Security Council Extends 17 Judges’ Terms of Office at International Criminal Tribunal for Former Yugoslavia

SC/12177
22 December 2015
7593rd Meeting (AM)

Security Council Extends 17 Judges’ Terms of Office at International Criminal Tribunal for Former Yugoslavia

Russian Federation Abstains as Members Adopt Resolution 2256 (2015)

The Security Council, adopting resolution 2256 (2015) by a recorded vote of 14 in favour to none against, with 1 abstention (Russian Federation), today decided to extend the term of office for 17 permanent and ad litem judges of the Trial Chambers and the Appeals Chamber at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia.

By the text, the 15-nation body extended the terms of Jean-Claude Antonetti (France), Melville Baird (Trinidad and Tobago), O-Gon Kwon (Republic of Korea), Flavia Lattanzi (Italy), Howard Morrison (United Kingdom) and Mandiaye Niang (Senegal) until 31 March 2016 or until the completion of the cases to which they were or would be assigned.

Further by the text, the term of office was extended for Koffi Kumelio A. Afande (Togo) of the Appeals Chamber until 30 June 2016 or until the completion of the cases to which he was or would be assigned.

The Council also extended the term of office of three permanent and ad litem judges of the Trial Chambers, until 31 October 2016 or until the completion of the cases to which they were or would be assigned.  They were Burton Hall (Bahamas), Guy Delvoie (Belgium) and Antoine Kesia-Mbe Mindua (Democratic Republic of the Congo).

In addition, the Council extended the term of office of seven permanent judges of the Trial Chambers and the Appeals chamber, until 31 December 2016 or until the completion of the cases to which they were or would be assigned.  They were Carmel Agius (Malta), Liu Daqun (China), Christoph Flügge (Germany), Theodor Meron (United States), Bakone Justice Moloto (South Africa), Alphons Orie (Netherlands) and Fausto Pocar (Italy).

As well, the Council reappointed Serge Brammertz as Prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia for a term from 1 January  2016 until 31 December 2016.

The Council requested that the Office of Internal Oversight Services (OIOS) carry out an evaluation with respect to the methods and work of the Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, in the context of the implementation of the Completion Strategy pursuant to resolution 1966 (2010), and to present its report by 1 June 2016.  It also further requested that Tribunal to report on the implementation of the OIOS recommendations in its next six-monthly report to the Council.

Finally, the Council noted the views and recommendations made with regard to the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals by the Council’s Informal Working Group on International Tribunals, and requested the Mechanism to take those views into account and implement the recommendations.

Providing an overview as Chair of the Informal Working Group, Cristián Barros Melet (Chile) said the resolution included two key aspects:  the mandate extensions of the judges and Prosecutor of the Former Yugoslavia Tribunal and the launch of the review of the Residual Mechanism.  The Working Group had adopted the Council’s presidential statement S/PRST/2015/21, which offered a guide for what had mandated by resolution 1966 (2010).  A special report on the mechanism had been prepared by the Office of Internal Oversight Services (OIOS), which the Working Group considered.  On 3 December, it put together its first round of comments and questions to submit to the Mechanism.  On 17 December, the President and Prosecutor met with the Working Group in person to provide answers.  Today’s resolution contained the recommendations from that, and thus, marked the end of Chile’s work as Chair.

Evgeny Zagaynov (Russian Federation) said he had abstained, as the implementation of resolution 1966 (2010) to wind up the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia activities could not be considered “satisfactory”.  The Former Yugoslavia Tribunal had deferred the planned timeline, he said, recalling, in line with the 2003 decision, that that the Tribunal had been due to conclude five years ago.  Since the adoption of resolution 1966 (2010), there had not been any consideration of activities without the Council being informed of delays.  The mandates of judges and the Prosecutor had been extended.

He voiced regret that the extension had not produced the desired result of actionable decisions taken.  Rather, the Tribunal was up against “another round of foot-dragging”.  A first indicator of progress would be a decision in the longstanding Šešelj case, which was expected in three months.  He had taken note of the “1966 review” of the Residual Mechanism, a necessary condition for continuing the Tribunal’s work, and he urged that recommendations contained in the resolution be implemented.

The meeting began at 10:05 a.m. and ended at 10:15 a.m.

