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President and Prosecutor Update Security Council on Completion Strategy

On 29 June 2004, the ICTR President and Prosecutor reported to the UN Security Council that the Tribunal is on schedule to finish its trials by 2008 as required by Security Council Resolution 1503. President Erik Møse and Prosecutor Hassan B. Jallow outlined the reforms undertaken by the ICTR to accomplish its mandate.

President Møse informed the Council that the Tribunal is on schedule. Judgements involving 22 accused have been rendered. By the end of 2004, cases involving 48 accused will be completed or in progress. In the course of 2005 and 2006, the Tribunal expects to have completed all cases involving the 27 accused on trial in 2004. The Tribunal has reduced the number of days required to hear single accused cases. Priority will also be given to complete the five remaining multi-accused trials involving a total of 22 accused. Measures taken to expedite trials include an increased number of ad litem judges, the creation of a Trial Committee to ensure that cases are ready for trial, and the hearing of trials in morning and afternoon shifts. There are plans to construct a fourth courtroom.

Prosecutor Jallow reiterated his intention to focus on the persons most responsible for the atrocities committed in 1994. Middle and lower-rank persons will be transferred to national jurisdictions, including Rwanda. He intends to transfer five of the present detainees to national jurisdictions, as well as at least four indictees at large and some other fugitives, provided that they are apprehended. He also announced a revised indictment policy which will avoid excessive number of charges. The Prosecutor will also ensure that cases are ready for trial immediately on confirmation of indictments. The process for selecting witnesses will be streamlined and their number limited in order to expedite the trials.

Both the President and the Prosecutor stressed the importance of maintaining the present level of resources for the ICTR. The delay of some States to pay their contributions could have serious consequences for the Completion Strategy. They also emphasized the need for States to continue their cooperation with the Tribunal, in particular to apprehend fugitives and facilitate the travel of witnesses to Arusha. Cases will only be transferred to national jurisdictions where the accused will receive a fair trial with due process.

The meeting of the Security Council was a follow up of Resolution 1534, according to which the ICTR and ICTY Presidents and Prosecutors shall report every six months on the progress made towards the implementation of the Completion Strategies of the two Tribunals. According to Resolution 1503, investigations shall be finished by 2004, trials by 2008, and appeals by 2010. President Theodor Meron and Prosecutor Carla del Ponte represented the ICTY at the meeting.

For information only - Not an official document

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