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'Butcher of Bosnia' Gets 40 Years for Genocide

Radovan Karadzic also guilty of war crimes
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 24, 2016 11:00 AM CDT

(Newser) – A UN tribunal has found Radovan Karadzic, aka the "Butcher of Bosnia," guilty of genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity and sentenced the 70-year-old to 40 years in prison. The International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia found the former Bosnian Serb leader "criminally responsible" for the 3.5-year siege of Sarajevo that killed 12,000 and for the slaying of 8,000 Muslim men and boys at Srebrenica during the Bosnian war, reports the Guardian. The New York Times says the atrocities "were part of the most severe war crimes since World War II." The tribunal has previously convicted and sentenced 80 people; three others are on trial, including Karadzic's military chief.

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Karadzic had pleaded not guilty to 11 charges, including two counts of genocide, noting he had tried to protect Serbs and was a "true friend to Muslims," per the Times. But after a 491-day trial, judge O-Gon Kwon said Thursday that Karadzic was "consistently informed" about Bosnian Serb forces targeting civilians in Sarajevo and "in agreement with the plan of the killings" at Srebrenica, report the BBC and CNN. He was found guilty of all charges but one: a genocide charge related to a campaign to expel Bosnian Muslims and Croats from traditionally-Serb areas. However, he was convicted of persecution, extermination, deportation, forcible transfer, and murder in that case. (Read more genocide stories.)

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