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Bahamian Judge Presides In War Crimes Trial

Mico Stanisic and Stojan Zupljanin

Former Bahamas Chief Justice Sir Burton Hall has sentenced two former Bosnian senior officials to 22 years in prison for their role in the 1992-95 Bosnian war.

According to the Associated Press, Sir Burton – now a judge at the Yugoslav war crimes tribunal in The Hague, Netherlands – convicted Mico Stanisic and Stojan Zupljanin on Wednesday of key roles in a campaign of murder, torture and persecution against Muslims and Croats.

Stanisic was the interior minister in the breakaway Bosnian Serb republic set up during the war and Stojan Zupljanin was in charge of the police.

“Prosecutors had sought life sentences for both men after charging them with involvement in a criminal conspiracy led by Bosnian Serb President Radovan Karadzic and his military chief, Gen Ratko Mladic, to force Muslims and Croats out of what they considered to be Serb territory in Bosnia,” the AP report said.

Sir Burton Hall ruled that the men were both in a position to prevent or punish crimes and neither did as Serb police and paramilitaries went on a rampage in early 1992, killing and mistreating non-Serbs as they tried to carve out a “Greater Serbia” during the disintegration of Yugoslavia.

The two men “both intended and significantly contributed to the plan to remove Bosnian Muslims and Bosnian Croats from the territory of the planned Serbian state,” Sir Burton said.

The AP said Zupljanin stood and crossed himself as Sir Burton said he was guilty of persecution, extermination, murder and torture.

Caption: Former Bosnian Serb minister of internal affairs and national police chief Mico Stanisic, Right, and former Bosnian Serb senior security official and police chief Stojan Zupljanin, Left.

Posted in World News

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