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Voice of America, 01-08-02

Voice of America: Selected Articles Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Voice of America <gopher://gopher.voa.gov>

SLUG: 2-278923 Bosnia/Arrests (L-O) DATE: NOTE NUMBER:

CONTENTS

  • [01] BOSNIA/ARRESTS (L-O) BY STEFAN BOS (BUDAPEST)
  • [02] BOSNIA/ARRESTS (L-O) BY STEFAN BOS (BUDAPEST)
  • [03] MACEDONIA (L ONLY) BY JEFF BIELEY (OHRID)
  • [04] BOSNIA / WAR CRIMES / ALTERNATE (L ONLY) BY LAUREN COMITEAU (THE HAGUE)
  • [05] BOSNIA / WAR CRIMES (L) BY ROGER WILKISON (BRUSSELS)
  • [06] BOSNIA / WAR CRIMES (S) BY ROGER WILKISON (BRUSSELS)
  • [07] BOSNIA / WAR CRIMES (S) BY ROGER WILKISON (BRUSSELS)

  • [01] BOSNIA/ARRESTS (L-O) BY STEFAN BOS (BUDAPEST)

    DATE=08/02/01
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-278923
    INTERNET=YES CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:
    /// Re-running w/dd the word "law" in last sentence of 7th graph from text ///

    INTRO: The government of the Muslin-Croat federation within Bosnia-Herzegovina says it has arrested three Muslim military officers wanted by the United Nations War Crimes Tribunal in The Hague. Stefan Bos in Budapest says that at least two of them reportedly have already been handed over to The Hague Tribunal.

    TEXT: The Muslim-Croat federation authorities said late Thursday that two retired army generals and an active brigadier voluntarily surrendered to local police, after they had been served with the Constitutional Court's extradition decision. Government officials said the Court ordered their detention and subsequent extradition on the basis of secret indictments and arrest warrants from The Netherlands-based United Nations War Crimes Tribunal. Prosecution spokeswoman Florence Hartmann confirmed to The Associated Press that indictments have been handed to authorities in Sarajevo, but she refused to release names or other details. In a statement, the government named the generals as Mehmed Alagic and Enver Hadzihasanovic and the brigadier as Amir Kubura. Muslim-Croat federation police reportedly detained the former generals early Thursday and soon escorted them to flights to The Hague. But police officials were not available for comment or confirmation. Observers say that generals Alagic and Hadzihasanovic would be the highest-ranking Muslims so far to be transferred to the U.N. Tribunal on suspicion of war-crimes. General Alagic was reportedly arrested at his family home in Sanski Most while General Hadzihasanovic was picked up in his home in Sarajevo. Ministry of Defense officials said Brigadier Kubura, a wartime commander of the so-called seventh Muslim brigade of the Bosnian Army, was also detained in the Bosnian Capital. General Alagic retired after the war and was elected head of the Sanski Most municipality. He was later removed from the post and earlier this year sentenced by a local court to four years in prison on charges of abuse of power. General Hadzihasanovic held several army posts during the war and became commander of the Third Corps. He was then promoted to the post of chief of staff of the Muslim-Croat federation army's joint command, before retiring last year. The latest developments are seen as a sign that the Muslim-Croat federation, one of two highly-autonomous entities in ethnically-divided Bosnia Herzegovina, is willing to cooperate with The Hague Tribunal. In 1996, the federation arrested and extradited to The Hague two Muslims who were later sentenced to 15 and 20 years in prison for war crimes they committed against Serbs in a detention camp near Sarajevo, during the war. The other entity, the Serb Republic, only last month drafted a proposed law on cooperation with The Hague tribunal. But the law has not received final approval and the Serb Republic has not yet arrested any war crimes suspects, although most of about 40 wanted men are believed to be hiding there. NATO-led peacekeepers have arrested about 20 Bosnian Serb and Croat war crimes suspects since 1996. However tribunal prosecutors have pressured NATO to do more to arrest the key war crimes suspects, former Bosnian Serb President Radovan Karadzic and his wartime military advisor Ratko Mladic. Both wartime leaders have been indicted, but remain at large. (SIGNED)
    NEB/SB/FC SLUG: 2-278923 Bosnia/Arrests (L-O) DATE: NOTE NUMBER:


    [02] BOSNIA/ARRESTS (L-O) BY STEFAN BOS (BUDAPEST)

    DATE=08/02/01
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-278923
    INTERNET=YES CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: The government of the Muslin-Croat federation within Bosnia-Herzegovina says it has arrested three Muslim military officers wanted by the United Nations War Crimes Tribunal in The Hague. Stefan Bos in Budapest says that at least two of them reportedly have already been handed over to The Hague Tribunal.

