Bosnian Serb jailed for war crimes

A Bosnian court has sentenced a former member of Bosnian Serb forces to five years in jail for war crimes against Croat and Muslim civilians during the country's 1992-95 conflict.

    Serb Prime MInister Marovic (L) prefers cooperation with tribunal

    The Sarajevo county court on Friday sentenced Milorad Rodic for crimes against the civilian population, forceful expulsion, and rape committed in the first two years of the Bosnian war, spokesman for the prosecution Oleg Cavka said.

      

    The crimes were committed in the Sarajevo suburb of Grbavica which was controlled by Bosnian Serb forces throughout the war.

      

    Rodic was given a reduced sentence after pleading guilty under an agreement with the prosecution.

     

    Bosnia's 1992-95 war claimed more than 200,000 lives, while more than two million people, over half the Balkan country's population, were forced to flee their homes.

     

    Warning

      

    Meanwhile, in Belgrade, the president of Serbia and Montenegro on Friday warned that failure to cooperate with the UN war crimes tribunal in The Hague would push the country into isolation and stagnation.

     

    "I'm an optimist and I think that Karadzic and Mladic are thinking about voluntary surrender"

    Carla del Ponte,
    chief war crimes prosecutor

    Pro-Western President Svetozar Marovic was speaking two days after a senior US official told Serbia it must hand over suspects such as top fugitive general Ratko Mladic and wanted Serbs if the impoverished Balkan republic is to build closer ties with the West.

       

    "We in Serbia and Montenegro are certain that any delay in fulfilling our commitments to The Hague is pushing us further away from Europe," Marovic told reporters.

       

    Foreign Minister Vuk Draskovic also advocates full cooperation.

     

    But Serbian Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica, a Hague critic, has said the generals should not be extradited and suggested they face trial in Serbia instead.

     

    Whereabouts

       

    Authorities say they don't know Mladic's whereabouts, rejecting allegations by chief UN war crimes prosecutor Carla del Ponte that he is hiding in Serbia.

       

    Mladic and his former political master Radovan Karadzic are wanted for genocide during Bosnia's 1992-95 war.

       

    Mladic's arrest and handover would be possible if there was political will in Belgrade, del Ponte was quoted as saying.

       

    "I'm an optimist and I think that Karadzic and Mladic are thinking about voluntary surrender," she also told state news agency Tanjug in an interview published on Friday.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Assassinating Kim Jong-un could go so wrong

    Assassinating Kim Jong-un could go so wrong

    The many ways in which the assassination of the North Korean leader could lead to a total disaster.

    Lebanon has a racism problem

    Lebanon has a racism problem

    The problem of racism in Lebanon goes beyond xenophobic attitudes towards Syrian and Palestinian refugees.

    The life and death of Salman Rushdie, gentleman author

    The life and death of Salman Rushdie, gentleman author

    The man we call 'Salman Rushdie' today is not the brilliant author of the Satanic Verses, but a Picassoesque imposter.