Press Release . Communiqué de presse
(Exclusively for the use of the media. Not an official document)
The Hague, 18 November 1997
1. TRIAL CHAMBER DENIES PROSECUTION REQUEST
FOR WITNESS TESTIMONY BY VIDEO-LINK
On 11 November 1997, Trial Chamber II (consisting of Judge Karibi-Whyte, Judge Odio Benito and Judge Jan) issued an Order on the Motion to Allow Certain Witnesses to Give Testimony by Means of Video-Link Conference. The order denied a request by the Office of the Prosecution (OTP) for witness testimony by video link.
The order was issued pursuant to a confidential motion filed by the Office of the Prosecutor on 26 September 1997. During an oral hearing before the Chamber, on 13 October 1997, the OTP had submitted that three persons named in the motion were unwilling to testify in the Hague.
After having considered the reasons given by the OTP, the Trial Chamber deemed that "the reason ... for the hearing of the testimony by video link conference do not satisfy the requirements of sub-Rule 90 (A)". This sub-Rule authorises a Chamber to receive testimony by means of video-link conferencing "... in exceptional circumstances and in the interest of
2. TRIAL CHAMBER PERMITS
DR. JAMES GOW AND PROFESSOR CONSTANTIN ECONOMIDES
TO GIVE EXPERT TESTIMONY
On 11 November 1997, Trial Chamber II (Judge Karibi-Whyte, Judge Odio Benito and Judge Jan) issued an Order on the Prosecution’s Motion for Leave to Call Additional Expert Witnesses in which it granted the Prosecution’s request that Dr. James Gow and Professor Constantin Economides appear before the Chamber as additional expert witnesses.
In requesting leave from the Trial Chamber to call the above experts, on 1 October 1997, in a "Motion to Seek Leave to Call Additional Expert Witnesses", the Prosecution had asserted that new facts had come to its knowledge. Moreover, the OTP stated that the Opinion and Judgement in the Tadi} case had raised new issues on the question of the international character of the
conflict in the former Yugoslavia.
During an oral hearing on the Prosecution motion before the Chamber, on 23 October 1997, the Defence for all four accused had objected to the calling of Professor Economides since it did not consider it to be an appropriate use of an expert witness when the witness is to testify to the Trial Chamber on international law, and in their view, the determination of international
law remains within the exclusive province of the Trial Chamber.
Professor Economides who testified before the Trial Chamber on 30 October 1997, will appear in Court again in the first week of December 1997; Dr. James Gow is also expected to testify in the first week of December 1997.
The full texts of the above documents can be obtained from
the Press and Information Office upon request.