[JURIST] Brazilian authorities on Saturday arrested a man charged with committing war crimes in 1992 against the civilian population of former Yugoslavia. The search for wanted criminal Nikola Ceranic began [Reuters report] in late June after Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) authorities forwarded an extradition request to the Brazilian Justice Ministry and Supreme Court [official websites, in Portuguese]. Brazilian prosecutors and police cooperated with Bosnia to locate Ceranic near Sao Paulo. The authorities have yet to specify the details of Ceranic’s crimes or how long he resided in Brazil. The Supreme Court must now decide on BiH’s extradition request as required by Brazilian law.
War crimes against civilians continue to be a matter of international concern. On Friday Human Rights Watch (HRW) [advocacy website] reported that Russia and Syria were using cluster bombs to target [JURIST report] civilians and rebels in northern Syria despite their devastating and unpredictable nature. Earlier this month the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) [official website] reported that civilian casualties in the country reached a record high [JURIST report] in the first half of 2016, with 5,166 civilians recorded killed or maimed. Also this month UN rights official Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein stressed [JURIST report] that 200,000 civilians in three Syrian towns were trapped in the middle of the conflict between Syrian forces and ISIL.