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Friday, 5 March 2004

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Source

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Narrative

SFOR

Nezavisne Novine

Eyewitnesses claim SFOR arrived on the crash site immediately

Omer and Ahmet Pehlic, residents of the village of Rotimlje, claim that SFOR soldiers arrived at the site one hour after the plane crashed. "They parked their two vehicles near my house and went to the scene," said Ahmet Pehlic, adding that SFOR troops banned him and his friend from climbing on the hill. They also said that an SFOR helicopter had buzzed over the area immediately after the crash. Other residents of the village confirmed their statements. Dave Sullivan, SFOR spokesperson, neither denied nor confirmed that SFOR soldiers found black boxes from the Macedonian plane before BiH investigators. Salko Begic, the Head of the State Commission for Investigating the Crash, said that the statement of these eyewitnesses was an important element in the investigation, adding that he would make an interview with these eyewitnesses. (Photo on page 2)

SFOR

Oslobodjenje

SFOR inspection in RS Telekom

SFOR members carried out an unannounced inspection of the Telekom Srpske premises in Banja Luka on Thursday. The inspection started at 10:30 and ended around 14:00 hours. SFOR stated that the aim of this inspection was collecting documentation and technical equipment that might be interesting to SFOR. SFOR added that it had announced the inspection to the RS MUP and all other relevant institutions. (p. 6)/The same in Dnevni avaz (p. 4), Jutarnje Novine (p. 3), Nezavisne Novine (p. 3), Slobodna Dalmacija (p. 8)/

SFOR

Dnevni avaz

Salko Begic, Head of the Commission Investigating the Crash of Macedonian Plane: Commssion does not know whereabout of French flight controllers

Salko Begic said that the commission did not know the whereabout of the French controllers who were on duty at Mostar airport when the Macedonian Governemnt's plane crashed. (Photo on page 4)

SFOR

Dnevni avaz

SFOR barred General Bahto from military service

On the same day when the BiH Federation Defense Minister issued a decision on the discharge of six Croat VF officers, he also issued another decision on the discharge of General Bahto from military service. "By the decision of COMSFOR dated 22 February 2003, Brigadier General Hamid Bahto is removed from the professional military service in the VF, and is barred from performing any military duty, or a civilian duty which is in relation with the military forces in BiH," reads the explanation of the decision. BG Bahto told Dnevni avaz that he was very disappointed with the decision, and added that he would use his right to appeal, despite the fact that he knew that it would be in vain. "This clearly shows that the international community is determined to remove form the service all Bosniac personnel that assumed important posts during the war. It is also interesting that the IC decided to remove me from the service now even though it is well-known that I was acquitted of charges for weapons smuggling," stated Bahto. (p. 12)

SFOR

Dani

Dave Sullivan: Let's not live in the past, let's live in the present

The statement Let's not live in the past , let's live in the present" made by Dave Sullivan, SFOR spokesperson, showed the disrespect of SFOR troops for the citizens of this country. In a colonialist manner, the Canadian officer humiliated the people of BiH, but also the people of Macedonia. (p.16)

SFOR

Slobodna Bosna

Was Boris Trajkovski killed by the French?! French radar at Mostar airport broke down three days before the crash

