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Serbian Court Clears Suspect Of U.S. Embassy Arson, Convicts Him Of Theft

September 20, 2012

by RFE/RL's Balkan Service

A Serbian court has cleared a man of charges that he'd set fire to the U.S. Embassy during anti-Western riots in Belgrade in 2008.

But the Belgrade court sentenced him to one year in prison for stealing property from the embassy.

A judge said there was no evidence that Milan Zivanovic, a university student, was among the crowd that set the embassy ablaze on February 21, 2008, during the Belgrade riots that followed Kosovo's unilateral declaration of independence from Serbia.

But the judge convicted Zivanovic of stealing a leather jacket and gloves that belonged to a U.S. Embassy employee.

One person died and embassies of several Western states that supported Kosovo's split from Serbia were damaged in the riots.

Based on reporting by dpa and AP


Copyright (c) 2012. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

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