How did Radoslav Brdjanin die? Freed Bosnian Serb War Criminal Cause of death

How did Radoslav Brđanin die? Freed Bosnian Serb War Criminal Cause of death

According to the health institution, Radoslav Brdjanin, a Hague prisoner, died on September 7 at the University Clinical Center (UCC) of the Bosnian entity of Republika Srpska (RS) in Banja Luka, according to the health institution.

Due to his poor health, the man from Bra was released early on September 3 after serving 23 years of his sentence for war crimes in the area of Bosnian Krajina.

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War Criminal Radoslav Brdjanin passed away

War Criminal Radoslav Brđanin passed away

Radoslav Brdjanin, the wartime leader of a Serb-run rebel territory in Bosnia and Herzegovina known as the Autonomous Region of Krajina, died at the age of 74, just days after his release from prison.

Radoslav Brdjanin Cause of death

Radoslav Brdjanin, a convicted war criminal, died on Wednesday in a hospital in Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina, after being admitted earlier in the week with signs of multiple organ failure.

Radoslav Brđanin Cause of death

Brdjanin was hospitalized shortly after returning to Bosnia and Herzegovina. After serving 23 years of a 30-year prison sentence for crimes against humanity, he was granted early release.

Who was Radoslav Brdjanin?

Radoslav Brdjanin was a Bosnian Serb political leader and war criminal who lived from 9 February 1948 to 7 September 2022.

The International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia sentenced him to 32 years in prison in 2004 for crimes committed during the Bosnian War. On appeal in 2008, the sentence he served in Denmark was reduced by two years.

The early life of Radoslav Brdjanin

On February 9, 1948, he was born in elinac, SR Bosnia Herzegovina, Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. He was a civil engineer by trade and worked in the building trade until 1990. Given the difficulty of maintaining Yugoslavia’s unity at the time, certain regions in Bosnia and Herzegovina began to organize themselves into regional structures based on the concept of Municipality Assemblies, which existed under the 1974 Yugoslavian Constitution.

The Municipal Assembly of Bosanska Krajina was established in April and May 1991 in Banja Luka. Bránin was the organization’s first vice president.

War crimes of Radoslav Brdjanin

On 9 January 1992, the Serbian Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina was declared, and on 12 August 1992, it was renamed the Republika Srpska. The SDS leaders believed that the large Bosniak and Croatian populations living in the zones they claimed as part of the Serbian Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina posed a significant barrier to the establishment of their State.

As a result, the establishment of this State and the protection of its borders implied, over time, the complete evacuation, or “ethnic cleansing,” of virtually all Bosnian Bosniaks and Croats. 

Crisis groups were formed to serve as coordination and execution organs for the main elements of the plan’s operational phase, as well as to take over the administration of the regions and municipalities. On May 5, 1992, the Autonomous Region of Krajina (ARK) Crisis Staff was established, with Brdjanin as its President. Bránin played a pivotal role in the campaign to establish an ethnically pure Serb state.

His position allowed him to facilitate ethnic cleansing by concentrating all instruments of State power (media, central administration, housing authority, health service, police, legal system, means of production, and employment) in the hands of the ruling bodies and those committed to an ethnically pure Serb State. He allegedly signed the ARK Crisis Staff’s decisions and orders, which instructed and compelled the municipal Crisis Staff to take action. Certain members of these cells were directly involved in the alleged crimes of persecution, deportation, murder, torture, and destruction.

Bránin was apprehended by the SFOR on July 6, 1999, and transferred to the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia the following day.

Judgment and conviction of Radoslav Brdjanin

On July 12, 1999, Bránin made his first appearance before the ICTY. He pleaded not guilty to all twelve charges brought against him, including genocide and extermination. The ICTY Trial Chamber was convinced beyond a reasonable doubt that, during the period covered by the Indictment and prior to that, Banin was a leading political figure in the ARK and held key positions. He was an important political figure at all three levels of Bosnian Serb leadership: municipal, regional, and republic.

The Trial Chamber was satisfied that Banin shared with the Bosnian Serb leadership support for the Strategic Plan, which aimed to connect Serb-populated areas in BiH, seize control of these areas, and establish a separate Bosnian Serb state from which most non-Serbs would be permanently expelled. The ICTY emphasized that he was aware that the Strategic Plan could only be implemented through the use of force and fear.
Bránin was sentenced to 32 years in prison by the ICTY Trial Chamber on September 1, 2004. On the basis of his individual criminal responsibility, the Tribunal found him guilty of the following counts:

  • Atrocities against humanity
  • Serious violations of the 1949 Geneva Conventions
  • Violations of war laws or customs

Bránin filed an appeal against this decision on September 22, 2004. On 3 April 2007, the Appeals Chamber overturned the Trial Chamber’s finding that Branin’s conduct had a significant impact on the commission of torture in detention camps due to a lack of evidence. In addition, the Appeals Chamber overturned Branin’s conviction for wanton destruction of cities, towns, or villages, or devastation not justified by military necessity, insofar as it relates to the municipality of Bosanska Krupa. The Appeals Chamber reduced Branin’s sentence by two years due to the reduction in convictions. On March 4, 2008, he was transferred to Denmark to serve his sentence.

Release from the prison of Radoslav Brdjanin

Bránin’s application for early release was denied in 2020 due to the seriousness of his offenses and his failure to demonstrate sufficient rehabilitation. Branin was released early on health grounds on September 3, 2022, after serving two-thirds of his 30-year prison sentence.

Branin was admitted to the University Clinical Centre in Banja Luka’s intensive care unit a few days after his arrival due to a deteriorating general state of health. He passed away on September 7, 2022.

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