rather, in your statement, on page 10 you wrote
6 that he wore a camouflage uniform.
7 A. Yes, that's right.
8 Q. With an HVO insignia on it.
9 A. Well, everybody had that.
10 Q. Well, that's precisely what I'm interested in. Did everybody at
11 that time wear camouflage uniforms?
12 A. Yes. He had a pistol as well, as a weapon.
13 Q. Judging by the fact that somebody wore a camouflage uniform, were
14 you able to conclude or did you conclude that that person was a member of
15 some military unit of the Croatian Defence Council, or could that person
16 have been in the civilian defence, for example?
17 A. Well, yes, that's quite logical.
18 Q. Thank you. Now, based on the fact that somebody was wearing
19 camouflage uniform, would you be able to conclude whether that person was
20 on duty at that time, or perhaps the person had been allowed to go home
21 since the army worked in shifts. Do you know this term a "shift army" and
22 what it means when an army is organised by shifts? That is to say you
23 spend two weeks on the battle feed and two weeks away.
24 A. I think that Nikola Curic worked the first shift as we said,
25 during the day.
1 Q. He worked normal working hours, did he?
2 A. I think he worked during the day normal work, hours and then went
4 Q. All right. Now, we conclude that camouflage -- the fact that
5 somebody was wearing a camouflage uniform did not necessarily mean he was
6 an HVO soldier. Now I'd like to ask you and I don't know how much I am I
7 have at my disposal -- may I take 10 more minutes?
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I don't know. If you have
9 divided up the time amongst yourselves, amongst the Defence counsel, then
10 there's no problem. If you haven't divided up your time, then the two and
11 a half hours divided by six means 120 minutes plus 30 minutes; 150 minutes
12 divided by six is 25 minutes per counsel, and the registrar is going to
13 tell me exactly, and he says that you have already used 20 minutes, which
14 means theoretically you have five minutes left. Unless the other Defence
15 counsel accord you their time.
16 MR. KOVACIC: [Previous translation continues] ... my time as
17 well. At least a part of my time. No problem.
18 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] I would like to thank my
19 colleagues, and then I shall proceed.
20 Q. Dr. Islamovic, you told us that you left Prozor and moved to your
21 mother-in-law in the village of Borovnica, and in the statement as reason
22 for doing that you state that you did so for your own safety and security,
23 because you were afraid that they would arrest you.
24 I can see you laughing, so I assume you know what I'm going to ask
25 you. Well, go ahead and answer.
1 A. I worked in the health centre up until the 27th of July, and on
2 that day when the doctor from Rama came, he told the porter or, rather,
3 the man to tell us that we had all been dismissed, and I was expelled from
4 my flat that same day in the evening, at around 8.00. And I was surprised
5 how they had learnt that I wasn't working any more and I was the only one
6 left in the apartment building. And then with my wife and children I
7 crossed across the hallway and went to stay with a Croatian neighbour of
8 ours, and there was a male nurse with us. We spent the night there
9 because we had -- were told to leave our flat within the space of 15
11 My wife paid a neighbour to take us to Borovnica, to my
12 mother-in-law. It's about two kilometres away from Prozor. So that's
13 what happened.
14 Q. Now, what I'm interested in now is this: You left Prozor because
15 you were afraid for your safety.
16 A. Well, I had no flat. I had to leave.
17 Q. Let's clear that point up. In your statement, you say that you
18 hid at your mother-in-law's because you were afraid that the HVO would
19 arrest you.
20 A. Well, yes, that's right.
21 Q. Now, what I'm interested in knowing is this: Nonetheless, in the
22 middle of the August, 1993, you visited the secondary school centre for
23 the third time at the request of somebody from the HVO, and then when you
24 were requested by people from the HVO, you visited the incarcerated
25 Muslims in the surrounding villages, and on this it is logical to conclude
1 that people in the HVO knew where they were and that they were able to
2 reach you and that they could have arrested you had they wished to do so.
3 So could you explain all this to us?
4 A. Well, I wasn't hiding from the HVO and from people from Prozor who
5 knew me. I hid at night from groups who would come into the village. I
6 wasn't hiding there the HVO. On the contrary. People knew me. They knew
7 me. I had been working for 15 years before the war. But I hid during the
8 night because you would get groups coming in asking for money, taking
9 people off. So I spent 10 days there.
10 The situation at the time was very bad, because a lot of refugees
11 had come in from Bugojno, and there were conflicts in Bugojno, and the
12 result of that was that a lot of civilians and military personnel, too,
13 came in from Bugojno. And then in Prozor there was general chaos. And I
14 think that in the fire brigade and other places where there were Muslims
15 and several houses in town and people who stayed in their houses had a
16 very hard time of it, because every night was very difficult.
17 That's why I hid. I wasn't hiding from the people who knew him,
18 Nikola Curic, Miletic, and all the others. I was hiding like everybody
19 else who happened to find themselves there, because it was summertime so
20 you could go and take refuge in the forests until 2.00 or 3.00 in the
21 morning and then you would come back. So that's how it was.
22 Q. Dr. Islamovic, we who know more about the events in the former
23 Yugoslavia know exactly what you mean when you mention Bugojno and when
24 you say that it was the summer of 1993 and all the rest of it, but I'd
25 like to ask you if possible to explain to Their Honours and everybody else
1 what it was that happened in Bugojno and how many people from Bugojno, how
2 many Croats from Bugojno arrived in the Prozor and Rama area, and in
3 what -- what effect this had in relationships towards the Muslims, and
4 then I'll ask you other questions after that.
5 A. Well, I've already said that I wasn't in town any more, so I can
6 only assume on the basis of what people said who had gone into town that
7 several thousand inhabitants had come in. You could see them.
8 We were up on a hill, and you could see a column of cars moving in
9 a column of five kilometres. You could see the road. You could see the
10 cars. You could see the people.
