SARAJEVO, Bosnia-Herzegovina – The wartime commander of the Bosnian Army said Tuesday he would surrender next week to the United Nations (search) war crimes tribunal for the former Yugoslavia.
Retired Gen. Rasim Delic (search), who led the Muslim-dominated Bosnian Army during the 1992-95 war, appeared on Bosnian TV Tuesday evening and said he made this decision immediately after Bosnian authorities informed him that the tribunal had indicted him for alleged war-crimes. He said he would travel Monday to the Netherlands, where the tribunal is being held.
Delic also said that according to the indictment, he is accused of command responsibility for crimes against Bosnian Serbs, allegedly committed by a unit of foreign Muslim mujahedeen troops.
The war in Bosnia, like the earlier war in Croatia, began after the country declared independence from Yugoslavia and the country's Serb minority rebelled. The Bosnian Serbs fought with the backing of the Serb-dominated federal Yugoslav army, hoping to remain part of a larger Serb-dominated Yugoslavia or Serbian state.
In 1993, Delic replaced the first Bosnian Army commander, Sefer Halilovic (search), who is already on trial in The Hague.
The tribunal was set up to prosecute high-ranking suspects of war crimes committed by all sides during the breakup of Yugoslavia in the 1990s, although most suspects have been ethnic Serbs and a handful of Croats.
Delic and Halilovic are the highest-ranking Bosnian Muslims to go on trial.