In an ending befitting a Shakespeare tragedy, former Bosnian Croat general Slobodan Praljak publicly killed himself by drinking poison, after being convicted of war crimes by the International Criminal Tribunal.
Praljak and other generals led a genocidal campaign against Muslims in 1990s Yugoslavia, with the aim of creating an ethnically homogenous Bosnian Croat state. The Hague-based tribunal today upheld his conviction of 20 years imprisonment for war crimes. Days earlier, the same court had condemned Ratko Mladic, a Serbian general responsible for the Srebrenica massacre, which killed more than 7,000 Bosnian Muslims.
“Judges, Slobodan Praljak is not a war criminal,” Praljak declared. “With disdain, I reject this verdict.” He then drank from a vial, saying, “What I drank was poison.”
Video cameras in the court captured the astounding scene:
Praljak died shortly after.