United Nations

A/RES/51/116


General Assembly

Distr. GENERAL  

7 March 1997

ORIGINAL:
ENGLISH



Fifty-first session
Agenda item 110 (c)


                  RESOLUTION ADOPTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY

      [on the report of the Third Committee (A/51/619/Add.3 and Corr.1)]


            51/116.     Situation of human rights in the
                        Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina,
                        the Republic of Croatia and the
                        Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (Serbia
                        and Montenegro)


      The General Assembly,

      Guided by the purposes and principles of the Charter of the
United Nations, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, 1/ the
International Covenants on Human Rights 2/ and all other human rights
instruments and instruments of international humanitarian law,
including the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 3/ for the
protection of victims of war and the Additional Protocols thereto, of
1977, 4/ as well as the principles and commitments undertaken by
participating States of the Organization for Security and Cooperation
in Europe,

      Reaffirming that all Member States have an obligation to promote
and protect human rights and fundamental freedoms and to fulfil their
obligations under the human rights instruments to which they are
party, and reaffirming also the obligation of all to respect
international humanitarian law,

      Reaffirming also the territorial integrity of all States in the
region, within their internationally recognized borders,

      Welcoming the entry into force and implementation of the General
Framework Agreement for Peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the
annexes thereto, initialled at Dayton, Ohio, on 21 November 1995 and
signed by Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Republic of Croatia and the
Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro), representing
also the Bosnian Serb party, in Paris on 14 December 1995
(collectively the "Peace Agreement"), 5/ which, inter alia,
committed the parties in Bosnia and Herzegovina to respect fully human
rights,

      Welcoming also the efforts of Member States in assisting in the
implementation of the Peace Agreement through their participation in
the Implementation Force and other activities directed at resolving
the conflicts in the former Yugoslavia, and commending the
Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe for the
implementation of the mandates with which it was entrusted by the
Peace Agreement,

      Welcoming further the Basic Agreement on the Region of Eastern
Slavonia, Baranja and Western Sirmium (the "Basic Agreement"), 6/
signed on 12 November 1995 by the Government of the Republic of
Croatia and the local Serb representatives, which created conditions
permitting the establishment of the United Nations Transitional
Administration for Eastern Slavonia, Baranja and Western Sirmium, and
Security Council resolution 1037 (1996) of 15 January 1996, by which
the Council established the Transitional Administration,

      Welcoming the participation of Member States in the Transitional
Administration and other activities intended to facilitate
implementation of the Basic Agreement and the transition of the region
of Eastern Slavonia, Baranja and Western Sirmium from local Serb
control to control by the Republic of Croatia,

      Recognizing the positive effects that the implementation of the
Peace Agreement and the Basic Agreement have had on the region since
their respective entry into force, in particular the return of peace
to the region and the increasing normalization of social, political
and economic life,

      Taking note of the Agreement on Normalization of Relations
between the Republic of Croatia and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia
(Serbia and Montenegro), 7/ in particular article 7 thereof, which,
inter alia, ensures conditions for the return of refugees and
displaced persons and the return of their property or a just
compensation, and in that context stressing the positive impact of
mutual recognition agreements among successor States of the former
Yugoslavia,

      Welcoming the holding of elections in Bosnia and Herzegovina on
14 September 1996 with the assistance of the Organization for Security
and Cooperation in Europe and other organizations,

      Gravely concerned nonetheless at the continuing evidence of
violations of human rights and fundamental freedoms taking place in
Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Republic of Croatia and the Federal
Republic of Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro),

      Stressing the importance of an effective functioning of the
International Tribunal for the Prosecution of Persons Responsible for
Serious Violations of International Humanitarian Law Committed in the
Territory of the Former Yugoslavia since 1991, established pursuant to
Security Council resolutions 808 (1993) of 22 February 1993 and 827
(1993) of 25 May 1993, for the positive development of the situation
of human rights in the region,

      Acknowledging the progress made by the Federation of Bosnia and
Herzegovina towards ethnic reconciliation in the region,

      Calling upon all parties to the Peace Agreement to implement the
necessary measures in the furtherance of ethnic reconciliation in
their respective territories,

