The arrest of the former Chief of the General Staff of the Republic of Serbian Army, General Ratko Mladic, and the preparation of his extradition to The Hague is the next stage of the “stripping before our eyes” Stories"...
The process of destruction of socialist Yugoslavia was barbaric and bloody. About why this happened, who the main scriptwriters of the tragedy of the Yugoslav peoples, were later written volumes of scientific research and mountains of journalistic materials, and at the beginning of 90 there were only emotions, unverified data about the victims of interethnic wars and the illusion of the possibility of building a just peace. The idea of creating a certain structure that would conduct investigations of war crimes during the collapse and partition of Yugoslavia seemed quite justified. The final decision on the need to create an international court has matured on the basis of the work of the commission of experts to analyze information on violations of the Geneva Conventions and other norms of humanitarian law during armed conflicts in the territory of the former Yugoslavia created by the UN Security Council in October 1992.
As early as May 1993, an International Tribunal was established on the basis of UN Security Council Resolutions No. 808 and 827 to investigate crimes from January 1 1991 until the date that the Security Council determines after the restoration of peace. Thanks to this very vague wording, the Tribunal has been working for many years “after the restoration of peace”. Deadlines for the completion of its activities are constantly postponed. Thus, according to UN Resolutions No. 1503, 1534, 1880, he had to complete the consideration of all cases of first instance, first by the end of 2004, then by 2008, then by the end of 2009.
16 December 2009. The UN Security Council Resolution No. 1900 recorded “the intention to extend the term of office of all permanent judges of the International Tribunal to 30 June 2010, and the term of office of the judges of the Appeal Court until 31 December 2012, either it will happen sooner. ” The regular extension of this institute has caused outrage of Russia, which 22 of December of 2010 abstained from voting on Resolution of the Council of Ministers No. 1966. This time it was supposed to establish an International Residual Mechanism, which should begin work on the completion of court cases of the ICTY 1 in July 2013, and finish the work before December 31 in the 2014 year. The document was voted 14 from 15 Security Council members.
As stated by the Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the UN, Vitaly Churkin, the tribunals (the ICTY and the International Tribunal for Rwanda) deliberately delay their activities. In addition, “no less questions arise about the objectivity of these courts. However, the Russian position still does not find support in the West. ” Nevertheless, Russia proceeds from the fact that this “resolution is the last one on the issue of the term of activity of the tribunals, and they will be completely folded by the end of 2014 of the year” (I).
However, in these terms it is hard to believe. ICTY Chairman Patrick Robinson has repeatedly stated that the case of the former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic, who was detained under very strange circumstances in 2008, will be completed no earlier than the end of 2012, and a probable appeal will be considered until February 2014. However, given that the processes last for several years, the dates in the case of Karadzic can be shifted clearly not in the direction of reducing them. These fears confirm the words of the press secretary of the Hague Tribunal, Nerma Jelačić: “The end dates of the Tribunal’s work relate only to Karadžić and“ do not apply to Ratko Mladic and Goran Hadžić ”(II). The ICTY chief prosecutor, Serge Bramerc, has repeatedly stated the same thing.
And what good luck! Just a few days before Brammer’s speech scheduled for 6 on June with a report on the activities of the Tribunal in the UN Security Council, where a final decision could be made to curtail this body, the judges added more work (and wages) for a few more years.
During the November visit (2010) to Belgrade, the ICTY prosecutor held one-on-one talks with Serbian President Boris Tadic, Prime Minister Mirko Cvetkovic and Chairman of the National Council for Cooperation with the Hague Tribunal, Rasim Ljaic, who assured the Hague prosecutor in full cooperation with the Tribunal . “Our country is conducting an intensive search for the remaining at large Ratko Mladić and Goran Hadžić, working on the successful completion of cooperation with the tribunal in The Hague,” Tadic said then. A more detailed conversation about the efforts made by Belgrade to catch the main wanted persons of the Tribunal, the ICTY chief prosecutor was held at the headquarters of the national state security service in the presence of the first leaders of all interested agencies, including Serbia’s military crimes prosecutor Vladimir Vukchevich .
