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Indictment at the Hague: The Milosevic Regime and Crimes of the Balkan Wars

NCJ Number
Norman Cigar; Paul Williams
Date Published
339 pages
This book provides a detailed examination of the conduct of the Milosevic regime in Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina and the individual responsibility of senior members of its leadership for war crimes in those countries, followed by an account of the international investigation and trial that brought them to justice.
Following a decade of war waged by the Milosevic regime in which Serbian forces committed atrocities against civilians as part of a systematic campaign to secure territory for an ethnically "pure" Serb state, the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia issued a series of indictments against Milosevic. He was subsequently extradited to The Hague to stand trial. The indictment charged Milosevic with "crimes against humanity, grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions and violations of the laws or customs of war," as well as with the commission of "genocide." The indictments issued by the Tribunal are a confirmation of the validity of the legal argument and evidence presented in this book. The book constitutes a detailed case study that defines the nature and legal responsibility of a regime in the commission of war crimes and analyzes the legal and evidentiary facets of the investigation and prosecution that formed the basis of the Milosevic's indictment. Of particular value, both to the layperson as well as the scholar or practitioner of international law, are the documents in the second part of the book. They consist of reports and studies prepared under the sponsorship of the United Nations during the course of the war. These documents not only set the case for the prosecution of war crimes in its historical context, but also constitute a revealing record of the international community's indifference toward or complicity in the devastation, death, and suffering inflicted on the people of Bosnia.