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LIST OF SUSPECTS: GETTING AWAY WITH GENOCIDE

October 3, 2007 1 comment

THE U.S. COURTS CHARGE SREBRENICA GENOCIDE SUSPECTS FOR IMMIGRATION FRAUD, BUT FAIL TO PROSECUTE THEM FOR WAR CRIMES

An Akron man was convicted Tuesday of lying about his service in a notorious Bosnian Serb army unit that massacred thousands of people during the war in the former Yugoslavia more than a decade ago.

Ratko Maslenjak and his family settled in Akron in 2000, but the man had a secret, federal prosecutors said: He served in the Bosnian Serb army and did not tell immigration officers when he applied for refugee status and later for a green card. Maslenjak thus kept officials from scrutinizing his past and possibly barring him from the United States, Assistant U.S. Attorney Phillip Tripi said.

Ratko Maslenjak, 48, belonged to a brigade connected to the Srebrenica massacre of 1995, prosecutors said. An estimated 8,000 Bosniaks were executed and thousands more driven from the United Nations-designated safe haven.

Duty rosters presented by prosecutors during a five-day trial revealed that Maslenjak served that year as a company commander. International investigators uncovered the rosters in Bosnia and Herzegovina during a war crimes probe.

Jurors heard little about the Srebrenica genocide or about Maslenjak’s specific duties. U.S. District Judge Solomon Oliver Jr. repeatedly told jurors that Maslenjak was on trial for immigration violations, not war crimes.

Defense lawyers argued that the Bosnian Serb army, also known as the VRS, drafted Maslenjak during the war between Bosnian Serbs, Bosniaks and Croats. The fighting ravaged the former Yugoslavia in the 1990s.

Maslenjak’s lawyers claimed that he failed to disclose his VRS duty because of alleged flaws in translation. Maslenjak does not speak or read English.

Maslenjak remained stoic Tuesday as he listened to the verdict through an interpreter. His wife Divna and pastor, the Rev. Dragomir Tuba, covered their faces in distress when a clerk announced the decision.

Maslenjak will be sentenced next year on the criminal charges and remains free on bond. He is also facing deportation.

Here is an incomplete list of Srebrenica genocide suspects who were (so far) arrested in the United States and charged only with immigration fraud, even though there was clear evidence of their involvement in the Srebrenica genocide – as confirmed by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement:

