1 Tuesday, 16 July 2002
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.00 a.m.
6 JUDGE MAY: Yes, Mr. Milosevic.
7 WITNESS: MERITA DEDAJ [Resumed]
8 [Witness answered through interpreter]
9 Cross-examined by Mr. Milosevic: [Continued]
10 Q. [Interpretation] Well, let's continue where we left off yesterday.
11 Do you know who these people were who were allegedly killed in the village
12 of Deve Babaj?
13 A. Yes. Yes, I do.
14 Q. Well, who were they?
15 A. They were Albanians who lived in Deve.
16 Q. Well, do you know their names, perhaps, or something more about
17 them, who they were, except for saying that they were Albanians?
18 A. No, I don't.
19 Q. And do you know anybody, anybody whatsoever, who was an eyewitness
20 to these alleged killings that you're talking about?
21 A. Yes. My uncle was there, because he buried them and he saw them
22 with his own eyes.
23 Q. I understood you to say that your uncle was called by the
24 commander of the unit to go and bury the people. I think that's what you
25 said, isn't it?
1 A. Yes.
2 Q. So he wasn't there when they were actually killed, was he? So he
3 wasn't an eyewitness to the killing itself.
4 JUDGE MAY: We've been over that yesterday.
5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Very well.
6 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
7 Q. Now, you claim that the army of Yugoslavia, on the 27th of March,
8 arrived in your village and that a certain officer who, as you claim, had
9 one day before that taken off your uncles for this burial, for the burial
10 of these bodies, and gave you one hour to leave the village. Is that
11 right? And that's what it says on page 2, paragraph 6 of your statement.
12 A. Yes. They forced us for an hour -- they forced everyone to leave
13 the village within an hour.
14 Q. And did he explain to you why you were supposed to leave the
16 A. No. They just told us to get out and go to Albania. And when we
17 left the village, they told us we couldn't go to Albania after all but we
18 were to go to Korenica. And when we got to Brekoc, they turned us back to
20 Q. All right. Now, tell me this: Did he tell you, when he told you
21 to leave the village, did he perhaps tell you that combat activities were
22 expected there and that you should get away from there for your own
23 security and safety?
24 A. No. He just told us we had to get out of the village.
25 Q. And did they tell you to go to Korenica on that occasion?
1 A. Yes. He said to go to Korenica. And we spent a whole week on a
2 meadow there, under their orders.
3 Q. All right. We'll come to that in a little while. So he told you
4 to go to Korenica, not to go to Albania; is that right?
5 A. At the start, when he told us to get out of our houses within an
6 hour, he said, "Go to Albania." But when we got to Brekoc, he said, "You
7 can't go to Albania. Go back to Korenica." It was Nikola Micunovic who
8 said that.
9 Q. So that means that he didn't tell you that in the village, to go
10 to Korenica, as you said a moment ago. It was only when you started off
11 towards Albania that he told you to go to Korenica; is that right?
12 JUDGE MAY: She's just explained what happened. There's no need
13 to repeat it.
14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] All right.
15 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Now, explain this to me, please: In the statement - not this one
17 but the other one given to the investigators of the International Crisis
18 Group - it says that masked policemen whose faces were painted in colours
19 and paint, members of paramilitary forces, expelled you and the members of
20 your family from the house and that one of the policemen tried to set fire
21 to a house but the other Serbs didn't allow him to go through with it.
22 Now, explain to me, please, why this statement is different from
23 what you said a moment ago and from your written statement. Otherwise,
24 this is on page 03014968 of the Serbian version given to the International
25 Crisis Group.
1 JUDGE MAY: Can you follow the question? Have you followed what
2 he said?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. I'm not sure. Does he mean
4 when we left Guska?
5 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Milosevic, are you referring to when they left
7 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] When they left their own village.
8 We're talking about the same event, the event in the statement --
9 JUDGE MAY: Yes. Let the witness -- let the witness answer.
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] When we left the village, they told
11 us, "Get out within one hour," and that's what we did.
12 JUDGE MAY: The point that's made is that in a statement which you
13 made to the -- it's said to the International Crisis Group, it says that
14 there were some masked policemen and members of the paramilitary forces
15 who expelled you and the members of your family from the house.
16 Is it right that there were masked policemen and paramilitaries
18 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes.
19 JUDGE MAY: And the other point that's made is that one of the
20 policemen tried to set fire to a house but the other Serbs prevented him.
21 Did that happen or not?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't remember anything about the
23 burning of a house.
24 JUDGE MAY: Yes, Mr. Milosevic.
25 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. Well, all right, then. Can you explain why the difference between
2 your statement from the one you gave to the International Crisis Group?
3 Why do those two statements differ when they talk about the same event?
4 And both the statements are yours.
5 A. I don't really remember at the moment. They know better than I
6 might what happened. You know what happened. You know what took place in
7 Guska. You know better than I do.
8 Q. When you say they knew what happened better, who do you mean by
9 "they"? You say, "They know better than I."
10 A. No, I mean you. You knew what was going on because you gave the
12 JUDGE MAY: Yes, Ms. Romano.
13 MS. ROMANO: Your Honours, I have here with me the statement, or
14 at least the questionnaire that was made with the witness, and in fairness
15 to the witness, I think that Mr. Milosevic needs to put the entire phrase
16 that was said.
17 JUDGE MAY: Yes. Read out the entire phrase so that we can hear
19 MS. ROMANO: It is -- in the statement, it says Serb policemen
20 tried to burn the witness's house but the other Serbs did not allow him
21 because they wanted to use the house as their shelter.
22 JUDGE MAY: Ms. Dedaj, do you remember anything like that
23 happening now that it's been read out?
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't remember. To say again,
25 there was an attempt to burn the house, but there were people there. It
1 was the same people there.
2 JUDGE MAY: Yes, Mr. Milosevic. We've covered that point now, so
3 move on to the next one.
4 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Just one more question in that regard. Now, what is correct? Did
6 they expel you from your house the way in which you stated or the way you
7 told the International Crisis Group? What did you say?
8 JUDGE MAY: She has explained and we can go no further. So
9 there's no point going back to the point.
10 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, Mr. May, I'm just asking what
11 happened. I assume that I --
12 JUDGE MAY: You've put it to her and you've heard her answer.
13 Now, there's no point going over it again.
14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Very well.
15 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. You claim that members of the Yugoslav army escorted -- or,
17 rather, that they escorted you as you were in the vehicles moving towards
18 Korenica; right?
19 A. Yes. Yes, that's true.
20 Q. Did they provide security for you then? Is that what they were
22 A. No, they didn't provide -- come for security. They came to get us
23 and to expel us from our houses and to leave us a whole week on a meadow.
24 From the 29th of March to the 1st -- to the 5th of April, we spent all our
25 time on a field, on a meadow, without any security whatever.
1 Q. All right, we'll come to that. But on the 26th and 27th of March,
2 was there -- was Djakovica bombed by NATO?
3 A. I don't remember.
4 Q. All right. Now tell us which male members of your village left
5 the village and started out for Korenica? Male members of your family.
6 A. All the village of Guska, the whole village. We all left the
7 village and went off to Korenica. My family too. No one remained behind
8 in Guska at all.
