Genocide chief Snubs UN court

Radovan Karadzic refused to appear today at a UN court where he is being tried for genocide charges perpetrated during his time as president of Serbia. But as the case goes ahead later next month, questions will be asked as to whether the Hague based UN court has the powers to force prosecutions.

Presiding over the trial in courtroom number one of the Yugoslav war crimes tribunal in The Hague, the judge, O-Gon Kwon, of South Korea, sparked uproar in the gallery by adjourning the keenly awaited case after a brief 20-minute hearing.

Dozens of Bosnian Muslim victims and survivors of the Serbian mass murder at Srebrenica in 1995 howled and wailed as the judge adjourned the proceedings and pleaded with Karadzic to appear in court tomorrow afternoon.

Karadzic faces 11 charges of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity for allegedly orchestrating a systematic campaign of murder, terror and deportation in the 1992-95 war aimed at seizing half of Bosnia and ridding it of all non-Serbs.