Euronews spoke to Carla del Ponte, Chief Prosecutor for the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia.
Frederic Bouchard, Euronews: During a decade you hunted constantly hunted and tried war criminals from the former Yugoslavia. What is your reaction to the arrest of Ratko Mladic?
Carla del Ponte:“It must be said that this morning I received very good news and I think it’s very important for international justice, it is a success for the Tribunal, the prosecuters office but it’s so important for the victims. “
Euronews: The trial of Radovan Karadzic resumes next Tuesday in The Hague. Should the two men now be tried together?
Carla del Ponte: Yes, I think so having seen that the charges carries the same points, it would be good to put the two together and bring Mladic and Karadzic in court at the same time, above all to avoid the repetition of evidence, which would be done if we have two separate trials. But that’s the judges decision.
Euronews: The arrest comes on the very day that the European Union foreign policy boss, Catherine Ashton visits Serbia. Do you think this isa lucky coincidence for the Serbian authorities? What do you think?
Carla del Ponte: I do not know if it’s a coincidence, but in any case what is true is that all ready for some time, under pressure from the European Union, Serbia has had expressed a strong political will to stop the two accused.
They’ve probably intensified their investigation and it has born fruit. I don’t think that it’s really a coincidence.
Euronews: Do you think that today the way is open for European Union membership for Serbia?
Carla del Ponte: Oh definitely, I am sure. I know that from my work as a prosecutor in The Hague and through my contacts with Brussels and with member states and particulary with the Netherlands. The Netherlands in particular have been very strict and very hard, they had to see Mladic brought to The Hague, so now the door is really open.
Euronews: Ms. Del Ponte, thank you very much.
It seems that today with the arrest of Ratko Mladic it seems that Serbia can see the light at the end of the tunnel to EU membership talks.