Thursday, September 25, 2008


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (September 25,2008) - "The aim of Bosnia is the get the status of candidate for membership in the European Union (EU) till the end of 2010, and whether this will happen earlier will depend on disposal in EU to speed up the process of integration of all countries in the region, and also if Bosnia shows good result in this process".This was said yesterday by the Director of the Bosnian Directorate for European Integrations Osman Topcagic, talking to Bosnian diplomats within the Bosnian Ministry for Foreign Affairs diplomatic forum.

He pointed out that signing the Stabilisation and Association Agreement (SAA) between Bosnia and the EU means big obligations for all Bosnian state institutions, especially for the Bosnian Ministry for Foreign Affairs and Bosnian diplomatic networks.

Topcagic said that the first meeting of the temporary board for monitoring implementation of the Temporary Agreement on SAA should be held on October 7th.

When it comes to the forthcoming annual report of the EC on progress, Topcagic said that the deadline for taking results into consideration is October 3rd, and it is important to try to finalize some activities in order for the report to be more positive.


NEW YORK, UNITED NATIONS (September 25,2008) - On the second day of the visit to New York, asides the address before the UN General Assembly, the Bosnian President Haris Silajdzic held several bilateral meetings.

Silajdzic met with presidents of Islamic Republic of Iran, Palestine and Portugal along with Qatar Sheikh.

At the meeting with Iranian President Ahmadinejad, President Silajdzic thanked for the help Iran provided to the Bosnian people,during the 1992-1995 Serbian,Montenegrin and Croatian aggressions against Bosnia.

They talked about improvement of relations between the two friendly states and President Ahmadinejad invited Presidrnt Silajdzic to visit Iran.

Bosnian President Haris Silajdzic also met with Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas and talked about the political situation in Bosnia and Palestine. They concluded that Bosnia and Palestine are multicultural societies sharing some common experience and that the justice is important in order to reach peace and security.

During the meeting with Qatar Sheikh, Hammad bin Khalifa Al Thani, President Silajdzic stated that Bosnia has water resources for production of electric energy which are not exploited enough and expressed the need for investments in the country. Qatar Sheikh expressed the will to look into options of investing in Bosnia.

President Silajdzic also met with the President of Portugal, Anibal Antonio Cavaco Silva who stated that Portugal from the beginning supported Bosnia on its path towards the EU membership. They also talked about candidature of Bosnia for observing member of the UN Security Council in 2010/2011 and the candidature of Portugal for the member of UN Security Council for 2011/2012.

The Bosnian President Haris Silajdzic attended the reception organized by US president George Bush, for presidents of states with peace troops in Iraq and the reception organized by UN Secretary General Ban ki Moon for heads of states who attend the General Assembly,the Bosnian State Presidency said.


BRUSSELS, Belgium (September 25,2008) - The European Commission adopted today the strategic directions of EU financial assistance to Bosnia (Multi-annual Indicative Planning Document – MIPD) for the years 2008-2010.

This assistance to Bosnia aims to help the country, on its path towards the EU, enhance political reform and building up of democratic institutions, economic reform, and approximation to European Standards in sectors related to the introduction and implementation of EU legislation. A special component of the programme will finance cross-border cooperation. For the period 2008-2010, the overall indicative amount of the EU financial assistance to Bosnia – in the form of grants from the Community budget - is 269.9 million Euros.

Financial support provided under the Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance (IPA) aims at supporting Bosnia in its Stabilisation and Association process and preparing the country for future EU Accession. It reflects the priorities under the European Partnership, the assessment of the annual Progress Report, and the Stabilisation and Association Agreement (SAA) with the EU.

The main share of the budget is allocated to support activities under IPA Component I for Transition Assistance and Institution Building (254.5 million Euros). A smaller share will be allocated to IPA Component II for Cross-Border Cooperation activities (15.4 million Euros).

In more detail, the first political sub-component will focus on strengthening democratic institutions, constitutional reform, public administration reform, fiscal management, reform of the police and judiciary, fight against corruption, human rights and protection of minorities, returnees and vulnerable groups, civil society and media.

The second economic development sub-component will focus on improvement of the socio-economic situation of the country and its population supporting measures related to trade, employment, education and health, business environment and small and medium enterprises, macro-economic stabilisation, the quality of public spending, as well as regional development.

