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Thursday, 20 February, 2003, 14:21 GMT
The Hague's wanted men
Slobodan Milosevic with Yugoslav leaders in 1999
The extradition of former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic has paved the way for similar action against other senior Serbian politicians and generals.

Four other Serbian leaders were indicted along with the former Yugoslav president for war crimes allegedly committed during the Kosovo conflict.

They are the current Serbian President, Milan Milutinovic, former Yugoslav Deputy Prime Minister Nikola Sainovic, the Yugoslav army's former chief-of-staff, General Dragoljub Ojdanic, and former Serbian Minister of the Interior Vlajko Stojiljkovic.

Mr Stojiljkovic - who headed the police under former President Slobodan Milosevic - shot himself in front of the federal parliamenton 11 April just hours after its members voted to allow the extradition of suspects to The Hague tribunal.

Three former Yugoslav army officers - Mile Mrksic, Miroslav Radic and Veselin Sljivancanin - were indicted for the 1991 massacre of at least 200 ethnic Croats in the eastern Croatian city of Vukovar.

Two Bosnian Serb leaders indicted for atrocities during the 1992-95 Bosnian war - Radovan Karadzic and Ratko Mladic - also face extradition but their whereabouts are unknown.

Kosovo charges

All five Serbian leaders are charged with direct personal responsibility for ordering, planning, executing or aiding and abetting mass deportations and murders.

And apart from Mr Sainovic, they are also charged with what is called command responsibility - in other words, of failing either to prevent alleged atrocities by subordinates or of not punishing them for their criminal conduct.

The four officials who have been charged along with Mr Milosevic were among the President's closest associates. They were important figures in the Serbian political and security hierarchy - high up in the pyramid that had Mr Milosevic at its top and his wife, Mira Markovic, alongside him.

Milan Milutinovic:
Former Serbian President Milan Milutinovic
Milan Milutinovic barely scraped through the presidential elections

Milan Milutinovic inherited the post of President of Serbia from Mr Milosevic in 1997.

On that occasion Mr Milutinovic had barely managed to scrape through the elections when, according to official figures, the turnout was just 0.9% above the required 50 % of the electorate.

Mr Milutinovic was earlier Yugoslavia's Foreign Minister and as such he accompanied President Milosevic at the Dayton peace talks that ended the war in Bosnia. Before that he was Yugoslavia's ambassador in Athens - a posting that gave rise to widespread rumours that he was involved in administering the official and personal bank accounts of Serbian leaders in Greece and Cyprus.

After Mr Milosevic's hand-over to The Hague, Mr Milutinovic was reported to have agreed to testify against his former protégé - allegedly having struck a deal with the tribunal's prosecutors. This, however, has not been confirmed.

Nikola Sainovic:
Former Yugoslav deputy Prime Minister Nikola Sainovic
Sainovic carried out a number of sensitive diplomatic errands for Milosevic

Former Yugoslav deputy Prime Minister Nikola Sainovic was one of the senior members of the Belgrade delegation at the Kosovo peace talks in France in February 1999.

He is an experienced political operator, who has done a number of sensitive errands for Mr Milosevic.

A former economics minister, he had maintained close links with the Bosnian Serb off-shoot of President Milosevic's Socialist Party.

He was also in charge of co-ordinating policy on Kosovo. At the time of the killing of over 40 Kosovo Albanians in the village of Racak, US officials claimed to have intercepted a phone call in which Mr Sainovic allegedly ordered Serbian security forces to move in hard on the locals.

Vlajko Stojiljkovic:
Former Serbian Minister of the Interior Vlajko Stojiljkovic
Vlajko Stojiljkovic is a member of the "Pozarevac clan"

Former Serbian Minister of the Interior Vlajko Stojiljkovic used to be a manager in Pozarevac - the Milosevic couple's home town - and is described as a member of the "Pozarevac clan".

He was once head of Serbia's chamber of economy - a post in which he opposed economic reform. Mr Stojiljkovic later took control of the police following the gangland-type killing of his predecessor.

