ICJ rejects both genocide lawsuits

The International Court of Justice (ICJ) has rejected Croatia's lawsuit accusing Serbia of committing genocide in its territory from 1991 until 1995.

Source: B92, Beta, Tanjug
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The Hague-based court has found that Croatia did not prove that genocide was committed, Court President Petr Tomka announced.

Tomak said the ICJ was in agreement with the conclusions of the Hague Tribunal, which said the goal of Serb units was "to forcibly remove Croats from parts of the territory, but not to physically destroy them."

The court also rejected Serbia's counter lawsuit, announcing that "even if it was proven that Croatia's leaders had the intention of removing the Serb population from the Croatian territory, there is no proof that the goal was their physical destruction."

Earlier, Tomak read that Serbia cannot be held responsible for acts committed prior to April 27, 1992, when the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (SRJ, FRY) of which Serbia was a part, joined the UN and signed the Convention on the Prevention of Genocide.

This excluded the part of the Croatian lawsuit referring to war crimes committed in Vukovar in 1991.

The ruling today marks the end of a court process that has lasted for 16 years. Croatia in 1999 filed its lawsuit against Sebria, while Serbia responded ten years later, charging Croatia of committing genocide against ethnic Serbs there during and after Operation Storm in 1995.

The ICJ ruling is final and cannot be appealed, and the countries will have an obligation to adhere to it.

Download the summary of the ICJ judgment

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