Karadzic Misses First Day of Genocide Trial
Posted on Oct 26, 2009
Former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic was a no-show Monday at his own trial at The Hague, where he was scheduled to stand trial on charges of genocide against Bosnian Muslims in the mid-1990s. The proceedings were expected to continue Tuesday regardless of his participation, or lack thereof, in court. —KA
The New York Times:
Even from his cell, Mr. Karadzic, a former psychiatrist turned extreme Serbian nationalist, managed to distress a number of the victims’ families. More than 160 people had made the 24-hour trek by bus from Bosnia to the United Nations war crimes tribunal in The Hague, and part of the group watched through the bulletproof glass of the public gallery.
As the short session closed, many in the group shouted in anger and frustration. Munira Subasic, one of the organizers of the group, said the majority had to return to Bosnia during the night because they had no money for hotel rooms. Several women who said they had lost husbands and sons in the war said they felt betrayed by the court.
The judge, O-gon Kwon, last week wrote a private letter to Mr. Karadzic, asking him to reconsider his position not to attend. Mr. Karadzic had announced his absence in a letter to the court, after he lost his appeal requesting more preparation time.
AP / Valerie Kuypers, Pool
In this 2008 photo, former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic appears in the courtroom to enter pleas to 11 charges, including genocide and crimes against humanity, at the United Nations’ Yugoslav war crimes tribunal at The Hague, Netherlands.