News / Europe

    War Crimes Tribunal in The Hague Prepares for Mladic Arrival

    n this June 28, 1996 file photo Bosnian Serb military commander General Ratko Mladic, center, smiles as he visits troops to mark both the fourth anniversary of the founding of his Bosnian Serb army and St. Vitus' Day, the anniversary of the Serb defeat by
    n this June 28, 1996 file photo Bosnian Serb military commander General Ratko Mladic, center, smiles as he visits troops to mark both the fourth anniversary of the founding of his Bosnian Serb army and St. Vitus' Day, the anniversary of the Serb defeat by
    Lauren Comiteau

    While Ratko Mladic is undergoing extradition proceedings in Belgrade, the Yugoslav war crimes Tribunal in The Hague is getting ready for his eventual arrival. The former military leader of the Bosnian Serbs faces charges there of genocide, murder and persecution for crimes that span the whole of the 1990’s Bosnian War. Our reporter is in The Hague to see how the court is preparing for its next big trial.

    The television satellite vans are already setting up camp outside the Tribunal, waiting for the arrival of General Ratko Mladic.  After 16 years on the run, his arrest Thursday was welcomed by Chief prosecutor Serge Brammertz. He says he’s ready for trial and confident about its outcome.

    "The crimes allegedly committed by Mladic have already been prosecuted several times already at this Tribunal," said Brammertz. "There have been several officers, generals who worked under the authority of Mladic who have already been convicted to very important sentences. So we are quite comfortable that the evidence available to us is quite convincing and we hope will convince a judge.

    That evidence includes the eye-witness testimony of survivors, Ratko Mladic’s own diaries, video and audio of the General on the battlefield saying he has come to take revenge on the Turks, and the many Bosnian Serb Army insiders who testified that Mladic was the commander giving the orders.

    The war crimes tribunal first indicted Ratko Mladic in 1995 on charges of genocide and crimes against humanity. Those charges include ethnic cleansing in Bosnia, the siege of Sarajevo, taking U.N. peacekeepers hostage, and, most infamously, the 1995 massacre in Srebrenica, when close to 8,000 Muslim men and boys were killed over the course of five days. In addition to genocide, he has been charged with persecution, murder, deportation and inflicting terror.

    Mladic has already been declared fit for extradition by a judge in Serbia. His lawyers say he is in poor health and that he will appeal that decision. But once Mladic does arrive in The Hague, he will be taken to the Tribunal’s prison  and given a medical exam. Within days he will face judges for his initial appearance - where he will have to enter a plea of guilty or not guilty to the 11 counts against him.

    Prosecutors have long maintained that Mladic was hiding in Serbia. In announcing the general’s arrest Thursday, Serbian President Boris Tadic said one chapter in the country’s recent history is closed. For Mladic, a new chapter - and what many believe will be his last - begins in The Hague any day now.

    You May Like

    US-Russia Tensions Complicate Syria War

    With a shared enemy and opposing allies, Russia and the US are working to avoid confrontation

    Video Re-opening Old Wounds in Beirut's Bullet-riddled Yellow House

    Built in neo-Ottoman style in 1920s, it is set to be re-opened in Sept. as ‘memory museum’ - bullet-riddled walls and bunkered positions overlooking city’s notorious ‘Green Line’ maintained for posterity

    Cambodian-Americans Lobby for Human Rights Resolution

    Resolution condemns all forms of political violence in Cambodia, urges Cambodian government to end human rights violations, calls for respect of press freedom

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Uncharted Territoryi
    X
    June 24, 2016 9:38 PM
    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
    Video

    Video Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Uncharted Territory

    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
    Video

    Video Orlando Shooting Changes Debate on Gun Control

    It’s been nearly two weeks since the largest mass shooting ever in the United States. Despite public calls for tighter gun control laws, Congress is at an impasse. Democratic lawmakers resorted to a 1960s civil rights tactic to portray their frustration. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti explains how the Orlando, Florida shooting is changing the debate.
    Video

    Video Tunisian Fishing Town Searches for Jobs, Local Development Solutions

    As the European Union tries to come to grips with its migrant crisis, some newcomers are leaving voluntarily. But those returning to their home countries face an uncertain future.  Five years after Tunisia's revolution, the tiny North African country is struggling with unrest, soaring unemployment and plummeting growth. From the southern Tunisian fishing town of Zarzis, Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at a search for local solutions.
    Video

    Video 'American Troops' in Russia Despite Tensions

    Historic battle re-enactment is a niche hobby with a fair number of adherents in Russia where past military victories are played-up by the Kremlin as a show of national strength. But, one group of World War II re-enactors in Moscow has the rare distinction of choosing to play western ally troops. VOA's Daniel Schearf explains.
    Video

    Video Experts: Very Few Killed in US Gun Violence Are Victims of Mass Shootings

    The deadly shooting at a Florida nightclub has reignited the debate in the U.S. over gun control. Although Congress doesn't provide government health agencies funds to study gun violence, public health experts say private research has helped them learn some things about the issue. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
    Video

    Video Trump Unleashes Broadside Against Clinton to Try to Ease GOP Doubts

    Recent public opinion polls show Republican Donald Trump slipping behind Democrat Hillary Clinton in the presidential election matchup for November. Trump trails her both in fundraising and campaign organization, but he's intensifying his attacks on the former secretary of state. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone reports.
    Video

    Video Muslim American Mayor Calls for Tolerance

    Syrian-born Mohamed Khairullah describes himself as "an American mayor who happens to be Muslim." As the three-term mayor of Prospect Park, New Jersey, he believes his town of 6,000 is an example of how ethnicity and religious beliefs should not determine a community's leadership. Ramon Taylor has this report from Prospect Park.
    Video

    Video Internal Rifts Over Syria Policy Could Be Headache for Next US President

    With the Obama administration showing little outward enthusiasm for adopting a more robust Syria policy, there is a strong likelihood that the internal discontent expressed by State Department employees will roll over to the next administration. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports.
    Video

    Video Senegal to Park Colorful ‘Cars Rapide’ Permanently

    Brightly painted cars rapide are a hallmark of Dakar, offering residents a cheap way to get around the capital city since 1976. But the privately owned minibuses are scheduled to be parked for good in late 2018, as Ricci Shryock reports for VOA.
    Video

    Video Florida Gets $1 Million in Emergency Government Funding for Orlando

    The U.S. government has granted $1 million in emergency funding to the state of Florida to cover the costs linked to the June 12 massacre in Orlando. U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced the grant Tuesday in Orlando, where she met with survivors of the shooting attack that killed 49 people. Zlatica Hoke reports.
    Video

    Video How to Print Impossible Shapes with Metal

    3-D printing with metals is rapidly becoming more advanced. As printers become more affordable, the industry is partnering with universities to refine processes for manufacturing previously impossible things. A new 3-D printing lab aims to bring the new technology closer to everyday use. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Big Somali Community in Minnesota Observes Muslim Religious Feast

    Ramadan is widely observed in the north central US state of Minnesota, which a large Muslim community calls home. VOA Somali service reporter Mohmud Masadde files this report from Minneapolis, the state's biggest city.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora