News 08 Apr 13

Bosniak Scholars Urge New Suit Against Serbia

A group of academics have published a book demandingthe revision of an International Court of Justice verdict that cleared Serbia and Montenegro of genocide in Bosnia.

Justice Report
BIRN
Sarajevo

The authors, Ismet Alija, Hasan Balic and Avdija Kovacevic, launched the book in the town of Kiseljak on Friday with a call for the Bosnian legal authorities to prepare new evidence, present new facts and initiate a revision of the 2007 verdict that absolved Belgrade of responsibility for genocide.

“The lesson that can be derived from this book is that this issue should be put on agenda of expert discussions more often and that conditions for revising the verdict by presenting new evidence and determining new facts on the basis of those pieces of evidence should be created,” said Alija at the launch of the book entitled ‘The International Court of Justice – Bosnia and Herzegovina vs. Serbia and Montenegro’.

Bosnia and Herzegovina is the only country to have filed a suit against its neighbour at the International Court of Justice in The Hague over an alleged violation of the Convention on Prevention and Punishment of Genocide.

The court ruled in February 2007 that the massacres of more than 7,000 Bosniaks at Srebrenica did constitute “acts of genocide, committed by members of the Bosnian Serb Army”.

It found Serbia and Montenegro responsible for having violated the Convention on Genocide by failing to do all it could to prevent it and failing to punish its perpetrators or extradite them to The Hague Tribunal, but also ruled that Belgrade could not be considered responsible for genocide in Srebrenica.

“This verdict should mobilise all people whose conscience has been shaken by the crime committed in Bosnia and Herzegovina, to help us on the road to justice,” Balic argued at the book launch.

There is no right to appeal against the ruling, but a ten-year was given for revision of the verdict. The deadline expires in February 2017.

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Background

Srebrenica: Genocide Reconstructed

In July 1995 Srebrenica was shelled and occupied by the Army of Republic of Srpska,VRS, despite being declared a protected area by the United Nations. More than 7,000 people were killed, the victims of genocide.

Ratko Mladic: The Force Behind the Srebrenica Killings

The Bosnian Serb commander’s role in the genocide committed in Srebrenica is described in detail in many indictments and verdicts pronounced before local and international judicial institutions.

The Indictment Against Ratko Mladic

Indictments in 1995 and 2000, further amended in 2002 and 2010, charge the former commander of the Republika Srpska Army with genocide and other crimes.

Ratko Mladic: From Promising Officer to Bloodstained Warlord

When Mladic ordered his army to bomb the people of Sarajevo until they ‘go insane’, he revealed the murderous intentions that would culminate in the Srebrenica massacre.

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