22 July 2011 The last remaining fugitive from the United Nations war crimes tribunal for the Balkans was today transferred to the court’s custody, two days after his arrest by authorities in Serbia following seven years at large.
Goran Hadic, the former president of the self-proclaimed Republic of Serbian Krajina, is charged with war crimes and crimes against humanity in relation to his alleged actions in eastern Slavonia, Croatia, from August 1991 to June 1992. The charges include murder, persecutions, torture, imprisonment, deportations, cruel treatment, inhumane acts and wanton destruction.
The International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), which is based in The Hague in the Netherlands, said in a press statement that Mr. Hadic has been admitted to the UN Detention Unit and will make his initial appearance before the court on Monday, when he will be asked to enter a plea to the charges.
Mr. Hadic stands accused of participating in a joint criminal enterprise – along with the late former Serbian leader Slobodan Miloševic and three others – to permanently remove a majority of the Croat and other non-Serb population from about a third of the territory of Croatia, with the aim of establishing a new Serb-dominated State.
The indictment states that Mr. Hadic was involved in the removal of 264 civilians from a hospital in Vukovar in November 1991 after the Serb takeover of the city. The civilians were transported to several locations where they were beaten and tortured before being executed and buried in a mass grave at a remote site.
The allegations also include that Mr. Hadic was responsible for the imprisonment of thousands of civilians in a number of detention facilities.
“The living conditions in the detention facilities were brutal and characterized by inhumane treatment, overcrowding, starvation, forced labour, inadequate medical care, and constant physical and psychological assault, including mock executions, torture, beatings and sexual assault,” according to the indictment.
Mr. Hadic will be the last of 161 persons indicted by the ICTY to come before the court.
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