Belgrade – The Simon Wiesenthal Center today warmly welcomed the decision, announced here today at a press conference convened by Serbian Justice Minister Snežana Malovic and chief war crimes prosecutor Vladimir Vukčevic with the participation of the Center’s chief Nazi-hunter Dr. Efraim Zuroff to seek the extradition of three Nazi war criminals, two of whom were discovered and exposed in the framework of the Center’s “Operation: Last Chance” project. The criminals in question are former Hungarian gendarmerie officer Dr. Sandor Kepiro, currently residing in Budapest Hungary; former Ustasha police chief of Požega, Croatia Milivoj Ašner, currently residing in Klagenfurt, Austria and former Belgrade Security Police operative Peter Egner, currently residing in Seattle, Washington, USA. The first two were found and exposed by the Wiesenthal Center.
In his remarks at the press conference, Dr. Zuroff stressed the practical and symbolic significance of the decision and praised the new Serbian government for undertaking this step which had hereto merely been discussed by its predecessors.
According to Zuroff:
“In today’s circumstances, in which the most difficult part of bringing Nazi war criminals to justice is often the lack of political will of governments to take the necessary action, Serbia’s decision to seek the extradition of Kepiro, Ašner and Egner sends a powerful message that the passage of time in no way diminishes the guilt of the murderers and that it is still possible to bring the perpetrators of the Holocaust to the bar of justice. We hope that these requests will be issued as quickly as possible to maximize their impact.”
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