1 Monday, 7 May 2007
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 --- Upon commencing at 2.15 p.m.
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Please call the case.
6 THE REGISTRAR: Good afternoon, Your Honour. This is case number
7 IT-04-74-T, the Prosecutor versus Prlic et al.
8 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Registrar.
9 Today I'm glad to greet all the people present here, the
10 Prosecution, the Defence counsel, as well as the accused, and also all the
11 people helping us in the courtroom.
12 First of all, I am going to read out an oral decision.
13 Thereafter, I'll give the floor to Mr. Scott, who has something to say
14 regarding changes within the OTP.
15 Oral decision regarding documents introduced through the testimony
16 of Mr. Herbert Okun.
17 The witness appeared before the Trial Chamber from the 2nd to the
18 5th of April, 2007. During his testimony, he was shown a certain number
19 of documents by the parties, and some were mere excerpts. Following the
20 testimony of the witness, the parties submitted their IC lists of exhibits
21 they wanted to tender into evidence. To date, in spite of the request
22 made by the Trial Chamber through the court deputy, the Prosecution has
23 yet to identify the excerpts presented to the witness and to be tendered
24 into evidence.
25 The Trial Chamber wants to recall that following the guideline
1 number 4 attached to the decision on the admission of evidence of 13th of
2 July, 2006, when a party submits only an excerpt of a document at the
3 hearing it may only ask for that excerpt to be tendered into evidence, and
4 it is under the obligation of conveying to a Chamber the numbers of -- or
5 the page numbers or paragraph that correspond to the excerpts.
6 Once again, the Trial Chamber invites the Prosecution to file a
7 new IC list specifying the page numbers or the numbers of the pages
8 presented to Witness Herbert Okun at the hearing and that the Prosecution
9 wants to seek to tender into evidence. The Trial Chamber reminds the
10 Prosecution that it will be able to seek to tender document that would not
11 have been presented to the witness during the hearing through another
12 witness or by way of a written motion pursuant to guideline number 6 of
13 the 29th of November, 2006 decision. So in a nutshell, the Prosecution
14 will have to submit a new IC list with regard to the excerpts presented to
15 the witness.
16 If the Prosecution plans to seek to tender other excerpts that
17 have not been submitted to the witness, it will be able to do so through
18 another witness or else file a written motion seeking admission under or
19 pursuant to guideline number 6 of the decision of the 29th of November,
21 So this was the oral decision. You have the floor, Mr. Scott,
22 because I believe there's a change within the Prosecution team.
23 MR. SCOTT: Yes, Your Honour. Mr. President, Your Honours, good
24 afternoon; and good afternoon to everyone in the courtroom.
25 Before I turn to that matter, I just will say I appreciate the
1 Court's further guidance on the matter of the Okun exhibits. This was a
2 situation in which there was some agreement -- both agreement and
3 disagreement with the Prlic team because I believe it was their position
4 that they asked or had hoped that all of the diaries would come in. The
5 Prosecution share that same position although we disagreed on other
6 aspects of the submission. So I do appreciate nonetheless the Chamber's
7 additional guidance and we will make -- we will follow our new IC listing
8 in the next day or two. I thank the Chamber for that.
9 Your Honour, I come to the Chamber this afternoon with somewhat --
10 well, mixed emotions, because I have to advise the Chamber and to all
11 those in the courtroom that our Prosecution team is losing -- will be
12 losing in the next several weeks a member who I believe has been of great
13 assistance both to me personally and to -- I hope to the Chamber and to
14 the -- and to the case in general. All of you know that Mr. Mundis has
15 been my right-hand man or colleague or co-equals here in this case, and
16 has done a great job in my view in terms of the contribution he's made to
17 the case. However, all along the way he has been the senior trial
18 attorney assigned to the Delic case and given changes, which sometimes
19 happen from time to time in this institution in terms of scheduling, the
20 trial of the Delic case has been moved up to probably start relatively
21 soon. Not -- an exact date has not been set, but sometime fairly soon,
22 which, of course, unfortunately, certainly for me and I think for all of
23 us, it's unfortunate that Mr. Mundis will not be able to continue with us.
24 But he isn't gone yet. I think you will still be seeing him in the
25 courtroom for a bit longer. But today seemed like the best time to begin
1 to make the transition for a number of reasons.
2 Having said all that, that's the bad news, and at least again from
3 my perspective the good news is that Mr. Douglas Stringer is joining the
4 team and is also with us today, and Douglas, you might just stand up so
5 everyone can see who you are. Unfortunately Judge Trechsel is probably
6 behind the pole.
7 MR. STRINGER: Good afternoon, Mr. President and Your Honours.
8 MR. SCOTT: Very briefly, Your Honour, if the Court would allow
9 me, Mr. Stringer has been practising law since 1984, so he has substantial
10 years in the practice of law. He has been both a Prosecutor and a Defence
11 attorney. As a Prosecutor he worked at the US Department of Justice from
12 1985 to 1989. Then he served very well here at the OTP from 1997 to 2002.
13 During that time he worked very closely on the Blaskic case and on the
14 so-called Tuta-Stela or Naletilic-Martinovic case. He therefore does
15 bring with him extensive background in what we might call the Bosnian
16 Croat cases. And as the Chamber knows, there is some similarity or
17 relation between the Tuta-Stela case in particular and this case.
18 So unfortunately for the team, and for the Prosecution team and
19 for me, if there's one person who might be able to step into in some way
20 the shoes of Mr. Mundis and come in from outside the institution with some
21 relevant background and training and experience, it's certainly
22 Mr. Stringer, and so I'm happy to have him coming on board with us.
23 Just another couple of seconds about his background. He served
24 very well in a number of international positions. He was an international
25 prosecutor with the United Nations Mission in Kosovo, UNMIK, in 2004, so
1 he has served in that capacity. During 2005 he was an international
2 lawyer working in Sarajevo on the newly created Special Chamber or State
3 Court for War Crimes. So the Chamber can see he brings a diverse and rich
4 set of experiences to his time on this team. During other parts of his
5 career, including most recently, he has practiced in the area of criminal
6 defence, including especially black collar crime, so he does bring both
7 prosecution and defence experience to the Prosecution team. So I thank
8 you, Your Honour and Mr. President, for allowing me to introduce him
9 today, and again he will be making the transition into the team over the
10 next weeks and probably won't be here every day but he and Mr. Mundis will
11 be both making -- both making the transition in and out of the case.
12 Thank you.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Scott.
14 On behalf of my colleagues, I wish you welcome, Mr. Stringer.
15 You're going to help Mr. Scott in the next few months, and I wish you
17 Let me use this opportunity to tell you, Mr. Mundis, how sad we
18 are to see you go. We know you are being called to work in another trial,
19 in the Delic case, and given the resources in the OTP, we -- you have to
20 find a substitute for you, Mr. Mundis, and this is why you're leaving us.
21 We've known you for a year now on this case. I personally have known you
22 for over three years, since you were representing the OTP in the other
23 trial presided over, Hadzihasanovic and Kubura. And, Mr. Mundis, you
24 always provable to be a very convivial man, always a smile on your face,
25 and you were very useful on our on-site visit. So I want to pay tribute
1 to you, wish you good luck within your next mission in this Tribunal.
2 MR. MURPHY: Your Honour, may we be associated with what
3 Your Honour has said. We will regards Mr. Mundis as a great loss to the
4 trial. His -- I think his willingness to assist everyone, his sense of
5 fairness have been very obvious to all of us and we wish him the best in
6 his new endeavours and, who knows, he may be back before the trial ends.
7 We also join in welcoming Mr. Stringer on board, of course.
8 MR. MUNDIS: I just wish to add thank you very much. We can now
9 move on so this incident isn't the cause for complaints of loss of time.
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Well, we have a witness. Before
11 speaking about the time the witness will take, I'm going to give the court
12 deputy the floor because he's still in position just as well.
13 THE REGISTRAR: Thank you very much, Your Honours. Several
14 parties have submitted lists of documents to be tendered through which is
15 Lizde Alija. The list submitted by the open shall be given Exhibit number
16 IC 531. The list submitted by 1D shall be given Exhibit number IC 532.
17 The list submitted by 2D shall be given Exhibit number IC 533. The list
18 submitted by 3D shall be given Exhibit number IC 534. And finally, the
19 list submitted by 5D shall be given Exhibit number IC 535.
20 Thank you very much.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you very much,
22 Mr. Registrar.
23 With regard to the next witness the OTP scheduled six hours. The
24 Defence teams will also have six hours. There are six accused.
25 Therefore, that is an hour for each accused, but they, if they so wish,
1 split that differently. So this is how we're going to go about this
2 hearing. This testimony should take four days.
3 Madam Registrar --
4 MR. KARNAVAS: Your Honour, before --
5 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Karnavas.
6 MR. KARNAVAS: Before we have the witness, I indicated to the
7 registrar that I wanted to make two very brief oral submissions. One is
8 in regard to -- on last Wednesday there was an observation made from the
9 Bench, actually a ruling, I should say, that one federal rules of evidence
10 may be applying, that is Rule 611. Some of us are familiar with that
11 rule. And based on that, I guess I would like to know what other rules of
12 evidence from the US federal rules of evidence are being applied in this
13 Tribunal or if all of them; if not, some of them. If other rules of
14 evidence are being applied from other jurisdictions, I would like to know
15 as well, because, and this is where I guess the crux of my concern is,
16 Judge Trechsel indicated that answers to leading questions are of little
17 value, and over the past few days I've been thinking about that, and I'm
18 extremely concerned. As you might recall, I even give -- gave
19 Judge Trechsel the -- the opportunity to perhaps correct himself, but if
20 that is the case, that means that all leading questions for the last year
21 that have been posed by counsel for the Defence, as they are entitled to
22 under the rules, have little value. The answers, that is, from those
23 leading questions. And this seems to be a new rule, a rule that I wasn't
24 aware of. My colleagues aren't aware of it. And in fact, I checked the
25 jurisprudence and I cannot find any jurisprudence that allows that, and
1 I'm not convinced that that is the rule in any other jurisdiction,
2 national jurisdiction. I've looked for it. I'm not saying that it don't
3 exist. It may exist in someplace, but I'm not aware of it, and I know
4 certainly in the United States since we're going to be applying the
5 federal rules of evidence it would be a mistrial if a Judge were to say to
6 the jurors, "Pay little value, give little value to answers that come
7 from -- from answers from leading questions."
8 The whole purpose of cross-examination is that. So I'm concerned.
9 I would like to know who else on the Bench shares that, because if there
10 are others then we are even more concerned. And of course this may, and I
11 saw this with all due respect, this also may explain why during the
12 proceedings over the last year the Defence has been rushed. If the Trial
13 Chamber is of the opinion that answers from leading questions are
14 irrelevant or have little value, it does two things. One, it means that
15 you are forcing us to ask on cross-examination non-leading questions,
16 which is not consistent with the Rules, but also you're forcing us to put
17 on a case because that would be the only way for us to at least get
18 evidence before the Tribunal which it would -- it believed would have some
19 value, unless of course we conducted cross-examination by asking
20 open-ended questions, and again that is not the process. That is not the
21 procedure. That is not what is being done in other trials. And so I'm
22 concerned of this, because, you know, we need some answer. I can file a
23 written motion if you wish. But I'm concerned it was may become
24 necessary, for at least the Prlic Defence, to determine whether it should
25 request that certain witnesses be brought back to be fully cross-examined.
1 And secondly, whether a mistrial should be declared and to have the trial
2 start all over again, or perhaps other remedies should be sought such
3 as -- well, a whole new trial from the beginning with new Judges.
4 I mention that. I do this with respect, but I am concerned that
5 if we have been -- after a year labouring under the impression that
6 answers from leading questions should have the value whatever the Judges
7 wishes to give it based on the principle of free evaluation of evidence,
8 which is essentially what has been adopted in this Tribunal, then I think
9 that the rules have been changed without giving notice to the parties and
10 without giving them an opportunity to be heard. That's my first
12 My second submission would be, and it's in regard somewhat to the
13 Okun diaries, because as you note we submitted extensive documentation as
14 to what we intended to go into, and Mr. Scott is correct, we had moved for
15 the entire diary to come in. We still think it should come in. It's fair
16 to both parties. But I use this just as an example.
17 Under Rule 82, which concerns joinder and separate trials, it
18 would appear that because of the time limitations there seems to be a
19 violation of this particular Rule because the accused are not accorded the
20 same rights as if such accused were being tried separately. And I am
21 speaking primarily on behalf of Mr. Prlic. He has indicated in the past
22 himself, and I have done so on his behalf, that we have been denied at
23 times the opportunity to fully cross-examine because time had to be
24 divided among the accused. Mr. Prlic doesn't wish to fight with the other
25 accused to try to grab their time, nor should he have to. Each accused
1 should be tried separately in a sense, and so we would also move for a
2 separate trial, for severance, and it could be done one of two ways.
3 Physically give us a separate trial, or when it comes to the
4 computation of time, the time computed for Mr. Prlic, and I would suggest
5 this be done for the other accused, although I don't wish to -- I don't
6 speak for them, but their -- their lawyers can speak up, that the
7 computation of time should be as if that accused is being tried separately
8 and not as a whole. And I say this because you have accused with different
9 positions, number one. And number two, you have accused who are at
10 different levels. Some are civilians; some are military. They have
11 different -- different strategies. And so if we look at the Rules on the
12 protections of the rights of the accused, I think that you have to read
13 Rule 82 in conjunction with Article 21 of the Statute. So based on --
14 based on what has been happening, especially with some witnesses, not all,
15 but with some critical witnesses, we feel that Mr. Prlic's right to be
16 tried as if he's being tried separately and afforded all of his rights,
17 not some of his rights, not part of his rights, not rights in conjunction
18 with other accused, for all those reasons we ask that his case be severed
19 from the rest.
20 So I have two oral submissions. One, I wish to know who else
21 among the Bench is of the opinion that answers from leading questions have
22 little value. I also wish to know are we applying all of the rules of the
23 federal rules of evidence? Are we applying some? What are the rules that
24 we are applying so we at least have some guidance. And of course, the
25 second motion is for severance.
1 I do so without filing written motions only because I think it
2 saves time, and I don't wish to prolong the situation, but I think this is
3 of a critical issue that should be dealt with as expeditiously as
4 possible, and if we could file motions it should be done so with the
5 expectation that the parties be given shorter time to respond and to
7 Thank you. And I don't know if my colleagues wish to add to any
8 of this, but I certainly have not consulted them with this, these two
10 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Ms. Alaburic.
11 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, the Defence of
12 General Petkovic is equally highly concerned and shares the concern of
13 Mr. Karnavas and the Prlic Defence with respect to the statement made by
14 Judge Trechsel last week with respect to the relatively --
15 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Listen to my answer first, perhaps.
16 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] -- cross-examination. I do
17 apologise but I'd like to add something.
18 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The problem with regard to
19 translation, interpretation. I can't hear you, the French interpretation.
20 Could you please resume.
21 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] I was saying that I completely
22 share the Defence of Mr. Prlic with respect to the mention made by
23 Mr. Trechsel last week, the statement made by Judge Trechsel, but with
24 respect to the proposal of measures, I do think we should hear the
25 explanations given by Judge Trechsel, because from the proceedings so far
1 we could conclude that Judge Trechsel was not referring to
2 cross-examination and leading questions and did not mean what one would be
3 able to conclude from what he said last week.
4 Now, with respect to the oral submissions of Mr. Karnavas, I would
5 like to remind you that the Defence of General Petkovic reminded the Trial
6 Chamber several times that all rights should be accorded to the accused on
7 all questions with respect -- on all questions and with respect to the
8 question of time that the Defence has. We always indicated this fact and
9 the fact that we must have as much time as if we were conducting
10 individual trials. So I would like to express my agreement with
11 everything that Mr. Karnavas said.
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Kovacic.
13 MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I think that you were
14 about to give Judge Trechsel the floor beforehand, but if you want to hear
15 from all parties, I'll be brief, just to say that I completely agree with
16 Mr. Karnavas's proposal, and mutatis mutandis we need to understand what
17 he said with respect to his client, Mr. Prlic, and again for my accused,
18 Mr. Praljak. But I'm very interested in hearing the positions that
19 Judge Trechsel has to state.
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Before Judge Trechsel speaks,
21 let's hear Mr. Scott.
