Bosnian Serb ex-leader Plavsic returns to Belgrade after release

13:06, October 28, 2009      

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Bosnian Serb ex-leader Biljana Plavsic returned to Serbia Tuesday after serving two-thirds of an 11-year jail term in Sweden for war crimes.

Plavsic landed shortly after 2 p.m. local time (1300 GMT) at Belgrade airport and left for her home in Belgrade immediately, accompanied by Bosnian Serb Prime Minister Milorad Dodik.

Plavsic's brother Zdravko Plavisic said that she will reside in Belgrade since she has Serbian citizenship, according to Belgrade radio B92. And Plavsic's sister-in-law Vasilija Plavsic told B92 radio earlier on Tuesday that the former Bosnian Serb president, also known as the "Iron Lady" for her ruthless leadership, would not return to politics upon release.

"I do not believe she would return to the political scene. She wants to spend her late years in peace and quietness," Vasilija said.

The International Criminal Tribunal for Former Yugoslavia (ICTY)in The Hague sentenced Plavsic to 11 years behind bars for war crimes in February 2003 but granted an early release last month.

The early release decision of ICTY was criticized by Bosnian Muslim relatives of victims of the 1992-1995 war, but celebrated by Bosnian Serbs.

Plavsic, 79, became Bosnian Serb president in 1996 with the back of the West, succeeding Radovan Karadzic, who boycotted the trial on him in The Hague Monday. She was the only woman convicted in The Hague of war crimes during the 1992-1995 Bosnian war.

Source: Xinhua

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