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Fugitive Serb Drew Pension Until Recently

January 04, 2006|From Reuters

BELGRADE, Serbia and Montenegro — Bosnian Serb war crimes fugitive Ratko Mladic drew his general's pension until last November while a fugitive, Serbia and Montenegro acknowledged.

Two government ministers said an investigation revealed that Mladic had authorized his wife, son and two army officers to pick up his monthly check about the time he dropped out of sight to avoid arrest in 2001.

Prosecutors at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia in The Hague say Mladic is being sheltered by Serbian nationalists.

The arrest or surrender of Mladic is a key condition for Serbia's advancement toward membership in the European Union and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.

Defense Minister Zoran Stankovic, once a confidant of Mladic, told Tanjug news agency that the former commander's son was picking up his pension in mid-November. The two officers, one still active, had never collected any money, he said.

Mladic is wanted on charges of genocide in the Bosnian war.

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