12 December 2008


12 December 2008
Security Council
Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

Security Council

6041st Meeting (AM)

impunity ‘not an option’, Security Council told in briefing on completion

strategies of international tribunals for former yugoslavia, rwanda


Members Hear from Chair of Informal Working Group, Top Tribunal Officials

Impunity was not an option for the most senior fugitives responsible for genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity, and they must face international trial, Olivier Belle ( Belgium), Chair of the Security Council’s Informal Working Group on International Tribunals, said today.

As the Council heard several briefings on the work of the International Criminal Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and for Rwanda, Mr. Belle said there had also been early agreement within the Working Group that the transfer of cases involving mid- or lower-level indictees to national jurisdictions was an important part of the Tribunals’ completion strategies.  Other areas of agreement were the importance of continuing witness and victim protection and United Nations control of the Tribunals’ archives, which were the property of the Organization.

He said the Working Group had made significant progress on establishing a residual mechanism to carry out certain essential functions of the Tribunals after their mandates expired.  It might carry out such functions as the trial of fugitives, supervision of sentences, review of judgements, referral to national jurisdictions, proceedings for contempt, prevention of double jeopardy, defence counsel and legal aid issues, claims for compensation, public information and capacity-building, and human resources issues.

The Council also heard briefings by the Presidents and the Prosecutors of the two Tribunals on progress made in the trials of those accused of genocide and crimes against humanity, as well as the implementation of the Tribunals’ completion strategy and the safeguarding of their legacy.

Patrick Robinson, President of the International Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, stressed the importance of cooperation with the Tribunal in apprehending indicted persons, saying that if fugitives still at large were arrested now, the Tribunal could avoid the need to retain the capacity to try a high-level accused.  The international community should focus on securing the immediate arrest of the remaining fugitives as a matter of urgency.  Other trials had suffered delays resulting from difficulty in securing necessary evidence from States in the former Yugoslavia.

He said that the Tribunal’s completion strategy -– requiring it to finish trials of first instance by 2009 -- did not anticipate the sacrifice of the principles of fair trial and the rights of the accused.  While the Tribunal was still on track to complete most of its trials during 2009, a number would continue into the first part of 2010, which would also affect the dates for appeals, a small number of which would were thus likely to spill over into 2012.

Dennis Byron, President of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, noted that most of the projections he had made in June 2008 had been achieved.  Instead of the decreased workload that might have been expected with the Tribunal moving towards the completion of its mandate, however, the Tribunal was now confronted with as many as 10 new cases.  At the same time, it was faced with the resignation of judges.

“We want to achieve our goals, and the workload ahead makes it clear that ‘business as usual’ is not an option”, he said.  Unfortunately, no new arrests could be reported for the 13 remaining fugitives still at large.  With the end of the Tribunal’s mandate approaching, the Tribunal reiterated its strong call for Member States to cooperate fully to ensure the arrest and transfer of at-large fugitives as soon as possible.  The end of the mandate should not signal that they were safe from justice.

Serge Brammertz, Prosecutor of the Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, and Hassan B. Jallow, Prosecutor of the Rwanda Tribunal, briefed Council members on first-instance and appeal cases in progress, referrals to national jurisdiction, and cooperation by States in granting access to archives and transferring needed documents to the Tribunals.  Despite efforts to speed up trials and appeals, there would be delays in current and future proceedings due to recent arrests and other factors.  Current staff levels were required through 2009 and, without the retention of that level of resources, it would be extremely difficult to complete the remaining trials and appeals.

In the ensuing debate, speakers urged the Tribunals to continue on the path of the completion strategy as expeditiously as possible, and called for the provision of the material and human resources necessary to enable them to complete their mandate, while guaranteeing the fairness of their proceedings.

Addressing the question of the Tribunals’ legacy, speakers stressed that, with the end of their mandates approaching, fugitives should not be awarded impunity.  Any international mechanism carrying out their residual functions must remain within the United Nations and it must be small, efficient and temporary.

Tharcisse Karugarama, Attorney-General and Minister for Justice of Rwanda, responded to decisions by Tribunal judges to deny the referral of accused persons to his country’s national jurisdiction by saying that the inadequacies of Rwanda’s legal and judicial system were common to all systems and were not insurmountable.  Rwanda urged the judges to re-examine their decisions, which had the effect of undermining the trust and confidence that the country had built so painstakingly.  The Tribunal’s rejection of requests for referral amounted to an invitation to States not to cooperate with Rwanda any more.

The representative of Bosnia and Herzegovina said the Tribunal’s work remained crucial in advancing the cause of justice in her country, as well as others in the region.  It was important that the Tribunal leave a legacy for the future of international criminal justice, reaffirming the very idea that there could be no reconciliation without justice, no justice without law, and no meaningful law without a court to decide what was just and lawful.  Bosnia and Herzegovina continued cooperating fully in securing justice for victims and their families.

Serbia’s representative said his country’s efforts to comply with its legal and moral obligations, as well as the difficulties it had encountered in offering its cooperation, had been recognized, illustrating a growing belief in Serbia’s political will and resolve to apprehend Ratko Mladic and Goran Hadzic, the two remaining fugitives indicted by the Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia.

Also speaking today were the representatives of France, United States, Libya, Italy, Panama, Burkina Faso, Viet Nam, Indonesia, Russian Federation, United Kingdom, South Africa, Costa Rica, China, Croatia, and Kenya.

The meeting began at 10:25 a.m. and ended at 1:40 p.m.


Council members had before them a letter dated 21 November 2008 (document S/2008/729) from the President of the International Tribunal for the Prosecution of Persons Responsible for Serious Violations of International Humanitarian Law Committed in the Territory of the Former Yugoslavia since 1991.  Addressed to the President of the Security Council, it transmits assessments by the President and Prosecutor of the Tribunal, and five “enclosures” indicating the status of cases dealt with during the reporting period 16 May to 11 November.

During those six months, the letter states, the Tribunal has pursued efforts to meet its completion strategy targets and further streamline its proceedings in full compliance with due process standards.  Slippages foreseen in the schedules are, for the most part, explained by the late arrests of two fugitives:  Stojan Zupljanin, former head of the Serb-operated Regional Security Services Centre, and Radovan Karadzic, former President of the Republica Srpska.  Their trials should be completed in 2010 and appeals were, thus, unlikely to be concluded in 2011.

