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    Default 'Butcher of Bosnia' convicted of genocide, crimes against humani

    Ratko Mladic guilty:Ratko Mladic guilty: 'Butcher of Bosnia' convicted of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes

    Former Bosnian Serb general will appeal sentence of life imprisonment

    Ratko Mladic, the former Bosnian Serb military commander known as the “Butcher of Bosnia,” was found guilty of genocide Wednesday by a U.N. tribunal at The Hague and sentenced to life in prison. The court ruled that Mladic was partly responsible for some of the worst atrocities of the 1992–95 Bosnian war, including the killing of 8,000 Muslim men and boys at Srebrenica—Europe’s worst mass killing since World War II—and the deadly siege of Sarajevo during which more than 10,000 civilians were killed by shelling and sniper fire.

    Mladic and former Bosnian Serb President Radovan Karadzic, who was convicted last year, were the most high-profile criminals prosecuted by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. (Former Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic died in his cell in 2006 before he could be convicted.) Today’s conviction also marks the end of the road for the tribunal, which will close up shop at the end of this year, having sentenced 83 Balkan war criminals since it opened in 1993.

    The ICTY and its counterpart, the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, which shut down after 45 judgments in 2015, were born in an era of optimism that perpetrators of crimes against humanity could be held responsible for their actions by the international community on a regular basis. These days, that optimism is fading fast.

    Last month, the International Criminal Court—a separate U.N.-backed body from the ICTY and ICTR intended to be a more universal court—suffered a blow when Burundi became the first country to formally withdraw from it. The decision followed a U.N. report accusing the country’s government of crimes against humanity. South Africa, Kenya, and the Gambia—home country of chief prosecutor Fatou Bensouda—have also threatened to withdraw from the court, which is often accused of anti-African bias. All of the defendants tried by the court have been Africans, and nine of its 10 current formal investigations are on the continent. In its 15 years of operation, the court has convicted only four people.

    Meanwhile, its list of high-profile failures is growing. Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir was indicted by the court for crimes including genocide in 2009, but the international movement to bring him to justice has more or less collapsed. Saif al-Qaddafi, son of the former leader of Libya, has been charged with crimes against humanity by the court, but his whereabouts have been unknown since he was released by the militia group that was holding him last summer. The court dropped charges against Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta in 2015, after his government refused to cooperate with the prosecution. Kenyatta was just re-elected.

    The court’s rules make prosecutions tough to sustain. It can investigate cases only in its member states or in situations referred by the U.N. Security Council. Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is unlikely to ever see the inside of a Hague courtroom, since Syria is not a member of the ICC and he has the backing of Russia at the U.N. (In any case, it appears increasingly likely he’ll stay in power.) Current leaders of countries can follow Bashir’s and Kenyatta’s example by simply refusing to cooperate. There have been calls in recent days for the U.N. Security Council to refer Myanmar to the court over the mass killing of the Rohingya, but there’s nothing to compel the country’s military and political leaders to turn themselves over.

    In recent days, Bensouda requested authorization from the court to investigate the U.S. military and CIA for alleged war crimes in Afghanistan. The Taliban and Afghan armed forces were named as possible targets as well. The U.S. is not a member of the ICC, but Afghanistan is, so technically the court would have jurisdiction over crimes committed there, but it’s very unlikely that U.S. personnel will ever face trial. (Same for Israel, target of an ICC inquiry over alleged crimes in the Palestinian territories.)

    In the end, sitting governments can generally just refuse to cooperate with the court, and it’s enormously difficult to force them to do so. As a result, the only people who have to fear international convictions for war crimes are those, like Mladic, who lost the wars in which their crimes were committed.

    http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slate...rnational.html



    Meet the man who survived Europe's biggest massacre since World War Two

    https://www.facebook.com/bbcnews/vid...55639177085659

  2. #2
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    Christian War Criminal Terrorist International Tribunal Verdict

    His soldiers slaughtered 8,000 Bosnian Muslims. Now an international tribunal is about to hand down its verdict on Ratko Mladić.

    video: https://www.facebook.com/ajplusengli...8531941288312/

    Ratko Mladić convicted of war crimes and genocide at UN tribunal

    Former Bosnian Serb army commander sentenced to life imprisonment more than 20 years after Srebrenica massacre

    by Owen Bowcott and Julian Borger - 22 November 2017

    The former Bosnian Serb commander Ratko Mladić, nicknamed the ‘butcher of Bosnia’, has been sentenced to life imprisonment after being convicted of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity.

    More than 20 years after the Srebrenica massacre, Mladic was found guilty at the United Nations-backed international criminal tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in The Hague of 10 offences involving extermination, murder and persecution of civilian populations.

    As he entered the courtroom, Mladić gave a broad smile and thumbs up to the cameras – a gesture that infuriated relatives of the victims. His defiance shifted into detachment as the judgment began: Mladić played with his fingers and nodded occasionally, looking initially relaxed.

    The verdict was disrupted for more than half an hour when he asked the judges for a bathroom break. After he returned, defence lawyers requested that proceedings be halted or shortened because of his high blood pressure. The judges denied the request. Mladić then stood up shouting “this is all lies” and “I’ll **** your mother”. He was forcibly removed from the courtroom. The verdicts were read in his absence.

