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Dutch Say Serbia Not Cooperating With UN Tribunal


Ratko Mladic

Ratko Mladic

BRUSSELS (Reuters) -- Serbia has yet to demonstrate it is cooperating fully with the UN war crimes tribunal in seeking the arrest of former Bosnian Serb military commander Ratko Mladic, a top Dutch official has said.

Cooperation with the tribunal based in the Dutch city of the Hague is seen as key to unlocking Serbia's ultimate membership of the European Union.

"It's obvious, according to our view, there is no full cooperation," Dutch Foreign Minister, Maxime Verhagen, told reporters.

Mladic is the top remaining war crimes indictee at large. Verhagen would wait and see what a report by prosecutor Serg Brammertz for the UN Security Council concluded.

"As you know, for the Netherlands, full cooperation of Serbia is essential for the next step in the European integration of Serbia," Verhagen said.

"The most clear signal of full cooperation in our view is the handing over of the last person sought by the tribunal, which is of course Mladic, who is the main person who has to stand trial in this tribunal," Verhagen said.

The issue is particularly sensitive for the Netherlands because Mladic is charged with genocide over the massacre of some 7,000 Bosnian Muslims in Srebrenica in 1995, which Dutch UN peacekeepers stationed in the town were unable to prevent.
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