In that regard, the Tribunal President stresses the importance of the immediate arrest of the two remaining fugitives:  Ratko Mladic, former Commander of the Bosnian Serb Army, and Goran Hadzic, former President of the Serbian Autonomous District of Slavonia Baranja and Western Srem. The Tribunal calls for the Council’s support for the retention of its most qualified judges and staff, and for continued assistance for the domestic judicial institutions of the former Yugoslavia, which are crucial partners in strengthening the rule of law in the region.

Describing the Tribunal as the most successful international criminal institution established thus far -- having indicted 161 individuals and completed proceedings for 116 of them –- the letter states that the Office of the Prosecutor has made considerable progress in completing its mandate by advancing the multi-leadership cases, narrowing the scope of prosecutions, and presenting evidence more efficiently.  State cooperation has improved, but outstanding issues remain, notably those concerning the production of documents and the arrest of fugitives, both of which have a bearing on the completion schedule.

Council members also had before them a letter dated 21 November 2008 (document S/2008/726) from the President of the International Criminal Tribunal for the Prosecution of Persons Responsible for Genocide and Other Serious Violations of International Humanitarian Law Committed in the Territory of Rwanda and Rwandan Citizens Responsible for Genocide and Other Such Violations Committed in the Territory of Neighbouring States between 1 January and 31 December 1994.  It contains assessments by the President and Prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda of the implementation of the completion strategy for the institution.

The report states that the Tribunal is in a difficult phase, with its current and upcoming workload exceptionally high and recent developments showing that it will probably increase much more than expected in 2009.  That is due, in particular, to the denied referral of cases to Rwanda.  Whether the goal of completing first-instance trials by the end of 2009 can ultimately be achieved will depend on the final number of new cases that the Tribunal will try next year.  The goals of the completion strategy can only be achieved if adequate resources are provided.

Noting that the referral of cases to national jurisdictions has been an essential element of the completion strategy from the beginning, the letter says the recent decisions of the Appeal Chamber confirming the denial of referral of the Munyakazi and Kanyarugika cases to Rwanda could have a significant impact on the strategy.  In view of the remaining pending requests for referrals to Rwanda, this could mean, ultimately, that up to four additional new trials would need to be held in Arusha.  Current projections already establish a contingency plan for this potential line of events, but further adjustments will be required depending on the concrete number of new cases.

The President concludes by emphasizing that the continued support of Member States remains indispensable for the Tribunal to achieve its mandate, for cooperation in regard to arrests, transfers, referrals and enforcement of sentences, and for ensuring that adequate resources enable the Tribunal successfully to pursue the completion goals.


PATRICK ROBINSON, Judge and President of the International Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, said that if fugitives still at large were arrested now, the Tribunal could avoid the need to retain the capacity of trying a high-level accused.  The international community should focus its efforts on securing the immediate arrest of the remaining fugitives as a matter of urgency.  Other trials had suffered delays resulting from difficulty in securing necessary evidence from States in the former Yugoslavia.

He said that the completion strategy, while requiring the Tribunal to conclude its cases as expeditiously as possible, did not anticipate that the principles of fair trial and the rights of the accused should be sacrificed.  It had, therefore, become necessary to seek an extension of the terms of three ad litem judges.  While delays were a cause for concern, the Tribunal had indicted 161 persons, and fully concluded proceedings in 116 of them, a clear demonstration of efficiency.  Only five cases remained to be started, four of which involved late arrests.  The Tribunal had continued to utilize a host of procedural innovations to streamline proceedings -- admitting adjudicated facts and evidence in writing, reducing the scope of indictments, and imposing time limits on the presentation of both prosecution and defence cases.

The Appeals Chamber had been equally efficient, delivering final judgement in four appeals, one contempt judgement, and one review decision, he said.  There were currently six appeals from judgement and one request for review pending before that Chamber.  While the Tribunal was still on track to complete most of its trials during 2009, a number would continue into the first part of 2010, which would also affect the dates for appeals, a small number of which would thus likely to spill over into 2012.  However, there was a need for vigilance to ensure that the closing stages should not witness a diminution of the Tribunal’s high standards.  There was a real danger that, without incentives, highly and uniquely qualified legal staff might be lost.

He said he intended also to pursue and strengthen the Tribunal’s partnership with local judiciaries, noting that 13 accused had been referred to jurisdictions in the former Yugoslavia.  The Referral Bench continued to monitor referred cases and was satisfied thus far that they were being conducted in full compliance with international norms of due process.  However, the Appeals Chamber had ultimately decided not to refer the case of Lukic and Lukic.

Emphasizing that judges and prosecutors in the former Yugoslavia had a crucial role to play in the development of a peaceful society based on the rule of law, he said they must, therefore, continue to receive assistance and support.  The Tribunal was actively involved in capacity-building efforts, with a focus on such key areas as the facilitation of trial coverage by local media, community outreach, and capacity-building efforts with national judicial institutions addressing war crimes.  A number of projects had been undertaken to identify best practices, and the Tribunal was also cooperating with the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE).  Another urgent matter was devising an appropriate mechanism to address residual issues, a key item on the agenda of the Council’s Working Group on Ad Hoc International Tribunals.

He said in conclusion:  “I represent an institution that, as the first international tribunal since the International Military Tribunals of Nuremburg and Tokyo, has been the most significant actor in the development of international criminal law and the enforcement of international humanitarian law.”  The Tribunal had judiciously used its rule-making power to devise a comprehensive framework of rules of procedure and evidence that had already become the template for use in other kindred tribunals.  More than any other body, it had contributed to the development of a corpus of law that had eliminated impunity and entrenched the doctrine of individual criminal responsibility in the field of international law.

“Few would have imagined, only 20 years ago, that it would have been possible to bring before an international tribunal, high-level individuals, including Heads of State, accused of the most heinous crimes”, he said, adding that the Tribunal could be justifiably proud of its achievements.  Nonetheless, there was cause for deep concern that, as its work drew towards its final stages, the Tribunal should remain sufficiently resourced to discharge its mandate.  “I, therefore, implore you today, members of the Security Council and the international community:  give the Tribunal the support it needs to enable it to discharge its historic role.”

