02 MAR 2011
By David Brunnstrom
BRUSSELS, March 2 (Reuters) - A draft European Commission report on Croatia expected to be approved on Wednesday expressed concern about shortcomings in judicial reform, fighting corruption and in prosecuting war crimes' suspects.
Diplomats said the draft report, a copy of which was seen by Reuters, raised doubts about the country's ability to complete EU accession talks in June.
While noting progress in strengthening the independence and impartiality of the judiciary, the report said Croatia had not yet established a convincing track record in appointing judges and prosecutors based on uniform and transparent criteria.
The internal report, which EU commissioners are expected to approve on Wednesday, noted progress in establishing a track record for impartial handling of war crimes' trials resulting from the 1990s conflict in the former Yugoslavia, but added:
"The issue of impunity for cases which have not been investigated or prosecuted has not been properly addressed, and the new strategy to ensure the proper investigation and prosecution of such crimes has not yet been implemented."
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