Posts Tagged ‘Maksim Sokolovic’
In 1994, Austrian court tried Dusko Cvjetkovic, who was charged with genocide in Bosnia and Herzegovina. However, he was acquitted.
In 1997 German courts sentenced Novislav Djajic to five years for complicity in murders committed in Foca. He was released early and has since been deported. [note: The judgement ruled that genocide took place in the Bosnian municipality of Foča]
In 2001, the German courts sentenced Maksim Sokolovic to nine years’ imprisonment for complicity in genocide committed in Kalesija.
Meanwhile, Germany saw the first trial for genocide since the end of the World War Two when local courts sentenced Nikola Jorgic in 2000 to life imprisonment for genocide in the Doboj area.
Pronouncing the verdict, the German Federal Court said that German courts had the right “to try genocide indictees, no matter where the crime was committed”.
German courts in 2001 meanwhile sentencted Djuradj Kuslic [Kusljic], a former police chief in Vrbanjci, near Kotor Varos, to life imprisonment for complicity in genocide.
On 24 May 1997, a 34-year-old Bosnian Serb was sentenced by a German court to five years in jail for taking part in a massacre of Bosnian Muslims during the war in Bosnia.
Novislav Djajic was found guilty on 14 counts of acting as accomplice to murder and attempted murder. It was the first war crimes trial in Germany since the Nuremberg tribunal on Nazi war crimes more than 50 years ago.
Although there was no sufficient evidence that Novislav Djajic had “intent” to commit genocide, Judge Ermin Briessmann recalled that the court established, beyond reasonable doubt, that Serb forces committed genocide in the Bosnian municipality of Foča [pronounciation: FO-CHA] in 1992 (three years before the Srebrenica genocide).
The judge held Djajic responsible for the massacre of Bosnian Muslims. He recalled how Djajic along with other Bosnian Serb troops, had lined up 15 Bosnian Muslim civilians on a bridge over the river Drina near the town of Foca in eastern Bosnia in April 1992 and shot 14 of them in revenge after their colleagues were killed by a mine.
Novislav Djajic filed an appeal arguing he was innocent and challenging the judgement that Serb forces committed the Bosnian genocide. At Djajic’s appeal on 23 May 1997, the Bavarian Appeals Chamber confirmed that the acts of genocide against the Bosnian Muslim population were committed in June 1992 in the administrative district of Foca.
On 27 September 1997, a German court convicted of genocide and other charges in the killing of Bosnian Muslims during the war in Bosnia. On 18 December 1999, Jorgic was sentenced to life in prison by Düsseldorf High Court.
”Whoever hoped that events like the Nazi genocide of the Jews could never be repeated is bitterly disappointed after the events in the former Yugoslavia,” Judge Gunter Krentz said as he imposed the life sentence.
Nikola Jorgic had been tried in Dusseldorf on 11 counts of genocide and 30 of murder as well as lesser charges. German justice authorities had agreed to try the case because the United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia was overburdened and because Jorgic was arrested in Germany.
On 30 November 1999, a court in Dusseldorf sentenced Maksim Sokolovic, a 59-year-old Bosnian Serb and longtime German resident, to nine years in prison for war crimes in Bosnia in 1992. Sokolovic, who led a paramilitary unit, was convicted of complicity in genocide and other crimes in eastern Bosnia. He was tried in Germany to ease the caseload at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia at the Hague.
His charges related to a question whether or not genocide was committed in Bosnia-Herzegovina against the Bosnian Muslim population. The court in Duesseldorf, presided by a German-Jewish Holocaust survivor, reached unanimous consensus that Serb forces indeed committed genocide. Sokolovic was found guilty of participating in the systematic extermination of Muslims during the Bosnian war. His conviction relates to war crimes in the municipality of Kalesija, near Zvornik.
