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15 February 1963|
Priboj, SR Serbia, SFR Yugoslavia
|Died||27 June 2007
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina
|Unit||9th Mountain Brigade (I Corps (Bosnia and Herzegovina)|
|Commands held||Deputy Commander of 9th mbr. in Sarajevo|
Siege of Sarajevo
Ramiz Delalić (15 February 1963 – 27 June 2007), widely known by his nickname Ćelo (pronounced: Chelo[nb 1]), was the commander of the 9th Mountain Brigade in Sarajevo, and gained notoriety as the main suspect who stood trial before a local court for the killing of Nikola Gardović on 1 March 1992. The murder, taking place during a Serb wedding in front of the old Orthodox Church in Sarajevo, is an event many Serbians consider as the criminal act that triggered the 1992-95 war.[by whom?] The accusations for this killing were never proven.
Delalić was also one of several prominent underworld figures who helped to defend Sarajevo during the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Despite the rumours surrounding him later during the war, namely his purported racketeering and extortion rings, his acts during the wartime were still considered[by whom?] far less controversial when compared to other local warlords, such as Jusuf "Juka" Prazina. Unlike Prazina and some other local gangsters, Delalić remained loyal and obedient to official Bosnian political and military authorities through the entire war-period, and it is even assumed that he was very close with Bosnian president Alija Izetbegović.[by whom?]
Delalić was gunned down at the entrance to his apartment building in the center of Sarajevo, on 27 June 2007. The killer waited for Delalić and fired at him on two separate occasions, each time with multiple shots. The murder weapon was likely a Heckler & Koch MP5. Immediately after the shooting, an ambulance arrived, though doctors pronounced Delalić dead shortly after. Lirim Bytyqi (Bitići), called "Svrka"—an ethnic Albanian, citizen of Serbia—and another person whose identity is partially known to the police, were pointed out as murder suspects. Although there is no official evidence to date, several of Delalić's friends and associates claimed that the leader of an Albanian rival mob in Sarajevo and Delalić's longtime enemy, Muhamed Ali Gaši, is likely to have ordered the hit.
Ramiz Delalić was buried in the martyr's cemetery "Kovači", in Sarajevo.
- The word means "baldy" - a common nickname in Sarajevo for criminals, because their heads were shaven during their time spent in prison