The accused has notified the Trial Chamber that he would need a total of 155 hours to cross-examine the first twelve witnesses; the prosecution will take 25 hours for their examination-in chief. If the Trial Chamber grants Karadzic’s request, the examination of April witnesses would not be completed by the Tribunal’s summer recess in the second half of July 2010

Radovan Karadžić u sudnici TribunalaRadovan Karadžić u sudnici Tribunala

On the orders of the Trial Chamber, late last week Radovan Karadzic submitted his estimate of the time he would need to cross-examine prosecution witnesses scheduled to give evidence in April 2010. The prosecution indicated that the examination-in chief of the first twelve witnesses would take a total of 25 hours. Karadzic on the other hand, indicated he intended to cross-examine them for 155 hours.

All 12 witnesses scheduled to give evidence have already testified before the Tribunal at the trials for other crimes in the BH war. At this trial, the witnesses will for the most part give evidence pursuant to rules 92 bis and 92 ter, which allow the prosecution to tender into evidence transcripts of the witnesses’ previous testimony after a brief examination-in chief.

Karadzic plans to take the least time to cross-examine victims or crime-base witnesses for Sanski Most, Pale and Srebrenica. As for the witnesses from the international community, such as Herbert Okun, David Harland or Colm Doyle – whose examination-in chief is scheduled to take from one to four hours – Karadzic asked for 10 to 14 hours. The prosecution intends to examine former prosecution military analyst Richard Philips for just half an hour, while Karadzic asked for 20 hours. A chart of the command structure in the VRS Sarajevo-Romanija Corps authored by Philips was admitted into evidence at the trial of General Stanislav Galic. The accused asked for 20 hours for the cross-examination of his former close associate in the Bosnian Serb political leadership, Momcilo Mandic.

The only witness to testify viva voce, live, will be American historian Robert Donia who will appear before the Tribunal for the thirteenth time. According to the prosecution, Donia’s examination-in chief will be completed in three hours. Karadzic asked for ten times as much time – a total of 30 hours for Donia’s cross-examination.

While he hoped he would complete the cross-examination of some of those witnesses sooner than he expected, Karadzic indicated in his letter to the Chamber that he reserved his right to ask for additional time for some witnesses.

As the Karadzic trial will proceed only three days a week, if the Trial Chamber grants the request of the accused, the examination of April witnesses will not be finished by the Tribunal’s summer recess in the second half of July 2010 and the whole trial would take until 2018 to finish.