Five of the six accused in the Prlić and others case were yesterday granted temporary provisional release from the Tribunal's Detention Unit to be taken in the period up to the scheduled commencement of the defence case in the trial.
Jadranko Prlić, Bruno Stojić, Slobodan Praljak, Milivoj Petković, and Valentin Ćorić were granted release, due to come into force on 21 February and end 4 May 2008. All five are due to appear for hearings on 17 and 26 March 2008 and the pre-defence conference on 21 April 2008.
All of the accused will during their release reside in Croatia whose authorities will provide the necessary security measures and ensure their return to the Tribunal's custody.
The accused are former high-level leaders of the Bosnian Croat wartime entity Herceg-Bosna and are on trial for their alleged responsibility for war crimes committed in 1992 and 1993 against Bosnian Muslims and other non-Croats from areas in southwestern and central Bosnia and Herzegovina. The indictment focuses on alleged crimes committed in the municipalities of Prozor,
Gornji Vakuf, Jablanica, Mostar, Ljubuški, Stolac, Čapljina and Vareš.
The trial started on 26 April 2006, with the prosecution case closing on 6 February 2008. On 20 February 2008 the Trial Chamber dismissed the defence motions for acquittal filed by the defence of Čorić and Pušić in accordance with the rule 98bis. The Defence's case is set to commence on 5 May 2008.
The full text of the decisions can be found in French on the Tribunal's website at www.un.org/icty.
Courtroom proceedings can be followed on the Tribunal's website www.un.org/icty.