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Hague tribunal convicts Bosnian Muslim commanders

Written by: Staff

THE HAGUE, Mar 16 (Reuters) UN war crimes judges found two former Bosnian Muslim army commanders guilty of atrocities committed by their troops on Bosnian Croat and Bosnian Serb civilians during the 1992-95 war.

Judges at the Hague tribunal found former General Enver Hadzihasanovic, 56, and Brigadier Amir Kubura, 42, guilty of failing to prevent or punish atrocities by troops under their command, including foreign Islamic mujahideen fighters.

The men are among the highest-ranking Bosnian Muslims to stand trial in The Hague.

Hadzihasanovic was sentenced to five years jail and Kubura to two and a half years. Prosecutors had requested 20 years for Hadzihasanovic and 10 years for Kubura.

The tribunal said prosecutors had failed to convince the court that the men had full knowledge of the abuses and effective control over the perpetrators, in particular the mujahideen, many of whom came from North Africa and the Middle East to support fellow Muslims during the bloody conflict in the former Yugoslavia.

Hadzihasanovic and Kubura were charged with commanding forces that murdered and abused at least 200 Bosnian Serb and Bosnian Croat civilians during Muslim attacks on Croat forces in central Bosnia between January 1993 and January 1994.

Prosecutors said captives were forced to dig trenches under fire or used as human shields.

Bosnia's Muslims and Croats began the war as allies against the Serbs but then fought each other for territory in Bosnia-Herzegovina.


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