[JURIST] The president of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) [official website; JURIST news archive] wrote in a letter [text, PDF; press release] to the UN Monday that the Serbian government had failed to cooperate with Tribunal investigations and cases in violation of the court's UN statute [Article 29 text, PDF]. ICTY president Fausto Pocar [official profile] told UN Security Council President Zalmay Khalilzad [US government profile] that the court repeatedly asked the Serbian government [order, PDF] to help them find General Aleksander Dimitrijevic, who was a key witness in the court's case involving Former Yugoslavian President Milan Milutinovic [TrialWatch profile; ICTY case backgrounder, PDF]. Pocar said that the government had even hampered the court in its efforts to summon Dimitrijevic, and told Khalilzad:
I view this situation as a very serious one. The Security Council in establishing the International Tribunal gave it certain powers, one of which was to issue binding orders for the appearance of key witnesses before it. By failing to comply with its duties, the Government of Serbia is challenging the authority of the International Tribunal and the Security Council. Article 29 of the Statute is particularly clear in that regard and demands that the orders of the Trial Chamber be implemented swiftly and categorically and with the greatest diligence.Reuters has more.
Milutinovic and five co-defendents [JURIST report] face charges [indictment, PDF; ICTY backgrounder] of war crimes and crimes against humanity, including the deportation, forcible transfer, murder and persecution of thousands of Kosovo Albanians during the former Yugoslavia's 1999 ethnic conflict [State Department backgrounder].