Sekula Bilic, indicted on one count of immigration fraud and one count of making false statements (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Zdravko Kordic, indicted on one count of immigration fraud (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Branko Popic, indicted on one count of immigration fraud and one count of making false statements (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Ostoja Saric, indicted on one count of immigration fraud and one count of making false statements (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Strahinja Krsmanovic, indicted on one count of immigration fraud (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Boro Stojanovic, indicted on one count of immigration fraud (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Jadranko Gostic, indicted on one count of unlawful procurement of citizenship and one count of making false statements (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Zoran Radic, indicted on one count of immigration fraud and making false statements. Radic remains at large (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Dusan Bosnjak, (remains at large) indicted on one count of immigration fraud and making false statements (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Bogdan Panic, (remains at large) indicted on one count of naturalization fraud and making false statements (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Nedjo Ikonic, charged with one count of immigration fraud (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Milivoje Jankovic, indicted on two counts of immigration fraud and two counts of making false statements (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Veselin Vidacak, indicted on two counts of immigration fraud and two counts of making false statements (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Milisav Vukovic, charged with one count of false statements (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Nedjo Lojpur, indicted on two counts of immigration fraud (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Ratko Maslenjak, charged with one count of immigration fraud (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Dalibor Butina, charged with one count of immigration fraud (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Radovan Jankovic, charged with one count of immigration fraud (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Vlado Kecojevic, charged with one count of immigration fraud (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Branislav Cancar, charged with one count of immigration fraud (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Mladen Blagojevic, charged with fraud or misuse of visas, permits, and other documents (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Nenad Dragic, charged with fraud or misuse of visas, permits, and other documents; and perjury (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Milenko Gujic, charged with fraud or misuse of visas, permits, and other documents (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Mitra Gujic, charged with fraud or misuse of visas, permits, and other documents (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Rajko Hercegovac, charged with fraud or misuse of visas, permits, and other documents (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Risto Hercegovac, charged with fraud or misuse of visas, permits, and other documents (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Momcilo Krstic, charged with fraud or misuse of visas, permits, and other documents; and perjury (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Rajko Ninkovic, charged with fraud or misuse of visas, permits, and other documents (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Radenko Spiric, charged with fraud or misuse of visas, permits, and other documents; and perjury (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Vitomir Spiric, charged with fraud or misuse of visas, permits, and other documents; and perjury (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Nikola Stankovic, charged with fraud or misuse of visas, permits, and other documents (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Savo Tojcic, charged with fraud or misuse of visas, permits, and other documents; and perjury (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Cvijan Vidakovic, charged with fraud or misuse of visas, permits, and other documents; and perjury (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Marko Boskic, charged with two counds of immigration document fraud (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Ugljesa Pantic, one count of possessing a green card obtained by making a false statement (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Zdravko Bozic, one count of immigration fraud (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Radenko Ubiparipovic, one count of immigration fraud (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Dragon Ubiparipovic, one count of immigration fraud (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Goran Bencun, one count of immigration fraud (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Milenko Stjepanovic, one count of immigration visa fraud charge (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Mirka Stjepanovic, one count of immigration visa fraud charge (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Ranko Nastic, one count of immigration visa fraud charge (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).

Branko Ristic, one count of immigration visa fraud charge (in connection with concealing prior service in the Bosnian Serb military who participated in Srebrenica genocide, Srebrenica massacre).


Sources and related readings:
1. Sixteen charged with concealing Bosnian Serb military when entering U.S. – U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (December 15, 2006)
2. Former member of brutal Bosnian Serb military unit sentenced to jail for concealing his military past – U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (November 20, 2006)
3. ICE probe leads to indictement of four former members of Bosnian Serb military for immigration fraud – U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (June 8 2006)
4. Thirteen past members of Serbian military indicted for immigration fraud – U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (September 14, 2005)
5. Four Serb suspects arrested in Chicago
6. Four Serbs on trial for Srebrenica genocide; Two of them deported from the U.S.
7. Butchers of Srebrenica hiding in the U.S.
8. The United States deports two Serbs wanted for Srebrenica massacre
9. Bosnian Serb immigrants failed to disclose their past service in Genocidal military
10. Marko Boskic – Srebrenica murderer
11. Butcher of Srebrenica wants his own admission kept silent
12. Srebrenica massacre gunmen will not face torture charges
13. Elusive Justice: a man who gunned down 1,200 Srebrenica Bosniaks
14. Phoenix, Arizona: Mecca for Serb suspects of Srebrenica genocide

LIST OF SREBRENICA GENOCIDE SUSPECTS

August 31, 2006 5 comments

NAMES OF SREBRENICA MASSACRE PERPETRATORS WHO ARE STILL IN POSITION OF POWER

NOTE: Srebrenica Genocide Blog will keep updating the list as names continue to be released by Sarajevo-based Oslobodjenje Daily.

The Bosnian daily newspaper Oslobodjenje has started publishing a list of over 800 Bosnian Serbs who allegedly participated in the Srebrenica massacre in July 1995, and are still believed to be in positions of power.

These names are just a small part of a much bigger list of some 28,000 people who, according to the Republika Srpska [Serb Entity in Bosnia], RS, authorities, were directly or indirectly involved in the massacre. Out of 28,000 names that the full version of the report apparently contains, 892 are reported to be individuals still employed by governmental and municipal institutions.