22 MR. SCOTT: Your Honour, if I --
23 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please, Mr. --
24 MR. SCOTT: I think the Chamber knows that I try to be economic
25 with my time and I try to keep my comments as brief and concise as
1 possible but sometimes I feel if I don't say something, that somehow will
2 then come back to the disadvantage of the Prosecution either now or at
3 some point in the future. So I do want to address this briefly. First
4 off, Your Honour, in my long years of practice, most of which has been in
5 the common law system up until the last nine years, I have heard comments
6 frankly similar to the one Judge Trechsel made. I've heard that comment
7 made a number of times and in fact I think even in this courtroom I've
8 heard some of the Defence counsel say they'd rather hear a narrative of
9 the witness and hear the witness's own answers as opposed to the words and
10 answers of counsel. So in that context and I think to be fair to
11 Judge Trechsel the comment I made -- perhaps he wanted to be provocative
12 and unusual but I have to say it's not that unusual. I've heard similar
13 statements to that made over the almost 30 years of my practice, and it
14 has always, virtually always better to it hear the narrative and the words
15 of a witness, be it a Prosecution witness or a Defence witness, than the
16 words of counsel in most instances, and I think that statements should be
17 made in that context.
18 Number two, of course this institution draws on a wide body of
19 law. Not that it's controlling, but there is a wealth of law out there
20 that's developed over the past number of -- of thousands of years,
21 different codes, the civil law system, the American system, of course the
22 English system. I see Mr. Stewart's not here, but I also indicate since
23 he also likes to defend the English system. But we draw on wisdom from
24 everywhere, and I don't think again Judge Trechsel's comments were made to
25 say that we are, you know, wholesale incorporating the federal rules of
1 evidence from the US federal system. I don't think we take the rules from
2 any national system. We do look at various systems for wisdom and the
3 things that we can learn from those systems and the points of law that
4 many of them have in common. Many of them have common principles
5 somewhat -- with some variations, and I don't think there's anything
6 unusual about what again Judge Trechsel has said in this regard.
7 Sometimes we may refer to the law of France. Some day we may refer to the
8 law of England and Wales, maybe Swiss law and Hungarian law, searching for
9 the law that best suits the situation in reaching and doing substantive
10 fairness. I'm sure that's the spirit in which the comment was made, and
11 we object to -- we oppose the motion that's been made, and hope it will be
12 taken, those comments, in that context. Thank you.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. Scott.
14 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Thank you, Mr. President. I have the floor.
15 I must say I have listened with amazement and shaking my head at
16 that long speech Mr. Karnavas gave which I think is a thing completely
17 made up due to a misunderstanding which I find very difficult to
18 understand how the misunderstanding could have come up.
19 I recall the context in which this observation was made, namely in
20 an accused questioning a witness not in the area covered -- covered by
21 main examination, which means that in fact he was conducting a direct
22 examination of the witness.
23 Now, direct examination is not supposed to be given by ways of --
24 of leading questions, and you, Mr. Karnavas, have sometimes used this even
25 when it was not appropriate. You have intervened I don't know how many
1 times on this. And the reason makes sense, because if you throw a series
2 of sentences which contain the answer to witness and he just says yes or
3 no, you don't know what the witness actually knows himself. He doesn't
4 give any of his information, and in this sense I think leading questions
5 rightfully should be banned from direct examination, be it direct
6 examination of one party or the other, and be it direct examination, as it
7 were, in the void, or direct examination which is for reasons of
8 practicality accepted in the framework of cross-examination.
9 In no way could one in good faith interpret my remark as saying
10 that in cross-examination there is no value in leading questions. I have
11 not said that. I have never meant it. And I must say I'm very amazed
12 that this should be alleged in my face.
13 MR. KARNAVAS: Judge Trechsel, and other Judges, on May 2nd, 2007,
14 in the transcript page 17896, line 21, to 17897, I believe it's line 2,
15 that's where everything all lies. So I'm just looking at what was on the
17 I understand the context. I understand Rule 611, and 611, there's
18 a whole body of law we can address that. And also if you look at 611
19 carefully, you will see that even if you go outside the scope of direct
20 examination, if you were to be questioning on one's credibility, leading
21 questions are permitted under Rule 611. But be that as it may, this is
22 what you stated, sir: "There is no justification for the Defence going
23 into new terrain on a technique that is not allowed on direct but only on
24 cross." Fair enough. Then you go on. "But let me add that at any way
25 answers to leading questions are of little evidentiary value. So the rule
1 in fact goes in favour of the Defence but it's matter of technique."
2 Now, if you look at what you've said, it could be interpreted in
3 one of two ways. Then later on during that -- I do make my record, as is
4 my habit, because I want clarification, and I do ask. I say, "I just -- I
5 just wanted to raise an objection on the record that I don't subscribe to
6 the notion that answers to leading questions are of little evidentiary
7 value. I think this is an incorrect statement of the law, and I think
8 that you have to go on a case-by-case basis, but I am sure that
9 Your Honour didn't actually -- meant literally what --" and I'm cut off at
10 that point.
11 The whole purpose of me raising it at that point in time, and I
12 looked at you, I remember that moment. I looked because I thought perhaps
13 it was a slip of the tongue, perhaps you needed to clarify. But no
14 clarification came. Now, I don't want to be, later on, on appeal, if I
15 have to raise an issue, and they say, Well, wait a second, you haven't got
16 an answer to the question that you posed based on an objection so
17 therefore you either waived it or the interpretation can be given as the
18 one that was provided by Mr. Scott.
19 So that was the whole purpose. And so based -- if we but it into
20 context and what you said, I was -- I was left with the impression, and in
21 fact I commented and I asked a lot of lawyers over the weekend, perhaps 20
22 or 30 Defence lawyers, do they know if this is -- if this is the rule over
24 So if you're telling us now, Judge Trechsel, that the comment that
25 leading questions are of no -- answers to leading questions have little
1 value, if we are talking about areas where direct examination should be
2 conducted, I whole-heartedly subscribe to that. That's the purpose of
3 asking direct examination of your own witnesses to get their testimony.
4 It is their testimony, not the Prosecution's testimony.
5 If you're saying that in asking a compound question where there
6 may be many different answers to the question because it's compound, yes
7 to one part, no to another and what have you, maybe to a third, then I
8 would agree that the trier of fact would have a very difficult time in
9 assessing what is that one answer yes to? Is it yes to the first part,
10 the second part, or the third part. And of course that is -- in that
11 event it is the poor technique of the trial lawyer that is at fault.
12 If on the other hand what you're saying is irrespective of the
13 answer that one gets on cross-examination, in other words, if he gets a
14 yes or a no answer from a leading question, that the Trial Chamber will
15 assess that particular answer in context with the question in applying the
16 free evaluation of evidence as is normally done in this Tribunal because
17 it has adopted for all intents and purposes the continental approach of
18 evaluating the evidence, hence why we bring in all this evidence, then
19 again I have no problem with that, and I would -- I would withdraw
20 whatever observations I had made.
21 If, on the other hand, however, it is the Trial Chamber's position
22 that answers to leading questions are of little evidentiary value, there I
23 think, if that is the answer, then of course I think that my client has
24 been prejudiced and I was unaware that that is the rule and that is not
25 the rule.
1 So that's why I ask for this -- I made this oral submission, and
2 that's why I didn't bother to do a written submission. So we all spend
3 alight of time. And that's why I've asked for clarification early on. So
4 it wasn't meant to be offending anybody, but my job is to be due diligent,
5 sir, due diligent.
6 JUDGE TRECHSEL: Just to be clear on this, did you get the
7 clarification and is it satisfactory or do you have more questions open to
9 MR. KARNAVAS: I believe I have -- I believe now -- I'm -- I feel
10 like I understand. What you're saying is if a compound question is being
11 asked and -- then you really can't trust -- you as the trier of fact can't
12 trust the answer and that's an absolute certainty. I think we can all
13 agree on that.
14 JUDGE TRECHSEL: In my view we are in full agreement.
15 MR. KARNAVAS: I think we are.
16 JUDGE TRECHSEL: And I think we always were, but there was --
17 perhaps I have expressed myself in a misleading way or have not insisted.
18 I've tried to be brief, too, so maybe I'm a bit too brief sometimes.
19 MR. KARNAVAS: That's why I was -- I was trying to be helpful,
20 Your Honour, last Wednesday, and when I didn't receive a response I
21 thought, well, silence could be acquiescence. That's -- so there was
22 no -- there was no intent to offend. That's not my purpose here, because
23 at the end of the day my client's life rests in your hands.
24 JUDGE TRECHSEL: I take that.
25 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. We've just spent 30
1 minutes dealing with procedural matters. I've listened to a -- with a
2 great deal of interest to what has been said by Mr. Karnavas and by my
3 fellow Judge. It seems to me, but I did not believe that such a matter
4 would cause such a stir, it seemed to me that during the last hearing --
5 just before my fellow Judge made some submissions about this matter, it
6 seems to me that I said myself that an accused or a Defence counsel may
7 ask a leading question. I said that before, before, and you can check it
8 by reading the transcript. I stated that this was an allowed practice,
9 and that of course the Judges would assess the answer given to the leading
10 question. So the matter had been resolved already at that point. And I
11 had the feeling that my fellow Judge was making a side comment on a matter
12 that was not related to the direct examination but to something completely
13 different, something related to Rule 90(H)(iii) where it is stated that
14 the Trial Chamber may allow questions related to other matters. And I
15 believe that the question put by Mr. Praljak was a question allowed by
16 Rule 90(H)(iii). And may I add that the Trial Chamber is allowed to
17 refuse such questions that are asked. But the Trial Chamber was extremely
18 fixable and allowed Mr. Praljak to put his question to the witness and the
19 debate was not on whether the question was a leading question or not.
20 That's what we can say about the matter, and we are going to have
21 the witness brought in now.
22 [The witness entered court]
23 WITNESS: GRANT FINLAYSON
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Good afternoon, sir. Before
25 asking you to take the solemn declaration, please give us your first name,
1 last name, and date of birth.
2 THE WITNESS: My name is Grant Finlayson, date of birth, 24th of
3 the 6th, 1958.
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] What is your nationality?
5 THE WITNESS: New Zealand.
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Do you have an occupation and,
7 if so, what is that occupation?
8 THE WITNESS: My occupation is a marine technical consultant.
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Have you already
10 testified before an International Tribunal on the events that took place
11 in the former Yugoslavia or is it the first time you're testifying?
12 THE WITNESS: This is the first time.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] May I ask you to read the solemn
15 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will speak the truth, the
16 whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you very much. You may
18 sit down.
19 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Let me give you some information
21 about the way this testimony is going to be organised throughout the week.
22 As you know, you will testify today until Thursday. You are a Prosecution
23 witness. You will first answer questions put to you by the Prosecution.
24 The representatives of the Prosecution are sitting on your right. You've
25 probably met them this morning or during the weekend. Following this
1 stage of the testimony during which the Prosecution will put a number of
2 documents to you, you will then have to answer questions put to you by the
3 Defence counsel, who are on your left. You can see that are many of them.
4 They are here to represent each one of them the interests of one accused.
5 At some point some of the accused also might have some questions to put to
7 You've told us that this is the first time you've testified before
8 an international tribunal, so you might be a bit unsettled by some of the
9 questions put to you. You will soon realise that the questions put to you
10 by the Prosecution are questions that are not leading, that are as neutral
11 as possible, and the questions put to you by the Defence counsel or by the
12 accused themselves might be leading in their nature.
13 The four Judges who are sitting before you may, as per the rule,
14 ask any -- at any moment questions to you, but we have recently decided to
15 wait for the parties to have completed their examination before putting
16 questions to the witnesses. Of course we might decide to intervene if we
17 deem it absolutely necessary.
18 Please try when answering the questions put to you to be as
19 concise and as clear as possible, because what's important here is the
20 answers you provide to the questions put to you, and that's why you have
21 before you this screen where you can see the transcript of the words
22 uttered by each and every one of us here.
23 If at some point you do not understand one of the questions put to
24 you, do not hesitate the one putting the question to repeat it. Every one
25 hour and a half we'll have a break for technical purposes, but also to
1 allow you to take a rest, because you will soon realise that to answer
2 questions for hours on end is something that is quite tiring.
3 If at any time you feel unwell, do not hesitate to tell us, and I
4 will then decide to take a break. If at any moment you feel that you need
5 to address the Chamber, you may do so.
6 These are just a few words about the way we are going to proceed.
7 I'm now going to give the floor to the Prosecution, and the Prosecution
8 will now start with the examination-in-chief.
9 Let me remind the representatives of the Office of the Prosecution
10 that they have to ask non-leading questions.
11 MR. BOS: Thank you, Your Honours. Good afternoon, Your Honours,
12 and everyone else in the courtroom.
13 Examination by Mr. Bos:
14 Q. Good afternoon, Mr. Finlayson.
15 A. Afternoon.
16 Q. Mr. Finlayson could I ask you first some questions on your
17 background. Could you tell the Court what has been your educational
19 A. My educational background was I was at a secondary school in New
20 Zealand, obviously, until the year of 1990 -- 1974, and I went to what we
21 term as a fifth form level at high school. I completed my university
22 entrance after I joined the royal New Zealand navy at the age of 16, and
23 that's as far as my education goes.
24 Q. So you said 1975 you joined the Royal New Zealand Navy. How long
25 did you serve the royal New Zealand navy?
1 A. I served in the navy for 20 years.
2 Q. And what -- can you briefly tell us what you did in those 20
4 A. I joined the -- when I joined the navy I joined as an
5 apprentice -- apprentice control electrical artificer [phoen] they
6 referred it to. That's -- I went up through the ranks up to what is
7 termed chief petty officer, which would be equivalent to a sergeant in the
8 army. I then commissioned. I eventually left the royal New Zealand navy
9 as a lieutenant commander, weapons engineering officer.
10 Q. And that -- so -- and that was in 1970 -- in 1995 that you were --
11 A. 1995.
12 Q. -- that you were commander -- yeah. Is it true that during this
13 period that you served as an UNMO officer in Bosnia-Herzegovina from March
14 1993 until March 1994?
15 A. That's correct.
16 Q. And before serving did you get any specific training as to this
18 A. The training -- I received quite thorough training in New Zealand,
19 and in fact I received two lots of training initially, and I can't
20 remember the exact times at this stage, but I was told that I'd be going
21 to Bosnia, in fact probably -- it must have been around October the year
22 before I eventually went. We did -- I think it was around a week's
23 training. Pretty comprehensive regards how demilitarised zones work and
24 how UNMOs generally go about their duties. We had obviously first aid,
25 weapons recognition, language, and first aid, anything you'd maybe relate
1 with the requirements.
2 At the end of that training it was -- I assumed -- I was told --
3 in fact I wasn't pulling at that time and it wasn't until six months later
4 that I was eventually posted to UNPROFOR to replace my predecessor from
5 the Royal New Zealand Navy, Commander Reace. At that time, I underwent I
6 think about another three or four days' training, and that was in New
8 Q. And is it correct that around March 1993 you then travelled to the
9 former Yugoslavia?
10 A. That's -- that's correct.
11 Q. And is it correct that you would travel to Zagreb and that you had
12 some further training there? Is that correct?
13 A. Yes, we did. We -- on arrival in Zagreb, we underwent - I think
14 it was again three days - training in the UNMO headquarters in the Zagreb
15 headquarters there. Again, repeating mainly first aid and some driving
16 techniques and a few other essential skills that they thought would be
18 MR. BOS: Your Honours, I see counsel --
19 MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I was waiting for my
20 colleague to go back to that, but it's obviously not been corrected. When
21 the witness was introducing himself, the oral interpretation we received
22 was that the witness's occupation was that of a technical consultant with
23 the marines' corps, brings as a branch, a military branch, and now we've
24 seen all these questions regarding geography, and it appears to be no mere
25 coincidence. That's at least what it seems. So if my learned friend
1 could please ask a question about the witness's present profession so we
2 don't have to go back to that during our cross-examination, because this
3 is so patently wrong.
4 What I talked about was at page 20, line 4. That's what my
5 objection concerns. It was a matter of oral interpretation more so than a
6 matter of the actual transcript, I would say.
7 MR. BOS:
8 Q. Mr. Finlayson, you've heard what counsel said. You have any
9 comments to made on this?
10 A. I think I understood. He misunderstood my occupation. My
11 occupation at this time is not with the marines. It is a marine technical
12 consultant. What I do is, I consult. It's probably -- it needs further
13 explanation perhaps. I consult to the likes of ship owners or insurance
14 companies on matters -- technical matters regarding vessels, ships, and
15 aquacultural farms and structures.