DENNIS BYRON, Judge and President of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, noted that most of the projections he had made in June 2008 had been achieved.  Four judgements –- three single-accused cases and one multi-accused case -- would have been delivered by the end of the year.  In addition, he had delivered four decisions on requests for referral to national jurisdictions and one more would be rendered later in December.  Trial Chamber I had focused on drafting a judgement in a huge and complex case involving four military leaders, Bagasora et al, judgement in which would be delivered on 18 December.  The Chamber had also rendered two decisions denying requests for referral.  Judgements in Renzaho and Nsengimana would be delivered in the first half of 2009 and the completion of the evidence phase in the Setako case was scheduled for May.

Also as projected for 2008, Trial Chamber II had closed the evidence in three multi-accused cases involving 14 accused in total, he continued, noting, however, that unforeseen legal complications had made it necessary to recall some witnesses in Butare and Military II in early 2009.  The same Trial Bench that had focused on completing the evidence in that case would deliver the judgement in Rukundo during the first part of 2009.  Trial Chamber III had delivered judgements in the cases of Nchamihigo and Bikindi and would rule in the Zigiranyairazo case on 18 December.  In addition, it would have rendered two decisions on requests for deferral by the end of the year.  The progress of the fifth multi-accused case, Karemera et al, had been affected by the deteriorating health of one co-accused.  The Chamber was managing the procedural issues resulting from those medical problems, and the trial was scheduled to resume in early February.  Only two trial weeks remained in the Kalimanzira case and the evidence would be completed in the first week of February.

The preparation of each judgement required long deliberations and other work outside the courtrooms, he continued, pointing out 2009 would be a particularly challenging year.  The workload ahead was greater than at any other point in the Tribunal’s history.  Proceedings might start in up to 10 new cases, including five that could not have been included in the planning last June.  The calendar had scheduled the evidence phase of all new trials to be completed before the end of 2009.  New cases included the trials of three persons arrested in 2007 and 2008, a retrial ordered by the Appeals Chamber, and a contempt of court case.  But the main factor straining the Tribunal’s capacity was the denial of the Prosecutor’s requests to refer one case to Norway and four cases to Rwanda for trial.  Those referrals formed an integral part of the completion strategy and the Prosecutor continued to investigate the extent to which new requests for referrals could be pursued.

Instead of the decreased workload that might have been expected with the Tribunal moving towards the completion of its mandate, it was now confronted with as many as 10 new cases, he said.  At the same time, it was faced with the resignation of two permanent judges and one ad litem judge by the end of 2008.  Additionally, four permanent judges and one ad litem judge had announced their intention to resign after the delivery of judgements in their current cases.  It would, therefore, be critical to appoint at least four new ad litem judges to replace those seven judges not available for new cases.  Only three permanent judges remained to take on new cases.  A proposal had been submitted for an amendment to the relevant Statute so as to allow Chambers to be composed entirely of ad litem judges.

“We want to achieve our goals, and the workload ahead makes it clear that ‘business as usual’ is not an option”, he said.  The Tribunal’s organs were closely working together in taking new steps to address staffing needs and further develop tools for expediting proceedings, while fully respecting the right of the accused to a fair trial.  The long-standing issue of transferring convicted persons for the enforcement of their sentences was currently being addressed for a first group of convicts, following confidential orders.  The Tribunal was also grateful to have found a relocation State for one acquitted person.  One more acquitted person remained in Arusha, and one convict would be released in December, having served his sentence.  Both were waiting for a willing State to accept their relocation.  Two accused arrested last year had been successfully transferred to Arusha.  Unfortunately, however, no new arrests could be reported for the 13 remaining fugitives still at large.  With the end of the Tribunal’s mandate close, it reiterated its strong call for Member States to cooperate fully in order to ensure their arrest and transfer as soon as possible.

On the Tribunal’s legacy, he said that, following the visit by the Council’s Working Group in September, intense work was going on to develop the mechanism that would take on residual tasks after its mandate expired.  As for the support of the Council, the Secretariat and Member States, “our close cooperation shows that we all, on a national and international level, are committed to denying impunity to those responsible for the horrendous crimes committed in Rwanda in 1994.  We shall continue to improve this cooperation until we have closed all safe havens that may still exist for the perpetrators”.  However, the end of the mandate should not signal that they were safe from justice.  Until its closing, the Tribunal would do everything in its power to deliver on its commitments.

SERGE BRAMMERTZ, Prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, said the Tribunal was currently prosecuting 26 individuals in seven trials, but the arrest of Mladic and Hadzic remained the highest priority.  All cases under prosecution involved senior political and military figures.  In one case, the trial was awaiting judgement, and in two others, the prosecution phase was complete.  The multiple-accused trials could be considered major achievements and vindication of the use of joinder as one of the key pillars of the Tribunal’s completion strategy.

The appeals work of the Prosecutor’s Office continued apace, he said, adding that it was currently working on 10 active appeals with a marked increase in the caseload expected in the second half of 2009 following the trial judgements of the multiple-accused cases.  An overall inventory of more than 23 appeal cases was expected.  The Office had also conducted a number of important contempt cases, involving the divulgation of information about and interference with protected witnesses.  The problem of witness intimidation remained a concern.

He said that, in order to succeed in completing the trial and appeals programme, there would be heavy reliance on cooperation from the States of the former Yugoslavia and the support of the international community.  Cooperation remained critical in the areas of:  access to archives, access to and protection of witnesses, and the arrest and transfer of the remaining fugitives.  Bosnia and Herzegovina continued to grant access to Government archives, and the authorities in that country were encouraged to adopt a proactive approach to investigating and prosecuting those who supported fugitives.

Although Croatia had responded to most requests for assistance, the Prosecutor’s Office continued to seek access to key documents and archives in the Gotovina case, he said.  The Trial Chamber had ordered Croatia to provide a detailed report specifying efforts to obtain the documents.  Croatia had provided that report and additional papers, but key documents remained unaccounted for.  It was crucial that they be made available immediately.

The assistance provided by Serbia in terms of access to archives and the provision of documents had improved, he said, adding, however, that further cooperation was needed to obtain information relating to certain important missing documents.  The Prosecutor’s Office also continued to seek access to certain key military documents in the Perisic trial.  The most critical area of cooperation remained the apprehension of fugitives.  The arrests of Zupjlanin and Karadzic had been important milestones in Serbia’s cooperation, and the agencies in charge of tracking fugitives had stepped up efforts to locate and apprehend Mladic and Hadzic.  During a visit to Belgrade in November, the authorities had presented their action plan in that regard.

