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UN Court Acquits 2 Serbs of War Crimes

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A U.N. court has acquitted two former Serbian officers of war crimes during the Balkan wars in the 1990s.

Judges at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia ruled Thursday that the prosecution presented insufficient evidence to link Serbian ex-intelligence chief Jovica Stanisic and his former deputy Franko Simatovic to crimes in Croatia and Bosnia.

Prosecutors can appeal the acquittals.

The ruling comes a day after the U.N. war crimes court convicted six Bosnian-Croat political and military leaders on charges of murder, rape and the expulsion of Muslims from Bosnia during the breakup of Yugoslavia.

Judges said Croatian leaders, including the late Croatian President Franjo Tudjman, were complicit in plans to create a Croatian mini-state in Bosnia.



The court said murders, rapes and deportations "were not random acts of a few unruly soldiers," but part of a plan to permanently remove Muslims from territory in Bosnia claimed by Bosnian Croats.

The six convicted were given sentences ranging from 10-25 years.

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