    Mladić, 74, was chief of staff of Bosnian Serb forces from 1992 until 1996, during the ferocious civil wars and ethnic cleansing that followed the break-up of the Yugoslav state.

    The one-time fugitive from international justice faced 11 charges, two of genocide, five of crimes against humanity and four of violations of the laws or customs of war. He was cleared of one count of genocide, but found guilty of all other charges. The separate counts related to “ethnic cleansing” operations in Bosnia, sniping and shelling attacks on besieged civilians in Sarajevo, the massacre of Muslim men and boys at Srebrenica and taking UN personnel hostage in an attempt to deter Nato airstrikes.

    The trial in The Hague, which took 530 days across more than four years, is arguably the most significant war crimes case in Europe since the Nuremberg trials, in part because of the scale of the atrocities involved. Almost 600 people gave evidence for the prosecution and defence, including survivors of the conflict.

    Delivering the verdicts, judge Alphons Orie said Mladić’s crimes “rank among the most heinous known to humankind and include genocide and extermination”.

    Orie dismissed mitigation pleas by the defence that Mladić was of “good character”, had diminished mental capacity and was in poor physical health.

    Relatives of victims flew into the Netherlands to attend the hearing, determined to see Mladić receive justice decades after the end of the war in which more than 100,000 people were killed.

    Among those present was Fikret Alić, the Bosnian who was photographed as an emaciated prisoner behind the wire of a prison camp in 1992. “Justice has won and the war criminal has been convicted,” he said after the verdict. Others were reduced to tears by the judge’s description of past atrocities.

    Mladić was one of the world’s most wanted fugitives before his arrest in 2011 in northern Serbia. He was transferred to the ICTY in the Netherlands, where he refused to enter a plea. A not guilty plea was eventually entered on his behalf. Through much of the trial in The Hague, he was a disruptive presence in court, heckling judges and on one occasion making a cut-throat gesture towards the mother of one of the 8,000 victims of the 1995 Srebrenica massacre.

    Mladić was acquitted of only one charge, that of genocide in Bosnian municipalities outside Srebrenica. The chamber ruled that although he was part of a joint criminal enterprise to carry out mass killings there, which represented crimes against humanity, they did not rise to the level of genocide because the victims did not represent a substantial proportion of the Bosnian Muslim population of those municipalities.

    The Bosnian Serb political leader, Radovan Karadžić, was also found not guilty of genocide in the municipalities. That tribunal verdict in 2016 triggered protests from Bosniaks, who wanted the court to acknowledge that genocide was committed across Bosnia, not just in Srebrenica.

    In evaluating Mladić’s culpability for genocide, the court pointed to his command and control of the Bosnian Serb army and interior ministry forces, which carried out almost all of the executions, his presence in the area, and his frequent remarks about how the country’s Muslims could “disappear”.

    Orie said: “The chamber found that the only reasonable inference was that the accused intended to destroy the Bosnian Muslim of Srebrenica as a substantial part of the protected group of Muslims in Bosnia Herzegovina.

    “Accordingly, the chamber found the accused intended to carry out the Srebrenica joint criminal enterprises through the commission of the crime of genocide and was a member of the Srebrenica joint criminal enterprise.”

    Once Mladic has exhausted any appeals, he could, theoretically, be sent to the UK to serve out the rest of his life behind bars. Britain is one of the countries that has signed up to the tribunal’s agreement on the enforcement of sentences.

    The UK has hosted other Serbian convicts sent on from the ICTY. In 2010, Radislav Krstić who was convicted at the Hague in 2001 for his part in the Srebrenica massacre, had his throat slashed in his cell at Wakefield prison by three Muslim inmates intent on revenge.

    The former Liberian warlord Charles Taylor is also serving out his 50 year prison term in a UK jail.
    Mladic will remain in the UN detention centre at Scheveningen, near the Hague, in the meantime. Any appeal will be dealt with by the successor court, the UN Mechanism for International Criminal Tribunals.

    The hearing, broadcast live, was followed closely in Bosnia. The Bosnian prime minister, Denis Zvizdić, said the verdict “confirmed that war criminals cannot escape justice regardless of how long they hide”.

    In Lazarevo, the Serbian village where Mladić was arrested in 2011, residents dismissed the guilty verdicts as biased. One, Igor Topolic, said: “All this is a farce for me. He [Mladić] is a Serbian national hero.”

    Mladić’s home village of Bozinovici retains a street named after the former general, where he is praised as a symbol of defiance and national pride.

    The trial is one of the last to be heard by the ICTY, which is to be dissolved at the end of the year.

    After the ruling, Serge Brammertz, the ICTY’s chief prosecutor, said it was not a verdict against all Serb people. “Mladić’s guilt is his and his alone,” he said.

    Mladić’s defence lawyer, Dragan Ivetic, announced that he would appeal against the convictions.

    In Geneva, the UN’s high commissioner for human rights, Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein, described Mladić as the “epitome of evil” and said his conviction was a “momentous victory for justice”.
    https://www.theguardian.com/world/20...at-un-tribunal


 

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