Ratko Mladic’s defense objected to the admission of the prosecution’s collection of maps that present the events in the Srebrenica area after the Serb forces overran the UN protected enclave. Yesterday, in closed session, Mladic was once again removed from court after he made loud comments about the witness’s testimony. At the end of the hearing, Mladic asked to address the Trial Chamber about a ‘personal issue’, but was not allowed to speak to the judges

Ratko Mladic in the courtroomRatko Mladic in the courtroom

A protected prosecution witness testifying under the pseudonym RM 294 completed his evidence in closed session today. As the hearing drew to a close, the accused Mladic was brought back into the courtroom. Yesterday, Mladic was removed when he made loud comments about the witness’s evidence. In the presence of the accused, his defense counsel continued the cross-examination of OTP investigator Erin Gallagher. Her examination-in-chief was completed on 1 March 2013.

Through Gallagher’s testimony, the prosecution tendered into evidence a collection of maps that should help the Trial Chamber to find its bearings in an area of about 2,800 square kilometers in which the investigation into the crimes after the fall of Srebrenica in July 1995 unfolded.

In the examination-in-chief, the defense objected to the admission of those maps, primarily because of the marks that designate the locations of mass executions and the route of the column of soldiers and civilians as it moved through the woods towards the BH Army-controlled territory after Srebrenica fell. After the cross-examination of the OTP investigator, the defense still objected. The judges will now have to rule on the admissibility of the Srebrenica map collection.

In the very end of the hearing, Mladic’s defense counsel Branko Lukic said that the accused wanted to address the Trial Chamber about ‘personal issues’. The accused already raised them in a letter to the UN Detention Unit. The presiding judge asked the defense lawyer to be more specific as to the topic the accused wanted to address. As the defense counsel didn’t know, the judges ordered him to read Mladic’s letter to the Detention Unit administration and see what ‘personal issues’ Mladic was talking about. If necessary, the defense could then address the Trial Chamber, the judges decided.

Ratko Mladic’s trial for genocide and other crimes in BH continues tomorrow with the evidence of Dutch soldiers who served in UNPROFOR in Srebrenica in 1995.