The Bosnian Prosecution on Friday said it was probing suspicions that Security Minister Dragan Mektic had misused his office – which Mektic has attributed to the fact that he has called the prosecution office useless and corrupt.
The Bosnian Prosecutors Office on Friday said it had launched an investigation into Dragan Mektic, the Bosnian Security Minister, over suspicions that he had abused his authority, revealed secret information and given false testimony.
“The basis of the suspicion arises that … the Minister of Security … obtained certain confidential information, and then in different ways… shared it with people who have no right to access classified information,” the Prosecution Office said on Friday.
It added that Mektic allegedly “gave false testimony in the Prosecutors Office, which caused severe consequences for security, the rule of law and the reputation of Bosnia”.
The press release said the investigation would be treated as confidential.
Mektic told BIRN that the claims were nonsense. “The prosecution, which should be dealing with the fight against massive and serious organised crime, is dealing with its critics – and I am one of them. I’m a critic because I claim they are corrupt, incompetent and criminalized,” Mektic told BIRN.
“I have no idea on what cases the Prosecutors Office is referring to … you have to ask them … this is an attempt to prevent me from doing my work, but they will not succeed,” Mektic repeated at a press conference on Friday.
Mektic earlier this month said the state prosecution was unfit to probe his own claims that Croatian intelligence had tried to portray Bosnia as a terrorist hub by smuggling weapons into Muslim villages that would then be uncovered, as the news site Zurnal.info had written.
“The security sector has no confidence in this prosecution and its chief prosecutor. They have to know this and consider it In the High Judicial and Prosecutorial Council of Bosnia,” Mektic told the regional TV station N1 on March 15.
Mektic also criticised the state prosecution in January 2018, after confirming another piece of research by Zurnal.info.
This said that a militia group called “Serbian Honour”, which had been trained at the Russian-funded humanitarian centre in Nis in Serbia, was in the process of setting up a paramilitary group in Bosnia that might be used against opponents of Bosnian Serb leader Milorad Dodik.
The conflict between Bosnia’s Security Minister and Chief Prosecutor Gordana Tadic started in 2017, when Tadic claimed she has been put under monitoring.
Mektic denied it and accused the prosecutor of making wild allegations without checking them first.
“This is an attack on SIPA, an attack intended to destroy the dignity of this agency,” Mektic told the media in September 2017, referring to the state intelligence agency.
He also said that Tadic’s office “should be levelled to the ground” because of all the crime and corruption going on there.
The police, judicial and intelligence services in Bosnia are rife with ethnic and political feuds and are the subject of many conspiracy theories.
In 2017, Dzevad Galijasevic, a political analyst, accused the Bosniak member of the country’s tripartite presidency, Bakir Izetbegovic, of preparing intelligence operations to create a “suitable climate” for an attack on Republika Srpska, Bosnia’s Serb-dominated political entity.
Shortly after, a former Bosnian army general, Atif Dudakovic, called on all Bosniaks over 17 years old to buy uniforms, boots, backpacks and sleeping bags, during a speech to Bosniaks in Luxembourg.