Sušica camp

The Sušica camp was a detention camp set up by Serb forces for Bosniaks and other non-Serbs in the Vlasenica municipality in eastern Bosnia and Herzegovina.[1]

The camp

The detention camp comprised two main buildings and a small house. The detainees were housed in a hangar which measured approximately 30 by 50 meters. Between late May and October 1992, as many as 8,000 Bosniak civilians and other non-Serbs from Vlasenica and the surrounding villages were successively detained in the hangar at Sušica camp. The number of detainees in the hangar at any one time was usually between 300 and 500. The building was severely overcrowded and living conditions were deplorable.[1]

Men, women and children were detained at the camp, sometimes entire families. Women and children as young as eight years old were usually detained for short periods of time and then forcibly transferred to nearby Muslim areas. The men were held in the camp until its closure in late September 1992, and were then transferred to the larger Batković concentration camp near the town of Bijeljina. Women of all ages were raped or sexually assaulted during their time in the camp by camp guards or other men who were allowed to enter the camp.[1]

Male detainees of the camp suffered a similar fate as the women. They were bullied, tortured and murdered.[1] According to Pero Popovic, a former guard at the camp, they were generally lined up against an electricity pylon just outside the barracks and shot.[2] Detainees at Sušica performed forced labour, sometimes at the front lines. Some detainees were killed by camp guards or died from mistreatment. A massacre was committed during the night of 30 September 1992, when the remaining 140 to 150 detainees at Sušica camp were driven out of the camp with buses and executed.[3]

War crime verdict

Dragan Nikolić, the commander of the camp, pleaded guilty to crimes against humanity and was sentenced to 20 years imprisonment.[1] Predrag Bastah and Goran Višković were sentenced to 22 years and 18 years of imprisonment, respectively, for their involvement at the Sušica camp.[4]

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c d e "Dragan Nikolić Case Information Sheet" (PDF). International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia.
  2. ^ Cohen, Roger (2 August 1994). "Bosnian Camp Survivors Describe Random Death". New York Times.
  3. ^ "Prosecutor v. Momcilo Krajisnik judgement" (PDF). International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia. 17 March 2009.
  4. ^ "Bastah Predrag and Others". The Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Dragan Nikolić (commander)

Dragan Nikolić (26 April 1957 – 4 June 2018) was a Bosnian Serb army commander of the Sušica detention camp near Vlasenica in eastern Bosnia and Herzegovina who was charged with war crimes. He was arrested in Bosnia and Herzegovina by the NATO-led Stabilization Force (SFOR) and taken to the Hague in Netherlands for trial.Nikolić argued that the sovereignty of Bosnia and Herzogovina was violated when he was abducted by SFOR rather than being voluntarily extradited. He contended that as a result the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) could not exercise jurisdiction over the case. The ICTY Appeals Chamber commented on the need to balance a legitimate expectation that someone accused of "universally condemned offences" be brought to justice "against the principle of State sovereignty and fundamental human rights of the accused".The Appeals Chamber found "no basis upon which jurisdiction should not be exercised". Following the ICTY trial, he was sentenced to 23 years in prison on 18 December 2003. This was reduced to 20 years following a sentence appeal. 8,000 mainly Bosniak civilians were detained in the Sušica camp between May and October 1992.

Nikolić was serving his sentence at a prison in Italy until he was granted early release in 2013. He died in Serbia in June 2018, aged 61, and was buried at Vlasenica.

List of concentration and internment camps

This is a list of internment and concentration camps, organized by country. In general, a camp or group of camps is designated to the country whose government was responsible for the establishment and/or operation of the camp regardless of the camp's location, but this principle can be, or it can appear to be, departed from in such cases as where a country's borders or name has changed or it was occupied by a foreign power.

Certain types of camps are excluded from this list, particularly refugee camps set up to house refugees who have fled across the border from another country in fear of persecution, or have been set up by an international non-governmental organization. Prisoner-of-war camps are treated under a separate category.

List of people indicted in the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia

A total of 161 persons were indicted in the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY). Since the arrest of Goran Hadžić on 20 July 2011, there are no indictees remaining at large. This article lists them along with their ethnic origin, rank or occupation, details of charges against them and the disposition of their cases. The list includes those whose indictments were withdrawn by the ICTY.

Dražen Erdemović, a Bosnian Croat fighting in the Bosnian Serb contingent, and Franko Simatović, an ethnic Croat and high-ranking official of the Yugoslav State Security Service, are the only indictees on this list who crossed either religious and/or ethnic lines. Biljana Plavšić is the sole female ICTY indictee.

Since the arrest of Goran Hadžić on 20 July 2011, there are no indictees remaining at large.The ICTY announced a verdict in its last ongoing case on November 22, 2017: Ratko Mladić, sentenced to life imprisonment, Eight cases on listed as on appeal as of November, 2017. 13 defendants were transferred to other courts, with 11 being convicted, one of them, Rahim Ademi, acquitted, and another, Vladimir Kovačević, was ruled mentally unfit to stand trial in 2004. Additionally, it was reported that two acquittals (from 2013) had been overturned by an appeals panel and new trials are pending, for Franko Simatović and Jovica Stanišić.

The list contains 161 names. 94 of these are Serbs, 29 are Croats, 9 are Albanians, 9 are Bosniaks, 2 are Macedonians and 2 are Montenegrins. The others are of unknown ethnicity or their charges have been withdrawn.

There are 62 convicted Serbs, 18 convicted Croats, 5 convicted Bosniaks, 2 convicted Montenegrins, 1 convicted Macedonian and 1 convicted Albanian in this list.

Wartime sexual violence

Wartime sexual violence is rape or other forms of sexual violence committed by combatants during armed conflict, war, or military occupation often as spoils of war; but sometimes, particularly in ethnic conflict, the phenomenon has broader sociological motives. Wartime sexual violence may also include gang rape and rape with objects. It is distinguished from sexual harassment, sexual assaults, and rape committed amongst troops in military service. It also covers the situation where girls and women are forced into prostitution or sexual slavery by an occupying power.

During war and armed conflict, rape is frequently used as a means of psychological warfare in order to humiliate the enemy. Wartime sexual violence may occur in a variety of situations, including institutionalized sexual slavery, wartime sexual violence associated with specific battles or massacres, and individual or isolated acts of sexual violence.

Rape can also be recognized as genocide or ethnic cleansing when committed with the intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a targeted group; however, rape remains widespread in conflict zones. There are other international legal instruments to prosecute perpetrators but this has occurred as late as the 1990s. However, these legal instruments have so far only been used for international conflicts, thus putting the burden of proof in citing the international nature of conflict in order for prosecution to proceed.

Zaklopača massacre

The Zaklopača massacre occurred three years before the Srebrenica Genocide, at the time when Serb forces were committing a campaign of ethnic cleansing of the Bosniak civilians in the Srebrenica region. According to Helsinki Watch at least 83 Bosniaks were killed including 11 children and 16 elderly persons. According to the Institute for the Research of Genocide, Canada:

On 16 May 1992, Serb forces approached the village and demanded Bosniak residents to hand over their weapons. Except few hunting rifles, Bosniak residents did not have any combat weapons to defend themselves. When the Serbs learned that the residents were effectively unarmed, they blocked all exists of the village and massacred at least 63 Bosniak men, women and children.

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