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Hague Court to Consider Transferring War Crimes Cases to Balkan Countries

The United Nations War Crimes Tribunal in The Hague will hold the first of a series of hearings Thursday on whether to transfer cases against 18 suspects to national courts in the Balkans.

Court spokesman Jim Landale told VOA the tribunal will consider a prosecution motion to transfer the cases against war crimes suspects Mirko Norac and Rahim Ademi to courts in Croatia.

The two, both Croatian army officers, are accused of killing Serb civilians in Croatia's Medak pocket in 1993.

He said the court will hold several more hearings against other suspects in coming months. The Hague court is scheduled to complete all its activities by 2010.

The prosecution calls the nine cases a "first batch" and says other cases may be moved to the Balkans later to allow The Hague tribunal to deal with more important trials.

Some information for this report provided by AP.