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Butcher Of Bosnia' Mladic war crimes trial opens

Butcher Of Bosnia' Mladic war crimes trial opens Former Bosnian Serb army chief General Ratko Mladic Former Bosnian Serb army chief Ge...

Butcher Of Bosnia' Mladic war crimes trial opens

Former Bosnian Serb army chief General Ratko Mladic

Former Bosnian Serb army chief General Ratko Mladic is due to go on trial charged with masterminding some of the worst atrocities in Europe since the Second World War.
The International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia at The Hague will see the military commander during the 1992-95 Bosnian war accused of genocide, murder, acts of terror and other crimes against humanity.
Mladic, 70, was in charge of the Bosnian Serb army when, over two nights in July 1995, its fighters shot 8,000 Muslim men and boys in and around the town of Srebrenica in eastern Bosnia, burying most in mass graves.
It was Europe's worst mass killing since the Holocaust and part of a war that left around 100,000 people dead.
The court's Belgian chief prosecutor, Serge Brammertz, said: "I don't have to tell you how important it is that finally this trial can start 17 years after the first indictment was issued (against Mladic)."
For years after the war Mladic was an elusive fugitive and one of the world's most-wanted men.
His time on the run finally ended last year when Serbian forces arrested him near Belgrade and flew him to The Hague.
He has been waiting for his trial in the same jail as his former political leader, Radovan Karadzic, who was arrested in 2008 and is now at the midway point of his own trial on almost identical charges to Mladic.
Mr Brammertz said: "We would of course have preferred having both before the same judges, one being the political architect of the crimes allegedly committed, the other the military leader of this policy."
Both men are accused of overseeing atrocities that began with a brutal campaign of ethnic cleansing in 1992 and climaxed with the July 1995 Srebrenica massacre.
They also are charged with the deadly campaign of sniping and shelling during the 44-month siege of the capital, Sarajevo.
The man seen as the overall architect of the Balkan wars of the 1990s, former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic, died in 2006 before tribunal judges could deliver verdicts in his trial.
Kadefa Mujic, 42, from Srebrenica, is a representative of the group ' Mothers of Srebrenica ', who met Mr Brammertz at The Hague on Tuesday.
"Victims are afraid that Mladic could die, and that would be very disappointing for the victims in Bosnia," he said.
"I want a verdict for Mladic so that the whole world will see that he is a war criminal and has committed the crimes in Bosnia."
Mladic has pleaded not guilty to the charges - calling them "obnoxious" and "monstrous" - and claims he was only defending his country and his people.



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AboutMicro News: Butcher Of Bosnia' Mladic war crimes trial opens
Butcher Of Bosnia' Mladic war crimes trial opens
AboutMicro News
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