NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 27 – Police in Mombasa arrested a man on Thursday on suspicion that he may be wanted by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia over war crimes.
Police Spokesman Erick Kiraithe said the suspect was being interrogated and would be handed over to the Interpol for further investigations.
“His fingerprints will be taken and we will have officers from the Interpol to assist us,” he said and declined to release the suspect’s name.
In a telephone interview, Mr Kiraithe told Capital News that he was not willing to divulge any further details ‘because the investigations are at a primary stage’.
“I can only confirm that yes indeed, we have a suspect in our custody who was arrested because we suspect he is wanted by the tribunal in the former Yugoslavia. I can not name him at the moment until the investigations are finalised,” he said.
So far, he said: “The suspect has told our officers he is an international investor with vast interests in the hotel industry. Our officers are trying to ascertain all this. If he is innocent, he will be set free.”
Police suspect the man is wanted by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) which was established to try genocide suspects.
The tribunal has since indicted 161 suspects, who have all been arrested save for two – former Bosnian Serb military chief Gen. Ratko Mladic and former Croatian Serb leader Goran Hadzic.
The ICTY website shows that Mladic, 67, is wanted for genocide, complicity in Genocide, Crimes against Humanity and violations of the laws or customs of war.
Once captured, Mladic will face charges of masterminding the July 1995 massacre in Srebenica, where atleast 8000 Muslim men and boys were killed by Serb forces.
He will also face charges related to the terror inflicted upon civilians during the 1992-1995 siege of Sarajevo and the widespread campaign of persecutions, deportation, torture and murders during 1992 in large parts of Bosnia and Herzegovina, including infamous detention camps like Omarska, Keraterm, Manjača and Trnopolje in northwestern Bosnia and Herzegovina.
He has been on the run for 13 years.
Hadzic, 50, is also wanted for Crimes against humanity and violations of the laws or customs of war in Croatia and the murder and persecution of the Croat and non-Serb civilian population.
The ICTY will also charge him for the prolonged imprisonment of civilians in detention facilities where torture, beatings and killing was not uncommon and the forcible transfer of tens of thousands of non-Serbs from across the area under his control.