Croatian General’s Appeal Causes Turbulence for Balkan Reconciliation

Croatian General’s Appeal Causes Turbulence for Balkan Reconciliation

After a successful appeal at a United Nations tribunal, Croatian national hero Gen. Ante Gotovina, who led a 1995 offensive to retake a region of Croatia from Serbian militant control, was acquitted of war crimes last week.

The International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia reversed the convictions of war crimes and crimes against humanity against Gotovina and Mladen Markac, a more junior general.

Gotovina’s conviction in 2011 had dealt a blow to the image of Croatians as victims, rather than perpetrators, of the atrocities committed during the breakup of Yugoslavia. The successful appeal now provides Serbs with another example of what they see as evidence of continued bias against them in the courts.

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