9 Q. All right. Now, you also say that the members of the army and the
10 police force in Korenica ordered the younger people and the women and
11 children to stay out in the meadow, in the field, whereas the old and the
12 elderly were sent to a house; is that right? That's what it says. And my
13 question for you is: Where was your father, uncles, and the other elderly
14 male members of your family at that time?
15 A. All of my family was on the meadow. And the house you mean, there
16 were only old people in it and people with illnesses and very old people.
17 They were not able to survive on the field. Whereas all my family and the
18 whole of the village of Guska otherwise was on the field, on the meadow,
19 for all that time.
20 Q. But already in the next paragraph you claim that the members of
21 the army ordered people to go to different houses in Korenica, to be put
22 up there. That's what it says. Now, which is true? Did they order you
23 to remain in the field or to go to the houses?
24 JUDGE MAY: Where is the reference to the -- their being ordered
25 to go into the houses? Can you just point that out to us, please.
1 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] On the last paragraph of page 2, it
2 says, the last sentence: "They ordered the people to go and be put up in
3 different houses in Korenica. Together with my family, I went -- ordered
4 the people to go and stay in different houses in Korenica. Together with
5 my family, I went to stay at Prend Markaj's house, where I stayed three
7 JUDGE MAY: Let's get this straight. The account which the
8 witness gives in the statement is, first of all, that they stayed in
9 Korenica a week. Then there were about a thousand people in the convoy
10 that moved from Korenica. "When we arrived in Meja-Orize, the army
11 stopped the convoy and ordered the people to go and stay in different
12 houses in Korenica." So there's no discrepancy in what she said. She's
13 talking about two different events.
14 Is it right, Ms. Dedaj, that when you got to Meja-Orize, the army
15 stopped the convoy and ordered the people to go and stay in different
16 houses? Did that happen?
17 A. Yes. Yes. That happened after we'd spent a whole week on the
18 meadow. Then they ordered us to leave in the direction of Meja, just
19 before you get to Gjakove. And then they returned us once again to
20 Korenica. And at that moment, they said go and take up shelter in
21 different houses. So I went with my family to the house of Prend Markaj
22 and spent the time there from the 27th of April, around the 27th of April.
23 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
24 Q. All right. But even for this first part, where Mr. May says there
25 is no difference or discrepancy with respect to what you said, that you
1 remained in the field for a week, take a look at this penultimate
2 paragraph on page 2. "We got into tractors and cars and started out
3 towards Korenica. When we arrived in Korenica, the army and police
4 ordered the younger people, women and children, to stay out in the field
5 and the elderly and sick were sent to houses in the village. I was one of
6 the ones that we had to stay in the meadow. At night we were allowed to
7 go in the house."
8 So were you in the field, a meadow, for a week or were you outside
9 during the day and went to a house to sleep in at night? Is that right?
10 Because that's what it says here. So which of the two is correct?
11 JUDGE MAY: They could both be correct.
12 Did you spend the night in a house, Ms. Dedaj?
13 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes. During the whole week, in the
14 daytime we spent the time on the field whereas in the evening, we all went
15 into a house, all the village of Guska. Just in the evening, during the
17 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. All right. Now, tell me this: In the statement to the
19 International Crisis Group, you claim that during the time you were in
20 Korenica, you spent your time in the houses of Prend and Marko Markaj,
21 whereas in the statement which you gave to these investigators here, you
22 say that you spent the time in the house of Prend Markaj. Now, tell me,
23 who were you staying with in Korenica? Which is it?
24 A. In the house of Marjan Markaj, we spent the evenings. That was
25 during the week that we spent on the field. All of Guska was there.
1 During the night, we spent in that house. Whereas a week later, from the
2 5th of April on, when we returned there, up to the 27th, we spent our time
3 in the house of Prend Markaj. Whereas the house of Marjan Markaj, we were
4 only there in the evening for one week.
5 Q. And are you related to the Markaj family at all?
6 A. You mean my family?
7 Q. Are they relations of yours? That's what I asked you.
8 A. No.
9 Q. And did all the members of your family put up at Prend Markaj's
11 JUDGE MAY: Well, really, Mr. Milosevic, this witness deals with
12 important events. These are trivial questions which you are asking. I
13 remind you, too, that your time is limited.
14 THE ACCUSED: It seems to me, Mr. May, that the main question here
15 is time.
16 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
17 Q. In your statement on page 3, paragraph 4, you say that from a
18 distance of 20 metres, you heard shots, and that when you looked behind
19 you, you saw men lying down on the ground. Is that right?
20 A. Yes. Once -- they ordered us to get out of our houses, and the
21 men remained there, whereas the women and children, we went out onto the
22 street, 20 metres away. We heard a volley of firing, shooting. And when
23 we got away, 20 metres away, there was another volley of shooting. And I
24 looked around to find out what had happened with my father and my uncle
25 and all the rest who we had left behind us, the nine men behind us in the
1 courtyard. They were all on the ground, and I'm sure that they were --
2 that they'd been murdered. But you would know that better than I do.
3 They left us without parents, without my uncle, without anybody.
4 Q. All right. However, in the statement you gave to the
5 International Crisis Group, you say that when you turned round, you saw
6 men falling down. You saw the men fall down. Now, which is true; did you
7 see them as they were falling or did you see them when they were actually
8 lying down, when they were on the ground?
9 A. I saw them lying on the ground, merely stretched out on the
10 ground. We -- they were asking for money. They were beating us and
11 asking for jewellery, and when we turned our heads back, we could see them
12 lying on the ground and had seen what had happened to them. They were
13 not --
14 Q. All right. You then say that when you turned round, you saw the
15 soldiers who were still shooting but not towards the bodies. That's what
16 you say. "I saw the soldiers who were still shooting but not towards the
17 bodies." So what were the soldiers firing at then?
18 A. While we were in the yard until we went out, they were always
19 firing in the yard. They were firing into the air always. But let me say
20 once again, because when we went, we went no more than 20 metres away.
21 They fired at them directly, and they were lying on the ground, and we saw
22 them lying on the ground.
23 Q. And tell me, what position were the soldiers in when you saw them
25 A. They were standing up and firing straight ahead.
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 Q. And tell me, where are your relatives buried?
2 A. We found -- we found only three of them, only three members of the
3 Dedaj family. The others have disappeared. We don't know where they are.
4 That's my father, uncles. And there were 12 members of the Dedaj family
5 missing. We only found three; Mush, Gjok, and one other. And we found
6 them burnt in the house where they were. It was the house of the Berisha
7 family in Korenica.
8 Q. Were these three in the group that you described a moment ago?
9 A. No. They were -- they were not in the house where my -- they were
10 staying with a different family in Korenica.
11 Q. And where is your father buried?
12 A. I have not found my father. He has vanished. I don't know what
13 happened to him now for three years. We merely left them there on 27th of
14 April and have heard no more of them. They have disappeared.
15 Q. All right. Now, who were these people who you say were killed 20
16 metres away from you? I understood you to be speaking about your father
17 and your family. So who were these people, then, the people you claim
18 were killed by the soldiers when you were 20 metres away with your back
19 turned towards them? Did you know these people?
