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Bosnia war crimes court enters not guilty plea for Bosnian Serb defendant on hunger strike

[JURIST] The War Crimes Chamber of the Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina [official website; JURIST news archive] entered a plea of not guilty for Bosnian Serb Milrod Trbic [ICTY case backgrounder, PDF] Thursday because Trbic failed to appear in court [press release] after starting a hunger strike on Monday. Trbic has been charged with genocide [press release; indictment, PDF] for allegedly "knowingly participated in the forcible transfer of the Bosniak population from the Srebrenica enclave, as well as in the summary executions and burial of able-bodied Bosniak men from Srebrenica." Trbic is also accused of shooting up to 20 Bosnian Muslims outside of a school.

The International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia transferred [press release] Trbic in June to the Bosnian court, which was established [JURIST report] in March 2005 to ease the backlog of the ICTY. The ICTY is currently trying to complete all its work by 2010. Approximately 8,000 Bosnian Muslims were killed in the 1995 Srebrenica massacre [BBC timeline; JURIST news archive]. Reuters has more.

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