Saturday, November 24, 2007


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (November 24,2007) – The Bosnian Human Rights and Refugees Minister Safet Halilovic stated at a press conference in the Bosnian capital Sarajevo that the Bosnian State Strategy for Implementation of the Annex 7 of the Dayton Agreement needs to be revised.

The Annex 7 concerns the return of all the refugees and displaced persons to their homes.The strategy needs to be revised, for 12 years past the signing of the Dayton Agreement, there is a lot more to be done. A lot more money is needed to achieve the final goal, which is that all the refugees and displaced persons return home. This is the first time that the issue of financial compensation for the persons whose property was destroyed is considered.

”The Bosnian Human Rights and Refugees Ministry and UNESCO are cooperating in the process of revising the Dayton Agreement Annex 7 Implementation Strategy, for the purpose of fulfilment of all the goals set. They will also cooperate with the department entity institutions and with the international organizations and civil sector representatives in Bosnia," Halilovic said.

"A special action plan for the revision of Strategy has been developed. It defines the way in which all the relevant institutions, both domestic and foreign, both governmental and non-governmental are involved in the process of finding a solution and taking all the measures necessary to implement the Annex 7. It is a very complex fact. Participation of about 70 governmental and non-governmental institutions has been planned”, Halilovic stated at a press conference.

”UNHCR remains dedicated to the supervision and offering support to the implementation of the Annex 7 of the Dayton Agreement. There is a lot more to be done prior to creating conditions for all Bosnian citizens to access the rights provided by the Annex 7”, the UNHCR official Hussaina Naveeda said.

After the 1992-1995 Serbian,Montenegrin and Croatian aggressions against Bosnia ended, Bosnia faced with about 2,2 million refugees and displaced persons, which makes about 55 per cent of the pre-war population, which counted 4,3 million people.

Of about 1,2 million apartment units in the private and social ownership, about 445.000 apartments were torn down during the war. Additional 211.000 apartments now have new owners.

Communal and social infrastructure was almost completely destroyed. About 4 per cent of the state territory was under mines.

An enormous number of the people killed, the number of veteran and civil invalids, destroyed and separated families are only some of the realities Bosnia needed to face with after signing of the Dayton Agreement in 1995.

Some UNHCR date states that the number of returnees registered so far is 1.025.000. Most of them, over a half, returned in the first three years after the war ended.

In the first years after signing of the Dayton Agreement, the return processes were coordinated by the International Community.

In 2002, the Bosnian Ministry of Human Rights and Refugees developed the Strategy for Implementation of the Annex 7 of the Dayton Agreement.The Strategy was adopted in 2003 and was the first frame document which defined the goals and needs of the action reform aimed to implement the reforms needed for implementation of one of the most important annexes of the Dayton Agreement.

”The Bosnian Ministry of Human Rights and Refugees is determined to cooperate with other relevant institutions, primarily with the UNHCR so that the Annex 7 is fully implemented. The process must not end until the last refugee or displaced person is back to his or her home”, Minister Safet Halilovic said.


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (November 24,2007) – The European Union Force in Bosnia (EUFOR) and NATO troops searched for leads on the Serbian most wanted war criminal, Radovan Karadzic, in homes of his supporters in Bosnia.

According to Major David Fielder, the spokesman for the European Union Force in Bosnia, troops began the search simultaneously at 5 a.m. yesterday at the homes of Serbian war criminal Radovan Karadzic's wife and children, looking for evidence that may reveal his whereabouts.

Former leaders of the Serbians living in Bosnia,Serbian war criminals Radovan Karadzic and Ratko Mladic were indited by the UN war Crimes tribunal for genocide and other crimes they committed in Bosnia during the 1992-1995 Serbian aggression against Bosnia.

Serbian war criminal Ratko Mladic is believed to be hiding in Serbia,protected by Serbia's fascist government.There have been no signs of Serbian war criminal Radovan Karadzic's location for years.

Due to a network of supporters who keep financing and otherwise facilitating their hiding, numerous bootless raids and manhunts have resulted the Serbian war criminals' evasion of justice for the last 11 years.

Yesterday’s action by international and local law enforcement forces demonstrates that combined action aimed at undermining the networks that support fugitive persons indicted for war crimes remains both relevant and necessary,” said the International Community's Principal Deputy High Representative in Bosnia Raffi Gregorian.

The Office of the International Community's High Representative in Bosnia (OHR) welcomed and fully supported the search of premises belonging to Serbian war criminal Radovan Karadzic's family members : Ljiljana Karadzic, Sonja Karadzic, Sasa Karadzic, Branislav Jovicevic and Ranko Cicovic.

Gregorian noted that Bosnia as well as OHR, the U.S. and EU have all enacted a variety of sanctions aimed at these persons because of their involvement in the support network.

"The capture of war crimes suspects through undermining their criminal support networks remains one of the key tasks for the International Community in Bosnia,” the Gregorian said.

“EUFOR’s and NATO’s roles here in Bosnia remain key for justice and for this country’s long term security and stability but equally important is the involvement of local law enforcement agencies,” he said.

Full cooperation with the ICTY remains a Dayton requirement and also has a direct bearing on Bosnia’s integration into Euro-Atlantic structures.

An Italian carabinieri serving with the European Union Force (EUFOR) in Bosnia guards the home of Ljiljana Zelen-Karadzic, the wife of former leader of the Serbians living in Bosnia,Serbian war criminal Radovan Karadzic, in his wartime stronghold of Pale, near the Bosnian capital Sarajevo, November 23, 2007.


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (November 24,2007) – The Europenan Union Force in Bosnia (EUFOR) announced that the Integrated Police Unit (IPU) based at Butmir Camp and which is one of the key components of EUFOR has received new personnel in the Headquarters from elements of the European Gendarmerie Force (EGF).

