UN War Crimes Prosecutor Demands Seselj Detention After Threats

Serb nationalist leader Vojislav Seselj must be brought back to detention, prosecutors at the United Nations war crimes court for the former Yugoslavia said after he made threats that heightened tensions in the Balkans.

Released last month for health reasons after almost 12 years in detention without a verdict, Seselj pledged to topple Premier Minister Aleksandar Vucic and pursue the creation of a Greater Serbia. The suspect, accused of crimes against humanity, must return to jail as he made threats against people who cooperate with the prosecution, according to a statement by prosecutor Serge Brammertz.

Seselj “clearly demonstrated that his health condition is no barrier to making unacceptable public statements that are inflammatory and insulting to victims of the 1990s Balkan wars,” Brammertz said.

Seselj’s party, the proponents of Greater Serbia that would also include Montenegro and parts of Bosnia and Croatia, were allies of late Serbian leader Slobodan Milosevic. Premier Vucic, Seselj’s ex-protegee who now leads the Progressive Party with other former members of his Radical Party, has abandoned his expansionist aims and is preparing the country for European Union entry as soon as 2020.

The European Parliament last week passed a resolution sponsored by Serbia’s wartime foe Croatia asking the court to reconsider the freeing of Seselj and urging Serbian authorities to distance themselves from him.

Vucic said that Serbia’s policies are far from Seselj’s goals and that his government never asked the tribunal to release the him.

Seselj vowed never to return to captivity voluntarily, another violation of the terms of his temporary release, the prosecutor said.

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