The transfer of investigative case files and materials to competent national jurisdictions and efforts to strengthen the capacity of national jurisdictions remained key components of the completion strategy, he said.  The Prosecutor’s Office had responded to a total of 57 requests for assistance from authorities in the former Yugoslavia and continued to support national efforts to deal with war crimes cases.  International support to national courts would remain crucial in the coming months and years.  The Prosecutor’s Office strongly supported the improvement of judicial cooperation between States in the region.  Due to obstacles preventing extradition and legal barriers precluding the transfer of war crimes proceedings between those States, there was a danger that many lower-level and mid-level perpetrators of war crimes would evade justice.  To address that impunity gap, those issues should be addressed urgently by all authorities concerned.

He said that, despite efforts to speed up trials and appeals, there would be delays in current and future proceedings due to recent arrests, sickness on the part of accused persons, changes in defence counsel, and the slowing of proceedings when accused persons elected to represent themselves.  Current staff levels were required through 2009, and without the retention of that level of resources, it would be extremely difficult to complete the Tribunal’s remaining trials and appeals.  A revised budget had, therefore, been submitted.  The Prosecutor’s Office requested that the downsizing process relating to staffing for trials should not take place before the end of 2009 and into 2010.

HASSAN B. JALLOW, Prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, reported that, in the past six months, judgements resulting in convictions had been delivered in respect of two accused, and judgements were anticipated in respect of five others next week (Bagosora et al and Zigiranyirazo).  A significant development had been the recent conclusion of all the multi-accused cases, with the exception of Karemera et al -– involving some 14 accused persons.  The long-running Butare case had come to a close in November after seven-and-a- half years of trial; the Government case after five years of trial; and the Military II case after five years of trial.  Those cases were now pending judgement subject to the possible recall of some witnesses.  Two more cases had commenced and were progressing, and two indictees -– Augustin Ngirabatware and Dominique Ntakuriyayo -- had been transferred to the Tribunal during that period.

He said the cases of all detainees were being prepared to ensure that their trials proceeded in 2009, in accordance with the trial schedule.  The Office of the Prosecutor was firmly committed to the conclusion of those remaining trials in the course of 2009, an achievable target.  Despite the heightened activity of the Tracking Team, no arrests had been secured in the past six months and there was no indication of any steps taken by the Government of Kenya -– other than the earlier seizure of one property -– to implement the recommendation of the Tribunal-Kenya Police Joint Task Force or the Tribunal’s requests in respect of the person and property of Felicien Kabuga.  The Secretary-General had referred that matter to the Security Council in June 2008.

He said he had held consultations in September 2008, with both the United Nations Organization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUC) and Government officials in Kinshasa regarding the arrest and transfer to Arusha of some half a dozen indictees sheltering in that country’s territory.  The discussions with the Congolese Government had been very positive and encouraging, but the recent round of conflict in the eastern part of the country had set back the tracking and arrest programme.  The Tribunal continued to appeal to the Council to call on all States to cooperate in the arrest and transfer of those indicted persons and for appropriate support to enable the Congolese Government to discharge its obligations.  The demands of peace and justice converged very strongly in the case of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, where the continuing presence and activities of fugitives contributed greatly to conflict and instability.

Despite the importance of referring cases to national jurisdictions for trial, the implementation of that programme had suffered a number of setbacks, he said.  The Prosecutor had requested the referral of five cases to Rwanda, but the Trial Chamber had rejected requests in respect of four detainees, including the Prosecutor’s appeals in the cases of Yusuf Munyakazi, Kanyarukiga and Idelfonse Hategekimana.  The Appeals Chamber, while acknowledging the independence and impartiality of the Rwandan judiciary, had upheld the rejection, essentially out of concerns that the defence might be impeded by the possible reluctance of defence witnesses to travel to Rwanda to testify, and that defence witnesses might face security problems in that country.  As a result, the cases of those four detainees, as well as those of 13 fugitives, would all now fall back within the Tribunal’s workload, unless alternative arrangements for trial were made.

However, that setback had not closed the door on the referral strategy, he said.  A series of consultations had been held with a view to identifying measures that Rwanda could take to meet the concerns of the judges.  The measures having been identified, both parties had agreed that once they were implemented, the Prosecutor would consider submitting new requests for referral early in 2009.  A successful referral programme would reduce the Tribunal’s workload and facilitate implementation of the completion strategy.  It would also enable the Tribunal to refer the cases of fugitives and thus end 2009 without any fugitives on its list.  In addition, it could facilitate the extradition of cases from other countries to Rwanda.

He recalled that in his last report to the Council he had indicated that, following investigations by the Prosecutor’s Office and Rwanda into allegations against members of the Rwanda Patriotic Front, the Rwandan Prosecutor-General had decided to indict four senior military officers for murder and other war crimes in connection with the killings of several clergy in Kabgayi Parish in June 1994.  The trial had proceeded in open court and on 24 October the military tribunal in Kigali had convicted two of them, sentencing them to eight years in prison and acquitting the other two.  The Military Prosecutor had appealed against the acquittal and the Tribunal was awaiting the outcome of those proceedings.

The next six months would be a period of intense trial activity, he said.  “We are all committed to concluding the trials of the detainees currently at hand and to making referral a success to enable us deal with the cases of some detainees, as well as the fugitives.”  The Tribunal did not underestimate the challenge of doing so, particularly at a time when, with completion in sight, it continued to lose critical staff at a difficult time.  Since January 2008, the Prosecutor’s Office had lost about 20 per cent of its staff and many more might leave due to uncertainty about the future.  The adoption of measures to provide incentives to staff whose services were critical seemed all the more urgent now.

OLIVIER BELLE ( Belgium) welcomed the substantial progress noted by Prosecutor Brammertz concerning the cooperation of the Serbian authorities and encouraged that country, as well as other States concerned, to enhance their cooperation with the Tribunals, in particular with a view to arresting fugitives.  Cooperation should result from a general commitment and not just limited and sporadic progress.  It was regrettable that some form of pressure was sometimes needed in order for cooperation to progress.

Updating the Council on the activities of its Informal Working Group on international Tribunals, which Belgium had chaired in 2008, he said significant progress had been made in establishing a residual mechanism, or mechanisms, to carry out certain essential functions of the Tribunals after their closure.  A more detailed account could be found in a letter to be circulated as an official Council document.  The Working Group had convened 29 meetings in 2008, holding discussions informed by the joint paper produced by the Tribunals in March 2007 and revised in September 2007.  There had been considerable dialogue between the Working Group and the Tribunals throughout the year, by means of letters, meetings and videoconferences, and by the Working Group’s visits to each Tribunal at the end of September.

