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United States resumes aid to Serbia and Montenegro

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Welcomes actions to improve cooperation with Hague tribunal

The United States is resuming aid to Serbia and Montenegro, as announced June 9 by Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Nicholas Burns in Belgrade, according to the State Department.

The decision releases $10 million in assistance that was suspended in January following a finding by former Secretary of State Colin Powell that Serbia and Montenegro was not cooperating with the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY).

"We welcome the recent actions by Serbia and Montenegro and the Republic of Serbia to improve cooperation with the Tribunal," said State Department spokesman Sean McCormack.

However, Under Secretary Burns has made clear that the United States expects "all leaders in the region to arrest and transfer to the ICTY in The Hague all the remaining indictees still at large, particularly Radovan Karadzic, Ratko Mladic, and Ante Gotovina," McCormack said.

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U.S. Department of State
Office of the Spokesman
June 9, 2005

Statement by Sean McCormack, Spokesman

CERTIFICATION OF SERBIA AND MONTENEGRO

The Secretary of State has determined and certified that Serbia and Montenegro has met the criteria of Section 563 of the Foreign Operations, Export Financing and Related Programs Appropriations Act, 2005.

This decision, announced by Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Nicholas Burns today in Belgrade, will release $10 million in assistance that was suspended in January of this year, consistent with Secretary Powell's finding in March 2004 that Serbia and Montenegro was not cooperating with the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY). Since January, Serbia and Montenegro has taken major steps to comply with the criteria of Section 563, including transferring twelve ICTY indictees to The Hague.

We welcome the recent actions by Serbia and Montenegro and the Republic of Serbia to improve cooperation with the Tribunal. The Secretary's decision does not indicate that Serbia and Montenegro has fully met its obligation to arrest and transfer all indictees to the Tribunal. During his trip to the region, Under Secretary Burns made clear that we expect all leaders in the region to arrest and transfer to the ICTY in The Hague all the remaining indictees still at large, particularly Radovan Karadzic, Ratko Mladic, and Ante Gotovina. This is especially important as we mark this year the tenth anniversary of the signing of the Dayton peace accords, and on July 11 the tenth anniversary of the massacre of 8,000 Muslim men and boys at Srebrenica, Europe's most brutal war crime since World War II.

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(Distributed by the Bureau of International Information Programs, U.S. Department of State. Web site: http://usinfo.state.gov)