GENERAL ASSEMBLY EXTENDS TERMS OF AD LITEM JUDGES FOR RWANDA TRIBUNAL UNTIL END OF 2008 TO COMPLETE WAR CRIMES TRIALS ON TIME

2 November 2006
GA/10526

GENERAL ASSEMBLY EXTENDS TERMS OF AD LITEM JUDGES FOR RWANDA TRIBUNAL UNTIL END OF 2008 TO COMPLETE WAR CRIMES TRIALS ON TIME

2 November 2006
General Assembly
GA/10526
Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

Sixty-first General Assembly

Plenary

45th & 46th Meetings (AM & PM)


GENERAL ASSEMBLY EXTENDS TERMS OF AD LITEM JUDGES FOR RWANDA TRIBUNAL


UNTIL END OF 2008 TO COMPLETE WAR CRIMES TRIALS ON TIME

 


Assembly Fills 19 Vacancies on Economic and Social Council;

Election for Remaining Seat from Eastern European States Stalls


The General Assembly today extended the tenure of the 18 temporary judges serving on the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, keeping the war crimes Court on track to meet its target of trying all defendants by the end of 2008.  The Assembly also held elections for the United Nations Economic and Social Council, filling all vacancies, except for one seat from the Eastern European States Group, after eight rounds of inconclusive voting.


The Assembly’s decision to allow the 18-member pool of short-term, or ad litem, judges to continue for a further 19 months, from May 2007 until December 2008, came after Secretary-General Kofi Annan and Tribunal President Judge Erik Mose issued a joint call for such a move to enable the Tribunal to meet the Security Council-mandated deadline, or completion strategy, of 2008.


Since the Tribunal’s Statute does not provide for extending the terms of ad litem judges, action was required by both the Assembly, as the organ that elects the Court’s judges, and the Security Council, as the Court’s parent organ.  The Council unanimously approved the extension on 13 October, with the adoption of resolution 1717 (2006).


The temporary judges, whose terms were extended today until the end of 2008, included Aydin Sefa Akay (Turkey), Florence Rita Arrey (Cameroon), Solomy Balungi Bossa (Uganda), Robert Fremr (Czech Republic), Taghrid Hikmet (Jordan), Karin Hökborg (Sweden), Vagn Joensen (Denmark), Gberdao Gustave Kam (Burkina Faso) and Tan Sri Dato’ Hj. Mohd. Azmi Dato’ Hj. Kamaruddin ( Malaysia).


Rounding out the list of short-term judges, Flavia Lattanzi ( Italy), Kenneth Machin ( United Kingdom), Joseph Edward Chiondo Masanche (United Republic of Tanzania), Lee Gacuiga Muthoga ( Kenya), Seon Ki Park ( Republic of Korea), Mparany Mamy Richard Rajohnson ( Madagascar), Emile Francis Short ( Ghana), Albertus Henricus Johannes Swart ( Netherlands) and Aura E. Guerra de Villalaz ( Panama).


Further in response to the Secretary-General’s request, the Assembly decided to allow ad litem Judges Bossa, Arrey, Lattanzi, Muthoga, Short, Hökborg, Hikmet, Kam and Park to serve in the Rwanda Tribunal beyond the cumulative period of service provided for under the Statute, also until 31 December 2008.


Then, the Assembly turned to the task of filling 20 vacancies in the 54-member Economic and Social Council.  In a by-election for the Western European and other States Group, the Assembly decided that Greece and Portugal would replace Spain and Turkey, which had announced ahead of the election they would leave their seats before the end of their respective terms, set to have continued through 31 December 2008.


Turning next to the general Economic and Social Council election, the Assembly, in one round of voting, elected 17 Member States for three-year terms.  Those were:   Algeria, Barbados, Bolivia, Canada, Cape Verde, El Salvador, Indonesia, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Malawi, Philippines, Romania, Somalia, Sudan, and the United States.  Their terms would commence on 1 January 2007, and end on 31 December 2010.


They would fill the seats vacated on 31 December 2006 by Armenia, Bangladesh, Belize, Belgium, Canada, Colombia, Indonesia, Italy, Mauritius, Namibia, Nigeria, Panama, Poland, Republic of Korea, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, United Republic of Tanzania and United States.  Canada and the United States, which were also set to vacate their seats on 31 December, were re-elected to another term.


One seat in the Group of Eastern European States remained unfilled after nine rounds of balloting, as the Assembly failed to give a two-thirds majority to Belarus or Bulgaria, and three rounds of unrestricted voting did not produce a third candidate that could muster enough votes.


As of 1 January 2007, the remaining members of the Council would be Albania, Angola, Austria, Benin, Brazil, Chad, China, Costa Rica, Cuba, Czech Republic, Denmark, Democratic Republic of the Congo, France, Germany, Greece, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, Iceland, India, Japan, Lithuania, Madagascar, Mauritania, Mexico, Pakistan, Paraguay, Portugal, Russian Federation, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Thailand, United Kingdom and the United Republic of Tanzania.


All States were elected according to the following pattern:  five from Africa, four from Asia, two from Eastern Europe, three from Latin America and the Caribbean, and four from Western European and Other States.


All the regional groups had endorsed just enough candidates to fill the available seats, with the exception of the Eastern European States, and the Latin American and Caribbean States.  Economic and Social Council elections are held by secret ballot in the Assembly.


