Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

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1 Thursday, 4 May 2006

2 [Status Conference]

3 [Open session]

4 [The Respondents Limaj and Musliu not present in

5 court]

6 [The appellant entered court]

7 --- Upon commencing at 4.45 p.m.

8 JUDGE MERON: Please be seated. Registrar, would you please call

9 the case.

10 THE REGISTRAR: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour. This is

11 case number IT-03-66-A, the Prosecutor versus Fatmir Limaj, Haradin Bala,

12 and Isak Musliu.

13 JUDGE MERON: Thank you. Could I now please have the appearances

14 for the parties. First for the Prosecution.

15 MS. McCALL: Your Honour, I'm Shelagh McCall. With me is Helen

16 Brady and our case manager Kim Fischer.

17 JUDGE MERON: Thank you, Ms. McCall.

18 Next, counsel for Mr. Limaj. I understand that he's appearing by

19 telephone hookup.

20 MR. KHAN: I am, Your Honour. Karim Khan, co-counsel for Fatmir

21 Limaj.

22 JUDGE MERON: Thank you. Thank you, Mr. Khan.

23 MR. KHAN: Thank you.

24 JUDGE MERON: Counsel for Mr. Bala.

25 MR. GUY-SMITH: Thank you, Your Honour. Gregor Guy-Smith

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1 appearing on behalf of Mr. Bala with my legal assistant Nathalie van den

2 Berge.

3 JUDGE MERON: Thank you. Counsel for Mr. Musliu.

4 MR. POWLES: Good afternoon, Your Honour. Steven Powles appearing

5 on behalf of respondent Isak Musliu.

6 JUDGE MERON: Thank you, Mr. Powles. I understand that Mr. Limaj

7 and Mr. Musliu, who are not currently incarcerated, are not attending the

8 Status Conference. Would their counsel kindly confirm this for the

9 record. Mr. Khan?

10 MR. KHAN: Yes, Mr. Limaj has been spoken to pursuant to Rule 65

11 bis, and he is content for the proceeding to take place in his absence and

12 with counsel representing him via telephone.

13 JUDGE MERON: Thank you, Mr. Khan.

14 Mr. Powles.

15 MR. POWLES: Your Honour, yes. Mr. Musliu has similarly

16 consented.

17 JUDGE MERON: However, Mr. Bala is present today, and I would like

18 to make sure that you, Mr. Bala, can follow the proceedings. Can you hear

19 the proceedings in a language that you understand, Mr. Bala?

20 THE APPELLANT BALA: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour.

21 JUDGE MERON: Thank you. Thank you, Mr. Bala. You may be seated.

22 This is a Status Conference called in accordance with Rule 65 bis

23 of the Rules of Procedure and Evidence. Rule 65 bis (B) requires a Status

24 Conference to be convened within 120 days of the filing of a notice of

25 appeal. Both Mr. Bala and the Prosecution filed notices of appeal on 30

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1 December, 2005, which was slightly more than 120 days ago. Mr. Limaj,

2 Mr. Bala, and Mr. Musliu, however, have all consented to have this, the

3 first pre-appeal Status Conference, held slightly after the 120 days

4 deadline set out in the Rule 65 bis. I thank their counsel for

5 communicating that consent to court staff by telephone or by e-mail.

6 As Mr. Bala is currently detained at the UN Detention Unit, I

7 would want to start by asking him whether there are any issues that he

8 would like to raise at this time.

9 Mr. Bala, do you have any issues you would like to raise now? Do

10 you have any concerns regarding your mental or physical well-being?

11 Mr. Bala.

12 THE APPELLANT BALA: [Interpretation] No, Your Honour. Everything

13 is fine as far as my health state is concerned.

14 JUDGE MERON: Thank you, Mr. Bala. You may be seated.

15 Now I would like to ask the counsel for Mr. Limaj and then of

16 Mr. Musliu whether there are any issues that they would like to raise

17 through counsel.

18 First the counsel for Mr. Limaj, Mr. Khan.

19 MR. KHAN: Your Honour, I'm obliged. On behalf of Mr. Limaj,

20 there are no matters that need occupy the Appeals Chamber at the moment.

21 We are grateful.

22 JUDGE MERON: Thank you, Mr. Khan.

23 Mr. Musliu -- sorry, the counsel for Mr. Musliu, Mr. Powles.

24 MR. POWLES: Yes, Your Honour. I similarly confirm on behalf of

25 Mr. Musliu there is no matter that we would wish to raise with the Appeals

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1 Chamber at this stage.

2 JUDGE MERON: Thank you very much.

3 The briefing in this case is moving along nicely. The Prosecution

4 has filed its appellant's brief, and Mr. Limaj and Mr. Musliu have filed

5 their respondent briefs. Mr. Bala's respondent's brief is due in the next

6 few days. After the Prosecution files its reply, the briefing of the

7 Prosecution's appeal will be complete.

8 Mr. Bala's appellant's brief will also be due in the next few

9 days. After the Prosecution response and Mr. Bala replies, the briefing

10 of that appeal will be complete.

11 The Appeals Chamber will, of course, try to read through the

12 briefs and schedule oral arguments on the appeals as soon as possible.

13 Before concluding this Status Conference, I would want to ask

14 counsel for the Prosecution and the Defence whether they have any other

15 issues that they would like to raise at this time.

16 The Prosecution?

17 MS. McCALL: There's nothing to be raised Your Honour.

18 JUDGE MERON: Thank you. The Defence? I understand, Mr. Khan,

19 that you have nothing to raise?

20 MR. KHAN: No, Your Honour. I'm grateful once again.

21 JUDGE MERON: Thank you.

22 MR. GUY-SMITH: Yes, on behalf of Mr. Bala, considering the recent

23 past events in his family's life, both I as well as Mr. Bala would like to

24 thank not only the Prosecution but the Appeals Chamber for expeditedly and

25 compassionately taking care of that matter.

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1 JUDGE MERON: Thank you. Thank you. I appreciate your comment.

2 Mr. Powles, do you have anything?

3 MR. POWLES: No, Your Honour, nothing to raise at this stage. I'm

4 grateful.

5 JUDGE MERON: Before we adjourn, there is one last piece of

6 business that I would like to take care of. We seem to have had a bit of

7 difficulty scheduling this Status Conference, and I want to avoid similar

8 scheduling problems in the future. In accordance with Rule 65 bis, we

9 will need to have another Status Conference on or before September 1. I

10 would like to suggest Tuesday, 29 of August, as a suitable day for our

11 next Status Conference. So I would like everybody to plan on having a

12 Status Conference on that day.

13 Later in the summer, I will hopefully send out an order confirming

14 that the Status Conference will be held on that date. The order will also

15 let everybody know the time of the conference and the courtroom in which

16 it will held.

17 So I thank the parties for their attendance today and call the

18 proceedings to a close. Thank you very much.

19 --- Whereupon the Status Conference adjourned

20 at 4.54 p.m.