THE HAGUE, Netherlands The Yugoslav war-crimes tribunal convicted a former senior Bosnian Serb Army commander Wednesday of genocide for playing a key role in Europe’s worst massacre since World War II and sentenced him to life imprisonment.
Judges at the U.N. court said Gen. Zdravko Tolimir was the “right hand” of Bosnian Serb military chief Gen. Ratko Mladic, who is considered the chief architect of the murder of some 8,000 Muslim men and boys at the Srebrenica enclave in eastern Bosnia in July 1995.
“The accused not only had knowledge of genocidal intent of others but also possessed it himself,” Presiding Judge Christoph Fluegge said. “He is therefore responsible for the crime of genocide.”
Tolimir stood, crossed himself three times and removed his glasses but showed no emotion as Fluegge told him he had been convicted of genocide and would spend the rest of his life in prison.
Before the judgment was read, he told the court: “I wish for these proceedings to be concluded in accordance with God’s will.”
Tolimir, 64, is the latest Serb soldier to be convicted of genocide in the bloody climax of Bosnia’s 1992-95 war that left around 100,000 dead.