CRIMES AS RESPONSE TO ENEMY CONDUCT
Judge Robinson asked Milosevic several times today if it was his argument that "the crimes alleged in the indictment were committed in response to joint actions by the KLA and NATO." The accused responded that the "actions by Serbian and FRY forces were always a response to the enemy conduct," and that a large number of KLA members were killed in such clashes; the indictment lists those casualties as civilians
Slobodan Milosevic in the courtroom
After eight days of questioning, Slobodan Milosevic today concluded the examination of his defense witness, General Bozidar Delic, by quoting the key counts in the Kosovo indictment, where it is alleged that the Serbian and FRY forces conducted a campaign of terror in the first half of 1999, forcibly expelling hundreds of thousands of Kosovo Albanians, destroying their villages, looting their private property and businesses and killing hundreds of civilians. The witness's reply to every count in the indictment read out to him was the same: nothing of it was true.
General Delic, who commanded the VJ 549 Motorized Brigade at the time – its area of responsibility included the area along the border with Albania – says that the "army protected all the inhabitants of Kosovo, be they Serbs or Albanians," and that the exodus of the Kosovo population in the first half of 1999 was "part of a broader campaign against Serbia and FRY."
According to Milosevic and his witness, the "broader campaign" was conducted jointly by the KLA (or rather, the "Siptar terrorist forces", as the military documents brought to the court by General Delic label them) and NATO. The KLA, as General Delic claims, provided NATO with intelligence about the disposition of the military and police forces in Kosovo, while NATO provided air support for KLA activities. Yugoslav electronic surveillance centers intercepted communications between NATO reconnaissance, combat and command aircraft. According to Delic's documents, they warn not to carry out any missions in a three mile radius around certain points where KLA forces are deployed. The judges asked whether "there are any original notes in addition to the compilations that anyone can interpret as they see fit," to corroborate the claim that these were indeed intercepted communications between NATO forces, but the witness was unable to assist them.
Judge Robinson asked the accused several times if it was his argument that "the crimes alleged in the indictment were committed in response to joint actions by the KLA and NATO." The accused responded that the "actions by Serbian and FRY forces were always a response to the enemy conduct," and that "a large number of KLA members were killed" in such clashes; the indictment lists those casualties as "civilians."
Prosecutor Nice began his cross-examination today trying to obtain some new details about General Delic's military career. The court thus learned that in the course of and after the Dubrovnik operation of the JNA in 1991 and 1992 he was stationed near Dubrovnik, in Cavtat, Croatia. From April until September 1993, he was on a tour of duty in Bosnia and Herzegovina as the chief of staff of a VRS brigade. At the beginning of his testimony, Bozidar Delic said he was originally from Kosovo.
General Delic's cross-examination will continue on Monday, 11 July.
- Case : Milosevic Slobodan - "Kosovo, Croatia and Bosnia"
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- 2005-06-30 MILOSEVIC “ELIMINATES” ONE PROSECUTION WITNESS AFTER ANOTHER
- 2005-07-11 GENERAL DELIC'S DENIALS
- 2005-07-12 GENERAL DELIC: “K-32 IS LYING… BUT I DID ORDER THE SHELLING OF A HOUSE"
- 2005-07-13 “PERFIDIOUS” NICE AND "PREPPED" WITNESSES