He said the Working Group had heard a briefing by Justice Richard Goldstone, Chair of the Advisory Committee on Archives, established by the Registrars of the Tribunals to advise on the possible location of archives and related issues.  The Committee’s report had been received late in the year for the Working Group to consider them in any detail.  The Working Group had also held informal consultations with the “jurisdiction States” -- Rwanda and the countries of the former Yugoslavia.  Views had also been exchanged with the Registrar of the Special Court for Sierra Leone.  From around June, the focus of discussions had moved to elements for a possible Council resolution, drafted by the Belgian delegation with the assistance of the United Nations Office of Legal Affairs.  The draft had become the basis of discussions and had passed two readings, leading to three successive versions.  While many elements of the text draft had been agreed, significant areas of difference remained.

The functions that might need to be carried out by the residual mechanism, he said, included:  the trial of fugitives; protection of witnesses; supervision of sentences; review of judgements; referral to national jurisdictions; proceedings for contempt; prevention of double jeopardy; defence counsel and legal aid issues; claims for compensation; public information and capacity-building; and human resources issues.  The Working Group had discussed each of those possible residual functions, identifying questions for the Tribunals and considering the answers provided.  It had been agreed early that impunity was unacceptable and that fugitives must face trial; that the most senior fugitives, those most responsible, must face international trial by the residual mechanism; that the transfer of cases involving mid- or lower-level indicted persons to national jurisdictions was an important part of the Tribunals’ completion strategies; that continuing witness and victim protection was of critical importance; and that the Tribunals’ archives were the property of the United Nations and must be kept under its control.

He said further discussions on the basis of three successive Chairman’s drafts of the possible Council resolution had largely identified the structure of the possible residual mechanism and the need for it to continue the legal personality of the Tribunals, although some important differences in views remained to be discussed further, in addition to issues not yet considered in any detail, in particular the question of the archives.  The Council was urged to seize the momentum generated during 2008 to continue with the discussions on the basis of the draft, so that progress could be made in the first months of 2009.  A great deal of progress had been made, and the outstanding questions, although not yet answered, had been clearly identified.  With sufficient common ground and political will, a consensus resolution was well within grasp.


JEAN-PIERRE LACROIX ( France) said it should be acknowledged that the trials before the Tribunals could not be completed before 2009, nor their work before 2012, even though the Tribunals were working as fast as they could.  Everything must be done to complete the completion strategy, but it was vital to ensure fair trials.  It was to be hoped that the Tribunals would have the additional capacities needed to fulfil the completion strategy.  Although it was too early to make up a final balance, it could be said that the Tribunals had done what the Council wished them to do and that impunity had been rejected.  Jurisprudence had been established.

However, the Tribunals’ work would not be complete until all accused and all fugitives had faced trial, he said, expressing the hope that the positive comments made about cooperation with Serbia would continue so that all remaining fugitives could be arrested.  France called on Kenya to do its utmost to arrest and transfer Kabuga to Arusha.  It would not be acceptable for the Tribunal to close if that would mean impunity for accused persons at large.  The residual mechanism to be established should address that matter.  It should be within the United Nations, be small in size, of a temporary nature and efficient.  Among its tasks should be the protection of witnesses, the management of archives and the overview of sentences.  It was to be hoped that the Working Group would move quickly to resolve outstanding issues.

ROSEMARY DICARLO ( United States) said her delegation recognized the many accomplishments of the Tribunals and urged them to implement their completion strategies.  The United States also noted the difficulties faced by the Rwanda Tribunal in transferring cases to national jurisdictions and urged the international community to reaffirm its commitment to strengthening the country’s domestic jurisdiction.  Fugitives must be brought to justice and the international community could not allow them to escape on the grounds that the Tribunals’ mandates had been completed.  It was important to work towards the arrest of all fugitives indicted by both Tribunals.

She said she was encouraged by the Rwanda Tribunal’s cooperation with the Democratic Republic of the Congo in tracking fugitives, but more could be done.  The United States was disturbed about reports that Felicien Kabuga continued to have links with Kenya and urged that country to act on the Tribunal’s recommendations and deny him support.  The United States applauded Serbia for the arrest of Radovan Karadzic and Stojan Zupljanin and called for the arrest of the two remaining fugitives.  Serbia should make efforts in that regard.

In that connection, she said she was concerned that the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia had not received some key documents, and urged Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia and Serbia to work closely with the Tribunal.  The United States also called on national authorities in the region to enhance information sharing, facilitate the transfer of proceedings and continue revising laws to facilitate the Tribunal’s work.  The United States looked forward to working towards the establishment of a residual mechanism so that no war criminal would enjoy impunity.

ATTIA OMAR MUBARAK ( Libya) said there had been great progress in the implementation of the Tribunals’ completion strategy with due attention to the rights of the accused.  The failure to arrest some accused and the impunity of those who had committed genocide were cause for legitimate international concern.  That regrettable reality, however, should not prevent implementation of the completion strategy within the set time frame.  The issue called for international cooperation and the provision of material and human resources to enable the Tribunals to complete their work.

He called for more efforts to enhance the capacity of national jurisdictions to continue the work of the two Tribunals.  Such enhancement was in line with efforts to refer as many as possible of the remaining cases to national jurisdictions.  The circumstances had changed since the establishment of the Tribunals.  There was now a great deal of evidence that would enable national jurisdiction to tackle the remaining cases with the assistance of the international community.

GIULIO TERZI DI SANT’AGATA ( Italy) welcomed the progress achieved in implementation of the Tribunals’ completion strategies, but voiced concern that they would be delayed.  Of course, that was due largely to objective factors, but rather than discussing the past, the time had come to look at the future and ensure the smooth completion of the mandates.  At the same time, cooperation was essential for a truly successful completion.  Cooperation had improved recently, but it was a source of concern that after so many years, difficulties remained.  Cooperation must become a firm practice.

It was important to ensure that the Appeals Chambers had the necessary staff and resources, he said, stressing also that it was essential to strengthen capacity in the countries most concerned.  The Tribunals’ legacy must remain under the Council’s consideration.  The obligation to try fugitives should remain the responsibility of the international community.  Important decisions should be adopted regarding residual matters in order to bring to justice those responsible for most heinous crimes.

