1991

2nd opinion on Yugoslavia

20 November 1991 Lord Carrington, president of the Conference on Yugoslavia asked the Committee to formulate an opinion on: Does the Serbian population in Croatia and Bosnia Herzegovina as one of the constituent peoples of Yugoslavia, have the right to self-determination [Pellet, UN extend self determination to all peoples, the notion of people is no longer homogenous and should not be seen as encompassing the whole population of any state Within a state various ethnic, religious, linguistic communities might exist, those communities have the right to see their identity recognised and benefit from all the human rights, including the right to choose their national identity… One might thus suggest a distinction between nationality & citizenship… there is also a disassociation between nationality and territory, however uti possidetis remain]

Right of self-determination must not involve changes to existing frontiers at the time of independence (uti possidetis juris) except where the states concerned agree otherwise Where there are one or more groups within a State, they have the right to recognition of their identity under International Law Peremptory norms of international law require states to ensure respect for the rights of minorities Art 1 of the two 1986 International Covenants on human rights establishes that the principle of the right to self-determination serves to safeguard human rights. By virtue of that right every individual may choose to belong to whatever ethnic, religious or language community he or she wishes One possible consequence of this principle might be for the members of the Serbian population in Bosnia Herzegovina and Croatia to be recognised under agreements between the republics as having the nationality of their choice