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Karadzic Refuses To Respond To Amended Indictment

Radovan Karadzic
AMSTERDAM (Reuters) -- Former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic refused to respond to a motion on an amended prosecution indictment on October 28, saying his case at the Yugoslavian war crimes tribunal was moving too quickly.

Karadzic told the court he was only sent the new indictment on October 27 in his native Serbian language and that he is still awaiting supporting material from the prosecution.

"I am not prepared for this conference," he said, adding that he hopes soon to have a team of legal advisers in place to assist in his defence.

Prosecutors filed the amended indictment in September, asking UN tribunal judges to approve war crimes and genocide charges that they say will lead to a more efficient trial.

Presiding pre-trial Judge Iain Bonomy previously entered a plea of "not guilty" for Karadzic on August 29 after he refused to plead on his own behalf to the initial indictment.

Bonomy, who chairs a working group aimed at speeding up tribunal trials, said he was disappointed by the slow progress of the proceedings.

In almost three months since Karadzic first appeared at the tribunal, the case has gone virtually nowhere, he said.

He tentatively set January 20 as a date for a new status conference.

Prosecutors said Karadzic will be supplied with the amended indictment's supporting material by the end of the week, after which he will have 14 days to respond.

If the court decides to accept the amended charges, Karadzic will need to enter a new plea.