Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

FRANCE IN FOCUS

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Read more

FOCUS

Lifting the veil over China's air pollution

Read more

ENCORE!

Tango Takeover in Paris

Read more

WEB NEWS

Calls for ISIS media blackout after execution of James Foley

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'Steely resolve of reporters exploited by pared-down employers'

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

US judge calls Argentina bond swap offer illegal

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Cécile Duflot ruffles some feathers

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Media accused of pro-protester bias in Ferguson

Read more

DEBATE

The Murderous Lure of Jihad: Tackling ISIS and its Worldwide Recruitment (part 2)

Read more

  • US demands Russia withdraw aid convoy from Ukraine

    Read more

  • Besieged by problems, Hollande faces unhappy return from summer holidays

    Read more

  • Central African Republic announces coalition cabinet

    Read more

  • August 22, 1914: The bloodiest day in French military history

    Read more

  • Gunmen kill scores in Iraqi Sunni mosque attack

    Read more

  • Hamas publicly executes "informers"

    Read more

  • French firebrand leftist to quit party presidency, but not politics

    Read more

  • Fear of Ebola sky-high among Air France workers

    Read more

  • US says Islamic State threat 'beyond anything we've seen'

    Read more

  • Malaysia mourns as remains of MH17 victims arrive home

    Read more

  • Turkish Foreign Minister Davutoglu set to be Erdogan's new PM

    Read more

  • Hollande is ‘nobody’s president’ says former French minister

    Read more

  • Two US Ebola patients leave hospital ‘virus-free’

    Read more

  • US reaches historic $16.7bn settlement with Bank of America

    Read more

  • Interactive: Relive the Liberation of Paris in WWII

    Read more

Europe

Court enters not guilty plea as Mladic disrupts hearing

Video by FRANCE 24

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2011-07-04

Ex-Bosnian Serb army chief Ratko Mladic appeared before a UN crimes court Monday, despite earlier statements he would boycott the procedure. The hearing was adjourned after Mladic was expelled from the courtroom for obstreperous behaviour.

Reuters - Former Bosnian Serb army chief Ratko Mladic was removed from the U.N. war crimes court at The Hague on Monday after refusing to enter a plea and disrupting the judge’s attempts to read out the charges against him.

The judge later entered formal pleas of not guilty on behalf of Mladic to the various charges against him, which include genocide, and relate to the 43-month siege of the Bosnian capital Sarajevo and the massacre of 8,000 Muslim men and boys in Srebrenica—Europe’s worst massacre since World War Two.

Having threatened to boycott his second hearing since being tracked down, arrested and extradited from Serbia in May, Mladic did appear but spent several minutes demanding different legal representation and requesting a delay before having to plead.

“No, no, I’m not going to listen to this without my lawyer,” Mladic shouted as he removed his translation headphones when judge Alphons Orie began reading out the charges.

“Who are you? You’re not allowing me to breathe.”

Mladic, 69, was represented by a court-appointed lawyer.

The judge said the court would look into allowing him to be represented in future by other lawywers of his choice.

Arrested after 16 years on the run, Mladic had defiantly rejected war crimes charges against him as “obnoxious” and “monstrous” when he was formally charged at the Yugoslavia war crimes court last month.

GENOCIDE LAWSUIT

Mladic is accused over a campaign to seize territory for Serbs after Bosnia, following Croatia, broke away from the Yugoslav federation in the 1990s as the Balkan state broke up during five years of war that killed at least 130,000 people.

The stakes are high for Serbia because Mladic’s trial could unearth evidence showing Belgrade knew about or helped commit genocide at Srebrenica if Mladic argues he was carrying out orders, or the desires, of political leaders.

The International Court of Justice ruled in 2007 that Serbia failed to prevent genocide, but was not responsible for it. The decision shielded Serbia from compensation claims from Bosnia.

“If they (Serb authorities) were more strongly involved, the conclusion would still be the same that they did not prevent genocide, but because of their involvement there might be reasons to reopen the issue of compensation,” said Andre de Hoogh, a lecturer in international law at Groningen University.

Hague prosecutor Serge Brammertz has said Mladic used his power to commit atrocities and must answer for it, but Serb nationalists say Mladic defended the nation and did no worse than Croat or Bosnian Muslim army commanders.

Mladic, who has said he is a “gravely ill” man, is no longer in the prison hospital and now plays chess with other detainees. He argued last month he only defended his country and people.
 

Date created : 2011-07-04

  • JUSTICE

    Mladic faces war crimes tribunal

    Read more

  • SERBIA Q&A

    'A severe pronouncement of Serbian victimhood'

    Read more

  • SERBIA

    Clashes erupt as thousands protest Mladic arrest

    Read more

COMMENT(S)