Former Bosnian Serb leader to hear verdicts on 11 charges, including over the 1995 Srebrenica massacre.by Al Jazeera
UN judges are set to pronounce their verdict in the genocide trial of former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic over the 1995 Srebrenica massacre, Europe’s worst atrocity since World War II.
Karadzic is the highest-ranking person to face reckoning before the UN tribunal in The Hague over a war two decades ago in which 100,000 people were killed as rival armies carved up Bosnia along ethnic lines.
He will hear verdicts on Thursday afternoon on 11 charges, including two counts of genocide.
He faces a maximum life sentence if convicted.
Hours ahead of the reading of the verdicts, a former prosecution spokeswoman for the tribunal was detained by court police.
Florence Hartmann, who served under the Swiss former prosecutor Carla Del Ponte, was convicted of contempt of court by the tribunal in 2009 for publishing confidential material from the trial of former Serbian president Slobodan Milosevic.
The French national was initially fined 7,000 euros, but the fine was later converted to a seven-day prison sentence, which she is not believed to have served.
Protesting his innocence
Karadzic protested his innocence in a rare interview published by the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network on Wednesday.
“I know what I wanted, what I did, even what I dreamed of, and there is no reasonable court that would convict me,” he told the website in an email interview.
“The unnecessary killing of a single man is horrifying, let alone certainly several hundred at least… Those who did it are the enemies of the Serbs first, then enemies of those families, then of the Muslim community,” Karadzic said.
To Bosnian Muslims and Croats, Karadzic – who also faces charges over the shooting of civilians in Sarajevo, capital of the former Yugoslavia – is synonymous with war, death and destruction.
Bosnian Serbs, however, view him as a national hero who created a Serb Republic – a state within a state, which survived under the 1995 Dayton peace agreement.
Such sentiments are widely shared across the border in Serbia.