    TEXT: The Muslim-Croat federation authorities said late Thursday that two retired army generals and an active brigadier voluntarily surrendered to local police, after they had been served with the Constitutional Court's extradition decision. Government officials said the Court ordered their detention and subsequent extradition on the basis of secret indictments and arrest warrants from The Netherlands-based United Nations War Crimes Tribunal. Prosecution spokeswoman Florence Hartmann confirmed to The Associated Press that indictments have been handed to authorities in Sarajevo, but she refused to release names or other details. In a statement, the government named the generals as Mehmed Alagic and Enver Hadzihasanovic and the brigadier as Amir Kubura. Muslim-Croat federation police reportedly detained the former generals early Thursday and soon escorted them to flights to The Hague. But police officials were not available for comment or confirmation. Observers say that generals Alagic and Hadzihasanovic would be the highest-ranking Muslims so far to be transferred to the U.N. Tribunal on suspicion of war-crimes. General Alagic was reportedly arrested at his family home in Sanski Most while General Hadzihasanovic was picked up in his home in Sarajevo. Ministry of Defense officials said Brigadier Kubura, a wartime commander of the so-called seventh Muslim brigade of the Bosnian Army, was also detained in the Bosnian Capital. General Alagic retired after the war and was elected head of the Sanski Most municipality. He was later removed from the post and earlier this year sentenced by a local court to four years in prison on charges of abuse of power. General Hadzihasanovic held several army posts during the war and became commander of the Third Corps. He was then promoted to the post of chief of staff of the Muslim-Croat federation army's joint command, before retiring last year. The latest developments are seen as a sign that the Muslim-Croat federation, one of two highly-autonomous entities in ethnically-divided Bosnia Herzegovina, is willing to cooperate with The Hague Tribunal. In 1996, the federation arrested and extradited to The Hague two Muslims who were later sentenced to 15 and 20 years in prison for war crimes they committed against Serbs in a detention camp near Sarajevo, during the war. The other entity, the Serb Republic, only last month drafted a proposed law on cooperation with The Hague tribunal. But the has not received final approval and the Serb Republic has not yet arrested any war crimes suspects, although most of about 40 wanted men are believed to be hiding there. NATO-led peacekeepers have arrested about 20 Bosnian Serb and Croat war crimes suspects since 1996. However tribunal prosecutors have pressured NATO to do more to arrest the key war crimes suspects, former Bosnian Serb President Radovan Karadzic and his wartime military advisor Ratko Mladic. Both wartime leaders have been indicted, but remain at large. (SIGNED)
    NEB/SB/FC SLUG: 2-278916 Macedonia (L-O) DATE: NOTE NUMBER:


    [03] MACEDONIA (L ONLY) BY JEFF BIELEY (OHRID)

    DATE=08/02/01
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-278916
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: Macedonia's prime minister said today (Thursday) that before the government signs an accord to end months of fighting, ethnic-Albanian rebels must give up territory they now hold. As Jeff Bieley reports, the prime minister's remarks, made on the country's national holiday, cast a shadow over peace talks set to resume Friday.

    TEXT: Prime Minister Ljubco Georgievski said even if a peace deal is struck with ethnic-Albanian political leaders, signing it under duress would bring shame on the country. In a speech marking Macedonia's national day, Mr. Georgievski said he hoped negotiations to end an ethnic Albanian insurgency would be successful. But he went on to say that Macedonians would be humiliated if an accord were signed now, while what he called "terrorists" are occupying dozens of villages near the borders with Albania and Kosovo.

