The reality of a genocide in Srebrenica officially recognized

Press release

The FIDH andits member organisation in Serbia, Center for Peace and Democracy Development(CPDD)welcome the decision
of the ICJ on the complaint of Bosnia-Herzegovina against Serbia, the recognition of the reality of a genocide in Srebrenica and the application of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide.

On February 26, 2007, for the first time since the ratification of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, the International Court of Justice recognized that a genocide has been committed. It qualifies as such the massacre of nearly 8,000 Bosnian Muslims in Srebrenica in July 1995 by Bosnian Serbs. This decision confirms the jurisprudence of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY).

The complaint was filed by Bosnia-Herzegovina against the former Federal Republic of Yugoslavia in 1993, accusing Serbia of masterminding the widespread "ethnic cleansing" of Bosnian Muslims and Croats during the 1992-95 war and demanding reparation for victims. The ICJ judgment cleared the state of Serbia of direct responsibility in the commission of acts of genocide and of any complicity of genocide during the war in Bosnia. However, the ICJ recognized that Serbia has breached its international obligation to prevent the Srebrenica massacre and to prosecute and sanction the perpetrators.

The ICJ ruling stressed that Serbia failed to comply with its duty to punish or to extradite those responsible for the massacre. Moreover the ICJ insists that Serbia had the obligation to “take effective steps to ensure full compliance under the (Genocide) Convention”, which includes the obligation to transfer individuals accused of genocide to the ICTY, including Ratko Mladic, commander of the former Bosnian Serb Army, and to co-operate fully with the Tribunal.

FIDH and CPDD strongly urge the Serbian authorities to transfer without any further delay
Ratko Mladic, as well as others requested by the ICTY, to the Tribunal.

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