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EU: Hadzic arrest "further important step" for Serb membership bid

Other News Materials 20 July 2011 15:46
The arrest of former Serbian Croat leader Goran Hadzic, the last fugitive from a United Nations war crimes tribunal, is "a further important step" for Serbia's European Union membership bid, the bloc's leaders said Wednesday.
EU: Hadzic arrest "further important step" for Serb membership bid

The arrest of former Serbian Croat leader Goran Hadzic, the last fugitive from a United Nations war crimes tribunal, is "a further important step" for Serbia's European Union membership bid, the bloc's leaders said Wednesday, DPA reported.

"This is a further important step for Serbia in realizing its European perspective and equally crucial for international justice," European Commission President, EU President Herman Van Rompuy and EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said in a joint statement.

In late May, Serbia arrested genocide-suspect Ratko Mladic, arguably the highest-profile fugitive from international justice involved in the 1990s Yugoslav conflicts.

"Following the capture of Ratko Mladic, this arrest sends a positive signal to the European Union and to Serbia's neighbours, but most of all on the rule of law in Serbia itself," Barroso, Van Rompuy and Ashton said.

"The Serbian nation is in the process of confronting the past and turning the page to a better European future," they added, urging Serbia to transfer Hadzic to the Hague-based UN court "without delay."

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