THE HAGUE - The International Court of Justice on Monday said in a landmark ruling that the 1995 massacre of nearly 8,000 Bosnian Muslims in Srebrenica was genocide, confirming an earlier ruling by the UN war crimes court for the former Yugoslavia.
“The court concludes ... there were acts of genocide committed by members of the Bosnian Serb army (in Srebrenica),” said ICJ president Rosalyn Higgins.
It is the first time that the ICJ, the UN’s top court, has ruled that an event was genocide, which was made an international crime under a 1948 treaty.
However, in the same ruling the court also said that the mass killings in other parts of Bosnia during the 1992-95 war did not constitute genocide.
“The court finds it has not been established by (Bosnia) that the killings amounted to genocide,” Higgins said.
The court is reading out a landmark judgement in the case of Bosnia, which has accused Serbia of masterminding the widespread “ethnic cleansing” of Bosnian Muslims and Croats during the 1992-95 war, saying it amounted to genocide.
In its ruling the court said that Serbia “was making considerable military and financial support available to the (Bosnian Serb entity) Republika Srpska” during the Bosnian war but did not make any immediate comment about specific involvement in genocide.