The content of these negotiations has remained closed to the press, but the results of the “intensive searches,” as they say, are obvious. The arrest of 26 in May of Mladic in the village of Lazarevo, which is 70 km from Belgrade, was described by French President Nicolas Sarkozy as a “strong decision of Tadic”. Obviously, without the “hack” of the Serbian president, the detention of “the most wanted war criminal” would hardly have happened. The search for Mladic was indeed intensified after the visit of Bramerc. The changes in the scale and methods of “hunting” on Mladic were repeatedly stated by the Minister of the Interior of Serbia, Ivica Dacic. In particular, he stressed that the search for Mladić and Hadžić, who had previously been the exclusive prerogative of the Serbian state security, was actively involved by the Ministry of Internal Affairs, “which means greater control and surveillance of those suspected of supporting the pursued Serbian heroes” (III), as well as strengthening operational search activity.
According to the Serbian police, early in the morning of 26 in May, a reinforced police detachment arrived in the village of Lazarevo, where about two thousand people live and where search activities had not been conducted before, to conduct a targeted search. “Police officers simultaneously entered four houses belonging to relatives of Mladic. In one of them ... the police found the general, who, despite the early hour, was already awake. The general whispered the policeman his name and handed over two pistols, which he kept with him at the moment of detention. He lived in this village for about two years ”(IV). Later, answering journalists ’questions, why he didn’t use weapons, Mladic replied: "I did not want to kill the boys who came to take me."
The game "catch Ratko" since the announcement of its ICTY in June 1995, the war criminal has become international. Mladic is not only accused of war crimes during the war 1992-1995. on the territory of modern Bosnia and Herzegovina, but also use his figure as a condition for Serbia to join the European Union. The EU Commissioner for Enlargement Olli Rehn has repeatedly stated that the “Serbian issue” “will be decided solely on the basis of what assessments will be contained in the report of the ICTY chief prosecutor” (V).
The persistence with which the current leaders of Serbia aspire to the European Union is at least surprising, for the most part it is disappointing. This supranational organization, which was directly involved in planning and carrying out operations, first on the destruction of Yugoslavia, then Serbia as an integral sovereign state, turns out to be the desired goal with which Serbia truncated, humiliated, deprived of its historical relics (with the direct participation of the European Union) binds its future! I’m not even talking about the fact that the present situation of the European Union itself in the socio-economic respect is so unenviable that any sober-minded politician is unlikely to link the fate of his country with such an organization. Especially when you are exposed to conditions that demean national dignity, when an offer to open a “new page” of the country's history is conditioned by the extradition of a citizen to a dubious court.
Ratko Mladic was one of the central figures of the war in Bosnia. He is known far beyond the Balkans. The Daily Telegraph newspaper included him in the 30 list of famous modern generals, noting that those officers who conducted negotiations with him consider him a tactics genius (VI). Opponents feared him, and the Serbs worshiped for honesty, high professionalism, courage, courage, devotion to the motherland. For the Serbian national identity, the value of Mladić actually won, despite the NATO bombing, the war against the Muslim-Croat Federation of BiH, is huge. Hence, heightened attention to his figure from NATO and the EU.
Therefore, it is not by chance that the President of Serbia, Boris Tadic, at a press conference specially convened on the occasion of the arrest of Mladic, said: “Thus, we have completed a difficult period in our history and removed this burden from the shoulders of our people. Now a new page is opening, and we will work on the process of reconciliation in the region, ”and“ the completed investigation will raise the level of international confidence in Serbia. ” The rhetorical figure of the “burden of the people” is the factual recognition by Tadic of the collective guilt of the Serbs in that war, in the war of national liberation, in the war for their statehood, in the war, for the right to live on the land of their ancestors.
