Press Release . Communiqué de presse
(Exclusively for the use of the media. Not an official document)
The Hague, 12 September 2000
JL/ P.I.S./ 527-e
BELGIUM TO PROVIDE EXPERTS TO ASSIST THE INVESTIGATIONS
OF THE OFFICE OF THE PROSECUTOR IN KOSOVO
On Tuesday 12 September 2000, the United Nations and Belgium signed an agreement for the provision of qualified personnel to assist the investigations being currently conducted in Kosovo by the Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY).
The work of the forensic team which Belgium will send to Kosovo will consist of gathering evidence and assisting in the exhumations of mass graves, in order to obtain evidence for the ongoing investigations of the Prosecutor. The team - which will consist of 24 individuals - will be dispatched to the region today, 12 September 2000, and will return to Belgium on 16 October
This agreement was signed by H.E. Mr. Olivier Gillès de Pélichy, Permanent Representative to the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) on behalf of the Belgian Government and by Ms. Dorothee de Sampayo Garrido-Nijgh, Registrar of the International Tribunal, on behalf of the Secretary-General of the United Nations.
Belgium is one of the 14 states that signed similar agreements in 1999. Discussions are ongoing with a number of other states prepared to assist the operations of the Office of the Prosecutor in Kosovo.