The third sub-component will finance actions to strengthen the ability of Bosnia to assume the obligations of EU membership by supporting the approximation to European Standards. The support will focus on the development and the implementation of strategies and policies to approximate to the European law (acquis) in the areas of internal market, sectoral policies and justice, freedom and security. The emphasis of the assistance will be placed on agriculture and rural development, transport, and energy. Examples of further supported sectors are environment, quality infrastructure, customs and taxation.

The component on "Cross-border cooperation" will support Bosnia's cross-border cooperation with its neighbouring countries, its participation in the Adriatic programme with Member States and in the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) transnational programmes "South East Europe" and " Mediterranean".

To ensure the maximum efficiency and effectiveness of the EU financial assistance the definition of the major areas of intervention and the type of actions to be financed has been closely coordinated with the international financial institutions active in Bosnia.


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (September 25,2008) - City of Sarajevo City Council adopted the decision on rewarding American film director Bill Carter with the recognition Honorary Citizen.

Bill Carter became friend of Sarajevo in the hardest time, during the 1992-1995 Serbian,Montenegrin and Croatian aggressions against Bosnia. And he, guided by the noblest principles, enabled spreading of truth about Sarajevo and its citizens during the siege.

He came to the Bosnian capital Sarajevo during the aggression and decided to stay in the town under siege. He joined the organization of the independent help and, sharing the destiny of Sarajevo citizens, delivered food and supplies to those that can not be reached by UN and NGOs.

Carter’s stories from war Sarajevo are recorded in his documentary film "Miss Sarajevo", from 1993. Executive producer of this film and music for this film was written by Bono Vox,the lead singer of the Irish rock band, U2.

Bill Carter held more than 50 lectures in universities such as Harvard, NYU, Boston College, and showing his film about the war in Bosnia. He helped for more than 1 500 tons of food to be delivered for the time when he worked as humanitarian worker.


KAMENICA, Bosnia (September 25,2008)- Bosnian forensic experts said yesterday they had unearthed the remains of 362 genocide victims of the 1995 Srebrenica massacre from a mass grave in eastern Bosnia.

Murat Hurtic of the Bosnian Commission For Missing Persons said documents recovered at the site showed the genocide victims were Bosnian civilians from Srebrenica, the eastern enclave that was under United Nations protection when it was overrun by the gemocidal Serbian fascist aggressor during the 1992-95 Serbian aggression against Bosnia.

Hurtic said the genocide victims were mass murdered at three locations near Srebrenica and transferred to Kamenica from the original graves three months after the execution.

"The bodies are well preserved because they had lain in clay before being transferred here," he said, standing on the edge of the muddy grave.

Hurtic said the findings unearthed included 145 complete bodies and 217 incomplete skeletal remains of the genocide victims.

The genocidal Serbian fascist aggressor first buried the bodies of the mass murdered Bosnian civilians near the execution sites but then dug many of them out with bulldozers and re-buried them in so-called "secondary" mass graves, in an attempt to hide the crime.

Bosnian experts believe there are more mass graves in the Kamenica area. In 2006, another grave in the valley yielded more than 1,000 body parts of the genocide victims, making it the biggest such site in Bosnia.

About 5,200 genocide victims of Europe's worst atrocity since World War Two have been identified through DNA analysis so far.


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (September 25,2008) - A group of six NGOs and members of the Bosnian business community organized a conference on reducing taxes in Bosnia.The conference was held in the Bosnian capital Sarajevo yesterday.

Participants of the conference were discussing the need to improve the business environment in Bosnia and advance reforms, especially in the tax system.

High taxes and contributions in combination with an inefficient, complex and time-consuming process of registering a business hinder economic growth, domestic production and the business surrounding in general, it was said.


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (September 25,2008) - The first Prosecution witness was examined yesterday before the Bosnian State Court at the trial of Serbian war criminals Vinko Kondic,Bosko Lukic and Marko Adamovic,in the absence of Serbian war criminal Vinko Kondic, who refused to appear at the hearing,without giving any "justification" for that.

"We have been informed by health service doctors that the indictee is mentally and physically capable of attending the trial. As usual, on the eve of this hearing he said that he was not able to attend due to his health state. The indictee will be given an audio recording of this hearing already today," Trial Chamber Chairwoman Jasmina Kosovic said.

The start of the trial of the three Serbian fascists, has been postponed several times due to Kondic's bad health.

