THE HAGUE, NETHERLANDS – Former Bosnian Serb army commander Ratko Mladic is to appeal his life sentence, his son said Wednesday, calling the judgment by a U.N. court “war propaganda.”
“This sentence is unjust and contrary to the facts and we will fight it on appeal to prove that this judgment is wrong,” Darko Mladic told reporters.
He was speaking shortly after his father was found guilty of 10 charges, including genocide and war crimes in the 1990s Balkans conflict in Bosnia in which 100,000 people died and 2.2 million were displaced.
“Today justice has been replaced by war propaganda,” Darko Mladic said.
Flanked by Mladic’s defense team, Mladic junior read a statement from his father “whom I’ve spoken to 10 minutes ago.”
His father told him “this is a lie. This is not a court. This is a NATO commission,” Darko Mladic said.
“They are trying to criminalize a legal Serbian endeavor in times of civil war,” Mladic told his son.
Defense lawyer Dragan Ivetic told journalists the defense believed the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) did not take Mladic’s health issues into consideration.
“Today the medical warnings of Mr. Mladic’s risk of death fell on deaf ears,” Ivetic said.
“It is certain that we will file an appeal,” he added.
“Irrespective of what you think of Mr. Ratko Mladic, he is a human being and has the basic rights to be treated as a human being,” Ivetic said.
Said Darko Mladic: “My father is not the monster you would like to portray him in history. History, as you know, is written by the victors,” he said.
“Serbians will never accept this tribunal as impartial,” another lawyer Branko Lukic said.