20 A. These people were my father, my uncle, and my cousin aged 16, and
21 six other members of the family who had been standing with the Markajs,
22 and Pjeter. They were members of my family who we left behind in the
23 yard. But I don't know any more. I merely saw them being shot at and
24 lying on the ground, but we have never found the bodies, and we don't know
25 what happened to them. We haven't found the bodies or anything. They
1 have just disappeared.
2 And you yourself know very well, because you did this. There's
3 nothing more I have to explain.
4 Q. All right. Tell me, did anybody survive this event that you've
6 A. Only one. Only women and children. Only we survived. The men
7 who were -- stayed behind in Korenica, nobody knows what's happened to
8 them. There were 500 people, Meja, Korenica, Guska, all missing.
9 Q. All right. Tell me, please, how come in the statement that you
10 gave to the International Crisis Group you say that Anton Dedaj, 31 years
11 old, survived this event? Is that true or is that not true?
12 A. Yes, it's true. He was staying with another family from Korenica,
13 and he had luck and he survived. He was not where I was and my father and
14 uncle were. He was not in that house.
15 Q. All right. How did you know that he survived when you left
16 Korenica and when you joined the convoy?
17 A. I knew that when we went out into the convoy, we -- we all formed
18 a convoy, and this one who survived, he was with us. He was the only one.
19 Q. All right. Did he give a statement to the investigators or to the
20 members of the International Crisis Group? Do you know that?
21 A. No.
22 Q. Where is he now?
23 A. He's living normally in Guska with us. My cousin, Anton Dedaj.
24 Q. All right. Anton Dedaj. And the statement that you gave you the
25 investigators, you do not mention him at all. Why?
1 A. Well, I don't know. There is no pen that can describe the events
2 that have been -- that I've been through. I wrote about a lot. I have
3 talked about a lot. But this one survived.
4 Q. Was there any fighting between the KLA and the members of the army
5 and police?
6 JUDGE MAY: Where? In what context?
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I am asking the witness, Mr. May, in
9 the context of the events that she has been testifying about.
10 JUDGE MAY: In Korenica at the time, or wherever it was that her
11 father was killed, are you suggesting there was fighting there?
12 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. May, I put the question very
13 clearly to the witness: Was there any fighting between the KLA and the
14 army and the police?
15 JUDGE MAY: You did not. Throughout the time that she has
16 described; is that what you're asking? You ought to clarify -- you ought
17 to clarify your questions.
18 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] When I carry out my
19 cross-examination, can I reach my point in a few questions or do I have to
20 explain it to you in advance? Is that my duty in terms of your job?
21 JUDGE MAY: Your duty is to ask questions which are clear for the
22 witness to answer. If you do not do that, you will be stopped. It's not
23 fair on the witness, and it's not fair for the Court if you don't clarify
24 what you mean, and you will be asked to do so.
25 Ms. Dedaj, you've in fact answered the question. You're being
1 asked if there was fighting.
2 Now, deal with it in this way: First of all, at the time that
3 this execution which you've described took place, which included your
4 father, was there any fighting with the KLA at the time?
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. I never saw the KLA. There was
6 no KLA of any kind.
7 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
8 Q. All right. Did somebody shoot at you as you were leaving
10 A. At us women and children while we were walking, do you mean?
11 Q. Well, you claim that there was shooting all around. That's what
12 it says on page 3, paragraph 5. "There was shooting all round." So I
13 assume that since there was shooting all round, that there was some
14 fighting going on. I am asking you whether somebody shot at you too
15 because there was shooting all around you.
16 So was there fighting in Korenica? Because you say: "There was
17 shooting all around us."
18 A. No. There was no fighting between anybody, but there was always
19 shooting, uninterrupted, all along the road until we reached Gjakove.
20 There was always shooting. There were houses burning. The meadows were
21 full, the roads were full of men with bandannas, criminals. It was
23 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Milosevic, you've got time for one more question.
24 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Do you know anyone who was a member of the KLA?
1 A. No, I don't know anybody.
2 JUDGE MAY: Yes. Mr. Wladimiroff, do you have any questions of
3 this witness?
4 No. No more questions.
5 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I have an objection of an
6 administrative nature, please.
7 JUDGE MAY: Yes.
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] While responding to my questions,
9 the witness said that her mother and aunt, whoever, did not attend when
10 she gave her statements to your investigators, that she was by herself.
11 But on the first page of the statement, it says, where all the names of
12 all persons who attended the interview, it says, "Ana Dedaj, mother of the
14 JUDGE MAY: Yes.
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] So either your official did not
16 record the truth or the witness did not say the truth. I wish to draw
17 your attention to that, notably --
18 JUDGE MAY: Yes. You've done that.
19 Ms. Romano, have you any questions?
20 MS. ROMANO: Not for the witness, Your Honour. I just would like
21 to clarify and to point out for Your Honours that, contrary to what Mr.
22 Milosevic said, that the witness never mentioned Anton Dedaj in her
23 statement, if Your Honours can see at page 4 of the English version, she
24 makes -- she mentions at the second paragraph that: "My uncle Anton Dedaj
25 was released and joined us."
1 JUDGE MAY: Yes. Thank you.
2 MS. ROMANO: No further questions.
3 JUDGE MAY: Ms. Dedaj, that concludes your evidence. Thank you
4 for coming to the International Tribunal to give it. You are free to go.
5 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you for inviting me.
6 [The witness withdrew]
7 JUDGE MAY: Yes, Mr. Milosevic.
8 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] What Ms. Romano explained just now
9 relates to subsequent events, when they were stopped on the road, whereas
10 my question was who had survived. So these are two completely different
11 things, and they pertain to completely different points in time.
12 JUDGE MAY: We can read the statements.
13 Can we have the next witness, please.
14 MR. SAXON: Good morning, Your Honours. The Prosecution will call
15 Ms. Merfidete Selmani. While we're waiting for the witness, I would just
16 like to point out that Ms. Selmani's evidence will be relevant to pages 9
17 and 10 in the Kosovo Atlas. And this next witness will also be testifying
18 related to the incidents described in paragraph 66i of the indictment.
19 JUDGE MAY: Let's just have the witness, please.
20 [The witness entered court]
21 JUDGE MAY: Yes. Let the witness take the declaration.
22 WITNESS: MERFIDETE SELMANI
23 [Witness answered through interpreter]
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I solemnly declare that I will speak
25 the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
1 JUDGE MAY: Yes. If you'd like to take a seat.
2 Examined by Mr. Saxon:
3 Q. Miss, is your name Merfidete Selmani?
4 A. Yes.
5 Q. Ms. Selmani, were you born on the 3rd of April, 1983?
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Were you born in the village of Dobros in the municipality of
8 Gjakove in Kosova?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. Is the village of Dobros about ten kilometres to the north-west of
11 the city of Gjakove?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. On the 7th of July, 2001, did you give a statement to a member of
14 the Office of the Prosecutor about the events that you witnessed and your
15 experiences in Kosovo during 1999?
