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UN court slaps Karadzic with 146,000-euro defence bill

11 October 2012, 17:00 CET
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(THE HAGUE) - The UN's Yugoslav war crimes court has slapped Bosnian Serb wartime leader Radovan Karadzic with a 146,000 euro ($188,000) bill to help pay for his defence, the court announced Thursday.

The Hague-based tribunal "decides... that the accused shall contribute 146,501 euros to the cost of his defence," the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia's registrar John Hocking said in a document.

It did not give a total amount needed to pay lawyers helping the former Bosnian Serb strongman, who represents himself, but added "with the exception of the accused's contribution expenses... shall be borne by the Tribunal."

His trial before the Hague-based court opened in October 2009 and he faces 10 charges of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity for his part in Bosnia's brutal 1992-95 conflict which took 100,000 lives and left 2.2 million others homeless.

Arrested on a Belgrade bus in 2008 after years on the run, Karadzic was wanted in particular for allegedly masterminding the killings that followed the Serbs' capture of the eastern Bosnian enclave of Srebrenica in July 1995.

Close to 8,000 Muslim men and boys were murdered over the course of a few days in Europe's worst atrocity since World War II -- an incident for which Karadzic has denied responsibility.

Now 67, a plea of not guilty was entered on his behalf in the initial stages of his case and he has since sought an acquittal on all counts.

Prosecutors wrapped up their case against the former president of the self-proclaimed Republika Srpska in May and judges dropped one genocide charge against him the following month.

Judges said there was not enough evidence to substantiate the definition of genocide in relation to killings by Bosnian Serb forces in towns and villages in Bosnia from March to December 1992.

Karadzic is to open his defence before the ICTY's judges on Tuesday.

His military alter ego, Bosnian Serb ex-army chief Ratko Mladic, is also on trial before the ICTY on similar charges after his own arrest in northern Serbia last year after 16 years on the run.

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