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Bosnian Serb Jailed 10 Years For Burning Village


UN War Crimes Tribunal Jails Bosnian Serb For 10 Years For Burning Down Village

The United Nations war crimes tribunal for the former Yugoslavia today sentenced a Bosnian Serb man to 10 years in jail for his role in the burning down of a predominantly Muslim village in May 1992.

Sitting in The Hague, three judges of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia issued their sentence against Miroslav Deronjic, who had previously pleaded guilty to one count of persecutions as a crime against humanity.

Mr. Deronjic, 49, had been a ranking member of the Serbian Democratic Party of Bosnia and Herzegovina and a commander of local forces in the city of Bratunac in 1992, when the Bosnian Serbs moved to carry out a plan to remove Bosnian Muslims from the region.

On 9 May that year, a day after Mr. Deronjic gave the order, Bosnian Serb forces attacked the village of Glogova, which was overwhelmingly Muslim. The villagers were unarmed and had been previously told they would not be attacked.

According to the indictment, the Bosnian Serb forces "systematically set fire" to Glogova's homes, mosque, other buildings, fields and haystacks. Some 64 residents were killed and the rest expelled to other territory.

The ICTY found that Mr. Deronjic coordinated and monitored the razing of much of Glogova, and by giving the order to attack, knew there was a "substantial likelihood" that some residents would be killed.

In reaching its sentence, the judges said they took into account Mr. Deronjic's guilty plea but the events in Glogova were "a classical case of ethnic cleansing," which was the reason the Security Council set up the ICTY. They also noted that many former residents of Glogova suffer lasting effects of the horror of the attack to this day.

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