War crimes convict dies after drinking liquid in courtroom

Slobodan Praljak enters the Yugoslav War Crimes Tribunal in The Hague, Netherlands, Wednesday, Nov. 29, 2017, to hear the verdict in the appeals case. (Robin van Lonkhuijsen,Pool Photo via AP)

A spokesman for a United Nations' war crimes court has confirmed that a former Bosnian Croat general died in a Dutch hospital shortly after drinking a liquid in a courtroom where judges had just confirmed his 20-year sentence.

Nenad Golcevski told reporters at the U.N. International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia that 72-year-old Slobodan Praljak died Wednesday despite efforts to save him.

Golcevski said: "Mr. Praljak drank a liquid while in court and quickly fell ill. The ICTY medical staff immediately assisted Mr. Praljak. Simultaneously an ambulance was summoned. Mr. Praljak was transported to a nearby hospital to receive further medical assistance, where he passed."

Praljak yelled in court that he had taken poison. The tribunal did not elaborate on the nature of the liquid he drank.

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(Copyright ©2018 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)