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ICTY prosecutor says Serbian war crimes fugitive Mladic in Belgrade

[JURIST] International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) [official website; JURIST news archive] prosecutor Carla del Ponte [official profile] said Saturday that she believes that Bosnian war fugitive Ratko Mladic [ICTY backgrounder; JURIST news archive] "is in Serbia, in and around Belgrade". Del Ponte has been critical of Serbian efforts to catch Mladic, calling the failure to apprehend him "inexcusable"" [JURIST report] and urging the EU to hold off on membership talks with Serbia [JURIST report] largely for that reason. Del Ponte's statement comes shortly after proceedings started in the trial of eight former Serb policemen charged with hiding Mladic [JURIST report]. Several Serbian government ministers have resigned over the government's inability to bring the former military leader to justice.

Serbian President Boris Tadic [official website; BBC profile] insists, however, that he has "no information" on Mladic's location and that "there is a problem for our security services to locate all suspects, including Mladic." Mladic, the former head of the Bosnian Serb army, is wanted on war crimes charges in connection with the 1995 massacre of 8,000 Muslims during the siege of Srebrenica [BBC report; JURIST news archive]. AFP has more.

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