11 Q. Tell us, please, those Croats who were coming in from Bugojno,
12 were they angry for having been expelled from their homes just as the
13 Muslims were when they had been expelled from their homes?
14 MS. GILLETT: [Previous translation continues] ... I've sat here
15 patiently listening to this last series of questions, and I fail to see
16 how they are within the scope of the witness's statement, how asking
17 questions about people from Bugojno falls with anything the witness has
18 said today and anything that is in the statement.
19 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes. What has Bugojno to do --
20 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] I can explain. The topic of
21 Bugojno is not one that I broached but the witness mentioned Bugojno
22 first, and he also mentioned why he was in hiding, and then he explained
23 to us that he wasn't hiding from the HVO but that he was in fact hiding
24 from the groups of men who had escaped HVO control and who went round
25 looting people and jeopardising their safety and security. Is that how it
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] No. He broached an essential
3 point and then immediately you moved on to the question of Bugojno. But
4 let's go back to what he was saying, because that's what the Judges are
5 interested in, because we have to rule on the question.
6 You said a moment ago that you went into hiding. You did not hide
7 from the HVO people, because you knew them. You were a doctor and so on.
8 But you said that during the night there were groups who came in, who
9 stormed apartments and houses, and some people asked for ransom or money
10 or whatever. Could you explain what you were saying? Who were these
11 people in those groups? Were they Muslims? Were they Croats? Were they
12 HVO men? Who were these groups? Who made up these groups?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, in Prozor there was a
14 well-known group called the Kinder Platoon, kinder vod. They were young
15 people, ranging in age between 16 to 20, the kinder platoon, 20 or 30 of
16 them, and these young men, some Muslims complained at the beginning and
17 Mijo Jozic said for example that they were out of control and that they
18 couldn't do anything with them or about them. They were young men who
19 were from the villages who took over the Muslim flats, cars, drink,
20 whatever, and then during the night -- I can't call them hooligans but
21 they were bandits. I think bandit is stronger word than hooligan. Anyway
22 they were young guys who would storm the area during the night and did the
23 worst kind of things.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] But these young people, were
25 they armed? Did they wear a uniform? Did they have a chief of some kind,
1 somebody in charge? Could you tell us more about those young people?
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, those young men were armed,
3 and they had a house where they spent their time mostly, and each of them
4 had a flat, of course. But at night they would come in and their surnames
5 were well known and their cars were well known. If they had a white Lada
6 car or what was called Papak or if their name was Papak, there was Beljo,
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So you can give us the names of
9 those people, can you? Can you give us their names?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Zoran Papak was one of them, I
11 think. Then there was Pavkovic. His first name was Tome or Vlado. Then
12 there was Beljo. I don't know. I know them by their surnames mostly.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Were they Croats, Muslims? What
14 ethnic group did they belong to?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, they were Croats from Prozor
16 and from the surrounding villages.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Right. So they were Croats from
18 Prozor. Now, you said that President Jozic Jovic [as interpreted] was
19 informed about that, knew about that. And he couldn't do anything about
20 it? Is that what you said?
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't think he could, no.
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] But this Rama Brigade, did
23 nobody go and see Mr. Ante Pavlovic to deal with the problem?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. I don't know who could approach
25 him, because they were all in the camps and helpless there.
1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You've just explained to us that
2 there was a group of young men, a band of young men who sowed terror
3 amongst the population. But apparently there was also an HVO unit also
4 bearing arms and that the head of the HVO who issued an order, and we read
5 that order, could be the legal authority in a capacity to solve the
6 problem. What do you think about that?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, if the will was there then a
8 way might have been found, but maybe they didn't dare come into conflict
9 with them either. I don't know.
10 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Dr. Islamovic, are you saying that these gangs
11 only attacked Muslims, or did they equally attack Croat persons?
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know that they attacked
13 Croats. They may have done. They may have taken something from someone
14 at night, but I don't know that.
15 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Thank you.
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] One night while I was at Borovnica
17 hiding in the cellar, one of these groups arrived in the house where my
18 wife was and some other people, and this Papak, it was 2.00 at night. He
19 was taken off for an interview, and the children were screaming, and then
20 he brought him back. So I have first-hand experience of all this.
21 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Excuse me, please. This has not been very clear.
22 At 2.00 in the night Papak turned up at the house where you were hiding.
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I was in the basement, a small
24 basement downstairs, and they came to the area where we lived, of course.
25 My brother-in-law and I were hiding under the ground, and we heard a car
1 arrive and stop, and then we heard a commotion upstairs. And when they
2 had left, this lady said that they wanted to take her away, but the other
3 guy who was there said, "Look, there are small children here. Leave her,"
4 and so on.
5 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Thank you very much. This corrects the
6 transcript where it was said "He was taken for an interview," and that one
7 could think that this was Papak, but that is an error obviously.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] We have another question from
9 the Bench.
10 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] Witness, one last question about
11 this matter. You stated that you were not afraid of the HVO because you
12 knew many members of the HVO, and you said that the HVO was in charge of
13 the administration of your village at that time. But you also stated that
14 it's something you don't know much about, civilian authorities or military
15 authorities, but you stated that the HVO was in charge of the
17 You knew the people in charge at the time, the authorities, and
18 you were witness of what these young people were doing at night. Did you
19 ever go to the HVO people to ask them what was going on and, then, if so,
20 what was their reaction? Because we have to determine what are the
21 responsibilities, who was responsible for these situations.
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, as the situation developed in
23 Prozor, when I was already in Borovnica and later at Vogoca, I really
24 couldn't move around, and as tensions escalated and conflicts and the
25 situation deteriorated day by day, my wife went to see my colleagues on
1 several occasions to ask them to help us go to Split, and they wouldn't
2 help me. So how could we ask them to do more, to calm down a gang? If a
3 colleague wouldn't help me, then why would the got or the authorities want
4 to help me?