16 A. Yes.
17 Q. On the 14th of March of this year, 2002, in Gjakove, did you
18 provide a short addendum to your statement of 7 July 2001?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. And also on the 14th of March, 2002, in Gjakove, were you provided
21 with a copy of the statement that you previously gave and a copy of the
22 addendum in the Albanian language in the presence of a representative of
23 the Office of the Prosecutor and a presiding officer appointed by the
24 Registrar of this Tribunal?
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. And at that time, were you able to confirm that the copy of the
2 statement and the addendum were true and correct?
3 A. Yes.
4 MR. SAXON: Your Honours, I'm going to ask now that Ms. Selmani's
5 statement provided under Rule 92 bis be distributed to yourselves, to the
6 accused, and to the amici, and provided with an exhibit number, but I'm
7 not going to request right at this moment that it be admitted because
8 there are a few errors I would like to clarify with the witness.
9 JUDGE MAY: We have in fact got copies.
10 MR. SAXON: Very well. Perhaps if a copy of the Albanian version,
11 after it's marked, could be placed in front of the witness.
12 THE REGISTRAR: Document will be marked 265.
13 MR. SAXON:
14 Q. Ms. Selmani, last Friday, 12th of July, while speaking with myself
15 and other members of the Office of the Prosecutor, did you become aware
16 that there were a few errors in your statement?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Now, myself and the Judges are looking at the English version of
19 your statement, and on page 3 of the English version - and it's the same
20 page in the Serbian version - you describe how your family fled your home
21 and joined a convoy on the 14th of April, 1999. And in the third full
22 paragraph on that page, you say in your statement the following: "It was
23 a big convoy. We were in the middle, and we could not see the two ends."
24 And then there is a sentence that says, in English: "Police Pinzgauer,
25 dark blue vehicles, were among the convoy. They would drive every four,
1 five metres in the middle of the road."
2 My question for you, Ms. Selmani, is this: Were the police
3 Pinzgauers driving every four or five metres in the middle of the road?
4 A. No. Pinzgauers couldn't drive every four or five metres, but
5 there were -- there were tractors in the convoy.
6 Q. And where, if --
7 A. The Pinzgauers were distributed among every four or five tractors.
8 Q. All right. So just so that I'm clear, the Pinzgauers were amongst
9 the convoy. Every four or five tractors, there was a Pinzgauer?
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. So should that sentence on page 3 actually read: "Police
12 Pinzgauers, dark blue vehicles, were among the convoy. They were driving
13 in the middle of the convoy about every four or five tractors"? Would
14 that be correct?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. Ms. Selmani, in the very next paragraph on the same page, the
17 first sentence begins with the following: "I have not heard the police
18 nor the soldiers cursing at the refugees."
19 On that day when you were in the convoy, were the refugees
20 verbally mistreated by the police and soldiers as the convoy passed them
22 A. I don't know about the others, but I didn't hear. But when I was
23 with my family, there were -- there was cursing and mishandling in the
24 column of refugees, yes.
25 Q. Were these statements or cursing made by the police or the
1 soldiers to the refugees? Just yes or no.
2 A. The army and the police, both of them.
3 Q. What kinds of things did the police and the soldiers say as you
4 passed them by?
5 A. They said: "This is not your place. This is Serbia. Your place
6 is in Albania. Here, this is our country, and we're staying here because
7 this is Serbia."
8 Q. Ms. Selmani, do you understand the Serbian language?
9 A. No.
10 Q. Then how did you know what the police and soldiers were saying to
11 the refugees or to you and your family as you passed them by?
12 A. There were people, older people near me, with me, and they could
13 understand Serbian and they told me what they were saying.
14 Q. All right. So should that line on page 3, in the fourth paragraph
15 of your statement actually read: "The police and soldiers verbally
16 harassed the refugees"?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. Ms. Selmani, on the next page of your statement, page 4, in the
19 third full paragraph, you describe how your family stopped for the day on
20 the 14th of April, 1999, in a place called Bistrazin after several
21 tractors were truck by bombs.
22 In the next paragraph - and this is the same page and the same
23 paragraph in the Serbian version - your statement says: "The next day,
24 between 8.00 and 8.30, I saw four men wearing civilian clothes, with a big
25 video camera." Is that line correct?
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 A. No.
2 Q. When did those men with the video camera arrive, Ms. Selmani?
3 A. They arrived on the same day, on the 14th of April, in the
5 Q. So should that paragraph --
6 JUDGE MAY: I think, Mr. Saxon, you must let the witness describe
7 what the statement should say rather than you putting it into words.
8 MR. SAXON: Very well, Your Honour.
9 Q. On the same page of your statement, in the very last paragraph,
10 the paragraph begins: "At about 3.00 or 3.30 hours, we moved back to the
11 village with a tractor."
12 When did you and your family return to your village?
13 A. We returned to the village the next day at 8.00 p.m., around 8.00
14 in the evening.
15 Q. All right.
16 MR. SAXON: Your Honour, with those corrections, I will enter that
17 statement into evidence under Rule 92 bis.
18 JUDGE MAY: Very well. We'll have the exhibit number that it's
19 got already.
20 THE REGISTRAR: Prosecution Exhibit 265.
21 MS. ROMANO: Your Honour, Merfidete Selmani is a Kosovo Albanian
22 Muslim woman who was 16 years old when the events relevant to this
23 indictment occurred. She describes how she and her relatives fled their
24 village of Dobros for the first time in August 1998 when Serb forces
25 entered the village. Although one of Ms. Selmani's brothers, Shpend
1 Selmani, was a member of the KLA at this time, he quit the KLA one week
2 later. Eventually, Ms. Selmani reached the city of Gjakove, where she
3 stayed with relatives until late October 1998 when she returned to the
4 village of Dobros. Between October 1998 and April 1999, Ms. Selmani
5 noticed tanks and armoured vehicles patrolling the area around Dobros.
6 Ms. Selmani explains how on the 14th of April, 1999, Serbian
7 soldiers entered her village. Other villagers began to flee, and
8 Ms. Selmani and her family joined a long convoy heading towards the
9 direction of the village of Meja and the city of Gjakove. Dark blue
10 police vehicles were interspersed among the convoy. VJ soldiers were
11 deployed along the road. Although Ms. Selmani does not speak Serbian, a
12 person travelling with her understood the Serbian language and told her
13 that the police and soldiers were yelling at the people in the convoy,
14 saying things like, "This is Serbia."
15 After the convoy had passed the village of Meja, Ms. Selmani heard
16 a loud explosion from the direction of Meja. Eventually, Ms. Selmani
17 learned that bombs dropped from the air had struck a house in Meja. Her
18 convoy continued on and, after it had passed the city of Gjakove, near the
19 bridge at Bistrazin, Ms. Selmani heard a loud explosion and saw smoke
20 coming from the part of the convoy that was in front of her. When
21 Ms. Selmani and her family reached the place of the explosion, she saw
22 dead bodies and realised that tractors had been hit by bombs dropped from
23 the air. Ms. Selmani observed two white planes flying over the area.
24 Serb police arrived and told the people in the convoy that if they
25 wanted to continue towards Albania, the police would not protect them.
1 Ms. Selmani and her family decided to spend the night in a field close to
2 where the bombs had fell. At one point, Ms. Selmani saw a small child
3 sitting in the road, crying, close to a trailer that was still burning
4 from the explosion of the bombs. Ms. Selmani watched as two men in
5 uniform threw this child onto the burning trailer.