    /// OPT ///

    The prime minister said, "We must take back our occupied territories because we can't close our eyes to the fact that we are talking under the threat of guns." /// END OPT /// However, in an illustration of the divisions among ethnic-Macedonian leaders, the country's foreign minister, Ilinka Mitreva, delivered a speech Thursday sharply critical of Macedonian hard-liners. She described them as "artificial heroes" who are, quote, "offering primitive formulas saying that dialogue equals weakness, with which they are beating the drums of war." Peace talks are set to resume in the southwestern town of Ohrid Friday. On Wednesday, political leaders reportedly made significant progress when they agreed on a compromise formula for expanded official use of the Albanian language. Friday's discussions are expected to shift to proposals for police reforms. Until now, talks have only been held among the leaders of Macedonia's four largest political parties. But before any final deal could take effect, parliament would have final say over passage of a series of legal and constitutional reforms. Macedonia's parliament speaker, Stoyan Andov, who is a close political ally of the prime minister, also addressed a crowd celebrating Thursday's holiday. Mr. Andov said the legislature would not consider ratifying a peace accord until all ethnic Albanian guerrillas are disarmed. Ethnic-Albanian rebel leaders have said they would disarm and disband voluntarily only if they had legal guarantees of greater rights for ethnic Albanians. (SIGNED)
    NEB/JB/KL/MAR SLUG: 2-278915 Bosnia / War Crimes / Alternate (L) DATE: NOTE NUMBER:

    [04] BOSNIA / WAR CRIMES / ALTERNATE (L ONLY) BY LAUREN COMITEAU (THE HAGUE)

    DATE=08/02/01
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-278915
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: Judges at the Yugoslav war crimes tribunal in The Hague have handed down their first genocide conviction. Bosnian Serb general Radislav Krstic was found guilty of genocide for his role in massacres in Srebrenica in 1995 and sentenced to 46 years in prison. Lauren Comiteau has more from The Hague.

    TEXT: This is a historic moment for the tribunal and a clear victory for prosecutors. Not only did judges rule in their favor on all counts, but they have established -- for the first time -- that genocide was committed in Bosnia. Presiding Judge Almiro Rodrigues said that although Krstic didn't make the decision to execute between seven-thousand and eight-thousand Muslim men after the fall of Srebrenica, he nevertheless knowingly agreed to an evil plan. Judge Rodrigues spoke through an interpreter.

    /// RODRIGUES ACT ///

    You are guilty of having agreed to the plan to conduct mass executions of all the men of fighting age. You are therefore guilty of genocide, General Krstic.

    /// END ACT ///

    What happened at Srebrenica has been well documented, but this is the first time an international court has ruled it as fact. Judge Rodrigues said that what started as an ethnic cleansing campaign to rid Srebrenica of its Muslims, eventually became genocide. The general was there, ruled the judges, when the decision was made to separate the women from the men, he was there when the men were driven away to be executed, and it was his troops who committed the massacres. Judges ruled he did nothing to prevent the crimes or punish those who committed them. Defense lawyers say the general, who appeared nervous during the hour and a half long proceeding, was not surprised by the verdict, but he will appeal both it and the sentence. Although prosecutors had asked for consecutive life sentences, lead prosecutor Mark Harmon said he's satisfied with Krstic's 46 years -- the longest sentence handed down by this court. In the judgement, former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic and his military commander, General Ratko Mladic, figure highly as key planners of the Srebrenica events. They've also been indicted for genocide in Srebrenica, but are still at large. Prosecutor Harmon said their time has come.

    /// HARMON ACT ///

    They have to be brought here. Obviously the implications are that one trial chamber has made a finding of genocide and has listened to substantial evidence in this case. And it's now time for Karadzic and Mladic to come to The Hague to present defenses to those charges that have been outstanding for many, many years.

    /// END ACT ///

    If and when they do get here, the case against them will be well established. (Signed)
    NEB/JB/KL/KBK SLUG: 2-278906 Bosnia / War Crimes (L) DATE: NOTE NUMBER:

    [05] BOSNIA / WAR CRIMES (L) BY ROGER WILKISON (BRUSSELS)

    DATE=8/2/01
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-278906
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: The International War Crimes Tribunal in The Hague has convicted a former Bosnian Serb general of genocide for his participation in the 1995 killing of thousands of Bosnian Muslims in Srebrenica. V-O-A Correspondent Roger Wilkison reports it is the first time that anyone has been convicted of genocide for crimes committed in Europe.

    TEXT: The court sentenced 53-year-old Radislav Krstic to 46 years in prison for genocide and the persecution of thousands of Bosnian Muslims after Bosnian Serb forces overran the United Nations safe haven of Srebrenica in July 1995. It is the harshest sentence handed down so far by the tribunal. General Krstic had pleaded not guilty to genocide and the other charges against him. He denied responsibility for the killing of seven thousand to eight thousand Muslim men and boys that followed the Bosnian Serb army's capture of Srebrenica. General Krstic argued that his superior officer, General Ratko Mladic, gave the orders for the execution. But the tribunal ruled that General Krstic knew that massacres were taking place. Judge Almiro Rodrigues, speaking through an interpreter, said though the responsibility of others may be greater, General Krstic was guilty of agreeing to a plan to execute Srebrenica's men and boys of fighting age.