Resolution

The full text of resolution 2256 (2015) reads as follows:

The Security Council,

Reaffirming its determination to combat impunity for all those responsible for serious international crimes and the necessity of all persons indicted by the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) and the International Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) being brought to justice,

Recalling its resolutions 827 (1993) of 25 May 1993, 955 (1994) of 8 November 1994, 1503 (2003) of 28 August 2003 and 1534 (2004) of 26 March 2004, and in particular, 1966 (2010) of 22 December 2010, which inter alia established the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals (‘the Mechanism’),

Taking into account the assessments by the ICTY and the ICTR in their Completion Strategy Reports (S/2015/874 and S/2015/884), and the updated trial and appeals schedules,

Welcoming the arrest in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (‘DRC’) on 8 December 2015 of Ladislas Ntaganzwa, indicted by the ICTR, while noting with concern that many genocide suspects continue to elude justice, including the remaining eight fugitives indicted by the ICTR,

Taking note of the letter to the President of the Council from the Secretary-General dated 28 October 2015 (S/2015/825), attaching a letter from the President of the ICTY dated 1 October 2015,

Noting also the concerns expressed by the President of the ICTY about staffing, and reaffirming that staff retention is essential for the most expeditious completion of the ICTY’s work,

Recalling also its previous resolutions on the extension of the terms of office of the permanent and ad litem judges of the ICTY, who are members of the Trial Chambers and the Appeals Chamber,

Further recalling its resolution 2193 (2014) adopted on 18 December 2014,

Having regard to Article 16 of the Statute of the ICTY,

Having considered the nomination by the Secretary-General to reappoint Mr. Serge Brammertz as Prosecutor of the ICTY (S/2015/969),

Taking note of the regular report on the progress of the work of the Mechanism dated 17 November 2015 (S/2015/883),

Further noting with concern that the Mechanism faces problems in the relocation of acquitted persons and convicted persons who have completed serving their sentences, and emphasizing the importance of the successful relocation of such persons,

Noting the referral of cases of Laurent Bucyibaruta, Wenceslas Munyeshyaka, Jean Uwinkindi and Bernard Munyagishari to national jurisdictions, pursuant to Rule 11 bis of the Rules of Procedure and Evidence of the ICTR, and emphasizing the importance of continuing monitoring progress in referred cases, as well as the goal of achieving the completion of all referred cases at the earliest possible time,

Further noting that the initial period of the operation of the Mechanism, as set out by resolution 1966 (2010), ends on 30 June 2016, and that the Mechanism shall continue to operate for subsequent periods of two years following a review by the Council of the progress of its work, unless the Council decides otherwise,

Recalling its review of the progress of the work of the Mechanism, including in completing its functions, pursuant to paragraph 17 of resolution 1966 (2010) and carried out in accordance with the procedure set out in the statement of its President of 16 November 2015 (S/PRST/2015/21), including the report of the Mechanism on the progress of its work in the initial period, dated 20 November 2015 (S/2015/896),

Acting under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations,

“1.   Welcomes the completion of the judicial work of the ICTR following delivery of its last judgment on 14 December 2015, and the impending closure of the ICTR set for 31 December 2015;

“2.   Acknowledges the substantial contribution of the ICTR to the process of national reconciliation and the restoration of peace and security, and to the fight against impunity and the development of international criminal justice, especially in relation to the crime of genocide;

“3.   Reiterates its request to the ICTY to complete its work and facilitate the closure of the Tribunal as expeditiously as possible with the aim of completing the transition to the Mechanism, and expresses its continued concern over repeated delays in the conclusion of the Tribunal’s work, in light of resolution 1966 (2010), which requested the Tribunal to complete its trial and appeals proceedings by 31 December 2014;

“4.   Underlines that States should cooperate fully with the ICTY, as well as with the Mechanism;

“5.   Decides to extend the term of office of the following permanent and ad litem judges at the ICTY, who are members of the Trial Chambers and the Appeals Chamber, until 31 March 2016 or until the completion of the cases to which they are or will be assigned, if sooner:

Jean-Claude Antonetti (France)
Melville Baird (Trinidad and Tobago)
O-Gon Kwon (Republic of Korea)
Flavia Lattanzi (Italy)
Howard Morrison (United Kingdom)
Mandiaye Niang (Senegal)

“6.   Decides to extend the term of office of the following permanent judge at the ICTY, who is a member of the Appeals Chamber, until 30 June 2016 or until the completion of the cases to which he is or will be assigned, if sooner:

Koffi Kumelio A. Afande (Togo)

“7.   Decides to extend the term of office of the following permanent and ad litem judges at the ICTY, who are members of the Trial Chambers, until 31 October 2016 or until the completion of the cases to which they are or will be assigned, if sooner:

Burton Hall (The Bahamas)
Guy Delvoie (Belgium)
Antoine Kesia-Mbe Mindua (Democratic Republic of Congo)

“8.   Decides to extend the terms of office of the following permanent judges at the ICTY, who are members of the Trial Chambers and the Appeals Chamber, until 31 December 2016 or until the completion of the cases to which they are or will be assigned, if sooner:

Carmel Agius (Malta)
Liu Daqun (China)
Christoph Flügge (Germany)
Theodor Meron (United States of America)
Bakone Justice Moloto (South Africa)
Alphons Orie (The Netherlands)
Fausto Pocar (Italy)

