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Thursday, 21 March, 2002, 09:35 GMT
Del Ponte calls for snatch squad
Carla Del Ponte and Colin Powell
Del Ponte (left) says Mladic is in Yugoslavia
The chief prosecutor of the United Nations crimes tribunal, Carla Del Ponte, has said a special squad should sent to search for the fugitive Bosnian Serb leader, Radovan Karadzic.


I tried... to explain... you cannot arrest a fugitive if you move with 200 soldiers in uniform, from their headquarters to a village

Carla Del Ponte
She told journalists during a visit to UN headquarters in New York she was not surprised two Nato raids failed last month to capture him in Bosnia.

She said she had called for a plainclothes team to go in, rather than uniformed soldiers - but countries making up the Nato force had declined.

House where Ratko Mladic has stayed in Belgrade
Safe house: Ratko Mladic stayed here in Belgrade
Ms Del Ponte also criticised the authorities in Belgrade for not co-operating with the tribunal in The Hague, and for sheltering the Bosnian Serb military leader, Ratko Mladic.

She said Mr Mladic had been in Serbia for about a month.

The two leaders are wanted on charges of genocide and crimes against humanity.

Aid cut threat

Yugoslavia has until the end of March to start co-operating with the international war crimes tribunal if it does not want to lose $40m in vital financial aid from the US.

Milosevic arrest
A funding deadline sparked Milosevic's arrest
Diplomats have speculated that the 31 March cut-off date could provoke the last-minute arrests of the suspects similar to that of Slobodan Milosevic this time last year.

His dramatic arrest coincided with a deadline for international aid, which was subsequently granted.

Yugoslavia has been criticised for failing to hand over several indicted war crimes suspects to the tribunal, some of whom remain in public life, such as Serbian President Milan Milutinovic.

Co-operation with the tribunal is a divisive issue in Yugoslavia. It is opposed by President Vojislav Kostunica, but supported by Serbian Prime Minister Zoran Djindjic.

See also:

01 Mar 02 | Europe
Karadzic slips Nato net again
01 Mar 02 | Europe
The race to catch Karadzic
28 Feb 02 | Europe
Nato's Karadzic hunt draws blank
12 Mar 02 | Europe
The Hague looms over the Balkans
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