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UN's legal immunity challenged in Dutch court

UN's legal immunity challenged in Dutch court
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A Dutch court is being urged to waive the legal immunity of the United Nations in a law suit over the 1995 massacre of Muslims at Srebrenica during the Bosnian war. The civil case, filed on behalf of some 6,000 relatives of the victims, has opened in the Hague. The UN and the Dutch state are named in the action. It comes after a separate case was opened against the Dutch government on Monday, with survivors of the massacre accusing it of negligence.

Bosnian Serb forces commanded by General Ratko Mladic killed some 8,000 Muslim men and boys from Srebrenica. They were taken away and murdered after a Dutch unit serving with the UN abandoned the town, which had been declared a UN safe area.

The Dutch government resigned in 2002 after a report blamed politicians for sending the Dutch troops on an impossible mission. The UN has invoked its legal immunity in the case brought by the relatives of the victims, saying it will not take part in the current court cases.