5 JUDGE TRECHSEL: A personal question, sir. Is your wife also a
6 Muslim, a Bosniak, or is she of some other ethnic origin?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, no. Let me say once again.
8 When we're at Podgradje where I was born, from September to December,
9 these groups would arrive there was a man called Vukoja who would come
10 with a lad from Croatia to take my sister-in-law and my wife and the
11 children and he took 3.000 marks them and a bag and then he left. So they
12 were robbed.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You said that your family was
14 victim of some racketeering or extortion because they stole 3.000 marks
15 from you, and you're saying that the Vukoza [phoen] was a member of that
16 group, but when they arrived these people, were they -- how were they
17 dressed? Did they wear uniforms, civilian clothes?
18 A. They were all wearing military uniforms. Nobody walked around in
19 civilian clothes. I mean, among the Croats. They were all in uniform,
20 and they were all armed.
21 JUDGE TRECHSEL: I'm sorry. There is now a contrast between what
22 is stated in your statement, and it is the last paragraph of page 10 in
23 the English text, and what is in the courtroom now.
24 What you have said is your wife had the intention to leave and
25 paid 3.000 Deutschmark to be safely led to -- I think to Croatia, across
1 the border. Is that the real story? And then -- and then those people
2 had taken the money, but instead of furnishing the service that they
3 pretended to sell, they simply absconded, so that in fact you were cheated
4 rather than robbed or embezzled.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, there was this lad with a
6 Croatian uniform, and he was very polite, and my wife believed him.
7 Later, Vukoja turned up with him when they came by car, and then they lost
8 their money and were left on their threshold. That's how it was.
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Murphy.
10 MR. MURPHY: If Ms. Alaburic will allow me just before she
11 resumes, there was an objection made by the Prosecution that
12 Ms. Alaburic's cross-examination was outside the scope of the statement.
13 Your Honour, that's not an objection. There was -- it is true in the case
14 of one witness, Mr. Galbraith, an order was made in his particular case
15 that cross-examination should be limited to the scope of direct
16 examination, but in normal circumstances Rule 90(H) is quite clear that
17 cross-examiner may also go into matters relevant to the case of the
18 cross-examining party even though those matters may not have been dealt
19 with. Your Honour, that's not a proper objection, and Ms. Alaburic's
20 cross-examination, in my submission, was entirely proper.
21 MS. GILLETT: Your Honour, it's not a question of whether the
22 matters have been dealt with or not by the Prosecution. It's a question
23 of the relevance of this witness's evidence, what is in his statement and
24 as it is before the Court. It is not that I have adduced evidence from
25 this witness. The statement is very clear in what it says and the scope
1 of the statement has been also made clear both in terms of the charts that
2 were submitted and the paragraphs to which this statement pertains, and
3 indeed by reading the statement itself.
4 I don't see what relevance that line of questioning has to this
5 witness's evidence, and that's the objection, not whether the Prosecution
6 have dealt with this or not.
7 MR. MURPHY: Your Honour, it's a matter whether the Defence
8 considers that it is relevant to an issue that the Defence wishes to raise
9 and that's not a matter which Ms. Gillett is capable really of dealing
10 with. It's a matter for the discretion of the cross-examiner as long as
11 it appears to the Court to be basically relevant, and that's what
12 Ms. Alaburic was doing.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. For the Judges, all
14 questions are relevant if they relate to the indictment, to the testimony
15 of the witness, to the answers provided to the questions. So up until
16 now, I do not see in what way the Defence would have not followed these
19 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. By your
20 leave, let us clarify what happened in Prozor and Rama after the arrival
21 of the Croats from Bugojno.
22 Q. And I wish to clarify another issue raised in your answer to Judge
23 Antonetti's question, His Honour's question, and that's the possibility
24 that military units of the HVO on the territories of Prozor and Rama could
25 have prevented the activity of the hooligan groups who were causing great
1 harm to the Muslim population. Although you did not engage in politics,
2 Dr. Islamovic, based on the general knowledge of all of us living on the
3 territory of the former Yugoslavia, you will be able to answer the
4 following question: Was the army authorised to issue decisions on dealing
5 with gangs of hooligans, or did the decision on this rest with somebody
7 A. Well, the decision was supposed to be issued by the civilian
8 authorities. The army could carry out such a decision.
9 Q. You mentioned the MUP building. Can you tell us whether at that
10 time on the territory of Prozor or Rama there was a police force? Were
11 there bodies in existence which were supposed to ensure security and
12 safety in the town and in other places? If you don't know, then we can
13 move on.
14 A. No, I really don't know. I think that the policemen whom I knew
15 from before the war and who stayed in the police continued doing their
16 job, but what their powers were and whether they were able to oppose
17 someone --
18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] We need to take the break, but
19 still, that question is of great interest.
20 At the time when you were in Prozor yourself and these gangs were
21 doing what they were doing, at the time were there members of the MUP in
22 Prozor? Were there members of the MUP or had they disappeared? Was there
23 no one left from the MUP?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I didn't go around in the
25 evenings, by night, so I don't know whether there were any police patrols,
1 whether they were actually doing their job. Evidently they weren't doing
2 it very well, because nobody visited these places.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, but assuming that no one
4 went outside because everyone was scared. That's perfectly
5 understandable. But in the morning when these gangs had left, in the
6 morning, what did prevent you or other people to go to the MUP building to
7 report what had happened, to lodge a complaint? Was this possible or was
8 this totally impossible?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't think it was feasible. When
10 these groups first appeared, I know that a group of women went to see
11 Jozic, the president of the municipality. They asked that something be
12 done. They even said, "Give us buses," as Jasurevic gave the Muslims
13 buses in Trebinje. That was seen on television. So they could leave,
14 because the maltreatment by night had become very frequent.
