Serb war crim­i­nal Mrk­sic dies in Lis­bon at age of 68

The China Post - - INTERNATIONAL -

A for­mer Serb army com­man­der serv­ing a 20-year sen­tence for his role in the mas­sacre of Croats dur­ing the Balkans wars has died in Lis­bon at the age of 68, the Por­tuguese gov­ern­ment said Tues­day.

Mile Mrk­sic, a for­mer of­fi­cer in the Yu­goslav army (JNA), was con­victed in 2007 by the In­ter­na­tional Crim­i­nal Tri­bunal for the For­mer Yu­goslavia (ICTY) for aid­ing and abet­ting the tor­ture and mur­der of nearly 200 civil­ians in Vuko­var in eastern Croa­tia in 1991.

His sen­tence by The Hague­based U.N. court was up­held on ap­peal in 2009, and he was trans­ferred in 2012 to a high se­cu­rity prison in Lis­bon.

Mrk­sic died on Sun­day of a ter­mi­nal ill­ness in a hos­pi­tal in the Por­tuguese cap­i­tal, a jus­tice min­istry spokesman told AFP, with­out elab­o­rat­ing.

The cap­ture of Vuko­var by the Yu­goslav army and Serb rebels in 1991 is con­sid­ered a piv­otal event at the out­break of Croa­tia’s 1991-95 war of in­de­pen­dence.

The town was razed and more than 1,000 civil­ians were killed dur­ing the three-month siege and its af­ter­math.

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