      Encouraging the international community, acting through the
United Nations and other international organizations as well as
bilaterally, to enhance significantly humanitarian support for the
people of the region and to promote human rights, economic
reconstruction, the repatriation of refugees and the holding of free
elections in Bosnia and Herzegovina,

      Welcoming the efforts of the European Union to promote respect
for human rights and fundamental freedoms, and endorsing the
recommendation of the Special Rapporteur that economic and other aid
must be made conditional on meaningful progress on human rights,

      Underlining the relationship between the fulfilment by the
parties of their human rights commitments and the readiness of the
international community to commit resources for reconstruction and
development,

      Dismayed by the large number of missing persons still unaccounted
for, particularly in Bosnia and Herzegovina and in the Republic of
Croatia, and noting with approval the establishment of the
International Commission on Missing Persons in the Former Yugoslavia
and the efforts of the expert member of the Working Group on Enforced
or Involuntary Disappearances and of the working and expert groups on
the missing, chaired respectively by the International Committee of
the Red Cross and the High Representative,

      Expressing its particular concern for the situation of women and
also that of children, the elderly and refugees, internally displaced
persons and minorities, as well as other vulnerable groups in the
region,

      Calling attention to the reports and recommendations of the
Special Rapporteur of the Commission on Human Rights, Mrs. Elisabeth
Rehn, on the situation of human rights in the territories of Bosnia
and Herzegovina, the Republic of Croatia and the Federal Republic of
Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro), including her most recent reports
of 4 November 1996 8/ and 12 November 1996, 9/ and especially
the recommendations set forth therein,

      Acknowledging efforts made by the Governments of the region to
meet the recommendations of the Special Rapporteur, which have yet to
be implemented fully,

      Recalling the report on the situation of human rights in
Croatia 10/ submitted to the Security Council in pursuance of
Council resolution 1019 (1995) of 9 November 1995,

      Recalling also its resolutions 50/192 and 50/193 of 22 December
1995, Commission on Human Rights resolution 1996/71 of 23 April
1996 11/ and all relevant resolutions of the Security Council,
especially resolutions 1009 (1995) of 10 August 1995 and 1079 (1996)
of 15 November 1996,

      1.    Expresses its serious concern about continuing human rights
violations within Bosnia and Herzegovina and the delays in fully
implementing the human rights provisions of the Peace Agreement;

      2.    Condemns in the strongest terms the continued forcible
expulsion of individuals from their homes in Bosnia and Herzegovina,
such as has happened recently in Banja Luka and Mostar, and the
practice of destroying the homes of those previously forcibly
expelled, and calls for the immediate arrest and punishment of
individuals engaged in these actions;

      3.    Condemns the continuing restrictions on freedom of movement
within the Republika Srpska, within some parts of the Federation of
Bosnia and Herzegovina, and between the Republika Srpska and the
Federation;

      4.    Expresses concern for women and children, especially in
Bosnia and Herzegovina, who were victims of rape used as a weapon of
war, and calls for the perpetrators of rape to be brought to justice
while ensuring that victims and witnesses receive adequate assistance
and protection;

      5.    Insists that all parties implement fully the commitments
made in the Peace Agreement to protect human rights, and also insists
that the parties act to promote and protect democratic institutions of
government at all levels in their respective countries, to ensure
freedom of expression and of the media, to allow and encourage freedom
of association, including with respect to political parties, and to
ensure freedom of movement and that the parties in Bosnia and
Herzegovina comply with the human rights provisions of their national
Constitution;

      6.    Welcomes the conclusions of the meeting of the ministerial
Steering Board and the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina, 12/
held in Paris on 14 November 1996, in order to define the guiding
principles of the civilian consolidation plan of the peace process in
Bosnia and Herzegovina, in particular in the field of human rights;

      7.    Calls upon the participants in the Peace Implementation
Meeting, to be held in London on 6 December 1996, to ensure that the
promotion of human rights, including the fulfilment of their
respective human rights obligations by the parties to the Peace
Agreement, as well as the strengthening of national institutions, will
be a central element in the new civilian structure implementing the
Peace Agreement;

      8.    Calls upon the Government of the Federal Republic of
Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro) to undertake substantially greater
efforts to institute democratic norms, especially in regard to the
protection of free and independent media, and full respect for human
rights and fundamental freedoms;

