News / Europe

Lawyer Warns Mladic Will Die Before Trial

Milos Saljic, the lawyer of Ratko Mladic (C) talks to members of the media in Belgrade, Serbia, May 30, 2011
Milos Saljic, the lawyer of Ratko Mladic (C) talks to members of the media in Belgrade, Serbia, May 30, 2011
Stefan Bos

The lawyer for war-crimes suspect Ratko Mladic says the former general has serious health problems and could die before the start of his trial on genocide charges. For that reason, attorney Milos Saljic said he will appeal the planned extradition of Mladic to the Netherlands-based U.N. War Crimes Tribunal.

Monday was the last day that Ratko Mladic could appeal a court decision to extradite him to the U.N. War Crimes Tribunal in The Hague.

Standing outside a court in Belgrade, Saljic told reporters he would file Mladic's appeal against extradition by mail. He said his client has suffered several strokes and is too ill to face trial in the Netherlands.

He said Mladic's health situation "is alarming" and that he demands an investigation by independent medical experts. Saljic added that Mladic is so ill that he will not be alive when the trial starts.

But prosecutors called the appeal on medical grounds "delaying tactics" and said they expected Mladic's extradition within four days.

Prosecutors said the 69-year-old former general, who was detained last week in a village north of Belgrade, is fit enough to face trial on several charges, including genocide.

Troops under his command allegedly killed up to 8,000 Muslim men and boys in the Bosnian town of Srebrenica in 1995. He also has been accused of overseeing the 43-month siege of the Bosnian city of Sarajevo when troops fired from nearby mountains, killing more than 11,000 people, including many children.

Mladic has denied wrongdoing and there have been protests against his arrest.

Protesters throwing stones and bottles clashed late Sunday with baton-wielding riot police in Belgrade. About 180 people were detained and dozens injured in the clashes.

The opposition Serbian Radical Party said the pro-Western government is bowing to pressure of the United States and European Union as it seeks EU membership.

In an interview with Dutch public broadcaster NOS, however, Serbian President Boris Tadic denied these accusations.

"This is not because of pressure of politicians from Holland, from European Union, from everywhere," he said. "This is because of us. This is because of [our] values. We are living in these region in which we have to reconcile to each other. We are living in a country in which we have to establish [the] rule of law."

Tadic also wants to know how Mladic managed to escaped detention for 16 years.

“How he organized the network of protection? For me it is very important to extend the investigation right now about who protected him. To investigate people that were involved in the protection," said Tadic. "Are they from the state structure, from the military, police? I am sure that in the beginning of his efforts he has been protected by those kind of people. For example, retired officers and the police people."

And that investigation has just begun.

You May Like

China Investigates Former Powerful Security Chief

Former security chief and member of Politburo Standing Committee, Zhou Yongkang, under investigation for suspected 'serious disciplinary violation' More

India, US Look to Reset Ties During Kerry Visit

This week's talks will be first high level interaction between two countries since Prime Minister Narendra Modi took charge More

Video Young African Leadership Program Renamed to Honor Mandela

YALI program, launched by President Obama in 2010, aims to build skills in business, entrepreneurship, public management and civic leadership More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spati
X
Reasey Poch
July 28, 2014 7:18 PM
China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video ESA Spacecraft to Land on a Comet

After a long flight through deep space, a European Space Agency probe is finally approaching its target -- a comet millions of kilometers away from earth. Scientists say the mission may lead to some startling discoveries about the origins of the water on earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Young Africans Arrive in US for Leadership Program

President Barack Obama's Young African Leadership Initiative has brought hundreds of young Africans to the United States for a six-week program aimed at building their knowledge and skills in fields such as public administration and business. Out of the 50,000 young Africans who applied for the program, just one percent was accepted. VOA's Laurel Bowman caught up with some of those who made the cut and has this report.
Video

Video In Honduras, Amnesty Rumors Fuel US Migration Surges

False rumors in Central America are fueling the current surge of undocumented young people being apprehended at the U.S. border. The inaccurate claims suggest the U.S. will give amnesty to young migrants from the region. As VOA's Brian Padden reports from Honduras, these rumors trace back to President Obama's 2012 executive order to halt deportations for some young undocumented immigrants already living in the United States.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid