Friday, December 7, 2007


SREBRENICA, Bosnia (December 7,2007) - American actress and UNICEF Ambassador Mia Farrow visited yesterday the Genocide Memorial in the eastern Bosnian town of Srebrenica, where she placed flowers and met with the genocide survivors.

“We are passing trough the countries that experienced genocide and mass crimes and we feel compassion for them. In this way, we want to inform the public about the committed genocides worldwide, and by lighting the fire, we are expressing solidarity with the victims in order to point at the terrible events in Darfur and to remind the world about everything that is happening when we turn our heads away. Also, we are trying to call upon the International Community, especially the Government of China, the host of the next Olympic Games, to use their influence and ensure security for the civilians in Darfur before the beginning of the Games”, Farrow emphasized.

The Bosnian President Željko Komšić received the “Dream for Darfur” Organization representatives, led by UNICEF ambassador Mia Farrow.

She informed President Komšić about the activities of the “Dream for Darfur” Organization over the last couple of years.

Farrow stressed out that by coming to Bosnia, she and the other members of the Organization, wish to honor all the genocide and the mass crimes victims in Bosnia and the rest of the world. She expressed an expectation that the people that experienced the suffering and the genocide not so long ago, could best understand the suffering and the pain of the people in Darfur.

She announced that their Organization will organize an action for the genocide victims today, December 7, 2007. In front of the Eternal Fire monument in the Bosnian capital Sarajevo , they will light a symbolic Olympic baton.

President Komšić, comparing everything that Bosnia had gone trough, expressed a deep understanding for the pain and the suffering of everybody, particularly the innocent ones – killed and starved children. Therefore, he called upon everyone in the world to provide a maximum and a prompt assistance to genocide victims in order to avoid situations like that in the future.

American actress and UNICEF Ambassador Mia Farrow lays a wreath of flowers on the Genocide Memorial in the eastern Bosnian town of Srebrenica where the genocidal Serbian aggressor mass murdered 10,000 Bosnian civilians in July 1995,during the Serbian aggression against Bosnia.

Famous Hollywood actress and UNICEF Ambassador Mia Farrow (C) prays with relatives of genocide victims from the eastern Bosnian town of Srebrenica.In July 1995 the genocidal Serbian aggressor mass murdered 10,000 Bosnian civilians from Srebrenica.


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (December 7,2007) – The Austrian Minister of European and Foreign Affairs Ursula Plassnik welcomed the initialing of the Stabilisation and Association Agreement (SAA) between Bosnia and the European Union. She stated that it is a joyful improvement of relations between the EU and the West Balkan countries.

”The EU has now entered the zone of agreement with all the Balkan countries. That is a decisive progress in the process of the region’s adjustments to the EU standards. In order to formally sign the agreement, politicians will need to put in effort in the implementation of reforms. A new élan needs to be brought in to the year of 2008. Then we will have the unbreakable contract-based liaison between the EU countries and the West Balkan countries,” she said.

Police Reform Implementation Action Plan is an encouraging sign showing that the leading political forces in Bosnia have not lost the EU future of their state from site, Plassnik said.

”Strengthening of the Bosnian state authority is a necessary pillar in the process of the country’s association to the EU. Strengthening of all the state structures is not by its own means a purpose. Fulfilling the police reform demands will lead to profit of the Bosnian citizens. Efficient police organs serve primarily and above all to the citizens," she said

"The European Union will keep its promise: if all the conditions are fulfilled, all the Blakan countries will become members of the Union. We know that the way to the EU is not simple. Austria will, as a friend and as a partner keep monitoring its neighboring region and will continue supporting it. Process of unification of Europe will not be complete without the Balkan countries”, Austrian Embassy to Bosnia announced.


SARAJEVO, Bosnia ( December 7,2007) - The Bosnian Presidency held the 28th regular session in the Bosnian capital Sarajevo.After the session, a member of the Bosnian Presidency Nebojša Radmanović addressed the press.