15 A group of women went to Jozic, but it didn't help.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] It's a quarter to 6.00. We
17 have, unfortunately, to take a break. We will resume at five past 6.00,
18 in 20 minutes' time.
19 --- Recess taken at 5.46 p.m.
20 --- On resuming at 6.06 p.m.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The hearing is resumed. But
22 there is a point I wanted to check with you, Witness. In your written
23 statement, you talk about what happened during the night in the month of
24 August, and you mention Papak, the famous Papak. But you also stated that
25 three HVO soldiers came, and earlier on you said there were young people,
1 hooligans, and so on and so forth. But these people who came, were they
2 soldiers of the HVO, because that's what you seem to be saying in your
3 written statement, or were these people young people who -- from whom you
4 do not know if at night they were -- during the day they were HVO soldiers
5 and at night hooligans? Can you please specify that?
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't think they were members of
7 the HVO. That was the unit called the kinder platoon, 20 or 30 young men.
8 I don't think they were in the HVO, but they were armed and they wore
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I'm going to ask the registrar
11 to display page 7 of the written statement of the witness in English.
12 Page 7 in English. Page 0207441.
13 Very well. If you look at the third paragraph, you will see that
14 you state that one night in August, at 2.00, whilst your family and
15 yourself were in the house, three HVO soldiers came in the house. Then
16 you tell about what happened. Here it says three in English. Three
17 soldiers of the HVO came in the house. And then at the next paragraph you
18 state that one of them was called Papak Zoran.
19 So that's what I'm trying to clarify, you see.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. One of them was called Zoran
21 Papak. He drove a white Lada. He was bald, his head was shaved, and he
22 wore an earring. So he was very recognisable.
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Fine. He wore an earring. But
24 I'd like to draw your attention to the fact that at the beginning you
25 stated that three HVO soldiers came to your house.
1 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, yes.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So what happened? Did the
3 investigator misunderstand you? Was there some sort of confusion?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, all those who wore uniforms,
5 that was the HVO. Maybe I didn't -- well, it was an HVO uniform. We
6 considered them to be HVO soldiers. They all wore uniforms.
7 JUDGE TRECHSEL: So would you say that the members of the
8 so-called kinder platoon were HVOs?
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] They wore the same uniform. They
10 were in Prozor. There was no other formation except the HVO there. How
11 else can I explain it?
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] And during that specific night,
13 that night when they came at 2.00, did you see any insignia on their
14 uniform? Did you see an insignia with HVO on it?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I didn't see them at all because I
16 was in the basement. I learned from my wife, who had been there. I
17 didn't see them myself. I didn't dare show myself. I was hiding in the
19 JUDGE MINDUA: [Interpretation] These members of the kinder
20 platoon, you knew them or the other inhabitants of your village knew them.
21 During the day were these people members of HVO units? At night we know
22 that -- what they were doing, but what happened during the day? These
23 people whom you name, Papak, et cetera, were they members of the HVO?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, they were very young, and I
25 their parents, most of them. Later on, I would see them in the town, in
1 the beginning, but who they belonged to I don't know. But the only unit
2 was the HVO, so who else could they belong to but --
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] How old was Papak, roughly?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, they were all between 16 and
5 20 years old.
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] And was Papak closer to 16 than
7 to -- or to 20?
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] He was a little older. Some were
9 very young. Pavkovic was very young. I know his father, and I knew him
10 before the conflict. Vukoja was also young. I knew his father as well,
11 Beljo. I knew some of them.
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] A young Croat in Prozor,
13 20-year-old. Was such a person automatically mobilised into the ranks of
14 the HVO, or was it possible for someone like that remain a civilian? Can
15 you answer that question or not?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't think he was a civilian,
17 because he wore a uniform.
18 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, thank you. We have
19 concluded that I have spent enough time, so I will leave time for my
20 colleagues. Thank you.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Following counsel, please.
22 MS. TOMASEGOVIC TOMIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
23 The counsel of Valentin Coric has no questions for this witness. Thank
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Following counsel.
1 MR. IBRISIMOVIC: [Interpretation] We don't have any questions,
2 Mr. President. Thank you.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Following Defence counsel.
4 MS. TOMANOVIC: [Interpretation] I have maybe 10 minutes or even
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Please proceed. We have plenty
7 of time.
8 Cross-examination by Ms. Tomanovic.
9 Q. [Interpretation] Good afternoon Mr. Islamovic. My name is Suzana
10 Tomanovic. I'm an attorney from Bosnia and Herzegovina, counsel for Dr.
11 Jadranko Prlic. Could we have put on e-court document P 00382. And while
12 we are waiting for the document to show up on the screen, today you said
13 during your testimony something which prompts me to put a question to you.
14 When my colleague Ms. Alaburic showed you this decision on the appointment
15 of the municipal Prozor HVO, you said you recognised all the names and
16 that these men were men in high positions in government.
17 First of all, let me tell you, is it true that Mr. Mijo Jozic, who
18 was appointed president of the HVO in this decision, participated in the
19 first parliamentary elections in Bosnia-Herzegovina, and was he elected
20 president of Prozor municipality?
21 A. Yes. He was a teacher of German, and at the first multi-party
22 elections he was legally elected president of Prozor municipality.
23 Q. So we may conclude that as of the 13th of June, 1992, and Mr. Mate
24 Boban issued the decision on his appointment, as president of the HVO for
25 Prozor municipality, he in fact continued performing a duty for which --
1 or an office for which he had been democratically elected.
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Can you tell me with reference to the other names on this list, do
4 you know what positions they held before the outbreak of the conflict?
5 Nikola Ivic.
6 A. He was a teacher of mechanics in school, and he was the committee
7 secretary for a long time in the party.
8 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's note: The Communist Party, maybe
9 four years or afterwards.