ALFREDO SUESCUM ( Panama) said the Tribunals must both conclude all their first-instance trials by 2008 and all their work by 2010.  One had to recognize, however, that the work pending might have an impact on the preset deadlines.  As for the Rwanda Tribunal, Panama was concerned about a number of obstacles hampering the referral of cases to national judiciaries, including the protection of witnesses and guarantees of a fair trial.  Panama, while concerned that 13 fugitives remained at large, recognized Serbia’s work in handing over Mr. Karadzic.

He said the Working Group had established the parameters of the residual mechanism.  In dealing with residual issues, the Council must ensure adequate protection for witnesses and victims.  The success of the Tribunals would be measured by their legacy.  Public access to the archives must be achieved.  It was also important to pay attention to concerns expressed by the Tribunals regarding the retention of experienced staff.  Panama called for the necessary measures to enable the Tribunals to conclude their work efficiently.

PAUL ROBERT TIENDREBEOGO ( Burkina Faso) said that, to enable the Rwanda Tribunal to continue with its current level of activity, its President’s request for a greater number of ad litem judges should be accepted, and for the relevant Statute to be changed in order to allow Trial Chambers to be composed exclusively of ad litem judges.  Retiring judges should be allowed to finalize judgements from their countries of origin.

He said the time frame for completion was closely linked to progress made in trials under way and the volume of work in the future.  The Council should be realistic and flexible because it was impossible to abide by the time set in the relevant draft resolution.  As for fugitives, Burkina Faso commended those States that provided assistance to the Tribunals.  It also welcomed agreements by the Tribunals with certain States in respect of sentences and protection of witnesses.

Encouraging both Tribunals to continue with their completion strategies, bearing in mind the time factor, he said that, at this point, consideration should be given to referring cases to national jurisdictions and seeking fugitives.  The international community must continue supporting the Tribunals so they could complete their work.  Justice and the search for international peace and security were a shared responsibility, and Burkina Faso reaffirmed its commitment to combating impunity.

HOANG CHI TRUNG ( Viet Nam) said that, although the Tribunals had made efforts to speed up trials, it seemed that neither of them would be able to meet the timelines set by the Council for the completion of their work.  Besides trying to improve the expeditiousness of the Tribunals’ proceedings, further efforts should be made to refer cases to national jurisdictions.  Viet Nam would continue to join other Council members in their efforts to render the necessary support to the Tribunals for the achievement of their completion strategies.

The determination on the residual mechanism and its functions would help ensure the success of the Tribunals’ completion strategies, he said.  It should be in place and ready to operate when the Tribunals closed their doors, so that impunity was not allowed and the legacy of the Tribunals was protected.  Therefore, Viet Nam appreciated the work done in 2008 by the Working Group and welcomed the inputs made by the Tribunals.  While it had not been able to finalize its work in terms of a resolution by the Council, that merely showed the complicated nature of the issue.  Viet Nam was firmly committed to working constructively with other Council members to ensure a smooth and effective completion of the Tribunals’ work.

MARTY NATALEGAWA ( Indonesia) reiterated his continuing support for the Tribunals and underscored the importance of the completion strategy for their performance during their final phase.  Their efforts to ensure their legacy after completing their mandates were welcome, as were their continued efforts to improve efficiency by exploring ways to expedite proceedings, while respecting the rights of the accused.

He said the Council should set up an international mechanism to address all residual functions, particularly those relating to fugitives at large, the transfer of cases to national jurisdiction, witness protection, sentence supervision and archives.  The trial capacity of such a mechanism was important since it would have the power to prosecute those who had neither been arrested, transferred nor surrendered to the Tribunals, and whose cases had not been referred to a national jurisdiction.  The Informal Working Group had reached agreement on identifying residual functions and their possible solution, while making significant progress in drafting a Council resolution.  Indonesia hoped that would give the Council adequate common ground to expedite that adoption of the text.

ILYA I. ROGACHEV ( Russian Federation) said the completion of first-instance trials before 2009 would not happen, noting that timetables were constantly shifting.  The Rwanda Tribunal reports explained why, but not those of its counterpart for the former Yugoslavia.  One key element of the completion strategy was the transfer of cases to national judicial organs.  The Russian Federation welcomed efforts by the Rwanda Tribunal in that regard, although the Trial Chambers had decided not to do so in some cases.  The Tribunal could cooperate with Rwanda in adjusting its justice system or consider referral to third countries.

The Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia had suspended the transfer of accused persons to national jurisdictions, he said, noting that one important element of that decision was the cooperation with States of the former Yugoslavia.  As Serbia had been cooperating, the relevant section of the Tribunal’s report might have been worded in a more positive tone.  As for the residual mechanism, it was to be hoped that the Council would soon reach agreement on the parameters for such a mechanism, which should be small, financially efficient and temporary.  The Council should be more actively involved in the completion strategy and shoulder the full responsibility it had assumed in establishing the Tribunals.

KAREN PIERCE ( United Kingdom) encouraged the Rwanda Tribunal to work closely with the Governments concerned to facilitate the transfer of lower-level cases.  However, that was absolutely not suitable for the highest-level fugitives, including Ratko Mladic.  While the apprehension of Karadzic and Zupljanin were indeed a milestone, their capture had been the result of coordinated efforts with key authorities in Serbia.  It was regrettable that, while Croatia had recently provided materials required for trial, key documents remained unaccounted for.  Cooperation with the Tribunal was a key condition for the successful integration of all Eastern Balkan countries into the European Union.

Regarding the Rwanda Tribunal, she expressed concern that so many fugitives remained at large, particularly Felicien Kabuga, and urged the relevant countries to cooperate in the arrest and surrender of all inducted persons, who should all be brought to trial.  On the Tribunals’ legacy, the work of the Tribunals and the international community to strengthen the capacity of national institutions was commendable.  Priority should be given to the establishment of the residual mechanism, which should address the issues of the remaining indictees, witness protection, the enforcement of sentences and the management of archives.

SABELO SIVUYILE MAQUNGO (South Africa), noting that several permanent judges of the Rwanda Tribunal were being recalled by their national judicial systems, stressed the importance of ensuring that current cases were not interrupted.  South Africa, therefore, supported the proposal to continue to engage departing judges remotely for the writing of judgements.  It also supported proposals to make maximum use of ad litem judges.  Because the completion strategy was time-bound, it was imperative that imaginative steps be taken to meet the deadline.  The Tribunals were encouraged to continue identifying further reforms so as to complete its work as efficiently and promptly as possible.