16 Q. Thank you, Mr. Finlayson. I think that clarifies the point
18 Now, is it correct that you then travelled to -- to -- that you
19 were stationed in Medjugorje, Bosnia-Herzegovina at the UNMO BiH south
20 office in March 1993?
21 A. That is correct.
22 Q. Witness, can you describe what you saw as the role of the UNMO in
23 the former Yugoslavia?
24 A. To be perfectly honest, I don't believe that role was clearly
25 defined at the time. Throughout my training both in New Zealand and even
1 in Zagreb, a clear terms of reference was never given.
2 As most people will be aware, a military observer normally
3 observes peace in a demilitarised zone, or certainly that was my
4 understanding of it. We didn't have peace in Bosnia. We didn't have a
5 demilitarised zone. So the -- so the clarity of our role was really
6 non-existent. We, however, established ourselves, and I think it was
7 throughout the former Yugoslavia, as a source of -- I think the main roles
8 that we had or that were agreed was that we provided eyes for the
9 international community. We provided feedback on what was actually
10 happening within the former Yugoslavia. We in a lot -- we provided a
11 means of communication between the -- between the parties. We gave
12 assistance with the likes of UNHCR for -- for assisting in the
13 facilitating of convoys for -- of aid to the civil population. We -- we
14 also attended to things like prisoner exchanges, body exchanges, and other
15 such like activities. That would be the main -- main roles.
16 Q. Witness, I would like to now ask you to look at an exhibit, and
17 you will be provided with a bundle of exhibits that we will go through
18 today and maybe a part of tomorrow, and I would like you to look at
19 Exhibit 00487.
20 Now, Witness, this a document from the chief military observer,
21 and the subject is entitled: "Concept for the deployment of UNMO in the
22 Bosnia-Herzegovina command."
23 Now, I would like to draw your attention first to paragraph 5
24 where it talks about UNPROFOR -- UNPROFOR's task under this mandate.
25 Let me first ask you, in the area that you operated in the -- in
1 the south Bosnia-Herzegovina, was there an UNPROFOR battalion also
3 A. Yes, there was. The Spanish Battalion was also in Medjugorje and
4 later established a secondary base in Jablanica.
5 Q. Now, could I draw your attention to paragraph 6 of this -- of this
6 document, and I'll read it out for you. It says the following: "UNMO
7 teams will be attached under operational control of each battalion. They
8 are best used in a mobile negotiating, reporting and reconnaissance role.
9 They may be based in one location, for example, with the battalion
10 headquarters, or in a number of locations within the battalion area if the
11 situation so dictates."
12 Can I ask you to comment on what's been said here as far as the
13 relationship between UNMO and an UNPROFOR battalion? So I assume in this
14 case SpaBat. How would you comment on this paragraph?
15 A. Firstly we weren't -- we weren't under the operational control of
16 the battalions when we first joined -- or when I first joined the UNMO
17 organisation. Having said that, we were very closely in communication.
18 We weren't sited within the battalion although that changed during my time
19 in Bosnia. We were all UNMO headquarters, sector headquarters were
20 collocated with the battalions.
21 Q. Now, if you say that you -- that you weren't on the operation --
22 that you were not on the -- under the operational control of the
23 battalion, does that mean that the UNMO acted completely independently?
24 A. I think to say it operated completely independently would be
25 incorrect. However, it had its own command structure. However, the
1 communication between the battalion and the UNMOs was such that there
2 was -- cooperation would be probably a better word to be used.
3 Q. Okay. Could I ask you now to direct your attention to paragraph 9
4 of this document, which is on the next page of this document. And I'll
5 read it out again. It says: "Nature of task. The UNMOs will perform the
6 following nature of tasks:
7 "Patrolling in the area of responsibility.
8 "Liaison with concerned parties.
9 "Negotiation with authorities as required.
10 "Inevitable/ad hoc humanitarian tasks."
11 Would this encompass what you've just told us as well?
12 A. I believe that aligns with what I previously listed.
13 Q. Let's now talk about the organisational structure of the UNMO. Is
14 it correct, Mr. Finlayson, that over the weekend I asked you to draw up a
15 diagram of the organisational structure of the -- of the United Nations
16 military observers?
17 A. Yes, you did.
18 MR. BOS: Could I ask the usher to happened over the following
19 piece of document to the witness, and if we can put this on the overhead
20 projector, please. And maybe we could first get an IC number for this
21 document. Can I ask the registry to assign an IC number to this document.
22 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Registrar, please.
23 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honour, this document will become IC 536.
24 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Sir, please write your name on
25 this document and today's date, please. This is to authenticate the
2 MR. BOS:
3 Q. Now, Mr. Finlayson, I will adjust asking maybe if you can explain
4 what you've written down here.
5 A. Well, essentially I just said that -- that the UNMOs had had their
6 own command structure. This was essentially it as I recall it. I was a
7 bit sketchy on dates when I -- when I put this together, but on around the
8 time of -- of June 1993, the structure was, there was an UNMO headquarters
9 in -- in Zagreb, and that was the overall command, and they were in --
10 they were in the UNPROFOR headquarters and reported -- they reported to
11 the UNPROFOR HQ.
12 Under that was a secondary headquarters for Bosnia, and that was
13 located in Kiseljak. And directly below UNMO BH command were the
14 individual sectors, and as I recall there was a sector -- a separate
15 sector in Sarajevo. What have I got here? Sector north. UNMO BH South,
16 which is our own sector. UNMO central, and another one in Bihac, in the
17 Bihac pocket. There were, I believe, UNMOs in -- well, there were UNMOs
18 in Pale, Zepa, and Gorazde.
19 In BH South we had five teams. They're shown here with their
20 call-signs above them. Mike X-ray 1 is in Nevesinje. Mike X-ray 3 was in
21 Bileca. MX4 was in Jablanica. Mike X-ray 5 was in East Mostar. And I
22 think later on Mike X-ray 6 came along in West Mostar. We think that was
23 around September.
24 During -- later on during my time as -- as SMO, which was after
25 September, we set up teams in Tomislavgrad, Posusje, and Siroki Brijeg.
1 Q. Let me ask you a couple of questions clarification of this
2 diagram. First of all, I notice that there -- that you haven't marked
3 MX2. What is the reason for that?
4 A. MX2, as I understand it there were three teams on the Serbian side
5 of the confrontation line. However, that was before I -- I joined the
6 team, and that was disbanded. I think that was in Labunja [phoen], but I
7 may have the name incorrect there so, I think ...
8 Q. Is it correct that MX1, MX2, and MX3 were all on the Serbian side?
9 A. Yes, that's correct.
10 Q. And let me just ask another -- questions about who was the top man
11 in your -- in UNMO, the chief military observer?
12 A. The chief military observer for most of the time I was there was
13 Bo Pellnas, General Bo Pellnas from Sweden.
14 Q. So he was stationed in Zagreb?
15 A. He was stationed in Zagreb, yeah.
16 Q. And where would you have fitted in, in this diagram, first upon
17 your arrival in June -- or in May 1990 -- no, March 1993?
18 A. In -- sorry. When I arrived, I worked from what is shown there as
19 MX, which was an UNMO headquarters, which was located in Medjugorje.
20 Q. And -- and what was your function in June 1993?
21 A. Sorry, you've gone to June 1993?
22 Q. Yeah, which is the date, I think --
23 A. Okay.
24 Q. -- of this diagram.
25 A. During June 1993 I was a team leader, and in fact I set up the
1 Mike X-ray 5 team in East Mostar.
2 Q. And just one more question. Upon your arrival, who was the person
3 in charge of UNMO BH South?
4 A. At the time of my arrival it was a Major Paul Ronksley from
6 Q. And what was his title?
7 A. Sorry. He was the senior military observer, BH South.
8 Q. And is it correct that later on in September 1993 when you
9 returned to Mostar that you -- which function did you then form in this
11 A. I took over from -- in fact, sorry, I didn't take over from Paul
12 Ronksley. There had been one in between. But I took over as the senior
13 military observer, BH South.
14 Q. Thank you. Could I ask you now something to say about the way the
15 reporting system functioned within the UNMO? And, well, maybe, if you
16 still need the diagram --
17 A. No, I think we can get away without it. Okay. The -- if you
18 recall, the lowest level of that -- of that diagram were the teams out in
19 the various locations around the sector. Effectively they reported in to
20 the headquarters for the sector, i.e., all the MX1, 3, 4, 5, 6 reported in
21 at the end of each day to Mike X-ray, which was the sector headquarters.
22 They did that essentially by HF or UHF coms.
23 Q. Can you explain what that is, H --
24 A. Well, high frequency or ultra high frequency coms. Just a radio,
25 a click-click radio. Very unreliable, very -- sorry, not -- yeah,
1 unreliable and tricky at times. Often the link wasn't perfect, so we
2 relied on information being relayed by other -- other parties at times.
3 That information would be compiled at the headquarters. That -- the BH
4 South headquarters would then put together a report at the end of each day
5 of their activities and any activity that had taken place.
6 In the case of BH South, that was forwarded to the UNMO BH
7 command. That was generally done via the SpaBat or the Spanish
8 Battalion's communications centre. It then went to BH command. BH
9 command then coordinated all the reports from the other sectors into a BH
10 command report which then went to UNMO Zagreb.
11 Q. When you say that it was communicated at the -- at the Spanish
12 Battalion communications centre, how was it communicated?
13 A. Again, that was via -- their communications centre, I would guess
14 it was probably -- I am assuming it would be by HF, high frequency
15 equipment which they would have had which would not have been as
16 vulnerable to the terrain, interruptions from the terrain, and they would
17 have had the equipment to receive that.
18 Q. Now let's move back to March 1993, when you arrived in Medjugorje.
19 Could you tell us, what was the situation like at the time in the area,
20 and what did you do in the first two months?
21 A. March -- when I first arrived there the -- essentially the BiH and
22 the HVO were combined in their efforts against the Serbs, Bosnian Serbs.
23 The activity at that time was fairly low key. It was obvious that -- that
24 there had been heavy fighting obviously over the previous year, but at
25 that time it was -- it was fairly quiet. It became apparent that there
1 was disharmony between the -- the two parts of -- of the force, i.e.,
2 the -- the HVO and the BiH. So -- but that was tense at those periods and
3 the activity was -- was low.
4 Q. Okay. Now, you've said that -- it was apparent that there was
5 disharmony between the HVO and the BiH. What had caused this disharmony,
6 as you -- as you've put it?
7 A. I think -- I don't think I'm really in a position to say what --
8 what caused it, but I became aware of it through discussions with --
9 with -- with the various lower key headquarters. I think I made an
10 observation, and possibly it wasn't well-founded, but I think at the time
11 it there was the Vance-Owen Plan kicking around, and that seemed to --
12 seemed to be maybe fuelling a bit of the distrust and -- between the
13 various parties, and I think that eventually led from memory to the HVO in
14 our area, asking the BiH -- their BiH partners to lay down their weapons
15 or give up their weapons.
16 Q. Let me just ask you some clarification on what you just said. You
17 said that the Vance-Owen Peace Plan fuelled distrust. Can you explain a
18 bit better to the Judges what you meant -- what you mean by that? Why did
19 it fuel distrust between the HVO and the BiH?
20 A. I will -- I will do so, but I also just caution that at that point
21 in time I was fairly new in the -- in the area and new to the situation,
22 and I would say that I also hadn't come totally to terms with it at that
23 point in time, but the -- the Vance-Owen Plan, as I recall, allocated
24 certain areas. The governance, as I saw it, of certain areas to either
25 Muslim parties or -- or Croatian, or Bosnia Croatian parties, and that I
1 guess within the Balkans there was a history there, and there was
2 essentially a mistrust. So that's -- I think that's where my comments
3 came -- came from on that -- that particular point. In other words,
4 the -- the people were not -- if you were in the wrong -- the wrong area,
5 you weren't really too keen on the plan.
6 Q. In your uptake, was the Vance-Owen Peace Plan publicly known in
7 the area?
8 A. It appeared to be known, and I think there were -- from memory, I
9 believe there were a couple of versions of it, and as it grew. That's my
10 memory, and it may be incorrect.
11 Q. Did there come a time in April that -- that the chief military
12 observer visited your area?
13 A. Yes. I believe it was April. I'd have to refer to my diary for
14 exact points, but at -- at a point in -- yes, it would have been late
15 April. Mid to late April the chief military observer was Bo Pellnas, and
16 he came to BH South. I being a new UNMO -- and for your information,
17 UNMOs, regardless of their rank, all go in as an UNMO. The rank goes out
18 the door. But as an UNMO, I had the prestigious job of driving that day,
19 so I was told to go and collect the -- the general from the airport. So
20 that was my role.
21 Q. Do you know why -- why did he come to the area?
22 A. At the time when I went to get him I knew nothing, and really my
23 knowledge of what was happening grew during the day. The -- we
24 effectively left Split where we airlifted him and proceeded directly, I
25 think, directly to the Mostar hospital on the west side where he had a
1 meeting with the parties.
2 Q. Could I ask you to look at Exhibit 2054, please. Can you explain
3 to the Court what document -- what kind of document this is?
4 A. This is reporting on the CM activities in Mostar in 1993, 18th
5 of -- 18th to 22nd of April.
6 Q. Now, if -- if we read the document it starts off with 18 April
7 1993, and I'll just read out the first part of this paragraph. "At 2.30 a
8 meeting was held in Mostar together with ECMM and the representatives for
9 the Muslim and Croat communities. From the Muslim side, Vice-President
10 Ganic was the head of mission --"
11 MR. MURPHY: Your Honour, before Mr. Bos reads too much of this
12 out, may we please established whether the witness attended the meeting
13 and has any knowledge of what happened?
14 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Bos.
15 MR. BOS:
16 Q. Witness, did you attend the meeting that Bo Pellnas was --
17 A. I did not attend the meeting. I was in attendance directly
18 outside the hospital.
19 Q. So what did you do at the time that Mr. Pellnas was at this
21 A. At that stage I -- I simply remained in the vehicle and -- which
22 was immediately outside the venue.
23 Q. Now, this document refers to a couple of people who attended this
24 meeting. Did you see those persons yourself? Let me first ask.
25 Mr. Ganic. Did you see Mr. Ganic?
1 A. I believe I entered in my diary that Mr. Ganic was there, but I --
2 I personally can't recall him at this stage.
3 Q. What about General Pasalic?
4 A. Yes, I recall being there.
5 Q. And Mr. -- Vice-president Prlic. Did you see him?
6 A. I've got a slight recollection, but -- yes, slight.
7 Q. And -- and what about General Petkovic?
8 A. General Petkovic definitely.
9 Q. Was this the first time that you --
10 MR. KARNAVAS: Your Honour. Your Honour, we could save a lot of
11 time. Just because he can identify certain persons that were at the
12 meeting does not qualify the gentleman to comment about the contents of
13 the meeting or the contents of the meeting as described in this particular
14 document, and I think it would be a waste of time to simply try to get the
15 gentleman to simply acknowledge what happened at the meeting when he
16 himself wasn't there, and in all fairness to the gentleman, it's putting
17 him on the spot and having him try to recollect what he might have
18 remembered others told him of a meeting that he didn't attend but, rather,
19 was sitting in his car, you know, chilling out, as it were. I think it's
20 guess to just move on.
21 MR. BOS: Your Honours, I'm not going to ask him, you know, what
22 happened in the meeting and then what he knows what was discussed in the
23 meeting, and we will have another witness to do that, but I do think I can
24 ask some questions, and my questions on this document will be limited to
25 what he can actually testify to. And I'm not going to go through this
1 whole document page by page, but there are a couple of things which I
2 think I can ask him as far as his presence at the meeting of --
3 MR. KARNAVAS: Your Honour, he can ask the questions of the
4 gentlemen without the document. That's my whole point. And if they're
5 going to bring in another witness to question that witness about the
6 document or meetings in a document I think we can hear that testimony
7 then. Let's just get the testimony of what this gentleman knows and
8 observed at the time.
