ICTY upholds war crimes convictions over Bosnia massacre

- Court reveals final decision on five Bosnian Serb officers linked to 1995 genocide at Srebrenica.

SARAJEVO, Bosnia and Herzegovina (AA) – A court investigating atrocities committed during the 1992-1995 Bosnian war has upheld war crimes convictions against five Bosnian Serb army officers.

The Appeals Chamber of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia imposed its final decision on the men on Friday; all are former army officers from Republika Srpska, the ethnic-Serb sector of Bosnia.

The men have been convicted of committing genocide and other war crimes in Srebrenica and Zepa in July 1995 during the three-year Bosnian conflict.

According to today’s rulings, Vujadin Popovic and Ljubisa Beara were sentenced to life while Drago Nikolic was sentenced to 35 years in prison.

Radivoje Miletic was sentenced to 18 years and Vinko Pandurevic was sentenced to 13 years in prison, according to Presiding Judge Patrick Robinson.

The ICTY had convicted the five Serb officers in 2010 but the men had appealed the verdicts.

Miletic’s penalty was reduced from 19 years to 18 years by today’s decision.

Time served in prison so far will be counted as part of their sentence. As Nikolic, Miletic and Pandurevic were transferred to the ICTY in 2005 they have already spent 10 years of their prison time.

The Bosnian Serb army attacked the UN “safe area” of Srebrenica in July 1995. Around 8,000 Bosnian Muslim men and boys were eventually killed, despite the presence of Dutch troops tasked with acting as UN peacekeepers.

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