USIS Washington File

25 April 2000

Text: Bosnia Peace Force Detains Accused War Criminal

(Troops arrest Dragan Nikolic April 21)  (370)
Soldiers of the NATO-lead Peace Stabilization Force (SFOR) in
Bosnia-Herzegovina arrested accused war criminal Dragan Nikolic April
22, an SFOR press release said. Nikolic was transferred to The Hague
to appear before the International Criminal Tribunal for the former
Yugoslavia (ICTY).
Nikolic is under open indictment for war crimes allegedly committed in
the spring and summer of 1992 while he was in command of a detention
camp at Susica in northeastern Bosnia.
Following is the text of the SFOR press release:
(begin text)
Peace Stabilization Force (SFOR)
Press Release
Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina
22 April 2000
Sarajevo - On April 21, 2000, Stabilization Force (SFOR) elements in
Multinational Division North (MND-N) in Bosnia and Herzegovina, acting
within SFOR's mandate, detained an individual identified as Dragan
Nikolic is charged with crimes against humanity, violations of the
laws or customs of war, and grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions.
These crimes and violations are punishable under Articles of the
Statute of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former
Yugoslavia (ICTY).
Nikolic is now at The Hague.
There were no SFOR casualties sustained during the operation. The
action was undertaken in accordance with SFOR's duties. This mandate
was given to SFOR by the North Atlantic Council under authority
contained in the relevant United Nation Security Council Resolution.
As the Secretary General of NATO affirmed again in a recent statement,
NATO is determined to play its role in helping to bring indicted war
criminals to justice. Those indicted war criminals who remain at large
have no permanent hiding place. NATO will continue to detain them, as
well as those that the Chief Prosecutor at the ICTY may indict in the
future. SFOR advises all indicted war criminals to surrender
immediately to the Tribunal.
In his statement, the Secretary General praised the SFOR troops and
their commanders for their courage, professionalism, and dedication in
carrying out this action which will contribute to the continued
consolidation of the peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
(end text)
(Distributed by the Office of International Information Programs, U.S.
Department of State. Web site:

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