Slobodna Bosna raises numerous questions following the crash of the Macedonian plane near Mostar such as: Who informed Dragan Covic about the crash of the plane? Who informed the FBiH Ministry of Internal Affairs about the site of the crash? How come that the BiH Civil Aviation had the information about the last radiocontact between the French controller and the pilot given the fact that the French Contingent is in charge of the Air Traffic Control at Mostar Airport? Why did the Civil Aviation and not French SFOR soldiers informed the public about the accident? Why is a French military radar still at Mostar airport? Did French flight controllers speak with the pilot in French or English? Why did SFOR seal off a wrong location on the first day of the crash, preventing the local police and investigators from entering the area? Why did SFOR not inform the public about the crash on the first day? The French contingent had kept a military radar at Sarajevo airport for 12 years before removing it last year. The BiH authorities were forced to buy from a French company a radar for 14 million KM, which is covering only landing and take offs from the airport. They were not allowed to buy from Spanish or Italian companies a radar, which could have covered the entire air space above BiH. It seems that inexperienced French flight controllers communicated with the pilot in French even though the official language in this domain of communications is the English language. Members of the Macedonian Government, Barisa Colak, the BiH Minister for Security, Mladen Ivanic, BiH Foreign Minister, Medzida Kreso, a BiH prosecutor, Miroslav Nikolic, a FBiH Defence Minister, and Zlatko Miletic, FBiH Police Director, asked to French Colonel Biard at Mostar airport. He refused to hold an official meeting but held an unofficial one. Macedonian and BiH officials decided to form an investigation team and to shut SFOR out from its investigation, just as SFOR shut them out on the first day. Only then was the site of the crash found. SFOR allegations that the area where the plane crashed was mined appeared to be incorrect. (Photo on the front page and page 5)

SFOR

Dani

French flight controller without licence

The BiH authorities were informed immediately about the disappearance of the Macedonian plane from the radar in Split. However, SFOR has covered up information about the crash of the plane for hours, even though it knew that the plane disappeared from radar somewhere between Stolac and Mostar. A few years ago, SFOR introduced a new, more dangerous, direction for planes approaching Mostar airport. The French Air Traffic Control was navigating the plane in this direction and it must have known that the plane was approaching the airport at an altitude lower by 650 meters from the safety altitude. SFOR failed to find the plane during the first 24 hours of the search. The BiH Search and Rescue Team found the crash site the following day. Mirko Markovski, the pilot of the Macedonian plane, was an experienced pilot who also used to be a military pilot and who finished his pilot school at Mostar airport. Sources close to Dani claim that a 22-year old French flight controller navigated the plane even though he had no licence for this duty. Some local flight controllers were supposed to take the exam for the licence at Mostar airport but French officers did not let them. (p.43)

SFOR

Dnevni avaz

SFOR has not submitted documentation about incineration plants in Gornja Visca

As requested by the Tuzla Cantonal Directorate for the Protection of Environment, SFOR has submitted part of the documentation concerning the incineration plants at the damp site near the village of Gornja Visca. "However, we have not yet received all the documentation requested. The biggest obstacle in getting the full documentation lies in a fact that SFOR personnel changes too often, so that newcomers usually need two to three months of time to get familiar with this problem," stated the Director of the Environment Protection Directorate, Mirza Kesetovic. (p. 15)

SFOR

Oslobodjenje

SFOR detains Karadzic's minister Bogdan Subotic

On Wednesday night, SFOR arrested retired VRS General Bogdan Subotic in Banja Luka. SFOR's spokesperson Dave Sullivan stated on Thursday that Subotic had been detained for questioning on suspicion of supporting war crime indictees. He added that the operation had been done on the basis of information gathered during the questioning of Dragan Tesic Bato and Zeljko Jankovic Luna. General Bogdan Subotic was appointed RS Minister of Defense on 22 April 1992, and later he was the Advisor to the then RS President Mirko Sarovic for decorations awards. His name was added to the US and the EU Black List in May last year for providing financial support to war criminals. (p. 4-5)/The same in Dnevni avaz (p. 3), Jutarnje Novine (p. 3), Nezavisne Novine (p. 3), Dnevni List (p. 11), Slobodna Dalmacija (p. 8)/

