Brammertz meets with Action Team

BELGRADE -- Hague Chief Prosecutor Serge Brammertz is rounding off his visit to Belgrade, and his final meeting will be with security services (BIA) chief Saša Vukadinović.

Vladimir Vukčević, Serge Brammertz (FoNet)
Vladimir Vukčević, Serge Brammertz (FoNet)

Brammertz met this morning with Serbian War Crimes Prosecutor Vladimir Vukčević.

The meeting lasted less than an hour but was successful, Prosecution spokesman Bruno Vekarić told B92.

“We’re pleased with the meeting. I think Brammertz took our arguments on board,“ he said, adding that the talks had covered operative information that could not be discussed in public.

Vekarić said that the next meeting would take place in Brussels in a few days.

Responding to MPs’ questions, Chairman of the National Council for Hague Tribunal Cooperation Rasim Ljajić said that Holland was insisting on Ratko Mladić’s extradition and that the pressure on Serbia would not abate until the job was done.

Ljajić added that Serbia was close to completing Hague cooperation, stressing that he did not believe there was any kind of center impeding the arrest of war crimes fugitives.

He insisted that he was not doing anything that could undermine the country’s position, pointing out that cooperation with the Hague was a legal obligation.

Ljajić said that Brammertz had been made aware of Serbia’s view that the Tribunal operated along double standards in its rulings, some of which had not been objective, but added that this would not forestall continued cooperation.

Asked by MP Vladan Batić about the verdict in the Ramush Haradinaj case, he responded that that case was due to go to appeal and that Belgrade would continue to supply the prosecution with documentary evidence pointing to his guilt.

Brammertz meets with Tadić, Dačić

Hague Chief Prosecutor Serge Brammertz met with senior Serbian officials yesterday to discuss progress in the hunt for the remaining war crimes fugitives.

At the meeting, President Boris Tadić said that the Serbian authorities were cooperating fully with the Hague Tribunal.

He pointed out that Belgrade had extradited 44 war crimes suspects to the Tribunal thus far and was fully aware of its international and domestic commitments to track down the remaining two fugitives, stated the president’s press service.

Tadić said that Serbia was intensively seeking Ratko Mladić and Goran Hadžić in order to bring cooperation with the Hague Tribunal to a successful close.

Brammertz had spoken earlier with Interior Minister Ivica Dačić, who stated that the prosecutor would be submitting a positive report to the UN on Serbia’s full cooperation with the court.

“That’s a very, very important factor on Serbia’s road to European integration,“ Dačić told journalists in parliament, adding that he had outlined his own view to Brammertz that it was in Belgrade’s interests to conclude cooperation with the Hague as soon as possible, as the whole country was in effect being held to ransom over this issue.

According to an Interior Ministry statement, Dačić brought the prosecutor up to speed on everything that Serbia had done in the preceding period to meet its international obligations, stressing that “Serbia is doing all it can currently to achieve full cooperation with the Hague Tribunal.“

Brammertz praised the work of the ministry and other state institutions, voicing the hope that that cooperation would continue, the statement added.

The minister asked the prosecutor to devote more attention to the state of health of certain suspects in the Hague's custody, adding that he hoped that some of those convicted before the Tribunal would be allowed to serve their sentences in countries in the region, the statement concluded.