The establishment in 1993 of an ad hoc international criminal tribunal to prosecute war crimes committed in the former Yugoslavia reflects the world community’s renewed efforts to enforce the international rule of law and respect for human rights. Yet, despite the obligation of UN member states to arrest, detain, and transfer to the tribunals those charged with war crimes, thus far only one-third of those publicly indicted by the tribunal for the former Yugoslavia has been detained. The most notorious offenders–Radovan Karadzic and Ratko Mladic–continue to enjoy their freedom.
In order to examine how the world community is addressing this problem and what needs to be done, The Century Foundation/Twentieth Century Fund convened a distinguished, international task force–chaired by Justice Richard Goldstone, the first chief prosecutor for the International Criminal Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and for Rwanda. Concluding that “there can be no lasting peace in Bosnia until all war criminals are arrested and brought to justice,” the task force recommends, among other actions, that states use military force, where necessary, to apprehend indicted war criminals and freeze their assets.
In addition to the task force statement, the book includes two papers that discuss the obligations and options of the international community with regard to indicted war criminals, as well as other background materials.