The charges against Ratko Mladic
The Hague - Bosnian Serb wartime army chief Ratko Mladic is charged with some of the worst atrocities committed in Europe since World War II.
The former general risks life in jail on charges of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes for his role in the bloody 1992-95 Bosnian war.
Mladic is charged with genocide for allegedly masterminding the 1995 Srebrenica massacre of about 8 000 Muslim men and boys over a six-day period in July 1995 - Europe's biggest single bloodbath since the Nazi extermination of Jews.
Srebrenica had been a UN-protected enclave where thousands of Muslims sought refuge from Serb attack, but Serb forces overran lightly-armed UN peacekeepers, separating the female population from the males, whom they executed.
The massacre is the sole event in the Balkans war to have been ruled as genocide by the International Criminal Tribunal for former Yugoslavia (ICTY), a finding confirmed by the UN's highest court, the International Court of Justice.
Mladic is charged with responsibility for the 44-month siege of Sarajevo that started in May 1992 and claimed about 10 000 lives. Forces under his command allegedly conducted a campaign of "terror" against the city's civilian population, primarily through shelling and sniping.
"People were injured and killed, even inside their own homes, hit by bullets targeted through their windows," states a prosecution document. "The attacks ... were designed to keep the inhabitants in a constant state of terror."
The prosecution accuses Mladic of complicity in a joint criminal enterprise whose objective was the "elimination" of Muslims and Croats from large areas of Bosnia-Hercegovina in pursuit of a "Greater Serbia".
Among the charges of war crimes and crimes against humanity feature counts of persecution, extermination, murder, deportation, inhumane acts, cruel treatment and attacks on civilians.
He is also charged for men under his command taking more than 200 UN peacekeepers and military observers hostage, keeping them in strategic locations as a protection from Nato air strikes.