    /// JUDGE AND INTERPRETER ACT ///

    In July 1995, General Krstic, individually you agreed to evil. And this is why today this trial chamber convicts you and sentences you to 46 years in prison.

    /// END ACT ///

    The grim-faced former officer, who lost a leg in a mine explosion, was allowed to remain seated when the sentence was read out. Judge Rodrigues, in a lengthy summing-up of the facts surrounding the Srebrenica massacre, described what he called the killing spree that immediately followed the Bosnian Serb army's capture of the town. He somberly described how the Bosnian Serbs rounded up all Muslim men of fighting age, loaded them into trucks, transported them to remote locations, and summarily executed all but a few of them. The guilty verdict for General Krstic is an indication that the two most wanted men sought by the tribunal, former Bosnian Serb political leader Radovan Karadzic and General Mladic, are also likely to face genocide convictions -- if the two men are ever brought to trial. (Signed)
    NEB/RW/KL/KBK SLUG: 2-278901 Bosnia / War Crimes (S) DATE: NOTE NUMBER:

    [06] BOSNIA / WAR CRIMES (S) BY ROGER WILKISON (BRUSSELS)

    DATE=8/2/01
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER= (cq) 2-278901
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    /// EDS: RE-ISSUING, REPRHASING INTRO ///

    INTRO: The International War Crimes Tribunal in The Hague has convicted a former Bosnian Serb general of genocide for his participation in the 1995 killing of thousands of Bosnian Muslims in Srebrenica. The court sentenced him to 46 years in prison. V-O-A Correspondent Roger Wilkison reports it is the first time that anyone has been convicted of genocide for crimes committed in Europe.

    TEXT: Fifty-three-year-old Radislav Krstic was found guilty of genocide for agreeing to a plan to execute between seven-thousand and eight-thousand Bosnian Muslim men and boys in Srebrenica, a United Nations safe haven that was overrun by Bosnian Serb forces in July 1995. General Krstic had pleaded not guilty to genocide and other charges, such as persecution and forced deportation of Muslims. But Judge Almiro Rodrigues ruled that, though somebody else probably ordered the executions, General Krstic agreed that they should take place. The judge also ruled that General Krstic had knowingly taken part in the forced transfer of thousands of Bosnian Muslim women, children and old people from Srebrenica. In a lengthy summary of the facts, the judge said the Bosnian Serb forces executed nearly all of the seven to eight-thousand men they captured over a seven-day period. Describing the events at Srebrenica as a killing spree, Judge Rodrigues said not a single Serb was punished for the massacre, considered Europe's worst atrocity since World War Two. (Signed)
    NEB/RE/GE/JWH SLUG: 2-278901 Bosnia / War Crimes (S) DATE: NOTE NUMBER:


    [07] BOSNIA / WAR CRIMES (S) BY ROGER WILKISON (BRUSSELS)

    DATE=8/2/01
    TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT
    NUMBER=2-278901
    CONTENT=
    VOICED AT:

    INTRO: The International War Crimes Tribunal in The Hague has convicted a former Bosnian Serb general of genocide for his participation in the 1995 killing of thousands of Bosnian Muslims in Srebrenica. The court sentenced him to 46 years in prison. V-O-A Correspondent Roger Wilkison reports it is the first time that anyone has been convicted of genocide for crimes committed in Europe since the end of World War Two

    TEXT: Fifty-three-year-old Radislav Krstic was found guilty of genocide for agreeing to a plan to execute between seven-thousand and eight-thousand Bosnian Muslim men and boys in Srebrenica, a United Nations safe haven that was overrun by Bosnian Serb forces in July 1995. General Krstic had pleaded not guilty to genocide and other charges, such as persecution and forced deportation of Muslims. But Judge Almiro Rodrigues ruled that, though somebody else probably ordered the executions, General Krstic agreed that they should take place. The judge also ruled that General Krstic had knowingly taken part in the forced transfer of thousands of Bosnian Muslim women, children and old people from Srebrenica. In a lengthy summary of the facts, the judge said the Bosnian Serb forces executed nearly all of the seven to eight-thousand men they captured over a seven-day period. Describing the events at Srebrenica as a killing spree, Judge Rodrigues said not a single Serb was punished for the massacre, considered Europe's worst atrocity since World War Two. (Signed)
    NEB/RE/GE/JWH


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