Karadžić refuses to enter a plea under new indictment 03 Mar 2009
Trial Chamber III enters a plea of 'not guilty' on behalf of Radovan Karadžić after he refuses to enter a plea.

Radovan Karadzic in court

On 3 March 2009 Trial Chamber III at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) entered a plea of ‘not guilty’ on behalf of Radovan Karadžić after he refused to enter a plea.  Radovan Karadžić was asked to enter a plea to new charges brought against him in a third amended indictment filed last week.

Under this amended indictment, Radovan Karadžić is now charged with two counts of genocide rather than one, after the Prosecution removed one charge of complicity in genocide and split the single count of genocide into two. The genocide counts now correspond to two separate time periods: the first relating to crimes committed in Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1992 and the second to the 1995 massacre in Srebrenica.

Radovan Karadžić is now accused of 11 counts of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. The charges refer to 27 municipalities (instead of 41 in the previous indictment) and the participation in a joint criminal enterprise is specified as the form of co-perpetration.

“Clerical Mistake”

At the time of his arrest, Radovan Karadžić was indicted under a first amended indictment, dated of 2000. In 2008, the Prosecutor indicated to the Chamber its desire to update this indictment to take into account the important jurisprudence of the ICTY during the last eight years. On 16 February 2009, the Trial Chamber partially granted the amendment proposed by the Prosecutor, who then filed a Second amended indictment.

However, on 26 February 2009, the Trial Chamber decided to reconsider its decision of 16 February to only partially grant the proposed amendments. A Third Amended Indictment was then filed, on which Radovan Karadžić was requested to plead today. The last modifications are exclusively in connection with the alleged murders of 140 detainees at the Sušica camp on or around the 30 September 1992. The Trial Chamber had first determined that the charges were not adequately supported. The Prosecution responded to this decision by saying that it was a clerical mistake and therefore asked the Trial Chamber to reconsider its 16 February 2009 decision; which it accepted to do.

When arrested in July 2008, Radovan Karadžić, former President of the self-proclaimed Republika Srpska and commander of the Bosnian Serb Army (VRS) during the war in Bosnia, was one of the last ICTY indictees to remain at large. With Ratko Mladić, who is still at large, he is considered to be one those bearing the most responsibility for the atrocities committed during the war in Bosnia.

Radovan Karadžić

International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia

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Court Documents / Documents juridiques

Third Amended Indictment
27 February 2009

Related news items / Informations complémentaires

New Indictment against Radovan Karadžić
Nouvel acte d'accusation contre Radovan Karadžić
18 February 2009

Commentaries / Commentaires

Karadžić on Trial: Two Procedural Problems
Karadžić face aux juges : deux problèmes de procédure

Professor Göran Sluiter

ICTY enters plea of not guilty on behalf of Karadzic
3 March 2009

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