AF IN BIH

Slobodna Bosna

Marina Pendes - personnel of the Yugoslav National Army

With the nomination of Marina Pendes for the future BiH Deputy Defense Minister, the HDZ leadership once again confirmed its commitment to entrusting the defense affairs exclusively to personnel trained by the former Yugoslav National Army. Just like a former Federation Defense Minister, Ante Jelavic, Pendes also received a scholarship from the YNA. She graduated electrical engineering at the Military Technical Faculty in Zagreb. According to her curriculum vitae, she worked in THE military industry until 1992. She is currently the Central Bosnian Cantonal Minister of Urban Planning, Reconstruction and Environment and the President of the Vitez HDZ Municipal Board. Her activities during the war not included in her CV include deployment in the HVO Mililtary-Iintelligence Service in the Central Bosnia operational zone, when General Ivica Zeko, also a former YNA officer, was the Head of this service. Pendes allegedly left the base in Stojkovici near Novi Travnik at the request of Zeko, after he had accused her of espionage. It seems that Marina Pendes continued espionage activities after the war, when, as a confidant of the Croat secret services, she worked in the Post Office in Vitez, where she ran an illegal wiretapping center. This wiretapping office was inspected by SFOR several times in 1999. There is speculation that her signature was found on some of the documents seized by SFOR. It is not known whether Pendes mentioned her organizational skills in the CV that she had sent to Adnan Terzic, Chair of the Council of Ministers. As the President of the Organization Board, she organized a grand reception to celebrate the acquittal of brothers Zoran and Mirjan Kupreskic and their relative Vlatko Kupreskic by the Hague Tribunal. (Photo on page 26)

AF IN BIH

Slobodna Bosna

Defense Minister, Dragomir Dumic, was never in the army because he was pronounced unfit for military service

Dragomir Dumic is neither competent to deal with military issues nor has any experience in it whatsoever. He does not have the minimum knowledge about these issues and he never completed the basic military training. Dumic was never in the Yugoslav National Army. Before the war, when Dumic was young and when he was to be drafted into the YNA in Sarajevo, he was pronounced unfit for military service. It would be advisable at least to teach Dumic, the new Defense Minister and a possible BiH representative in NATO, about military training so that he does not disgrace BiH at meetings with international military officials. (Photo on page 27)

BIH - MEDIA

Slobodna Bosna

US State Department: Dnevni avaz controlled by the SDA criminalises independent media

According to the US State Department's report for 2003, the police in BiH is violating human rights, the freedom of media is in jeopardy, the co-operation with the Hague Tribunal is poor, the judiciary is under the influence of political parties. According to the report, Dnevni avaz is the daily newspaper with the biggest circulation and with good connections with certain members of the SDA and others advocating Bosniac-Moslem interests. (Photo on page 46)

BIH - PARTIES

Dani

Dani lists 10 most powerful residents of Sarajevo

According to Dani, the 10 most powerful residents of Sarajevo are: Hasan Cengic, a deputy in the BIH Parliament and a wartime BiH Army Logistic Chief; Hilmo Selimovic, the Sarajevo Brewery Director; Bakir Izetbegovic, a deputy in the FBiH Parliament and an SDA Vice President; Reisu-l-ulema Mustafa Efendi Ceric; Haris Silajdzic, the founder of the Party for BiH; Zlatko Miletic, Federation Police Director; Naser Keljmendi, a businessman from Kosovo with strong links with the underground; Nihad Imamovic, the Director of the ASA Company and the owner of several auto companies; Sefik Lojo, the Sarajevo Tobacco Factory Director; and Fahrudin Radoncic, the owner of Dnevni avaz. (p.18)

BIH - PARTIES

Dnevni avaz

Beriz Belkic: OHR and Oja must report to the BiH Parliament (Front-page story)

Beriz Belkic, a deputy in the BiH Parliament, said that the reforms in BiH were not transparent enough. He added that the OHR and the High Judicial and Prosecutorial Councils must report to the BiH Parliament on the reform of the judiciary. Commenting on the statement made by Paddy Ashdown before the UN Security Council that some groups of people had launched a campaign against the independent judiciary, Sefik Dzaferovic, the SDA General Secretary, said that requests for the equal representation of all constituent peoples in the judiciary were, in fact, requests for respect for the BiH Constitution and not a campaign against the independent judiciary. He emphasised that the Bosniacs were not equally represented in the judiciary. Mirnes Ajanovic, the President of the BOSS, accused Ashdown and international officials in BiH of disrespecting the decision on the constituent status of all three peoples throughout BiH. (Photo on the front page and page 2)

BIH - UN

Dnevni avaz

Request for the handover of part of the authority of the HR to BiH authorities supported

