Britain says ex-Bosnian Serb wartime leader Karadzic to serve jail term in UK

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Former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic appears before the Appeals Chamber of the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals ("Mechanism") ruling on a appeal of his 40 year sentence for war crimes in The Hague

LONDON (Reuters) -Britain said on Wednesday it had agreed former Bosnian Serb political leader Radovan Karadzic, convicted of war crimes during the Balkan conflict of the 1990s, should be transferred to a British prison to serve the rest of his sentence.

Karadzic, 75, was sentenced to 40 years in prison in 2016 after being convicted of genocide for the July 1995 Srebrenica massacre of more than 8,000 Muslim men and boys by Bosnian Serb forces. In 2019, U.N. judges at The Hague extended the jail term to a life sentence.

"Radovan Karadzic is one of the few people to have been found guilty of genocide. He was responsible for the massacre of men, women and children at the Srebrenica genocide and helped prosecute the siege of Sarajevo with its remorseless attacks on civilians," said British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab.

"We should take pride in the fact that, from UK support to secure his arrest, to the prison cell he now faces, Britain has supported the 30 year pursuit of justice for these heinous crimes," he said in a statement.

As well as genocide, Karadzic was found guilty of war crimes and crimes against humanity for the 44-month Serb siege of the Bosnian capital Sarajevo and for overseeing a campaign of ethnic cleansing that drove Croats and Muslims out of Serb-claimed areas of Bosnia.

In hiding for over a decade after the war, he was arrested and handed over to the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia in July 2008. After his conviction he was held at court's detention centre in The Hague.

(Reporting by Michael Holden, editing by Elizabeth Piper)

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