Orić and Muhić acquitted – again

Orić and Muhić acquitted – again

BiH Court acquitted Srebrenica warlords, Naser Orić and Sabahudin Muhić, for war crimes against Serbs in Srebrenica area during the war in BiH 1992-1995.

The second instance verdict of the Court triggered bitter reactions in Republika Srpska and Serbia, with the common view that the Court made a political, rather than a fair judgement.

“There obviously is no justice for Serb war victims”, said RS National Assembly speaker, Nedeljko Čubrilović, and added that the judgement is “a complete collapse of the BiH judicial system that fully undermines the reconciliation process of the peoples and the building of a democratic society and the rule of law”.

Čubrilović assessed that the BiH Court continued its practice of ignoring crimes committed against Serb civilians and soldiers despite the fact that numerous physical evidence and witness statements exist.

“This is an insult to more than three thousand Serb victims from the region of Birac. Serb villages that were burnt down, civilians killed at the doorstep, the bloody feast in the village of Kravica on Christmas Day in 1993 carried out by the Bosniak army (Army of the Republic Bosnia and Herzegovina – AR BiH), and many other crimes against Serbs in the Bratunac and Srebrenica areas are obviously not interesting for the people in the judiciary of Bosnia and Herzegovina, who with such judgments ruin the least grain of trust in this country”, Čubrilović stressed.

Republika Srpska president, Željka Cvijanović, said that the acquittal of Naser Orić and Sabahudin Muhić is yet another confirmation that the BiH state level judiciary serves the Bosniak wartime policy.

“Given the practice of the BiH Court so far, such a judgement has been expected and only confirmed our suspicions in the partiality of this so-called ‘judiciary’”, Cvijanovic said.

She pointed out that the judgement will deepen the distrust and will have a negative impact on the already fragile relations in BiH.

“This judgement practically gives amnesty to all the monstrous crimes against Serbs in Podrinje. If this is the justice intended for Serbs in BiH, then we shouldn’t be surprised that Serbs have less and less trust in the joint future in BiH”, Cvijanović pointed out.

The President of the opposition Serb Democratic Party (SDS), Vukota Govedarica, said in a written statement that the acquittal was the final proof that there is no justice for the Serbs in BiH.

“Who will face justice for the slaughtered Serbs, the raped Serb women and the killed Serb children? Obviously no one, because justice is in the hands of politics, rather than the law. Serb victims deserve peace and justice which they can’t get as long as those responsible for their deaths remain free”, Govedarica said.

All associations that gather the Serb veterans, victims and their families condemned the verdict, saying that it is obvious that there is no justice in BiH Court and that nobody wants to hear the Serb witnesses.

A large number of Orić and Muhić supporters waited in front of Court building to hear the verdict. After it was made known, the mass welcomed it with excitement. After the verdict, which is final, Orić said that the Court made the right decision and expressed condolences to families of the Serb victims. He also thanked those Serbs who confirmed in court that their relatives died in battles and not as civilians, victims of war crimes.

Orić and Muhićwere are accused of having killed three of the captured Serbs in villages Zalazje, Lolići and Kunjerac.  On June 8, the Appellate Chamber of the BiH Court abolished the first-instance acquittal of Orić and Muhić and ordered a retrial, due to substantial violations of the criminal procedure provisions./IBNA