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Australian War-crimes Trial Will Not Hear Testimony Abroad

The prosecution of Australia’s first war-crimes trial suffered a setback this week, when Magistrate Peter Kelly ruled that the court may not hear evidence abroad because the defendant, 74-year-old Ivan Polyukhovich, is too ill to travel.

The Department of Public Prosecutions agreed not to oppose the ruling in order to prevent further delays.

But the prosecution admitted that its case has been weakened.

The court, based in Adelaide, South Australia, had planned to sit in the Ukraine, Israel and the United States in order to hear testimony from witnesses of Polyukhovich’s alleged crimes.

Although some witnesses may travel to Australia, others are too old and too weak to make the journey.