International Criminal Tribunal's Bias Against Bosnian Croats

The Zajednicar, October 29, 1997 NEW YORK, NY - After the voluntary surrender of 10 indictees to the International Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia at The Hague (ICTY) on Oct. 7, Bosnian Croats, as a statistical group, account for 70% of the total number of detained indictees.
According to CIA estimates (The New York Times, March 9, 1995, "CIA Report Finds Serbs Guilty in Majority of Bosnia War Crimes," Roger Cohen) Bosnian Croats were responsible for less than 10% of all crimes committed in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Yet today, they account for 23% of all indictees and 70% of all detainees...

On top of this obvious disproportion, the fact remains that the Bosnian Croats were primarily the victims in the war in Bosnian and Herzegovina. According to the United States Information Agency (USIA) study of Dec.1995, Bosnian Croats had suffered the highest degree of injury in the war. The survey found that 42% of Bosnian Croats suffered physical harm. The same was for 15% of Bosnian Muslims and 12% of Bosnian Serbs. This surprising finding is consistent with war casualty reports from the Bosnian Croat authorities and the Roman Catholic Church leadership in Bosnia and Herzegovina. For instance, the Archbishop of Sarajevo, Cardinal Vinko Puljic, told the European Roman Catholic leaders in Hessen, Germany last year that two thirds of his archdiocese of 528,000 persons has been expelled or left their homes (German Press Agency DPA, June 3, 1996). The majority of the archdiocese members live in central Bosnia. Ironically, almost all of the Bosnian Croat indictees come from the Lasva River valley in central Bosnia, which, because of its millitary industry, was the primary target of all parties and was under siege throughout the war. Nevertheless, no indictments are forthcoming in regard to the crimes committed against Bosnian Croats. The Croatian Government continues to insist that the Tribunal must look into these crimes, in spite of views at ICTY that it does not have adequate resources for this purpose. The Croatian Government, the Bosnian Croat authorities, and the Roman Catholic Church institutions have submitted extensive information to ICTY in this regard.