Bosnian ex-leader accused of war crime in extradition case

5th July 2010, Comments 0 comments

The extradition hearing of former Bosnian president Ejup Ganic got underway in London on Monday, with lawyers acting for Serbia stating he was guilty of a "clear war crime" and must face justice.

Prosecutor James Lewis detailed Serbia's claims that in 1992, Ganic helped mastermind attacks on a Yuglosav army officers' club, then on ambulances sent to the scene and later on an army convoy.

"We say on the face of it that is a clear war crime. It is an attack on ambulances and it is an attack on people who have surrendered," Lewis told the hearing at City of Westminster Magistrates' Court.

Ganic, 64, was arrested at London's Heathrow airport on March 1 on an extradition warrant from Serbia for alleged war crimes during the 1990s Balkans conflict.

He was subsequently released on bail and is fighting the warrant.

Belgrade believes he is implicated in the killing of 18 soldiers and officers in the military convoy attack in May 1992, when Ganic was a member of the Bosnian presidency.

Ganic, who claims the allegations are politically motivated, was present in the public gallery at the court, along with his son Emir and daughter Emina.

Emina told AFP: "We have seen the evidence and we are confident."

A small group of protesters gathered outside the hearing, which is expected to take approximately seven days, holding up banners saying: "Ganic -- blood on his hands" and "Bosnian president war criminal".

© 2010 AFP

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