Bosniak Fighters’ Convictions for Crimes Against Serbs Upheld

Jail sentences handed down to wartime fighters Senad Dzananovic and Edin Gadzo for unlawfully detaining and assaulting Serbs during the siege of the Bosnian capital Sarajevo in 1992 were confirmed after an appeal.

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Senad Dzananovic (first row, right) and Edin Gadzo (second row, right) in the courtroom. Photo: Bosnian state court.

The appeals chamber of the Bosnian state court on Friday confirmed a first-instance verdict sentencing Senad Dzananovic to 11 years in prison and Edin Gadzo to five years for crimes against Serb civilians in the Alipasino Polje neighbourhood of Sarajevo.

The court said that the defendants’ appeals had been rejected as “unfounded”.

The first-instance verdict in June 2021 established that the men participated in the unlawful detention of Serbs at the Stela Territorial Defence premises in Alipasino Polje.

More than 100 Serb civilians were held in unhygienic and humiliating conditions, and were subjected to murders, inhumane treatment, rape, disappearances, torture and forced labour in the period between May and August 1992.

Dzananovic was convicted of multiple incidents of beating, as well as two rapes.

Dzananovic and Gadzo were both found guilty of abusing a man who they hung on a hook in a butcher’s shop and beat up.

Gadzo was found guilty of assisting in the unlawful detention of civilians on several occasions, transporting them from their homes to detention facilities.

He was also convicted of taking people away to do forced labour, as well as hitting some of the detainees.

Dzananovic and Gadzo were members of the Stela Territorial Defence force, and of special units of the Bosnian Army.

However, the first-instance verdict found it had not been proved beyond reasonable doubt that Dzananovic was the de facto manager of the detention facilities or that Gadzo issued orders.

Friday’s verdict cannot be appealed.

Emina Dizdarević Tahmiščija

This post is also available in: Bosnian