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Former Serb Commander Charged By UN Tribunal

Former Serb Commander Charged By Un Tribunal With Crimes Against Humanity

The United Nations war crimes tribunal for the former Yugoslavia today revealed charges of crimes against humanity against an ex-Serbian military commander for his role in planning and carrying out the massacre in 1995 of 1,000 Bosnian Muslim men from Srebrenica.

Prosecutors at the Hague-based International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), today unsealed the charges against Milorad Trbic, who had been named late last month in the same indictment as Vinko Pandurevic, another commander of the so-called Zvornik Brigade charged with genocide for his role in the deadly July 1995 shelling that “virtually eliminated the presence of any Bosnian Muslims in the Srebrenica enclave area, thus continuing an ethnic cleansing campaign which had begun in the spring of 1992.”

Under the indictment, Mr. Trbic was charged with one count of crimes against humanity for his individual role in paramilitary actions that took place between 11 July 1995 and 1 November 1995. He was transferred to the Tribunal’s Detention Unit yesterday and his initial appearance before the UN court has been set for 13 April.

According to the Tribunal, Mr. Trbic, who joined the Bosnian Serb Army (VRS) when the war in Bosnia started, was appointed to the position of Deputy Commander of the 3rd Battalion of the Zvornik Brigade. On 14 July 1995, he allegedly participated in the killing of 20 Bosnian Muslim males in front of the gymnasium of the Grbavci School in the village of Orahovac, where hundreds of Bosnian Muslim males had been detained.

That same day, VRS personnel from the Zvornik Brigade transported these Bosnian Muslim males from the school at Grbavci to a nearby field, where personnel, including members of the 4th Battalion of the Zvornik Brigade, ordered the prisoners off the trucks and summarily executed them with automatic weapons.

According to the indictment, “Milorad Trbic assisted in loading the Muslim men onto the trucks to the execution sites and assisted in the executions by shooting Muslim men with his rifle. Approximately 1,000 Bosnian Muslim males were killed.”

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