BELGRADE, Serbia, Oct. 28 (UPI) -- A Serbian leader says he welcomed released war criminal Biljana Plavsic back to the country purely for personal reasons.
Milorad Dodik, prime minister of the Serbian Republic of Srpska, says he sent a jet to Sweden to pick up Plavsic from jail and greeted her in Belgrade because he owed her a "moral" debt, the Serbian news Web site B92 reported Wednesday.
Plavsic, the former president of the Serb republic in Bosnia, was released from a Swedish prison Tuesday after serving two-thirds of a war crimes sentence imposed by The Hague Tribunal. Dodik said he made the gestures "for purely moral reasons."
"She went voluntarily and I was the man who saw her off, and I believe it was my human obligation to do the same as she came back," Dodik told B92. "I did not wish to send out any message other than that I have a human relationship with Biljana. (My critics) can calculate about other reasons for days."
Plavsic was sentenced to 11 years in prison for persecuting Muslims and other non-Serbs in Bosnia, helping to enable a policy of ethnic cleansing that led to a genocide.