Naser Oric denies Srebrenica massacre accusations

Former Bosniak military officer Naser Oric denies charges over killing of three Serb prisoners during Bosnian War

Photo by: AP
Photo by: AP

Graveyard in Srebrenica near Sarajevo, Bosnia


Former Bosniak military officer Naser Oric, has denied involvement in the killing of three Serb prisoners in Srebrenica during the Bosnian War.

"Your Honour, I am not guilty under any count of the indictment," he told the state court.

Oric, absolved of charges in 2008 by the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY), was arrested again in Switzerland this June. This time the warrant was issued by Serbia, charging him of the prisoners killing in Bosnia.

Nevertheless, Bosnia extradited Oric, stating that the defendant should be tried in the country where the alleged crimes took place, Reuters reported.

Moreover, the accused is now facing a trial in which the Serbs consider him a criminal, while the Bosnian Muslims consider him a war hero who defended them against the Serbs.

In 1995 Srebrenica, supposedly a UN protected area, was taken over by Bosnian Serbs who were killing Bosnian Muslims.

Reportedly, over 8,000 Muslim men and boys were killed during the Srebrenica massacre, which was also called a genocide by The ICTY - and the International Court of Justice.

The Muslim victims were led into a warehouse and executed with machine guns and grenades, afterwards they were buried in mass graves.

Along with Oric, Bosnian Muslim soldier Sabahudin Muhic was also charged over the prisoners’ killing, but was acquitted. However, he is imprisoned over other charges.

Oric’s defence team has stated that the charges he is tried for are the same as the charges he has been acquitted from in the past by the ICTY.

Defence lawyer Lejla Covic, told Reuters that "It is debatable."

Twenty years later, the anniversary of the massacre brought back sad memories to those who lost their loved ones, as mourners buried 136 newly found bones from the massacre victims. 

Srebrenica massacre 20 year ceremony, where 136 new victims were buried during the memorial service



TRTWorld and agencies