10 MS. TOMANOVIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. And after the election did he have any post?
12 A. Since he was the president of the HVO he was probably in the HVO.
13 Q. No, I was referring to the elections of 1990.
14 A. I don't know that.
15 Q. Do you know about Mr. Ilija Petrovic?
16 A. I think he was the president of the HDZ. I am acquainted with him
17 personally. I met him in the hospital in Rumbovci. He was the president
18 of the HDZ. Whether he was the first president -- well, maybe he was even
19 the first, I don't know, but I do know he was in the HDZ. I'm certain of
21 Q. Mr. Mile Tomic?
22 A. Mr. Mile Tomic had been a politician for many years. He was the
23 director of the UNIS factory for a long time. And just before the war, I
24 don't know what he did.
25 Q. You don't know what office he was elected to at the first
1 multi-party elections?
2 A. I don't know.
3 Q. Mr. Stipo Curic?
4 A. He worked in the Territorial Defence before the war, and here I
5 see that he was in the defence again.
6 Q. Mr. Marko Dragic?
7 A. He was a teacher of literature. For many years he was involved in
8 politics in the socialist league. I think he was the president of the
9 socialist league, Social Alliance or perhaps of the trade union.
10 Q. Mr. Ilija Franic?
11 A. He was an HVO commander before Anto Pavlovic. I know that in the
12 summer of 1993 he was replaced.
13 Q. Do you know what office he held after the multi-party elections?
14 A. I don't know. Until he was appointed to the staff, I don't know
15 what he did. His sister had a house right next to mine. He often came to
16 visit his sister. I knew his father. I don't think he held any office
17 before he was appointed to the staff.
18 Q. And the last on the list, Mr. Marko Loncar?
19 A. He lived in the same building as I did. For 10 or 15 years he was
20 in the municipal authorities. He was the municipal secretary. What else?
21 I don't know any more.
22 Q. You don't know what office he held after the first multi-party
23 elections in 1990?
24 A. I'm sorry, I don't know that. I know them all.
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] You are talking about the
1 elections. Witness, you are talking about the elections that took place
2 in 1990. At the time of the elections of 1990, were Muslims elected to
3 posts within the municipality? Because you, contrary to what you were
4 saying earlier on, you seem to be very familiar with everything, and you
5 seem to know everyone and to know what political side everyone was on.
6 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, there weren't many parties,
7 and it's a small place. Everybody knew everybody more or less. Of
8 course, in 1990 there were Bosniaks in the police, because 35 per cent of
9 the population in the municipality were Bosniaks. So of course they were
10 in the authorities as well, but I don't recall right now who held what
11 post or who was in government.
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Because if we look at the list
13 that we have in front of you, and you know that list because you know all
14 these people, is there a Bosniak amongst them?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In 1990?
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] No, I'm talking about 1993 --
17 no, 1992. I'm talking about the list we have in front of us, the list
18 dated 12th of August, 1992.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] These are the HVO authorities. You
20 can see for yourselves there are no Bosniaks among them.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] And for what reason according to
22 you? Do you have any idea?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was a power held by a single
24 nation. They held all the power. That's how it was.
25 MS. TOMANOVIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. Can you give us the name of at least one Muslim who held an office
2 after the multi-party elections in the municipal authorities in 1990?
3 A. Hujdur was in the municipality. Hujdur. I can't remember his
4 first name. Omer. Omer.
5 Q. Thank you. It's no problem if you can't recall. Just a
6 correction in the transcript. If it's still on the screen, I think that
7 the gentleman said that 35 per cent of the politicians, not the policemen.
8 A. No, no, no. I was referring to the population.
9 Q. So 35 per cent of the population?
10 A. Yes.
11 MS. TOMANOVIC: [Interpretation] That was all. I have no further
13 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours. The Defence
14 of Mr. Stojic has no questions for this witness.
15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Praljak, your Defence
16 counsel does not wish to ask a question, but you do. What question is it
17 that you wish to ask?
18 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation]. Some technical matters. I
19 know the doctor well. I saw him fairly frequently. I was up there fairly
20 often. So perhaps it will be best for us to try and clarify matters to
21 see how they stood.
22 Cross-examination by the Accused Praljak:
23 Q. I am Slobodan Praljak. You are the doctor. We know each other.
24 I'd just like to go through some basics first. I think the main
25 problem we have to clarify is in my view the concept of what was there,
1 the idea of what was going on there. It was very difficult to understand
2 for anyone who wasn't there. It's difficult to understand what was going
3 on up there, so let's try to explain the situation to all the counsel and
4 to Their Honours as well what the situation was like up there.
5 Now, do you remember that the houses of certain Croats were blown
6 up by the Croats themselves, like the house belonging Bakitaric [as
7 interpreted]? Do you remember that those people there --
8 A. Yes. Bakitaric. Drugula Bakitaric, his house, yes.
9 Q. Do you know that those people there whose houses were blown up,
10 that then Jozic the president of the municipality would usually -- that
11 he -- they would come to president of the municipality usually with a
12 pistol and ask for money? Do you know anything about that? Yes, no, you
13 don't know?
14 A. I don't know. All I know is that Markesic's house, as you
15 yourself know, that was one of them. And he was something in Sarajevo, in
16 the HDZ or whatever.
17 Q. They blew his house to smithereens.
18 A. I don't think he agreed politically. They didn't see eye to eye
19 in politics.
20 Q. And Did you know that the president of the municipality, Jozic, at
21 one point in time when he couldn't take it any more, these people coming
22 to him with a pistol got into his car, went to Germany, and never came
23 back to Rama, Prozor, except for a church festival?
24 A. I know that his wife left, too, with the children. They left
25 earlier on and I think he left in 1993 as well.
1 Q. Yes. I apologise for overlapping. Well, yes, at one point he
2 left, too, because he couldn't take it any more. He got into his car and
3 drove off.