      9.    Strongly urges the Government of the Federal Republic of
Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro) to revoke all discriminatory
legislation and to apply all other legislation without discrimination
and to take urgent action to prevent arbitrary evictions and
dismissals and discrimination against any ethnic or national,
religious or linguistic group;

      10.   Urgently demands that the authorities of the Federal
Republic of Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro) take immediate action
to put an end to the repression of, and to prevent violence against,
non-Serb populations in Kosovo, including acts of harassment,
beatings, torture, warrantless searches, arbitrary detention and
unfair trials, and also to respect the rights of persons belonging to
minority groups in the Sandjak and Vojvodina and of persons belonging
to the Bulgarian minority;

      11.   Calls upon the Government of the Federal Republic of
Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro) to act immediately to allow all
residents in Kosovo to participate freely and fully in the political,
economic, social and cultural life of the region, particularly in the
areas of education and health care, and to ensure that all the
residents of the region are guaranteed equal treatment and protection
regardless of ethnic affiliation;

      12.   Calls upon the Government of the Republic of Croatia to
fully respect human rights and fundamental freedoms, including the
rights of persons belonging to any national, ethnic, religious or
linguistic minority;

      13.   Also calls upon the Government of the Republic of Croatia to
undertake greater efforts to adhere to democratic norms, especially in
regard to the Zagreb city council and the protection of free and
independent media, and to cooperate fully with the United Nations
Transitional Administration for Eastern Slavonia, Baranja and Western
Sirmium to assure that the reintegration of Eastern Slavonia occurs
peacefully and with respect for the human rights of all residents and
returning displaced persons and refugees, including their right to
remain, leave or return in safety and dignity;

      14.   Calls for the full and consistent implementation of the
Peace Agreement and the Basic Agreement by all the parties to them;

      15.   Urges all the parties to the Peace Agreement to create the
necessary political, social and economic conditions for the return of
refugees and displaced persons in safety and dignity;

      16.   Insists that all authorities in Bosnia and Herzegovina
cooperate fully with the Commission on Human Rights for Bosnia and
Herzegovina, created under annex 6 of the Peace Agreement, in
particular by providing information requested by the Human Rights
Ombudsman and by participating in hearings before the Human Rights
Chamber, and demands that the Republika Srpska cease its pattern of
non-cooperation with the Commission;

      17.   Calls upon the Commission on Human Rights for Bosnia and
Herzegovina to intensify its activities concerning alleged or apparent
violations of human rights, or alleged or apparent discrimination of
any kind;

      18.   Welcomes the commitments of the international community for
post-war reconstruction and development assistance, and encourages the
expansion of this assistance, while noting that such assistance should
be conditioned on full compliance by the parties with agreements that
have been made;

      19.   Urges the parties to create the necessary conditions for
free and fair municipal elections to be held as soon as possible and
as envisaged in the Peace Agreement, under the supervision of the
Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe;

      20.   Welcomes the enactment by the Republic of Croatia on 20
September 1996 of a new general amnesty law, intended in part to
promote confidence on the part of the local Serb population, and calls
for the proper implementation of that law;

      21.   Calls upon the Government of the Republic of Croatia to
allow the expeditious return of all refugees and displaced persons and
to use all available means to secure their safety and human rights,
and to investigate and arrest those responsible for acts of violence
and intimidation aimed at driving people away;

      22.   Strongly condemns the continuing refusal of the authorities
of the Republika Srpska, the Government of the Federal Republic of
Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro), certain other elements within the
Federation and to some extent the Government of the Republic of
Croatia to arrest and surrender indicted war criminals known to be
present in their territories, as they have agreed to do under the
Peace Agreement;

      23.   Urgently calls upon all States and all parties to the Peace
Agreement to meet their obligations to cooperate fully with the
International Tribunal for the Prosecution of Persons Responsible for
Serious Violations of International Humanitarian Law Committed in the
Territory of the Former Yugoslavia since 1991, as required by Security
Council resolution 827 (1993), including with respect to surrendering
persons sought by the International Tribunal, and urges all States and
the Secretary-General to support the Tribunal to the fullest extent
possible, in particular, by helping to ensure that persons indicted by
the Tribunal stand trial before it;

