The Hague Prosecution has asked for permission to appeal the decision to clear former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic of one of two counts of genocide.
In the motion sent to the Trial Chamber of the Hague Tribunal, ICTY, the prosecution argues that the decision to acquit Karadzic on the count of genocide in seven Bosnian municipalities in 1992 constitutes a judgment and should therefore be open to appeal.
“Unless the prosecution is permitted to appeal, this judgment will be the final outcome of the trial in relation to the genocide charge under count 1. Therefore, it necessarily affects the outcome of the trial”, says the motion by the Hague prosecution.
When it considered Karadzic’s request for acquittal, the Hague Trial Chamber established that the prosecution had presented enough evidence that could convict Karadzic on ten other counts of the indictment.
However, the Trial Chamber also ruled that the prosecutors had failed to provide sufficient evidence relating the first count of the indictment, which charged Karadzic with genocide in the municipalities of Bratunac, Foca, Kljuc, Prijedor, Sanski Most, Vlasenica and Zvornik in 1992.
The prosecution argues that the Trial Chamber made “errors of law and fact” by dropping the count 1 charge of genocide.
In its motion, the prosecution asked the Appeals Chamber to decide as quickly as possible on its request, since the “immediate resolution by the Appeals Chamber would materially advance the proceedings”.
“If the Prosecution is correct that the Trial Chamber has erred in dismissing the genocide charge in count 1, the error should be corrected now. The trial on count 1 could then proceed together with the trial on the remaining counts in the indictment, thereby avoiding a lengthy and costly retrial on count 1 at the end of the proceedings in this case,” says the motion.
Karadzic, the former president of Republika Srpska and the supreme commander of its army, denies charges of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity.
His trial started in October 2009, and the prosecution finished presenting its evidence last month. The defence will call its first witnesses in October this year.
To the media in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the arrest of Radovan Karadzic, indicted by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, ICTY, for genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity, was a true sensation, and one to be exploited day after day.
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.