Former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic has been convicted of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity by a United Nations tribunal. He is the highest-level figure to be convicted by the tribunal for crimes committed during the 1992-1995 Bosnian War, which left more than 100,000 dead. Karadzic was convicted of genocide for the 1995 Srebrenica massacre, in which 8,000 Bosnian Muslims were killed during a campaign to kill “every able-bodied male” in the town. He was also convicted of crimes associated with the four-year siege of Sarajevo. On Thursday, tribunal Judge O-Gon Kwon read the verdict.
Judge O-Gon Kwon: “Mr. Karadzic, could you please stand? For the reasons summarized during this hearing, the chamber, having heard all of the evidence presented by the prosecution and the defense, finds you, Radovan Karadzic, not guilty of count one, genocide; guilty of the following counts: count two, genocide; count three, persecution, a crime against humanity; count four, extermination, a crime against humanity; count five, murder, a crime against humanity.”
The verdict from the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia comes 21 years after Karadzic was indicted and eight years after he was arrested on a public bus after evading authorities for more than a decade. He was sentenced to 40 years in prison, with credit for eight years of time served. Most convicted by the tribunal have served two-thirds of their sentences, meaning that it’s possible 70-year-old Karadzic could walk out of prison.