Voices from Russia

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

At UN Hearing, Serbian President Tomislav Nikolić Sez Yugoslav War Crimes Tribunal Guilty of Flagrant Violations of Human Rights

00 Serbian folk wisdom. 23.09.12


On Tuesday, the President of the UN General Assembly, former Serbian Minister of Foreign Affairs Vuk Jeremić, accused his critics of trying to intimidate and pressure him into cancelling a special meeting on international criminal justice boycotted by the USA and some of its allies. Jeremić set up the meeting last week, whilst serving as President of the Assembly, a largely-ceremonial, but high-profile, post. Critics of the event said Jeremić that organised it as an excuse to attack the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY)… an allegation Jeremić rejected. A spokesman for the American mission to the UN explained its decision to boycott the event by saying, “It’s an unbalanced, inflammatory, thematic debate … on the role of international criminal justice in reconciliation”.

Jordan and Canada also boycotted the event, whilst EU countries sent junior diplomats. A number of key officials from international organisations and tribunals, including the ICTY, International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR), and the International Criminal Court (ICC), chose not to attend. Without accusing any individual countries, Jeremić suggested that the 11 officials from the international organisations and tribunals didn’t attend due to outside pressure, adding that he, too, was under pressure to cancel the debate entirely, saying, “Unfortunately, these ladies and gentlemen refused to come to this debate. So, we worked with those who accepted, given that I wouldn’t balk under pressure to cancel what I believe is a debate on a critically-important topic. Somebody obviously thought that I could be embarrassed and intimidated into giving it (the debate) up”.

Jeremić said that the fact that the tone of the debate was more critical than supportive of the ICC, ICTY, ICTR, and other war crimes tribunals was because those who would’ve supported those courts chose not to attend the UN session. Serbian President Tomislav Nikolić was amongst those who spoke. He hammered away at the ICTY in a 45-minute speech to the assembly, telling participants, “The prosecution was favoured over the defence” and that the court was guilty of the “most flagrant violation of human rights”. Serbia and its ally Russia sharply criticised the tribunal over recent decisions to free two Croatian generals and a former Kosovo Albanian guerrilla commander.

Jeremić said that amongst those who avoided last week’s debate were the presidents of the ICC, ICTY, and ICTR, head of the UN Office of Legal Affairs Patricia O’Brien, head of Human Rights Watch Kenneth Roth, and former ICTY/ICTR chief prosecutor Carla Del Ponte. He said, “How did it come about that all of them at the end of the day couldn’t be with us, couldn’t be with the member states on 10 April? We’re talking about too big a number … just to put it down to chance, that they just couldn’t make it”.

 17 April 2013 (MSK)

Voice of Russia World Service


Editor’s Note:

Let’s keep it simple. The USA chooses to cloak its warmongering under a façade of smarmy pseudo-legality. These courts deal in ex post factovictor’s justice”… they aren’t real courts at all. The USA invaded the former Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Somalia, Iraq, and Libya… and it’s beating the war drums for an invasion of Syria and Iran. I know who belongs in the prisoner’s dock… it’s not Serb patriots whose only crime was opposing the American-fomented and –financed breakup of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (don’t forget, the present Croatian leadership is the direct descendant of the murderous Ustaše of World War II… the USA turned a blind eye to butchers of Orthodox Serbs and Croatian Jews escaping to South America and the USA). The USA refused to participate because its amoral and noxious foreign policy was under scrutiny… and they hate it when the truth is told about their unprincipled, unscrupulous, and brutal warmongering. God bless Vuk Jeremić… he told the truth.

Orthodox people have an obligation to support their Serb co-religionists in this. We shouldn’t follow disreputable quislings like Victor Potapov and James Paffhausen, who’ve sold out to the American powers-that-be (making them two of the worst “Sergianists” who ever existed… ironically, Potapov screams loudly about “Sergianism” in Russia whilst being more guilty of it than his targets are… fancy that). That’s the way it is…


Saturday, 1 December 2012

Acquittal of Haradinaj is a Slap in the Face

01 UCK Kosovo Liberation Army


On 29 November, the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) acquitted former Kosovo Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj, accused of war crimes, for the second time. The Serbian government made a special statement saying that the not guilty verdict was scandalous. It called the verdict an indulgence for committed crimes and ethnic cleansing in Kosovo. The Hague–based Tribunal acquitted Haradinaj in 2008 because the judges decided that there was insufficient evidence. However, his case went back to the ICTY for a new hearing at Serbia’s urgent request. Serbia said that some witnesses in the Haradinaj case were intimidated, and that many of them were simply eliminated. According to Belgrade, 30 witnesses and members of their families were killed from 1999 to 2011. Since the ICTY handed down its not guilty verdict to Haradinaj, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MID) made a special statement. It said that, for the first time in the history of international justice, the witnesses in this case were subjected to blatant blackmail, and very often simply eliminated. All this occurred in an atmosphere of complete impunity and with the connivance of international missions in Kosovo.

Dragan Stanojević, President of the United Serbian Diaspora in Eurasia, said, “For Serbs, the Hague Tribunal engenders cynicism because of its lack of justice. We should ask for the closure of the Hague Tribunal and ask for the reconsideration of its decisions, as well as holding trials of those who delivered such verdicts. All cooperation with the Hague Tribunal should be halted”. Again, the judges mentioned a lack of convincing evidence for convicting Haradinaj, who was one of the cruellest chieftains of the Albanian militants during the Kosovo War at the end of the 90s. He was involved in killing, torturing, raping, expelling, and persecuting the Serb population. Serbia opened 108 criminal cases involving murders and terrorism against him. In Kosovo, Haradinaj is one of the mafia godfathers. He controls arms, drugs, and gold smuggling.

Even former ICTY Prosecutor Carla Del Ponte said that she was shocked to hear the ruling of the Tribunal’s Chamber of Appeal. Aleksandr Karasev, an expert with the Institute of Slavic Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences, said, “It’s not objective. According to it, all Serbs receive punishment, whilst it acquits all the rest. The Hague Tribunal had the task of creating a legal justification of the actions that were carried out by NATO and the USA in the Balkans, and the ICTY Tribunal fulfilled this task”. Two-thirds of the cases involved Serbs, and two-thirds of those convicted are Serbs too. Current forecasts are that, after his acquittal, Haradinaj will have a first-class political career. According to media reports, behind-the scenes talks about a possible coalition of Haradinaj’s party, the Alliance For the Future of Kosovo, with the Democratic Party of Kosovo led by the current Kosovo Prime Minister (and Haradinaj’s good friend) Hashim Thaçi are presently underway.

30 November 2012

Andrei Fedyashin

Voice of Russia World Service



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