“9.   Decides to reappoint Mr. Serge Brammertz as Prosecutor of the ICTY, notwithstanding the provisions of Article 16, paragraph 4, of the Statute of the ICTY related to the length of the term office of the Prosecutor, for a term with effect from 1 January 2016 until 31 December 2016, which is subject to earlier termination by the Security Council upon the completion of the work of the ICTY;

“10.  Renews its call on the ICTY, in light of resolution 1966 (2010), to redouble its efforts to review its projected case completion dates with a view towards shortening them as appropriate and to prevent any additional delays;

“11.  Requests the Office of Internal Oversight Services (OIOS) to carry out an evaluation with respect to the methods and work of the ICTY, in the context of the implementation of the Completion Strategy pursuant to resolution 1966 (2010), and to present its report by 1 June 2016, and further requests the ICTY to report on implementation of any OIOS recommendations in its next six-monthly report thereafter to the Council on progress towards implementation of the ICTY Completion Strategy;

“12. Commends States that have accepted the relocation of acquitted persons or convicted persons who have completed serving their sentences to their territories, and reiterates its call upon all States to cooperate with and render all necessary assistance to the Mechanism, for increased efforts towards the relocation of acquitted persons and convicted persons who have completed serving their sentences;

“13. Urges all States, especially States where fugitives are suspected to be at large, to intensify their cooperation with and render all necessary assistance to the Mechanism, in particular to achieve the arrest and surrender of all remaining fugitives indicted by the ICTR as soon as possible;

“14. Urges the DRC to transfer Ladislas Ntaganzwa for trial without delay or conditions;

“15. Urges the Mechanism to continue monitoring the cases of Laurent Bucyibaruta, Wenceslas Munyeshyaka, Jean Uwinkindi and Bernard Munyagishari, which were referred to national jurisdictions;

“16. Emphasizes that, in view of the substantially reduced nature of the residual functions, the Mechanism was established to be a small, temporary and efficient structure, whose functions and size will diminish over time, with a small number of staff commensurate with its reduced functions, and, recognizing in this regard the full commitment to these elements expressed by the Mechanism, urges the Mechanism to continue to be guided in its activities by these elements;

“17. Welcomes the report (S/2015/896) and supplementary information submitted by the Mechanism to the Council pursuant to its Presidential Statement (S/PRST/2015/21) for the purposes of the review of the progress of the work of the Mechanism, including in completing its functions, as required by paragraph 17 of resolution 1966 (2010) of 22 December 2010;

“18. Takes note of the work of the Mechanism to date, in particular development of a legal and regulatory framework, procedures, and working practices consistent with the Statute of the Mechanism and drawing on lessons learned from and best practices of the ICTY and ICTR and of other tribunals, including its implementation of the double-hatting of personnel, use of rosters to ensure judges and staff are utilized only when required, enabling judges and staff to work remotely to the maximum extent possible, and minimizing the need for full bench participation in pre-trial and pre-appeal hearing work, in order to produce substantial reductions in the costs of judicial activities compared to those of the ICTY and ICTR, and commends the Mechanism for its efforts to produce such reductions;

“19.  Notes further the views and recommendations made with regard to the Mechanism’s work by the Council’s Informal Working Group on International Tribunals, as reflected in this resolution, and requests the Mechanism to take into account those views and implement the recommendations, and to continue to take steps, such as those referred to in paragraph 18, to further enhance efficiency and effective and transparent management, in particular full implementation of the outstanding recommendations of the OIOS; production of more focused projections of completion timelines and disciplined adherence thereto, including by making the best use of the diverse approaches of common law and civil law systems; enhancement of the geographic diversity and gender balance of staff, while ensuring continued professional expertise; implementation of a human resources policy consistent with its temporary mandate; and further reduction of costs, including through, but not limited to, flexible staff engagement;

“20.  Further requests the Mechanism to include in its six monthly reports to the Council information on progress achieved in implementing this resolution, as well as detailed information on the staffing of the Mechanism, respective workload and related costs with breakdown by division and detailed projections of the duration of residual functions based on available data;

“21. Further notes the conclusion of the Council’s review of the progress of the work of the Mechanism, including in completing its functions, during its initial period, pursuant to resolution 1966 (2010);

“22.  Recalls, with a view to strengthening independent oversight of the Mechanism, that, as set out in its Presidential Statement of 16 November 2015 (S/PRST/2015/21), future reviews carried out pursuant to paragraph 17 of resolution 1966 (2010) shall include evaluation reports sought from the OIOS with respect to the methods and work of the Mechanism;

“23.  Encourages the Mechanism and the Government of Rwanda to collaborate on matters related to the legacy of the ICTR with respect to reconciliation and justice in Rwanda, including in respect of access to archives;

“24. Decides to remain seized of the matter.”

For information media. Not an official record.