[JURIST] The European Union said Monday that it will only sign a new pre-membership aid and economic deal with Serbia when that country has demonstrated its cooperation with the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) [official website]. Carla Del Ponte [official profile], the ICTY chief prosecutor, will submit a report in the next few weeks to the EU suggesting whether she believes Serbia is fully cooperating with the ICTY. Del Ponte has discouraged agreements between Serbia and the EU before [JURIST report] based on Serbia's lack of progress in the capture and arrest of war crimes fugitive Ratko Mladic [ICTY backgrounder; JURIST news archive].
Previous negotiations were put on hold [JURIST report] for more than 13 months after Del Ponte determined Belgrade was not actively pursuing wanted fugitives. The EU and Serbia reopened membership talks after the Serbian government renewed efforts to capture Mladic which led to the arrest of his former intelligence officer, Zdravko Tolimir [JURIST report]. AP has more.