Adnan Terzic, Chair of the BiH Council of Ministers, asked the UN Security Council to support BiH in its efforts to become a credible candidate for the membership of the Partnership for Peace this year and join NATO by 2009. Terzic said that all 15 members of the Security Council had accepted his report and the report by the HR for BiH with a certain dose of optimism. "BiH has not for long been mentioned with such optimism in the UN. It has become a stabilizing factor in the region," said Terzic. He said that he had asked support for the HR's plan to hand over part of his authorities to the BiH authorities and to assist BiH authorities in structural reforms and the fight against organized crime. (Photo on page 2)

CRIME

Slobodna Bosna

Anes Sadikovic suspected of murdering Zihad Hasanovic

Slobodna Bosna learns from a reliable source that an Anes Sadikovic is suspected of murdering Zihad Hasanovic 20 days ago in Sarajevo. It is also known that the two of them were in conflict for weeks before the assassination. The police wanted to question Sadikovic after the murder, but was not able to do so because Sadikovic left Sarajevo and went to Turkey via Belgrade in the afternoon of the same day when Hasanovic had been murdered. His off-road vehicle was sent back to Sarajevo several days after and police experts found powder particles in it. However, Sadikovic family members explained that Sadikovic had bought that vehicle several months ago from SFOR, and that they did not know for what purpose SFOR had used that vehicle. Anyway, Sadikovic is still unavailable to BiH investigating bodies, and, according to certain information, he is still in Turkey. (p. 14)

FBIH - PARLIAMENT

Oslobodjenje

HDZ threatens to brake the partnership with SDA

"The HDZ will brake the partnership agreement with the SDA if in the next several days no agreement with this party is achieved about future joint work of the government. Since six HDZ ministers did not attend the session of the BiH Federation Government on Thursday, all decisions made at that session are illegitimate, and the HDZ will not implement them," reads the conclusion adopted at an extraordinary session of the HDZ Presidency on Thursday. The HDZ President, Barisa Colak, stated that the HDZ Presidency took a stance that serious violations of the agreement between the SDA and HDZ had occurred, and added that those violations had jeopardized the implementation of reforms in BiH. "We find all decisions adopted in the executive bodies illegitimate, and as such, they will not have support in the parliamentary procedures, nor will we support the implementation of those decisions in other institutions of power," said Colak. (p. 7)/The same in Jutarnje Novine (p. 4), Dnevni avaz (p. 5)/

FBIH - PARLIAMENT

Oslobodjenje

SDA Vice President Seada Palavric: "We will not meet requests from HDZ"

Yesterday night, The SDA Vice President, Seada Palavric, stated that the SDA would not meet the requests issued by the HDZ regarding the allocation of the leading positions in the Pensioners' and Disability Insurance and Road Directorate institutions. "Requests that the HDZ makes always aspire to take positions in institutions with a lot of funds available, and all other positions they leave to Bosniacs, Serbs and other peoples. Therefore, it is really high time that we had talks with HDZ representatives, because the HDZ cannot have both leading positions in these two institutions in the BiH Federation," said Palavric. She added that the SDA took a stance that a Bosniac should be the head of the Pensioners' and Disability Insurance, and that a Croat should be the head of the FBiH Road Directorate. However, the HDZ has a different opinion about the distribution of these two positions, and because of these arguments six Croat ministers did not attend the last session of the BiH Federation Government in Mostar yesterday. (p. 7)/The same in Jutarnje Novine (p. 4), Dnevni avaz (p. 5)/

FBIH - PARLIAMENT

Oslobodjenje

New crisis of FBiH Government because of the allocation of positions and problems in the army

