state responsibity

Topics: Genocide, Bosnia and Herzegovina, United Nations Pages: 8 (2735 words) Published: January 20, 2014
State responsibility Genocide
In this essay I will aim to understand the role of the State and the States responsibility for state responsibility for non-state actors (corporations in particular) in cases of genocide. In places such as Rwanda, Bosnia- former Yugoslavia will be used as relatable case studies in order to show the progression of international law, when dealing with sovereign states in light of an internationally wrongful act such as genocide is committed. The role of State Responsibility has been a highly controversial debate over a long number of years beginning in the 1930’s. However in recent years there has been a major development of the state’s role in international law which have allowed for the accountability of states for their role in acts of Genocide. Bosnia and Herzegovina v. Serbia and Montenegro

Brief history
1From 1992 to 1995 the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina experienced a war of genocide proportions between the Bosnian Serbs, the Bosnian Croats, and the Bosnian Muslims. On February 26 2007, in Application of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide. 2The Bosnian Genocide Court held that: (1) Serbia violated its obligations under the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (Genocide Convention) to prevent genocide in Srebrenica but did not have the necessary specific intent to commit genocide; and (2) Serbia must fully cooperate with the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) While clarifying state accountability, the extent to which states now have confirmatory obligations to prevent genocide, Thereby increasing the responsibility of states to prevent genocide through humanitarian intervention. The end result of the Bosnian Genocide case is that for the first time genocide is a crime for which states should be held responsible. What is state responsibility?

The subject of state responsibility was already regarded as an important measure of the development of international law in the first half of the twentieth century. In 1948, the United Nations general assembly established the international law commission, and state responsibility was selected amongst the first topics to be discussed by the new legal framework. State responsibility under 3Art .1 of the ILC means ‘every internationally wrongful act of a state entails international responsibility of the state ‘.4 5State responsibility stipulates when and how a state can be held responsible for a breach of an international obligation. The 59 articles on the responsibility of States for Internationally wrongful acts are divided into four parts.6 Part one focuses on wrongful acts of the states, attribution of conduct to a state, breach of an obligation, precluding wrongfulness. Part two details, reparations for injuries, serious breaches of obligations. These parts of expressed by the articles indicates that fault is required in every case for international responsibility to arise. An international wrongful act which results from the breach by a state of an international obligation, this is essential for the protection of fundamental interests of the international community and therefore a breach is recognised as a crime by that community as a whole. The question that is brought to attention is the one of that is genocide considered as a fundamental breach under international law. The Genocide Convention7 Art 11 1948 which is a reflection on customary law describes genocide as an act which is committed to destroy in whole or in part a nation, ethnical or religious group when the objective act which comprises the actus reas of genocide must not only be committed with intent but with the specific intention to destroy in whole or part –in order be constitute as genocide. Genocide is prohibited by the rule of jus cogens and can be characterised as crime under international law under the 8resolution 96 (1) of the UN general assembly in...

Bibliography: Dixon ,M (2013). International Law. 7th ed. Oxford: Oxford university press. 253-255.
Crawford , J. (2001). Responsibility of States for Internationally Wrongful Acts. Available: Last accessed 04 Dec 2013.
BIRKLAND , B. (2009). Reining in Non-State Actors: State Responsibility and Attribution in Cases of Genocide. New York University Law Review. 84 (6), 1631.
Milanovic , M. (2006). State Responsibility for Genocide. The European Journal of International Law. 17 (3), 554.
Asuncion , A. (2010). Pulling the Stops on Genocide: The State or the Individual?. The European Journal of International Law. 20 (4), 1195-1212.
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