Local Bosnian reacts to Serb general sentence

A UN court gave Rakto Mladic life in prison.

BOISE - A life sentence has been handed down to former Gen. Ratko Mladic, known as the butcher of Bosnia, after a United Nations court found him guilty of genocide and crimes against humanity.

The UN court says Mladic significantly contributed to some of the worst atrocities during Bosnian War. From 1992 to 1995, at least 100,000 people were killed and millions forced to flee their homes.

"It's closure,” said Nermin Mustafic, a local man who escaped the war. “It's closure for all of us who have survived the genocide and lived through it and we're fortunate enough to be here."

One of the most infamous crimes that Mladic was charged with is the massacre at Srebrenica. At least 8,000 men and boys were killed.

That's where Nermin Mustafic was born and raised.

"So ‘92 is where the war started,” he said. “From ‘92 to ‘95 we were kind of cut off from the rest of the world."

No electricity and very little food.

"In all three of those years there was always fighting going on,” he said. “Then all of a sudden one day we were harvesting wheat and then the orders came in saying we have to evacuate."

Thousands of women and children fleeing to catch buses to get out of the town. The men and boys 16 and older were told to stay behind and find their own way.

"Fear,” he said. “How are we going to make it out of here alive?"

Mustafic was just young enough to join his mother and siblings and eventually made it out.

His, father had to stay behind.

“Okay my dad is coming, I know he's coming. He’s going to make it,” he said. “A week goes by, a second week goes by then you start to lose hope.”

His father never made it and is one of thousands to die in the massacre at Srebrenica.

“In 1995 the world said never again,” he said. “Never forget. Let’s never let that happen again, but we keep failing at that. We got to try harder.

© 2017 KTVB-TV


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