Del Ponte believes there was an agreement
B92 Website - October 3, 2007 (13:32 -> 15:56)
Belgrade -- Carla del Ponte confirmed in 2004 that negotiations with Karadzic took place and said she believes an agreement was reached between Holbrooke and Karadzic.
In a conversation with the former speaker of the Republika Srpska parliament Dragan Kalinic the chief prosecutor of the Hague tribunal confirmed that negotiations were conducted eight years ago. In a transcript of a discussion published by Banja Luka Nezavisne Novine, Del Ponte says that she believes in the existence of a Holbrooke-Karadzic agreement but also is threatening the existence of RS unless the tribunal's demands are met.
During her conversation with Kalinic, which took place at the end of May 2004, Carla del Ponte tired to convince the former Republika Srpska parliament speaker to convey a message to Radovan Karadzic that it would be better for him if he voluntarily turned himself in.
Del Ponte said that the prosecutor's office even negotiated with the former leader of the Bosnian Serbs but that those negotiations fell through:
"In September 1999 Karadzic was in direct contact with us in order to reach an agreement on voluntary surrender but he didn't want it to look like a voluntary surrender. At the request of Karadzic, I organized his arrest in Switzerland but then he changed his mind and didn't want to turn himself in. Karadzic knows very well that he is in danger because if they find him he will not be transferred to The Hague alive."
Carla del Ponte told Kalinic that Karadzic must get her message because his life is in danger unless he voluntarily goes to The Hague:
Del Ponte: What is most important is that he is now in danger.
Kalinic: That is the essence of your message, that he should think about the fact that turning himself in is better than being killed.
Del Ponte: Yes.
The Hague prosecutor does not say who might kill Radovan Karadzic, people from his surroundings with ties to Slobodan Milosevic or members of international forces or perhaps a third party.
According to one version, it was not in Milosevic's interest for Karadzic to speak up in the Tribunal, while according to another Karadzic might be killed by members of NATO during his arrest.
Carla del Ponte illustrates the probability of the second scenario with the existence of a Holbrooke-Karadzic agreement, in which the US diplomat allegedly promised Karadzic protection from criminal prosecution if he withdrew from all functions:
Del Ponte: I am investigating the story of an agreement between Karadzic and Holbrooke.
Kalinic: Do you believe that the agreement exists?
Del Ponte: Yes.
In 2004 Carla del Ponte threatened Banja Luka that unless the demands of the Hague tribunal's prosecutor's office were met, Republika Srpska would cease to exist
Del Ponte: There will be no more parliament, there will be no more government, there will be no more federation; all that will exist will be Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Kalinic: That's even worse.
Del Ponte: There will be no more Republika Srpska. The end
The editor in chief of Banja Luka paper Nezavisne Novine Dragan Jerinic says that this audio recordings show that the Hague prosecutor's office knew where Karadzic was hiding and that until that moment he had firm promises that he would not be arrested.
"This opens the question how the Dayton agreement was arrived at. It means what kind of agreement was reached with Radovan Karadzic. It also opens the question why Srebrenica was sacrificed, who participated in those agreements and who participated in what was to occur there. It means a whole series of questions have been opened and it poses the question of who this entire time has not wanted Karadzic to appear in The Hague."
The tapes of the conversation between Carla del Ponte and Dragan Kalinic were given to Banja Luka Nezavisne Novine by former RS president Dragan Cavic who thus wanted to disprove former prosecution spokeswoman Florence Hartmann's claim made in her book that he was a NATO spy.
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