Hague tribunal chief prosecutor Serge Brammertz says in the interview for Belgrade based daily Vecernje Novosti that he does not think that the Hague Tribunal directly leads to the reconciliation of the people in the former Yugoslavia, but that the determination of responsibility is a prerequisite for reconciliation.
Brammertz says on the occasion of closing of the court that that the effect of the verdicts was as such as the political leaders and the media decided to give them. He states that executives are responsible for the consequences if they decide to deepen the divisions and increase the tensions, reports Serbian media.
Commenting on the length of the sentences of the convicted Serbs, the Hague tribunal chief prosecutor says that Serbs fought in Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Kosovo, and that the leaders committed “terrible ethnic cleansing in all these places,” reports Serbian media.
“If this fact is accepted, then it is not surprising that most of those convicted by the Tribunal are Serbs. If this fact is not accepted, which seems to be the case among Serbian officials and the public, and then it really is about refusing to accept the truth” says Brammertz.
The Prosecution was dissatisfied with the outcome of some cases, including the acquittal of Croatian General Ante Gotovina, the Haradinaj case, but and the Perisic case.
“We are not satisfied because we have presented the best evidence available, but the judges did not agree with us, but it is also important to say that in those cases we proved that the crimes were committed,” says Bramertz.
In his words, the Tribunal has prosecuted individuals for crimes against Serbs, but there are still cases pending before the national courts, especially in BiH for crimes committed in Posavina and Konjic.
“We at the Prosecutor’s Office, and our colleagues who work at the national level, really care about justice for Serb victims just as we care about justice for all victims. But it often seems that politicians only want to use the victims for political purposes, although some claim that hundreds of thousands of Serbs were victims of war crimes during the conflict, neither the Prosecution nor any other international court have ever received evidence in this regard,” Brammertz says.