U.N. prosecutor scolds Serbia over Mladic

Jan. 31, 2007 at 1:36 PM

THE HAGUE, Netherlands, Jan. 31 (UPI) -- A U.N. court prosecutor said Wednesday Serbia must transfer a war crimes suspect to The Hague before European Union talks with Belgrade resume.

Carla del Ponte, chief prosecutor of the U.N. Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia in The Hague, Netherlands, told reporters the Serbian government had done nothing to arrest former Bosnian Serb military chief Ratko Mladic, sought on genocide and crimes against humanity charges in the former Yugoslavia from 1991-95, Belgrade's B92 radio said.

Addressing a news conference after her talks with EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana, Ponte warned that resuming talks with Serbia would be harmful as the European Union would send a wrong signal to Belgrade.

The union put off association and stabilization talks with Serbia in May after Serbian Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica failed to keep his promise to arrest and hand over Mladic to the tribunal.

Since then, EU officials have said they will resume talks with Serbia immediately after Mladic is in custody.

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