Alija Delimustafic Caught On Tape: Bosnian-Muslims Declared War on The JNA -
March 30, 2012

Written by: Andy Wilcoxson


Summary of the July 8, 2010 Hearing In The Radovan Karadzic Trial


The trial of Radovan Karadzic resumed on the 8th of July with the continued testimony of Momcilo Mandic. Mandic was the assistant minister of interior for Bosnia and Herzegovina from 1991 until April 1992. After the outbreak of the conflict, Mr. Mandic was, for a short period, served as a deputy to Mr. Mico Stanisic for the Serbian Ministry of the Interior, before becoming the minister of justice for Republika Srpska on 12 May 1992. From December 1992 to 1994, Mr. Mandic served as the director of the Bureau of Republika Srpska in Belgrade.


Sarajevo Wedding Party Murder Condoned By Muslim Police


Karadzic began his cross-examination by showing the witness minutes from a session of the Presidency of the Socialist Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina held on March 2, 1992.


The presidency was discussing the murder of the father of the bridegroom at a wedding party because he was carrying a Serb flag in the Sarajevo neighborhood of Bascarsija. Karadzic also showed the witness exhibit D385, which was a police report on the crime.


Mandic told the court about the incident saying, "We, from the Crime Prevention Service that I headed, knew who the perpetrator was, Delalic, Rasim, and that he was in a house at Bistrik. However, we were not in a position to arrest him or to take any measures because the Patriotic League and the reserve police force were guarding him. The reserve police from Stari Grad Police Station, headed by Dahic, Ismet, at that point they had between 600 and 1,000 men. Of course, all of them were ethnic Muslims, and that was a major problem."


Karadzic asked the witness, "Do you remember that the killer was treated as a hero and that he appeared very soon on television to explain why he had killed that member of the wedding party?" Mandic responded, "Yes, he was invited to a TV show."


As a result of the killing, and subsequent protection of the killer by the Muslim police, Serbs in Sarajevo erected barricades.


Karadzic showed the witness testimony by former Bosnian interior minister, Alija Delimustafic where he says the barricades in Sarajevo were erected during the night between the 1st and 2nd of March 1992 by "people dissatisfied with the killing of the wedding party member".


Karazic asked, "Did it ever cross our minds that the barricades had been set up because of the referendum, or were they set up because of that killing of the member of the wedding party?"


The witness replied, "There was no doubt in anyone's mind that it was all done over the killing of the bride's father in Bascarsija."


Karadzic noted that, "Prosecution witnesses here have contended that the barricades were erected as our response to the referendum, although this was an all-Bosnia referendum, and this was not the case. There were no barricades elsewhere; only in Sarajevo."


Bosnian Independence Referendum Unlawful


Karadzic asked the witness, "Do you remember that the people's decision at the referendum was never verified at the session of the Assembly of Bosnia and Herzegovina, as required under the Constitution?"


The witness replied, "Under the Constitution, to change the social order of the republic, two-thirds of the population should have voted in favor of that. That is 66 point something per cent.


"According to the results published by the two sides, the turn-out at the referendum had been 64 per cent of the population, so that that legal provision was not met and the referendum could, therefore, not have been constitutionally legal."


He said that the results of the referendum, "had not been tabled on the agenda of the Assembly for verification" and he agreed with Karadzic's suggestion that "the results of the referendum should have been verified at the Assembly session by the Assembly and proclaimed by also a two-thirds majority of all the MPs."


Izetbegovic Regime Declared War On The Yugoslav People's Army


Karadzic showed the witness a document of the BH Presidency (exhibit D392) dated April 4, 1992.


The document stated:  

"The Presidency of the SR BH, at its session held today on the 4th of April, 1992, bearing in mind the complexity of the political and security situation in the republic, concluded:

"1. That in keeping with the decision of the SR BH Presidency of the 3rd of April, 1992
, and its own assessment, a mobilisation be carried out of the territorial defence units of all the municipalities and the city of Sarajevo in the Socialist Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, including communications units.

