Bosnian Croat war criminal Slobodan Praljak dies after taking poison in UN courtroom
A convicted Bosnian Croat war criminal Slobodan Praljak passed away in hospital after taking ‘poison’ inside United Nation courtroom.
Praljak shouted, “I am not a war criminal!” threw back his head, drank liquid from a small bottle and told the court he had taken poison. A flustered judge halted the hearing and Praljak was rushed to a nearby hospital, where he couldn’t further survive.
Slobodan Praljak’s lawyer said, he took poison after the UN tribunal in The Hague after his sentence for war crimes in the Bosnian War.
Last week, former Bosnian Serb military commander Ratko Mladic was convicted of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity for mass killings and expulsions of Muslims and the siege of Sarajevo, and sentenced to life in prison. The judges in the first trial had said “caused disproportionate damage to the Muslim civilian population”.
Slobodan Praljak, 72, died in a nearby hospital on despite efforts to save him, a spokesman for the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY), Nenad Golcevski, told media persons.
UN tribunal judge confirmed a twenty-year war crimes sentence on former Bosnian Croat military commander Slobodan Praljak.
The death cast a pall over the last case at the groundbreaking International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. Judges upheld sentences ranging from 10 to 25 years against Praljak and five other Bosnian Croat wartime political and military leaders for their part in a plan linked to Croatia’s late former President Franjo Tudjman to violently carve out a Croat-dominated mini-state in Bosnia during the Balkan wars by killing, mistreating and deporting Muslims.
Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic offered his condolences to Praljak’s family and said the former general’s actions reflected the “deep moral injustice” done to him and the five others whose sentences were also upheld by the appeals judges Wednesday.