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Karadzic Due To Deliver Closing Remarks

Radovan Karadzic, who is defending himself, will make his closing arguments at his genocide trial.
Radovan Karadzic, who is defending himself, will make his closing arguments at his genocide trial.

Former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic has begun delivering his closing statement at a UN tribunal in The Hague, saying “all Serbs" were on trial.

The 69-year-old Karadzic, who was president of the self-proclaimed Bosnian Serb republic, faces 11 charges for his role in the 1992-1995 Bosnia war.

Karadzic, who is leading his own defense, denies the charges of war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide over events including the Srebrenica massacre in which more than 7,500 Muslim men and boys died in July 1995.

He told judges at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia on October 1, "It is the Serb people that stand accused," implying the trial was biased against Serbs.

The wartime Bosnian Serb leader accused prosecutors of building their case on "allusions, random chit-chat, [and] testimony by their own employees."

"I know the truth, the prosecution knows the truth, they are trying to delude the court," Karadzic added.

He said his indictment is based on the contention that he was a key member of a criminal plot to rid Serb-dominated areas of Bosnia of Muslims and Croats.

Without that theory, he said, "the only thing that would remain would be my good deeds toward my people and the other two peoples."


In a 874-page written brief summarizing his defense, Karadzic apologized to victims of the crimes and acknowledged he bore "moral responsibility for any crime" committed by Bosnian Serbs as their wartime leader.

UN prosecutors want Karadzic imprisoned for life if he is convicted.

Prosecutor Alan Tieger argued this week that "the policy of ethnic cleansing" had been fully exposed and had "Karadzic as its driving force."

The judges are expected to take months to reach verdicts.

Karadzic was handed over to the Hague-based tribunal when he was arrested in Belgrade in 2008 after 13 years on the run.

He is accused of orchestrating a campaign of ethnic cleansing together with former Bosnian Serb General Ratko Mladic, who is being tried separately.

Another key suspect, Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic, died in 2006 before the end of his trial.

The Bosnia war, which emerged from the breakup of the former Yugoslavia, killed more than 100,000 people and uprooted more than 2 million others.

Based on reporting by AP and Reuters

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