General Dragoljub Ojdanic:
General Dragoljub Ojdanic
General Ojdanic was in charge of the military during the Kosovo crisis

General Dragoljub Ojdanic, the Yugoslav army's chief-of-staff, was a latecomer to Mr Milosevic's inner circle.

He was appointed to his post in November 1998 after his predecessor had disagreed on different occasions with Mr Milosevic's plans to use the army in Kosovo, Montenegro and against the opposition in Serbia.

Although under Mr Milosevic the army was forced to play second fiddle to the police, the military's importance greatly increased with the escalation of the Kosovo conflict and Nato's air strikes, bringing General Ojdanic centre stage.

Bosnia's top suspects

Now that Mr Milosevic has been extradited, it may only be a matter of time before the other four head for the The Hague.

The tribunal's prosecutor, Carla Del Ponte, has said she will issue fresh indictments against Mr Milosevic on 1 October for war crimes committed in Bosnia and Croatia in the first half of the 1990s. In the case of Bosnia the charges will also include genocide.

"It is expected that those two additional indictments will be out by the end of summer," Mr Blewitt told journalists at The Hague.

However, two of the tribunal's top targets on Bosnia remain at large - former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic and his army chief Ratko Mladic.

Their testimonies will be critical to the prosecution's chances of pinning down evidence against Slobodan Milosevic.

Radovan Karadzic:
Former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic in 1995
Radovan Karadzic was Bosnian Serb leader during the war

Radovan Karadzic and Ratko Mladic were indicted jointly in July 1995 on 16 punishable offences including genocide.

Mr Karadzic became the first president of the separatist Bosnian Serb administration based in Pale, near Sarajevo, in May 1992. In this capacity he was empowered to command the army on the Bosnian Serb administration in times of war and peace, to order the utilisation of the police in case of war, mobilise reservists and all other forces accused of Bosnia's ethnic cleansing, the indictment says.

Under strong international pressure he was replaced at the end of the Bosnian war.

For several years after the Dayton peace accords of November 1995 there were reported sightings of Radovan Karadzic - on occasions in close proximity to the Nato-led peacekeepers.

However, his whereabouts remain largely unknown with speculation suggesting he is in hiding while frequently on the move between eastern Bosnia, on the territory of the Bosnian Serb republic, and neighbouring Montenegro - within Yugoslavia - where he was born.

Ratko Mladic:
Former Bosnian Serb military leader Ratko Mladic in 1996
Ratko Mladic was in charge of ethnic cleansing in Bosnia

Ratko Mladic was Mr Karadzic's army chief throughout the Bosnian war.

In 1991, he was appointed commander of the 9th Corps of the Yugoslav People's Army (JNA) in Knin in the Republic of Croatia. He assumed command of the Bosnian Serb army in May 1992.

The tribunal's indictment says Mladic "demonstrated his control in military matters by negotiating, inter alia, ceasefire and prisoner exchange agreements; agreements relating to the opening of Sarajevo airport; agreements relating to access for humanitarian aid convoys; and anti-sniping agreements, all of which have been implemented."

After the end of the Bosnian war, Mr Mladic returned to Belgrade, enjoying the open support and protection of Mr Milosevic.

He was said to have left his villa for an unknown destination after Mr Milosevic was arrested on 1 April 2001.

It is believed that he is regularly changing his hiding place between locations in Serbia and the Bosnian Serb republic. The court's progress

The Hague tribunal has so far convicted 22 individuals - among these, 12 appeals are still in progress - and acquitted two.

Proceedings are under way against 48 indictees. Almost all of them are in the custody of the Tribunal with just three of them allowed to await their trials while at liberty.

A further 27 arrest warrants are still outstanding against indictees who are at large.

There is also an unknown number of secret or sealed indictments whoe purpose is to make it easier to apprehend indictees who might otherwise go into hiding.

Charges were dropped against 18 suspects, two were acquitted, three have been previously released and nine died before they could be tried.


At The Hague

Still wanted

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