The Bosnian Presidency was pleased that Bosnia had initialed the Stabilization and Association Agreement with the European Union and has decided to send an invitation to all competent state institutions, insisting on fulfilling the remaining commitments urgently so that Bosnia could sign the Agreement as soon as possible – Radmanović said.

He also stated that the Bosnian Presidency, after the first rounds of talks with the political parties in Bosnia, decided to send a written invitation and request that all political parties in Bosnia, participating in the Bosnian State Parliament submit their proposals or a possibility of a participation in the parliamentary majority by December 12, as well as their proposals on a new Bosnian Prime Minister.

Radmanović said that at the following session of the Bosnian Presidency, which would be held on December 13, they should be making the decision about the new Bosnian Prime Minister.

The Bosnian Presidency also “decided to remind the Bosnian Council of Ministers about the delay in reaching the Budget for 2008”, said Radmanović and added that the Bosnian Presidency, according to the Bosnian Constitution, proposes the Budget, and the Council of Ministers is deciding on the Draft Budget and delivers it to the Presidency.

The Bosnian Presidency also examined several items in relation to the Bosnian foreign policy. Talking with the Bosnian Foreign Affairs Minister Sven Alkalaj, the Bosnian Presidency decided not to adopt individual proposal suggesting the Bosnian diplomatic network.

The Bosnian Ministry of Foreign Affairs was tasked to produce, within eight days, a comprehensive situation analysis in the existing diplomatic network, in the sense of rationalization, with clear proposals where to reduce and abolish and where to open new embassies, also with the deadline proposals for completing the work.

The Bosnian Presidency has also accepted the Agreement with the Swedish Government supporting the Bosnian public administration project.


SOKOLAC, Bosnia ( December 7,2007) - International forces in Bosnia staged a raid yesterday in Bosnia in the hunt for genocide suspect Radovan Karadzic.In a pre-dawn operation, troops from the European Union Force (EUFOR) and NATO searched the home of an supporter of former leader of the Serbians living in Bosnia,Serbian war criminal Radovan Karadzic.

Documents and a small quantity of ammunition were seized in a five-hour search of premises in the eastern Bosnian town of Sokolac owned by Mile Savcic, a former driver and bodyguard for Serbian war criminal Radovan Karadzic, said the European Union's peacekeeping mission in Bosnia.

It is believed that Savcic is associated with Serbian war criminal Radovan Karadzic's support network, EUFOR said in a statement.

The aim of the operation, which was launched at 5:30 am (0430 GMT), was to find material or information that could assist the UN's International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), it added.

Accused of genocide over the 1995 massacre of 10,000 Bosnian civilians in the eastern Bosnian town of Srebrenica, former leaders of the Serbians living in bosnia Radovan Karadzic and Ratko Mladic have been on the run from the UN war crimes tribunal for more than 12 years.

The ICTY Chief Prosecutor Carla Del Ponte said that most of the four remaining fugitives of The Hague-based court were hiding or being protected in the region and within reach of Serbia's authorities.

The four Serbian war criminals are former leaders of the Serbians living in Bosnia Ratko Mladic, Radovan Karadzic,Stojan Zupljanin and former leader of the Serbians living in Croatia Goran Hadzic.


SARAJEVO, Bosnia ( December 7,2007) - At a status conference held yesterday before the Bosnian State Court, the Defence teams of Serbian war criminals Zeljko Mejakic, Momcilo Gruban, Dusan Fustar and Dusko Knezevic have announced that they will invite former genocidal Serbian aggressor's soldiers who guarded the Omarska concentration camp to testify.

The Trial Chamber of the Bosnian State Court has set the date for the presentation of introductory remarks and the examination of the first witnesses.

"The Defence teams will have an opportunity to present their introductory remarks and evidence presentation plan to the Trial Chamber on Tuesday, December 11," said Trial Chamber chairman Saban Maksumic, adding that the examination of first witnesses might take place on "January 10 or 11, 2008".

Serbian war criminals Zeljko Mejakic, Momcilo Gruban, Dusan Fustar and Dusko Knezevic are charged with having participated in the rape, murder, torture and beating of Bosnian and Croatian civilians held in Omarska and Keraterm concentration camps in 1992,during the early stages of the Serbian aggression against Bosnia.

