PROSECUTOR vs. SLOBODAN MILOŠEVIĆ
WITNESS NAME: Ante Marković
15 January 2004
(extract from transcript, pages 30823 – 30939)
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.05 a.m.
6 WITNESS: ANTE MARKOVIC [Resumed]
7 [Witness answered through interpreter]
8 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Markovic, thank you for returning to continue your
9 evidence. There's no need, of course, to take any formal oath or anything
10 of that sort. You took one earlier. There are three hours left of
11 cross-examination of the accused. We will, of course, have the usual
12 breaks. If at any time you would like to have a brief, do say so, a brief
13 pause, of course just mention it, but we would normally have the first
14 break in about an hour and a half.
15 There will be three hours, as I say, ordered for his
16 cross-examination. There will then be, I trust fairly limited, some
17 questions from the amicus and also from the Prosecution, but we have, we
18 understood, to take this position, that one way or another the evidence
19 will finish today.
20 Yes, Mr. Milosevic.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] May I say something, please? Is it
22 permissible or customary? I owe you an answer to your question and your
23 request regarding where and with whom and how Mr. Milosevic established
24 control over individual people and thus changed their opinion.
25 I thought this question over, though I don't have any original
1 documents with me, but on the basis of my notes and my own memories, I
2 remembered certain instances which I wish to convey to you.
3 The first case is that of Mr. Ivan Stambolic. When the time came
4 for Mr. Ivan Stambolic to be re-elected to his position, Mr. Milosevic
5 spoke to me to the effect that Stambolic should not be proposed for
6 re-election. I discussed the matter with my associates in the government
7 who were from Bosnia-Herzegovina, in the first place with Aco Mitrovic and
8 with Gacic as well. Both of them were of the opinion that Ivan Stambolic
9 was doing so well in his new position that people in the economy,
10 businessmen, have a lot of respect for him and felt that he was doing a
11 very good job.
12 After Mr. Milosevic had spoken to these people and sent a letter
13 to the Federal Executive Council, that is the government, saying that Ivan
14 Stambolic should not be re-elected and that Serbia did not agree with such
15 a suggestion - and this letter was signed by Mr. Milosevic - then both
16 these gentlemen changed their opinion, and both of them started persuading
17 me that we should not allow Ivan Stambolic to be re-elected general
18 manager of the Yugoslav Bank for Reconstruction and Development. In spite
19 of this and in spite of the pressure they made and despite the fact that
20 Ivan Gacic was the person who, at the 8th session of the Central Committee
21 of the League of Communists of Serbia had supported Ivan Stambolic and as
22 a result has lost his position as Secretary-General of the League of
23 Communists of Yugoslavia, regardless, therefore, of the fact that he was a
24 very close friend and associate of Ivan Stambolic, he felt that he should
25 vote against his re-election to the position of general manager of the
1 Yugoslav Bank for International Economic Cooperation.
2 These are the examples that I could recollect. There are others,
3 but perhaps not so convincing that I would be able to explain for you.
4 There's something else that I wanted to add.
5 Mr. Milosevic, as he himself said, came with some old documents
6 from my former office which say and which testify to all the things that I
7 had done during the three years that I was in Belgrade, and he said with
8 satisfaction, "Where did we meet? Let Mr. Markovic tell us." I looked
9 through my notes, and fortunately I managed to find a note saying that we
10 did meet when I had said. I said that it was three or four weeks prior to
11 my departure from Belgrade. I left Belgrade on the 21st of December, and
12 the meeting with Milosevic was on the 21st of November. So that is quite
13 in conformity with what I had said, three or four weeks.
14 Something else that I managed to establish was that there had been
15 another meeting prior to that, that is about a month prior to this
16 meeting, and it had to do with the bombing of the Banski Dvori where
17 Mr. Tudjman, Mesic, and I were. I forgot to mention this in the
18 investigation or in the interview. Mr. Milosevic can check this out as he
19 has the documents. I don't have them. It doesn't say what we discussed,
20 but at least it says when it is that we met.
21 Thank you.
22 JUDGE MAY: Very well. Yes, Mr. Milosevic.
23 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. May. I hope that the
24 time used by Mr. Markovic for his explanations will be subtracted from the
25 time planned for me.
1 JUDGE MAY: Your time begins now. So let us get on with it.
2 Cross-examined by Mr. Milosevic: [Continued]
3 Q. [Interpretation] I must say, however, that this fact about a
4 meeting between you and me on the 21st of November, you didn't see that in
5 the review of your duties but that you found this in some notes you had.
