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Arrest clears way for Serbia's EU membership

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Arrest clears way for Serbia's EU membership


In Brussels there has been a positive reaction to news of Radovan Karadzic’s arrest. It is now expected that Serbia will be declared to be co-operating with the war crimes court in the Hague, a move opening the way for Serbia’s EU membership.

Javier Solana the EU foreign policy chief said: “I think it has been very well done by the Serbian authorities. Remember, the elections in Serbia? The presidential and parliamentarian elections took place not long ago and I think they have proven their will to co-operate fully with the international tribunal and that’s something I welcome very much.”

Vuk Jeremic, the Serbian minister for foreign affairs was equally upbeat: “The Serbian Government has a very ambitious European agenda. We’ve been in office or two weeks, we’re very serious about our future in the European Union. “We’ve demonstated this yesterday. We want to be a member of the European union. We want to be a cornerstone of peace. We want to be a regional player for regional stability. We’re truly committed to peace and the international rule of law, be it when it comes to our co-operation with the Hague tribunal or be it in our defence of our sovereignty over Kosovo, thank you.”

In Serbia though there is another view. Aleksandar Vucic, of the Serbian Radical Party says Radovan Karadzic is a national hero and warned of a strong backlash. The Russian Foreign Ministry said the trial of Radovan Karadzic must be “impartial”, accusing the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia of often demonstrating “bias”.

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