Women’s Participation in the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY)

Julie Mertus   •   July 2004


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Bosnian civil society groups have taken the lead in addressing needs not met by their state during its postwar reconstruction period. Women’s groups have spurred the creation of a war crimes court, the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), and have filled gaps in the court’s reconciliation processes. They pressed the court to consider gender-based crimes as violations of international law. Bosnian women’s groups connected women witnesses with the trials, serving as links between The Hague and fellow Bosnians. Women in Bosnia have furthered efforts to incorporate gender issues into future investigations, and have set important precedents in international law.

 

This publication highlights the significant contributions women have made to the ICTY despite the overall challenges and limitations it faces. It also demonstrates that the inclusion of women and gender expertise at the ICTY was vital not only for the prosecution of crimes committed against women, but also for the broader pursuit of justice and the advancement of international law.

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