ICTY prosecutor rejects Serbia documents secrecy deal allegations

[JURIST] The Office of the Prosecutor (OTP) for the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) [official website; JURIST news archive] Monday publicly rejected allegations that it had negotiated or sought a deal with Belgrade officials to conceal documents relating to the case of Bosnia and Herzegovina v. Serbia and Montenegro [ICJ docket; JURIST report] in the International Court of Justice. Last week former ICTY prosecutor Geoffrey Nice sent a letter to the Zagreb daily Jutarnji List accusing [B92 report] Chief ICTY Prosecutor Carla Del Ponte [official profile] of striking a deal with former Serbian Foreign Minister Goran Svilanovic [Wikipedia profile] to apply protective measures based on national security to the country's Supreme Defense Council archive of documents. According to Nice, the prosecutors in the case against former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic [JURIST news archive] never gained access to the documents because of the deal. Nice said that the deal allowed Serbia to escape direct responsibility for genocide. His letter echoed an earlier report [JURIST report] in the New York Times. The OTP rejected such claims Monday, saying the International Court of Justice (ICJ) [official website] never requested the documents and asserted that the OTP has no control over which documents are granted protection for national security.

The ICJ ruled [press release] in February that during the 1992-1995 Bosnian war [Wikipedia backgrounder], Serbia failed to meet its obligations under the 1948 Genocide Convention [text] to prevent genocide, but was not itself directly responsible for genocide. The OTP has more.



 

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