A lawyer for Gen. Ratko Mladic said Monday it is not certain the former Bosnian Serb military commander will show up in a United Nations courtroom when judges deliver their verdicts in his long-running trial for allegedly masterminding atrocities during Bosnia’s 1992-95 war.
Mladic’s attorneys have filed a flurry of recent motions to have the ailing 75-year-old’s health assessed before the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia announces it decisions Wednesday.
He was tried on 11 counts of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes.
Defense attorney Dragan Ivetic said lawyers for the former military leader were not attempting to stall the case and have been trying for weeks to have Mladic’s health checked, fearing a court appearance might kill him.
“We’ve had a medical doctor that has said, actually based on his diagnosed condition, any form of stress, including a trial proceeding, may increase his chance of having a stroke, a heart attack or dying,” Ivetic told The Associated Press.
Judges at the court have so far rejected the lawyers’ requests for doctors to visit Mladic, who survived two strokes and a heart attack before he was arrested and imprisoned in 2011.