Back in October 2004, the RS Srebrenica Commission, under pressure from the international community, released a report in which they acknowledged that Serbs had been responsible for killing thousands of Bosniak men and boys from Srebrenica in July 1995.

First Part – 69 names, published on 08/24/06

Goran (Rajko) Abazović, Neško (Vladimir) Aćimović, Dušan (Drago) Aćimović, Milan (Vladimir) Aćimović, Zoran (Petko) Aćimović, Mile (Miladin) Aćimović, Siniša (Milan) Aleksić, Aleksa (Predrag) Aleksić, Draško (Božo) Aleksić, Milenko (Dragoljub) Aleksić, Brano (Dušan) Aleksić, Marko (Vladimir) Aleksić, Dragomir (Risto) Alempić, Rajko (Ljubinko) Alempić, Žarko (Vlajko) Andrić, Drago (Ljubo) Andrić, Mirjana (Stojan) Andrić, Nenad (Žarko) Andrić, Milan (Đorđo) Ašćerić, Radislav (Diko) Ašćerić, Dragomir (Božidar) Ašćerić, Vojslav (Ljubomir) Ašćerić, Mirko (Savo) Ašćerić, Dragan (Stevo) Ašćerić, Dragomir (Petar) Ašonja, Sveto (Rajko) Avramović, Miroslav (Jovo) Babić, Goran (Ilija) Bačić, Perica (Dragan) Bajević, Momir (Stojan) Bakmaz, Miroslav (Branko) Baljak, Novka (Petar) Banjac, Risto (Gojko) Barač, Ranko (Rajko) Baračanin, Dana (Branko) Bartula, Rade (Anđelko) Bašić, Miroslav (Mirko) Batovac, Ljubiša (Kosta) Bećarević, Siniša (Vladimir) Bećarević, Bogoljub (Bogdan) Begović, Goran (Cvijetin) Bencun, Milo (Božo) Bjelić, Marko (Risto) Blagojević, Ranko (Milivoje) Blagojević, Radenko (Neđo) Blagojević, Dušan (Slobodan) Blagojević, Gordana (Milan) Blažanović, Mila (Luka) Bodirogić, Milan (Anđelka) Bogdanović, Luka (Miladin) Bogdanović, Radovan (Mitar) Bojanić, Sredoje (Velizar) Bojić, Slobodan (Ljubo) Bojić, Milenko (Mijat) Borić, Radenko (Radosava) Borić, Darko (Vojislava) Borovčanin, Danko (Rade) Borovčanin, Radoslav (Milovan) Bošković, Todor (Boško) Bošković, Željko (Risto) Bošnjak, Obren (Dušan) Božić, Radoslav (Neđo) Božić, Kirilo (Mitar) Božić, čedo (Blagoje) Božić, Goran (Petar) Božičković, Borislav (Ratko) Božović, Stevo (Rado) Bunijevac, Boro (Marko) Bunjevac, Mile (Novo) Burilo.

