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“Butcher of Bosnia” Found Guilty of Genocide
International

“Butcher of Bosnia” Found Guilty of Genocide

UN judges Wednesday sentenced former Bosnian Serbian commander Ratko Mladic to life imprisonment after finding him guilty of genocide and war crimes in the brutal Balkans conflicts over two decades ago.
The trial of the man dubbed “The Butcher of Bosnia” was the last before the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) and comes as the court prepares to close its doors next month, AFP reported.
The court found him guilty on 10 counts including genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity committed during the 1992-1995 war that killed 100,000 people and displaced 2.2 million as ethnic rivalries tore apart Yugoslavia. But they found him not guilty of genocide in the municipalities.
“For having committed these crimes, the chamber sentences Mr Ratko Mladic to life imprisonment,” presiding judge Alphons Orie said, adding the crimes were “amongst the most heinous known to human kind”.
After rumors he would not attend the hearing, the former general, 74, who once cut a swathe of fear against Bosnia, gave a thumbs-up as he entered the courtroom in The Hague.
But in extraordinary scenes he was ordered to be dragged from the court, when in an outburst he accused the judges of lying, after they refused to adjourn because he had high-blood pressure.
“The circumstances were brutal. Those who tried to defend their homes were met with ruthless force. Mass executions occurred and some victims succumbed after being beaten,” Orie said, outlining the facts of the case against Mladic.
“Many of the perpetrators who had captured Bosnian Muslims showed little or no respect for human life, or dignity.”
Wednesday’s verdict has been long awaited by tens of thousands of victims across the bitterly-divided region, and dozens gathered early outside the courtroom in The Hague, many clutching photos of loved ones who died or are among the 7,000 still missing.
Prosecutors said Mladic and his political counterpart Radovan Karadzic sought through ethnic cleansing to “permanently remove” Bosnian Muslims and Bosnian Croats from areas claimed by Bosnian Serbs.

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