Serbian war criminal Zeljko Mejakic's Defence attorney Jovan Simic said that more than 50 witnesses would be examined, some of whom were "direct participants in some events". He reiterated that the number of witnesses could be smaller if the Bosnian State Prosecutor would revise the indictment.

"I would like to know why the Prosecution sticks to the indictment as it is now, because it is now clear to everybody that the indictees did not have access to food in Omarska. Should the prosecution decide to dismiss that charge of the indictment, we would reduce the number of our witnesses," Simic said.

Simic also said that the Defence witnesses will include former Omarska concentration camp guards.The Defence of Serbian war criminal Zeljko Mejakic will also invite some experts, who will present, as material evidence, "various orders and documents, which will show what Mejakic's competencies were".

The Defence teams of Serbian war criminals Dusan Fustar, Momcilo Gruban and Dusko Knezevic will present the Trial Chamber of the Bosnian State Court with their evidence presentation plans at a later stage.

The Bosnian State Prosecutor Peter Kidd pointed out that the Defence's proposals contain general topics and he does not know "what the witnesses will talk about".

"The Defence wants to invite a large number of witnesses, but they do not know what they are going to talk about. I consider that the Prosecution has the right to know what circumstances they will cover in their testimonies, in order to be prepared for cross-examination," Kidd explained.

The trial of Serbian war criminals Zeljko Mejakic, Momcilo Gruban, Dusan Fustar and Dusko Knezevic is due to continue before the Bosnian State Court on Tuesday, December 11.


SARAJEVO, Bosnia ( December 7,2007) - The Bosnian State Court accepted request by the Bosnian State Prosecutor for one-month extension of custody for Serbian war criminal Novak Djukic, who is suspected of having committed crimes against Bosnian civilians in the eastern Bosnian city of Tuzla,during the 1992-1995 Serbian aggression against Bosnia.

The Bosnian State Prosecutor considers that it has enough evidence to support the grounded suspicion that Djukic, former member of the genocidal paramilitary formations of the Serbians living in Bosnia (VRS), was responsible for the shelling of Tuzla centre, which killed 71 and wounded 150 Bosnian civilians on May 25, 1995.

"By the end of the year we shall be able to complete the investigation and file an indictment," said Bosnian State Prosecutor Mirsad Strika. He defended the custody extension request by arguing that the suspect might try to escape, destroy or conceal evidence, and influence the witnesses.

Strika said that, in addition to the plans to examine a few more witnesses, the Prosecution expects to receive court expert's findings, which will "deny the allegations that one grenade could not have killed so many people".

Nebojsa Pantic, Defence attorney of Serbian war criminal Novak Djukic, said that the Bosnian State Prosecutor had failed to prove that there are reasons for custody extension, adding that Serbian war criminal's actions and behaviour do not indicate that he intends to avoid criminal responsibility.


SARAJEVO, Bosnia ( December 7,2007) - In this still-divided society the "art of compromise," essential to democracy-building, does not come easily, noted the Head of the OSCE Mission to Bosnia, Douglas Davison in opening remarks to a regional conference on "Educational for All" in the Bosnian capital Sarajevo.

When people contemplate this state of affairs, he added, they sometimes notice that Bosnia's divisions are "both reflected and reinforced in its schools."

Instead of providing "an education for all," Davidson argued schools in Bosnia are still "largely divided along ethnic and religious lines." Parents tended to seek "to ensure their children are safely ensconced in schools where everyone, or almost everyone, is jut like them" and thus gain an "education for some."

Although preceding generations had mingled across ethnic lines, this had not been enough to prevent war. What does it portend, he asked, for a country whose citizens attend schools that "often instruct with books and materials that suggest to these citizens that they are not even living in that country"?

The realization was slowly spreading, though largely among the international community, he argued, that there is a need for "some kind of fundamental reform of education in Bosnia." In its absence the country's future as a "nation-state made up of many different kinds of people" living in relative harmony might be at risk.