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UN War Crimes Trial Resumes in Srebrenica Massacre


The U.N. war crimes tribunal in The Hague has resumed the trial of seven former Bosnian Serb military and police officers charged for their alleged role in the 1995 Srebrenica massacre.

Several of those on trial Tuesday face charges of genocide.

Chief Prosecutor Carla Del Ponte used her opening statement today to criticize Serbia's government for failing to arrest and extradite fugitive war crimes suspect Ratko Mladic. She said it is "inexcusable" that the former top commander of Serb forces in Bosnia-Herzegovina has not been detained.

Mladic is thought to be hiding in Serbia. The Hague tribunal indicted him for his role in attacks on civilians during the Balkan conflict of the 1990s, including the Srebrenica massacre.

Serb forces killed about 8,000 Bosnian Muslim men and boys after capturing the town, which the United Nations had declared a Muslim safe haven.

Five of the former officers, Ljubisa Beara, Ljubomir Borovcanin, Vinko Pandurevic, Drago Nikolic and Vujadin Popovic, face various charges, including genocide and extermination. Two others, Radivoje Miletic and Milan Gvero, are charged with such crimes as murder and persecution.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.
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