Institute for War and Peace Reporting | Giving Voice, Driving Change

Tribunal Upholds Case Referral Ruling

(TU No 467, 11-Sep-06)
Mitar Rasevic and Savo Todovic, who were guards at a prison camp in Foca from 1992 until 1994, are charged with the persecution, murder, torture, illegal imprisonment and enslavement of Bosnian Muslims and Croats during that period.

On July 8 last year, the judges ruled that the case should be referred to Bosnia because of the relatively low rank of the accused. The tribunal is under pressure to wrap up its cases by 2010 and is moving all but the highest-profile trials to national courts in the former Yugoslavia.

Rasevic and Todovic appealed against the decision, claiming that a Bosnian court might not give them a fair trial, and demanded that their case be transferred to Serbia instead.

The Appeals Chamber has now dismissed their arguments as unfounded, and ruled that the two accused should be transferred to Bosnia within 30 days.

So far, the tribunal has referred five cases against nine indictees to Bosnia, and one case against two indictees to Croatia.