Second Part: – 59 names, published on 08/25/06

Simo (Petar) Čabrić, Diko (Radivoje) Čabrić, Dragan (Nikola) Čabrić, Mario (Jozo) Cakalin, Radenko (Nenad) Čakarević, Vjekoslav (Veljko) Čakarević, Aleksa (Milentije) Čanić, Mladen (Bogoljub) Čavić, Predrag (Miodrag) Čelić, Rado (Krsto) Čelić, Ljubiša (Ranko) Čelić, Novica (Petar) Čelić, Petko (Milan) Cinco, Luka (Božo) Cinco, Milenko (Zdravko) Ćirković, Dragan (Branislav) Čobić, Marko (Dragiša) Čojić, Siniša (Šćepana) Čorić, Nemanja (Nedeljko) Crnjak, Rajko (Aleksa) Čuturić, Nada (Aleksa) Cvijan, Miljan (Borislav) Cijetić, Miroslav (Bogoljub) Cvijetić, Ristan (Čedo) Cvijetinović, Branislav (Matija) Čvorić, Radoš (Bojo) Čvoro, Todor (Milorad) Damnjanović, Stojan (Damjan) Danilović, Branislav (Boško) Danilović, Slaviša (Janko) Danojević, Vitomir (Rade) Deležan, Goran (Bogdan) Delmić, Milisav (Milan) Dendić, Milomir (Aćim) Đerić, Nenad (Spasoje) Deronjić, Boško (Miloš) Dešić, Nikola (Stjepan) Deurić, Goran (Zoran) Deurić, Momir (Lazo) Deurić, Milimir (Vojin) Divčić, Božidar (Drago) Đokić, Mirjana (Radoslav) Đokić, Slaviša (Dobrisav) Đokić, Savo (Sretko) Domazetović, Vitomir (Slobodan) Draganić, Miladin (Mitar) Dragić, Relja (Rajko) Dragić, Radomir (Branislav) Dragutinović, Zoran (Milan) Drakulić, Zoran (Ljuban) Drakulić, Ranko (Đorđo) Drašković, Marinko (Dražo) Dražić, Željko (Slobodan) Drljača, Dragiša (Mihajlo) Drljić, Pavle (Dragan) Dubov, Ljubiša (Cvijo) Đurić, Siniša (Mirko) Duković, Radinko (Mirko) Duković, Timo (Ratko) Dukić.

Third Part – 100 names, published on 09/05/2006

Tomislav (Milorad) Dukić, Rajko (Ratko) Dukić, Aleksandar (Vaso) Dukić, Zoran (Dejan) Durmić, Mile (Arsena) Đukić, Dragan (Milorad) Đukić, Brano (Milan) Đurđević, Miladin (Trivko) Đurić, Bogoljub (Gojko) Đurić, Dragan (Nikola) Đurić, Miloš (Nikola) Đurić, Boro (Veljko) Đurić, Srđan (Dušan) Đurić, Rajko (Slavko) Đurić, Milenko (Dušan) Đuričić, Aleksandar (Petar) Đurčić, Zoran (Mladen) Džabić, Nikola (Branko) Džebić, Brano (Ratomir) Džinić, Ratomir (Vukašin) Džinkić, Slaviša (Radivoje) Džuović, Veselin (Neđo) Erdelić, Ljuban (Milan) Erdelić, Radiša (Svetozar) Erić, Miroslav (Petko) Erić, Sreten (Tripun) Erić, Milenko (Todor) Erić, Cvjetko (Risto) Erić, Marinko (Mitar) Erić, Mirko (Miloš) Erkić, Dražan (Petar) Erkić, Nenad (Uroš) Filipović, Radiša (Simo) Filipović, Milomir (Danilo) Furtula, Aleksandar (Nikola) Gačanin, Veljko (Ilija) Gajić, Zoran (Milan) Gajić, Željko (Ilija) Gajić, Vlado (Čedo) Gajić, Ljubomir (Vukašin) Gajić, Milan (Mićo) Gajić, Goran (Branislav) Garić, Vojislav (Ilija) Gašanović, Mirko (Drago) Gašević, Miroslav (Miloš) Gatarić, Mladen (Stanko) Gavrić, Mikajlo (Bogdan) Gavrić, Ranko (Danilo) Gavrilović, Vida (Velimir) Glamočić, Miladin (Anđelko) Gligić, Milka (Petar) Gligorić, Siniša (Savo) Glogovac, Pero (Bogdan) Gluvak, Luka (Milutin) Gojgolović, Zoran (Đorđe) Gojković, Božica (Ilija) Golić, Dragan (Rajko) Golić, Ljepomir (Milan) Golić, Boško (Nikola) Golijanin, Goran (Ranko) Gostić, Miladin (Vid) Gostimirović, Ljubinko (Vid) Gostimirović, Slaviša (Milovan) Grahovac, Mirko (Bogoljub) Grujić, Slavoljub (Slavko) Gužvić, Dragan (Borislav) Hajduković, Dragan (Milojko) Ignjić, Dragan (Dragomir) Ikonić, Vidoje (Branko) Ilić, Mladen (Momir) Ilić, Ivo (Dušan) Ilić, Rajko (Pantelije) Ilić, Jovan (Savo) Ilić, Dragan (Desimir) Ilić, Stevo (Dušan) Ilić, Zoran (Živko) Ilić, Milenija (Miloš) Ilić, Cvijeta (Mihajlo) Ilić, Mladen (Lazo) Iličić, Dragan (Desimir) Iljić, Risto (Gojko) Ivanović, Milenko (Radenko) Ivanović, Željko (Gojko) Ivanović, Diko (Milenko) Ivanović, Đorđe (Risto) Ivanović, Radivoje (Dragoslav) Ivanović, Goran (Sreten) Ivanović, Nedeljko (Tomo) Jaćimović, Krsto (Boško) Jakšić, Zoran (Ljubisav) Janjić, Milorad (Radislav) Janjić, Nenad (Petar) Janjić, Lenka (Jovan) Janjušić, Jovo (Marijan) Janković, Boro (Dragomir) Jelić, Zoran (Zdravko) Jeličić, Slaviša (Radovan) Jelisić, Nebojša (Slobodan) Jeremić, Mile (Veselin) Jerkić.