Apparently, in order to finally place Brussels towards Serbia, Tadic emphasized that “an investigation is being conducted regarding the people who helped him (Mladić - EP) to hide from justice ... Everyone who helped Mladić will be brought to justice” (VII). I don’t know whether the EU’s efforts will be appreciated (Mladic’s arrest was timed to coincide with the visit of EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherine Ashton to Belgrade), but the fact that Mladic’s arrest is not the last condition for joining the EU is completely obvious. The next person involved is Goran Hadzic, followed by the recognition of Kosovo and the referendum in Vojvodina and much more.
For the current (pro-Western) Serbian leadership, it is vital that the forthcoming report of S. Bramertz to the UN Security Council help Belgrade to become a candidate for admission to the EU. As is known, Holland is the most ardent opponent of the rapprochement of Serbia with the EU, motivating their position solely by the fact that Ratko Mladić and Goran Hadzic are still not in the defendants ’den.
Whether to say about the reason for which to bury Mladic so strongly seek the Dutch? Few people know that the numerous victims in Srebrenica are directly connected with the irresponsible (cowardly, provocative - call it what you like) behavior of the Dutch peacekeepers, whose responsibility zone included this Muslim enclave in 1995 year. When Srebrenica responded to the numerous killings of Serbs by the armed forces under the leadership of Naser Oric, by the way, justified by the Tribunal’s decision, they surrounded Ratko Mladic’s troops, the Dutch military not only did nothing to prevent the conflict and protect the civilian population, but hastily left the enclave. In other words, for more than a decade and a half, the Netherlands has been trying to “write off” Mladić and his army. As for Orić, he was accused of shooting Serbs in the Srebrenica region during the 1992-1993 period and in the destruction of more than a dozen Serb villages. He received two years in prison and was released right in the courtroom after the sentence was read (he was sentenced to a term under investigation).
I am in no way going to justify the violence. The power of law must be that the offender, if proven guilty, is punished. Casus Mladic makes us think about global things, about the symbolism of what is happening, which in all respects fits into the organized humiliation of one people - the Serbs, one country - Serbia. The main accused in the course of all the proceedings of the ICTY were precisely the Serbs and, insisting on the capture of Mladić and Hadžić, the Court, it seems to me, wants to put a fat “anti-Serb” point in its activities.
During the 18 years of work, the ICTY conducted 144 lawsuits, most of which, or more precisely 94 (or 66% of all cases) against the Serbs. The 33 process was carried out against the Croats, eight against the Kosovo Albanians, seven against the Bosnian Muslims and two against the Macedonians. Of the 19 dead during the 16 investigation, there were Serbs, some of whom died under very strange circumstances, including former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic, whose guilt was never proven. In addition, from the 27 arrested heads of state, commanders, prime ministers, deputy prime ministers, defense ministers, and speakers of parliament, the overwhelming majority of Serbs are 19. The set of terms is especially impressive - a total of Serbs were sentenced to 904 years in prison, Croats - to 171 year, Muslims - to 39 years, Kosovo Albanians (with all their might, as Dick Marty proved, human organs) - to 19, Macedonians - to 12 years (viii).
No less impressive individual terms. For example, Goran Elisic, a guard of Muslim and Croat prisoners camp near Brčko in Bosnia and the former mayor of the Bosnian Prijedor, Milomir Stakić, were sentenced to 40 years of imprisonment. The army general of the Republika Srpska, Radislav Krstic, was sentenced to 46 years in prison, although he was later reduced to ten years. According to 30, the Lukichi brothers received the years, according to the wording, for crimes against Bosnian Muslims in Visegrad, a city located a few dozen kilometers from Sarajevo, not far from the Serbian border.
