Former Croatian Official On Trial For War Crimes


A former senior Croatian official has pleaded not guilty to charges that he ordered the abduction, torture and killing of Serb civilians during the 1991-95 war.

Tomislav Mercep is also charged with failing to prevent such crimes while being aware of them as a senior official.

Prosecutors say Mercep personally organised and ordered the illegal imprisonment of some 52 Serb civilians, most of whom were later killed, including a family with a 12-year-old daughter.

Croatia is making efforts to meet requirements to deal with its wartime past as it prepares to join the European Union in 2013.

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