The allocation of 14 positions in the BiH Federation institutions once again divided the Government at its session held on Thursday. The cause of the latest crisis lies in the allocation of the leading positions in the Road Directorate and the Pensioners' and Disability Insurance, which, according to the HDZ should both be given to the HDZ, while the SDA is of the opinion that one post should be theirs. However, the allocation of the positions is not the only problem that the BiH Federation Government has been dealing with. Another large problem of the Government concerns the issue of the regulations on soldiers' privileges, which Premier Hadzipasic has not yet signed. The HDZ officials do not know why the Premier has not signed it, and the Premier says that he did not sign the regulations in question because Defense Minister Nikolic did not fulfill the requirements agreed by the Government. "Minister Nikolic should have provided data about 33,506 military members, so that we could finally continue with reforms of defense," said Hadzipasic. He added that he had invited HVO members to have a meeting with him, and that he would then explain why he had not signed that regulation. (p. 7)

ICTY

Slobodna Bosna

Holbrooke said in June 1996: "Karadzic can forget about The Hague"

Aleksa Buha, RS wartime Minister of Foreign Affairs, said that he and Momcilo Krajisnik attended a meeting in Belgrade in summer 1996, at which Richard Holbrooke requested that Radovan Karadzic be banned from participating in political life. In return, charges against Karadzic would be withdrawn by the Hague Tribunal. Buha said that an agreement was reached that Karadzic fully disappear from political life, and, in return, the SDS would be allowed to run in the elections that year. "We started negotiations from this point. I have to admit that the content of the agreement does not say that charges against him would be withdrawn, and when the document was signed, I asked Holbrooke in French: 'What are you going to do now?' He waved with a paper on which we had already agreed and said: 'The Hague is past for Karadzic now'," said Buha. (Photo on page 10)

ICTY

Oslobodjenje

Arrest Karadzic and Mladic or face political and economic sanctions

The US Ambassador-at-Large for War Crimes Issues, Pierre Richard Prosper, called on deputies in the RS National Assembly to arrest Radovan Karadzic and Ratko Mladic, or the RS would face political and economic sanctions and would have no future. He said that the RS authorities had not co-operated with the Hague Tribunal, while the other countries in the region had. He also said that there were people who could solve this problem immediately, who could bring Karadzic and Mladic to justice, and convince them that it was in the interest of Serbs to defend themselves before the Hague Tribunal. Prosper sent a message that there was no collective responsibility and that the Serb people had to decide about whether they would live in the past or turn to a better future. "It is up to you to choose," Prosper said in his address to the deputies. According to Dnevni avaz, Prosper said that the US Govertnment expected the RS authorities to take concrete action to arrest Karadzic and Mladic. (Photo on page 6) /The same in Dnevni avaz (p. 3), Jutarnje Novine (p. 3), Dnevni List (p. 11), Nezavisne Novine (p. 5), Slobodna Dalmacija (p. 8)/

ICTY

Dnevni List

Priority of the US and SFOR is to arrest Karadzic and Mladic

Elizabeth Jones. US Assistant Secretary, Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs, reported to the US Congress on the situation in the Balkans yesterday. She said that the arrest and transfer of Radovan Karadzic and Ratko Mladic was a priority of the US and SFOR. Concerning BiH, Jones said that SFOR mission was about to end, and that the reduction of the troops to 7,000 in June 2004 was big progress compared to 1995, when there were 60,000 soldiers. (Photo on page 10)

INTELLIGENCE SERVICES

Nezavisne Novine

Vuksic to be banned from future state intelligence service

The BiH Parliament's Commission for investigating into the putsch case will demand that Ivan Vuksic, the removed FOSS Director, and other FOSS employees be banned from the future state intelligence service for violating human rights and wiretapping Munir Alibabic, the former FOSS Director. This ban is only one of the 13 conclusions and recommendations adopted by the commission. (p. 2)

INTELLIGENCE SERVICES

Slobodna Bosna

Vuksic was trying to arrange a meeting with Duspara for days!

