Sunday, October 7, 2007


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (October 7,2007) - In a statement on the Bosnian police reform, the International Community's High Representative/EU Special Representative, Miroslav Lajčák, said: “Last Monday I announced that few more days would be given to political leaders of Bosnia to reach an agreement on police reform.

This was based on the positive developments which resulted in signature of a paper by leaders of SBiH and SNSD at the end of last week, the need for them to clarify the detail and seek the views of other political parties.

In regard to the paper reflecting the views of SBiH and SNSD, I need to inform you that regrettably one of the parties has not clarified the contents of the paper, which raises questions about the seriousness of their approach. I have no choice but to confirm my initial assessment of their paper – in its current version, it fails to fulfill the 3 EU principles.

My 'Draft Protocol on Meeting the Police Reform Requirements Necessary for Initialing and Signing the Stabilisation and Association Agreement' remains on the table. It fulfils the 3 EU principles, it is fair, and it already has the support of many. It provides a solid basis for agreement. But as I said, I am ready to accept any other document, provided that it fulfils the 3 EU principles and gathers the necessary cross-party political support.

The situation is very simple. Time is running out for the political leaders to meet their obligations to the citizens of this country. They know what is required. I have made it clear, Brussels has made it clear.

I will meet the political leaders individually in the first half of next week. I hope they can inform me that they have reached an agreement.

As High Representative and EU Special Representative there are limits to what I can do for you when it comes to meeting the requirements of EU membership. However, I am willing to help those who are ready to help themselves. If there is genuine political will on all sides to work and reach an agreement, I am happy to facilitate this", Lajčák said.


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (October 7,2007) - A member of the Bosnian Presidency Dr Haris Silajdžić had a meeting with Dimitri Rupel, the Slovenian Foreign Affairs Minister.The main topic of conversation was the reform of police structures in Bosnia – as a precondition for initialing the Stabilization and Association Agreement with the European Union.

The Slovenian Foreign Affairs Minister Rupel stated that the signed Protocol on Police Reform was a step forward, and he expressed hope that the Agreement would be signed within the timelines set by the European Union.

Bosnian Presidency Member Dr Haris Silajdžić asked Slovenian Foreign Minister Rupel to explain to his colleagues in the European Union, as he said, all the advantages of that Protocol on Police Reform in Bosnia, as well as the circumstances under which it was achieved.

Rupel stressed out that Slovenia stood for all western Balkan countries to become a part of the European Union. He particularly underlined that solving the Kosovo issue could not, in any way, influence the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Bosnia.


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (October 7,2007) - The International Community's High Representative and EU Special Representative in Bosnia, Miroslav Lajcak, visited Moscow where he met with the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Genadievic Titov.

Discussions focused on the current political situation in Bosnia and the country's progress in terms of stability, economic development and the forthcoming meeting of the Peace Implementation Council.

The High Representative Lajcak updated the Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Titov on key reform issues, most notably police reform. The Russian Deputy Foreign Minister expressed the Russian Government's support for Lajcak's reform efforts in Bosnia.

Lajcak and Titov agreed that the reforms linked to EU integration represent the best strategy for Bosnia's development.

"The International Community's priority is to make Bosnia a stable, prosperous and modern European state", said the International Community's High Representative and EU Special Representative in Bosnia Miroslav Lajcak.

Russia is a key member of the Peace Implementation Council Steering Board (PIC). Lajcak outlined the positive role that Russia has played in Bosnia 's development and that Russia's support is essential if the reform agenda in Bosnia is to succeed.

Lajcak's visit to Moscow is first in the series of visits to capitals of key PIC members to brief them of the Bosnia's progress ahead of the Peace Implementation Council meeting to take place on 30 and 31 October in the Bosnian capital Sarajevo.


SREBRENICA, Bosnia (October 7,2007) - The remains of more than 120 genocide victims have been exhumed from a mass grave in eastern Bosnia, a Bosnian forensic expert said.

"So far we have exhumed 19 complete and 105 incomplete skeletons," Murat Hurtic of Bosnia’s Missing Persons Commission said.

The grave, located outside the village of Zeleni Jadar, about 15 kilometres (10 miles) south of the eastern Bosnian town of Srebrenica, is thought to contain the remains of at least another 50 genocide victims, he said.

