Ex-Bosnia Serb soldier sentenced to 20 years for war crimes

SARAJEVO, Bosnia-Herzegovina (AP) — A court in Bosnia on Monday convicted a former Bosnian Serb policeman and soldier of war crimes during the 1992-95 conflict and sentenced him to 20 years in prison.

The Court of Bosnia-Herzegovina found Rade Garic guilty of atrocities in the eastern town of Vlasenica in 1992 and later in Srebrenica in 1995.

Garic’s conviction relates to his involvement in the systematic persecution of Bosniak civilians, who are mostly Muslim, during the ethnic carnage in the Balkan nation that killed over 100,000 people and left millions displaced.

Bosnian Serb forces seized control of large swaths of Bosnia during the conflict, forcing non-Serbs from their homes and killing scores.

In Srebrenica in 1995, Bosnian Serb soldiers and police executed more than 8,000 men and boys and dumped their bodies in mass graves, in what is recognized as Europe’s only post-World War II genocide.

In Vlasenica, Bosniak civilians were persecuted “by way of murders, imprisonment or other sever deprivation of liberty in violation of fundamental rules of international law, enforced disappearance of persons and other inhumane acts,” said the verdict against Garic.

Local media said Garic remains in detention. It was not immediately clear whether he will appeal the verdict.

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