The Two-Way
6:55 am
Fri June 3, 2011

Mladic Rejects 'Obnoxious Charges,' Refuses To Enter Plea

"Former Bosnian Serb military chief Gen. Ratko Mladic told a United Nations war crimes court Friday he is 'a gravely ill man' and refused to enter pleas to 'obnoxious charges' alleging he orchestrated the worst atrocities of a war that claimed 100,000 lives," The Associated Press reports from The Hague.

The BBC adds that Mladic "told the court he had been 'defending my people and my country.' "

The Guardian is live-blogging the court proceeding. Peter Beaumont, foreign affairs editor at the Observer, writes there that:

"The experience of being in court has very quickly brought the old General Mladic to the fore: arrogant, defiant, insisting as he has just done that he is in court to defend his people and his country and not himself, which has brought a rebuke from the judge that he is charged as an 'individual.' "

The AP adds a short video of Mladic's court appearance.

After 16 years as a fugitive, Mladic was arrested last week in Serbia. The indictment against him spells out a long list of alleged attrocities:

Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.