9 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So we've reached the following
10 situation: There is a meeting, and the witness is sitting in a vehicle
11 outside. After the meeting, will General Pellnas tell him what happened
12 at the meeting? If we -- he has seen a number of people; has he seen
13 Mr. Prlic? Let's try and again some time, because Defence counsel will
14 object, and we shall lose precious time, in particular if another witness
15 is going to come and testify about these matters. Unless there is
16 something else you would like to say or unless this is a really usually
18 MR. BOS: Your Honours, I'll -- I understood what you said, and
19 I'll move on very quickly through this.
20 Q. Witness, you said that you -- that you saw Mr. Petkovic there.
21 A. Yes. I knew Mr. Petkovic was there, and --
22 Q. Was this the first time that you saw Mr. Petkovic?
23 A. It was.
24 MS. NOZICA: [Interpretation] Your Honour, with your permission, I
25 seem to feel that the Prosecutor's insisting -- by-passing your
1 instructions and all these matters and the Prosecutor said, Well, we have
2 a list of witnesses and a certain amount of time when somebody who
3 attended the meeting and who compiled this report will come into the
4 courtroom as a witness, and I think the Prosecutor has envisaged that for
5 June or July. So do we really need to insist upon these matters?
6 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] We didn't hear anything. The
7 interpreters could not be heard. It's working now.
8 I'm turning to the Prosecution. You asked the witness, "Have you
9 seen Mr. Petkovic?" I think before that you should ask him whether he
10 knew Mr. Petkovic, because you could have told him, "Did you see
11 Mr. Scott?" I don't know. Mr. Petkovic is just there?
12 MR. BOS: Your Honours, I did ask him whether he saw Mr. Petkovic
13 there and he did agree that he saw Mr. Petkovic there. So my next
14 question was, was that the first time you saw Mr. Petkovic? And he just
15 affirmed that.
16 Q. And so, Mr. Finlayson, again just to follow up on that, did you
17 have any dealings with Mr. Petkovic later on? Maybe, you know, not
18 directly at that day but later on in your duties as an UNMO officer.
19 A. Yes. I -- I did on several occasion. During that day we were
20 introduced, or certainly Mr. Petkovic and all the players at the time were
21 identified to us. Essentially it was -- the other person with me was the
22 SMO, who was Paul Ronksley, and he was making the effort to explain what
23 was happening and who was attending.
24 Q. Did Mr. Pellnas after -- after the meeting, told you about what
25 the meeting was about and what resulted at this meeting?
1 A. Yes. The meeting ended up -- I mean, we witnessed I think it was
2 Mr. Stojic storming out, and then of course the meeting had ended up in
3 disarray, and from memory -- so the -- it was quickly accounted to us
4 that, and I think Mr. Petkovic had at that particular meeting had refused
5 to talk to Mr. Pasalic because he was of the wrong rank --
6 MR. MURPHY: Sorry,, I'm really -- I'm sorry to interrupt. I
7 really don't see what probative value this has at all. They've got other
8 witnesses, apparently, who were present during this meeting. I think
9 we've all -- in fact had already testify -- one witness who was present
10 during the meeting on another occasion. And I object to this. This is of
11 no probative value that one can measure whatsoever.
12 MR. BOS: Your Honour, the witness says, I witnessed -- I think it
13 was Mr. Stojic [Realtime transcript read in error "Petkovic"] storming
14 out. He himself says he witnessed it, so this is clearly probative --
15 probative evidence. I -- I really don't understand the objection. He
16 says he witnessed it himself.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Ask him to clarify in that case.
18 He's in the car. Perhaps he's listening to the radio or reading a
19 newspaper. Did he know Mr. Stojic? I don't know anything. This is my
20 position. I hold a meeting. There's somebody in a car, and there's
21 somebody storming out of the meeting. Seemingly this was Mr. Stojic. Did
22 he know him before that? Did he get to know him after that? What is the
24 MR. BOS: [Previous translation continues] ... I was about to
25 clarify that when I was interrupted, Your Honours.
1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Ms. Alaburic.
2 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I apologise. I'd like
3 to correct an error in the transcript. Page 39, line 9, the question by
4 Mr. Scott did not refer do my client, Petkovic, as has been recorded, but
5 it is the second accused. So could that name be put right, please.
6 Not Mr. Scott; Mr. Bos. I apologise to both of them.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Well, at any rate the time has
8 come for a break. It's a quarter to 4.00. Let's have a 20-minute break.
9 We shall resume in 20 minutes' time.
10 --- Recess taken at 3.45 p.m.
11 --- On resuming at 4.06 p.m.
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The hearing is resumed.
13 Mr. Bos, just a minor observation. Regarding the document you
14 want to submit to the witness, 2054, it has been admitted already through
15 another witness. If you want to put questions on this document, well,
16 this witness has to bring some added value with regard to the document,
17 otherwise we're wasting time. The document has already been admitted.
18 MR. BOS: Your Honours, some of the conclusions of this document
19 has a direct effect on the work of this witness in the days that followed
20 the meeting we've discussed just before the break, and that's why this
21 document is important for this witness.
22 Q. Mr. Finlayson, that's -- was going to be my next question. Is the
23 meeting that Mr. Pellnas participated there on the 18th of April resulted
24 in some specific tasks in which you got involved in the days that
25 followed, and what were those tasks?
1 A. This -- this meeting -- on conclusion of this meeting it was
2 agreed that a joint commission meeting was established in Mostar, and in
3 fact I think it -- if I recall, it happened that evening.
4 Q. And were you involved in setting up this joint commission meeting?
5 A. That particular -- the first meeting I -- I still was -- I
6 attended the meeting, but I was not involved in setting that up. Once at
7 a later stage the joint commission was set up, and I think that was maybe
8 a day or even two later. Without referring to my diaries, I'm not too
9 sure. I was tasked to actually take control of the joint operations
10 centre for the UNMOs by General Pellnas.
11 Q. And what -- can you give a bit more detail what -- what you mean
12 by, "take control of the joint operations centre"? What did that entail?
13 A. Yeah. I guess "take control" is really -- was to chair the
14 meetings and at that stage the idea of the joint operations centre at that
15 point was to monitor what was happening in the region. Effectively the --
16 because of the -- the break-up of the teams, there were -- there were
17 rumours arife around what was happening, from one region to one group of
18 people and the other. One side would have -- have obvious concerns of
19 their people in one area, while the opposite side would -- had problems
20 with their people in another area. So the idea of the operations centre
21 was to send out, investigate these reports with members of UNPROFOR and
22 members of both the BiH and the HVO and that each party investigated.
23 Q. Did you participate in any of these joint patrols that you're
24 referring to?
25 A. Affirmative. I did. One of them was -- can I -- can I refer to
1 my diary, or is it -- I'm just -- some of the names escape me, but I had
2 one up north to a Muslim-controlled area where there were fears of a group
3 of Bosnian Croatian civilians living in that area. So that was one patrol
4 we did. And the other patrol was to a -- or to attempt to get to the area
5 of Sovici, I think.
6 Q. Let me just first. You've been referring to a diary. Let's
7 clarify this issue first. Is it correct -- what are you referring to when
8 you say, "Can I refer to my diary"? What diary are you referring to?
9 A. Yes. You have my diary I've given to you for your use. If I were
10 to give accurate information it would just be handy to refer to it to make
11 sure I've got the names of the cities correct or the town correct.
12 MR. BOS: Your Honours, this diary was disclosed on the 25th of
13 April, also to the Defence, and I -- the witness -- the Prosecution
14 doesn't intend to introduce this diary as an exhibit in these proceedings,
15 but if the witness wants to refer to the diary, I -- I think he can in
16 order to -- to jog his memory on certain names and places.
17 MR. KARNAVAS: If I may -- if I may, Your Honour. I would suggest
18 that first a foundation be laid, something a little bit more than just
19 asking one question. And assuming that the diary's only being looked at,
20 once a foundation has been made and I invite the gentleman to lay in a
21 proper foundation how it was kept why it was kept there are direct quotes
22 are they the essence of what was said so we don't have what -- so we don't
23 have problems as we did with one particular witness.
24 Once a foundation is laid, then if it is for the purpose of
25 refreshing the gentleman's memory he can refer to the diary whenever he
1 needs to provided it's noted on the record he's referring to the diary to
2 refresh the memory. That would be my position.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] One minute, Mr. Kovacic.
4 I would like to tell the Defence counsel that they should not sort
5 of exaggerate or fall in the trap of procedural matters, which makes it so
6 that everybody wastes time. In 1993, so over 14 years ago, the witness
7 took part in matters. Fourteen years he's come here to testify to
8 documents. Of course he can't remember anything or he may remember
9 specific things, some of them.
10 So, Witness, you met the OTP before you came. When did you arrive
11 in The Hague?
12 THE WITNESS: Saturday morning, Your Honour.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] And how many hours did you spend
14 together with the OTP before your testimony today?
15 THE WITNESS: I would guess probably around 10.
16 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] So during these 10 or so hours,
17 did you look at the diary which you mention every time, every minute?
18 THE WITNESS: I think -- I think just where I -- I stumbled a
19 little bit there was the names of the cities, and even as we -- or the
20 towns, and even as we're talking they've come to my mind, and I guess if
21 you're happy with that, I'm happy to proceed without the diary. But every
22 so often it's -- I guess it's like a security blanket. It's nice to look
23 down and check to see you're saying the right thing.
24 MR. MURPHY: Your Honour, can I just say this as I think I have in
25 the case of other witnesses, that giving evidence should be not a test
1 of -- always of memory so much as accuracy, and if the witness is assisted
2 by looking at his diary, I certainly would have no objection to that. In
3 the interest of transparency, let me say when it comes to
4 cross-examination, he's going to be reading quite a bit of during my
5 questioning, so I have no objection to him looking at it now if it would
7 MR. KOVACIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, it is true that the
8 OTP disclosed the diary to the Defence in late April, the 25th or the
9 26th, I believe. We did have a chance to look at it. Unfortunately,
10 however, we didn't have a chance to familiarise our client with the diary
11 since we did not obtain a translation of the diary, and we simply didn't
12 have the time to get it translated ourselves. Therefore, we were
13 considerably at a disadvantage in terms of retrieving further documents
14 from our clients. So this diary, especially if anyone is intending to
15 tender it, must be qualified by saying this: The clients were not served
16 this document in a language they can understand, although I certainly
17 think that this diary belongs to the group of documents that must be
18 translated and served to the accused in -- in a language that they can
20 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Murphy, as usual, has had an
21 excellent suggestion. He believes that the diary could be useful to the
22 witness for him to refresh his memory as to dates and names, not as to the
23 substance that is going to be cross-examined. But we're going to
24 deliberate on this to see whether we authorise the use of the diary.
25 [Trial Chamber confers]
1 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] After deliberations, the Trial
2 Chamber sees no position, no -- to the diary being used to guide the
3 witness for him to provide details, but the Trial Chamber requests from
4 the Prosecution that they ask the witness how he wrote this diary, why he
5 did so, why was he keeping a diary, what did he mention in it, in order to
6 lay the foundation of the existence of this diary.
7 MR. BOS:
8 Q. Mr. Finlayson, I think you've heard what the -- what the
9 Presiding Judge just said. Can you tell it us a little built more how you
10 kept this diary?
11 A. I'm actually starting to believe I should carry on without it,
12 but --
13 Q. Just answer the question.
14 A. I kept a -- I kept a diary. It was a personal diary. It was --
15 Q. But when did -- you noted down these -- your notes in this diary?
16 Was this --
17 A. You can hardly call it a diary. It just had some notes of key
18 points that occurred to me only, and it was -- basically at the end of
19 most days I just jotted down what I had done on those days. It contains
20 some personal opinions, but as I say, I was going to use it to get some
21 names, and they have come to mind. So maybe we should proceed without it
22 and see how I go.
23 Q. Do you have the diary here with you?
24 A. No. I --
25 Q. Do you have it in the witness room?
1 A. No, I haven't. I thought you had it as a piece of paper. So I'm
2 happy to proceed without it, I think. Let's get this show on the road,
4 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well. Get going.
5 MR. BOS:
6 Q. All right, we'll continue. But, Mr. Finlayson, if there comes a
7 time when your diary will become helpful, just please indicate this and
8 we'll -- we'll provide you with a copy of your diary maybe after the
10 Now, you -- you said that you couldn't find a name of a certain
11 village and that it now -- that it came back to your memory. What was the
12 name of that village?
13 A. Yeah. It was Ostrozac, which was the first one where the Croatian
14 families were believed to be under threat by the surrounding
15 Muslim-controlled -- controlling people.
16 Q. And were there any other joint patrols in which you
17 participated --
18 A. Yes, the one to Sovici and Doljani, Sovici.
19 Q. Could you give us a bit more information about this particular
20 joint patrol, Sovici or Doljani?
21 A. Doljani, yeah. Yeah, that was a patrol where we had to move our
22 way through the Muslim lines. That involved, in fact, moving quite
23 substantial fortifications in the way of concrete blocks. This was done
24 by utilising the Spanish Battalion's APC. We moved -- we moved through --
25 it took us probably an hour or two to get through, and then we made our
1 way to Doljani, and we then came to the opposition's front line, the HVO's
2 front line where in fact we got stopped and we were unable to proceed much
4 Q. What kind of -- of allegations were made as to what had happened
5 in Sovici, Doljani?
6 A. Again there was allegation -- sorry, there was belief that Muslim
7 people were being persecuted by -- or mistreated by -- by the controlling
8 Croatian forces in that area. So it was, to follow up, the day before we
9 looked for -- for beliefs that Croatians were getting harmed. This was to
10 follow up the belief that Muslims were being harmed.
11 Q. You said you were stopped at the -- at the opposition front line,
12 at the HVO's front line. Who stopped you there?
13 A. A group of soldiers. They -- I can't recall what they were
14 wearing, to be honest. None of them spoke the local language. My
15 Croatian interpreter was of no use. Luckily I had a Danish UNMO with me
16 who could speak German, which appeared to be the only language this group
17 of soldiers knew. And they were reasonably hostile in their attitude
18 towards us. They eventually let us return but certainly would not let us
19 proceed to Doljani.
20 Q. Now, this was a joint patrol, so I assume there was an HVO
21 representative in this patrol as well. Did the HVO representative
22 undertook any action to -- to let your patrol pass through this -- through
23 this check-point?
24 A. Yes, he did. I can't recall who it was, but it was general
25 practice that they did get out and talk. Whether it was HVO or armija, we
1 regularly had problems with it being ineffective. They weren't
2 recognised, or there was a game being played out. We never really knew.
3 But the thing was that they more often than not were -- didn't prove to be
4 a great asset.
5 Q. What did you conclude as to who these soldiers were who were
6 speaking German and not the Croatian language?
7 A. I think I can -- well, I did. I concluded they were probably a
8 group of mercenaries.
9 Q. And for which army would they have been serving?
10 A. They were -- they would have been serving for the HVO.
11 Q. Witness, I'd like to move on now to about the 9th of May, but just
12 before I do, can I ask you whether you remember any particular incident on
13 a joint patrol that involved Colonel Pasalic just prior to the 9th of May?
14 A. Yes. It was a -- it was a joint patrol I wasn't on, but I
15 remember -- I recall that his -- the -- I can't remember the exact
16 details, but I believe -- no. I know his progress was stopped, and his
17 return to Mostar was -- was presented it the an HVO check-point up the
18 Neretva River on the northern side of Mostar.
19 Q. And on what day was this?
20 A. The 8th.
21 Q. What happened on the 9th of May?
22 A. On the 9th of May a -- a concerted attack on the Muslim parts of
23 the town of Mostar was -- was launched by the HVO.
24 Q. How did you learn about this attack?
25 A. Sorry, I can't recall how I learnt about it, but certainly we --
1 we got to know about it from some of our earlier patrols, I would guess,
2 but I can't recall how we learnt about that attack unfolding.
3 Q. And what did you do on that day when you learned about this?
4 A. On that day we were tasked by the SMO at the time, Paul Ronksley,
5 to head into Mostar to -- to find out what was going on. In doing so, our
6 progress, we -- we were stopped going into Mostar from the south end
7 through where we normally entered. So we then tried to enter, I guess,
8 from the western end, western side, and again we were prevented from going
9 in. And then eventually I myself found a small road which led us around
10 to the north end of the town, and we were able to establish a position
11 to -- to view what was happening. And also another team also managed to
12 get a little bit further in the south and establish an OP to the south of
13 the town.
14 Q. And at the position where you eventually got, did you notice
15 anything in the neighbourhood of that position?
16 A. There was a tank immediately adjacent to us. Effectively I would
17 guess that -- that there was two or three tanks, and from memory I think
18 at least one artillery piece, but I can't honestly sit here and recall
19 that accurately.
