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USAs sjefforhandler Richard Holbrooke inngikk en uformell avtale med Radovan Karadzic om at han ikke ville bli arrestert hvis han trakk seg ut av politikken. Det var Pentagon og president Bill Clinton som presset Holbrooke til dette, sier Balkan-ekspert og historieprofessor Charles Ingrao til Balkan.insight.

Charles Ingrao, a US history professor heading a documentation group on the Balkan wars, told Balkan Insight that Holbrooke «promised Karadzic he would not be arrested if he withdrew from politics».

Ingrao says that through mediators, Holbrooke made a deal with the former Bosnian Serb leader in order to remove him from the political stage in the Republica Srpska, RS, the Bosnian Serb entity established at the 1995 Dayton, Ohio, peace talks.

He warned that written evidence of the agreement was unlikely to emerge, however. «Holbrooke is not stupid,» Ingrao said. «There is nothing written.»

Ingrao said his information came from four independent sources in the US State Department whose names he could not divulge. «We cannot reveal their identities, since they are still very active and would, in some cases, suffer professionally,» he said.

Ingrao said Holbrooke had been given no option but to offer key concessions to Karadzic regarding his future liberty.

Opplysningene er ikke direkte sjokkerende. Karadzic ble presset ut av politikken, og hva ble han lovet for det? Svaret er nærliggende på bakgrunn av NATOs oppførsel.

Mer oppsiktsvekkende er det hvem som presset Holbrooke – president Bill Clinton.

«It was the Pentagon, backed by [then President Bill] Clinton, that presented Holbrooke with a ‘fait accompli’ that US forces would not seize ICTY indictees,» he continued.

Ingrao’s statements come after the International Criminal Tribunal for ex-Yugoslavia, ICTY, published a letter written by Karadzic in which he referred to an agreement struck with Holbrooke in 1996.
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Ingrao heads «The Scholar’s Initiative», a programme involving about 300 scholars worldwide, working to establish the facts about the fall of Yugoslavia.

A former NATO commander in Bosnia in 1995 and 1996, General William Nash, meanwhile told Radio Netherlands Worldwide that «no specific orders were given for the arrest of the war crimes suspects Radovan Karadzic and General Ratko Mladic».

He added: «It was feared that it would destabilize the situation after the Dayton agreements.»

Den bosniskserbiske utenriksminister Aleksa Buha sier til Beograd radio at han var til stede da avtalen ble inngått.

The former Bosnian Serb foreign minister Aleksa Buha told Belgrade Radio he witnessed the agreement. He said the deal was made «in the night between 18 and 19 July 1996».

The former Bosnian foreign minister Mohamed Sacirbey told the Mostar paper Dnevni that he learnt about the deal through the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe’s head of mission, the US diplomat Robert Frowick, in the summer of 1996

Nyheten om en slik avtale, etter Holbrookes mange og kategoriske dementier, er med å svekke den moralske status til maktene som stiller Karadzic for retten. «Verden» solgte ut/sviktet Bosnia den gang, under krigen, og det lå også svik bak freden. Slik vil det bli oppfattet at Karadzic var 13 år på frifot.

Exclusive: ‘Pentagon Behind Karadzic Immunity Deal’, Expert