BOSNIAN GENOCIDE JUDGMENT UPHELD
(Source: Interview with Vladimir Srebrov, a founding member of the Serb Democratic Party”, Vreme Magazine, 30 October 1995.)
“The Muslims were to be subjected to a final solution: more than 50% of them were to be killed, a smaller part was to be converted to Orthodoxy, while an even smaller part – those with money, of course – was to be allowed to leave for Turkey, by way of a so-called ‘Turkish corridor’.”
On 26 September 1997 Germany handed down first Bosnian Genocide conviction. Nikola Jorgic was found guilty by the Düsseldorf, Germany, Oberlandesgericht (Higher Regional Court) on 11 counts of genocide. His appeal was rejected by the German Bundesgerichtshof (Federal Supreme Court) on 30 April 1999. He was sentenced to four terms of life imprisonment for his involvement in the Bosnian Genocide.
Nicola Jorgic, a German resident of Bosnian Serb origin, was arrested upon his return to Germany in 1995 and convicted of acting with the intent to commit genocide on 11 counts and other serious crimes against Bosniaks during the 1992-95 Bosnian war.
[Family photo of Nikola Jorgic – the first person to be convicted of Bosnia Genocide – in 1997. Photo is a courtesy of Izvor, published in Lost War Criminals. ]
” Whoever hoped … something like the genocide of the Nazis against the Jews could never be repeated sees himself cruelly disappointed after the events in the former Yugoslavia. “ – German Judge Guenter Krentz said in a 1997 judgement.
Jorgic was not the only one to be convicted of Bosnia Genocide. On 29 November 1999, the Higher Regional Court (Oberlandesgericht) of Dusseldorf condemned Maksim Sokolovic to 9 years in prison for aiding and abetting the crime of genocide and for grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions.
Jorgic challenged the verdict at the European Court of Human Rights, arguing the German court did not have jurisdiction over the case.
On July 12th 2007 – responding to Jorgic’s appeal – European Court of Human Rights upheld Bosnia Genocide judgment and a life term for a Nicola Jorgic for committing acts of genocide in Bosnia during the ethnic cleansing in 1992. Here are some excerpts from the European Court of Human Rights Judgment in a case of Jorgic v. Germany about some of his crimes:
” In its judgment of 26 September 1997 the Düsseldorf Court of Appeal convicted the applicant on eleven counts of genocide (Article 220a nos. 1 and 3 of the Criminal Code – see paragraph 34 below)… It sentenced the applicant to life imprisonment and stated that his guilt was of a particular gravity.
The court found that the applicant had set up a paramilitary group, with whom he had participated in the ethnic cleansing ordered by the Bosnian Serb political leaders and the Serb military in the Doboj region. He had in particular participated in the arrest, detention, assault and ill-treatment of male Muslims of three villages in Bosnia in the beginning of May and June 1992. He had killed several inhabitants of these villages. He had in particular shot twenty-two inhabitants of the village of Grabska – women and disabled and old people – in June 1992. Subsequently, the applicant, together with the paramilitary group he had led, had chased some forty men from their home village and had ordered them to be ill-treated and six of them to be shot. A seventh injured person had died from being burnt with the corpses of the six people shot. In September 1992 the applicant had killed a prisoner, who was being ill-treated by soldiers in the Doboj prison, with a wooden truncheon in order to demonstrate a new method of ill-treatment and killing.
Furthermore, the court found that the applicant had acted with intent to commit genocide within the meaning of Article 220a of the Criminal Code…It concluded that the applicant had therefore acted with intent to destroy the group of Muslims in the North of Bosnia, or at least in the Doboj region. “