20 Q. You said there was a tank immediately adjacent. To which army did
21 that tank belong?
22 A. That was HVO.
23 Q. Witness, behind you I've set up a -- a map of Mostar and the
24 surrounding area, and could I ask you to mark the location where you
25 eventually got on the 9th of May and where you observed the situation on
1 the 9th in the town.
2 A. [Marks]
3 Q. Could you mark that dot, please, with a number A -- A.
4 A. [Marks]
5 Q. Now, you said that you also observed a tank very close to you.
6 Where -- could you mark the location of the tank, please?
7 A. [Marks]
8 Q. Could it mark it with a number B.
9 A. [Marks]
10 Q. And you've said that you also noted a few more tank. Can you mark
11 the locations of the other tanks that you observed that day?
12 A. [Marks]
13 Q. You will have to talk into the microphone.
14 A. I think the exact location of that C would be questionable at this
15 time, but I'd put a rating of about 70 per cent sure.
16 Q. And were -- these two tanks that you've just been marked now were
17 they on elevated positions, because the map doesn't really show, but would
18 that be a hill on which they are?
19 A. It's -- it's certainly a hill that surrounds. The city's in a
20 small valley, really. So there's hill from the back, and there's hills
21 from the Hum all around. So all the positions were pretty well elevated.
22 Q. Did you see these tanks shooting that day?
23 A. Yes, I did.
24 Q. And in what direction were they shooting?
25 A. Probably -- I'll use this. The tanks were essentially firing in
1 this -- this area here over into the side of the -- again, it's
2 probably -- the accuracy of where we were, they were landing basically
3 around that area.
4 Q. Now, you will have to describe for the record the area you just
5 indicated. Could you --
6 A. The area there is essentially the town immediately on the -- on
7 the western side of the Neretva River. It's the commercial centre of
8 Mostar, I think would -- it certainly gave the impression. It had large
9 shops and what looked like houses and banks, et cetera. They were
10 certainly hard to recognise after a year of war, but it certainly looked
11 to be the commercial area, and it was the area where, fair to say, the
12 Muslims -- the Muslim forces had congregated or were still in possession.
13 Q. What else did you observe that day?
14 A. I myself?
15 Q. Yes.
16 A. At this stage I really -- that was all I -- all I personally
17 observed was -- was the level of activity and giving the information about
18 what was happening in that -- in that area. The -- the OP at the south
19 end of town, they reported that they'd seen civilian being taken out of
20 the town. I, from memory, and I think I put in my statement I didn't see
21 anything, but I think we actually saw the buses but, of course, just going
22 up the hill, we got a glimpse of them, but from where we were they could
23 have been anything, whereas the team down the south could clearly see they
24 were civilians, and they could see that they were civilians being mustered
25 in the -- in the stadium, and the buses were going from the stadium down
1 this road here, I think, if I remember. So the other team was positioned
3 Q. Maybe could you please mark the position of the other team with a
4 number D, please. Mark it as a D.
5 A. [Marks].
6 Q. Just to go back to what -- to what you saw that day. You've said
7 that you saw the tanks and that they were shooting. Was there any other
8 weapon that -- was there any other shooting from other weapon --
9 A. I think there was. There were definitely mortars being used. I
10 can't remember what was being used up here, but I seem to remember there
11 was a gun up there. It think it may have been an anti-aircraft type
12 weapon, or something like that. Again the memory's gone. I'm sure there
13 was artillery being used at that point, too, and possibly a
14 rocket-propelled grenade, but that may have been later in the piece. I
15 have to be careful there.
16 Q. And was artillery being used by both armies by both the HVO and
17 the ABiH that day?
18 A. The heavy artillery, the armija had none. I think at that stage
19 they probably had -- I think we thought they -- well, we came to the
20 conclusion at that point in time they had seven mortars. Whereas -- so
21 they had no other weapons other than small arms and mortars at that point.
22 Q. How long did you stay for on that observation point on the 9th of
24 A. I think we -- we stayed until it -- it became dark.
25 MR. BOS: Your Honours, if I could get an IC number for this map
1 that was marked by the witness.
2 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, could you also put the
3 date, today's date, and sign the map.
4 Give us a number, Mr. Registrar.
5 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honour, this document will become IC 537.
6 MR. BOS:
7 Q. Witness, what did you do the next day, on the 10th of May?
8 A. I believe we tried to get back in to the positions that we'd held
9 the day -- the previous day but were unable to do -- to do that.
10 Q. And why were you unable to do so?
11 A. We were prevented by the HVO going through any -- through the
12 roadblocks they'd set up.
13 Q. So on the 10th of May there was no way of -- of getting into
15 A. There was no way of getting into Mostar.
16 Q. And what did you do on the 11th of May? Do you recall what you
17 did, what you did that day?
18 A. The exact day I would be unsure of, but I would think that it
19 would be the 11th that we investigated further the -- the fate of the
20 civilians. And we located them, and I can't recall who or how we located
21 them, but we -- we found out they were being held in the -- what we
22 referred to as the Helo factory down in the southern end of down there.
23 And we went down there and worked -- worked to gaining access to find out
24 what was -- what was happening to them.
25 Q. Were you able to enter the Helo factory?
1 A. We were, and --
2 Q. Straight away?
3 A. Not straight away, but nothing ever happened straight away in
4 Bosnia. I think from memory I noted that it wasn't relatively difficult
5 to actually gain access into that establishment, and once we got there we
6 were shown most -- most -- most things.
7 Q. Can you tell us what -- what you saw --
8 A. Yeah.
9 Q. -- that day?
10 A. Effectively there were a large number of civilians, and I -- again
11 I can't recall the figure, but I seem to remember it was around the 1.300
12 mark all up of what I would term civilians. They were mainly
13 predominantly women and children. They were being held in a -- there were
14 two of them being held, and from memory it was a sort of a dormitory, or
15 couple of dormitories, and there were two lots being held in gymnasiums.
16 The ones in the gymnasium were -- in one gymnasium it was -- it was
17 mainly -- it was only men, predominantly older men. There were some what
18 you would term fighting men in that area. The -- the other gymnasium, I
19 think from memory, was a group of people that we believed came from
20 villages -- outlying villages, and I think predominantly from the north.
21 And the women and children that we interviewed had come from Mostar
22 itself. They were all Muslim.
23 Q. Could I ask you to look at Exhibit 2293 in your bundle. Look at
24 the second page. This is a report from UNMO BiH south to UNMO
25 headquarters Zagreb. Do you recognise this report?
1 A. I do. I believe I wrote it.
2 Q. Now, is this a report of -- of what you saw that day at the
4 A. It was. It's a report, and it's nothing that I -- aren't happy
6 Q. Now, if I could just direct your attention to paragraph 2. It
7 reads: "The people spoken to had stated that they had been taken there
8 against their will. However, had been reassured by the HVO that it was
9 for their own safety." With whom did you actually speak that day?
10 A. We spoke with the women themselves. We tried to -- we were always
11 accompanied by HVO, which made the women very, very nervous. However, we
12 were able to establish a little bit of distance between us, and there were
13 a couple of younger women there that could speak very good English, and
14 they had informed us that they had been dragged out of their homes. I
15 can't recall exactly which night, but one of the preceding nights. And
16 they were there -- they were there against their will. They had nothing.
17 They were not able to take anything with them. They only had the clothes
18 they stood up in.
19 Q. If I can direct your attention to the next page under paragraph 5.
20 It talks about in total there was, "1.346 people, number supplied by
21 Pusic, another 300 expected tonight. All are Muslims." Is that the
22 figure you've been referring to as --
23 A. Yeah, and I guess that's where I remembered that figure from.
24 Q. Now, just to clarify on the name of Pusic, if we go back to
25 paragraph 1 there's a reference here to a person, the commander, Mile
1 Pusic. Is that the person who also provided you the numbers or is this a
2 different Pusic?
3 A. I believe it would have been Milo Pusic.
4 Q. If we move to paragraph 6, first sentence, it's -- and I'll read
5 it out: "The initial movement of people was ordered by Mr. Lasic. The
6 people had been taken against their will. Families had been deliberately
7 separated and people not allowed to gather their basic belongings before
8 their transportation." Now, who told you that it was Mr. Lasic?
9 A. I can't remember that. I would assume that it was Mr. Pusic, but
10 I can't recall. It would have been told by someone if I reported it,
11 someone of authority.
12 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [No interpretation]
13 MR. IBRISIMOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President. Thank
14 you, Mr. President. I think it would be a good thing to clarify paragraph
15 6. This is one person, Mile Pusic, and not a different man Pusic as the
16 Prosecutor mentioned a while ago.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Bos. Please have the
18 witness testify who is that person named Pusic.
19 MR. BOS: I asked that question, Your Honours, and the witness
20 responded that he believes it's Mile Pusic. That's all he can do. I
21 think I did clarify the whole issue, so I don't really see why -- why I
22 need to do it again.
23 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, who was this
24 Mile Pusic, according to you?
25 THE WITNESS: This was the only time I actually came across Milo
1 [sic] Pusic. I believe he was like a commandant of the establishment.
2 But to be perfectly honest, I think the memory cells have gone on that
3 one, too, Your Honour, but that was my memory of him.
4 MR. BOS: May I continue?
5 Q. Did you pay any other visits to Heliodrom -- to the Heliodrom?
6 A. Yes, I did. I went following the following day, I think. That
7 was only one more. And then I think I was -- I was required for duty back
8 at the headquarters there for a while, and at a later stage I accompanied
9 General Morillon to -- to the camp, and that was a few days later when
10 there had' been significant international media interest in what was
11 happening in the camp.
12 Q. Do you recall any specifics of the visit to Heliodrom with General
14 A. The visit was -- when -- when we arrived in the camp that day, all
15 the women and children had gone. The explanation was they had been
16 relocated. And probably about a significant number of the men had also
17 disappeared with no real explanation other than they'd been relocated to
18 the -- it was indicated they'd been relocated back to their homes.
19 However, a consequent investigation proved that incorrect.
20 Q. You just said consequent investigation proved that incorrect.
21 Could you clarify that sentence, please?
22 A. Well, simply we were able to follow up with a couple of people and
23 find they were at home with a couple of UNMO teams and found out they
24 weren't there.
25 Q. Did you eventually find out where these people went?
1 A. Over the -- over the following months really. These people would
2 crop up both in East Mostar. A lot of them ended up in East Mostar. And
3 I -- from memory we -- a few showed up in Jablanica as well. And that
4 was, you know, just as people, various UNHCR people or UNMOs came across
5 them, and at some stage they'd said they'd been in the Helo.
6 Q. That's -- now, earlier we've been discussing the work of -- of
7 these joint commissions and these joint patrols that were being
8 conducted. Now, what -- what happened with the work of the joint
9 commission after the 9th of May? Did -- did that continue, the work of
10 the joint commission?
11 A. I believe it did. It -- it continued for -- for some time.
12 However, it -- its effectiveness was reasonably limited, and I think it
13 eventually broke down. I -- yeah. I cannot recall that, but it went for
14 some time, and it was still going when Morillon was there, because we had
15 an -- a joint commission meeting at that -- before we went into the camp.
16 So it went for a little bit longer, but it eventually broke down, but I
17 can't put a days to when it did and I can't really call the specific
18 incident -- incident that made it break down.
19 Q. Do you recall that the water supply to East Mostar ever became a
20 topic of discussion in the joint commission?
21 A. The water supply was -- was certainly an issue. East Mostar had
22 no water, and there was -- it was believed that there was the capability
23 to reinstate that from the west side via either a temporary or a permanent
24 line under the Tito -- what was known as the Tito Bridge.
25 Q. And was that line ever established?
1 A. To my memory, no.
2 Q. Could I ask you to look at Exhibit 2657, please. Now, this is an
3 UNMO report dated the 6th of June, 1993, and I would like to draw your
4 attention to paragraph number F of this report, and I'll read it out.
5 "Utilities: BiH are repeatedly asking for UN assistance with utility
6 restoral, particularly with regard to providing an escort so necessary
7 work can be done on pipeline on Tito bridge. So far, SpaBat has declined
8 to provide escort, as HVO refuse to agree to work stating situation is too
9 dangerous until separation and withdrawal of forces in Mostar complete."
10 Now, I'll continue a little further. It says: "Request that HVO
11 be put on pressure at the highest possible level to allow repair work to
12 proceed ASAP."
13 Does this report summarise the situation as to the water supply?
14 A. Certainly my recollection of it would tend to indicate that that
15 was fairly accurate, both the fact that -- that probably the UNPROFOR
16 didn't provide the support and must also the point that the HVO were
17 unwilling to reinstate it.
18 Q. Witness, did there come a time in June that UNMO opened an office
19 in east -- opened an office in East Mostar?
20 A. Yes. I believe it was about that time.
21 Q. The 6th of June?
22 A. Close to, yeah.
23 Q. Now -- and I think you've testified earlier that is it correct
24 that you became the team leader of this -- of this UNMO office in East
1 A. Yes, I was.
2 Q. Can you tell us, and I'll provide you with a map for that, but can
3 you explain to us where the office of UNMO was being established in East
5 A. Yeah. After some --
6 Q. And maybe we can mark it on two different maps. We can -- you can
7 mark it on this map and also this smaller map of Mostar.
8 A. [Marks]
9 Q. Could I -- again, maybe could I ask you to put your initials on
10 this map?
11 MR. BOS: And if we could get an IC number for this map,
12 Your Honours.
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] And please write today's date,
14 7th of May.
15 Mr. Registrar, can we have an IC number?
16 THE REGISTRAR: Of course, Your Honour. This map will become
17 Exhibit IC 538.
18 MR. BOS:
19 Q. Mr. Finlayson, did you also put the date, today's date? Yes.
20 Okay. I'm sorry, it's not visible from here.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Praljak, is there a problem?
22 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] Yes, there is, because there
23 are no houses there. These aren't houses. That is hill.
24 MR. BOS:
25 Q. Witness, can you -- can you explain a little bit more about, you
1 know, this office? How did it look like, where it was situated, and ...
2 A. You've got me worried now. It was -- it was above the main road
3 that ran from Split to Sarajevo. It was essentially up the hill where I
4 believe I've marked it. There are no roads there, but there are like
5 extended driveways up to a number of houses. So it was quite elevated.
6 Q. Witness, is it correct that you provided the Prosecution yesterday
7 with a couple of photographs of, you know, of -- depicting this house and
8 also the view that you had from this house?
9 A. That's correct.
10 MR. BOS: Could the witness be shown, and I think these
11 photographs are in e-court so we can -- we can show them on the e-court,
12 exhibits --
13 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] We'll first give a number to the
14 map that we have on screen at the moment.
15 MR. BOS: I think that was IC 538. I think it was given an IC
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Ah, very well.
18 MR. BOS: So could we look at Exhibit 10000, please, 10000.
19 Q. It will appear on your screen, Mr. Finlayson, if you just a
20 minute. In fact, the photograph is also in your bundle. We've -- if you
21 look at Exhibit 10000, you will find the photograph there as well.
22 A. It's up now.
23 Q. Witness, what is depicted -- depicted on this photograph?
24 A. That's -- that's the -- what became the UNMO office headquarters
25 in East Mostar. It's -- that particular side would be looking out to the
1 west across the town.
2 Q. When was this photograph taken?
3 A. That would have been taken in June at some point.
4 Q. Now, we -- we see a flag up there. What kind of flag is that?
5 A. That's a blue United Nations flag.
6 Q. Could we move to the next photograph, which is 10001. Okay,
7 Witness, it has appeared now. Could you just again describe to us what's
8 depicted on this photograph?
9 A. That's a -- that's the view from one of the windows in the -- in
10 the UNMO accommodation there, and it's a little built deceiving because it
11 is taken with a telephoto lens. It -- it points down to I think the -- in
12 the Prosecution -- I mean, the Defence may be able to correct me, but I
13 believe the building on the left hand in the foreground was the P -- PPT
14 [sic] building, and that runs -- and the intersection you can see behind
15 it would be the Spanski Square. Behind the right-hand side of the
16 fore-building would be the Tito Bridge area.
17 Q. Maybe since we have it on the screen, Mr. Finlayson, we can
18 actually make markings on this photograph on the screen with an electronic
19 pen. So you've been referring to a couple of places.
20 When you were referring to the PTT building, could you mark that
21 building with the number A, please.