U.S. DEPORTS TWO SREBRENICA MASSACRE SUSPECTS TO BOSNIA

July 5, 2006 Comments off

UNITED STATES DEPORTS TWO SERBS WANTED FOR SREBRENICA GENOCIDE

50 Bosnian women, relatives of victims of the Srebrenica massacre gather seen here holding a banner with the 8106 names of the victims in front of the International Court of Justice in The Hague, in February 2006. The United States deported to Bosnia two Bosnian Serbs wanted by a local court on charges of genocide committed in the 1995 Srebrenica massacre, an official said.(AFP/ANP/File/Ilvy Njiokiktjien)SARAJEVO – The United States deported to Bosnia two Bosnian Serbs wanted by a local court on charges of genocide committed in the 1995 Srebrenica massacre, officials said.

“The United States authorities deported today two persons and handed them over to Bosnia-Hercegovina’s prosecutors’ office,” the prosecutors’ office said in a statement.

The statement identified the two only as Zdravko B. and Goran B. adding that they were “suspected of participation in war crimes and genocide committed in July 1995 in Srebrenica.” Their identities were revealed by the Court of Bosnia-Herzegovina. They are: Goran Bencun and Zdravko Bozic [source].

Speaking on condition of anonymity, a senior police officer told AFP that the two were “Bosnian Serbs” who were “handed over to Bosnian police at the Sarajevo airport around noon (1000 GMT).”

The US embassy here could not comment immediately.

The July 1995 Srebrenica massacre of over 8,000 Bosniak (Bosnian Muslim) men and boys by Bosnian Serb forces is the worst massacre in Europe since World War II and the first legally established case of genocide in Europe after the Holocaust.

The atrocity became a symbol of brutality of Bosnia’s 1992-95 war, which claimed over 100,000 lives.

It was qualified as an act of genocide by the UN war crimes court in The Hague.

Court of Bosnia-HerzegovinaEleven Bosnian Serbs are currently on trial before the Sarajevo-based Court of Bosnia-Hercegovina (link) for killing more than 1,000 Bosniak civilians in a single day during the massacre. They are facing genocide charges.

The Srebrenica massacre is at the center of genocide charges against Bosnian Serb wartime leader Radovan Karadzic and his army commander Ratko Mladic, both wanted by the UN tribunal.

The two, believed to be hiding in Serb-controlled part of Bosnia and in Serbia, remain on the run almost 11 years since the Srebrenica massacre.

