UN Tribunal for former Yugoslavia calls on Serbia to give up Mladic

UN Tribunal for former Yugoslavia calls on Serbia to give up Mladic

The Chief Prosecutor for the United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) has called on Serbia to arrest and turn over one of the major figures indicted for genocide by early next month and has noted that two of the three lesser accused who had been hiding in Russia would be transferred soon.

ICTY spokeswoman Florence Hartmann said Prosecutor Carla Del Ponte welcomed recent calls from the United States, the European Union (EU) and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) for Ratko Mladic and Radovan Karadzic, indicted for genocide in Srebrenica, to be arrested before the 10th anniversary of the Dayton Peace Agreement. The pact was agreed on 21 November 1995 and signed in Paris on 14 December of the same year and both are important symbolic deadlines, she said.

Another key deadline is 5 October, the fifth anniversary of the fall of President Slobodan Milosevic of Yugoslavia, Ms. Hartmann said. "The Prosecutor expects that Serbia will live up to its promise given to her during her last visit to Belgrade and deliver Mladic before that date," she added.

"All these calls are important as they recall our duties towards the victims and towards the law. These words are necessary, but useless, if concrete actions are not taken at the same time in order to bring results. We should not forget that for the victims each new delay causes new wounds," she said.

Regarding the other three, ICTY has been notified that Sredoje Lukic, who had been hiding in Russia, had returned, surrendered and was to be transferred to The Hague in the coming days. Dragan Zelenovic, who was arrested in Russia at the end of August, also would be transferred soon, while Vlastimir Djordjevic, indicted for crimes committed in Kosovo, was believed to be still hiding in Russia.