On April 15 SFOR detained Dragan Obrenovic, who is indicted for
war crimes by the International Criminal Tribunal for former Yugoslavia
(ICTY). He was processed and transferred to The Hague the same
Dragan Obrenovic is under sealed indictment for war crimes committed
between July and November 1995. During this time, acting as commander
of the Zvornik Brigades, he is accused of being responsible for
the extermination of thousands of Bosnian Muslim males, complicity
of genocide, violation of the laws and customs of war, crimes
against humanity and grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions
of 1949 including murder, torture and racial and religious persecutions.
"The action is another step in NATO's drive to arrest the
remaining war crime indictees. Each one sent to The Hague makes
it easier to build a lasting peace in the Balkans. There will
be no hiding place for anyone accused by the ICTY of these horrific
crimes. Let today's arrest serve as a warning to those with guilty
consciences. It is time to turn yourself in," said General
Secretary of NATO Lord Robertson during a press conference shortly
after the arrest.
He said that this action was undertaken in accordance with SFOR's
mandate that authorises detention operations for such persons.
It was within the mandate given to SFOR by the North Atlantic
Council under authority contained in the relevant United Nations
Security Council Resolutions.
The parties to the Dayton Peace Agreement remain responsible for
co-operating in the investigation and prosecution of war crimes
and other violations of international/humanitarian law. SFOR will
continue to do its part by carrying out its mandate in a firm
and even-handed manner.
"I should like to commend the SFOR troops and their commanders
for their courage, professionalism and dedication in carrying
out this action, which will contribute to the continued consolidation
of the peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina," said Lord Robertson.
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