[JURIST] French police on Friday arrested Radomir Susnjar [Bosnia Times backgrounder], a Bosnian Serb paramilitary soldier suspected of killing 59 Muslim civilians during the Bosnian Civil War [JURIST news archive]. Susnjar is suspected of involvement in the July 1992 killings in the town of Visegrad, where 59 civilians were locked in a building that was set on fire. Susnjar was arrested [AP report] in France at the request of Bosnian authorities and will soon face extradition to Bosnia to stand trial. The Prosecutor’s Office of Bosnia and Herzegovina [official website] stated [Balkan Insight report] that Susnjar’s arrest is a “clear message to all war crimes suspects that the Bosnian prosecutor’s office and police agencies will find and prosecute suspects wherever they hide.” The killings in Visegrad were among the first carried out by Serb forces in the war.
In January Ratko Mladic [JURIST news archive], former leader of the Bosnian Serb army during the Bosnian civil war, refused to testify [JURIST report] in the war crimes trial of fellow Bosnian Serb military leader Radovan Karadzic [BBC profile]. Earlier that month the appeals chamber for the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) [official website] upheld [JURIST report] the war crimes convictions of four Serbian military officials, but reduced the sentences for three of them. The Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) [official website] in December 2013 rejected [JURIST report] a request by prosecutors to re-arrest nine individuals convicted of war crimes.