4 Now, do you know that a person called Misura from Rama, in the
5 command in Rama, shot a whole burst of gunfire into a young guy from
6 Tomislavgrad, and he was a paraplegic as a result? Did you hear about
8 A. Yes, I did hear about that. I was in the health centre that night
9 when it happened. It happened sometime around 8.00 in the evening.
10 Q. He was a Croat? A Croat shooting at a Croat.
11 A. Yes, I know of that incident.
12 Q. Do you know that these bandits that went around at night at one
13 time destroyed a whole transformer station and there was no electricity
14 for a month and a half?
15 A. In Rumboci yes I heard about that.
16 Q. Yes, in Rama and Rumboci.
17 Yes, I do apologise. I do apologise. We have enough time. I'm
18 going to slow down.
19 Do you know and I'm going to place a document on the ELMO --
20 JUDGE TRECHSEL: At this speed the substance not coming through
21 clearly any more. You have asked about the transformer station. The
22 witness has said -- has named one locality. Then you answered by
23 mentioning two localities. The witness did not confirm the second
24 locality. So it's not just a matter of the comfort of the interpreters
25 but also the Bench.
1 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] Yes, yes. Quite correct.
2 It's a question of logics. Thank you, Your Honour. And it's not always
3 my logics that are at -- to blame but that clock over there. So I keep
4 wanting to speed up.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, it happened in Rumboci.
6 Slobodan Praljak thought it was in Rama. Well, it is in fact in Rama.
7 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation]
8 Q. Yes, it's the same thing.
9 Now, Doctor, do you know how many times the HVO hospital in
10 Rumboci was attacked by those gangs at night? Do you know whether it was
11 attacked in the first place, and then --
12 A. I do know that it was attacked, yes, because I was there once, and
13 on one night it was ridden with bullets -- riddled with bullets.
14 Q. May I now have P 01475 put on the ELMO -- on e-court.
15 MR. KOVACIC: I'm sorry, but the --
16 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] P 01475. P 01475. That's
17 what it says here. That's the number. Here it is. The English version.
18 Q. You can read through this or have a look at it, Doctor. When
19 Dr. Jozo Ivancevic came he informed you that on the 10th of February,
20 1993, at 0400 hours an armed attack was carried out against the military
21 hospital by armed HVO members from the Rama area. And on that occasion,
22 three Zolja type projectiles were launched. And later on in the document
23 we can see what happened after that. The hand-held rocket launcher. And
24 it says that Rama took in 3.560 wounded persons. Nobody complained of
25 their work, but the same hospital was -- had already been attacked four
1 times. You were able to read that just like me; right.
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. Do you know that in Rama 10 commanders of the Rama Brigade were
4 replaced? And I'm just going to read out for 1993 which they were,
5 Mr. Franic, up until the middle of January, 1993, then we have Zutic, then
6 Beljo who died, who was killed, then we have Zelenika and Pavlovic, and so
8 A. Andjelic.
9 Q. Yes, Andjelic and others too. We won't go into that now.
10 Now, do you know that in 1994, for instance, and you had left at
11 that time, but anyway there was a conflict in Rama between the kinder
12 platoon and the Garavi or blacks, with a lot of injured and wounded?
13 Right. We'll go into that next time, on another occasion.
14 Now, do you know that after the conflict that took place in Rama
15 in 1992, in October, I arrived after those conflicts, I arrived up there,
16 and that I stayed in the area until the end of 1992, Christmas of 1992?
17 Do you know that nonetheless we succeeded with all the efforts that we
18 invested to calm the situation down and to keep it under control in that
19 turmoil of war right up until the all-out conflicts between the two armies
20 of Bosnia and Herzegovina? As a doctor, were you aware of this?
21 A. Yes, partially.
22 Q. Right, partially. I'd just like to ask you this now: Would you
23 tell me -- or, rather, here in your statement -- I'm not quite sure, but I
24 think --
25 JUDGE TRECHSEL: I'm sorry. You have made a rather long statement
1 where you have given a lot of information, and then the witness
2 says, "Yes, I partially agree." This is of zero worth for the Bench,
3 because we do not to what he actually agrees. There's a whole parcel of
5 I think it would be preferable if you could cut it down. One
6 question, one answer. Because otherwise we are lost. I'm sorry.
7 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] Your Honour, you're quite
8 right. I cannot, in view of the fact that this witness was not in
9 politics or anything else, I can only ask him some limited information,
10 whether after 1992 for a long time we were able to maintain some sort of
11 law and order, all of us together. When I say "us," I mean all of us
12 together although I wasn't there for quite some time. So that's all I
13 wanted to ask and establish.
14 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] General Praljak asked you the
15 question, Witness, and he said that he arrived in the area and that
16 according to him, and that's his analysis of the situation, the situation
17 calmed down, because before he arrived, as he said, there were problems
19 Now, did you notice that? Did you notice tangible change once
20 General Praljak had arrived? Your answer was yes. You said "yes,
21 partially," but could you tell us what that yes referred to and explain?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I don't know what General
23 Praljak arrived exactly but after the first conflicts in Prozor in 1992,
24 October, or rather the 23rd of October 1992, up until, let's say, May when
25 the conflicts in Jablanica, Konjic and Mostar broke out, not many
1 things -- many not terrible things happened if you compare this to the
2 situation later on when the conflict broke out in Jablanica, Konjic,
3 Mostar, and so on and so forth.
4 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Thank you. There's a problem that we have to clear up here. When
6 in France, for example, or in America we meet a soldier wearing a uniform
7 and we see that he has done something, then with a great degree of
8 certainty we can assume that he's a French soldier or an American soldier.
9 Now, here the problem is this: With the HVO and -- or BH army, we have
10 the following problem, and do you share my opinion? I'd like to ask you
11 that, that everybody could buy a uniform and wear a uniform and that
12 everybody wore a uniform, both people in --
13 MS. GILLETT: [Previous translation continues] ... defendant keeps
14 making these statements all the time and not putting questions to this
15 witness. Are we to assume that Mr. Praljak is now giving evidence not
16 under oath? I'm just at a loss as far as where this is going.
