Croatian Serb rebel Hadzic in Belgrade on release for cancer treatment

Belgrade (AFP) - Former Croatian Serb rebel leader Goran Hadzic, who has been diagnosed with brain cancer, arrived in Belgrade late Wednesday after the Yugoslav war crimes court ordered his provisional release, local media reported.

The plane from Amsterdam landed shortly after 11:00 pm (2100 GMT), the Beta news agency said.

Hadzic, currently unable to attend his trial at The Hague, will be transferred to his home in Novi Sad, 70 kilometres (40 miles) north of the Serbian capital.

He will return to the detention centre of the UN's International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in early May, just before his next scheduled CT scan.

Hadzic, 56, is the ICTY's final suspect, wanted on 14 war crimes and crimes against humanity charges for his role in the 1991-95 war in Croatia, including the murder of civilians taken from Vukuvar hospital in 1991 in one of the conflict's darkest episodes.

He will remain in Novi Sad for the duration of his provisional release, where he will undergo treatment at a specialist facility.

Hadzic wanted to be released on bail in order to be with his family during his treatment.

His trial has been suspended since October 2014 as he is not able to take part because of the side effects of his treatment, which includes chemotherapy.

Hadzic was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer in November, with doctors saying he has between one and two years to live.

The prosecution wants the trial to proceed in his absence but no decision has been made so far.

The one-time leader of the self-proclaimed Republic of Serbian Krajina during the early 1990s, Hadzic is the last of 161 suspects charged by the ICTY.