Institute for War and Peace Reporting | Giving Voice, Driving Change

'Warming' Relations Between The Tribunal And Republika Srpska

Tribunal Update 156: Last Week in The Hague (13-18 December 1999)

Dodik, accompanied by justice minister Milan Trbojevic, was expected to meet the Chief Prosecutor, her deputy and the Registrar of the Tribunal. The Office of the Prosecutor, which immediately began working out a new date for the visit that would be suitable for both sides, expressed hope that the visit would take place either next week or early next year.

The expected meeting between the RS and the Tribunal officials will take place in an atmosphere of "warming" between the two sides. Trbojevic announced last week that his government had already prepared a draft law on the cooperation with The Tribunal. That draft is now awaiting a parliamentary approval.

"There are signs that the Republika Srpska is cooperating more with the Tribunal", confirmed Deputy Prosecutor Graham Blewitt on Wednesday. He noted that the OTP had already made their requests for cooperation to the Republika Srpska when the Prosecutor was in Banja Luka last month and that it now expects Dodik to give answers to those requests.

"I don't think we have any fresh requests to make. And we are already seeing that positive things are happening in relations to the outlined requests."

For instance, the OTP had issued summons to the RS government for interviews with five or six people who could be potential witnesses at the trials in The Hague.

"The interviews are taking place this week in Banja Luka", said Blewitt who wouldn't go into details as to who the interviewed persons were or what investigations the interviews related to. According to the Bosnian media reports, the investigators are interviewing the RS Army officers. The UN Mission in Bosnia-Herzegovina announced that the arrival of investigators was organised with the full cooperation of the Serbian entity government.