Serbian government and defense officials were to meet Thursday to coordinate their efforts to capture suspected war criminals and avoid possibility of a new isolation. The meeting came a day after Deputy Prime Minister Miroljub Labus warned that Serbia could lose its chance of becoming an EU member because of its failure to track down and extradite suspects sought the U.N. war crimes tribunal.
Labus chaired a meeting Wednesday with EU representatives on preparations needed for the country to become a candidate for membership in the 25-nation bloc. He suggested that the EU may suspend the talks if the most wanted men, former Bosnian Serb leaders Radovan Karadzic and Gen. Ratko Mladic, remain free.
Officials from Montenegro have warned that their tiny republic might sever ties with Serbia if the unresolved issue of war crimes suspects, mainly Serbia's responsibility, continues to hamper joint efforts for closer ties with the EU and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.
Despite numerous attempts to capture Karadzic and Mladic, the government has said they no longer be in Serbia. However, a recent U.N. report said Belgrade had not enough in trying to locate the pair, reports the AP. I.L.