17 MR. KOVACIC: If I may --
18 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] Just a moment, please,
19 madam. Just a moment. My question was very clear. Does the doctor --
20 MS. GILLETT: I hadn't actually heard a question.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, please proceed,
22 Mr. Praljak.
23 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation]
24 Q. Does the doctor share my opinion, does the doctor agree when I say
25 that an HVO uniform of the uniform of the BH army was a uniform that
1 anybody could buy and wear at any time regardless of whether he was in a
2 unit or not, whether it was an HVO unit or BH army unit? So does the
3 doctor share my opinion? He can say no, but my question is quite clear.
4 A. All men, and women, too, who were active wore uniforms, camouflage
5 uniforms with HVO insignia, as far as I know.
6 Q. And did people wear uniforms who were just able to buy uniforms
7 with this HVO insignia who had nothing to do with the army at all?
8 A. Well, they didn't have to even buy uniforms because there were so
9 many uniforms readily available. They could just put on a uniform.
10 Anybody could.
11 Q. Yes, that's quite clear. That's my first question and the answer
12 to it. Now, my second question --
13 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Dr. Islamovic, you said that everybody had walked
14 around in an HVO uniform; right? Did you, for instance, walk around in an
15 HVO uniform?
16 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
17 JUDGE TRECHSEL: So it was not everybody.
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I had my white doctor's coat, and I
19 was in the health centre, and when I went home I was wearing civilian
20 clothes in 1993, when I was off duty.
21 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation]
22 Q. Doctor, you know the area well. Now, how many villages and
23 hamlets are there in the Prozor municipality? Roughly speaking, 50, 60,
24 70, how many?
25 A. About 50.
1 Q. Now, during the day was the situation tolerable and intolerable
2 during the night? That's my question. During the day was there some sort
3 of law and order? And then night came, night fell, and 50 villages and
4 hamlets were raided by gangs who were out of control. So I'm just trying
5 to check what kind of power and authority anybody had, responsibility,
6 individuals, groups of individuals, what kind of power could they have,
7 could they control 50 or 60 villages and hamlets when night-time came and
8 these gangs turned up, with the best will in the world were they able to
9 do anything?
10 A. Well, it was very difficult to control the situation, yes.
11 Usually they would get to the nearer villages, but the far-off villages,
12 I'm thinking about the Bosniak inhabitants, after April, 1993, for
13 instance, one by one towards Jablanica, the border towards Jablanica, the
14 area was set on fire. The army, the soldiers, would turn up and expel the
15 population and force them closer and closer into town.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Doctor, I have a question, a
17 follow-up question. You yourself, when you were in Prozor, did you have a
18 vehicle of some sort, a car?
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] All the cars were confiscated from
20 the Muslims after the conflict in 1992, in October. After that, if
21 somebody managed to hide something somewhere but no had a car. Nobody had
22 a telephone. They had switched off all the telephones. And I didn't have
23 a car either.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Now, did you ever
25 leave Prozor to have to go to some of the neighbouring villages, for
2 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Never?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I wanted to know whether in case
6 you had to leave town whether you went through any checkpoints, but you
7 tell me that you didn't leave town.
8 Continue, Mr. Praljak.
9 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Well, still a question in relation to this. If
10 you never left Prozor, how can you as a witness under oath talk about 50,
11 60 hamlets in the whole area of Prozor? If you have not been there,
12 how -- how come you know? Are you an expert in this area?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, I said that I had been a
14 physician for 15 years in that particular municipality, so I knew all
15 those villages and hamlets and visited them thousands of times more or
16 less. And there's not a single village or hamlet or house where I had not
17 been at some time for vaccines, for home visits, things like that. I went
18 to all the schools, visited all the schools, so I know the whole area.
19 JUDGE TRECHSEL: I am not -- I am not doubting that at all, but
20 the questions relate to what happened in -- mainly in 1993. That's what
21 your testimony is about. And at that time you had no possibility to go
22 there. So how do you know what happened at that time in those hamlets?
23 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Well, you hear about things. You
24 hear about everything. If there's a problem somewhere, people hear about
25 it. Somebody from the village comes into town. A villager turns up. You
1 hear about someone being expelled and that the village or hamlet had been
2 torched, things like that. But no, I didn't go. Of course not.
3 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Thank you.
4 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Just a few more questions, Doctor. You will remember that apart
6 from the Territorial Defence and the HVO in 1992 there was the HOS. HOS
7 was in the area with its military organisation, with its army, with its
8 weapons; is that correct?
9 A. Correct.
10 Q. Thank you. And one more thing. When you were expelled from your
11 job, that was when Bugojno fell or liberation of Bugojno, depending on
12 which side you're on, how you look at things, anyway in that place,
13 Bugojno, according to our records there are about 3.700 HVO soldiers and
14 many more thousand civilians from there and the surrounding villages, and
15 they all came in, whether by car or on foot. And apart from that is that
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And the offensive launched by the BH army continued towards Vakuf
19 with the clear military desire to control and take over Vakuf, Uskoplje?
20 MS. GILLETT: [Previous translation continues] ... questions.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Counsel Gillett. I don't
22 understand your objection because the witness of his own accord did say
23 that following on from the Bugojno events he was up on the hill and he saw
24 columns of cars and buses arriving.
25 Now, the question is quite logical, and I myself was going to ask
1 it. Go ahead.
2 Sit down, please.
3 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation]
4 Q. Thank you. Doctor, in the population census of 1992 in Prozor,
5 Rama, there were 12.300 Croats, Croat inhabitants, roughly, and then as
6 many came in from Bugojno, plus the people that were there beforehand.
7 Would that be correct? Is that correct?
8 A. Yes.
9 UNIDENTIFIED SPEAKER: [Interpretation] He said yes.
10 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpratation] Yes.