Related:

SREBRENICA MASSACRE BUTCHERS STILL ADMIRED IN SERBIA

June 15, 2006 1 comment
PEOPLE RESPONSIBLE FOR SLAUGHTER OF OVER 8,000 BOSNIAKS IN SREBRENICA STILL REGARDED AS ‘HEROES’ IN SERBIA

BELGRADE, Serbia – The general still has his admirers.

Serb General Ratko Mladic is directly responsible for Srebrenica Massacre in which over 8,000 Bosniak men and boys perished and in which over 25,000 Bosniak women were forcibly deported, many of them raped and degraded - all under United Nation's watchIn the musty headquarters of the Center for the Investigation of War Crimes Against Serbs in Bosnia-Herzegovina, his portrait is prominently displayed on the wall behind Ljubisa Ristic’s desk. There were about 2,000 Serb civilian casualties in the war which Serbia waged against Bosnia-Herzegovina between 1992 and 1995 [sourceas of Dec 15, 2005 data].

“My personal opinion is that he is a true soldier and a hero of the Serbian people,” Ristic said.

It is not clear how many other Serbs feel that way about Gen. Ratko Mladic, the wartime commander of the Bosnian Serb army and chief executor of its ethnic cleansing campaign.

“I’d say 75 percent of the Serbs see him as a war hero,” said Aleksandar Tijanic, who heads the state-run television network in Serbia. “But if you ask them if he should he go to The Hague to save the Serbs from more suffering, 75 percent would say yes.”

Mladic, who has been charged with genocide by the U.N. war crimes tribunal in The Hague, has been on the run since the collapse of Yugoslav leader Slobodan Milosevic’s regime in October 2000.

Last month, the European Union broke off talks with Belgrade aimed at preparing Serbia for EU membership after President Vojislav Kostunica’s government missed another deadline for delivering Mladic. The United States followed suit this month, canceling a $7 million aid package to the Serbian government.

Carla Del Ponte, the tribunal’s chief prosecutor, has claimed repeatedly that Mladic is in Serbia and within the reach of Belgrade authorities. She says the government simply lacks the political will to arrest him.

That appeared to be the case in February when there were feverish media reports that the general had been cornered at a hiding place near the Bosnian border.

“But instead of arresting him, they started negotiating with him,” said Bratislav Grubacic, a political analyst who publishes a widely respected newsletter.

The negotiations came to nothing. “And now they really don’t know where he is,” Grubacic said. “For this government, I think they prefer not to know.”

Vladan Batic, the former Yugoslav justice minister who ordered the extradition of Milosevic to The Hague in June 2001, agrees with Del Ponte that the present government lacks the political will to deliver Mladic.

“Kostunica was hoping that Mladic would surrender himself,” said Batic. “He knows Mladic is our ticket to Europe, but he’s afraid that if he gives up Mladic, he’ll lose a lot of votes and won’t be seen as a so-called patriot.” Batic, who heads a small opposition party and who retains good police and security contacts, believes Mladic is holed up at the Topcider military base, a large complex amid a forest outside Belgrade that has an elaborate network of tunnels.

State TV boss Tijanic, who is close to Kostunica, disputes the Topcider theory and also the suggestion that Kostunica is afraid of arresting Mladic.

“Today, Kostunica’s government is willing to send him to The Hague, but they don’t know where he is hiding,” Tijanic said.

Citing the recent arrests of about a dozen people thought to be part of Mladic’s support system, Tijanic claimed that Mladic has cut all of his contacts with the military and security forces and is hiding on his own.

The international community’s focus on Mladic has diverted attention from Radovan Karadzic, the Bosnian Serb wartime political leader, also charged with genocide and still on the run.


There are three explanations.

The first is The Hague’s experience in prosecuting genocide cases, which argues that it is much easier to obtain a conviction against military officers, who answer to a clear chain of command, than it is against their political bosses. A second explanation is that Karadzic, who is believed to be in Bosnia, has done a better job hiding himself.

