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Thursday, 2 August, 2001, 20:11 GMT 21:11 UK
Survivors condemn 'lenient' verdict
relatives of Srebrenica survivors
Survivors say 46 years is not severe enough
Survivors of the Srebrenica massacre have reacted angrily to the 46-year sentence handed to the former Bosnian Serb general Radislav Krstic.

Weeping and holding hands while watching the court session on television, women from Srebrenica screamed at the verdict, believing it too lenient.

Today, among the mothers with wounded souls, I do not see even a bit of satisfaction at the sentence

Zumra Sehomerovic, Association of the Mothers of Srebrenica
"Let him go and come back among us. We will give him a verdict," said Behara Hasanovic.

"For 10,000 of our sons, only 46 years! His people have ripped my son from my arms," she added.

Munira Subasic, who lost her husband and a son in the massacre said the verdict had left her bitter.

"We, survivors of the Srebrenica massacre, don't think that justice has been served ... He should have been sentenced to life."

She added: "He probably will not live through 46 years in prison, but it is a symbolic matter."

"If we are deprived of the right to justice, then we shall seek the right to revenge," she warned.


Suhra Malic, who lost two sons the Srebrenica massacre, also voiced her anger.

Radislav Krstic
General Krstic argued he was innocent and was elsewhere at the time
"He (Krstic) is still going to have life, his family is going to visit him and we don't even know where our dead ones were buried," she said.

Some residents of Bosnia's Serb areas also expressed anger over the sentence, but for different reasons.

"If I had some power I would not put Krstic on trial, I would give him an award," said Zoran, a 27-year-old mechanic.

"Compared to what they (Muslims) did to us (Serbs) in the past I do not think that we are even with Srebrenica."

Others voiced more moderate views.

"I do not know if Krstic is really guilty," said one man.

"But while I was abroad last year I've seen some documentary movies on the fall of Srebrenica and if it is true what they say, I think that is really disgusting," he added.

'A good result'

Jim Landale, spokesman for the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia welcomed the guilty verdict on former General Krstic as "a very good result".

Mass war grave near Srebrenica
Srebrenica was Europe's worst massacre since World War II
He told the BBC that this was the biggest trial that the Hague had hosted and the 46 year sentence was the longest sentence it had delivered.

"It shows the victims of the Srebrenica massacre that the international community has not forgotten about them," he said.

It was the first time that a court had accepted that genocide had taken place in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

Looking forward to a possible trial of the two most wanted war crimes suspects still at large, Radovan Karadzic and Ratko Mladic, Mr Landale said that they had also been indicted for alleged crimes in Srebrenica.

He added that evidence used in Krstic's trial might be used in future prosecutions.

Stephanie Frease Coalition for International Justice
"It is a very significant case"
See also:

03 Aug 01 | Europe
Court tense for Krstic verdict
02 Aug 01 | Europe
General guilty of Bosnia genocide
13 Mar 00 | Europe
Q and A: General Krstic on trial
05 Aug 00 | Europe
Mladic blamed for Bosnia massacre
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