11 Q. So we now see something that I wish to establish with your help.
12 In an area that was destroyed such as Rama, with tense inter-ethnic
13 relations, you had as many Croat inhabitants coming in as lived in that
14 place under normal conditions. Was that the situation? Was that the
15 picture? Was that the kind of situation that we had to deal with?
16 A. Well, as soon as you had so many people coming in there was a
17 problem, the problem of accommodation, the problem of soldiers and so on.
18 Q. And what you said, Doctor, when the women came to ask for buses to
19 leave the area, do you share my opinion that the most terrible thing for
20 responsible individuals was at that time that feeling of impotence, their
21 impotence to prevent what they felt was going to happen and did not
22 allow -- could not let people go into other areas where they thought there
23 would be ethnic cleansing? I think that's the number one dilemma that was
24 posed during that war.
25 A. Well, I don't know. I really can't say.
1 Q. Because Jozic, for example --
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Praljak, just a moment.
3 General Praljak has just said that there were thousands of Croats
4 coming in from Bugojno, and you yourself, on the basis of what I was able
5 to understand, were a spectator. You observed those people.
6 Now, among all those people arriving, pouring in, were there any
7 HVO soldiers amongst the people? Not from Prozor but who were coming in
8 from Bugojno. Did you see them arrive? Did you see HVO soldiers coming
10 A. That morning when I set out from my flat in my car, it was a
11 Renault 4, I saw -- there's just one street. I saw lots of uniformed
12 soldiers mixed with civilians coming in from Bugojno.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Now, your Renault 4 car, it
14 hadn't been confiscated yet then?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Not my car. I said that it was
16 actually my neighbour's car. He was from down by Jablanica way, so he
17 transported us for 20 marks a distance of 20 kilometres.
18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. And you said that
19 you saw uniformed soldiers; is that right.
20 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] And those uniformed soldiers
22 coming from Bugojno on the basis of what you were aware of or came to know
23 about, did they stay in the area or did they go on elsewhere?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I can't answer that. I don't know
25 how many of them stayed in Prozor. I think some of them stayed in Prozor
1 and others went to Croatia perhaps and so on.
2 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation]
3 Q. Doctor, my last question -- or, rather, I'd just like to check
4 something out. In your statement you say that two prisoners turned up.
5 One was Perviz, hit in his abdominal area with a bullet and the other was
6 Dervis hit in the back and the bullet remained in his body. Am I right in
7 thinking that they did manage to transport them to the hospital in Split?
8 A. I think you're wrong on that score because this man Perviz, who
9 was shot in the stomach, well, he would have of died had he actually been
10 hit in the stomach. But it was an entry/exit wound. It went through one
11 part of his tissue and exited. Whereas the other man was probably shot
12 from a distance and the bullet was lodged just underneath his skin here.
13 So they weren't seriously wounded. That's what happened.
14 Q. I just wanted to check that out, because I seem to remember that
15 we used a helicopter to transport some wounded Muslims, whether a woman or
16 who I don't know.
17 A. No, these men were not seriously injured.
18 Q. Doctor, thank you for everything. Thank you for coming, and thank
19 you for telling us truthfully what happened. So I thank you in my own
21 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honours,
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you. Very well. All the
24 Defence counsel have conducted their cross-examinations. Are there any
25 additional questions from the Prosecution, because we still have several
1 minutes left? Madam Gillett.
2 MS. GILLETT: Thank you, Your Honour. No, no questions from the
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Doctor, on behalf of
5 the Judges before you, I should like to thank you to coming to The Hague
6 to testify. I wish you a bon voyage back home and would like to say thank
7 you for your testimony. I'm going to ask the usher to escort you out of
8 the courtroom now.
9 [The witness withdrew]
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Now, with respect to the
11 tendering of exhibits, I turn to the Prosecution first. Any documents to
12 tender, Ms. Gillett? Prosecution exhibits which you would like to tender?
13 MS. GILLETT: Your Honour, I believe that I already tendered them
14 at the close of questions from the Prosecution. Thank you.
15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
16 What about the Defence?
17 MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, just one document. P
18 01475. It is a document presented to the witness about the shelling of
19 the hospital by the HVO.
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Counsel Alaburic.
21 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, just one exhibit.
22 Prosecution Exhibit P 00382. It is a decision by Mate Boban on the
23 appointment of the municipal Prozor HVO.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. The Chamber
25 accords -- admits these documents into evidence, the witness statement, as
1 well as the documents presented to the witness, which were referenced
2 under the following numbers: 344 -- 3091, 3286, 4193, 8994, 8998, 9685,
3 9686, 9687, and also the Defence exhibits, documents P 01475 for
4 Mr. Kovacic and Exhibit P 00382 for Counsel Alaburic. That's the
5 documents taken care of.
6 Now, for tomorrow, Mr. Mundis, what is the programme.
7 MR. MUNDIS: Thank you, Mr. President. Your Honours, tomorrow we
8 will commence with the witness Mulahusic whose testimony will be led by
9 Rule 89(F). My understanding from speaking to one of my colleagues is the
10 next witness on the schedule will also be a Rule 89(F) witness, which is a
11 change in the plans in order to expedite the proceedings for this week
12 followed by the final witness scheduled who we previously announced would
13 be a Rule 89(F) witness as well with the consequence, Your Honours, that
14 the remaining witnesses for this week will all be led by way of Rule 89(F)
15 so as to maximise the likelihood that we will finish hearing these three
16 witnesses during the two days that are left for us this week.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Everything is
18 crystal clear now.
19 As you know, we will reconvene tomorrow at a quarter past 2.00. I
20 hope that Mr. Pusic will get well in the meantime, and I'll see you
21 tomorrow. Thank you very much.
22 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 6.57 p.m.,
23 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 20th day
24 of September, 2006, at 2.15 p.m.