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Monday, November 16, 1998 Published at 11:14 GMT


World: Europe

Three guilty in Bosnia trial

Mass unmarked graves have been discovered in Bosnia

Two Bosnian Muslims and a Bosnian Croat have been found guilty of war crimes at a Yugoslav war tribunal in the Hague.


Gillian Sharp: "Judge Adolphus Karibi-Whyte said he was appalled at conditions in Celibici"
The presiding judge, Adolphus Karibi-Whyte, sentenced them to jail terms of between seven and 20 years for crimes and atrocities committed against Bosnian Serbs in Celibici prison camp.


[ image: The camp at Celebici housed Bosnian Serb prisoners]
The camp at Celebici housed Bosnian Serb prisoners
He said he had been appalled by conditions in the detention centre.

Witnesses at the trial described how camp inmates were tortured, beaten to death by guards wielding baseball bats, set on fire, and raped.


The BBC's David Eades: "It has taken nineteen months to secure three convictions"
Camp commander Zdravko Mucic, a Croat, his Muslim deputy Hazim Delic and guard Esad Landzo, also a Muslim, were found guilty.

A fourth man, Bosnian Muslim military commander Zejnil Delalic, had the case against him dismissed.

In Celebici region, more than half the population were Bosnian Muslims, and a quarter Bosnian Croats.

It is more than a year since the tribunal convicted a Bosnian Serb war criminal.

Camp of absolute fear

Hazim Delic was found guilty of murder and rape and given the heaviest sentence - 20 years.

Judges said he had taken sadistic pleasure in causing pain and created a climate of terror and absolute fear around the camp.


Lotte Leicht of Human Rights Watch: "They are charged with very serious crimes"
Esad Landzo, who had admitted some crimes, was found guilty of murder and sentenced to 15 years in prison.

Judges did not accept his claim that he had been forced to do what he did.

Command hierachy

The other two defendents had not been accused of directly committing atrocities but of failing to stop them.

The prosecution had attempted to suggest that the entire command hierarchy could be held responsible for war crimes, and not just those involved in the day-to-day running of the camp.

However, the regional military commander, Zejnil Dalalic, was acquitted on all charges.

Judges found that his connection to the Celibici camp was too remote.

But they said that Zdravko Mucic failed to ensure that prisoners in his charge were well treated.

He was sentenced to seven years in prison.

In the trial the camp commander said that he helped the Serbs being detained.

He argued that he tried to bring them food and medicine.



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