|(Exclusively for the use of the media. Not an official document)
The Hague, 5 July 2006
The Tribunal yesterday rendered its decision to refer the case against Pasko Ljubicic to the State Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The accused is to be transferred within the next 30 days.
Ljubicic is charged with crimes committed against Bosnian Muslim civilians in the Lasva Valley in central Bosnia and Herzegovina between January and July 1993. It is alleged that as commander of the 4th Military Police Battalion of the Croatian Defence Council, the accused, together with troops under his control, conducted a number of attacks on the town of Vitez and neighbouring
villages in the spring of 1993 and that during these attacks, they killed more than 100 Bosnian Muslim civilians, detained and abused many more and destroyed Muslim property, including two mosques in the village of Ahmici.
Ljubicic is charged with persecutions, murder, violence to life and person, devastation not justified by military necessity, destruction or wilful damage to institutions dedicated to religion or education, plunder of public or private property and cruel treatment.
The Tribunal's Referral Bench ruled on 12 April 2006 that the case be referred to Bosnia and Herzegovina under the terms of Rule 11bis of the Tribunal's Rules of Procedure and Evidence. The defence appealed the decision on 9 May 2006. In today's ruling, the Appeals Chamber dismissed all of Ljubicic's grounds of appeal and affirmed the decision to refer the case to the State Court
of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
A partnership with the judiciaries in the former Yugoslavia is a key component of the Tribunal's Completion Strategy. While the most senior leaders are tried before the ICTY, intermediate and lower rank accused may be referred to competent national jurisdictions. The ICTY has to date transferred six accused to Bosnia and Herzegovina for trial and referred one case involving two
accused to Croatia.
The entire text of the decision can be found at:
Courtroom proceedings can be followed on the Tribunal's website at www.un.org/icty.