Some personal documents had also been uncovered from the burial site, which was discovered in September. The remains were crushed and compressed, proving they had been re-buried with bulldozers.

In the final months of the 1992-1995 Serbian aggression against Bosnia, the genocidal Serbian aggressor murdered some 10,000 Bosnian civilians in the eastern Bosnian town of Srebrenica - the single worst atrocity on Europe since World War II.

Most of their remains were buried in a large mass grave before being moved by the serbian aggressor in an attempt to cover up the crime.The Srebrenica massacre has been deemed by the UN war crimes tribunal and the International Court of Justice to have constituted genocide. Thousands of bodies of the genocide victims have been uncovered from about 60 mass graves around the eastern Bosnian town of Srebenica.

The main culprits for the genocide against Bosnians - former leaders of the Serbians living in Bosnia,Serbian war criminals Radovan Karadzic Ratko Mladic - still remain at large.


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (October 7,2007) - The Bosnian State Court has confirmed the indictment against Serbian war criminals Sreten Lazarevic (born in 1953), Dragan Stanojevic (1962), Mile Markovic (1952) and Slobodan Ostojic (1966), which charges them with having committed war crimes against Bosnian civilians on the territory of the eastern Bosnian town of Zvornik. The Bosnian State Prosecutor has announced that the four Serbian war criminals are at large.

According to the announcement, the indictment charges Serbian war criminals Lazarevic, Stanojevic, Markovic and Ostojic, as former members of the genocidal paramilitary formations of the Serbians living in Bosnia (VRS), with having comitted crimes against unlawfully detained Bosnian civilians from May 1992 to March 1993,during the Serbian aggression against Bosnia.

The indictment further alleges that Serbian war criminal Sreten Lazarevic was commander of a concentration camp located in Zvornik.Serbian war criminals Stanojevic, Markovic and Ostojic were, allegedly, guards who injured unlawfully detained Bosnian civilians and stole their property.

"Novi Izvor" or "Ciglana" concentration camp, established by the genocidal Serbian aggressor in the premises of a former factory located in the eastern Bosnian town of Zvornik, was mentioned in Hague tribunal indictments against Serbian war criminals Vojsilav Seselj, Biljana Plavsic and Momcilo Krajisnik.


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (October 7,2007) - The Bosnian State Prosecutor has completed the presentation of its material evidence at the trial of Serbian war criminal Jadranko Palija, charged with having committed crimes against humanity and war crimes in the western bosnian town of Sanski Most. The defence is due to commence presenting its evidence on 10 October.

Palija, a former member of the genocidal paramilitary formations of the Serbians living in Bosnia (VRS), is accused of having participated in threatening, beating, arresting and taking to concentration camps of Bosnian and Croatian civilians, and in the killing and raping of two Bosnian women in the period from May 1992 until the end of the 1992-1995 Serbian aggression against Bosnia.

The indictment alleges that, on 31 May 1992, Palija and other Serbian aggressor's soldiers took part in the attack on Begici hamlet in Sanski Most. During this attack, village residents were detained and gathered in front of one house in the village. There, the men were separated from women. The men were then taken to the Vrhpolje bridge and forced to jump into the water while soldiers were shooting at them. 28 Bosnian civilians were murdered by the genocidal Serbian aggressor on that occasion.

The Prosecution has asked the Trial Chamber of the Bosnian State Court to admit the facts determined in the verdict against convicted Serbian war criminal Radoslav Brdjanin pronounced in The Hague, The verdict sentenced Brdjanin to 30 years imprisonment for crimes committed in Bosanska Krajina.

The ICTY verdicts indicates that "a broad and systematic attack was conducted by VRS, Territorial Defence, police forces and paramilitary formations against the Bosniak and Croat population in Bosanska Krajina".

The Bosnian State Prosecutor has asked that the facts established by the above verdict - that the Bosnian and Croatian civilians were taken by the Serbian aggressor to concentration camps, murdered and that their property was pillaged - he admitted as a determined fact in this case.

The Prosecutor considers that there is a link between Serbian war criminal Jadranko Palija and those facts because he was a member of the genocidal paramilitary formations of the Serbians living in Bosnia (VRS).

