Australia’s new prime minister announces his Cabinet

Incoming Australian Prime Minister, Scott Morrison is sworn in at Government House, Canberra, Thursday, Aug. 24, 2018. (AP)
Updated 26 August 2018
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Australia’s new prime minister announces his Cabinet

  • Morrison won a ballot of government lawmakers for the leadership on Friday against rival Peter Dutton
  • The fractured conservative coalition government needs to present a united front to voters ahead of elections due by May

CANBERRA: Australia’s new prime minister announced a peace-making Cabinet on Sunday that does not punish his rivals in a bruising power struggle that ousted his predecessor days ago and divided a government that lags in opinion polls.
The fractured conservative coalition government needs to present a united front to voters ahead of elections due by May.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison won a ballot of government lawmakers for the leadership on Friday against rival Peter Dutton.
Morrison had been loyal to his predecessor, Malcolm Turnbull, whom Dutton had demanded prove he had the support of ruling Liberal Party lawmakers in a ballot. Turnbull resigned.
Morrison, who last week was the treasurer, returned Dutton to the home affairs ministry he had held under Turnbull.
Mathias Cormann, a party power broker who backed Dutton, retained his finance portfolio.
Australia’s first female foreign minister, Julie Bishop, announced earlier Sunday that she had quit the Cabinet.
The 62-year-old Bishop had had been deputy leader of the ruling party since 2007 and failed to become prime minister in Friday’s leadership ballot.
Opposition lawmaker Penny Wong paid tribute to Bishop for her trailblazing role in foreign affairs.
Bishop will be replaced as foreign minister by Marise Payne, Australia’s first female defense minister.


Bosnians welcome UN verdict against Karadzic

Updated 42 min 53 sec ago
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Bosnians welcome UN verdict against Karadzic

  • ‘He should never be allowed to go free,’ Bosnian diplomat tells Arab News
  • Families of victims who traveled to The Hague hailed the verdict

JEDDAH: Former Bosnian-Serb leader Radovan Karadzic, widely known as the “Butcher of Bosnia,” has had his sentence for genocide and war crimes increased to life in prison.

He was appealing a 2016 verdict in which he was given a 40-year sentence for the Srebrenica massacre in the 1992-95 Bosnian war.

More than 8,000 Muslim men and boys were killed in the town of Srebrenica by Bosnian-Serb forces in July 1995. Karadzic, 73, was also found guilty of war crimes and crimes against humanity. 

The UN court said the 40-year sentence did not reflect the trial chamber’s analysis on the “gravity and responsibility for the largest and greatest set of crimes ever attributed to a single person at the ICTY (the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia).”

The ruling by the judges on Wednesday cannot be appealed, and will end one of the highest-profile legal battles stemming from the Balkan wars.

Karadzic showed almost no reaction as presiding Judge Vagn Joensen of Denmark read out the damning judgment.

The former leader is one of the most senior figures tried by The Hague’s war crimes court. His case is considered as key in delivering justice for the victims of the Bosnian conflict, which left more than 100,000 people dead and millions homeless.

Joensen said the trial chamber was wrong to impose a sentence of just 40 years, given what he called the “sheer scale and systematic cruelty” of Karadzic’s crimes. Applause broke out in the public gallery as Joensen passed the new sentence.

Families of victims who traveled to The Hague hailed the verdict. Mothers, some elderly and walking with canes, wept with apparent relief after watching the ruling read on a screen in Srebrenica.

Halim Grabus, a Bosnian-Muslim diplomat based in Geneva, told Arab News that the verdict “will act as a deterrent against the criminals responsible for the genocide of Muslims during the 1992-1995 war. He (Karadzic) should never be allowed to go free. He deserves maximum punishment.”

Grabus was in Bosnia during the war, and witnessed the scorched-earth policy of Karadzic and his fellow generals.

Grabus said it was not possible in today’s world to expect total justice, “but the verdict is important for the victims and survivors of Karadzic’s genocidal politics and ideology of hate.” 

A large majority of Serbs “continue to justify what he did, and continue to carry forward his hateful campaign against Bosnian Muslims,” Grabus added.

“Many of the killers of Muslims during the Bosnian war are still roaming free. They need to be arrested and brought to justice.”

Ratko Mladic, a Bosnian-Serb wartime military commander, is awaiting an appeal judgment of his genocide and war crimes conviction, which earned him a life sentence. Both he and Karadzic were convicted of genocide for their roles in the Srebrenica massacre.