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Prosecutor v. Tadic

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    Bloomberg Law

    Citation. App. Chamber, Int’l Crim. Trib. For former Yugoslavia, 1992 Case No. IT-94-1-AR72, 35 I.L.M. 32 (1996)

    Brief Fact Summary. The claim Tadic (D) brought before the Court was that the Security Council did not have the authority to establish an international criminal tribunal.


    Synopsis of Rule of Law. The Security Council enjoys a wide margin of discretion in choosing the course of action once it determines that a particular situation poses a threat to peace.


    Facts. According to the Charter of the United Nations, the Security Council shall determine the existence of any threat to the peace and decide what measures shall be taken to restore international peace and security. Tadic (D) claimed the Security Council did not have the power to establish an International Criminal Tribunal to deal with armed conflict in the former Yugoslavia.


    Issue. Does the Security Council enjoy a wide margin of discretion in choosing the course of action once it determines that a particular situation poses a threat to the peace?


    Held. Yes. The Security Council enjoys a wide margin of discretion in choosing the course of action once it determines that a particular situation poses a threat to peace. The Security Council may exercise its exceptional powers under Chapter VI or Chapter VII of the U.N. Charter where internal armed conflicts are determined to pose a threat to peace. These powers are mandatory and coercive. Although the establishment of an international tribunal is not explicitly mandated, the measures described in the Charter are merely illustrative and not exhaustive.


    Discussion. Originally, Tadic (D) contested the Security Council’s power to determine whether the situation in the former Yugoslavia constituted a threat to the peace, but he no longer held this view at this stage. Here, he was challenging the legality and appropriateness of the measures taken by the Security Council.



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