6 That same evening, four men dressed in civilian clothes arrived
7 with a video camera. These men spoke in the Serbian language, and they
8 recorded the scene with the destroyed tractors and the bodies of persons
9 who died in the explosion. The following morning, Ms. Selmani and her
10 family returned to their home in Dobros.
11 Early in the morning of 27 April 1999, Ms. Selmani saw Serb
12 policemen beating one of her relatives and another neighbour with rifle
13 butts. Ms. Selmani returned to her home and warned the young men there to
14 run away. Ms. Selmani's brother Shpend and a number of her male cousins
15 ran to hide in the woods near Dobros. Ms. Selmani and the rest of her
16 family joined a long convoy of people fleeing Dobros and moving in the
17 direction of Meja and Gjakove.
18 Serb policemen and soldiers were deployed along the route of the
19 convoy. At one point, shooting was heard from the direction of the woods,
20 and the group of young men ran out of the woods and got on board the
21 Selmani family's tractor. When the convoy reached the village of Madanaj,
22 Ms. Selmani's father gave her his identity card and other papers with
23 telephone numbers. He told Ms. Selmani that he didn't know what would
24 happen to him.
25 Before arriving in the village of Meja, the Selmani family passed
1 an Albanian policeman who they knew named Fazli Myrtaj. Mr. Myrtaj was
2 known to be close to the Serb authorities. Mr. Myrtaj told the Selmanis
3 that nothing was happening and that his tractor had broken down.
4 Just before reaching the village of Meja at about noon on the 27th
5 of April, Ms. Selmani saw Serb policemen at a checkpoint at the foot of a
6 hill close to a meadow. An elderly relative, Bajram Selmani, told
7 Ms. Selmani and her family that his son had been ordered to leave the
8 convoy and was detained in the meadow. When Bajram Selmani questioned
9 another Albanian policeman, Muharrem Jakupi, about what was happening to
10 his son, Muharrem Jakupi struck Bajram Selmani with his rifle butt and
11 injured his jaw.
12 When Ms. Selmani and her family reached the police checkpoint, two
13 policemen ordered a number of men off of her family's tractor and the
14 tractor in front of it. I wouldn't read all the names in the summary, but
15 these men included Ms. Selmani's father, Zenun Selmani, and Ms. Selmani's
16 brother Shpend Selmani.
17 As the men ran up a hill towards the meadow, Ms. Selmani saw
18 policemen beating them with rifle butts. Once the men reached the field,
19 they were forced to sit in a squatting position. Approximately 80 men
20 were already in the meadow and Ms. Selmani recognised several of them.
21 Ms. Selmani never saw any of these men alive again. After the war,
22 Ms. Selmani saw the body of Sherif Selmani whose body was discovered in
24 The Serb forces ordered Ms. Selmani and the remainder of her
25 family to continue. At about 12.30 p.m., the convoy reached the village
1 of Orize, and there Serb forces ordered certain persons in the convoy to
2 collect money from the other Kosovo Albanians and hand it over to the
4 While in Orize, Ms. Selmani saw two policemen and two other men
5 with masks take a group of men dressed in civilian clothes behind a
6 school. After the group of men disappeared behind the school, Ms. Selmani
7 heard a number of gunshots.
8 As the convoy proceeded towards Gjakove, Ms. Selmani saw policemen
9 and soldiers deployed along the road. These forces cursed the people in
10 the convoy as they passed by. At one point, the Selmani family tractor
11 nearly hit a police vehicle. When the Selmanis told the policeman in this
12 vehicle that their relatives had been kidnapped in Meja, the policeman
13 told them not to worry, after their identities were checked, the men would
14 be released.
15 When the remaining Selmanis arrived in Prizren, policemen stopped
16 them. Aircraft, which Ms. Selmani believed belonged to NATO, were flying
17 overhead, and the police ordered the Selmanis to wait half an hour for the
18 rest of the convoy. When the convoy finally reached the border with
19 Albania, Serb policemen took identity documents from the people in the
20 convoy. Ms. Selmani crossed the border into Albania at about 7.00 p.m. on
21 the 27th of April, 1999. When she returned to Dobros in June 1999,
22 Ms. Selmani found her home damaged and looted.
23 JUDGE MAY: Yes, Mr. Milosevic.
24 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. May, is this witness a 92 bis
1 JUDGE MAY: Yes.
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, then, according to your
3 ruling, the opposite side, when it's 92 bis, has five minutes, and I had
4 one hour and you cut that down to 45 minutes, yesterday even to 30
5 minutes. It's now 25 minutes, that is to say, five times longer than your
6 ruling stipulates without any warning from you, and I'm sure you're going
7 to caution me even before my time expires, the time allotted to me.
8 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Milosevic, that is true. Let me deal with that.
9 First of all, the Prosecution are entitled to make corrections where
10 that's necessary, or otherwise, the Court could be misled. So they're
11 entitled to do that.
12 I agree that the summary was slightly long. I'm sure the
13 Prosecution will have in mind that they're supposed to do it in five
15 Yes. But there's no prejudice to you. Let's go on.
16 Cross-examined by Mr. Milosevic:
17 Q. [Interpretation] Your brother was a member of the KLA; is that
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. According to what you say, he was deployed in Dobros, that is to
21 say in your own village; right?
22 A. Yes.
23 Q. How many members of the KLA were there in Dobros altogether?
24 A. I don't know.
25 Q. Well, roughly. I assume that your brother wasn't the only one
2 A. I don't know the number.
3 Q. And what duties did your brother have within the KLA?
4 A. The -- my brother didn't carry out any duties to the KLA but
5 merely defended his own family.
6 Q. He had a uniform in the house and weapons too; right?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. In August 1998, with other members of your family, you were in the
9 cellar of your house when, from your brother Shpend -- by your brother
10 Shpend you were informed that there were Serb forces in the village, as
11 you yourself say. Now, since when was your brother Shpend a member of the
13 A. My brother had been a member of the KLA for a week. And I don't
14 know what function he had and what he did. And later he handed in his gun
15 and his uniform and lived a family life.
16 Q. The KLA had positions in Smoljica; right?
17 A. I don't know.
18 Q. Well, you mention that in your statement. How come you don't know
19 that now?
20 A. I don't know where they had their positions, whether in Smolica or
21 some other place.
22 Q. Well, you state that you knew that the KLA at that time left its
23 positions in Smoljica. How did you get to know about that and how far is
24 Smoljica from your own village?
25 JUDGE MAY: Let's just find this in the statement. Whereabouts is
1 it in the statement, Mr. Milosevic?
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I'll look for it, Mr. May. Just a
4 MR. SAXON: If I can be of assistance, it's on page 2, Your
6 JUDGE MAY: We've in fact got it. What the -- perhaps you can
7 help us with this: What the witness says, and this is in August 1998,
8 what the statement says is that during your fleeing during this period:
9 "I did not see any Serbian forces in the area, but I know that two days
10 before, KLA had abandoned the front line in Smolica."
11 Can you help us about that, as to what happened and what you knew
12 at the time?