The imposition of such harsh sentences on the Serbs naturally raises questions. First, the adequacy of such terms of punishment, essentially equivalent to life imprisonment, the fault of the participants in the military conflict in the Balkans. Secondly, the equality of guilt of all participants in the bloody events. A classic example of the “double standards” of the Hague Tribunal is the case of Ramos Haradinaj, one of the commanders of the Kosovo Liberation Army, who became famous for his particular militant cruelty to Kosovo Serbs and citizens of other non-Albanian nationalities. Despite the serious crimes he committed, he was released from liability “for lack of evidence.” “In fact, the evidence disappeared along with the witnesses, including those from the Kosovo police service, whom Haradinai and his accomplices began to get rid of in the 1999 year” (IX). In general, as for the statistics on the liberated Albanians who committed atrocities in Kosovo, it is amazing. The most odious Albanian militants, on account of which hundreds of victims - Fatmir Limay, Isak Musliu, Idriz Balay and Ramus Haradinai - were acquitted.
The procedure for creating the ICTY (the Tribunal has the mandate of the UN Security Council, while classic international courts are created on the basis of an international treaty) not only raises many questions and fair criticism, but also reveals the essence of interest in this body. As one of the recognized experts on this issue, Alexander Mezyaev, notes, “the creation of a legal body by signing an international agreement provides for taking into account the interests of all its participants, and the states whose interests are not taken into account in the agreement are not covered by the provisions of the agreement. While the resolutions of the UN Security Council are based on the will of only a few states. The fact that the creators of the tribunal deliberately sought to exclude universal participation in decision-making is also indicated by the fact that the issue was not submitted for discussion by the UN General Assembly - the body where all Member States are represented ”(X).
Indeed, the UN Security Council does not have the authority to establish international judicial bodies, since Not a single article of the UN Charter, including the articles of Chapter VII, contains an indication of the right of the Security Council to establish international tribunals, as well as any judicial bodies. In other words, in accordance with the generally accepted principle of law: “No one can transfer more rights to another than he has himself”, the UN Security Council, not being a judicial body and having no judicial powers, has no right to vest other institutions with these competencies.
In addition, the UN, according to the Statutes (Art. 2, para. 7), cannot interfere with the exclusive competence of states. At the same time, the Security Council Resolution No. 827 violated the principle of sovereignty and created a body that is called upon to judge individuals - citizens of UN member states. On top of this, the UN Security Council violated the provision of Article 14 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (1966), which enshrined the right of every person to be tried by a court established by law. Based on the UN Security Council Resolution, all citizens of the countries of the former Yugoslavia were deprived of this right. Thus, the creation of the ICTY by the UN Security Council violated the fundamental principles and norms of international law, which means that any decisions of this illegally created body are not legally binding.
In fairness, we present the arguments of the defenders of the Tribunal. One of the most common is the assertion that the UN Security Council had the right to create international tribunals on the basis of Article 29 of the UN Charter, which provides for the Security Council to "establish such subsidiary bodies as it finds necessary to perform its functions." However, this argument is powerless. The fact is that a judicial body in principle cannot be a subsidiary body of a political institution, and it is abundantly clear that the creation of a judicial body of the 29 article is not provided for.
As for the argument that the ICTY, regardless of the legal justification for its creation, has become a legal authority, since It was recognized by all states, including the states of the former Yugoslavia, and it does not stand up to scrutiny. Firstly, not all countries recognized the legality of the creation of the ICTY. For example, India, Mexico, the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (before its collapse) and a number of other states continue to declare their protests about the legal validity of the creation and activities of the ICTY. Secondly, tacit recognition of an unlawful act does not make it legal (XI).
So why was the Tribunal created? According to the overwhelming majority of scholars, “The Tribunal is pursuing an exclusively political goal - to confirm the guilt of only one people in all the wars of the last Balkan crisis, and therefore to justify NATO aggression against Yugoslavia in 1999, to legitimize its actions. The Tribunal’s many years of activity create an inadequate understanding of the participants in the Balkan conflict and the events that have taken place in the world community. The tribunal was created to rewrite the history of the collapse of Yugoslavia, to change the nature of military clashes, shifting responsibility for all the crimes that had taken place in the Balkans since the beginning of the 1990, to one people - the Serbs (I singled out - EP). That is why the number of convicted Serbs is so great ”(XII).
