Compensation to Kosovo Albanians for human rights violations

Compensation to Kosovo Albanians for human rights violations

Fond_Logo_200_200The First Basic Court in Belgrade passed two judgments ordering the Republic of Serbia to pay compensation to six Kosovo Albanians from Glogovac, in amounts ranging from 125,000 to 370,000 dinars, because of Serbia’s responsibility for torture and unlawful detention committed by members of the Ministry of the Interior (MoI). Although the judgments established the right to compensation for violations of basic human rights, the Humanitarian Law Center (HLC) emphasizes that the amounts awarded are unjustifiably low and the rationale of the judgments indicates the intention of reducing the state’s responsibility for the widespread torture against Kosovo Albanians in 1999. The HLC lawyers have filed appeals for the judgments to the Court of Appeal in Belgrade.

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On the occasion of 20 years since “Storm”: Victims have to become the responsibility of the society and institutions of Serbia and Croatia

On the occasion of 20 years since “Storm”:  Victims have to become the responsibility of the society and institutions of Serbia and Croatia

Fond_Logo_200_200The 20th anniversary of the Croatian military-police Operation “Storm” will be marked on Tuesday, 4 August 2015. During the operation, the Croatian military forces committed serious and widespread crimes against the Serbs living in the area of the so-called Republic of Serbian Krajina. Even after 20 years since the crimes were committed, justice for the victims of these crimes has not been achieved, and both Croatian and Serbian institutions are responsible. Both countries have a legal and moral obligation in the future to change the attitude towards the legacy of crimes committed during “Storm”, and to demonstrate that the caring for the victims and prosecution of the persons responsible for the crimes is the ground for future reconciliation.

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Only acceptance of facts about judicially proven crimes can make statements about reconciliation trustworthy

Only acceptance of facts about judicially proven crimes can make statements about reconciliation trustworthy

Logo_FHP At a session held on 8 July, 2015, the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) did not pass a resolution proposed by the United Kingdom marking the twentieth anniversary of the Srebrenica genocide, as the Russian Federation vetoed it. The vote was preceded by a month of intense negotiations between permanent members of the UNSC who tried to reach a compromise on the text of the resolution. Throughout this period, Serbia’s top officials, in their public statements and through diplomatic activities aimed at preventing the adoption of the proposed resolution, damaged the process of reconciliation in the region of the former Yugoslavia and discredited earlier statements given by Serbian officials stressing Serbia’s commitment to reconciliation and regret for the victims of the Srebrenica genocide.

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Minister of Defence Declared Documents on Activities of the 37th Motorized Brigade of the Yugoslav Army in Kosovo Top Secret

Minister of Defence Declared Documents on Activities of the 37th Motorized Brigade of the Yugoslav Army in Kosovo Top Secret

post_gasicOn June 12th, 2015, the Humanitarian Law Center filed a misdemeanour charge against the Minister of Defence, Bratislav Gašić, because of the unlawful labeling of the archive of the 37th Yugoslav Army Motorized Brigade (37th VJ MtBr) with the highest level of secrecy of data. The HLC maintains that the Minister of Defence has violated the Data Secrecy Law and that his actions are intended to make it impossible to clarify all of the circumstances relating to the killings of the Kosovo Albanians whose bodies were found in the Rudnica mass grave.

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Why are war crimes trials in Serbia conducted away from the public eye?

Why are war crimes trials in Serbia conducted away from the public eye?

post_visi_sudThe President of the Higher Court in Belgrade prohibited the Humanitarian Law Center (HLC) from recording the public announcement of the first instance judgment in the Beli Manastir Case, without offering valid reasons for such a decision. This decision of the President of the Court represents a continuation of the practice of courts in Serbia of limiting public access to war crimes trials, thus significantly diminishing chances for a social dialogue and dealing with the crimes committed during 1990’s.

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Court of Appeals in Belgrade: Responsibility of the state for the murder of Croats from Vojvodina not affected by the statute of limitations

Court of Appeals in Belgrade: Responsibility of the state for the murder of Croats from Vojvodina not affected by the statute of limitations

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The Court of Appeals in Belgrade has rendered a ruling (available only in Serbian) upholding the appeal filed by Stjepan Oskomić against the judgment of the Basic Court in Belgrade in the lawsuit against the Republic of Serbia, on account of of the responsibility of the state in the murder of his parents, a crime committed in July 1993 in the village of Kukujevci, and has remanded the case for a new trial. The Humanitarian Law Center (HLC), in its capacity of representative of Stjepan Oskomić in this lawsuit, holds that the ruling of the Court of Appeals is just and in accordance with the law, and that it clearly points to the errors in the actions of the first instance court in the case at hand, which has been pending for nine years now.

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On Acquittal for the Crimes in Tenja

On Acquittal for the Crimes in Tenja

post_spomenikOn 6 April 2015, the Trial Chamber of the War Crimes Department of the Higher Court in Belgrade (the Chamber) rendered a judgment finding Žarko Čubrilo not guilty of a war crime against civilians committed in the first half of July 1991 in Tenja (Republic of Croatia). The Humanitarian Law Center (HLC) points out that the decision of the Chamber is based on an erroneous interpretation of key pieces of evidence and a disregard of the most important sections of the statements by eye-witnesses.

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