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ICTY Weekly Press Briefing -14 November 2012

Date:  7.14.2012
Time: 12:00

Registry and Chambers:

Magdalena Spalinska, Spokesperson for Registry and Chambers, made the following statement:

Good afternoon,

The Appeals Judgment in the case of Ante Gotovina and Mladen Markač will be rendered this Friday at 9:00. On 15 April 2011, the two Croatian Generals were found guilty of crimes against humanity and violations of the laws and customs of war committed by Croatian forces during the 1995 ‘Operation Storm’ military offensive in Croatia. They were sentenced to 24 and 18 years’ imprisonment respectively. The accreditation procedure for media and members of the public wishing to attend the judgement will close this afternoon at 17:00. Journalists are advised to arrive from 07:30 onwards on Friday morning to pick up their accreditation tickets from the main entrance.

A further two Judgments have been scheduled:

The Judgement in the retrial of Ramush Haradinaj, Idriz Balaj and Lahi Brahimaj, three former commanders of the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA), will be pronounced on Thursday, 29 November 2012 at 9:00 in Courtroom I. All three accused are charged with crimes committed in 1998 in Western Kosovo. On 21 July 2010, the Appeals Chamber partially quashed the acquittals of Haradinaj and Balaj and ordered that the case be re-tried on six counts of the indictment relating to the crimes committed in the KLA-run camp in Jablanica/Jabllanicë. The Appeals Chamber found that the Trial Chamber had failed to take sufficient steps to counter the witness intimidation that permeated the trial, in particular, to secure the testimony of two witnesses. According to the Appeals Chamber, the Trial Chamber’s error undermined the fairness of the proceedings and resulted in a miscarriage of justice.

The Appeals Judgement in the case of Milan Lukić and Sredoje Lukić, two Bosnian Serbs accused of crimes committed in the Eastern Bosnian town of Višegrad from 1992 to 1994, has been scheduled to be rendered on Tuesday, 4 December 2012 at 15:00 in Courtroom I. On 20 July 2009, the Trial Chamber sentenced Milan Lukić and Sredoje Lukić to life imprisonment and 30 year’s imprisonment respectively.

Before turning to the courtrooms, I would like to flag up a decision rendered last Thursday by the President, Judge Theodor Meron, in the case of Momčilo Krajišnik. The President denied Krajišnik’s third request for early release due to the gravity of the crimes he was convicted of and the fact that he has yet to serve two-thirds of his sentence. Krajišnik, one of the highest ranking war-time members of the Bosnian Serb leadership, was sentenced on 17 March 2009 to 20 years’ imprisonment. He was transferred to the United Kingdom on 7 September 2009 and has since been serving his sentence there.

Turning to the courtrooms, proceedings in the trials of Radovan Karadžić, Ratko Mladić and Goran Hadžić, continue this week and next as scheduled:

In the trial of Radovan Karadžić this afternoon, the Defence is expected to call its next witness, Dušan Zurovac, former officer in the Sarajevo-Romanija Corps of the Republika Srpska Army.

In the trial of Ratko Mladić, witness RM-511 is testifying in closed session.

In the case of Goran Hadžić, the Trial Chamber will continue to hear the testimony of protected witness GH – 015 tomorrow morning.

Finally, I would like to inform you of the two following events taking place today:

The Tribunal, together with the International Committee of the Red Cross, launched a three-day roundtable discussion in The Hague on the enforcement of sentences handed down by the ICTY. The purpose of the meeting is to consolidate the relationship between the ICTY and Enforcement States ahead of the completion of the Tribunal’s mandate and to ensure a smooth transition from the ICTY to the Mechanism for International Criminal Tribunals.

The Tribunal’s Outreach Programme will be taking part today in an annual teacher training on world citizenship on the theme ‘Peace and Law’, organised by a Dutch NGO Edukans in The Hague. Edukans supports teaching methodology in the Netherlands which is aimed at building relationships of solidarity between Dutch students and their peers in other, especially less developed, countries. The Outreach Programme will take this opportunity to provide Dutch teachers with information and tools to help them make the ICTY’s work and achievements known and meaningful to students. This initiative forms part of Outreach’s wider efforts to work with high school students and inform them of the Tribunal’s achievements.

Office of the Prosecutor:

Aleksandar Kontić, member of the Prosecutor's Immediate Office, made no statement:


Asked whether Mladen Tuta Naletilić, now detained in Italy, will be granted early release, Magdalena Spalinska said that she had no information.

Asked how many journalists are accredited to attend the Appeals Judgement in the Gotovina and Markač case on Friday, Spalinska replied that there are around 50 accredited journalists so far. A majority of them are from Croatia and there is also a fair representation from international media outlets such as Reuters and AFP as well as from France and other countries.


International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia

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