Concluding the meeting, the Acting Assembly President, Abdullah Al-Murad, announced that the election to fill the Economic and Social Council’s vacancy in the Eastern European Group would take place on Tuesday, 7 November.  That same day, the Assembly would hold another by-election following Australia’s announcement that it would relinquish its seat in the Council in favour of New Zealand.


The Assembly will reconvene tomorrow at 10 a.m. to take up the Economic and Social Council’s annual report, as well as matters pertaining to the return of cultural property, culture of peace, the new global human order and sports and development.


Voting Results


The results of the balloting were as follows:


By-Elections


Number of ballot papers:

189

Number of invalid ballots:

5

Number of valid ballots:

184

Abstentions:

5

Required majority:

120


Number of votes obtained:


Portugal

133

Greece

129

Canada

28

Luxembourg

25

Netherlands

15

United States

15


First Round of Voting


African States


Number of ballot papers:

192

Number of invalid ballots:

0

Number of valid ballots:

192

Abstentions:

2

Required majority:

127


Number of votes obtained:


Algeria

184

Cape Verde

187

Malawi

184

Somalia

180

Sudan

170


Asian States


Number of ballot papers:

192

Number of invalid ballots:

0

Number of valid ballots:

192

Abstentions:

3

Required majority:

126


Number of votes obtained:


Indonesia

184

Iraq

181

Kazakhstan

187

Philippines

188

Myanmar

1


Eastern European States


Number of ballot papers:

192

Number of invalid ballots:

0

Number of valid ballots:

192

Abstentions:

1

Required majority:

128


Number of votes obtained:


Belarus

112

Bulgaria

123

Romania

139


Latin American and Caribbean States


Number of ballot papers:

192

Number of invalid ballots:

0

Number of valid ballots:

192

Abstentions:

0

Required majority:

128


Number of votes obtained:


Argentina

120

Barbados

160

Bolivia

138

El Salvador

133


Western European and Other States


Number of ballot papers:

192

Number of invalid ballots:

0

Number of valid ballots:

192

Abstentions:

6

Required majority:

124


Number of votes obtained:


Canada

175

Luxembourg

185

Netherlands

176

United States

168

Spain

1


The following States received the required two-thirds majority and would become members of the Council:  Algeria, Barbados, Bolivia, Canada, Cape Verde, El Salvador, Greece, Indonesia, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Malawi, Portugal, Romania, Somalia, Sudan, and the United States.


In the vote for two seats from the Eastern European States, Romania was elected to one seat after receiving the required two-thirds majority; however, one seat remained open when neither Belarus nor Bulgaria received the required two-thirds majority.  As a result, the Assembly held a special restricted ballot limited to those two Member States.


Second Round of Voting (Restricted)


Eastern European States


Number of ballot papers:

184

Number of invalid ballots:

1

Number of valid ballots:

183

Abstentions:

2

Required majority:

120


Number of votes obtained:


Belarus

90

Bulgaria

89


The restricted ballot was inconclusive, and the Assembly proceeded to a third round of restricted voting limited to Belarus and Bulgaria.


Third Round of Voting (Restricted)


Number of ballot papers:

186

Number of invalid ballots:

2

Number of valid ballots:

184

Abstentions:

3

Number of members voting:

186

Required majority:

121


Number of votes obtained:


Belarus

93

Bulgaria

88


Since the restricted ballot was inconclusive, and Belarus and Bulgaria failed to obtain the required two-thirds majority, the Assembly moved to continue with a fourth round of restricted voting, again limited to the two States.


Fourth Round of Voting (Restricted)


Number of ballot papers:

186

Number of invalid ballots:

0

Number of valid ballots:

186

Abstentions:

3

Required majority:

122


Number of votes obtained:


Belarus

99

Bulgaria

84


Since no candidate obtained the required two-thirds majority, the Assembly proceeded to a fifth round of voting, the first unrestricted, meaning the vote was open to other Member States from the regional group, except to those already holding a seat in the Economic and Social Council.


Fifth Round of Voting (Unrestricted)


Number of ballot papers:

187

Number of invalid ballots:

0

Number of valid ballots:

187

Abstentions:

2

Required majority:

124


Number of votes obtained:


Belarus

107

Bulgaria

77

Serbia

1


Since no candidate obtained the required two-thirds majority, the Assembly proceeded to a sixth round of voting (second unrestricted), and again opened the vote to other Member States from the regional group.


Sixth Round of Voting (Unrestricted)


Number of ballot papers:

186

Number of invalid ballots:

0

Number of valid ballots:

186

Abstentions:

2

Required majority:

123


Number of votes obtained:


Belarus

115

Bulgaria

67

Estonia

1

Latvia

1


Since no candidates obtained the required two-thirds majority, the Assembly moved to continue with a seventh round of voting (third unrestricted), and opened the balloting to other Member States from among the Eastern European Group, except to those already holding a seat in the ECOSOC.


Seventh Round of Voting (Unrestricted)


Number of ballot papers:

185

Number of invalid ballots:

0

Number of valid ballots:

185

Abstentions:

1

Required majority:

123


Number of votes obtained:


Belarus

120

Bulgaria

64


Since no candidate obtained the required two-thirds majority, the Assembly continued with an eighth round of voting (fourth restricted), limiting the vote only to Belarus and Bulgaria.


Eighth Round of Voting (Restricted)


Number of ballot papers:

186

Number of invalid ballots:

0

Number of valid ballots:

186

Abstentions:

1

Required majority:

124


Number of votes received:


Belarus

123

Bulgaria

62


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For information media • not an official record
For information media. Not an official record.