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Bosnia police arrest 8 suspected war criminals

The Prosecutor's Office of Bosnia and Herzegovina [official website] announced [press release] on Thursday that police have arrested eight men suspected of committing war crimes during the Bosnian Civil War [JURIST news archive]. The eight Serb men were arrested [AP report] in Rogatica, the city in which the suspects are accused of taking part in looting, expulsions and killing of civilians in September 1992. The men are charged with the commission of the criminal offense of Crimes against Humanity of Article 172 of BiH's Criminal Code. The suspects—Radomir Markovic, Mile Kusic, Dragan Bozovic, Sasa Perkovic, Radomir Gluhovic, Pero Radovic, Ilija Vukasinovic, and Milos Vukasinovic—had been under investigation due to their suspected participation in widespread and systematic attacks directed against Bosniak population in the territory of Rogatica Municipality. Kusic is suspected of killing 20 civilians, including women and children. The bodies of some of the victims have yet to be found. The prosecutor will decide whether to file a motion for custody after the questioning of the suspects is complete.

The International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) and the BiH war crimes court [official websites] have continued to prosecute those accused of atrocities during the Balkans conflict of the early 1990s. Earlier this month, the BiH court reopened [JURIST report] criminal proceedings [press release] for a man convicted of war crimes in 2006, after the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) [official website] ruled that his rights were violated following his conviction of war crimes for atrocities against Croat civilians in 1993. On July 29, 2008, the Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina sentenced [JURIST report] its first war crimes suspects from Yugoslavia's violent ethnic conflicts of the 1990s, convicting seven of genocide for their involvement in killings committed at the Srebrenica prison camp. The war crimes Court of BiH was established [JURIST report] in 2005 to relieve the caseload of the ICTY and is organized under Bosnian law. Unlike the ICTY, the Court of BiH does not have a time limit. The courts, including the ICTY, continue to pursue cases related to the Bosnian Civil War.

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