Excerpt from “Mass rape: the war against women in Bosnia-Herzegovina” By Alexandra Stiglmayer, Marion Faber
“I saw about seven or eight little girls who died after they were raped. I saw how they took them away to be raped and then brought them back unconscious. They three them down in front of us…”
The Rape Camp in Doboj
According to the statements of three women, there was a women’s camp in the northern Bosnian town of Doboj in which approximately 2,000 Bosniak and Croatian women as well as a few children were detained in May and June 1992 (three years before the Srebrenica genocide. Note that Doboj Genocide is another legally validated case of genocide in Bosnia.). This number is very high, and I have discussed it at length with the women. They insist it is correct and say that the gymnasium of the Djure Pucar Stari school in which they were housed was very big, that international handball tournaments were held in it previously, that it even had tiers of seats, and that it was “completely overcrowded.”
“We couldn’t move without stepping on somebody,” says forty-year-old Kadira.” “There might even have been 2,500 women.” Read the rest of this entry »
Foca (Bosnian: Foča, pronounces as: FO-CHA) is a town in eastern Bosnia and Herzegovina on the Drina River, close to Srebrenica. In 1991, the population of the municipality of Foca consisted of 20,790 Bosniaks (Muslims), 18,315 Serbs (Orthodox), 94 Croats (Catholics), 463 Yugoslavs, and 851 Others.
In 1992, the city came under the control of Serbian paramilitaries. Most of the Bosniaks were expelled from the area. Foča was also the site of a rape camp in Partizan hall which was set up by the Serb authorities in which hundreds of Bosniak women were raped.
Once the Serb forces cleared Eastern Bosnia of much of its Bosniak civilian population, the towns and villages were securely in their hands. All of the Serb forces (i.e. the military, police, paramilitaries and sometimes, villagers too) applied the same pattern: houses and apartments of the expelled population were systematically ransacked or burnt down; remaining members of the Bosniak civilian population were rounded up or captured, and sometimes beaten or killed in the process. Read the rest of this entry »
Doboj was strategically important during the Bosnian War. Before the war (in 1991), the population of Doboj consisted of 41,164 Bosniaks (Muslims), 39,820 Serbs (Orthodox), 13,264 Croats (Catholics), 5,765 Yugoslavs, and 2,536 Others.
In May 1992, the occupation of Doboj by the Serbian forces began. The Serbian Democratic Party took over the governing of the city. What followed was a mass disarming and subsequently mass arrests of all non-Serb civilians (namely Bosniaks and Croats). Many instances of war crimes and ethnic cleansing were committed by Serb forces and at least 1000 Bosniak and Croat civilians were killed in sadistic massacres perpetrated by the Serb military and paramilitary forces. By July 1992, Bosniaks and Croats virtually disappeared from the face of this town. They were persecuted, tortured, many of them fled voluntarily to find safety from Serbian terror campaign, but overwhelming majority were herded onto trains and sent to Bosanski Novi. There, Serbs separated men from women, and continued to terrorize, rape and kill Bosniak and Croat civilians.
Serb forces were implicated in the systematic looting and destruction of Bosniak and Croatian homes and villages during the Bosnian War. Women were raped and civilians tortured and killed. Widespread looting and destruction of Bosniak homes and property took place daily and the Bosnian Muslim mosques in town were destroyed. Many of the non-Serbs who were not immediately killed were detained at various locations in the town, subjected to inhumane conditions, including regular beatings, torture and strenuous forced labour. A school in Grabska and the factory used by the Bosanka company that produced jams and juices in Doboj was used as a rape camp. Read the rest of this entry »
On 10 May 1992, Serb forces attacked Bosniak village of Gornja Grapska in the municipality of Doboj. Pre-war populaton of the village consisted of 2,260 Bosniaks, 27 Croats, 6 Yugoslavs, and 4 Others.
The village was unarmed and undefended. Serbs slaughtered at least 34 Bosnian Muslim women, children and the elderly men in the massacre. After the massacre, they plundered the village and torched Bosnian Muslim houses.
At least 20 Bosniak women, some of them underage, were captured and transfered to Doboj where they were kept for months and brutally raped in a local police station. After months of terror, they were released to Red Cross and told by their captors to “bear Serb children.”