SARAJEVO, Bosnia-Herzegovina (AP) — A Bosnian court on Thursday sentenced a man to six years in prison on charges that he fought for the Islamic State group in Syria.
Jasmin Keserovic, a Bosniak who has spent nearly seven years in Syria, was also charged with inciting others to take part in terrorist activities.
Bosniaks are one of the three main ethnicities living in the Balkan state. The others are Bosnian Serbs and Bosnian Croats. Bosniaks are primarily Muslims.
Judges said that by publicly calling on Muslims to kill Christian soldiers and civilians alike, the defendant “demonstrated specific ruthlessness.”
Hudges rejected defense claims that Keserovic was in Syria for charity work to help the local population amid the war.
He was part of a group of seven Bosniak men flown back to Bosnia from Syria on a U.S. Air Force flight in December 2019 along with 18 women and children.
In 2014, Bosnia became the first country in Europe to introduce prison terms for its citizens who fought abroad. Fighters who have since returned to the country were tried and, in most cases, sentenced to prison.