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Successful week of university events in Serbia

Niš, Novi Sad, Belgrade and Novi Pazar, 22 - 25 October 2013

Lada Šoljan, a Legal Adviser in the ICTY’s Immediate Office of the Prosecutor, this week travelled to Serbia to give a series of five presentations on the work of the Tribunal to students at a number of institutions.

At universities in Niš, Novi Sad and Novi Pazar, and at the Belgrade Open School, Lada gave talks largely focusing on the topics of courtroom cross-examination and the protection and support of witnesses.

The students in each location proved to be interested and engaged on the subjects addressed and always had numerous questions for Lada. Some asked about technical aspects of the work of a lawyer at the Tribunal, while others had queries related to specific cases, including those of Serbian Radical Party leader Vojislav Šešelj and the former Croatian generals tried in the Gotovina et al. case. There were a number of questions related to witness protection in the Haradinaj et al. trial of erstwhile Kosovo Liberation Army members.

The witnesses strand of the presentation also provoked a number of inquiries from the students, including on how lawyers and investigators deal with their own emotions while talking to vulnerable victims and witnesses, and how easy it is to tell if a witness is lying or scared.

Another common theme of the questions was what will happen after the ICTY closes its doors, prompting Lada to talk about the successor institution, the Mechanism for International Criminal Tribunals.

The presentations proved popular across the board, with warm applause greeting the end of each one.