Bosnia Charges Genocide: Moral Claims and the Politics of State-building in a Divided Society

Maja Catic


This article examines the relationship between moral claims and political demands made by the Bosniak elites against the backdrop of Bosnia’s Genocide Case at the International Court of Justice. The article demonstrates how in the post-Dayton period, the Genocide Case became an integral element of the statebuilding strategy seeking the constitutional and territorial overhaul of the Dayton Bosnian state and the restoration of the pre-Dayton, unitary state, consistent with the interests and the identity of the Bosniak majority. Situating the Genocide Case in the realm of the ‘politics of entitlement’ characteristic of many divided societies, this article argues that the Bosniak statebuilding strategy compounds the challenges faced by Bosnia’s post-conflict, divided society.

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