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racial or religious group.”192  The Convention does not quantify the proportion of a population that needs to be destroyed before genocide can legally be said to have occurred.193   Nor does Article IX expressly impose an obligation on States to prevent, or be held accountable for, genocide.194 That is, until the ICJ established such an obligation in its recent Bosnian Genocide decision.  

For the first time in legal history, of the four genocide cases that have come before the ICJ, the Court unequivocally held in Bosnian Genocide that States can be found responsible for genocide, rather than simply have to punish the individual perpetrators.195  A state using a weapon of mass destruction capable of destroying a national group, such as would occur in worst case scenario cyber attack, could thus be liable for genocide if it had the requisite specific intent to destroy the group to which the victims belonged.196  Three Rwandan media leaders were recently found guilty of incitement to genocide for publishing and broadcasting words and pictures that produced

192 Under Article II, genocide includes the following acts: (a) Killing members of the group; (b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group; (c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part; (d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group; (e) Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.  Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, December, 9 1948, 78 U.N.T.S. 277.  

193 Article I of the Convention necessarily implies a prohibition against States themselves committing genocide, and that, if an organ of the State, or a person or group whose acts are attributable to the State, commits an act of genocide or a related act enumerated in Article III of the Convention, the international responsibility of the State is incurred.  Bosnian Genocide, supra note 4, at 166; Scott Shackelford, Holding States Accountable for the Ultimate Human Rights Abuse: An Analysis of the ICJ Bosnian Genocide Decision, 14 No. 3 Hum. Rts. Brief 30 (2007).

194 Article IX of the Genocide Convention states: “Disputes between the Contracting Parties relating to the interpretation, application or fulfillment of the present Convention, including those relating to the responsibility of a State for genocide or for any of the other acts enumerated in article III, shall be submitted to the International Court of Justice at the request of any of the parties to the dispute.”  Genocide Convention, supra note 1, art. IX.  

195 Trial of Pakistani Prisoners of War (Pakistan v. India) 1973 I.C.J. Rep. 328 (Dec. 15); Bosnian Genocide case, supra note 4; Legality of the Use of Force Case (Yugo. v. United Kingdom) 1999 I.C.J. 124, 132  (Order of 2June 1999); Application of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (Croatia v. Yugo.) 2002 I.C.J. Order 118 (Nov. 19).

196 Statement to the Press by H.E. Judge Rosalyn Higgins, President of the International Court of Justice, Feb. 26, 2007.

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