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. So in the review of your duties, in the schedule, this meeting is
8 not mentioned.
9 A. Please look and see whether this meeting took place in November.
10 Q. This was the year 1991, and this is a schedule of your
11 obligations. I don't have that on me any more. I've handed it over.
12 Unfortunately, I didn't make a photocopy, but that doesn't change things.
13 It is quite clear that towards the end of the year, we did not meet.
14 A. It is quite clear that we did meet, and this can be checked from
15 that document. I don't know. The Court has it or the Prosecutor. That
16 can easily be verified that this meeting took place in my office on the
17 21st of November, which is four weeks prior to my departure from Belgrade.
18 Q. Very well. Did you come to see me or did I come to see you?
19 A. No, no. I came to see you, and I think I stayed for about two and
20 a half to three hours.
21 Q. Very well. But that again is different from what you said before,
22 because you say -- you've said that you had come to see me prior to your
23 departure. In fact, you now say it was a month prior to your departure?
24 A. I'm not changing my statement. In my statement I said that I came
25 to see you three or four weeks prior to leaving Belgrade.
1 Q. Very well. Let us continue where we broke off last time. In that
2 brief cross-examination, we covered the facts regarding your
3 responsibility for the war in Slovenia.
4 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Mr. May, the stenographic notes that
5 we reviewed previously, that is the session of the 21st of August,
6 beginning at 11.00 in 1991, the first page ends with 082, ERN number 082.
7 I received it from the opposite side, and these stenographic notes clearly
8 show Mr. Markovic's responsibilities for the war in Slovenia, and could it
9 be tendered into evidence, please?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] May I say anything in that
12 JUDGE MAY: Just one moment. Let's get this document. We'll find
14 Mr. Nice, perhaps you can assist us on that matter. It doesn't
15 appear to have been a document provided already. Yes. We'll get a copy
16 from the accused and see what it is.
17 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I can't give you this copy now.
18 This is the copy that I received from the opposite side. You can get it
19 from them, because I wanted to refer to it again in continuation of my
20 cross-examination with reference to the war in Slovenia.
21 JUDGE MAY: Yes, Mr. Nice.
22 MR. NICE: I may not be able to provide it immediately. I will do
23 my best --
24 JUDGE MAY: Give us the date again, Mr. Milosevic, and give us the
25 details of it.
1 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] It is a session of the Presidency,
2 which was expanded in composition, attended by us from the republics, held
3 on the 21st of August, 1991, and these are stenographic notes, and the
4 first page has the ERN number 00526082. That is the first page, the ERN
5 on the first page. And the last page ends with numbers 204. That is the
6 document that we reviewed last time.
7 I wish to remind you that on the page with the number 244 of these
8 minutes, 00526137, the president of Slovenia at the time, Milan Kucan,
9 says in response to Mr. Markovic: "I don't need to persuade you that you
10 will not find anyone in Slovenia, including these two, that is members of
11 the federal government who will return to the Federal Executive Council
12 and work there." SIV, S-I-V, which means the Federal Executive Council.
13 It is a SIV which is known in Slovenia to have started the war in
15 So that is what we quoted. And why, in addition to other excerpts
16 that I don't have time to go into now because we covered them, but this is
17 the reason why I wish to tender this document into evidence as an exhibit.
18 JUDGE MAY: Just a moment. Let's deal with one thing at a time.
19 Let's deal with the Prosecution. Do you think you can find that in the
21 MR. NICE: We can certainly find it. It won't take very long, and
22 we'll make it available and have it produced.
23 JUDGE MAY: Clearly, if you're going to ask Mr. Markovic any
24 questions, he must have the opportunity of seeing what the document is.
25 Now, the most sensible course - and it may be well that it will be
1 exhibited - the most sensible course may well be to find this document.
2 JUDGE KWON: I find some page numbers the accused referred to are
3 matching with the page numbers of Exhibit 427, tab 6, but if the
4 Prosecution can check it later.
5 JUDGE MAY: Yes. We will do that, and it may well be that we will
6 admit it, but we need first of all to check it.
7 Yes. Yes, Mr. Milosevic.
8 Yes, Mr. Markovic. If you want to add something, you can.
9 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] In any event, Mr. Milosevic
10 extracted a segment from the evolution of relations. Relations from the
11 beginning when I joined the federal government between Slovenia and
12 Serbia, or Serbia and Slovenia, and also between Milosevic and Kucan were
13 extremely tense. In the final analysis, Serbia blocked all goods that
14 were due to come from Bosnia to Serbia long before the war. All economic
15 relations were suspended.
