Today the Appeals Chamber of the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals rendered its judgment in the case against Radovan Karadzic, confirming the guilty trial judgement and pronouncing a harsher penalty by sentencing him to life imprisonment for crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity and violations of the laws and customs of war.
“Today’s decision of the Appeals Chamber represents an important moment and hopefully offers a sense of closure for all the victims and survivors of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity in BiH. No court decision can bring back the loved ones of the survivors, but it can give some measure of redress. Concurrently, by affirming individual responsibility rather than collective guilt, the Court’s decision should bring relief to all decent people. There are no bad nations, only bad individuals,” the High Representative Valentin Inzko stated.
The High Representative acknowledged the tremendous contribution of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia and the Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals in providing truth and endeavoring to achieve justice in relation to atrocities committed during Bosnia and Herzegovina’s recent tragic history. In that context, he called on all authorities and political leaders in BiH to refrain from resorting to political posturing or trying to discredit the important work done by these international tribunals. The Tribunal was established by the UN Security Council in a unanimous vote. The decisions of the Tribunal must be respected.
“It is time for the politicians and citizens of Bosnia and Herzegovina to respect the past, but also to turn a new page, look towards the future, reconcile and rebuild trust among peoples in BiH. This is a prerequisite for the country and its people to move forward,” concluded the High Representative.