The following media round up on international, legal and foreign policy issues from around the Balkans for the period from 28 May to 11 June 2021.
The Guernica Group will provide bi-weekly media updates with a focus Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia and Serbia . Should you wish to contribute or submit a media summary, opinion piece or blog, please send to Ned Vucijak at email@example.com for consideration.
Albania – 9 June 2021
Albanian MPs have recently voted to impeached president Ilir Meta, for allegedly violating the constitution ahead of Albania's April election. It is now up to the Albanian Constitutional Court to give an approval within the next three months.
Serbia – 3 June 2021
A trial of Danko Vladicic started last week at the Belgrade Higher Court. Danko Vladicic a Bosnian Serb has been accused of killing a Bosniak couple in August 1992.
Serbia – 3 June 2021
At a trial in Belgrade Higher Court ,of wartime Bosnian Serb Army soldier Dragan Dopudja, former police employees said that Bosniak prisoners were taken away from a detention facility in Ripac near Bihac in June 1992 and never seen again.
Serbia – 8 June 2021
National Assembly of Serbia voted on the 7 of June to trigger the procedure for amending the Constitution in the field of the country’s judicial system. The procedure requires the Committee on Constitutional Affairs to draw up the amendments, which will then have to be confirmed by a two-thirds majority and by the citizens in a referendum.
Serbia – 9 June 2021
The president of International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals, Carmel Agius, told the UN Security Council on 8th of June that the verdict in the retrial of Jovica Stanisic and Franko Simatovic is still on track to be delivered by the end of this month.
Stanisic and Simatovic, the former head of Serbian State Security and deputy, are being retried for alleged participation in a joint criminal enterprise whose aim was the forcibly remove the majority of non-Serbs, from areas in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Croatia during 1991 to 1995.
Bosnia and Hercegovina – 8 June 2021
International Criminal Tribunals in The Hague on 8 of June confirmed that Ratko Mladic will serve a life sentence for his role in the worst enormity in Europe since World War II. Ratko Mladic has been sentenced to life imprisonments for crimes against humanity and committing genocide in Srebrenica in 1995.
Bosnia and Herzegovina 10 June 2021
In a second-instance verdict, the Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina sentenced six defendants for crimes committed against Serb and Croat civilians in the Hadzici area, during the war in the 90s, to a total of 42 years in prison.
North Macedonia - 3 June 2021
Police in North Macedonia say they have arrested six people part of an organised migrant smuggling ring operating around Skopje.
Montenegro – 2 June 2021
European Commission has sent its biannual non-paper on the state of the rule of law in Montenegro and Serbia to the Member States. The Commission noted problems with the judicial track record, independence of the judiciary, and a still problematic situation in the area of freedom of expression, among other findings.
Croatia – 31 May 2021
Croatian police charged an unnamed 55-year-old man with raping a woman during the siege of the town of Vukovar in 1991. The crime happened in October 1991 in Vukovar, when it was besieged by the Yugoslav People’s Army and Serb paramilitaries.