Bildt to Meet Karadzic's Lawyer

The lawyer representing the indicted Bosnian war crimes suspect Radovan Karadzic said on Tuesday he will meet Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt, writes the news agency AFP. According to the lawyer, the meeting was proposed by Bildt for the 22nd of July in Brussels, after he had told the lawyer there was no time to meet in Stockholm.

Bildt used to be EU's mediator towards the end of the conflict in Bosnia-Hercegovina and Karadzic's lawyer told AFP he wants to ask Bildt about "the Holbrooke agreement". This is an agreement rumoured to have been made between Karadzic and top US diplomat Richard Holbrooke, who was the US peace negotiator in Bosnia.

Karadzic, leader of the Bosnian Serbs during the wars in Balkans, claims that he agreed in 1996 to step down from public life in return for immunity from prosecution. Both Holbrooke and Bildt have denied such a deal was made. The War Crimes Tribunal in the Hague ruled in December that the alleged immunity deal, if it existed, would be invalid and could not stop the trial. Karadzic faces 11 charges, among others for the 44-month siege of Sarajevo that leaft 10,000 people dead, and the massacre of around 8,000 men and boys in Srebrenica in 1995, AFP reports.