Today we have a lot of evidence of dependence and partiality of the court, prejudice of judges, investigators and prosecutors. Non-objectivity is manifested both in the trial procedure and in work with the accused, witnesses, and scientific experts. Among the receptions of judicial officials are the involvement of false witnesses, the use of second-hand evidence, the restriction of the ability of experts (no records can be used) and defense witnesses (if you don’t like your performance, they go to yes or no answers), false testimony protection , assistance to prosecution witnesses, appearing in testimony that the witnesses did not speak, keeping witnesses' names secret even against their will, so that they could not prepare for defense and interrogation, work with witnesses on fabrication testimony and more (XIII). About the lack of the necessary professionalism of the investigating authorities of the Tribunal, the former ICTY Prosecutor (XIV) wrote in her sensational book about the blatant incompetence.
Among the main violations in the activities of the ICTY, the experts also cite the denial of the right to defend in person, the forced appointment of lawyers, the holding of an inabsentia court, violation of the presumption of innocence principle, violation of the principle of equality of parties, violation of the principle of legal certainty, violation of the principle of prohibition to retroactive application of law, violation of the principle of independence and impartiality of the court. In addition, the Tribunal manipulates statistical data, uses unchecked and inaccurate statistical-demographic constructions, fitting them to the previously required result ...
Why all these manipulations?
First, the Tribunal became a platform for the historical humiliation of the constituent people of Yugoslavia - the Serbs seeking to preserve their national core on the wreckage of the country they had created throughout the twentieth century. Secondly, the ICTY performs the most “preventive” function for the West: the Tribunal, focusing the world’s attention on the crimes of the Balkan peoples, and above all the Serbs, removed the sword of punishment from Themis from those who had created a humanitarian catastrophe unprecedented in the south since World War II Europe in 1999 year. They are judged in order not to be tried! Here are some facts.
During the 78 days of aggression, NATO aircraft launched 2300 rocket and bomb strikes at 995 facilities in Serbia and Montenegro, using prohibited types of ammunition with radioactive impurities, mainly depleted uranium (U-238), as well as cluster bombs. A total of 23 thousands of bombs and missiles, weighing, according to one data, more than 25 thousand tons (XV), on the other - 79 thousand tons (XVI), including the 152 container with cluster bombs, were dropped on Yugoslavia.
The bombing of oil refineries and petrochemical plants led to the fall of black acid rain. Oil, oil products and toxic substances hit the water system of Yugoslavia and other Balkan countries. During the bombing of the territory of Yugoslavia, about 2 thousand civilians were killed, 7 thousand were injured, and 30% of them were children (XVII). The final amount of damage that was caused to industrial, transport and civilian facilities of the FRY has not yet been named. According to various estimates, it was measured by a sum from 50 to 200 billion dollars. About 200 industrial enterprises, oil storages, energy facilities, infrastructure facilities, including 82 railway and road bridges, eight power stations, seven railway stations, six airfields, many roads, 20 television broadcasters and relays were destroyed or seriously damaged , a large number of television and radio stations. About 90 historical and architectural monuments, two thousand school buildings, 35 faculties of universities, more than 20 hospitals were destroyed. More than 40 thous. Residential buildings were destroyed or damaged. Two million people from the 8-million population of the state were deprived of the basic means of living.
And that is not all! Bombing strikes, which were inflicted, as now with the bombings of Libya, "in order to protect the civilian population," caused an avalanche of refugees from Kosovo. If in 1998, during military clashes between militants and the Yugoslav Peoples Army, thousands of people, mostly women and children, left the territory of the region, then, with the beginning of NATO aggression, according to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, 170 thousand Albanians, 790 Thousands of Serbs, as well as Roma, Adygei, Muslims became refugees. According to the most optimistic estimates, the NATO aggression caused the displacement within the FRY of more than one million people (XVIII).
So who should be judged?
And one more - extremely characteristic - fact. Throughout the entire Holy Week of 1999, and especially on the day of Holy Pascha according to the Orthodox calendar, the British and American military aircraft continued to attack the Serbs. On some bombs that were dropped by British pilots, it was painted with the words: “Happy Easter!” Even the most ardent supporters of the Tribunal must understand why it was created and whose interests it protects.
