Bosnia and Herzegovina v. Serbia and Montenegro

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Bosnia and Herzegovina v. Serbia and Montenegro is a landmark case handled by the International Court of Justice.

During the Bosnian War, former Yugoslavian troops stationed in Bosnia and Herzegovina committed various acts of genocide and atrocities against the Muslims and Croats that lived there (see Srebrenica massacre). They also laid siege the city of Sarajevo, the longest siege of a city in modern history.

The government of Bosnia and Herzegovina brought suit against the government of Serbia and Montenegro under the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (CPPCG).

The International Court of Justice decided ultimately on Feb. 26, 2007, that while Serbia and Montenegro were not responsible for the genocide committed, they were in violation of the CPPCG in that they did nothing to prevent the genocide from occurring and afterward did not punish the perpetrators.

This is the first time that a state has been found in violation of the CPPCG.

To deliver its decision, the court used the famous case of Nicaragua v. United States in where the International Court of Justice found that although the United States backed the Contra guerrillas, it could not be held responsible for their actions.

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