Serbia’s war crimes court in Belgrade has jailed nine men but acquitted two other members of a paramilitary group that ran amok during the Kosovo conflict in 1999.
The men received prison terms of between two and twenty years, verdicts thought too lenient by some observers and families of victims. The prosecutor will be appealing against the acquittals.
“This verdict shows that different winds are blowing here and that everyone who had blood on their hands will be punished for the crimes they committed,” said Deputy War Crimes Prosecutor Bruno Vekaric.
The guilty men were all members of the notorious “Jackals” group held responsible for the deaths of more than 120 civilians.
Cuska was one of four villages targeted by the gang when it went on its killing spree. A memorial plaque honours the dead, but some of the houses used for the mass killings are still bricked up, visited occasionally by some rare survivor, telling the terrible story to his younger relatives.