Yugoslavia, Socialist Federal Republic of
Practice Relating to Rule 160. Statutes of Limitation
In 1967, during a debate in the Third Committee of the UN General Assembly on the question of the punishment of war criminals and of persons who have committed crimes against humanity, the representative of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia stated:
27. … Yugoslavia, like many other countries, was most anxious to see all those responsible for war crimes and crimes against humanity punished, without exception, and to see the adoption of an international convention which would reaffirm once again, the principle of the non-applicability of statutory limitation to war crimes and crimes against humanity, ensuring that all States would acknowledge and respect that principle …
28. Although the principle of the non-applicability of statutory limitation to prosecution and punishment for war crimes [and crimes] against humanity had been universally accepted since the end of the Second World War, some countries had not yet adapted their legislation to that principle … His delegation … considered that the adoption of a convention on the non-applicability of statutory limitation to the prosecution and punishment of those guilty of war crimes and crimes against humanity was an urgent necessity and a duty.
34. In his delegation’s view, there should be no particular difficulty in adopting the convention [on the non-applicability of statutory limitations to war crimes and crimes against humanity], for it would merely be a solemn reaffirmation of principles which, since the Second World War, had already become positive norms of international law and should therefore prompt all States to adapt their national legislation to positive international law.