Goran Hadžić was the final suspect to be arrested by the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia. The arrest formed the final chapter in the work of the tribunal which set out to arrest 161 former leaders for war crimes and crimes against humanity.
The arrests of Ratko Mladic and Goran Hadžić had been cited as hurdles for Serbia to overcome before being fully assessed for membership of the EU. It is hoped by many that talks will now begin on the timetable for the Balkan state to join the European Union.
The NATO Secretary General welcomed the news:
“I commend the step taken by the Serbian authorities to live up to their international obligations. Serbia’s future lies in constructive cooperation with its neighbours and the Euro-Atlantic family. NATO remains committed to assisting the entire Western Balkan region on the way to Euro-Atlantic integration.”
Hadžić is the former President of the self-proclaimed Republic of Serbian Krajina. The Office of the Prosecutor indicted him in 2004 for crimes against humanity and war crimes allegedly committed in eastern Slavonia, Croatia, between 1991 and 1992. He will be detained in Serbia and appear before a judge to enter a plea prior to his transfer to the Hague.