Victims of Bosnian Serb leader want maximum sentence for genocide

Victims of Radovan Karadzic's wartime policies on Thursday rallied in front of the UN International Criminal Tribunal for former Yugoslavia in The Hague, ahead of its ruling in the former Bosnian Serb leader's genocide case.

"We want the maximum sentence for Karadzic and the recognition of genocide," a spokeswoman for Muslim Bosniaks who were imprisoned by Serbs during the 1992-95 war told dpa in The Hague.

Several dozen people, including victims and victims' families, gathered for a vigil in front of the ICTY building hours before the reading of the verdict was due to begin at 2 pm (1300 GMT).

Karadzic, 70, is charged with being the person most responsible for crimes such as the genocide at the town of Srebrenica in 1995 and 44 months of shelling and sniping of Sarajevo during the 1992-95 Bosnian war.

Serb forces under Karadzic's command killed around 8,000 boys and men at Srebrenica in July 1995. More than 10,000 were killed in Sarajevo during the war.

After the war, Karadzic fled justice for 13 years before being arrested in Belgrade in July 2008. 

In the mammoth trial he defended himself from two counts of genocide and one count each of persecution, extermination, murder as a crime against humanity and as a war crime, deportation, inhumane acts, terror, unlawful attacks and taking hostages.

ICTY chief prosecutor Serge Brammertz described Karadzic's trial as the most important in the tribunal's 23-year history.

The United Nations established the court to try the most important war crimes committed during the violent disintegration of the former Yugoslavia between 1991 and 2001.

Last update: Thu, 24/03/2016 - 13:49

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