"EUFOR welcomes this enhancement to the IPU capabilities and now that the mandate has also been extended for another year EUFOR and Bosnia can look forward to continuing the progressive work towards European integration whilst ensuring the safe and stable environment," EUFOR said.

The EGF is a multinational initiative of Dutch, French, Italian, Portuguese and Spanish Police Forces with military status. Its aim is to reinforce International Community capabilities on police missions. This event strengthens the capability of the IPU that has been part of EUFOR since 1 January 2005 and adds to the nationalities that already provide manpower and equipment.

Next to the five EGF Member States already mentioned Hungary, Romania and Turkey also participate in the IPU by providing manpower and equipment essential to conducting IPU tasks.

As a crucial asset of EUFOR the IPU has inherent information gathering and preventative orientation capabilities, and, under EGF management, will continue to contribute to the safe and secure environment through assisting in the maintenance of public order and supporting the civilian implementation of the General Framework Agreement for Peace.

In particular, the IPU, upon request can support the Bosnian police in technical investigations and cooperate during execution of special activities. Furthermore the specialized element is capable to perform information gathering activities; crime analysis and investigation; search operations, document exploitation and escort operations.

The commander of the EUFOR IPU remains as Italian Carabinieri Colonel Giovanni Pietro Barbano who took over the role on 1 August 2007.


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (November 24,2007) – Bosnia has now become one of the most advanced European countries related to the introduction of an independent and highly-sophisticated system of telecommunications owned by one or several state institutions. This was stated in the Bosnian capital Sarajevo by the Head of Delegation of the European Commission to Bosnia Dimitris Kourkoulas who attended the ceremony of introduction of the SDH (Synchronous Digital Hierarchy) network in Bosnia, which connects the Bosnian security and judiciary institutions and the Bosnian law implementing agencies.

Kourkoulas talked about the project which was financed by the EU in the amount of 3,1 million Euros.

”Implementation of this project was a challenge in technical, legal and political sense”, Ambassador Kourkoulas said and added that it is also a proof that there is political will present in Bosnia and that the country can face all the challenges of the 21st century.

The Bosnian Civil Affairs Minister Sredoje Novic talked about this system ownd by CIPS (Citizen Identification Protection System).The system enables a fast, reliable and efficient data exchange, as well as the exchange of images, pictures and sound. He said that once the SDH network is implemented in full capacity, 400.000 Bosnian Marks will be saved. That is the same amount of money used of the expenses of renting the links from the telecom operators.

He added that 2,3 million Bosnian have been ensured by the Budget through the CIPS direction, aimed to implement the project.

Head of the CIPS Project Implementation Direction Sinisa Macan talked about the technical characteristics of the network. He emphasized that precise rules and procedures for the users of the network are yet to be determined.

He said that it is the wireless communication structured on the basis of the radio relay system which can be advanced.

The network is a closed system outside the Internet. It functions in certain spectrum of frequencies designed for that purpose.


DUBROVNIK, Croatia (November 24,2007) – The European Union will allocate 3.5 billion Euros as admission support to the states of the Southeastern Europe until 2011 in order to support their mutual cooperation and access to EU, declared an EC official at the Regional Forum in Dubrovnik,Croatia.

“European Commission (EC) is here to encourage the region to remain on the road of Euro-integrations”, said the deputy manager of the Direction of European Commission for Enlargement, Jan Truszczynski, at the Regional Economic Forum of Southeast Europe.

“There is no guarantee that matters in the region will go on better than before. But it is certain that it is a political priority of EU and EC”, he said.

At the Forum which was held for the fourth time, about 160 politicians are taking part, business people, and scientists from eight states of the region, over the 2 days discussed economic cooperation and adoption of standards for access to EU.

The participants of the Forum,held in Palace Hotel in Dubrovnik, were joined by presidents of Croatia, Stjepan Mesić; Albania, Barmi Topi, Montenegro, Filip Vujanović; Macedonia, Branko Crvenkovski; and the Bosnian President, Željko Komšić.

Bulgaria was represented by the Bulgarian Minister of Economy, Petar Dimitrov, and Romania by adviser of Romani's Prime Minister, Constantin Ciupage.

President of the Regional Economic Forum, Bogić Bogićević, expressed his hope that heads of the states, businessmen, and scientists will bring closer their stands on adoption of European standards at the Forum, envisaged as a non-institutional framework for exchange of ideas, which could contribute to speeding up of integration of the Southeastern Europe into the European Union.

“The states of the region have no alternative, therefore we say with good reason that EU is our common home”, said Bogićević.


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (November 24,2007) – NATO Secretary General informed the ambassadors of the NATO member states and ambassadors of the states who participate in the NATO programs on the decision that the Training Centre Butmir near the Bosnian capital Sarajevo is added to the NATO list of training centres.

The decision made the Butmir camp one of the 15 verified training centres which are a part of NATO’s Partnership for Peace Programme (PFP).

This will enable the development of the centre and participation in all kinds of activities of the civil and military representatives of 49 states.

In this way, Bosnia is considered a country capable of contributing the international peace and security.

The Bosnian Defence Ministry, initiated by the positive marks of NATO school based in Germany on professionalism and high standards achieved at the Butmir camp, started an initiative in July at NATO which resulted in signing of a memorandum on academic cooperation and a positive mark by the NATO Secretary General.

The Butmir Training Centre was formed in April 2005 through partnership of 12 countries, including the United States.

The camp’s mission is to ensure the internationally recognized training and education for the young officers based on the internationally accepted doctrine of peace support operations.