The last, based on a persistent rumor echoed by nearly every diplomat and expert in the Balkans, is that at the time of the Dayton peace agreement, Karadzic cut a deal that he would completely withdraw from politics if authorities would not try too hard to find him. Little has been heard from him since.

A year ago, public opinion in Serbia was shaken by a video recording that came to light during the Milosevic trial. It shows members of an Interior Ministry death squad known as the Scorpions executing six handcuffed Bosniak men and boys from Srebrenica, where more than 8,000 Bosniak men and boys were massacred in 1995, allegedly on orders from Mladic.

The video [source], shot by one of the participants, was shown on Serbian television and the government, for the first time, acknowledged that Serbs were guilty of atrocities. The killers, who were identifiable on the video, have been arrested and are being tried in Serbian courts.

Ristic, from the center for war crimes against Serbs, said the trials were appropriate, but insisted that the Scorpion tape has not shaken his faith in Mladic’s innocence.

“I was not there (Srebrenica), so I can’t tell you whether he ordered anything or not. But after our clear-cut victory, it was not in Serbia’s interest to do something like that,” he said.

Milan Protic, a historian who served as Yugoslavia’s first ambassador to the United States in the post-Milosevic era, said that only “stupid minds” in Serbia continued to view Mladic as a hero, but that it also is wrong for the EU and the United States to hold all of Serbia hostage to his arrest.

“He is an obsolete symbol, this dirty little Serbian commander from Bosnia,” he said, “but the West is using him to complicate all kinds of things for Serbia.

SERBIAN MEDIA FUELS DISINFORMATION

April 22, 2006 1 comment

Prosecution Dismisses Stanisic and Simatovic Speculation

Prosecution spokesman Anton Nikiforov has spoken out against suggestions in the Serbian media that two former members of the Serbian State Security Service, DB, Franko Simatovic and Jovica Stanisic, have been acquitted of charges relating the Srebrenica massacre.

At a routine tribunal press conference on April 19, Nikiforov underlined that the source of the speculation, a decision issued a week earlier by the judges overseeing the case, in fact only concerned clarifications to the indictment against the two men.

The charge sheet against Simatovic and Stanisic includes several paragraphs detailing the murders of over 8,000 Bosniak prisoners from the town of Srebrenica in July 1995 and subsequent efforts to cover up the atrocity.

The judges wanted prosecutors to make it clear that as far as these crimes go, Simatovic and Stanisic are only charged on the basis of the murders of six particular prisoners from Srebrenica, whose executions were captured in a home video which was made public last year.

Those seen in the footage carrying out the murders were members of a paramilitary unit known as the Scorpions, which prosecutors say was subordinated to the DB at the time.

The judges emphasised that any links between this particular crime and a so-called joint criminal enterprise, including the massacre of thousands of other prisoners from Srebrenica, was “a matter for trial”.

They also asked prosecutors to make it clear that Simatovic and Stanisic were not charged with deporting or forcibly transferring people from Srebrenica.

SIX SREBRENICA MASSACRE SUSPECTS PLEAD NOT GUILTY

April 5, 2006 Comments off

Six Bosnian Serbs plead not guilty over Srebrenica


Six former Bosnian Serb officers pleaded not guilty on Tuesday at the U.N. war crimes tribunal to charges of genocide over the 1995 Srebrenica massacre of more than 8,000 Bosniak men and boys.
The men have already appeared individually before the court but last year their indictments on charges of genocide or complicity in genocide, crimes against humanity and violations of the laws or customs of war were combined in a single indictment. Presiding judge Carmel Agius said in court he plans to start the combined trial in August.

The six men — Vinko Pandurevic, Ljubisa Beara, Vujadin Popovic, Drago Nikolic, Milorad Trbic and Ljubomir Borovcanin — all surrendered to the tribunal. Zdravko Tolimir, however, is still on the run.

