Bosnia and Herzegovina
Practice Relating to Rule 98. Enforced Disappearance
Bosnia and Herzegovina’s Criminal Code (2003) criminalizes the following as crimes against humanity:
(1) Whoever, as part of a widespread or systematic attack directed against any civilian population, with knowledge of such an attack, perpetrates any of the following acts:
i) Enforced disappearance of persons.
(2) For the purpose of paragraph 1 of this Article, the following terms shall have the following meanings:
h) Enforced disappearance of persons
means the arrest, detention or abduction of persons by, or with the authorization, support or acquiescence of, a State or a political organization, followed by a refusal to acknowledge that deprivation of freedom or to give information on the fate or whereabouts of those persons, with an aim of removing them from the protection of the law for a prolonged period of time.
[emphasis in original]
In 2007, in the Šimšić case, the Appellate Panel of the Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina stated:
The Court found no grounds for the Defence assertion that [enforced] disappearances … were not accepted as crimes against humanity pursuant to customary international law. To wit, the Court notes that the stated actions are indisputably criminal offences which at the time of war acquire the characteristics and the meaning of war crimes …
[T]he Appellate Panel finds that, pursuant to the ICTY jurisprudence, … enforced disappearance of persons [is] listed in the ICTY case law as the offences falling under the category of “other inhumane offences”.
[T]he Appellate Panel notes that the category of “other inhumane acts, as a general category of crimes against humanity”, constitutes part of customary international law.