Principle of Uti Possidetis and Delimitation on the Danube River

Dimitrijević, Duško (2012) Principle of Uti Possidetis and Delimitation on the Danube River. In: The Meaning of Borders and Border Issues in the Age of Globalization: Europe and Asia. Institute for International Politics and Economics, Belgrade, pp. 147-159. ISBN 978-86-7067-166-9

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The border problem concerns drawing of inter-state borders between Croatia and Serbia – it had been institutionalised during the succession processes in the territory of the former SFR Yugoslavia when the international community accepted the opinion of the Arbitration Commission that inter-republic boundaries were international borders unless the parties concerned did not find some other solution. In this way, the Danube River became a border between Croatia and Serbia. Since the boundary line had been drawn between Baranja and Bačka in 1945 the Danube successively meandered, its riverbed changed while it increasingly retreated from the east to the west. In this way, big areas of arable land became a part of Vojvodina. When the Yugoslav crisis broke out Croatia demanded that the area of about 7,000 hectares, which became a part of Serbia due to the movement of the Danube, should be returned to Croatia in accordance with the Austrian-Hungarian cadastre land surveying from the 19th century. The cadastre border had been mainly drawn along a part of the main course of the Danube, while a part of it had been drawn along the so-called Dunavci, what actually included its tributaries. In the 1990s, Serbia adopted the Law on Territorial Organisation and Local SelfGovernment that followed the earlier solutions from the Law on Establishment and Organisation of the Autonomous Province (AP) of Vojvodina that had been passed in 1945. According to the Law, a part of the cadastre communes from the Danube left bank became a part of the Republic of Serbia – Sombor, Beli Manastir (a part of Batina, Draž, Zmajevac, Kneževi Vinograd), Apatin, Bačka Palanka and a part of Vukovar (a part of Mohovo and Šarengrad). The Law followed the changes of the Danube course, but per se, it was not of a crucial factor for the international legal border demarcation between the two states. With the aim of implementing the process of border demarcation, the International Diplomatic Commission for Identification and Establishment of the Border Line and Preparation of the Treaty on the State Border was established. The Commission adopted the Protocol for Identification and Establishment of the Border Line. However, up to the present days the Inter-State Diplomatic Commission has not published the information on the results of the border demarcation on the Danube. It should be necessary to consider all relevant law argumentation that goes in favour of the Serbian part until the Treaty on the Border is concluded with Croatia.

Item Type: Book Chapter
Uncontrolled Keywords: Serbia, Croatia, Danube River, border line, principle uti possidetis
Depositing User: Ana Vukićević
Date Deposited: 16 Apr 2020 10:03
Last Modified: 16 Apr 2020 10:03

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