The retired general who commanded Dutch peacekeepers in the Bosnian enclave of Srebrenica when Bosnian Serb fighters overran the town and massacred some 8,000 Muslim men won’t be prosecuted, authorities in the Netherlands have announced.
Relatives of three victims of the worst massacre in Europe since the Second World War wanted General Thom Karremans held criminally responsible for their deaths, arguing that he turned them over to the Serbs when he should have offered them protection because they had worked for the peacekeepers.
Prosecutors said yesterday that Karremans and two other senior Dutch officers “cannot be held liable under criminal law for having been involved in the crimes committed by the Bosnian Serbian army in July 1995 in Srebrenica.”
The massacre and the Dutch peacekeepers’ involvement in it has been a national trauma for the Netherlands, which has long prided itself on offering protection to endangered minorities. A national government resigned en masse after a critical report in 2002.