Serb war crimes suspect Seselj to be judged in absence

Vojislav Seselj, a firebrand Serb nationalist, faces charges of ethnic cleansing against Croats, Muslims and other non-Serbs during the brutal Balkan wars in the 1990sUN war crimes judges will deliver their verdict against radical Serb leader Vojislav Seselj in his absence for medical reasons, the court announced Wednesday, after the firebrand nationalist refused to return to The Hague. Seselj’s judgement on nine charges of war crimes and crimes against humanity will be delivered at 0800 GMT on March 31 “in the absence of the accused”, the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia’s (ICTY) judges ordered. It is the first time that judges at the ICTY will hand down an initial verdict without the accused in court — although defendants have been absent for appeals judgements.

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