Stephanie Zosak


In 2005, the government of Bosnia and Herzegovina passed a series of amendments to its citizenship law. The amendments affected the mandate of the Citizenship Review Commission (CRC), which was a body originally established to review naturalizations. Since the amendments took effect, and in response to international pressure to combat terrorism, the CRC has concentrated on reviewing the citizenship status of former who entered Bosnia and Herzegovina to fight alongside the Muslim Bosniaks in the 1992-1995 war that followed the country's declaration of independence from Yugoslavia. The CRC has revoked the citizenship of hundreds of former and has commenced deportation proceedings. In an effort to comply with the international community's post-9/11 counterterrorism objectives, the CRC has violated the human rights of Islamic naturalized citizens within Bosnia and Herzegovina by denying them certain procedural rights and protections that are guaranteed under international human rights law. These include the right of due process, the right to appeal, the right to be free from discrimination based on race and religion, and the right to not be deported to a country where they would be subjected to torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. Bosnia and Herzegovina should pursue counterterrorism measures and comply with international security standards, but it must do so in a way that does not violate its obligations under international human rights law.