Press Release . Communiqué de presse
(Exclusively for the use of the media. Not an official document)
OFFICE OF THE PROSECUTOR
BUREAU DU PROCUREUR
The Hague, 16 April 1998
PRESS STATEMENT BY THE PROSECUTOR CONCERNING
THE VOLUNTARY SURRENDER OF ZORAN ZIGIC
In recent weeks there have been several media reports that Zoran ZIGIC, who has been publicly indicted by the ICTY, was prepared to surrender himself voluntarily to the Tribunals jurisdiction. The accused has been indicted on two occasions by the Tribunal, first in February 1995 for offences allegedly committed in June and July 1992 in the Omarska detention camp and secondly in July 1995 for offences allegedly committed between June and July 1992 in the Keraterm detention camp (see below).
Acting on information that the accused was prepared to surrender voluntarily, today 16 April, Investigators from the Office of the Prosecutor of ICTY, with the support of S-For troops, went to the prison in Banja Luka where the accused was in custody serving a sentence for offences unrelated to those for which he has been indicted by the ICTY.
The Investigators served a copy of the arrest warrants on the relevant prison authorities who released the accused into the custody of the ICTY Investigators. The accused was then formally arrested pursuant to the Tribunals warrants of arrest in order to be transported to The Hague where he will be detained in the UN Detention Unit awaiting his initial appearance before a Trial Chamber in the coming days.
Background on the indictments
Background on the indictments
Zoran Zigic is one of the 19 accused named in the indictment issued by the ICTY on 13 February 1995 with regard to crimes allegedly committed between May and August 1992 against Bosnian Muslim and Bosnian Croat civilians from the Prijedor district (northwestern Bosnia) held at the Omarska camp, a makeshift detention facility where "the Serb forces killed, raped, assaulted, beat and otherwise mistreated the prisoners".
In addition, Zoran Zigic is one of 13 accused named in the Sikirica & others ("Keraterm") indictment issued by the ICTY on 21 July 1995 with regard to crimes allegedly committed between May and August 1992 when Serb forces unlawfully seized and confined more than 3,000 Bosnian Muslims and Bosnian Croats from the Prijedor district in inhumane conditions in the Keraterm "camp", located just outside the town of Prijedor, where detainees "were killed, sexually assaulted, tortured, beaten, and otherwise subjected to cruel and inhuman treatment".
Background on the charges:
Omarska camp indictment:
According to the indictment, Zoran Zigic, a/k/a Ziga, was among those who entered the camp to kill, beat or otherwise physically abuse prisoners. Zoran Zigic is charged with 5 counts of Grave Breaches of the Geneva Conventions, 5 counts of Violations of the Laws or Customs of War, and 5 counts of Crimes against Humanity.
Keraterm camp indictment:
According to the indictment, Zoran Zigic frequently entered the camp and killed, beat or otherwise abused detainees. Zoran Zigic is charged with 17 counts of Grave Breaches of the Geneva Conventions, 17 counts of Violations of the Laws or Customs of War, and 20 counts of Crimes against Humanity.