Agius rejects Karadzic’s Request to disqualify the Judges


The President of the International Mechanism for Criminal Courts Carmel Agius rejected the request of war criminal Radovan Karadzic to disqualify judges from the process of reviewing the disputed decision of the Appeals Chamber, as well as the appeal of the Mechanism’s decision on earlier appeal against the verdict.

The statement, signed by Agius, states that Karadzic did not draw attention to a clear mistake in the explanation of the disputed decision, and that because of that, its review was not approved. Adjius recalls that the impugned decision speaks of Karadzic’s attempt to separate his case from the others, but did not provide an explanation, only mentioned earlier arguments without showing any error in the impugned decision, and that he appealed the Appeals Chamber’s decision on an earlier appeal which the President rejected without waiting for a response from the Prosecution.

On October 29th last year, the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals Council has refused to consider a request by the defense of former Republika Srpska President Radovan Karadzic, who has been sentenced to life imprisonment for genocide and other crimes in BiH, related to the annulment of earlier decisions due to the perceived bias of judges.

The decision, signed by Judge Burton Hall, states that the presiding panel does not have jurisdiction to deal with the disqualification of the former and current President of the Mechanism, Theodore Meron and Carmel Agius.

“Radovan Karadzic’s efforts to propagate allegations of bias in order to reach his desired decision must be rejected, and his lawyer should refrain from making such submissions before the Mechanism,” was stated in the decision.

It is not yet known in which state war criminal Radovan Karadzic will endure the life imprisonment on which he was sentenced on March 20ththis year by a decision of the Appeals Chamber of the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals, was confirmed for Avaz from The Hague.

It was stated earlier that Karadzic could serve sentence in the UN member states such as Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Estonia, Great Britain, Belgium, Germany, Poland, France, Austria, Italy, Spain and Portugal.

The President of the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals Carmel Agius will decide where war criminal Radovan Karadzic will endure life imprisonment.

Radovan Karadzic will not have the right to appeal.

Radovan Karadžić was charged with two counts of genocide, five counts of crimes against humanity, and four counts of violations of the laws or customs of war committed by Serb forces during the armed conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina (“BiH”), from 1992 until 1995.

On 24 March 2016, Trial Chamber III of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (“ICTY”) convicted Karadžić of genocide in the area of Srebrenica in 1995 and of persecution, extermination, murder, deportation, inhumane acts (forcible transfer), terror, unlawful attacks on civilians, and hostage-taking. He was acquitted of the charge of genocide in other municipalities in BiH.

The Trial Chamber found that Karadžić committed these crimes through his participation in four joint criminal enterprises (“JCE”s): (i) the JCE to permanently remove Bosnian Muslims and Bosnian Croats from Bosnian Serb-claimed territory through the commission of crimes in municipalities throughout BiH; (ii) the JCE to spread terror among the civilian population of Sarajevo through a campaign of sniping and shelling; (iii) the JCE with the common purpose of taking UN personnel hostage in order to compel NATO to abstain from conducting air strikes against Bosnian Serb targets; and (iv) the JCE to eliminate the Bosnian Muslims from Srebrenica in July 1995. The Trial Chamber also found Karadžić responsible as a superior in relation to certain crimes committed by his subordinates in Srebrenica in 1995.

Following the rendering of the Trial Judgement, and in accordance with Article 2 of the Mechanism’s Transitional Arrangements, the Mechanism assumed jurisdiction for the appeals proceedings in the Prosecutor v. Radovan Karadžić case. Both Karadžić and the Prosecution appealed the Trial Judgement, filing their respective notices of appeal on 22 July 2016, their appeal briefs on 5 December 2016, their response briefs on 15 March 2017, and their reply briefs on 6 April 2017.  The appeal hearing took place on 23 and 24 April 2018 at the Mechanism’s Hague branch.

The initial indictment against Karadžić was confirmed on 25 July 1995. He was arrested in Serbia on 21 July 2008, and transferred to the ICTY on 30 July 2008. The trial commenced on 26 October 2009 and 586 in-court testimonies were heard by the Trial Chamber.

The Trial Chamber sentenced Karadžić to life imprisonment.

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