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Bosniak Wartime General Charged Over Massacre of Serbs

Atif Dudakovic and 16 other former soldiers stand accused of killing elderly civilians, destroying Orthodox churches during the 1992-95 conflict.

12 October 2018

Bosnian prosecutors have charged a former army commander for crimes committed during the 1992-1995 war that resulted in the deaths of 300 Serb civilians and captured soldiers.

 

General Atif Dudakovic and 16 other former members of the Army of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina (AR BiH) were charged with crimes against humanity, writes the Independent Balkan News Agency.

 

In addition to the killing of 300 civilians in the west of Bosnia, they are also accused of the destruction of 38 Orthodox churches in the region.

 

Video footage of Atif Dudakovic during the Bosnian war, via Bosniak Revival/Youtube.

 

Part of the indictment concerns war crimes against fellow Bosniaks who were members and supporters of a brief-lived breakaway territory during the war, Balkan Insight reports.

 

VOA reports that the accused were all members of the Bosnian Army’s Fifth Corps, tasked with defending Bosnia’s northwestern Bihac area, which was under siege by Serb forces for the majority of the war.

 

Prosecutors say the 300 victims of the AR BiH killings were mainly elderly civilians or soldiers who had surrendered or been captured, according to IBNA.

 

Many Bosniaks rallied around Dudakovic when several video recordings came to light in 2006, showing Dudakovic’s soldiers killing civilians and burning down villages. The Bosniak member of the tripartite presidency at that time, Sulejman Tihic, said the soldiers had “defended their country against aggression and destruction.”

 

 

  • Dudakovic became the general commander of the Bosnian army after the war, and remains popular with the public. He was arrested in April, but was later released. According to Balkan Insight, his arrest was met with anger from some Bosniak politicians and war veterans.

 

  • Prosecutors said bodies of some victims of the AR BiH killings were exhumed after the war from individual and mass graves. The search for some victims is ongoing.

 

Compiled by Orsolya Liddiard

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