BBC Monitoring European
Excerpt from a report by Bosnia-Hercegovina public radio on 9 January.
[Reporter Mirsad Bajtarevic] -- Bosnia-Hercegovina's aggression and
genocide lawsuit against Serbia-Montenegro, i.e. the then Yugoslavia,
was submitted to the International Court of Justice [ICJ] in The Hague
in 1993. After numerous objections and postponements, hearing has been
set for 27 February 2006. B-H Presidency member Sulejman Tihic expects
the hearing to last six to eight weeks, during which a verdict is
expected to be passed.
At the end of last year, at the request from the SDS [Serb Democratic
Party] -- B-H Minister of Foreign Affairs sent a letter to the ICJ
asking it to temporarily suspend the court proceedings until the
B-H Constitutional Court reached a decision on Presidency member
Borisav Paravac's request to establish the constitutionality of the
lawsuit. Tihic says that this amounts to scoring political points:
[Tihic] -- All objections, including these objections raised by Paravac
and Ivanic, have been considered at the court; they were also examined
at Presidency sessions, the 27th and 59th sessions of the new Presidency,
and were rejected.
[Reporter] -- B-H legal representative in the lawsuit against
Serbia-Montenegro Sakib Softic has returned Ivanic's letter to Sarajevo
because he is the only party - under the ICJ Statute - authorized to
liaise. Softic says that the legal representative receives instructions
from the B-H Presidency and that he has nothing to do with the minister
of foreign affairs.
[Softic] -- I have taken note of Mr Ivanic's letter sent to the
B-H ambassador. However, this does not impose any obligation on me
to do anything.
[Reporter] -- Tihic and Softic say that the charges can be proven, which
is also a view shared by the director of the Information and Documentation
Centre, Mirsad Tokaca, who said that the charges could be proven even
mathematically. He also noted that Mladen Ivanic's move was an act
aimed against the state.
[Tokaca] -- I am not surprised that somebody like Paravac has done this,
but I am surprised that a man who I believe to be relatively literate,
Mr Ivanic, has embarked on an adventure of this kind. For God's sake,
he is the foreign minister of this country. He ought to know what
the international legal status of a country means and what obligations
this country assumed under the Dayton Agreement.