I will make one more guess. The ongoing "humanitarian intervention" of the NATO countries in Libya is in dire need of an information cover. It is necessary to divert public attention from destruction as a result of the bombing of infrastructure and civilian objects, and the killing of civilians, including children. We must judge the other in order not to be judged. Not only the arrest of Mladic, but also the haste with which the decision was made to extradite him to The Hague, despite the obvious health problems of the 69-year-old general, is indirectly related to the "Libyan factor." Indicative is the reaction of NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen, who was one of the first to welcome the detention of Mladić. And official London called this event "historic."
Belgrade is in a hurry (or in a hurry) to take Mladić to The Hague. On May 27, the very next day after the arrest, a Belgrade court allowed the deportation of Radko Mladic. Agence France Presse referring to the detainee’s lawyer, Miloš Šalic, reported that “Mladic’s state of health does not prevent his extradition to The Hague, he is transportable.” Although the defense of Mladic intends to appeal, arguing that the general is unable to participate in the work of the tribunal due to poor health (XIX). If Mladic is still transferred to the ICTY, then, according to lawyers, direct meetings on his case can begin no earlier than in a year and a half (XX).
All haste is explained by the sharply negative reaction of a significant part of the population both in Serbia itself and in the Republika Srpska. The news of the arrest of Mladic has already sparked mass protests by supporters of the former general in a number of Serbian cities - Novi Sad, Kraljevo, Zrenjanin, Arandjelovac, Chacak. In Belgrade, several hundred people attempted to gather for a rally under the slogan “Mladic Hero”, but the police prevented the rally. Dozens of people were detained. The protesters called the arrest of Mladic "shameful" and called on supporters of the former military leader to protest against the "occupation of Serbia by Washington and Brussels" (XXI). According to a survey conducted by the Viesti newspaper, 75% of the population of Serbia (XXII) supports it.
A wave of protests over the detention of Ratko Mladic has reached Russia. For the first time in the history of relations between our countries on the night of 27 in May, bottles of black paint flew to the Serbian embassy. The first counselor at the embassy, Boris Sekvich, only said: “I can only confirm that it was” (XXIII).
In the Republika Srpska, the main rally in support of Mladić is scheduled for Tuesday 31 in May in the capital of RS, Banja Luka, and on Sunday 30 in May it is planned to hold a protest action in the town of Kalinovik. accused by the ICTY. Most RS politicians also condemned the arrest of Mladić. At the same time, the official authorities of the Republika Srpska stated that they perceived the arrest of Mladić as fulfilling international obligations under the Dayton Peace Agreement of 1995 and expressed hope for a fair trial. According to RS President Milorad Dodik, the authorities of the Republika Srpska have never acted and will not advocate for those who have committed war crimes, regardless of national or religious affiliation (XXIV).
The Russian Federation also expressed the hope that the trial of the former Bosnian Serb leader Ratko Mladić would be fair and would not delay the work of the International Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (XXV) by the words of the Russian Foreign Ministry’s Commissioner for Human Rights, Democracy and the Rule of Law Konstantin Dolgov. . Although it is strange to hope for the fairness and impartiality of the organization, which, for 18 years, with regular constancy showed the exact opposite. It is possible, however, that there may be completely unforeseen circumstances that will not allow the Tribunal to make an unfair decision. God works in mysterious ways. In the meantime, the court machine spun in full swing. Mladic has not yet been delivered to The Hague, and the ICTY has already appointed the top three judges to conduct his case.
The presiding judge at the upcoming trial was Christoph Flügge from Germany. Apart from him, Alfons Ori (the Netherlands) and Bakone Moloto (South Africa) are in the top three. The judges immediately decided to allow the ICTY Prosecutor’s Office to amend the indictment against Mladic within seven days. Very soon we will see "justice" in action - to judge, so as not to be tried.