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War Crimes Suspect Drinks Poison While Still In UN Court After Ruling, Dies Later

A former Bosnian Croat General has died after drinking poison seconds after his war crimes sentence of 20 years in prison was upheld at a United Nations tribunal in The Hague.

Upon the pronunciation of the verdict, Slobodan Praljak shouted angrily: “Praljak is not a criminal. I reject your verdict.”

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He then went on to drink the poison, and then yelled again saying “I am not a war criminal. I oppose this conviction.”

Croatian local television report the general to have later died in a hospital in The Hague.

Praljak was convicted of involvement in a military drive to evict Muslims out of Bosnia during the Bosnian war in the 1990s, sparked by the breakup of Yugoslavia.

He was specifically charged with ordering the destruction of Mostar’s 16th-century bridge in November 1993, which judges in the first trial had said “caused disproportionate damage to the Muslim civilian population”.

The war mainly pitted Bosnian Muslims against Bosnian Serbs, though there were also deadly clashes involving Bosnian Muslims and Croats after an alliance fell apart.

Reports indicate that at least 100,000 people died, with 2.2 million others forced to flee their homes in the three-year conflict.

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Written by How Africa

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