13 A. I didn't know anything. I merely heard that they had left.
14 JUDGE MAY: Yes, Mr. Milosevic.
15 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. And do you know that in the village of Smoljica, in May 1998 --
17 or, rather, let's go back a bit. You didn't tell me how far Smoljica was
18 from your own village.
19 A. I don't know.
20 Q. Well, is it the neighbouring village?
21 A. They are adjacent villages, but I don't know how far it is.
22 Q. Well, all right. But do you remember the event in May 1998 when
23 the KLA there waited for a vehicle with a medical team in it, which was
24 following orders from the Republic of Serbia and the health ministry and
25 was going around vaccinating the children from poliomyelitis? Do you know
1 about that event?
2 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Milosevic, we don't want a speech now. Do you
3 know anything about this vehicle in May 1998? Any incident involving it?
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No.
5 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. And do you know about another event - because this is the
7 neighbouring village - on the 23rd of May, 1998, the KLA attacked a column
8 of the Yugoslav army precisely in Smoljica? Do you remember that event?
9 A. No. I've never heard of this.
10 Q. So you didn't hear about that. They were shooting from recoilless
11 guns, grenades and so on.
12 JUDGE MAY: She hasn't. There's no point asking these questions.
13 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. And do you know about another event that took place at the end of
15 May, on the 29th of May, 1998, in fact, when in the area of your own
16 village the KLA attacked a column of the army and killed several soldiers,
17 three soldiers, in fact, they killed on that particular day and wounded
18 two others. Do you know about that occurrence?
19 A. No.
20 Q. Do you know about any event --
21 JUDGE MAY: What is the relevance of all this? Mr. Milosevic, she
22 has described the killing of people, and her own brother and father have
23 disappeared, in August 1999 and April 1999. Now, how does it help the
24 Tribunal to know about events in May 1998 in this particular context? A
25 year before. Now, the fact that there may have been events a year before
1 may or may not be relevant to the case as a whole, but this witness knows
2 nothing about it, and it does not assist in any way in dealing with her
3 evidence about what happened to her family when they were expelled. Now,
4 that's the relevant part.
5 Now, I have no doubt that your idea is to try and divert from the
6 evidence - that appears to be the case - to divert from the witness's
7 evidence and to try and point out the various crimes, as you allege,
8 committed by the KLA. But the fact that they -- and you must understand
9 this; the fact that they may have committed crimes does not justify the
10 crimes which are alleged to have occurred in this indictment. And a great
11 deal of time is being wasted by asking witnesses about these matters,
12 about which usually they know nothing.
13 Now, move to a time which is closer to the time with which we are
15 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] It is my mistake, I assume, Mr. May,
16 if I ask a witness coming from a place where major crimes took place, ask
17 whether she knows anything about those crimes.
18 JUDGE MAY: The crimes long before. If the witness says that she
19 doesn't, then there is little point going on through a whole series of
20 them. Now, let's move on.
21 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Well, how will I know whether she
22 knows anything about it or not, Mr. May, unless I ask her?
23 JUDGE MAY: You can put these matters, but you can put them very
24 shortly and not waste all the time which is wasted.
25 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Very well, Mr. May. As far as
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 crimes are concerned, as far as I'm able to gather, the witness here is
2 talking about just one major crime and that was the NATO bombing at the
3 bridge in Bistrazin.
4 JUDGE MAY: You better put that to her. You say it was a NATO
5 bombing; put that to her.
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Of course that is my intention.
7 That is what I want to do, because that is what she describes and it is a
8 crime that is not challenged or in dispute and many people were killed
9 there. And as you don't want me to ask her anything about the activities
10 of the terrorist organisation which, according to her, her brother was a
11 member --
12 JUDGE MAY: Yes. Move on.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Very well. I'll skip over these
14 questions then.
15 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Now, you say that your brother Shpend followed you to Skivijane,
17 went with you, and that after that, he drove himself back to Dobros and
18 that he was wearing civilian clothing and that he had a rifle with him.
19 Now, apart from your brother, as an armed member of the KLA
20 wearing civilian clothing, in your group were there any other KLA members
21 of that kind?
22 A. I don't know.
23 Q. And did you see anybody except your brother with weapons of any
25 A. No, I didn't see anybody.
1 Q. And did you see anybody wearing a KLA uniform?
2 A. No, I didn't see anybody.
3 Q. You go on to say that your brother left the KLA seven days later,
4 that he handed over his weapons and caught up with you in Djakovica and
5 that you stayed there for two months. How do you know that he left the
6 KLA? Did he tell you himself?
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. What did he tell you with respect to his leaving the KLA?
9 A. He knew that when he -- when he came up to the family, I knew that
10 he had -- he had left the KLA and had decided to remain with his family.
11 Q. Did he tell you who he had given his weapon to and whether he gave
12 it up at all, handed it in?
13 A. No, he didn't tell me.
14 Q. All right. Now, you say that the situation in your village was
15 calm and quiet the whole time and that it was even quiet when NATO started
16 bombing Serbia. And then you go on to say that you heard the planes and
17 the flash of the explosions in the area of Cabrata. Do you mean Cabrata
18 in Gjakove? Is that the place you mean?
19 A. Do you mean Cabra?
20 Q. Well, you say Cabra, in the area of Sabrat [phoen] or Cabrat. Is
21 it Sabrat in Djakovica? Are you talking about that place?
22 A. Yes, Cabra is in Gjakove.
23 Q. And when was it bombed? When was Cabrat bombed? When was
24 Djakovica bombed?
25 A. I don't know when Gjakove was bombed, but as far as I remember, on
1 the 25th of March, in the evening, we saw these flashes. And I believe
2 that these flashes came from that direction.
3 Q. All right. In your statement, you go on to speak about the
4 forming of convoys and the departure from the village on the 14th of
5 April, 1999. And then you go on to say that the convoy headed in the
6 direction of Djakovica, and you talk about the airstrikes at the Bistrazin
8 Do you know how many civilians died on that day in the NATO
9 airstrikes at Bistrazin?
10 JUDGE MAY: That presupposes, which is not the evidence the
11 witness has given, that this was a NATO bombardment.
12 Do you know who was responsible for this bombing or not,
13 Ms. Selmani?
14 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, I don't know. We were unable to
15 tell whether it was from -- whether it was NATO or somebody else.
16 JUDGE MAY: So that is the state of the evidence as far as this
17 witness is concerned, Mr. Milosevic. If you've got some other evidence on
18 the point, you can call it before us, but meanwhile, there's no point
19 going on putting to this witness that it was due to NATO.
20 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. May, I think that this really is
21 senseless. Now, in your book, "As Seen As Told" --
22 JUDGE MAY: There's no point arguing about this matter. You've
23 heard what the witness said. If you've got some other evidence on the
24 point, of course you can call it, but I'm not going to allow you to ask
25 questions endlessly about something which witnesses know nothing about.
1 Now, you can ask some other questions if you want, of course.
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. May, I'm not saying this to the
3 witness, I'm saying it to you, because I consider that this is highly
4 improper, because in your book, it says: "Although NATO recognised --
5 acknowledged the bombing, it was only several days later that it took
6 responsibility for the bomb in Bistrazin." And that is what it says in
7 your own book.
