Srebrenica survivors hope Karadzic gets life sentence

1 / 3
Bosnian Muslims, survivors of Srebrenica 1995 massacre, accompanied by other citizens of North-Eastern town of Tuzla, gather at Tuzla city center, on March 11, 2019, in memory of all the victims of the massacre, including those who are still logged as missing. (AFP)
2 / 3
Bosnian Muslims, survivors of Srebrenica 1995 massacre, accompanied by other citizens of North-Eastern town of Tuzla, gather at Tuzla city center, on March 11, 2019, in memory of all the victims of the massacre, including those who are still logged as missing. (AFP)
3 / 3
Bosnian Muslims, survivors of Srebrenica 1995 massacre, accompanied by other citizens of North-Eastern town of Tuzla, gather at Tuzla city center, on March 11, 2019, in memory of all the victims of the massacre, including those who are still logged as missing. (AFP)
Updated 12 March 2019

Srebrenica survivors hope Karadzic gets life sentence

  • Kulaglic said “all the men” in his family were killed in the slaughter, including his father, uncles and their sons

TUZLA, Bosnia and Herzegovina: Survivors of Bosnia’s Srebrenica massacre said Monday they hoped a UN court would sentence convicted war criminal Radovan Karadzic to life in jail when he receives his final verdict next week.
More than 23 years after the mass killings in Srebrenica, in which nearly 8,000 Bosnian men and boys were slaughtered by Bosnian Serb forces, the former Bosnian Serb political leader will hear a final ruling on appeal on March 20.
In 2016 Karadzic was convicted of genocide for his role in the July 1995 Srebrenica massacre and sentenced to 40 years by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY).
The 73-year-old was found guilty of 10 in total, including the orchestration of the 44-month siege of Sarajevo in which some 10,000 people died.
As part of a monthly tradition, some 100 people gathered in the center of the northeastern city Tuzla on Monday to demand justice over the Srebrenica killings.
“Like all other survivors of the Srebrenica genocide, I expect Radovan Karadzic to be sentenced to life imprisonment,” Amir Kulaglic, a 59-year-old Bosnian Muslim survivor, told AFP.
Kulaglic said “all the men” in his family were killed in the slaughter, including his father, uncles and their sons.
He joined demonstrators who stood in pouring rain to hold banners with photos of Srebrenica victims.
Some carried cloth banners embroidered with the names of those killed, their birth year and hometown.
Hajjra Catic, the 74-year-old president of an association of mothers in Srebrenica, said she also hoped Karadzic would get a life sentence.
But above all, she said wants to find the remains of her son Nino.
He was 26 in July 1995, working in Srebrenica as a correspondent for local media.
“I’ve been looking for 23 years and I’m living for the day I can bury him,” added the mother, whose husband was also killed in the massacre and found in a mass grave in 2005.
Next week’s verdict will be delivered by the Hague-based International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals, which took over from the ICTY.
After years on the run, Karadzic was caught in 2008 on a Belgrade bus, disguised as a faith healer. His trial opened a year later, lasting until October 2014.
Karadzic’s military alter-ego, former Bosnian Serb army commander Ratko Mladic, is also currently appealing a life sentence before the international court on similar charges.


French PM pays homage to aid workers killed in Niger

Updated 23 min 52 sec ago

French PM pays homage to aid workers killed in Niger

  • PM Jean Castex sought to assure the parents of the four women and two men that all of France mourned their passing
  • The six, their Nigierien guide and driver, were killed on Sunday in a wildlife haven about an hour’s drive southeast of Niamey

PARIS: France’s prime minister led a memorial service Friday for six aid workers killed in Niger in what investigators said had likely been a premeditated attack targeting Westerners.
As the six caskets lay side by side in the VIP section of Orly Airport south of Paris, where the bodies arrived Friday from Niamey, Jean Castex sought to assure the parents of the four women and two men that all of France mourned their passing.
“In front of these six coffins... I want first of all to express the pain, the incomprehension, the anger of all French people,” said the premier as he saluted the youngsters’ generosity and altruism.
“The victims of this attack came to Niger to do good. They met with evil.”
The six, their Nigierien guide and driver, were killed on Sunday in a wildlife haven about an hour’s drive southeast of Niamey.
The area is a popular destination for weekend leisure trips by Niamey residents, including foreigners.
They worked for French NGO Acted and were aged between 25 and 30.
“This incarnation of evil, France unfortunately knows it only too well... it is very likely the same hatred, the same cowardice, the same inhumanity at work in Niger and Bataclan,” the Parisian concert venue targeted by extremists in 2015, said Castex.
And he stressed there was “no question of giving an inch of ground to criminal fanaticism or to enemies of the freedom to act, think and engage.”
Earlier, a source close to an ongoing investigation by French anti-terror prosecutors told AFP the attack “appears to have been premeditated to target a priori mainly Westerners.”
France’s anti-terror prosecutor’s office said Monday it would probe charges of murder “with links to a terrorist enterprise” and “criminal terrorist association” in relation to the killings.
A team of 11 specialized investigators departed France for Niger the following day.
No one has claimed responsibility for the attack carried out by gunmen on motorcycles.
But “given the modus operandi, the terrorist hypothesis is being favored,” the source told AFP.
Suspicion has fallen on Daesh in the Great Sahara, active in the shared border region of Mali, Niger and Burkina Faso, where it is being pursued by France’s Barkhane force fighting extremists in the Sahel.
The French investigation will seek to determine whether the assailants had been tipped off about the humanitarians’ visit to the national park.
French President Emmanuel Macron has described it as “manifestly a terrorist attack” and said there would be repercussions.
“We’re pursuing action to eradicate the terrorist groups, with the strengthened support of our partners,” Macron said.