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Croatian international relations students learn about the ICTY

Zagreb, 23 April 2013 

Alexandros Zervos, deputy chef de cabinet of the ICTY president, today met with around 40 students and professors from the Dag Hammarskjöld School of International Relations and Diplomacy in Zagreb. Alexandros introduced the students to the importance of international criminal justice in the wider context of international relations and highlighted the groundbreaking role the ICTY has played in the development of international criminal law and the struggle against impunity. He spoke about the milestone achievements in procedural practice at the ICTY, but also addressed criticisms sometimes leveled at the ICTY.

Following the presentation, the students had numerous questions. One asked about the total budget of ICTY so far. Alexandros explained that that the greater cost of the Tribunal relative to national courts is related to many factors, including the complexity and length of the proceedings, the fact that the cases before the Tribunal deal with crimes committed on a large territory over several years and encompass huge numbers of victims, the fact that all court proceedings are held in at least three, and sometimes four, languages, and the fact that the vast majority of its written documents are translated into at least two languages.

The students’ professor, Budimir Lončar, former Yugoslav and UN diplomat, and current foreign affairs advisor to Croatia’s president, praised the presentation and said how much he welcomed the opportunity for his students to learn about such issues directly from ICTY representatives.