22 A. [Marks]
23 Q. Then you were referring to the -- the Spanish Square?
24 A. Spans can I square.
25 Q. Could you mark that with a B, please?
1 A. [Marks]
2 Q. And you've also bee referring to Tito Bridge. Where would the
3 Tito Bridge have been? Could you mark that with a C.
4 A. [Marks]. It's in behind there.
5 MR. BOS: Could we get a number for photograph, this.
6 THE REGISTRAR: This is Exhibit 539.
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I have one question which should
8 have put to you. You said that this picture was taken with a photo [as
9 interpreted] lens through a window of the office. As the crow flies, what
10 is distance between the building and the where this photo was taken?
11 THE WITNESS: Sorry, between the building at the foreground there?
12 I would say probably less than a kilometre. Less than a kilometre would
14 MR. BOS:
15 Q. And what would have been the distance between the UNMO office and
16 point B, the Spanish Square?
17 A. Probably around 1.500 metre I would be guessing.
18 Q. And between the Tito Bridge?
19 A. C is probably around 1.100, 1.200.
20 Q. Thank you. Could we now move to Exhibit 10002, the next
21 photograph. By the way, this photograph was also taken in June 1993.
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. What's depict the on this photograph?
24 A. That's -- that's essentially another photograph taken from the
25 same area. That's taken after either I can't recall or an artillery or
1 tank round hit the PTT building there. In the background, again you've
2 got the Spanski Square on the right-hand side, and in the middle of the
3 building in the background I think we always referred to it as a car park.
4 To be honest I'm not a hundred per cent sure whether it was a car park or
5 it just looked like one at the time. And I can't recall what the other
6 buildings are, but effectively it's just -- just further south of the
7 previous drawing. The front line would have run --
8 Q. Would it help if you -- if you want to make a drawing on this?
9 You think you can draw the front line on this photograph?
10 A. It's a little bit hard, but the front -- the front line was
11 probably in front, sort of down behind -- running -- if you just go a
12 centimetre above the top of the PTT building, you drew a line along there,
13 if you took that down that would probably be roughly where the front line
14 was, because the front line was roughly one block --
15 Q. Why don't you take the electronic pen --
16 A. Have you just got the map that was here before?
17 Q. Maybe just on the photograph -- you can draw on the photograph the
19 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes, Mr. Praljak?
20 THE ACCUSED PRALJAK: [Interpretation] Your Honours, just to remind
21 you, and you've seen this a number of times from the other side, this
22 isn't the PTT building. It is the Razvitak building which we've already
23 seen on many previous photographs taken from the west. So this hit came
24 from the east. Just to clarify matters straight away, and then it will be
25 easier to discuss matters later on.
1 THE WITNESS: This --
2 MR. BOS:
3 Q. Okay. So draw an arrow there. So that line would then be
4 continuing, so -- above that building?
5 A. It's behind there, and it went in here somewhere, in between these
6 buildings here. It's a bit hard on this drawing to actually, yeah, put it
8 Q. Would you please put your signature here on a date, and if --
9 A. This is taken from East Mostar, taken from the UNMO building,
10 taken by myself with my camera in the month of June.
11 MR. BOS: Can we get an IC number for this document, please.
12 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honour, this will become IC 540.
13 MR. BOS: Next photograph, 100003, please.
14 Q. We can enlarge this a bit, but can you describe what's depicted
16 A. Yeah. The -- I've just taken a shot of a -- of a mortar entering
17 a property, which I recall was slightly south of the accommodation. The
18 exact location I can't recall. It would have been in the -- I guess what
19 is marked up on the map, the Brankovic or somewhere around there, but
20 that's -- that's all it is, is a mortar going into a residential or --
21 sorry, I can't say it's a residential property because I can't recognise
23 Q. If we could then move to Exhibit 100004, please.
24 Witness, what's depicted on this photograph?
25 A. That's the -- the road from the -- the west to the east, looking
1 towards the Tito -- the entrance to the Tito Bridge.
2 Q. And is this taken from the west side or the east side of Mostar?
3 A. That is from the west side. Can't -- can't remember exactly, but
4 I would say probably around May. May or very early June, but it was
5 before -- before we set up base.
6 Q. Just maybe to assist everyone here in the courtroom, if we can --
7 if you can put -- locate on the map on the ELMO the position where you --
8 from where you took this photograph.
9 A. [Marks]
10 Q. Well, you've marked the position?
11 MR. BOS: Maybe we can get an IC number for this as well.
12 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honour, this map will become Exhibit IC 541.
13 MR. BOS:
14 Q. Witness --
15 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Please write your name down and
16 sign it, please.
17 MR. BOS: It's been done, Your Honour.
18 THE WITNESS: Sorry, I have, Your Honour.
19 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.
20 MR. BOS:
21 Q. Witness, can you describe your daily tasks in your office at East
22 Mostar? What was the daily -- your daily activities?
23 A. They varied. The main -- in the early stages we were -- we were,
24 of course, trying to enhance the cooperation between the BiH and the --
25 and the Croatian -- Bosnian Croatian forces or the HVO. We did regular
1 patrols between the east and the west to talk to the various headquarters.
2 We had established a liaison office with the -- with the HVO, and it was a
3 Mr. Raguz, and we used to talk to Mr. Raguz or Blinka [phoen] Maric. And
4 on the opposing side we would often talk to the local commander there who
5 was Esad Husum [phoen] or -- sorry, I've forgotten his name, but it
6 will ...
7 Yeah, I haven't got that quite right, but anyway, so we would
8 generally try and facilitate things such as the reconnection of water. We
9 established communications with some difficulty. The difficulty there
10 was, from memory, more from the armija side, but we -- we did get
11 communications. However, they didn't last terribly long.
12 Q. When you say, "We established communications," communications with
14 A. Between the -- our headquarters and the HVO. It was only a field
15 telephone, so it was never going to be a great success with the amount of
16 activity occurring.
17 Q. How long -- how long did -- this communication operated? How long
18 did it function well?
19 A. Well, when it functioned we very rarely got answered, and then
20 when it -- it probably only lasted two or three days before the wire was
21 broke somewhere.
22 Q. And what were the type of things that you would be discussing with
23 this HVO liaison officer?
24 A. Well -- well, generally, I mean, the majority from the things from
25 the team in East Mostar was obviously complaining about the main -- the
1 targeting of the -- of our property and our vehicles. That -- that
2 actually grew over time. I think initially the direct targeting of us
3 probably wasn't that great. It seemed to grow over time.
4 We were always trying to facilitate aid or -- or occasionally
5 medical evacuations. Occasionally we arranged and the HVO allowed
6 evacuation of, say, a seriously injured or ill child to their hospital
7 which had the facilities.
8 It -- nine times out of ten it was to try and -- the main
9 concentration was to try and reduce the number of impacts on the
10 population of East Mostar, which was primarily civilian but, obviously,
11 also military.
12 Q. What do you mean by "reduce the number of impacts on the
14 A. Well, certainly, I mean, the -- the bombardment of East Mostar was
15 not always heavy. It was extremely heavy after we turned -- when we moved
16 in there on the -- whenever it was, the 5th of June. For a couple days
17 there, there was a significant amount of impacts, primarily on the western
18 side just immediately on the west of the Neretva River, which was only
19 manned by military personnel, but also a significant number in the area
20 between the main highway and the Neretva River on the west.
21 Q. And was this also a military area?
22 A. It was heavily populated with civilians that had been, as we
23 mentioned earlier, relocated or forced over to the west side or whatever.
24 They -- there were military -- there was military equipment that was being
25 used in that area at times.
1 Q. Let me just ask you to clarify something which you just said. You
2 said, "It was heavily populated with civilians. It had been as we
3 mentioned earlier relocated or forced over to the west side." Is that
4 what you meant to say?
5 A. Yeah. What I'm saying there is -- is forced by either the trend
6 of the fighting or they -- they kept coming over in the nights with
7 reports that they were being forced across.
8 Q. But forced across from where to where?
9 A. From the -- the HVO occupied part of the town to -- into East
11 Q. Can you give a bit of an indication on -- on the average number of
12 shells that -- that fell in those first few days in June while you were
14 A. I believe in the first few days it was in the thousands. It -- I
15 may be exaggerating here, but I seem to remember it was significantly
16 high. But that was only for a couple of days and then it would be
17 sporadic. It would possibly be -- range between 10, 12, 40 [sic] a day,
18 maybe even down to one or two a day every so often. Yeah. And there were
19 obviously some return fire. And, sorry, those -- those numbers are total.
20 Q. You said there was obviously some return fire. With what kind of
21 weapons did the ABiH return their fire?
22 A. Well, the ABiH primarily had mortars, as I said earlier. That was
23 their main what I would call artillery. And they had to be reasonably
24 conservative with its use, as I understood. But certainly it was -- it
25 was very one-sided if you're looking at the count of impacts on -- on one
1 side. So there's obviously a lot more coming into the east side than was
2 coming -- going into the west side.
3 Q. Now, sometime earlier you've been referring to Muslim civilians
4 being forced to cross over the confrontation line. Did you ever witness
5 that yourself?
6 A. I can remember two occasions where I met up with what I would say,
7 yeah, ones or twos, not people myself coming across having just been
8 forced or allegedly forced over. However, my teams, particularly later in
9 the piece, were able to certainly get more, have more contact with these
10 types of people coming over.
11 It was a frustrating period for us because there were the rumours
12 coming around, but we -- we were unable to actually get to the position
13 where -- where it was safe to actually observe it.
14 Q. Now, if I understand your answer correctly, you're saying that you
15 got this information from people who actually crossed over, but you didn't
16 see it yourself?
17 A. I didn't see it personally. My -- the team leader that took over
18 or reopened the East Mostar office did -- was successful in actually
19 witnessing it.
20 Q. And what is his name?
21 A. Pass. He was a Brit, British. He was a British UNMO.
22 Q. Now, from the stories that you heard and from this -- this team
23 leader that saw something, can you -- can you indicate, and again we still
24 have the map on the ELMO, the areas where -- in Mostar where these Muslim
25 civilians were being forced over the confrontation line?
1 A. Certainly the one -- I should actually clarify, but the Tito
2 Bridge was one area where they actually did come across. In the earlier
3 stages there were always -- we always got to see the people after the
4 event, but there was always -- we will actually called it a bit of a body
5 watch every morning. We'd look out around the Spanski Square area and
6 just see if there were any more bodies out there. Quite often if they
7 came in at night there were always -- well, not always, but that there
8 were quite often stragglers or people that hadn't made it along that --
9 along the road that was in the last photo.
10 So they were coming across the Tito Bridge, and I guess the bodies
11 tend to support the fact that that was the route they were taking.
12 The other thing -- the other area where they came, and I wouldn't
13 be able to put my finger on where -- exactly where they were being put
14 over, but we had a lot coming over the Donja Mahala area and over the --
15 originally over the Stari Grad bridge. And then later -- but they would
16 be forced into the Donja Mahala area, but there was no room for them at
17 the inn there, so they would make it across the Neretva River. And later
18 on there was a temporary bridge put across there.
19 Q. Let me just ask you something to clarify about what you've just
20 said. You've been talking about what you called a body watch that you --
21 you saw bodies at the Spanski Square. Was this in the month of June that
22 you were -- that you were in the UNMO office that you saw these bodies?
23 A. Yes. It was in the early stages of the conflict, and -- well,
24 we -- probably actually through that month, actually, but it wasn't -- it
25 wasn't every day. It was probably every third or fourth day.
1 Q. Can you give a number of the estimate of bodies that saw?
2 A. Not -- not a great number probably. Maybe a dozen over -- over
3 the month. I'm very guarded with that figure, I think.
4 Q. While you were in East Mostar in June 1993, were civilians ever
5 being shot at by the -- by the HVO?
6 A. They were. Civilians were targeted regularly. We had a number of
7 children hurt. We had a number of women, a number of old men. One of
8 my -- one of my patrols had a child shot while the kids had stopped the UN
9 vehicle to try and get lollies or whatever. So it was continual, the
10 sniping on civilians.
11 Q. How did you get your information as to -- as to whether civilians
12 were being shot in East Mostar?
13 A. Well, obviously my patrols. I'd see my guys out and do it and
14 that's as -- as SMO and team leader in June. While I was in East Mostar I
15 actually visited the hospital every night so I could keep track of who was
16 getting hurt and how they were getting hurt.
17 Q. Would you report this information in -- in your UNMO reports?
18 A. I think we did most -- most of the time. I think probably quite
19 tragically you tend to get a bit complacent, but I think that information
20 was relayed in one form or another.
21 Q. Now, just before the break I would like to show you another
22 exhibit, Exhibit 2751. I can direct your -- you have to look in the
24 A. What number is it?
25 Q. 2751, please. If we look at page 2 of this report, under C it
1 reads out: "Mostar relatively low-level fighting today with sporadic
2 small-arms fire." MG, what does that stand for? Maybe you can read it
3 and also give --
4 A. Okay. "Sporadic small-arms fire, machine-gun, anti-aircraft and
5 mortar fire. A woman and child were killed by sniper fire in the east
6 side of Mostar. UNMO seen."
7 Q. Would this be something that you would have reported? This is a
8 report of the 14th of June.
9 A. That would probably be reported by myself, yes.
10 Q. Now --
11 A. Having said that, I -- I didn't see that particular case.
12 However, I do remember it well. A Danish UNMO, Soren Huson [phoen], and a
13 Russian UNMO Oleg Gustav [phoen] were the ones that witnessed that and
14 viewed the bodies.
15 MR. BOS: Your Honours, I look at the clock. I don't know if it's
16 time for a break or whether you want me to continue.
17 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] It is now half past 5.00. We
18 shall have a 20-minute break and resume at 10 minutes to 6.00.
19 --- Recess taken at 5.30 p.m.
20 --- On resuming at 5.51 p.m.
21 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The hearing has resumed.
22 MR. BOS:
23 Q. Mr. Finlayson, during the period in June that you were in East
24 Mostar, was your office in East Mostar ever targeted by HVO fire?
25 A. It was never -- well, it wasn't targeted by artillery or mortar
1 during my time in -- in East Mostar. Personnel and vehicles were often
2 subjected to near misses with small-arms fire, which was most likely to be
3 sniper fire from the opposite side.
4 Q. Were you ever targeted by sniping fire yourself?
5 A. Yes, I was.
6 Q. Can you tell us what happened?
7 A. I guess typically quite often there would tend to be around close
8 by when we went up the stairs to our accommodation on -- I would say on
9 rare occasion. You know, probably once -- once a week you'd -- you would
10 probably say that you were nearly hit or whatever.
11 One particular incident, I was -- and I'm not too sure whether it
12 was -- when it was, but I was going down a road on the east side to --
13 from the Tito Bridge area, and the car was -- had probably around 15
14 rounds fired at it directly above my head for some instance, and then as
15 the aim was adjusted a couple of rounds hit the -- at the rear of the car,
16 underneath more or less, and then back up the top. I had absolutely no
17 doubt that that particular time I was definitely the target and they were
18 going for real. And that --
19 Q. And who do you think was shooting at you at that time?
20 A. I believe due to the angle and where it was coming from it was
21 coming from what we, I believe, term the bank building, which was occupied
22 by the HVO.
23 And another time was at the south end of town when a -- I was
24 actually escorting General -- General -- in fact, he wasn't a general at
25 the time. It was after his time as SMO, and he was working for
1 Stoltenberg, but the past chief military observer, Bo Pellnas. And as we
2 were exiting East Mostar, we were -- our vehicle received certainly one --
3 one hit and probably five, six, eight rounds. We took cover behind --
4 actually, I think it was an old railway wagon or something similar.
5 Q. This particular incident that you just described, do you recall
6 when this was?
7 A. No. It must have been later in the piece. It must have been --
8 that one may have even been around either the end of 1993 or the beginning
9 of 1994. I can't remember the date, sorry. But it was after -- it was
10 after Bo's time as SMO.
11 Q. Just going back to that first incident that you described on the
12 Tito Bridge, was that an incident that took place in -- in June 1993?
13 A. I believe it was June 1993, yeah.
14 Q. Did you ever reported complaints to your HVO liaison officer,
15 Mr. Raguz, in relation to -- to the shooting -- to these shooting
17 A. I think Mr. Raguz probably got very sick of us reporting these
18 incidents. They were always reported.
19 Q. And what would be the response of Mr. Raguz when you reported
20 these incidents?
