[JURIST] Serbian police on Wednesday arrested eight men suspected of having a direct role in the killing of more than 1,000 Muslim men and boys during the 1995 Srebrenica massacre [JURIST news archive; BBC backgrounder]. In July 1995 more than 8,000 Bosnian Muslim men and boys were executed in Srebrenica and the surrounding area over a period of several days, despite the area being declared [NPR report] a “safe haven” by the UN. According to the Associated Press (AP), among those arrested was Nedeljko Milidragovic [AP report], a Serbian commander during the Bosnian Civil War dubbed “Nedjo the Butcher.” The group of men accused are the first to be arrested by Serbia for directly carrying out the Srebrenica massacre.
The Srebrenica massacre has led to the arrest and prosecution of numerous war criminals including former Bosnian Serb general Ratko Mladic [BBC backgrounder; JURIST news archive]. At the end of January the Appeals Chamber of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) [official website] upheld genocide convictions [JURIST report] for Vujadin Popovic and Ljubisa Beara for crimes perpetrated by Bosnian Serb forces during the 1995 massacre. Also in January the war crimes division of the Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina [official website] confirmed the indictment [JURIST report] of Dragomir Vasic on charges of genocide. In October the Netherlands Ministry of Defense [official website] announced plans [JURIST report] to appeal a ruling finding Netherlands liable for the deaths of 300 of the men and boys killed in the Srebrenica massacre.