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Dragan Zelenović transferred to Belgium to serve sentence

Press Release
(Exclusively for the use of the media. Not an official document)

The Hague, 27 February 2008

Dragan Zelenović transferred to Belgium to serve sentence

Dragan Zelenović, a former Bosnian Serb soldier, was today transferred to Belgium to serve his 15 year sentence of imprisonment for torture and rape of women and girls in the town of Foča in Bosnia and Herzegovina during 1992.   

On 17 January 2007, Zelenović pleaded guilty to seven counts of rape, including gang rape, and torture of women and girls, one of them merely 15 years old, following the take over of Foča municipality by Serb forces in April 1992.  Serb forces took women and girls to detention facilities for interrogation. During their detention the women and girls were subjected to humiliating and degrading conditions of life, brutal beatings and to sexual assaults, including rapes. Besides these places of detention, several women were detained in houses and apartments used as brothels, operated by groups of soldiers, mostly paramilitary. Zelenović and other soldiers gang-raped several women during or immediately after their interrogation.

In his statement of guilt Zelenović said: “I feel sorry for all the victims who were victimized by anything that I did, and that is why I express from this forum my deepest remorse and regret.”       

Zelenović appealed the Trial Chamber’s ruling but on 31 October 2007 the Appeals Chamber affirmed the 15 year sentence against him.

A case information sheet providing an overview of the case can be found on the Tribunal’s website at: http://www.icty.org/x/cases/zelenovic/cis/en/cis_zelenovic_en.pdf

The ICTY has convicted three persons for the rape and torture of women and girls in Foča and another for torture, murder and persecutions committed in the town. Three additional cases involving four accused of crimes committed in Foča were referred to the State Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina for processing.

The Tribunal indicted 161 persons for serious violations of humanitarian law committed on the territory of former Yugoslavia between 1991 and 2001. Proceedings against 111 persons have been concluded. 



Courtroom proceedings can be followed on the Tribunal’s website


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