The Latest: War crimes court to review ex-general’s death


THE HAGUE, Netherlands — The Latest on the dramatic death of a Croat ex-general (all times local):

12 p.m.

The U.N.’s Yugoslav war crimes tribunal is launching an independent review into the court’s “internal operations” around the dramatic death of a Croat ex-general who swallowed what he said was poison in the tribunal’s courtroom and later died.

In a statement Friday, the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia said its review will complement an ongoing Dutch investigation into the death of Slobodan Praljak.

Praljak drank from a small bottle seconds after an appeals judge at the tribunal had confirmed much of the 72-year-old former Bosnian Croat military commander’s conviction and his 20-year sentence for crimes during the 1992-95 Bosnian war.

The tribunal review will begin next week by Hassan Jallow, a former prosecutor with the U.N.’s Rwanda war crimes tribunal.

The court says Jallow “is mandated to undertake an assessment of relevant existing procedures as well as make any recommendations which may assist other courts in the future.”

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11:35 a.m.

Croatia’s justice minister says the country will seek answers from the U.N.’s Yugoslav war crimes tribunal about this week’s dramatic death of a Croat ex-general, who died after drinking from a small bottle he said contained poison in the courtroom.

Drazen Bosnjakovic says Croatia will ask authorities in The Netherlands to be included in the ongoing investigation into the death Wednesday of Slobodan Praljak.

Bosnjakovic told Croatia’s state TV late Thursday that “much remains unclear, including how the poison was taken in, why security didn’t react in time and why medical help arrived so late.” He adds Croatia wants “all facts cleared about this tragic event.”

The International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia confirmed Praljak’s conviction and 20-year sentence for war crimes during the 1992-95 conflict in Bosnia.

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