16 Serbia also organised - and that means Milosevic - the visit of a
17 large group of people, most of them highly radical, to go to Bosnia and to
18 organise a rally there, a popular rally, and Slovenia prevented this.
19 There was constant conflict over the problem of Kosovo and what
20 was going on in Kosovo, so that in that context, if you review events and
21 the war in Slovenia, it becomes quite clear that this was only a marginal
22 aspect of what had happened until then as well as what happened after that
23 when the decision was taken to pull out the army from Slovenia, and who
24 took that decision and who immediately agreed with that decision prior to
25 that. And it is absolutely not true that the Federal Executive Council
1 took such a decision. I'm speaking from memory as I don't have the
2 document now. It says clearly that the federal Secretariat for Internal
3 Affairs would organise supervision over those facilities in Slovenia which
4 were in their possession and that to do so they would use units which the
5 army has deployed along the border, border units.
6 The soldiers that were in Slovenia in the so-called Slovenian war,
7 were not in the border barracks but soldiers that came out of their
8 barracks with tanks and cannon. Therefore, someone else had taken the
9 decision to use military force to pull them out of the barracks under full
10 military gear. Such a decision was not taken by the Federal Executive
11 Council nor could it have been taken by it, because if it could, then the
12 federal Presidency would not have tortured itself and had endless meetings
13 over the possibility of using the army. Such permission was never
14 granted. And that is why it was felt that the Presidency was incapable of
15 functioning in such a situation, and that is why efforts were made to
16 topple the Presidency, and even through me to disband that Presidency and
17 to use me to carry out a kind of state coup as proposed by Kadijevic.
18 So what Milosevic is now saying is not right, because when the
19 decision was to be taken to withdraw the army from Slovenia, that decision
20 was in fact taken by the army, Milosevic, and Kucan. The rest of us -- I
21 had no right to vote at the Presidency, but other members of the
22 Presidency were also extremely concerned over what was happening, and from
23 there the army was transferred to Bosnia and Herzegovina.
24 I have to make myself quite clear: I was against the withdrawal
25 of the army. I wanted it to continue to be dispersed throughout the
1 country because it would have less opportunity of committing aggression if
2 it is not concentrated in one place, but this was not in my hands. I
3 couldn't take any such decision. Nowhere is there any possibility
4 envisaged for the federal government to have command over the army. It
5 was only the Presidency that could do that. Who negotiated with Kadijevic
6 in the Presidency for the troops to come out of the barracks, I don't
7 know, but it was never officially reported anywhere.
8 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. Mr. Markovic, that is the whole point. Even the president of the
10 Presidency at the time, Jovic, was not aware of your intervention in
11 Slovenia. So what you're now telling us at great length, quite
12 unnecessarily, is absolutely untrue. And to prove that to you, I will
13 quote from you this same stenographic report. It is on page 247 of that
14 report. The last digits of the ERN number are 6140. And trying to
15 respond to accusations against you by Kucan and others and myself to the
16 effect that you had provoked the war in Slovenia, you even quote from your
17 own decision, and you say yourself: "The Federal Executive Council took a
18 decision on the implementation of federal regulations regarding the state
19 border in Slovenia," et cetera.
20 And then in the next paragraph, you say, and you quote from that
21 decision: "Immediate enforcement of federal regulations will be achieved
22 by the federal Ministry of the Interior in direct cooperation with the
23 federal Secretariat for National Defence so as to engage border units of
24 the JNA to secure the state border at border crossings and in inhabited
25 areas in the border belt."
1 So it was by your decision that you obliged your two federal
2 ministries, the Ministry of the Interior and the Ministry of National
3 Defence, to intervene in Slovenia. No one else knew about it, not even
4 the Presidency of the SFRY.
5 A. That is not so. You read out correctly this segment. The police
6 of Yugoslavia was meant to get the cooperation of border units, those
7 protecting the border and who do not have tanks or cannon but only light
8 weapons, and to carry this out in cooperation with them.
9 In the first place, that was not done. Neither the police nor the
10 border units took part, but those that did take part were tanks and cannon
11 and units that came out of the garrison. There were even units that came
12 from Croatia. There were units from Istria, units from the surroundings
13 of Zagreb. Therefore, someone had taken that decision. These were not
14 border units but military units from several garrisons. We know that even
15 some generals had problems afterwards because they had taken people along
16 a 200-kilometre-long journey to reach Slovenia. No one else could have
17 taken such a decision except the person who had the army under full
18 control. And it was you, Mr. Slobodan Milosevic, that had full control of
19 the army.
