Commenting on the revelation of Ratko Mladic’s personnel military file published in today’s press, the High Representative, Paddy Ashdown, said that the document indicates that the RS, through the VRS, had for a full seven years, been in flagrant breach of Dayton and their international obligations by formally retaining Ratko Mladic on their books and perhaps even paying him while claiming they didn’t know where he was.
“We have now seen for ourselves Ratko Mladic’s personnel file,” said the High Representative. “The fact that as recently as two years ago, the VRS had an employer/employee relationship with Mr Mladic is scandalous, and is an indication of the flagrant disregard that the RS authorities and especially the VRS have held towards their Dayton commitments and their obligations to the International Tribunal in The Hague.”
He said that this document supports comments made by the ICTY Chief Prosecutor Carla del Ponte last week, in which she noted that there are fundamental systemic weaknesses built into the law enforcement and security structures in the RS.
“What does this tell us about the collusion of the VRS in Mr Mladic’s continued evasion of justice and their willingness to co-operate with the ICTY?,” said the High Representative. “This is proof of systemic institutional weaknesses that exist - in particular in the RS MoI and MoD. The RS must break with the past if it wants a modern European future.”
He noted that the document also contradicts the claim by the RS authorities that the institutional links between the VJ and VRS were severed back in 2000 and 2001. “If Mr Mladic was registered with both the VJ and the VRS, why did his personnel file never appear back in 2000 and 2001 when the authorities were claiming to have severed the link?” said the High Representative.
Ratko Mladic’s personnel military file was published today. It showed that he was discharged from the VJ in 2001 and from the VRS in 2002. His discharge from the VRS was issued by decree of the then RS President Mirko Sarovic in March 2002.