      24.   Demands that the Government of Bosnia and Herzegovina, in
particular the authorities of the Republika Srpska, and the Government
of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro) ensure
full and free access to their territories to all institutions and
organizations concerned with the implementation of the present
resolution, including non-governmental organizations;

      25.   Welcomes the interim reports 8/, 9/ of the Special Rapporteur
of the Commission on Human Rights on the situation of human rights in
the territories of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Republic of Croatia and
the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro), and
commends the Special Rapporteur and the Human Rights Field Operation
in the former Yugoslavia for their continuing efforts;

      26.   Urges all parties to implement fully the recommendations of
the Special Rapporteur of the Commission on Human Rights;

      27.   Calls upon the authorities of the States and entities within
the mandate of the Special Rapporteur to cooperate with her and to
provide her on a regular basis with information about the actions they
are taking to implement her recommendations;

      28.   Reaffirms, as recommended previously by the Special
Rapporteur, that major reconstruction aid must be made conditional on
demonstrated respect for human rights, emphasizes in that context the
necessity of cooperation with the International Tribunal, and welcomes
in this regard the conclusions of the meeting of the ministerial
Steering Board and the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina, 12/ held in
Paris on 14 November 1996;

      29.   Welcomes the efforts of the Organization for Security and
Cooperation in Europe, the Council of Europe, the European Community
Monitoring Mission and the United Nations High Commissioner for Human
Rights in monitoring and strengthening the respect for human rights
and fundamental freedoms in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the region;

      30.   Calls upon the parties to the Peace Agreement to take
immediate steps to determine the identity, the whereabouts and the
fate of missing persons, in particular near Srebrenica, žepa,
Prijedor, Sanski Most and Vukovar, including through close cooperation
with the International Commission on Missing Persons in the Former
Yugoslavia, other international humanitarian organizations and
independent experts, and commends the work undertaken by the expert
member of the Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances
of the Commission on Human Rights, the Special Rapporteur, the Working
Group on the Process for Tracing Persons Unaccounted For, chaired by
the International Committee of the Red Cross, and the Expert Group on
Exhumation and Missing Persons, chaired by the High Representative,
and stresses the importance of coordinating work in this area;

      31.   Encourages all Governments to respond favourably to appeals
for voluntary contributions for the benefit of the Commission on Human
Rights for Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Commission for Real Property
Claims of Displaced Persons and Refugees for Bosnia and Herzegovina,
the International Commission on Missing Persons in the Former
Yugoslavia, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human
Rights/Centre for Human Rights and other institutions of
reconciliation, democracy and justice in the region;

      32.   Decides to continue its examination of this question at its
fifty-second session under the item entitled "Human rights questions".


                                                          82nd plenary meeting
                                                              12 December 1996


                                     Notes

1/    Resolution 217 A (III).

2/    Resolution 2200 A (XXI), annex.

3/    United Nations, Treaty Series, vol. 75, Nos. 970-973.

4/    Ibid., vol. 1125, Nos. 17512 and 17513.

5/    See A/50/790-S/1995/999; see Official Records of the Security
Council, Fiftieth Year, Supplement for October, November and
December 1995, document S/1995/999.

6/    See A/50/757-S/1995/951; see Official Records of the Security
Council, Fiftieth Year, Supplement for October, November and
December 1995, document S/1995/951.

7/    A/51/318-S/1996/706, annex, and A/51/351-S/1996/744, annex; see
Official Records of the Security Council, Fifty-first Year, Supplement
for July, August and September 1996, documents S/1996/706 and
S/1996/744.

8/    A/51/651-S/1996/902, annex; see Official Records of the Security
Council, Fifty-first Year, Supplement for October, November and
December 1996, document S/1996/902.

9/    A/51/663-S/1996/927, annex; see Official Records of the Security
Council, Fifty-first Year, Supplement for October, November and
December 1996, document S/1996/927.

10/   Official Records of the Security Council, Fifty-first Year,
Supplement for July, August and September 1996, document S/1996/691.

11/   See Official Records of the Economic and Social Council, 1996,
Supplement No. 3 (E/1996/23), chap. II, sect. A.

12/   Official Records of the Security Council, Fifty-first Year,
Supplement for October, November and December 1996, document
S/1996/968.

 

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