24.04.2006.

BH DEMANDS TO ICJ

Sarajevo’s agent urges the judges of the highest world court to find Serbia and Montenegro responsible for genocide and to obligate it to pay reparations to the state and citizens of BH. The court is asked to state that SaM continues to violate the Genocide Convention by failing to surrender Mladic and the other indictees

In the closing argument after two rounds of hearings, Sarajevo’s agent Sakib Softic urged the International Court of Justice to find Serbia and Montenegro responsible for genocide it committed in Bosnia and Herzegovina “through its agencies and entities”. Subsidiarily, if the court finds that SaM did not perpetrate genocide directly, BH demands that Belgrade be found responsible for complicity in genocide and/or aiding and abetting individuals, groups and entities that committed acts of genocide.

Bosnia and Herzegovina, furthermore, demands that SaM be found responsible for “conspiracy to commit genocide” and “incitement to genocide”, and for failure to prevent or punish it. Another demand to the highest world court is to state that Serbia and Montenegro continues to violate the Genocide Convention by failing to punish the perpetrators of the crimes prohibited by the Convention and for failing to surrender to the ICTY persons indicted for genocide and other crimes.

According to BH, after finding the state responsible for those violations of international law, the highest world court should in its judgment obligate Serbia and Montenegro to “take effective steps in accordance with its obligation to punish the crime of genocide” and to cooperate fully with the ICTY, surrendering all the persons indicted for genocide and other crimes prohibited by the Convention.

The judgment should also obligate Serbia and Montenegro to compensate Bosnia and Herzegovina and its citizens for the damage caused by unlawful acts. If the parties fail to reach an agreement on “the nature, form and amount of compensation” within one year of the judgment, the decision should be made by the International Court of Justice in separate proceedings. In addition to paying compensation, BH wants SaM to be compelled to furnish specific guarantees that it would not commit genocide again.

Finally, BH is asking for “a symbolic compensation, the amount to be determined by court” for the failure of the former Federal Republic of Yugoslavia to enforce the protective measures imposed in April and September 1993 by the International Court of Justice, compelling Belgrade to “do everything in its power to prevent the crimes of genocide and to ensure that such crimes are not committed by the military and paramilitary formations …. that may be under its control or have its support”.

[IMAGE]2018[/IMAGE]Before the BH agent presented the list of demands, the co-agent Van den Biesen expressed in his belief that the Bosnian side proved that genocide had been committed and that the FRY – now SaM – was responsible for it. The other side, Van den Biesen contends, did not provide any evidence to the contrary in the first round of arguments, instead persisting in denying the crimes and its responsibility for them, just as Milosevic’s regime had.

The second round of arguments by SaM representatives will begin on Tuesday, 2 May and will continue until 9 May, when the hearings will close.