He said that, although he was disappointed by the decision of the Appeal Chambers to deny the request by the Prosecutor of the Rwanda Tribunal for referral of some cases to Rwanda, he was encouraged by the cooperation between Rwanda and the Prosecutor’s Office and hoped that all the concerns expressed by the Appeal Chamber would be resolved so that referrals could occur sooner rather than later.

Some of the high-level accused were still at large and, ideally, should be tried by an international court, he said.  It was important that such fugitives be arrested and brought to justice.  South Africa, therefore, called for the cooperation of the States concerned to arrest those fugitives and surrender them to the Tribunals.  As they completed their work, it was important that the Tribunals leave a legacy that affirmed the national justice systems of the territories of Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia.

SAUL WEISLEDER ( Costa Rica), noting the possibility that trial activities would not conclude at the time set and that some might continue through 2011 or 2012, said it was important for both Tribunals to redouble their efforts so that the time extension was as brief as possible.  Obviously, that must not be done to the detriment of the right of the accused to a fair trial.  Since initial reports on the completion strategy, members of the Council had appealed to the international community to continue cooperating with the Tribunals.  In that regard, Costa Rica recognized the efforts of those who had made it possible for two fugitives, including Radovan Karadzic, to be apprehended and handed over to the Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia.

Urging the international community to provide any available information that would help locate fugitives from both Tribunals and bring them to international justice as soon as possible, he said it was also important to bolster the capacity of national justice systems, which would lead to an increase in the number of transfers to national jurisdictions.  The purpose was to ensure justice, as well as the most efficient trials possible in national courts.

In connection with the legacy of the Tribunals and possible residual functions, he said any mechanism to deal with them must be considerably less burdensome.  It was particularly important that high-level individuals, many still at large, be judged by international tribunals.  As for the archives, they were a very important element of the future residual mechanisms.  However, the Council must hear opinions from regional countries before taking a decision on the location of the archives.  The ultimate solution must reconcile the interests of all parties in the region and the international community, in general.

LIU ZHENMIN ( China) noted that the work of the Tribunals had continued to progress during the past year, and that, since the start of the completion strategy, they had improved their working methods.  Now that the first deadline was approaching, however, neither Tribunal had been able to complete its first-instance trials as scheduled.  While the pressures that the Tribunals faced could be understood, it was to be hoped that they would motivate the Tribunals to be more effective.  They should explore the feasibility of enhancing their efficiency by continuing to refer cases to national jurisdictions.

Legacy issues were already on the Council’s agenda and its Working Group had been considering them for a year, he said.  The Tribunals had commented on those issues and had invited the Working Group for visits.  While China viewed those active contributions positively, the issue of residual tasks should be approached in a pragmatic matter.  Difficulties should neither be dismissed nor exaggerated.  Solutions should be sought judiciously.  China expected that the Tribunals would continue on the road of the completion strategy set by the Council.  However, any reasonable proposal for the speedy realization of the completion strategy could be considered.

Council President NEVEN JURICA ( Croatia), speaking in his national capacity, said the failure to locate and arrest remaining fugitives was a major obstacle to the Tribunals’ efforts to fulfil their mandates without compromising their standards or the integrity of the judicial process.  The arrest this year of the fugitives Radovan Karadzic and Stojan Zupljanina, while long overdue, marked an important benchmark in completing the mandate of the former Yugoslavia Tribunal.  Hopefully, their trials would begin early.  Croatia applauded the Tribunal’s having made a priority of the arrest and trial of Ratko Mladic and Goran Hadzic, who had been indicted for some of the most atrocious crimes committed in post-Second World War Europe, namely, the massacres committed in Srebrenica and Vukovar.

It was important to remember that the Tribunals continued to operate in societies still struggling to overcome the past and to heal, he said.  For example, another mass grave had been unearthed last week near Srebrenica in Bosnia and Herzegovina, where almost 1,000 victims had been killed under Mr. Mladic’s command 13 years ago.  Croatia had been an early advocate of the ad hoc tribunals, and the judicial process was important for individualizing criminal responsibility for the crimes committed in the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda.  The remaining fugitives must face justice.  Their impunity must not outlive the Tribunals’ existence.  But the Tribunals would be powerless without unreserved support from the international community.

Croatia was committed to full and unequivocal cooperation with the Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, he said.  Over the years, the Croatian Government had demonstrated the seriousness of its commitment by developing a close working relationship and extending its assistance to the Tribunal on different issues, including by granting access to a staggering number of sensitive documents from the highest military and police authorities.  The Government had taken several operational measures -- including administrative, investigative and judicial steps -– against certain individuals.

As the Tribunals entered their last phase, Croatia was pleased to take part in the ongoing discussions and to share its insights and experience on the residual functions that would have to continue after the trials ended, he said.  Croatia had developed a close working relationship with the Tribunal and was determined to continue its domestic efforts to prosecute war crimes committed in its territory since 1991.  The country had a special interest in finding a sustainable, just and practical solution for discharging the Tribunals’ residual functions, notably those related to the future of their archives and the enforcement of sentences.

THARCISSE KARUGARAMA, Attorney-General and Minister for Justice of Rwanda, said that the inadequacies of his country’s legal and judicial system, as pointed out by the Rwanda Tribunal in its acknowledgement that the system had attained a sufficient level of competence, were common to all systems and were not insurmountable.  There were remedial measures inherent within Rwanda’s judicial system that sought to address the concerns raised by the Tribunal’s judges in their decisions, for example, over witness protection and equality of arms.  Rwanda urged the Tribunal’s judges to re-examine their decisions on the transfer of cases to the national jurisdiction, and reiterated that those decisions had the effect of undermining the trust and confidence that the country had built so painstakingly -- the same trust and confidence that had led certain Governments to apprehend some of the most wanted fugitives found in their respective territories.

He said he was particularly concerned that, on the basis of the Tribunal’s decisions, the German judicial authorities had released two notorious genocide suspects -- Callixte Mbarushimana and Rwabukombe Onesphore -- and only a few days ago a French appellate court had released another genocide suspect, Isaac Kamali.  The Tribunal’s rejection of referrals to Rwanda amounted to an invitation to States not to cooperate with Rwanda, which called on the Security Council to consider that matter as a cause for a serious judicial impasse and take corrective measures accordingly.  Rwanda also re-emphasized that the fugitives remaining at large were not limited to the 13 appearing on the Tribunal’s list.  It was important that the Council ensure that the conclusion of the Tribunal’s mandate did not become an amnesty to those not included on that condensed list.