Ivan Duspara, a former SNS Deputy Director, and his lawyer were exchanging glances yesterday at the trial of Ivan Vuksic, the former FOSS Director. They wanted to leave an impression that they were not concerned about the witness testimonies heard yesterday. However, Vuksic called Zeljko Siljeg, a former SNS Director, last week and asked him to arrange him a meeting with Duspara. Siljeg refused to do so, and Vuksic tried in vain to contact Duspara through other mediators. The choice of the witnesses that were called to testify on 18 March only suggest that so far Vuksic's lawyer has not presented solid evidence in Vuksic's defense. These are Veselko Buntic, Head of the Internal Control Office in FOSS, and his colleague, Marin Skutor, low-ranking SNS members, who were promoted in the FOSS thanks to Ivan Vuksic. Along with these two witnesses, the Defense will submit to the Trial Chamber all HR's decisions about removals of officials in the past three years. The rest of the article is the same as Oslobodjenje yesterday. (Photo on page 16)

INTELLIGENCE SERVICES

Dani

Kalman Kocsis, head of the expert commission for the reform of security and intelligence services: Law for Bosnian spies

Q: Perhaps the most sensitive issue is war crimes. Will OSA investigate into war crimes and will it resume the co-operation that FOSS had with the Hague Tribunal? A: This was one of the most controversial things in drafting the law on security and intelligence service. OSA will not conduct classic investigations. This job belongs to SIPA. Having in mind the past of this country, we assessed that this service should not be granted investigating powers. The job of this service can be described in three words: collection, analysis and distribution of intelligence data. This service will deal with war crimes, but its employees will not knock on anyone's door. The Law on SIPA is being reviewed and this agency will have to deal with war crimes. When it comes to co-operation with the Hague Tribunal, we will primarily have to take care that all the documents that FOSS collected are preserved in the process of the handover of authority. These documents have to be saved and secured. What I do not know exactly is what kind of solution will be reached. I only know that the transfer of documents to SIPA would slow down this process to a great extent. It is of crucial importance to have FOSS war crime experts and their knowledge in SIPA instead of amateurs who have never done this job. This is a special job. Even I, with all of my experience, would be an absolute beginner in this. Q: What is OSA exactly, an intelligence or a security service? And do its authorities include, for example, spying on Serbia and Montenegro and Croatia? A: In principle, it is a security service, despite the fact that it will also be called an intelligence service. All of its activities abroad will be in the service of internal security. The collection of intelligence data abroad is the most costly part of any intelligence service, and this service will not have much money. There is a need for such activities because the political leadership has to be informed of the situation in the region. According to my experience, there are two things that can make up for this. One of them is having open sources - and my service is using them to a great extent with good results. Another possibility is to have an analysis office, whereby financial difficulties would be overcome. (Photo on page 29)

POLICE/SBS

Dani

Assassin did not arrive from Zagreb

The local mafia and Asim Fazlic, Deputy Interpol Director, have realised that Miletic would not stop until they all end up behind bars, which is why they contracted a killer from Croatia to assassinate him. According to Slobodna Bosna, the Croatian Ministry of Internal Affairs recently informed their colleagues in BiH that a contract killer had arrived in BiH to assassinate Zlatko Miletic, the Federation Police Director. However, Zlatko Mehun, a spokesperson for the Croatian Police Director, Marijan Mlinaric, said that the Croatian MUP had not sent any similar information to the FBiH MUP. It does not mean that Miletic can rest assured that he is safe. On the contrary, the police have launched numerous operations to expose connections between mafia and political circles. Those afraid of this process will use all means necessary to protect themselves. (photo on page 8)

SCG

Slobodna Bosna

Momcilo Mandic threatens witnesses and judges in Belgrade!

A hearing of Drazen and Vladimir Mandic, the nephew and the son of Momcilo Mandic, accused of attempted murder of Mandic's former bodyguard and associate, Dejan Markovic, resumed before the District Court in Belgrade on Wednesday, 3 March 2004. During a short recess of the trial, Momcilo Mandic threatened Dejan Markovic in the court's hall, as well as the police inspector who was investigating this case. Momcilo Mandic made these threats in front on several witnesses, saying to Dejan Markovic that he had no idea how powerful Mandic was, and added that his Kostunica (Vojislav Kostunica, the new Prime Minister of Serbia) had regained power. It is believed that Mandic, thanks to his political connections and acquaintances, will be able to achieve acquittal for his son and his nephew. (p. 13-14)

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