Prosecutors seek life sentence for Bosnian Serb leader accused of genocide

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THE HAGUE, The Netherlands – Former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic attended the second day of his appeal hearing against a sentence for genocide and war crimes, which was held at the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals (MICT) in The Hague on Tuesday.

His defence lawyer Peter Robinson claimed that President Karadzic had “no knowledge” of the executions.

“Some day some intercept from the United States or some information will come about and prove conclusively that President Karadzic didn’t know anything about these executions,” he said.

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Karadzic, 72, was found guilty of genocide in May 2016 from 10 counts of war crimes, including the siege of Sarajevo and the 1995 Srebrenica massacre in which the general consensus is that 8,000 Bosnian Muslim men and boys were killed by Bosnian Serb forces, despite other sources finding this to be grossly exaggerated as Bosnian Serbs were also among the dead.

Prosecutors said in their opening statement that Karadzic, who insists he is innocent, played an “essential and leading role” in atrocities.

“(Karadzic) abused his immense power to spill the blood of countless victims. Justice requires that he receive the highest possible sentence, a life sentence,” Katrina Gustafson told the judges.

Karadzic, the political leader of the breakaway Bosnian Serb Republic during the war, told the court: “Nothing that is alleged in these proceedings is true.”

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