Tolimir was one of several aides to wartime Bosnian Serb army chief Ratko Mladic, who is also still at large and one of the tribunal’s most wanted men.

Mladic is also indicted over the Srebrenica massacre, the worst mass killing in Europe since world War Two, and the 43-month siege of Sarajevo in which more than 15,000 people died.

The Hague tribunal’s chief prosecutor Carla del Ponte insists Mladic is sheltered by hardline army officers in Serbia, which Belgrade denies.
Two other Mladic aides are also named in the indictment but they are not charged with genocide.
Radivoje Miletic and Milan Gvero, who are currently on provisional release, are charged with crimes against humanity and violations of the laws or customs of wars including murder, persecution, forcible transfer and deportation.

E.U. GIVES SERBIA ANOTHER MONTH TO CATCH BUTCHER OF SREBRENICA

April 4, 2006 Comments off


European Union gives Serbia another month to catch Mladic

By Mark John and Ingrid Melander

BRUSSELS – The European Union gave Serbia another month to catch Bosnian Serb general Ratko Mladic on Friday after U.N. war crimes prosecutor Carla del Ponte said Belgrade‘s cooperation with her tribunal had improved.
The EU had threatened to call off the next round of talks on closer ties with Serbia next Wednesday if Del Ponte judged that Belgrade was dragging its feet over arresting the fugitive indicted for genocide in the 1992-1995 Bosnia war.
But EU Enlargement Commissioner Olli Rehn said del Ponte had cited progress in Belgrade‘s efforts “which gives a credible possibility of concrete results in the weeks to come” and that the EU would review the situation again at the end of April.
“On this basis, I have decided to maintain the negotiation round next week,” Rehn said after talks with Del Ponte.
He added in a written statement that Serbian Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica had pledged in a telephone call on Friday to locate, arrest and transfer Mladic “without delay.”
Mladic is indicted with Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic for genocide over the 1995 Srebrenica massacre of 8,000 Bosniaks — the worst mass killing in Europe since the end of World War Two — and the 43-month siege of Sarajevo in which more than 15,000 people died.
Del Ponte says he is being sheltered by hardliners in Serbia, a charge Belgrade denies but which Brussels supports.
Jovan Simic, an adviser to President Boris Tadic who leads the opposition Democratic Party, welcomed the EU decision.
“We have to fulfill a lot of conditions besides the Hague condition and if the talks were suspended we would only be losing time for getting to the doorstep of the EU,” he told Reuters in Belgrade.
Del Ponte made no public comment after her meeting with Rehn. Asked if she was disappointed with the decision to carry on with the talks, an aide to the prosecutor said: “We believe that the EU has a tough line. We are grateful to the EU.”
Friday‘s decision was in contrast to the EU‘s action last March, when it suspended the start of membership talks with Croatia over the failure to arrest and hand over a fugitive Croatian general wanted on lesser war crimes charges.
The EU agreed to open the accession negotiations in October after Del Ponte certified that Zagreb was cooperating fully with the tribunal. The wanted former general, Ante Gotovina, was captured in the Spanish Canary Islands in December.
There is recurrent speculation in Serbia that Mladic is in touch indirectly with Belgrade about possible surrender, or has already turned down state overtures to give himself up.
Talk of a Mladic handover ebbed after the EU gave Belgrade the benefit of the doubt and started negotiations on a so-called stabilization and association agreement (SAA), the first rung on the ladder to eventual EU entry, on November 7 last year.
Analysts said the major powers were more anxious about winning Serbia‘s cooperation in UN-mediated talks over the future of Kosovo , the Albanian dominated province that wants to break away and become independent this year.
Commentators more recently have said the West will be careful not to overplay its hand with Belgrade following the death in a Hague detention cell this month of former strongman Slobodan Milosevic , an event which briefly rallied hardliners.
A spokeswoman for Rehn said the EU hoped the SAA talks could be completed as planned by the end of the year. But accession is not expected until 2015 at the earliest.