The Impact of Litigating Breaches of International (Humanitarian) Law on Truth and Rehabilitation of Victims. A Case Study.
- What are the aims of victims for initiating legal proceedings?
- In what way did the different phases of the legal proceedings (submitting the claim, investigations, decisions) fulfill – or failed to fulfill – the aims of the claimants?
- What were the effects of the end result of the proceedings? This question tackles the meaning of winning and of losing a court case.
This study analyzes the impact of legal proceedings initiated by victims of war crimes. Formally, the objective of legal proceedings is to establish liability of perpetrators and obtain compensation for the harm suffered by victims. In practice, victims also seek acknowledgement of the facts, trigger public debate or a change of policy or law. This study considers the case before Dutch courts that was initiated in 2005 by a Bosnian who was the only remaining member of a family killed during the Srebrenica massacre by the Bosnian Serbs in 1995. He sought to establish responsibility of the Dutch government for the death of his family. It was the first time a government was held accountable for the conduct of its peacekeeping troops under a UN mandate.
1) De aanklager, Het Joegoslavië tribunaal en de selectie van verdachten”. Proefschrift. Boom Juridische Uitgevers. December 2010
2 ) “War reparations in Bosnia: individual stories and collective interests”, with Kate Clark, in: Narratives of Justice in and out of the court room , eds Glasius & Zarkov, Springer, 2014
3) 25 Jaar Joegoslavië tribunaal: hoe juristen geschiedenis schrijven”, in: Militaire Spectator, May 2018