UN war crimes judge orders medical for Ratko Mladic

Ratko Mladic in court in July
Image caption Gen Mladic has frequently complained of ill health since his arrest

Judges at the UN war crimes tribunal in The Hague have ordered a full medical examination for the former Bosnian Serb army chief Ratko Mladic.

Gen Mladic, 69, told judges he was too ill to attend a hearing last week.

He was admitted to hospital last month after his lawyer said he was suffering from pneumonia.

Gen Mladic is charged with war crimes in Bosnia in the 1990s, including ordering the massacre of 7,500 Muslim men and boys at Srebrenica in 1995.

The court issued a statement saying that the examination has been ordered "to better assess whether and to what extent his health condition could affect the preparation of the upcoming trial".

Gen Mladic has complained of health problems throughout the trial process.

A medical expert is to be appointed to carry out the examination and report back to the court by 6 December.

Independently of the court, Gen Mladic is to be visited this week by a team of Serbian doctors whom he has chosen, the AP news agency reports.

In his first appearance in front of the court in June, Gen Mladic called the charges against him "monstrous" and "obnoxious".

At his second hearing in July, he had to be removed from the courtroom after arguing with Judge Alfons Orie.

After 16 years in hiding, Gen Mladic was arrested in May by Serbian intelligence officers in a village north of Belgrade.

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