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Home EJIL Reports ICTY Appeals Chamber Denies Karadzic’s Immunity Motion

ICTY Appeals Chamber Denies Karadzic’s Immunity Motion

Published on October 13, 2009        Author: 

Yesterday the ICTY Appeals Chamber issued (what is to be hoped is) the final decision in the Karadzic/Holbrooke immunity agreement saga. For previous commentary on the issue at EJIL: Talk!, see here and here. Though the Appeals Chamber had some quibbles with the Trial Chamber’s approach in denying an evidentiary hearing, accepting facts alleged by Karadzic pro veritate, and then discounting them, it nonetheless (quite rightly) dismissed Karadzic’s appeal.

Thus, the Appeals Chamber held that even if the alleged Karadzic immunity agreement existed, and was made with the actual authority of the Security Council (not merely an apparent authority, as Karadzic contended), this agreement could still not alter the jurisdiction of the Tribunal without a Security Council resolution to that effect (paras. 34-38). Likewise, the Chamber held that not even an agreement entered into by the Prosecution could bind the Tribunal itself (para. 41), and that Karadzic could not avail himself of the abuse of process doctrine. Like the Trial Chamber, the Appeals Chamber allowed Karadzic to pursue the Holbrooke agreement issue insofar as it may be relevant to sentencing and mitigation (paras. 54-55).

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