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Interview with Svetozar Vujacic

Karadzic decided to defend himself at the trial, just as Slobodan Milosevic did six years ago. His lawyer, Svetozar Vujacic, explained to RT the reasons for that decision.

Svetozar Vujacic: Radovan Karadzic cannot respond to the indictment for one simple reason – it is not yet ready and hasn’t been given to him, just like Mr Serge Bramerc said. So he doesn’t have anything to respond to. There isn’t a single judicial system in the world where the person wouldn’t be charged first. He doesn’t know what he is being accused of – how can he defend himself? He is ready to do so – but 13 years have passed and they still haven’t prepared the final indictment act.

Russia Today: Why has your client chosen to defend himself?

SV: It is his choice – we agree with it with my colleague Goran Petronievich. We think nobody would defend him better than he himself. Especially taking into account the regulations of the tribunal. Our role as his lawyers is to help him prepare his defence and do everything he needs except attending the tribunal. The public prosecutor said the indictment would be ready on the 1st of August – but here we are almost a month later and we still don’t have the final document.

RT: Why are you here and not in the Hague?

SV: For one simple reason – thanks to the Dutch authorities I still haven’t been granted a visa.

RT: Radovan Karadzic has said he fears for his life. Why?

SV: We have many examples where the Serbs only left the Hague when they were dead. The most famous example was that of Slobodan Milosevic. But there were others such as Slavko Dokmanovich, Milan Babich and others. Today the science has reached the stage when he can be poisoned in any possible way. And Karadzich doesn’t exclude such a scenario. It is normal that he’s got fears. Those are rational fears – he’s a psychiatrist so he feels the attitude towards him there. He fears that the United States will try to hide the facts we have prepared in his defence so that the truth about the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina never sees the light of the day. They will try to avoid any discussion about the deal with Richard Holbrooke etc. and they will make all the so called western democratic states follow suit.

RT: Karadzic believes he’s been demonized and therefore he won’t receive a fair trial – is there any chance for justice?

SV: There is no justice as such in the Hague Tribunal, because it is a vengeance court. In my view the tribunal was founded mainly against the Serbs. Sometimes you can find there a Croat or an Albanian – but as you know they always receive very mild and short punishments. And sometimes like in the case of Orich and Ramush Haradinaya – they are vindicated, discharged, excused.

RT: The charges haven’t been amended since 2000 – they say they work on the updated version – has the document reached your client?

SV: It would be normal if he was charged – but at the moment it looks like this might become the first case in the world where a person would be tried without the final indictment act. I don’t exclude such a thing. He’s had three indictments and the last one was in 2000 – he’s been accused of the gravest crimes! As if he killed half of the world population.

We don’t expect the process to start before June next year. They have to give him and us, as his lawyers, time – as you can understand there are tonnes of material – and we will demand all the documentation to be in Serbian language. The most important is to prove one simple thing – the truth. We will seek the truth and we’ll try to prove something that has already been proven – that the civil war in Bosnia and Herzegovina was started by Germany, England, Vatican and the Americans!