Tadić: Serbia's reputation "no longer tarnished"

BELGRADE -- Hague Tribunal fugitive Ratko Mladić was arrested this morning, Serbian President Boris Tadić stated during an extraordinary news conference called in Belgrade.

Boris Tadić
Boris Tadić

“On the behalf of the Republic of Serbia, I inform you that Ratko Mladić was arrested on Thursday morning in the operation carried out by the Security Information Agency (BIA) in coordination with the Service for Discovering War Crimes,” Tadić said.

“A difficult period of our history is over and Serbia's reputation is no longer tarnished,” Tadić underscored.

“I believe that this operation has proved that the services of the Republic of Serbia have made this country safe and have secured the rule of law, and that our work on the search for war crime suspects will increase Serbia's moral credibility in the international arena and raise all security capacities to a higher level. The greatest part of the work was done by the BIA,” Tadić said.

"It is good for Serbia that it has closed this chapter of history," Tadić said, and explained that the extradition process was already underway.

Asked whether he expected unrest in the country, the president said that he did not expect the country to enter a political crisis, and that "anyone who tries anything of the kind will be arrested and prosecuted".

The indictment against the former military leader of Serbs in Bosnia was issued by the Hague Tribunal in 1995.