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Dutch blamed for some Srebrenica massacre deaths

Thursday, July 17, 2014 - 01:26

The Netherlands is 'responsible' for about 300 Srebrenica massacre victims out of more than 8,000 deaths, a Dutch court has ruled. Paul Chapman reports.

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PLEASE NOTE: EDIT CONTAINS MATERIAL THAT WAS ORIGINALLY 4:3 More than 8, 000 Muslim men and boys died in the Srebrenica massacre nearly two decades ago. About 300 of the victims were handed over to Bosnian-Serb forces by Dutch peacekeepers. Now a district court in the Netherlands has ruled the Dutch state is responsible for those 300 or so deaths. The court in the Hague said the troops should have known what would happen to those who'd sought refuge at their base. (SOUNDBITE)(English) PETER BLOK, JUDGE AND COURT SPOKESMAN, SAYING: "At the moment that the men were sent away the Dutchbat knew or should have known that the genocide was taking place and therefore there was a serious risk that those men would be killed." The same court cleared the Netherlands of blame for the other victims who'd fled into the forests surrounding Srebrenica. Lawyers for the Mothers of Srebrenica group which brought the case say the ruling is at least a step forward. (SOUNDBITE)(English) MARCO GERRITSEN, LAWYER FOR MOTHERS OF SREBRENICA, SAYING: "Partly we are satisfied because that means that the group of relatives is now much broader than only the three men as the verdict has been before, so for approximately 3-400 persons this will mean that the Dutch state is liable." The Mothers of Srebrenica group says its battle for justice nearly 20 years after Europe's worst massacre since World War Two is still far from over.

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Dutch blamed for some Srebrenica massacre deaths

Thursday, July 17, 2014 - 01:26