21 A. Actually, Mr. Raguz probably didn't give a lot of the responses.
22 Most of the responses probably gave -- came from Mr. Maric, who would
23 typically blame soldiers that were out of control or -- yeah, basically
24 soldiers that were out of control that didn't agree with UNPROFOR's
1 Q. Would the situation ever improve after having -- making complaints
2 to Mr. Raguz or to Mr. Maric?
3 A. No.
4 Q. Could I ask you to look at Exhibit 2830, please. And in this
5 document I would like to refer your attention to page 3, 4, and 5. And
6 this is an incident report from an UNMO officer dated the 18th of June,
7 1993. Do you recall the particular incident that is described in this
9 A. Sorry, what paragraph am I reading?
10 Q. No. Page 3 of this report.
11 A. Oh, sorry.
12 Q. Just take a look at this report and tell us whether you recognise
13 this incident.
14 A. Yes, I do. Yes, I recall it well. They were very lucky to get
15 away with that, to be alive.
16 Q. Can you tell a bit more what happened here?
17 A. Essentially they were -- what we used to, in the quieter periods,
18 travel for a period down the front line. Well, yeah, down the front line
19 effectively across from west to east, and this patrol was coming from west
20 to east, and it turned down an area where the front lines are basically
21 across the street, and -- but it also turned a block. So the front line
22 actually turned a 90 degree angle at that point.
23 They turned down to head towards -- at 90 degrees to the road to
24 the Tito Bridge before going over the Tito Bridge, and they received, I
25 can't remember how many, but probably about seven rounds directly into the
1 back of their patrol vehicle. It was a patrol clearly marked with "UN,"
2 and it received, I think from memory, five shots that luckily hit the rim
3 of the spare tyre directly behind the driver, and another one went through
4 slightly left and actually passed between the driver and the passenger,
5 and a couple more went into the back of the car.
6 Q. Now, if you flip of page of this -- of this report, you see that a
7 drawing was made of the incident and then also a drawing of the back of
8 the car on the next page.
9 Now, based on this drawing, where would this fire that hit the
10 UNMO vehicle would have come from?
11 A. Well, I think it's actually shown where the -- where it's got
12 brackets to there, which is the position where I was firing, because the
13 vehicle, it was directly behind the vehicle. There was no doubt of that
14 due to the one that actually passed through the -- through the vehicle
15 when dead straight down the middle of the vehicle.
16 Q. And again, the area where it could have come from, under whose
17 control would that area have been?
18 A. That was HVO at the time.
19 Q. Now, as a result of -- this incident resulted in a decision by the
20 senior military observer in Mostar to withdraw the office -- the UNMO
21 office from East Mostar.
22 A. That's correct. I think it was really the nail in the coffin. I
23 personally disagreed with the decision, but nevertheless, you do as you're
24 told. It was the -- I -- yeah. It was the nail in the coffin, final nail
25 in the coffin. The SMO made the decision that we'd probably lose someone
1 before too long.
2 Q. And why were you against this decision?
3 A. I think -- well, what actually I believe happened, I left the
4 sector after we withdrew, but effectively the UN couldn't get back and
5 there for a short time, I believe. Just having a presence there, being
6 able to report what was happening, I think my impression was that it was
7 keeping -- keeping things at bay a little bit. Otherwise, the situation
8 may have deteriorated with no reports going out.
9 Q. Now, you've said you left the sector. Where did you go and how
10 long did you leave for?
11 A. I left for Kiseljak. I became the -- the UNMO operations officer
12 in the Kiseljak -- in the BH command headquarters. I was up there for, I
13 guess, around three months.
14 Q. And what were your duties in those three months, just in a few
16 A. Effectively we -- we worked very much as a team there but we were
17 concerned about the overall situation in Bosnia, full stop. If --
18 depending on -- on -- what was happening really depended on what
19 operations we were working on. We'd spend a bit of time up Mount Igman
20 with operations happening there between the Serbs and the -- and the
21 armija. We also spent a lot of time in Fojnica, around that area, which
22 at that particular time was -- was active. I also think we -- the Maglaj
23 pocket or at that stage it was a finger, it became a pocket, was also sort
24 of happening at that time, I think.
25 Q. Now, you've said you spent some time at the Mount Igman. Did you
1 ever -- visited Sarajevo this, these three months?
2 A. Yeah, regularly.
3 Q. Regularly. Now, is it correct that you returned to the Mostar
4 area on the 21st of September, 1993?
5 A. That is correct. As -- I returned as the senior military observer
6 at that point.
7 Q. So at that time you were the senior military observer of -- of the
8 BH South on --
9 A. That's correct.
10 Q. Now, having spent some time in Sarajevo as well, and having --
11 coming -- coming back to the area of Mostar, can you tell the Court,
12 looking at the situation in Mostar and comparing it to the situation in
13 the town of Sarajevo, how would you compare these two situations?
14 A. Sarajevo was under siege as -- as East Mostar was. It was lucky
15 to have a high presence of international bodies and a high media presence.
16 Of course the later can be -- can go either ways, but the mere fact that
17 there was a high media presence there meant that things were kept at -- at
18 bay a little bit. Mostar didn't have that.
19 The condition, the fear -- sorry. The conditions for the people
20 on west side was probably better than in Sarajevo. However, the people on
21 the east side, due to the sheer number in such a small area, was worth --
22 was worse both in the humanitarian side, in food side, and -- and because
23 a condensed area and the number of impacts. And when I say the number of
24 impacts compared with -- with Sarajevo, the per metre -- I know I looked
25 at it a couple of times and I can't recall the figure, but the number of
1 times per square kilometre, rather, rounds per day or whatever was -- was
2 significantly more over much of the time in Mostar. And of course the
3 problem was that the -- the media wasn't allowed in.
4 Q. When you returned to Mostar in -- on the 21st of September, 1993,
5 was there an UNMO office in East Mostar?
6 A. Yes. It had been reopened at that stage.
7 Q. And was there also an office in West Mostar?
8 A. I believe it -- yeah. I was -- I was racking my brains on whether
9 it was set up just after I arrived or -- I think it was just after I
10 arrived we set up a -- an office in West Mostar. That -- I mean, that was
11 invaluable because it gave us better representation on both sides.
12 Q. Now, earlier when we spoke about the period of June, about Muslim
13 civilians being forced by the HVO to cross the confrontation line into
14 East Mostar, had this practice stopped in September 1993 when you
16 A. No. I -- no, it hadn't. And in fact, that's when I -- I
17 mentioned that the British UNMO actually got in a position where he could
18 see it and did quite a comprehensive report at the time.
19 Q. So that was --
20 A. That was -- that would have been in September or October.
21 Q. Can I ask you to look at Exhibit 5519, please. And if I can
22 direct your attention to page 3 of this report. And look on the top of
23 the page. I'll read it out, the second part of the paragraph.
24 "HVO released 374 civilians, old men, women and children from West
25 Mostar to East Mostar. HVO opened fire on these people, killing --
1 killing two. UNMOs visited these peoples in refugee camp, report that
2 they are in very bad condition."
3 Is this the situation you just referred to with the British UNMO
4 officer reporting on expulsions? This is a report dated the 30th of
6 Let me ask you, do you recall this -- this particular report?
7 A. I don't recall it, that particular report. Sorry.
8 Q. We can move then to Exhibit 5553, which is a report dated the 1st
9 of October, 1993, and I can direct your attention to page number 5. And
10 under paragraph 8, and I'll read it out again: "Two truckloads of
11 refugees were expelled by HVO across confrontation line from Buna towards
12 Blagaj today. Reportedly these refugees were from Capljina and Dretelj.
13 Reference yesterday's sitrep expelling of refugees across the
14 confrontation line by HVO is very often incident. There are numerous --
15 there are numbers of body lying in no man's land. UNMOs on ground faces
16 difficulties in recognising the bodies as to which are fresh or a month
18 Can you comment on this report?
19 A. I recall the incident vaguely, but I -- no. No. I think it would
20 be safer to say no on that one.
21 MR. KARNAVAS: Your Honour, I don't mean to be -- to interrupt,
22 but I assume that the gentleman was shown these reports and would have
23 given these answers to the Prosecution prior to bringing the witness to go
24 over reports which he now tells us that, you know, he doesn't recall. So
25 perhaps he could just go through the reports that the gentleman has
1 assured him he can testify about at the proofing session rather than
2 reading matters from the report into the record hoping to get something
3 from the witness.
4 MR. BOS:
5 Q. Well, Witness, let me -- let me ask you. As a senior military
6 officer, as a senior military officer in -- in the BH South region, would
7 reports coming from areas like Mostar, would these reports have come to
8 you, and would you have seen them at the -- at the time?
9 A. I would have, and that's why I'm a little bit bemused by this one.
10 But most reports went via me, but of course there were other -- there were
11 times because I was controlling the entire south -- southern area, there
12 were times when they -- they wouldn't necessarily pass across me if I
13 wasn't at the -- at the Medjugorje office. As I say, I -- I recall the
14 incident but I can't provide information.
15 Q. Very well. Witness, do you recall participating in a -- in a
16 cease-fire meeting for the Mostar area around early October 1993? And
17 this was a meeting which involved SpaBat and UN CIVPOL, Mr. Albert
19 A. Yes, I do.
20 Q. And what do you recall about this meeting? If it's -- if it's
21 helpful to you, let me show you an exhibit to you Exhibit 5553?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. Have a look at Exhibit 5553. My apologies, yes. If you can move
24 to page number 4, please. And if you can read paragraph 4, which
25 starting: "The highlight of the CMO's days was attending the cease-fire
1 meeting between the BiH and the HVO chaired by Albert Benabou at SpaBat."
2 Do you read that?
3 A. Yes. I -- I recall the meeting. I think the outcome was as I've
4 alluded to there is probably typical. We always had the problem of
5 dealing with two areas, one where the HVO was in control and one where the
6 armija were in control.
7 MR. KARNAVAS: Your Honour, he just indicated previously that he
8 didn't recognise this document. Now he's talking about alluding to
9 something in the document.
10 THE WITNESS: No, sorry.
11 MR. KARNAVAS: So did the gentleman generate this document? And
12 if he's going to be refreshed, his memory, I think a more proper way to do
13 so might be by pointing him to areas in his notebook, because his notebook
14 are based on notes that he took to meetings that he attended, and that
15 might be --
16 THE WITNESS: This -- can I just --
17 MR. KARNAVAS: Excuse me, sir.
18 THE WITNESS: Sorry.
19 MR. KARNAVAS: You know, we have a procedure here. Nobody is
20 trying to stifle your creativity on the stand.
21 Now, I would like an answer. Did the gentleman generate this
22 document? If not, then he shouldn't be making a reference that he's
23 alluding to passages that he -- he wasn't the author. If he is the author
24 then that's the foundation then he can comment.
25 THE WITNESS: I can say and reply to that that I probably was the
1 author of that particular paragraph. This is a report that has been
2 generated at UNMO BH command, so it would not have been drafted.
3 Sorry, this particular document wouldn't have been drafted in BH
4 but segments -- BH South, rather, but segments of it would have been, and
5 effectively cut and pasted to make the BH command report. If you recall
6 the sequence I explained early on with the chain of command. So this,
7 this segment of my meeting, was most likely reported by myself.
8 MR. BOS:
9 Q. Witness, do you recall who represented the HVO and the ABiH at
10 this meeting?
11 A. I believe Berko Pusic may have been at this one. The armija. I
12 can't recall. Possibly Pasalic, but ...
13 Q. You mention a person named Berko Pusic. Who is Mr. Berko Pusic?
14 What was his function?
15 A. He had a range -- at one stage in the early pieces he was assigned
16 as the liaison person, from memory. This was the case very much in my
17 earlier days in BH South. I think his role as -- as liaison remained but
18 with a presence in East Mostar a lot of that was taken over by Mr. Raguz
19 as the direct contact. He -- I'm struggling to -- to get the correct term
20 that we understood him to -- to have, but it was I think to do with
21 misplaced people. I -- yeah. I -- probably it will come to me.
22 Q. What kind of dealings did the UNMO have with Mr. Pusic?
23 A. We had quite a bit to do with Mr. Pusic. We generally -- quite
24 often when we were stuck or things were not going quite as they were meant
25 to be, Mr. Pusic had an uncanny way of turning up, and generally we used
1 to joke about it, but once he came into the equation we could guarantee we
2 wouldn't get any further. He dealt a lot with the body exchanges.
3 With -- at that point most of the body exchanges were happening
4 between -- well, at the early stages most of the body exchanges were past
5 ones with the Serbs, but then, of course, later on as the Mostar situation
6 developed it -- we also had both body exchanges and prisoner exchanges
7 with -- between the east and west.
8 Q. You said Mr. Pusic had an uncanny way of turning up. Where would
9 he turn up? Could you be more specific?
10 A. If we were stuck somewhere and ranting and raving, trying to get
11 access to, for instance, Mostar, I can remember very clearly one day I had
12 a message to deliver, and it may not have been the same day that a Spanish
13 soldier had been killed, and we wanted access to, number one, deliver the
14 message; number two, deliver assistance to the Spanish soldier. And at
15 that stage the UNMO as well as the Spanish ambulance or -- sorry, medical
16 APC or whatever, was held up at the check-point to Mostar and wasn't
17 allowed in. And that was one instance where I clearly remember Mr. Pusic
18 as -- as being the spokesman.
19 Q. Do you recall when this -- around what time this happened?
20 A. No. I'd need jogging on that one. It would have been -- it may
21 have been around June, July. No, it can't have been July. June.
22 Q. Let's turn back to the meeting, Mr. Finlayson. Let me draw your
23 attention to Exhibit -- two more exhibits on this meeting. Exhibit 5567.
24 If I can draw your attention to page number 3. And this is an UNMO report
25 dated the 2nd of October.
1 Now, on the paragraph 3, and I'll read it and ask you some
2 questions about it. "Meeting continued between HVO and BiH delegations at
3 SpaBat. The memorandum signed at the end of the day covers the protection
4 of civil population covering locations of hospitals, shelling, sniping of
5 civilian targets, et cetera. During the course of the day the primary
6 paragraph concerning cease-fire was deleted. This was primarily due to
7 the HVO opposition to this in such a localised area and would not have
8 signed the document."
9 Now, can you -- let me first ask you, were you the one who
10 reported -- reported this particular paragraph?
11 A. Yes, I believe I was.
12 Q. And what do you mean when you said this was -- to this -- that
13 this was primarily due to the HVO operation to this in such a localised
14 area? Can you explain what you meant by this?
15 A. I think I may have alluded to it earlier that within -- within the
16 BH South area there were -- there was the northern range -- region, part
17 of it, that was controlled by the armija, and on the southern side it was
18 obviously the -- the HVO were really in the controlling seat. So the
19 HVO's opposition was merely to the effect where they believed that we were
20 concentrating on -- on -- on Mostar and the UN wasn't doing the same in
21 the northern area where they were in the -- in the weaker position. So
22 they -- I guess they thought there was an unbalance there.
23 Q. If we can now move to Exhibit 5571. You see this is an UNPROFOR
24 civil affairs document which actually attaches the text of the memorandum
25 that was signed as a result of this -- of this meeting. And if I could
1 ask you first maybe to move to the last page, to the signators. That is
2 page 4 of the document.
3 It says here Mr. Berislav Pusic for the HVO. Now you've been
4 referring to Berko Pusic. Would this have been the same person?
5 A. I believe -- I believe so.
6 Q. And who signed the document on behalf of the BiH?
7 A. Mr. Pusic, Berislav.
8 Q. No, for the BiH?
9 A. For the BiH? Alija Alikadic.
10 Q. Let me ask you a couple of questions on the content of this
11 memorandum, and if I could ask you to go to part number 2 which
12 reads "Protection of civilian populations."
13 Now, under 1A it reads the following: "The parties pledge to take
14 special efforts to protect the civil population throughout Mostar --"
15 THE INTERPRETER: Counsel please slow down when they read, please.
16 MR. BOS:
17 Q. "The parties pledge to take special efforts to protect civilian
18 population throughout Mostar. In particular, the following steps shall be
20 "A. Military installations shall be situated at a reasonable
21 distance from the hospitals, apartments, buildings, other dwellings and
22 public areas."
23 Why was this paragraph included in the memorandum?
24 A. I believe it was included because of the HVO's insistence that the
25 BiH were firing from the vicinity of the hospital in east -- East Mostar.
1 Q. And was this in fact the case? Did this happen?
2 A. I believe on -- in cases it was confirmed by -- I know I confirmed
3 it at least once myself, and my team over the next year probably would
4 have confirmed it three or four times.