PAVLE JEVREMOVIC ( Serbia) said he appreciated that the thrust of the “comprehensive” reports by Tribunal President Robinson and Prosecutor Brammertz agreed with Serbia’s assessment of the level of cooperation achieved thus far.  Indeed, Serbia’s efforts to comply with its legal and moral obligations, as well as the difficulties it had encountered in the cooperation -– notably vis-à-vis witness protection -- had been recognized, which illustrated the growing belief in the country’s political will to cooperate fully with the Tribunal, and its resolve to apprehend the two remaining fugitives, Ratko Mladic and Goran Hadzic.  Over the last two weeks, Serbia had provided information to the Prosecutor’s Office relating to the case of Momcilo Perisic and redoubled its efforts to improve its overall cooperation with the Tribunal.

Proceeding from the completion strategy, which Serbia fully supported, he noted that the Tribunal had identified 12 “most important” functions for the residual mechanism to be set up on completion of the Tribunal’s activities.  Serbia was interested in the ongoing dialogue about those functions, particularly those relating to the Tribunal’s archives.  On 23 October, Serbia had advised the Tribunal and the United Nations that wished to ensure that greater possibilities for consultations were presented to interested States with a view to helping them make constructive contributions to the process of creating a residual mechanism.  Serbia reiterated its commitment to full cooperation with the Tribunal and would invest every effort to ensure its lasting legacy.

MIRSADA COLAKOVIC ( Bosnia and Herzegovina) said the Tribunal’s work remained crucial in advancing the cause of justice in her own country, as well as others in the region.  It was important that the Tribunal leave a legacy for the future of international criminal justice, reaffirming the very idea that there could be no reconciliation without justice, no justice without law, and no meaningful law without a court to decide what was just and lawful.  Continuous positive assessments in the reports about the cooperation of Bosnia and Herzegovina with the Tribunal proved its strong determination to serve justice.  The War Crimes Chamber of the State Court was fully operational, demonstrating the country’s willingness and capability to conduct trials.

Reiterating her country’s readiness to continue cooperating fully in securing justice for victims and their families, she welcomed the arrest of two of the four most wanted fugitives, Radovan Karadzic and Stojan Zupljanin.  Their capture represented a major breakthrough, but much remained to be done towards apprehending the remaining two fugitives and bringing them to the Tribunal.  Bosnia and Herzegovina called for their immediate arrest, and fully supported the continuation of the Tribunal’s work until justice was brought to the families of their victims.  “Only then can we say that the mandate of the Tribunal is completed.”

The implementation of the Tribunal’s completion strategy remained a matter of great concern, she said.  The delegation of Bosnia and Herzegovina was aware that residual mechanisms were very complex and required further consultations within the relevant bodies of the United Nations.  Those mechanisms should be carefully designed to address the prosecution of those subject to outstanding arrest warrants and to ensure that impunity was not an option.  Bosnia and Herzegovina appreciated the support of the United Nations and Member States for the Tribunal’s work, and looked forward to its continuation until all conditions for the end of its mandate were met.

ZACHARY D. MUBURI-MUITA ( Kenya) said his country strongly supported the international criminal justice system and took seriously its obligation to cooperate fully.  Regarding allegations by the Prosecutor of the Rwanda Tribunal that Felicien Kabuga resided in Kenya, they were “not only untrue, but also of grave concern to my country”.  The Government of Kenya had cooperated fully with Tribunal officials in the Kabuga case, and, for the past three years, it had been engaged with the Prosecutor’s Office through the Joint Kenya-ICTR Task Force.

He recalled that the Government had obtained an order from the High Court of Kenya in May, freezing property belonging to the estate of Mr. Kabuga.  In the past, Kenya had arrested fugitives found within its territory and surrendered them to the Tribunal.  Should Mr. Kabuga ever be found on Kenyan soil, he would likewise be apprehended and surrendered to the Tribunal.  The nature of fugitives was that they hid and at times sent those pursuing them in the wrong direction.  The search for Mr. Kabuga should, therefore, be widened to other areas.  One might be over-concentrating on Kenya while the fugitive could be living comfortably elsewhere.

Concluding Remarks

Mr. BYRON, Judge and President of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, said in his concluding remarks that the approval of delegations that had voiced support for the Tribunal would help it attain the objectives of its completion strategy.  The Tribunal joined Member States in congratulating Belgium on its chairmanship of the Working Group.  It had benefited from the exchange of views with the Working Group on the residual mechanism, and from the Working Group’s visit, which had had a positive impact on staff morale.

Taking note of the remarks concerning referrals to national jurisdictions, he assured the Council that the Tribunal was continuing its capacity-building relationship with Rwanda to the extent that its trust fund allowed.  Member States were invited to provide additional support by contributing to the trust fund supporting those efforts.  The decisions already taken on referrals did not undermine the fact that they continued to be part of the completion strategy.  The Prosecutor remained engaged in discussions, and when he considered that changes had been made justifying new applications for referral, he would renew the applications before the court.

Mr. JALLOW, Prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, responded to remarks made by Rwanda’s Attorney-General and Minister for Justice by pointing out that there were two systems of transfer:  prosecutorial transfer and transfer of indictees.  Under prosecutorial transfer, the Prosecutor’s Office had handed over 35 people, while the transfer of indictees was covered by the Tribunal’s rules of procedure.  While recognizing the progress that the country had achieved, the best way to break the current impasse was further improvements on Rwanda’s part.

Addressing comments made by the representative of Kenya about Mr. Kabuga, he reiterated that the information presented to the Council was not based on investigations by the Prosecutor’s Office, but on a report of the Joint Task Force in which Tribunal investigators and Kenyan police authorities had participated.  That Task Force had documented the fugitive’s entry into the country Kenya, the approval of residence, his opening of bank accounts and his business activities.  It was, therefore, surprising that Kenya denied Mr. Kabuga’s presence in the country.  The Government had taken no action regarding the bank accounts and businesses managed by Mr. Kabuga’s colleagues.  It was that Government’s responsibility to move forward on recommendations put forward by the Joint Task Force, and the Prosecutor’s Office urged it to do so.

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