8 JUDGE MAY: It may be.
9 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] It is so --
10 JUDGE MAY: It may be. But this witness knows nothing about that.
11 And at the moment, what you're supposed to be doing is asking the witness
12 questions, not arguing the whole time and trying to score points. You can
13 do all that. But what -- all the witness can talk about is what she knows
14 herself, and that is her evidence.
15 Now, we will adjourn now for 20 minutes.
16 Ms. Selmani, during the adjournment, don't speak to anybody about
17 your evidence, please, until it's over, and could you be back in 20
18 minutes' time.
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you.
20 --- Recess taken at 10.30 a.m.
21 --- On resuming at 11.52 a.m.
22 JUDGE MAY: Yes.
23 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
24 Q. Please take a look at these three photographs. Is this the scene
25 that you saw?
1 JUDGE MAY: You're putting that to the witness, are you?
2 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Yes. I'd like to have it put on the
3 overhead projector as well.
4 JUDGE MAY: Yes, you can do that. Yes.
5 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. Please take a look at these three photographs. Are these the
7 scenes that you saw? These are photographs of the NATO bombing of the
8 convoy by Bistrazin.
9 A. I can see these photographs very well, but I don't remember. But
10 where they were, I don't know.
11 Q. Please show the other photograph as well.
12 A. It's the same here; I don't remember.
13 JUDGE MAY: And the third one.
14 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] All right.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Also here; I don't remember.
16 JUDGE MAY: Very well. If they could be --
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Could you please return that to me.
18 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
19 Q. Do you know, since you were there and you're from the municipality
20 of Djakovica, do you know that on the next day, the investigating judge
21 established and made public that 69 bodies of persons killed were found,
22 mainly old people and children. Are you aware of that?
23 A. No. I don't know.
24 Q. And do you know also that 43 wounded persons were brought to the
25 Djakovica hospital and Ali Tolaj [phoen], an Albanian surgeon, said that
1 the wounded had succumbed to their wounds as a consequence of the
2 explosion. Are you aware of what?
3 A. I'm not. I am not aware of what happened, where they carried them
4 and where they took them and what happened to these bodies.
5 Q. All right. After that event, you went towards Albania; is that
7 A. No.
8 Q. Where did you go after that event?
9 A. That night, we slept there in those meadows, and 8.00 the next
10 evening we reached home, we returned back home.
11 Q. And how long did you stay at home?
12 A. We stayed at home until the 27th of April.
13 Q. All right. So on the next day, when you went back to your
14 village, did anybody stop you from doing that; the army, the police,
16 A. I didn't understand that. Excuse me, can you repeat the question
18 Q. After this event, you say that you spent the night outdoors, and
19 the next day you decided to go back home. Did you have any problems in
20 terms of returning home?
21 A. No. There was no problem in going home because, of course, they
22 had decided to eliminate all the men in our house on 27th of April, and
23 that is what happened in the end.
24 Q. Who decided to liquidate your men?
25 A. I don't know. You know better than I do. You know who did it.
1 Q. All right. I didn't see from your statement that your men were
2 liquidated. On the basis of what are you claiming that?
3 JUDGE MAY: That, in fact, was the question which you put,
4 Mr. Milosevic. So you may be confusing the witness. The word
5 "liquidated" was your word.
6 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Oh, no. That's the word I heard in
7 the interpretation, Mr. May, and I used it. It is not my word, no. It is
8 the word that reached me through the Serbian interpretation. Everybody
9 can hear that, everybody who is listening to the Serbian interpretation.
10 JUDGE MAY: Let us move on.
11 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
12 Q. You speak about the event of the 27th of April, 1999. That is on
13 page 03031882, and this is the event dated the 27th of April, your
14 brother, Shpend, and Jonuz, Baki, Burim, and Nexhat Selmani, your
15 relatives, and Nijazi and Zenun and a certain Ismet went to hide in the
16 woods. That's what you say here. Is that right?
17 A. Yes.
18 Q. And now, please answer the following question: In addition to
19 your brother Shpend, these persons that you enumerated, were they also
20 members of the KLA?
21 A. They were not members of the KLA. They were in civilian clothes,
22 unarmed. And when I went out, I saw them beating my uncle with rifle
23 butts, and I turned, and out of fear that such a thing could happen to
24 them, I --
25 Q. I don't understand. Who beat your uncle when you went out?
1 A. It was my uncle and nephew who were beaten by four policemen, four
2 Serbian policemen. It was not my uncle on my father's side but on my
3 mother's side.
4 Q. All right. I heard uncle on the father's side in the
5 interpretation, and that's why I used that word when speaking myself.
6 I asked you about the group in which your brother was and that
7 went into the woods on the 27th of April. You claim that all of them were
8 civilians, that all of them were unarmed. Only your brother was a member
9 of the KLA. The rest were not members of the KLA. That's what you say.
10 And now, further on, you say that in the woods there was shooting
11 and that your father went to the woods to find the young men who had fled
12 from your home.
13 My question is the following: Who was shooting at who in the
14 woods? Was there some fighting going on in the woods between the army and
15 the KLA?
16 A. These people who went out into the woods were unarmed, and the
17 Serbian police and army fired at them. If they had had weapons, they
18 would have fought, and they wouldn't have come out of the woods alone.
19 But they came out of the woods and joined the convoy with the members of
20 their families.
21 Q. All right. You say that these young men got out of the woods,
22 they joined the convoy. I understood from what your statement says that
23 they joined you on your tractor and that your father was walking alongside
24 the tractor. How did they change their decision? First they went into
25 the woods to seek shelter there and then they returned to join you. Did
1 they tell you why they changed their minds?
2 A. Because they had been chased there by the Serbian army and police,
3 and they were forced to get out of the woods to join the convoy.
4 Q. Tell me, please, since they were youngish people -- at any rate,
5 they were much younger than your father; right?
6 A. Yes. It was Nexhat, 15 years old, and he has now disappeared. He
7 vanished at Meja on the 27th of April, and nothing knows -- nobody knows
8 what happened to him.
9 Q. And tell me, since they were younger and they were on the tractor
10 and you say that your father walked by the tractor, why were they on the
11 tractor and your father, who is older than they are, walked by the
12 tractor? Is there a reason for that?
13 A. My father was not so old that he couldn't walk. And there were so
14 many people, civilians, in the convoy that a tractor could not hold the
15 entire family and some people had to walk alongside and some travelled on
16 the tractor.
17 Q. Further on, you say that at the police checkpoint, 18 persons,
18 including your father and your brother Shpend, were kept there, or,
19 rather, they were ordered to disembark from the tractor, and then you
20 mention their names; is that right?
21 A. That's the truth.
22 Q. All right. And then you say that the International Red Cross
23 Committee has registered them as missing persons. Do you allow for the
24 possibility that, after having been identified and after having been
25 checked out, they were released and that, after that, they joined the KLA
2 A. No, that's not possible. We reported them to the Red Cross as
3 missing persons, but we don't know what happened to them, where they are,
4 whether they're alive or dead or where they're being kept.
5 Q. On page 03031884, in the last paragraph: "I saw that the
6 policemen near a place Tyrbe," or Trbe - I don't know how you pronounce it
7 - "talked to you, said to you that you should not be afraid for them
8 because they would be released once their identity is established." So do
9 you allow for the possibility that later they joined the KLA or perhaps
10 they were killed in the bombing?