5 Q. And what kind of action did you undertake when such a situation --
6 A. Well, just reversed roles, really. We'd go to the -- the
7 headquarters of the armija in East Mostar and get them to shift it and try
8 and monitor it as much as we could.
9 Q. And if you asked them to shift it, would they -- would they
10 actually do that?
11 A. They would. But on occasion it would find its way back there or
12 to another similar place.
13 Q. Let me draw your attention to paragraph number 3. "In accordance
14 with the provisions of Article 3 of the IV Geneva Convention, no violence
15 to life or outrages upon personal dignity of people, including their
16 expulsion from their home or territory, shall be perpetrated."
17 Why was this paragraph included?
18 A. That would have been as a direct result of the -- the expulsions
19 or the flow of people from the west to east that was being enforced by the
20 HVO and also the -- I guess it also covers the sniping.
21 Q. Okay. That's it for the document.
22 Mr. Finlayson, do you recall ever visiting -- in October ever
23 visiting the Donja Mahala area in East Mostar?
24 A. I did, definitely.
25 Q. And what can you recall about this visit?
1 A. Essentially I -- I actually went over there to -- to investigate
2 the claims of an aerial bombardment. I'm not too sure, but they certainly
3 had a fairly large explosion in one area. However, we also went along.
4 They also reported the rolling of tyres filled with explosives down the
5 hill, which was immediately behind the area, and --
6 Q. Do you recall the name of that hill?
7 A. We always referred to it as the -- the Hum. Hum, H-u-m, I think,
8 if I remember.
9 And so, I mean, that was confirm as much as we confirmed. There
10 were signs of -- of tyres that had -- both exploded and unexploded tyres.
11 The armija had put up a makeshift fence to stop these things hitting the
12 accommodation blocks where the people were -- were living.
13 Q. And based on what you saw, would you agree that -- that these
14 tyres actually had -- had been rolling from the hills? What was your
15 conclusion as to this investigation?
16 A. I -- I actually did conclude that they -- it looked like they had
17 been done, certainly the type of damage in the location and the
18 surrounding evidence. I don't think it was necessary a great success, but
19 it certainly did some significant damage to lower floor of these
21 Q. Now, as a senior military observer in the region, did you ever
22 make complaints to the HVO authority as -- on things that were reported to
23 you by -- by UNMO observers under your supervision?
24 A. We did. Again, because I was involved in the broader side of it,
25 quite often I'd delegate that to either my deputy or -- or sometimes just
1 senior competent members, but all -- all reports that we confirmed were
2 taken up with the -- the authorities at the local level in general, and I
3 guess the -- the scheme of attack was that all these reports going via
4 Kiseljak and Zagreb would -- would prompt, as I knew it did from my time
5 in the headquarters, would prompt discussions even at a higher level.
6 Q. Now, at your level, if you would raise the complaints at your
7 level, to who would you complain?
8 A. It varied, I guess, on who was there and the incident. I made a
9 lot of complaints. I still used my retrofit. Occasionally we would, if
10 it was significant or if we got direction from the higher powers to maybe
11 make a point of it, we would do it to General Petkovic in Citluk or I --
12 later we -- we went over to Posusje to -- with General Roso.
13 Q. Just for the purposes of the transcript it didn't pick up the
14 place where you would have -- you said General Petkovic in --
15 A. Citluk.
16 Q. Citluk. And what was in Citluk?
17 A. It was where his headquarters was based.
18 Q. And how would you make these complaints, verbally or in writing?
19 A. General -- generally, and verbally I think on a couple of
20 occasions and it would probably only be a couple of occasions we would
21 have penned a letter, and that would have been typically after discussions
22 with the high headquarters that maybe they wanted to just, you know, put
23 something in writing, black and white.
24 Q. Do you recall anything about the content of the complaint that you
25 would have raised with General Petkovic?
1 A. Well, generally the tipped attacks on UNMO and civilian
2 population. That was a -- general, run of the mill complaints we have.
3 We had various occasions where UNMO vehicles were detained maybe ransacked
4 or whatever, and most of those went in writing if they had interfered with
5 the UNMO vehicle directly.
6 MR. BOS: Your Honours, I see Ms. Alaburic --
7 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Yes.
8 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I apologise. I
9 apologise to my learned friend for interrupting as well, but I think we
10 must be more specific about this issue. When were those objections
11 raised, and what specific events were those in relation to, the
12 complaints? Because this general question can relate to any complaints at
13 all, and we must know when this occurred in order to know what position
14 General Petkovic was holding at that time. Thank you.
15 MR. BOS:
16 Q. Witness, you've heard the Defence question, and I'll ask again.
17 Can you think of a specific incident where you went to General Petkovic
18 and complained about the incident?
19 A. I believe one particular case was when a vehicle was -- was
20 stopped and searched, and the -- the interpreter, in fact, who was
21 Bosnian Croatian interpreter, was given quite a hard time by the -- by the
22 people. I think one of the cameras had its films -- from one of the UNMOs
23 had its films taken out of the camera and developed despite the fact that
24 there was no military information in it, and that was assured. So that
25 was one -- one case, and I think that occurred, if I remember correctly,
1 over in Siroki Brijeg.
2 Q. Do you know when this occurred?
3 A. No. I need a hand with the dates, I'm afraid.
4 Q. Let me show you an exhibit, which is Exhibit 5990. The incident
5 you've been -- just been referring to, is that the incident that's being
6 discussed in this particular document?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. And who is this --
9 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I do have an
10 objection about this question. It appears based on this document that the
11 complaint was not made to General Petkovic, as the witness has so far been
12 saying. Thank you.
13 MR. BOS:
14 Q. Well, I was going to ask you. Witness, to whom is this letter
16 A. It's addressed to the Chief of Staff in Citluk, who -- certainly
17 from my memory I think that's what we referred to General Petkovic as.
18 And also the local commander over in Siroki Brijeg.
19 Q. What was the function of General Petkovic, as you recall it?
20 A. Well, certainly he was in control of the -- of the HVO. He was in
21 our area, as I say, in my southern area. We viewed Mr. Petkovic as -- as
22 the man at the top as far as -- yeah, as I say, the southern area goes.
23 Q. Now, this has been a written complaint. Did you ever have any
24 verbal complaints made to Mr. -- to General Petkovic?
25 A. Yes, we did, and I know at one stage my deputy spent a few days
1 following some instances up with him. I talked to General Petkovic
2 probably only -- probably a couple reasons directly about complaints, but
3 I -- I can't recall specifics on that, but I know we met a couple of
4 times, and I think it was pretty much run of the mill stuff. At a later
5 occasion I discussed some deployment of UNMOs with him, but didn't have a
6 lot of contact other than possibly the -- the formal meetings at the
7 earlier part of my time in BH South.
8 Q. Witness, in the answer you just gave and, you know, maybe this is
9 probably a language thing, you used the expression "It was pretty much run
10 of the mill stuff." It --
11 A. Oh, sorry.
12 Q. Can you explain to us what does that mean?
13 A. Sorry. Apologies for that. The -- it would be what we saw as --
14 as normal way of perhaps the attacks on UN people or civilians had -- had
15 got to a degree whereas getting to a higher level, and -- and we wanted to
16 bypass the local command in Mostar itself to maybe try and get a bit more
17 power put through. And that, yeah, I think generally worked for a few
18 days anyway.
19 Q. Well, just to ask you again, you say that worked -- generally
20 worked for a few days anyway. What do you mean by that?
21 A. Well, we found like that --
22 THE INTERPRETER: Would the speakers kindly make pauses between
23 questions and answers for the sake of interpreters. Thank you.
24 THE WITNESS: We found that if we did push it to the higher level
25 it would -- at times we would notice a decrease in certainly attacks
1 against the UN, but these were never long lasting. In fact, sometimes it
2 had no effect.
3 MR. BOS:
4 Q. You've been referring in the last couple of minutes on
5 occasions -- on several occasions to attacks on -- on the UN. Now, during
6 your time as -- as a senior military observer from September 1993 onwards
7 to March 1994 that you left, was this something that happened throughout
8 that period or that -- well, in this case UNMO officers were being
9 attacked, or did this happen for only a certain period in time?
10 A. The attacking of UNMO people as far as temporarily, let's say,
11 detaining them and obstructing them to the point where they did -- in the
12 case that we previously discussed where they interfered with their
13 equipment and their vehicles, that didn't happen a great deal. And this
14 is probably off the top of my head half a dozen times in that period
15 there. But of course the attacks on -- against UNMOs as far as sniping
16 and the vehicles perhaps towards the end of the year got worse.
17 Q. Now, Witness, what I intend to do is show you a number of
18 documents. There will probably be about a dozen which all -- relates to
19 these -- these attacks, and I'm going to present them in chronological
20 order, and some of them we can move through very quickly. Others I may
21 have -- I may ask you a couple of additional questions, but all of them
22 are all UNMO reports, and I would like to go through them -- through -- I
23 would like to go through them in chronological order. And if I can just
24 direct your attention first to Exhibit 5326. And this is a report dated
25 the 23rd of September, 1993.
1 If I can direct your attention in this report to page number 3, at
2 the bottom. I'll read -- I'll read it out under 10(C). "Routine meetings
3 with local authorities. M6, West Mostar. Meeting with HVO authority at
4 Mostar assures to stop sniping fire at UNMO house on the east most (M 5)."
5 Now, here's a reference to the office in West Mostar meeting with
6 the HVO authorities to make a complaint. Can you -- can you tell me how
7 often did these -- or did they report to these HVO liaison officers in
8 West Mostar about these type of incidents?
9 A. Daily. I -- I -- from memory, I believe Mike X-ray 6 had a
10 routine meeting set up. That's why we established a team and -- in the
11 west bank, so we could maintain that communication with the HVO, and -- as
12 time went on, it was impossible to go across the front, and so -- and they
13 had a daily meeting. In fact, they may have had two, but I can't
14 categorically say that. But they definitely had one meetings, and they
15 would also if at stages where the UNMO house was -- was targeted, they
16 would go down immediately. So maybe something -- the person could be
17 identified quickly.
18 Q. And what would generally be the response of the HVO when these
19 complaints were made?
20 A. I -- it was a mixture. I think generally their reply was along
21 the lines which I indicated earlier, soldiers out of -- out of -- out of
22 control. They would always put on -- always give the opinion that they
23 would go and do something about it. However, we -- because nothing ever
24 improved, then as I say I think it actually got worse. We feel there was
25 very little action taken.
1 Q. Can I -- let's move to Exhibit 5404 in the bundle. And this is a
2 report dated the 26th of September, 1993. And if I can direct your
3 attention to page number 2. "Today UNMO house at East Mostar was fired
4 upon by HVO snipers."
5 Do you see that?
6 A. I do.
7 Q. Now, on this same report if we move to page number 3, and this is
8 under C(3), it reports about -- about the mortar shells that were landed
9 in Mostar on that particular day. And it says: "... East Mostar (Blagaj,
10 Koncine and Dracevice) was hit by tank shells and 8 X 120-millimetre
11 mortar shells. The centre (North Camp) was reportedly hit by 30 X mortar
12 shells and northern part (Potoci and Bijelo Polje) was hit by three tank
13 and 6 X 120-millimetre mortars."
14 And last sentence as to the: "... local hospital shows 8 civilians
15 were wounded and 2 soldiers wounded (1 died later)."
16 Now, if you would comment on this report as to the shelling. Was
17 this -- and you would rate it as to, was it a heavy attack or an average
18 attack or how would you rate that if you read this report?
19 A. Moderate. It certainly wasn't a heavy attack but it wouldn't be a
20 normal day. Above -- above average.
21 Q. Can I ask you now to move to Exhibit 6389. And that is a -- is a
22 report -- this is a letter from lieutenant commander Dan Ashitey. Who is
23 that person?
24 A. He was deputy -- my deputy senior military observer for BH South.
25 Q. Now, this is a protest letter because of a deliberate shooting
1 upon UN military observers, and I'll read this out. "This incident that
2 took place on Tuesday, November 2nd between 3.00 and 4.00 in and around
3 the house in which UN military observers were accommodated on the left
4 bank was the fourth confirmed incident within a single week. So we do not
5 believe that it happened by an accident or that somebody shot at random.
6 Accuracy and the frequency indicate that the snipers were shooting in
7 order to kill UN army observers."
8 Now, it talks here about, you know, the fourth incident in a
9 single week. Does -- does that surprise you?
10 A. No. No, it doesn't. As a -- well, no, it doesn't. The sniping,
11 as I said, I think, actually got worse, and in the later periods,
12 particularly in the house where they started -- kept firing through the
13 gap in the window seemed to become quite regularly -- regular, and it
14 appeared to only occur when people were in the -- were in the area.
15 Q. And when it says that snipers were shooting in order to kill the
16 UN army observers, does that surprise you?
17 A. Again, I think the -- it doesn't surprise me. I don't believe
18 that every time it was to kill. I think there was a scare tactic to
19 possibly convince the UN to -- to disestablish the base in East Mostar.
20 However, as it went on, they -- they certainly got closer, and as I say,
21 they were firing through the window of the door, and typically when people
22 were passing through it. We were lucky, I believe, that the range was --
23 was significant, and possibly they weren't that accurate either.
24 Q. If I -- can I direct your attention to the third paragraph of that
25 letter, and this is what Mr. Ashitey says: "We believe that some
1 individuals would like to create large disagreements between UN and HVO by
2 shooting and perhaps killing some of the observers. Therefore, we appeal
3 to you once more to help us resolve this problem."
4 Now, what has been written here, is that what the UNMO position
5 was, that you believe there were individuals that would like to create
6 large disagreement to UN and HVO?
7 A. That obviously didn't my letter. I would have interpreted it
8 different. Rather than creating a -- a rift between the two, the UNMO, I
9 believed it was more to intimidate the UN forces. That would be the
10 correct word, "intimidate."
11 Q. We can move then to Exhibit 6686. And I'm not going to ask you
12 any questions, just ask you to confirm on page 2, under paragraph 3, where
13 it's reported: "UNMO house in East Mostar received sniping, short arms
14 fire. One round went through the window." Is that reported on that? And
15 this is dated the 16th of November, 1993?
16 A. Again, that's been cut and paste from the BH reports, but I think
17 it just indicates that it was reasonably relentless.
18 Q. We then move two weeks later, the 1st of December, 1993. Exhibit
19 6993. And if I can direct your attention to page number 7.
20 Under C: "General sniping fire around East Mostar UNMO
21 accommodation is still going on."
22 Under E: "A meeting was held with UNMOs Mostar operation command.
23 Operation command stated he would give maximum support to all humanitarian
24 effort through Stolac crossing. HVO will cooperate with UNMOs in stopping
25 sniping fire in Mostar and will double efforts to trap those shooting at
1 UNMO accommodation and vehicle."
2 Who would have been -- it's referring to the HVO commander.
3 Who -- who would have been the commander who would have made this
5 A. I can't recall this particular incident, but I -- with the HVO
6 Mostar OP command. Mostar OP. It would either be General Petkovic or
7 Lasic or -- Colonel Lasic.
8 Q. So this is the first --
9 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I would really like
10 to ask my colleague not to speculate about names. We're dealing with
11 serious things, and if the witness is not quite certain and doesn't have
12 definite knowledge to refrain from guessing.
13 MR. BOS:
14 Q. What makes you say that it's either Mr. Lasic or Mr. Petkovic,
15 Mr. Finlayson?
16 A. Mainly because it's dealing with a little bit further away than
17 just Mostar. So it -- it's encompassing Bijelo and the Stolac crossing
18 area. So I -- I -- yeah.
19 MS. ALABURIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I really have to
20 insist now that we clarify the circumstances on the basis of which the
21 witness makes his conclusion that it was General Petkovic or Mr. Lasic,
22 because what he's just said is not sufficient grounds to make any
23 conclusions about any of the names. So could we clarify that, please.
24 Thank you.
25 THE WITNESS: I don't -- I don't believe I can clarify it.
1 MR. BOS: Your Honours, I think it's -- it's about 7.00, and maybe
2 this is a good time to have the break, to stop for the day.
3 JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Witness, as you have taken the
4 oath, you are now a witness in the hands of justice, and you have -- can
5 have no more contacts with the OTP. As you know, the hearing will be held
6 tomorrow morning, so make sure you are back tomorrow morning at 9.00.
7 Thank you.
8 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 7.00 p.m.,
9 to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 8th day of May,
10 2007, at 9.00 a.m.