"2. That it will demand from the responsible organs of the Yugoslav People's Army that the weapons, military equipment and other materiel and technical equipment that were entrusted to them for safekeeping be returned to territorial defence units - municipal and district BH TO staffs.

"3. That a mobilisation be carried out of the entire reserve force of the SR BH police, in keeping with the earlier decisions of the Presidency and Government of the SR BH."


Karadzic asked the witness, "Do you remember that the Serbian part of the Presidency disputed this mobilisation?" And the witness confirmed that "the Serbian members of the Presidency did not participate in these conclusions."


Karadzic asked, "Was this a frightening decision for the entire Serbian people?" And Mandic replied, "It was obvious that Bosnia and Herzegovina was collapsing as a result of all these events, and there was no understanding to be found between members of the government and the Presidency. And under partisan pressure and by importing people from other countries, they tore up the MUP. And I mean the Party of Democratic Action did it."


Mandic confirmed Karadzic's suggestion that "before this mobilisation, an unlawful increase was made to the reserve police force by taking over the unassigned military conscripts, Croats and Muslims, who had not responded to JNA mobilisation call."


Mandic also told the court that, "Sefer Halilovic, an active-duty JNA officer, in the summer of 1991 began to establish and established paramilitary formations called the Patriotic League."


Karadzic asked the witness who the target of the forces being amassed by the Muslims was, and Mandic replied, "The Serbs, Mr. President."


Karadzic showed the witness a document (exhibit D393) from the Bosnian Presidency, four days after they ordered the mobilization, in which they fired the joint chiefs of the Territorial Defense staff: Drago Vukosavljevic, a Serb, and Fikret Jahic, a Muslim, and replaced them with Colonel Hasan Efendic, a Muslim.


Mandic told the court that "Hasan Efendic proclaimed the JNA to be an enemy of Bosnia and Herzegovina. He issued an order to mount obstacles on the roads, to seize JNA weapons, and all the rest that followed."


Karadzic showed the witness a document (exhibit D399) and after examining the document the witness said, "This is an order by the commander of the Territorial Defence Staff of Bosnia-Herzegovina, in which he asks that all the barracks of the Yugoslav People's Army be blocked and that no materiel or personnel can leave them; also, that all roads leading to Serbia or other territories should be blocked and in order to prevent the pullout of the army from the barracks and from specific places. Under 4, combat activities should be launched, attacks on members of the Yugoslav People's Army. In other words, a war should be started."


Karadzic also showed the witness a couple of documents (exhibits D401 and D402) showing the illegal importation of weapons from Arab countries by the Bosnian-Muslim authorities during April of 1992.


The witness agreed with Karadzic's suggestion that "All of these orders and these actions, primarily of Hasan Efendic, naturally resulted in what happened on the 2nd and 3rd of May in Sarajevo, when the army was slaughtered?"


Mandic told the court, "The order to use all available fire-arms against the convoy that was moving down Dobrovoljacka Street was issued by Ejub Ganic. I heard it myself. That is when about 20 young men, age 19 to 21, were killed. They were military conscripts, doing their regular military service. They worked at the command and the communications centre there, and they were going home unarmed. "


The attack happened after their evacuation had that been negotiated and agreed upon with Alija Izetbegovic and General MacKenzie, the UNPROFOR commander for Sarajevo.


Karadzic then turned his attention to a recording (exhibit D403) of a Bosnian Presidency session dated May 6, 1992. Bosnian Interior Minister Alija Delimustafic is speaking and he says, "Both we and his ministry made mistakes, like what Bakir did or like (assistant interior minister) Avdo Hebib, what he did, when he ordered the war to start, people to open fire, occupy barracks. He sent an order to all centres without my knowledge. He declared war. I told him to make a statement in order to observe proper form. He never came to see me again. He doesn't speak to me anymore."


Alija Izetbegovic asks, "What did he do?"


Delimustafic responds, "He declared war on the army. Four points. Signed the dispatch."


At this point Stjepan Kljujic interjects saying, "We have finished the recording. Don't record this." But it got recorded anyway.




A complete transcript of this hearing is available at:


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