The Bosnian state Prosecution examined a concentration camp survivor Fahrudin Cemal, as its first witness at the trial of three former members of the genocidal Serbian fascist aggressor's formations, charged with genocide and other war crimes committed against Bosnian civilians in the Bosnian town of Kljuc during the 1992-1995 Serbian aggression against Bosnia

"We have been informed by health service doctors that the indictee is mentally and physically capable of attending the trial. As usual, on the eve of this hearing he said that he was not able to attend due to his health state. The indictee will be given an audio recording of this hearing already today," Trial Chamber Chairwoman Jasmina Kosovic said.

The Bosnian State Prosecutor charges Kondic, Bosko Lukic and Marko Adamovic with having participated in organising a group of people and abetting them to commit genocide. The three indictees committed crime against humanity and war crimes in Kljuc municipality in the course of 1992.

The witness Fahrudin Cemal said that, on May 7, 1992 the genocidal Serbian fascist aggressor took over the local administration in Kljuc.

As indicated by Cemal, on May 28, 1992 members of the genocidal Serbian fascist aggressor;s formations detained him and other Bosnian civilians from Velagici, in Kljuc municipality, taking them to a school building then to a concentration camp in Stara Gradiska, where they stayed until "late June or early July".

"They took 30 or 40 of us from Stara Gradiska to the Manjaca concentration camp, where people from Kljuc, Doboj and Sanski Most had been held. The concentration camp was surrounded by wired fencing and a minefield. We were all tortured and beaten. This place was a scaffolding of crime," the witness said.

The witness further stated to have been taken from the Batkovic concentration camp,near the eastern Bosnian town of Bijeljina back to the Manjaca concentration camp in October 1993, adding that he was exchanged on mount Vlasic two days later.

The trial of Serbian war criminals Vinko Kondic,Bosko Lukic and Marko Adamovic is due to continue before the Bosnian State Court on Monday, September 29.


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (September 25,2008) - A pronouncement of the Verdict before the Section I for War crimes of the Bosnian State Court in the case of Serbian war criminal Sreten Lazarević and Others, has been scheduled for yomorrow,26 September 2008 starting at 12:00p.m. in courtroom 6,the Bosnian State Court said today.

On 5 October 2007, the Bosnian State Court confirmed an indictment which charges Serbian war criminals Sreten Lazarević, Dragan Stanojević, Mile Marković, and Slobodan Ostojić with the criminal offence of War Crimes against Bosnian civilians.

The Bosnian State Prosecutor charged Serbian war criminals Sreten Lazarevic, Dragan Stanojevic, Mile Markovic and Slobodan Ostojic, as members of the genocidal Serbian fascist aggressor's formations, with having participated in the detention and torture of Bosnian civilians from the eastern Bosnian town of Zvornik,during the 1992-1995 Serbian aggression against Bosnia.

The indictment states that Serbian war criminal Sreten Lazarevic was the commander of a concentration camp in Zvornik, in which Bosnian civilians were held by the, while Serbian war criminals Dragan Stanojevic, Mile Markovic and Slobodan Ostojic were detention camp guards.

According to the indictment on several occasions, Serbian war criminal Dragan Stanojević, in the capacity of the concentration camp guard, enabled groups of the genocidal Serbian fascist aggressor's soldiers to torture and abuse detained Bosnian civilians. The indictment states that in September 1992, Serbian war criminal Dragan Stanojević tortured one ninety year old detained Bosnian civilian.

The indictment further states that Serbian war criminal Mile Marković, in September 1992 in the building of DP Novi Izvor, together with another concentration camp guard, tortured one detained Bosnian civilian, beating him all over his body and forcing him to hold his arms in front of his face in order to prevent the blood from splashing around.

The also indictment states that, in the summer of 1992, Serbian war criminal Slobodan Ostojić in the building of DP Novi Izvor, together with an unidentified group of concentration camp guards, tortured two detained Bosnian civilians, for an alleged suspicion that they attempted to escape from the concentration camp.


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (September 25,2008) - The EU and the UN said yesterday they have donated three million Euros for the control and reduction of small arms and ammunition in Bosnia.

The project's goal is "to decrease the threat posed to human security by the large and uncontrolled presence of small arms, light weapons and ammunition in the country," a representative of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Bosnia Christine McNab said.

"There are some 100,000 pieces of small arms and between 25,000 and 30,000 tonnes of ammunition surplus to military requirements," she added.

The European Union will donate 2.7 million Euros, with the remainder given by the UNDP, which is to implement the project over the next 18 months.