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The chief prosecutor at the UN war crimes tribunal says that his office does not plan to expand the indictment against Ratko Mladic to include crimes in Croatia.
Serge Brammertz, the chief prosecutor at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, ICTY, has said that his office does not plan to expand the indictment against Mladic to include crimes committed in Croatia allegedly by troops under his command, including killings in Skabrnja in November 1991.
My office has no such intention, Brammertz said on Wednesday when answering questions at a news conference about whether the prosecutors would amend the indictment to include the responsibility of Mladic for war crimes in Croatia, notably the killings in Skabrnja.
During his trial at the UN tribunal, Mladic, the former Bosnian Serb military commander, will face charges including genocide and crimes against humanity committed in Bosnia during the war there. He will appear in court for the first time on Friday.
Brammertz convened the news conference in The Hague on Wednesday after Serbia extradited Mladic to the ICTY on Tuesday evening. He welcomed Mladic's arrest as a big step for international justice, adding that the forthcoming trial must meet expectations.
Croatian President Ivo Josipovic told the country's public broadcaster on Sunday that Mladic should be tried for crimes committed in Croatia.
"That would be absolutely just. Ratko Mladic must be tried for crimes in Croatia," Josipovic said, adding that the arrest and the future trial of Ratko Mladic would contribute to reconciliation in the region and improvement of relations among the countries.
Mladic was seized in northern Serbia on May 26 after more than 15 years on the run.
Timeline of events leading up to the arrest of Ratko Mladic.
Key dates and events in the Bosnia war.
Indictments in 1995 and 2000, further amended in 2002 and 2010, charge the former commander of the Republika Srpska Army with genocide and other crimes.
When Mladic ordered his army to bomb the people of Sarajevo until they ‘go insane’, he revealed the murderous intentions that would culminate in the Srebrenica massacre.
The reaction within Serbia to Mladic’s arrest is a perfect illustration of Belgrade’s struggle to bury its past without actually facing it, says Dejan Anastasijevic.