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International Criminal Tribunal Prosecutors Conclude Conference in Arusha

The Prosecutors from the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR), the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), the Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL) and from the International Criminal Court (ICC) concluded three days of discussions about how to better prepare themselves for meeting the challenges of delivering international criminal justice. The prosecutors issued a joint statement today from Arusha , Tanzania , the headquarters of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) where the conference was held.

The statement was signed by prosecutors Hassan Bubacar Jallow, of the ICTR, Carla Del Ponte, of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), Luis Moreno Ocampo of the ICC and David Crane of the Special Court for Sierra Leone .

The prosecutors reaffirmed their commitment to ending impunity, deterring crimes against humanity, instituting a culture of accountability and bringing about peace and reconciliation in post-conflict societies. Their statement also calls upon national and international authorities to assist the tribunals by arresting and transferring indicted fugitives such as Radovan Karadzic, Ratko Mladic, Ante Gotovina, Félicien Kabuga and Charles Taylor for trial.

During the three days of meetings in Arusha, the Prosecutors discussed a wide range of issues they face in bringing to justice those most responsible for genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity in the conflict regions of the world.

The prosecutors exchanged views on successful strategies for conducting investigations, protecting witnesses and enforcing sentences against convicts of the international tribunals. They also assessed how best to administer tribunals and to complete their work in the time limits prescribed by the United Nations.

The Prosecutors have formed a task force to gather and exchange strategies and best practices for the prosecution of international crimes. They agreed to meet again in six months in Sierra Leone .

Other presenters at the conference included:Adama Dieng, ICTR Registrar; Navanethem Pillay, Appeals Judge at the ICC and former President of the ICTR; Lovemore Munlo, Deputy Registrar at ICTR, Gavin Ruxton, Chief of prosecutions at the ICTY; Martin Ngoga, Deputy Prosecutor General of Rwanda; Bernard Muna, former Deputy Prosecutor of the ICTR; Michael Bohlander from the University of Durham and Binaifer Nowrojee of Human Rights Watch and Harvard Law School.

The conference was funded by grants to the ICTR from the Ford Foundation and the Open Society Institute.

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