Italy will provide support to Serbia in its investigations into the effects of the 1999 NATO air strikes, a senior Italian official said in Belgrade on Friday.
Gian Piero Scanu, head of the parliamentary commission investigating the effects of depleted uranium munitions, said that his commission found that 400 Italian soldiers had contracted ailments caused by depleted uranium in the Balkans and Afghanistan. He said that the responsible military chiefs had been charged and sentenced following the commission’s investigation.
Scanu’s commission will hand its Serbian counterpart commission its entire archive of testimonies and results of investigations and tests into pollution and ailments among the population.
The head of the Serbian parliamentary commission on depleted uranium, Darko Laketic said the Italian commission members agreed to act as consultants. Italy will also make its team of lawyers available to Serbia, he said.
Laketic and Scanu and said they will ask the European Union to finance the investigation in Serbia and the treatment of people with ailments caused by depleted uranium munitions if necessary.
Laketic said the commission’s first session will be held in the southern Serbian town of Vranje with a tour of nine contaminated sites planned after the session.