Serbia to File 2 More Lawsuits Against NATO Over Uranium Bombing
14:39 GMT 13.01.2022 (Updated: 14:40 GMT 13.01.2022)
© AP Photo / Dimitri MessinisBombing of Belgrade by NATO forces
© AP Photo / Dimitri Messinis
BELGRADE (Sputnik) - Two new lawsuits against NATO will be brought to the Higher Court in Belgrade on behalf of Serbian victims of the 1999 depleted uranium bombing in Yugoslavia, a year after the first claim over the issue was filed, lawyer Srdjan Aleksic told Sputnik.
The first lawsuit, over 20 years after the bombing, was filed in January 2021. Aleksic was working on material evidence to represent the interests of a Yugoslavian officer with cancer because of the airstrikes.
"On January 20, we are filing two new lawsuits in Belgrade from two victims and we hope that then every month, we will file two or three more [lawsuits]. It takes time and money for the work of an expert in explosives and weapons and a medical examiner's conclusion. It must be clearly proved that NATO carried out depleted uranium bombings where the plaintiffs were located. It also has to be proved that the plaintiffs' cancer has been caused by radiation from NATO uranium," Aleksic said.
NATO could have used conventional weapons; however, it chose to use depleted uranium on the territory of Serbia, the lawyer went on, which will have a detrimental effect on people for many years to come.
"This is a war crime and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization must compensate for damage to the Serbian citizens," Aleksic said.
16 May 2019, 11:13 GMT
The lawyer added that last year's claim was forwarded to NATO headquarters, but so far without acknowledgment of having been received. However, the Higher Court in Belgrade may pass a verdict to NATO even if the alliance does not take part in the proceedings under the Serbian legislation, Aleksic explained.
Aleksic is seeking compensation of at least 300,000 euros ($344,000) for each Serbian victim, as it was for the western European military who were exposed to a dangerous amount of radiation during their service at NATO.
NATO airstrikes continued from March 24 to June 10, 1999, claiming an unknown number of lives. The Serbian authorities say that about 2,500 people, including 89 children, were killed and about 12,500 people were injured in the bombings. Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic said that the use of depleted uranium weapons caused an increase in the number of cancer patients in the country.
31 October 2019, 08:33 GMT