UN Court: Mladic 'Significantly Contributed' to Srebrenica Massacre

After Mladic verdict Bosnia has yet to turn page

After Mladic verdict Bosnia has yet to turn page

A United Nations court has convicted former Bosnian Serb military chief Gen. Ratko Mladic of genocide and crimes against humanity and sentenced him to life in prison for atrocities perpetrated during Bosnia's 1992-1995 war.

Judges for the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) sitting in The Hague unanimously found Mladic guilty of culpability in the Srebrenica murders which took place towards the end of the country's brutal three-year civil war.

Judge Alphons Orie held that the perpetrators of crimes committed in Srebrenica meant to destroy the Muslims living there, adding that Mladic carried out and personally oversaw a deadly campaign of sniping and shelling in Sarajevo.

Mladic was convicted of the massacre of more than 7,000 Bosnian Muslims in 1995, as well as the siege of Sarajevo where at least 10,000 people were killed, in a series of 11 charges.

Judges also said Mladic was a member of a "joint criminal enterprise" intending to purge non-Serbs in Bosnia and was "instrumental' in war crimes in Sarajevo and "personally" directed shelling of the city". The requests were rejected by the judges in May. "Numerous perpetrators who had captured Bosnian Muslims, showed little or no respect for human life or dignity", Orie said.

Mladic was also found guilty of taking hostage more than 200 North Atlantic Treaty Organisation military personnel and keeping them as human shields to prevent North Atlantic Treaty Organisation air strikes against the Bosnian Serb army.

Mladic's son Darko Mladic accused the judges of obstructing his father's legal team in presenting evidence exculpating his father.

For victims of the atrocities committed by the Bosnian Serb army however, it was time for Mladic to face justice.

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. Munira Subasic, president of the Mothers of Srebrenica, told AFP before the verdict.

Mladic was arrested in 2011, prior to which he was one of the world's most wanted fugitives.

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