BELGRADE – Former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic is asking to be released from prison pending his appeal on his conviction for genocide and other atrocities, saying his continued detention is ruining his health. He was sentenced to 40 years in prison.

While addressing a special hearing at the ICTY on Wednesday in the Hague, Karadzic again proclaimed his innocence, slamming the verdict as “monstrous.”

He also complained about his detention conditions and asked for a new laptop to help him prepare his case.

Judge Theodor Meron denied his request to be released, but said he would order officials to look into conditions at the detention facility.

“My proposal is that my stay in the detention center should be suspended and that I should be released pending the finalization of the legal procedure to uphold or refute this verdict, which would not pass among first year students of law,” Karadzic said.