Yugoslavia may have to pay Bosnia reparations for genocide and property damage, after it failed this week to get Bosnia’s lawsuit thrown out of court. Yugoslavia, which now consists only of Serbia and Montenegro, had long declared itself the sole legal heir to the larger, six-state Yugoslavia that broke up during the wars of the 1990s. But after Bosnia sued it for reparations stemming from the 1992–1995 war, Yugoslavia tried to argue that it didn’t even exist in this form back then and was not responsible for crimes of that era. The World Court, based in the Netherlands, found that reasoning implausible. Ironically, the ruling could help Yugoslavia in its own court battle. It is seeking reparations from NATO countries for the bombing of Belgrade during the Kosovo war of 1999.
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