"Seselj could only be extradited" - lawyer

Hague Tribunal's chief prosecutor will be in Belgrade on Monday when he may clarify how the decision to order Vojislav Seselj back to Hague was made.

Source: B92

Seven months after his return from The Hague, Seselj could soon again could be detained. However, it remains unclear how the Appeals Chamber could make such a decision without the Trial Chamber that has him on trial.

"Obviously the public is wandering in the dark because the matter was up to the Appeals Chamber. The Appeals Chamber could not have taken a decision. Our country has a chance to get out of this unpleasant situation, at the same time protecting the rights of its citizen, and on the other hand, indicating that there are unlawful acts by the Hague Tribunal," says lawyer Borivoje Borovic.

Borovic, who has represented several defendants in the Hague, explains that the legal basis for the Hague's demand that the government of Serbia reacts is also not clear, because Seselj was released "almost unconditionally." He sees a request for extradition as a possible legal basis.

In that case, Borovic added, "Seselj could be given the right to prove before a national courts that his trial (in the Hague) was not conducted within a reasonable time. He could prove that because of his disease there are no conditions for his extradition."

Seselj's Radicals say that their leader will not surrender voluntarily, but will also "not hide," and express their worry for his health. According to SRS official Vjerica Radeta, he has started chemotherapy treatment, which could be interrupted if he is sent back to prison, "and that could be fatal."

The department of media relations of the Hague Tribunal could not confirm that the Appeals Chamber issued any decision in relation to Seselj and his return to the detention unit.

Chief Prosecutor Serge Brammertz will visit Belgrade today. B92 learned that his trip was scheduled two months ago and was not spurred by the demand to send Seselj back. However, it is expected that he will clarify the misgivings related to the way in which the decision was made.


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