The Defence has objected to the eventual admission of the fact previously determined at some other trial considering that it "would violate the indictee's right to a fair trial".

"If the Court admits all the facts, it means that they have been proven beyond reasonable doubt and the indictee will not be given an opportunity to deny them," Pralija's defence attorney Ranko Dakic has said.

The Trial Chamber will announce its decision at a later stage.The Defence has also confirmed that it will examine 11 witnesses and present 12 pieces of material evidence before the Bosnian State Court. The process is expected to last for six working days.


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (October 7,2007) - The new U.S. Ambassador to Bosnia Charles English has arrived in Bosnia. During the presentation of credentials to the Bosnian Presidency, Ambassador English stated that the US was committed to helping Bosnia advance toward full integration with the European Union and NATO.

“I will do everything in my power to advance and deepen the close relationship the United States and Bosnia have so firmly established,” U.S. Ambassador said.

A career diplomat, Ambassador English most recently served as the Deputy Director of the Office of Career Development and Assignments in the Bureau of Human Resources in the U.S. State Department. Prior to that he served as Director of the Office of South Central Europe, managing relations with Bosnia, Croatia, Serbia, Macedonia, and Albania. His overseas assignments include, among others, serving as Deputy Chief of Mission in Zagreb, Croatia and as Counselor for Economic Affairs in Budapest, Hungary, US Embassy said.

The newly appointed Ambassador to Bosnia Charles English presented his credentials to the Bosnian Presidency Chairman Zeljko Komsic.

”The United States will continue supporting the Dayton Constitution and Bosnia's territorial integrity. The United States will support the leaders in Bosnia who are willing to work on the vision of a modern Bosnia”, Ambassador English said.

He said that Bosnia is at the crossroads. The country should go the way of the EU integrations because its people deserve that.

”Leaders need to make a clear choice and demonstrate their willingness to compromise. The USA will help realize that goal. We will support your efforts in the process of achieving progress in the field of strengthening democratic structures, legislature and economy. People of Bosnia needs to have a safe and prosperous future”, the new U.S. Ambassador said.

”Our two countries are strategic partners. I am pleased that you have been appointed the Ambassador. Bosnia is specific and you know what it feels like to live in a country of variety”, the Bosnian President Zeljko Komsic said.

”Reconciliation process is long and hard. Citizens need to be patient. We will support the people willing to go the way of reconciliation and you are known to be such a leader. I hereby would like to congratulate you on the efforts and energy you put in for the future of Bosnia. I want to be your partner in those efforts”, Ambassador English said.

Prior to his appointment, Ambassador English served as the Deputy Director of the Office of Career Development and Assignments in the Bureau of Human Resources at the Department of State from 2006 to 2007. As Deputy Director, he was responsible for effecting the assignments of all members of the U.S. Foreign Service.

From 2003 to 2006, Ambassador English served as the Director of the Office of South Central European Affairs in the Bureau for European and Eurasian Affairs, where he was responsible for coordinating the State Department's approach to relations with countries in the Western Balkans. From 2002 to 2003, he served as the Director of the Office of European Union and Regional Affairs in the Bureau for European and Eurasian Affairs.

Ambassador English’s previous overseas postings include serving as Deputy Chief of Mission in Zagreb, Croatia from 1998 to 2001; as Embassy Counselor for Economic Affairs in Budapest, Hungary from 1992 to 1995; as Economic Officer in Athens, Greece from 1986 to 1988; and as Vice Consul/Economic Officer in Panama City, Panama from 1978 to 1980.

His previous domestic postings include serving as Director for Policy Coordination in the U.S. State Department's Bureau for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs from 1995 to 1998, where he coordinated efforts to promote police reform in Bosnia and Haiti; Special Assistant for Security Assistance and Arms Sales, and later Executive Assistant to the Under Secretary for International Security Affairs from 1989 to 1992; as Special Assistant to the Deputy Secretary from 1988 to 1989; and as an international financial economist in the Bureau for Economic and Business Affairs from 1982 to 1985.

Ambassador English received a Bachelor’s Degree from Princeton University and studied international economics at the graduate level at New York University. He is married to Patricia Espey-English and they have two children.