Security Information AgencyБезбедносно-информативна агенција

Mladić seen in the vicinity of Kruševac, Niš And Belgrade

BIA in media / Blic - December 22, 2008

According to citizens’ information reported by the phone number 9191 on the whereabouts of Ratko Mladić, the Security-Information Agency operatives have been searching for the most wanted Hague fugitive in Niš, village of Petina near Kruševac and in the Belgrade neighborhood Cerak...

 - We received information from Niš, and that for some University professors, who during their teaching had contacts with the Republic of Serbska war leadership. The information that Mladić was seen hunting in the village of Petina was an important clue, because in that village Milan Martić was also hiding, was obtained from citizens. There was also several information that Mladić was hiding in Cerak. In addition, according to that information serious checks were carried out because of the large number of military officers and pensioners who are living in that Belgrade neighborhood, said for “Blic” Jovan Stojić, the BIA Director Chief of Cabinet.

This information did not produce concrete results, however, stated Stojić, but if there is any information of citizens that appears to be a serious lead, only the BIA Director is informed about it.  

- For all the rest in the BIA, such information is a secret, and even for those who received it, because their task is completed when they inform the colleagues from the competent operational Department. Before that, a check is done in the BIA database on the individual who gave the information, but also on those, whom the information relates to, said Stojić. Information from citizens received by the telephone regarding the whereabouts on Mladić and about all other information of security interest, as are counterintelligence data, knowledge on extremism, terrorism, organized crime merge at the BIA Operational Duty Centre in the BIA headquarters building.

The entrance is secured by X-ray machine and metal detector door through which the employees are being checked as well as citizens who come for talks if their information seems important. This BIA Unite is connected with the MUP Operational Centre, with whose members the information is exchanged.

Entry into the premises of the BIA Duty Operational Centre is restricted. Access to these premises has some twenty operatives working in different shifts. Only the members of this BIA Unite have magnetic cards for access to offices equipped with several telephones and computers.

- Exclusively experienced operatives work at the Duty Operational Centre. These operatives are able to evaluate the seriousness of the information, to ask the right questions for obtaining real operational leads while communicating with citizens, and they know what kind of and how big a protection can be offered to those who give the information with certain level of danger, explained Stojić. The majority of citizen who report to BIA serious information introduce themselves to the operatives who answer the phone number 9191.

- Regarding the information on Mladić, the majority present themselves and a forehand dissociate from the authenticity of this information. They mainly state their knowledge or doubt and say: “I might be wrong. Please check.” The number of anonymous calls is very low. In these cases, mostly regarding economic crime, people are afraid of a revenge of the denounced individual. There are also those who insult, swear and whose calls are motivated by party-political interests – said Stojić.

After examining serious information it is passed on to the BIA Special Operational Unit, whose main task now is the pursuit of the two Hague fugitives Ratko Mladić and Goran Hadžić.

- Even if they wished, the operatives of the Duty Operational Centre as well as employees of other organizational unites cannot find out what happens with the acquired information. Such knowledge is a secret and falls under penal responsibility if revealed either to the public or other colleagues – said Stojić. He stated that all information is checked in the shortest possible period and that the pursuit of Mladić is not conducted only according to the information received at the Duty Operational Centre or given to BIA operatives on private basis.

- In the pursuit of Mladić a wide range of measures and actions are taken.  The BIA does not wait to get the information on Mladić’s whereabouts but in pursuing him, we create our own circumstances, investigation and checks – said Stojić.

All received information is checked

“If I tell you where Mladić is, who is going to give me the money?” is one of the most frequent questions that citizens begin their conversation with the BIA operatives. The Government of Serbia posted a million Euros reward for information on Mladić that would lead to his detention and 250,000 Euros for information on Goran Hadžić. The BIA Director Chief of Cabinet Jovan Stojić said that besides serious information there are also those that are at the edge of reality. People obsessed by security services call claiming that the CIA watches them, that a chip has been built in their head by the service, that our employees, who do not allow them to find a job, mistreat them. Majority of these calls are accompanied by murder threats and for that reason each such case is seriously checked – said Stojić.