PROSECUTOR CALLS FOR JASOVIC DOCUMENTS TO BE REJECTED
The hearing to discuss the admissibility of police documents from Urosevac scheduled for next Wednesday. After Dragan Jasovic, Milosevic called General Bozidar Delic to the witness stand. At the times relevant for the Kosovo indictment, he was the commander of the 549 Motorized Brigade of the VJ, stationed in Prizren and Djakovica
Slobodan Milosevic in the courtroom
Prosecutor Geoffrey Nice today objected to the admission of the Jasovic documents as Slobodan Milosevic's defense exhibits. The documents include several hundred statements made by Kosovo Albanians who were brought to the Urosevac police station in 1998 and 1999 for "preliminary interviews" or who "came forward voluntarily", as the former inspector Jasovic claims, to make statements about the KLA personnel and activities. In the prosecutor's view, the papers "do not meet any of the criteria of admissibility and must be rejected in their entirety."
Milosevic and his assigned counsel, Steven Kay, opposed the prosecutor's motion and the judges scheduled the hearing to discuss the admissibility of the Jasovic documents for Wednesday, 29 June, inviting Nice and Kay to file written arguments on the subject by Monday.
After Dragan Jasovic, Milosevic called General Bozidar Delic to the witness stand. At the times relevant for the Kosovo indictment, he was the commander of the 549 Motorized Brigade of the Yugoslav Army, stationed in Prizren and in Djakovica. Through his testimony, Milosevic will try to challenge the prosecutor's allegations about the "pattern" of conduct of the VJ in Kosovo. According to the prosecution and its witnesses, the "pattern" was for the military to surround and then shell a village, after which the infantry would enter the village, plundering and setting the houses on fire and killing any persons that got in their way or found in the houses. Protected prosecution witness K-41 described how his unit, part of the 549 Motorized Brigade, had done precisely that. In September 2002 he testified about the attack his unit had carried out on the village of Trnje, where he had participated in the liquidation of about fifteen women, children and the elderly in a courtyard. The killings were ordered by Captain Gavrilovic, he said.
At the beginning of his testimony, General Delic spoke about the escalation of terrorism in 1998, about the "Kalashnikov strategy" the KLA used in order to expel all the Serbs and to unite Kosovo with Albania. Milosevic showed several video recordings of KLA units taking oath, of Richard Holbrooke talking to KLA commanders in Junik and the meeting last year of Holbrooke and Wesley Clark with the Albanians who had fought in the KLA during the war and who now were in America. When the judges asked him about the relevance of the tapes, Milosevic responded that they spoke to "the political background of the events and the intervention in Kosovo, justified by the Clinton administration as intervention in the face of an alleged humanitarian disaster."
Although Judge Robinson pointed several times that the Chamber had "already heard enough evidence about the political context of the conflict in Kosovo and the goals, organization and manner of engagement of the KLA", Milosevic continued this line of questioning until the end of the hearing today.
General Delic's testimony will continue tomorrow.
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