11 JUDGE MAY: She said no in answer to that question, and she can't
12 speculate any further.
13 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] All right.
14 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
15 Q. You mention the village of Orize and what happened there when you
16 saw 15 men and two policemen. And then you say, I'm quoting you: "I did
17 not see these 15 men being shot at, but I think they were killed."
18 Who were these 15 men? Do you know them?
19 A. No.
20 Q. And on the basis of what do you think that they were killed,
21 although you yourself say that no one was shooting at them.
22 A. I didn't say that they didn't fire at them, because I heard the
23 gunshots. But you couldn't see them. And still today, their relatives
24 are looking for them as missing persons. They don't know what's happened
25 to them.
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 Q. All right. In connection with what you said, that in Bistrazin
2 the next day, you saw four civilians with a big video camera who were
3 recording scenes there, did they talk to someone as well?
4 A. No. I heard them speaking Serbian among themselves, but I didn't
5 see them talking to anyone else there, no.
6 Q. In your statement, you say that when you returned to your house,
7 you realised that it had not been looted; is that right?
8 A. Could you repeat the question, please? I didn't understand you.
9 I didn't understand what you were saying.
10 Q. When you returned to your house in Dobros, after that event by the
11 place called Bistrazin, you released that your house had not been looted;
12 is that right?
13 A. My house hadn't been burnt, but it had -- but the other houses had
14 suffered. They were on fire and there was smoke rising from them.
15 Q. All right. I'm asking you whether your house had been looted.
16 A. Yes, it was.
17 Q. And why did you write down here that your house had not been
18 looted? Is it in the penultimate line, page 4. "When we arrived in
19 Dobros, our house had been damaged but not looted. The livestock --"
20 JUDGE MAY: It may be there is a misunderstanding about the
21 occasion that she's being asked about.
22 Do you follow that? It may be that you're being asked about the
23 first time, not when you came back from Albania.
24 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] On the 13th of April -- on the 14th
25 of April we're talking about, aren't we?
1 JUDGE MAY: What was the position then, yes. How was the house
2 then when you came back?
3 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It was looted, and it was broken
5 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
6 Q. All right. Do you know anything about who it was that looted all
7 sorts of Albanian houses in Northern Albania where there are no Serbs?
8 A. I didn't understand the question. Sorry.
9 JUDGE MAY: Do you know anything about -- you're being asked about
10 Northern Albania. Do you know anything about that, about the looting of
11 houses there? It may be that you don't.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I don't know, no.
13 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. All right. Tell me about the meeting with the Albanian. You say
15 that Fazli Myrtaj is his name, 65 years old, a local policeman from
16 Sheremet. You don't remember his brother's name; it doesn't really
17 matter. Did you know him from earlier on, this local policeman? Did you
18 know him?
19 A. Yes, but not as a policeman. I knew him just as an individual.
20 Q. And here you mention him as a policeman; is that right?
21 A. He was probably forced to put on a police uniform by the Serbs,
22 Serb forces, and to work for them. But I don't know exactly what purpose
23 was behind it.
24 Q. All right. Do you know any other Albanian who was a local
25 policeman there or only him? Was he the only one?
1 A. I know of this one, but I don't know of any others. I don't
3 Q. All right. You say on page 5: "I know that Mush Jakupi and his
4 sons were local policemen, Albanians. And also from Hila, Djakovica loyal
5 to the Serbian regime. That's what it says here in your statement. Mush
6 Jakupi and his sons. And you say they were loyal to the Serbian regime.
7 How does that correspond to what you've said just now, that they were
8 forced to wear a uniform?
9 A. The sons of Mush Jakupi, that's true. They -- I think they were
10 from Osek. I didn't know them very well. But the older people who had
11 met them said at that time when we were being expelled by Serb forces from
12 our homes, they would expel us from our homes or they would send us back,
13 they would do whatever they wanted, and these persons were known as
14 collaborating with -- as having collaborated with Serb forces at the time.
15 Q. So Albanians who were local policemen, it is your claim that they
16 were the ones who expelled you from your houses and then returned you
17 there; is that right?
18 A. They didn't come personally to expel us from our houses. It was
19 military and police -- Serb military and police forces who expelled us.
20 Q. Since you said a short while ago that they expelled you and
21 returned you, they didn't do it personally, they sent the Serb army and
22 the police to do that. Was that their role?
23 A. I don't know.
24 Q. All right. Thank you very much.
25 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Wladimiroff?
1 MR. WLADIMIROFF: No questions, Your Honour.
2 Re-examined by Mr. Saxon:
3 Q. Ms. Selmani, Mr. Milosevic asked you whether you were aware that
4 an investigating judge had established that 69 bodies of persons who were
5 killed at the bridge at Bistrazin were found, and your answer was no.
6 To your knowledge, did any Serb authorities investigate what
7 happened to your father, to your brother, to the other Kosovo Albanian men
8 who disappeared at Meja on the 27th of April?
9 A. They disappeared on the 27th, and we don't know anything about
10 what happened to them. We asked the accused to -- as responsible, about
11 what had happened to them, but we still don't know. We haven't had any
12 information about what happened to them, about where they could be or
13 where they're being held. We've been asking now for years, for a couple
14 of years, to find out what happened to them but we haven't been able to
15 find out anything.
16 Q. Ms. Selmani, the accused asked you whether you thought it was
17 possible that the men who you last saw in that meadow at Meja had been
18 released and joined the KLA or had been killed in the bombing. My
19 question for you is this: On the 27th of April, 1999, as you passed that
20 meadow near Meja and you saw your relatives being beaten as they ran up
21 towards the meadow, and forced to squat down there, did you see or did you
22 hear any bombs falling?
23 A. No.
24 Q. Did you see any KLA soldiers that day?
25 A. No.
1 MR. SAXON: Thank you. I have nothing further.
2 JUDGE MAY: Ms. Selmani, that concludes your evidence. Thank you
3 for coming to the International Tribunal to give it. You are free to go.
4 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you
5 [The witness withdrew]
6 JUDGE MAY: Ms. Romano, before we dealing with the next witness,
7 there is one ruling which I want to give. It concerns the witness Mr.
9 Mr. Ryneveld, yesterday, asked us to consider whether that witness
10 could give evidence by way of Rule 92 bis, that is by way of a written
11 statement. I take it he would have conceded the cross-examination. But
12 in any event, we've considered the matter and, given the nature of his
13 evidence, we do not think it appropriate, and he should be called live.
14 If you would pass that on, please.
15 MS. ROMANO: I will, Your Honour. And the other one -- I think
16 the other witness that was mentioned, Karleusa, he will be taken live.
17 JUDGE MAY: Yes. Very well.
18 MS. ROMANO: Your Honours, the next witness is K31, and I think we
19 have an order for closed session.
20 JUDGE MAY: You have an order for closed session. Unless there
21 are any other matters which should be dealt with in open session, we will
22 go into closed session.
23 MS. ROMANO: Thank you.
24 [Closed session]
13 Pages 8128-8180 redacted - closed session.
5 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.49 p.m.,
6 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 17th day of July,
7 2002, at 9.00 a.m.