20 Q. That is not right, Mr. Ante Markovic. You were the federal Prime
21 Minister. You had the army under your control. And as for communication
22 with the military leadership, in your schedule of responsibilities you can
23 see how many times you met with the military or police leadership in the
24 course of 1991 and how you acted as the most responsible person, as the
25 president of the federal government of SFRY.
1 And as regards what you said about my especially tense
2 relationship --
3 JUDGE MAY: The witness must have the occasion to answer,
4 particularly important points which are made. The witness must have the
5 answer -- chance to answer the allegations.
6 Mr. Markovic, you've heard what the accused alleges. Perhaps you
7 would care to respond, however briefly.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Unfortunately, I do not have all the
9 documents that Mr. Milosevic has, and I am completely in an inferior
10 position because I was unable to get anything from my office whereas he
11 got everything. However, certain things are abundantly clear.
12 If the government had been able to make decisions on how to use
13 the army, then it would have been unnecessary to hold multiple sessions of
14 the Presidency of Yugoslavia and take votes on using the army to calm the
15 situation down in Yugoslavia. The Presidency discussed umpteen times, as
16 well as at the closed sessions of the joint staff, this issue, and if the
17 government had been able to decide on this, nobody would have bothered
18 with the Presidency. So this is a blatant lie.
19 We didn't stand a chance in all this affair. We had no
20 communications with the army. If there had been communication between the
21 government and the army and General Kadijevic who was in charge of the
22 army and as such was accountable to the government, but in actual fact, he
23 as a commander was completely subjected to the Presidency. The Federal
24 Executive Council had nothing to do with it.
25 I repeat, you can take original documents and read them. The only
1 function according to which the army, or in this case General Kadijevic
2 were a member of the army, were in terms of finance and administration.
3 The federal government had no other competence over the army.
4 And I would like to say once again, as far as Slovenia is
5 concerned, units from garrisons with cannons, tanks, and other equipment
6 were used, even units from the environs of Zagreb and from Croatia were
7 used. And the phrasing in the decision of the federal government was that
8 units that were already stationed on the border crossings should be used
9 in cooperation with the police using only light weapons. But none of this
10 was implemented. What was effected was an invasion. Who could have
11 allowed this -- built this?
12 In March 1990 when a huge number of people came out into the
13 streets of Belgrade, over 100.000, to demonstrate against Mr. Milosevic,
14 somebody decided to bring out tanks to stop them. Who was able to
15 sanction this? Everything was done as it was done.
16 Of course, formally Mr. Milosevic did not take this decision, but
17 in actual fact he did. He was behind that, and he was behind what
18 happened in Sarajevo.
19 JUDGE MAY: Just help us with this so we can follow and make sure
20 it's clear, and if you could keep the answers short, please.
21 Did you have any control at all over the army?
22 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No, none.
23 JUDGE MAY: Did you have direct -- any communication with the
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Yes, I did. I said, in
1 administrative terms and financial terms, I did have contact with the
2 army. Everything else was under the command of the Presidency of
4 JUDGE MAY: Were you in a position to get the army to do anything
5 or to ask them to do anything? Were they prepared to do it? Did you have
6 any control over them at all.
7 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] No. No. So help me God, no.
8 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Markovic, what you're saying, is -- would
9 that be confirmed by the constitutional system?
10 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Completely in accordance, in
11 conformity with the constitutional system. Anyway, it's very logical.
12 The army was financed from the budget of Yugoslavia. The budget of
13 Yugoslavia was under the control of the Federal Executive Council.
14 One item of this budget related to the army, and that was
15 practically the only communication between the army and the federal
16 government. There was no command or control communication, no information
17 as to where units were deployed was given to the government, because that
18 was not within our purview. Specialised functions of the army came under
19 the exclusive competence of the Presidency, and the Presidency held many,
20 many sessions to decide where and how the army would be used. All, all of
22 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] May I continue?
23 JUDGE MAY: Yes.
24 MR. MILOSEVIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Well, Mr. Markovic, that is precisely the point. It is not in
12 Blank page inserted to ensure pagination corresponds between the French and
13 English transcripts.
1 dispute that under the constitution only the Presidency of Yugoslavia has
2 the right to command the army, but in the instance of the war in Slovenia,
3 which Kucan himself says was caused by the Federal Executive Council, it
4 is obvious that you had abused and usurped the function of the Prime
5 Minister of Yugoslavia, bypassing the constitution, because you are
6 quoting your own decision in this shorthand notes when you say that: "In
7 the implementation of this decision, the Federal Executive Council will
8 immediately cooperate, directly cooperate with the federal Ministry for