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ICTY Weekly Press Briefing - 1st Jan 0001

ICTY Weekly Press Briefing

note that this is not a verbatim transcript of the Press Briefing. It is merely
a summary.

ICTY Weekly
Press Briefing

Date: 05.02.2003

Time: 12:10


James Landale, Spokesman for Registry and Chambers, made the following statement:

Good afternoon,

In terms of court

In the
Prosecutor v. Radovan Stankovic:

- On 4 February, we received the "Prosecution Reply to the Defence
Preliminary Motion on the Form of the Second Amended Indictment

In the
Prosecutor v. Kordic and Cerkez:

- On 3 January we received a Scheduling Order changing the time of the
upcoming status conference to 2.15 p.m. on 7 February. It had been previously
been scheduled for 9.30 a.m.

In the
Prosecutor v. Stanislav Galic:

- On 31 January, we received the "Defence’s Submission Pursuant
to Rule 94bis of Expert Report of Dr. Svetlana Radovanovic
". This is
a lengthy document and so will only be available on request.

- On 3 February, we received the "Decision on the Defence Motion for
Withdrawal of Judge Orie
", denying the Motion.

In the
Prosecutor v. Meakic, Gruban, Knezevic, Fustar and Banovic:

- On 28 January, we received "Dusko Knezevic’s Request for Oral
Hearing on Motion for Provisional Release

In the
Prosecutor v. Slobodan Milosevic:

- On 29 January, we received a Scheduling Order from the President of
the Tribunal for the prosecution to file its Appeals Brief within seven days
of receipt of the Order; for the Defence to file their response within 10 days
after that; and for the Prosecution to reply within four days.

- On 30 January, we received the "Amici Curiae Observations in Response
to the Prosecution Motion for the Admission of Written Statements in Lieu of
Viva Voce Testimony Pursuant to Rule 92bis, Filed 10th January 2003
and Confidential Annex A

- On 31
January, we received the "Decision on Motion By the Defence for Momcilo
Krajisnik For Access to Confidential Material
".Again on 31 January,
we received a "Request for Correction or Clarification" from
the Defence Counsel for Momcilo Krajisnik.

- And yet again on 31 January, we received the "Amici Curiae Observations
on the Prosecution Motion for the Admission of the Transcripts in Lieu of Viva
Voce Testimony Pursuant to Rule 92bis (D), Filed January 2003

- On 4 February, we received an English copy of the expert report compiled by
Renaud de la Brosse, entitled "Political Propoganda and the Plan to
Create a ‘State for all Serbs’ Consequences for Using the Media for Ultra-Nationalist
". We expect to have a BCS translation later on in the week or
next week.

In the
Prosecutor v. Dragan Nikolic:

- On 3 February, we received an Order from the President of the Tribunal
nominating Judges Shahabuddeen (presiding), Guney, Gunarwardana, Pocar and Meron
to sit on a bench of the Appeals Chamber in this case.

- On the same day, we received the "Prosecution Reponse to ‘Appellant’s
Brief on Appeal Against A Decision of the Trial Chamber Dated 9 October 2002’

In the
Prosecutor v. Blagojevic, Obrenovic, Jokic and Nikolic:

- On 31 January, we received the "Prosecution Response to Blagojevic’s
Second Appeal Regarding Provisional Release
". Then, on 3 February,
we received the Accused’s reply to that document.

- Also on 3 February, we received the "Prosecution’s Submission of BCS
Translations of Statements of Expert Witness Rick Butler

- Also, I would like to confirm that the full transcript of the Babic testimony
in the Milosevic trial is now on the ICTY website.

- Finally, as of next week, I will be away on a month’s home leave. The contact
point in my absence will be Christian Chartier.


Florence Hartmann,
Spokeswoman for the Office of the Prosecutor, made the following statement.

On the Bobetko
case, I wish to inform you that the Prosecution has received the expert report
presented by the medical team mandated by the Registrar of the ICTY. The OTP
has taken note that, according to the medical findings, due to the health condition
of the accused, the arrest warrant cannot be executed and the accused is unfit
for transfer or to stand trial. In view of this development, the OTP is not
contemplating to request the withdrawal of the indictment against Janko Bobetko.
The OTP takes the position that the Registrar of the ICTY should continue to
monitor the condition of the accused. A motion will be filed soon regarding
this case. However, it will be for the Duty Judge to decide any further step.

Putting aside
the Bobetko case, Ms Del Ponte wishes to underline that there is growing concern
within the OTP in regard to the level of co-operation provided by Croatia. The
Chief Prosecutor addressed this issue briefly before the UN Security Council
last October. There are two main points to make at this stage:

the failure
to locate and arrest the accused Ante Gotovina, who is freely travelling through
Croatia; it is not a good sign for further indictments we could have in the

the selective,
slow and incomplete compliance with specific requests for documents in regard
to original Croatian archives. On this subject, it is fair to say that co-operation
in some areas is good, while in some specific instances is not sufficient
and causes unacceptable delays for our investigations. Therefore the Prosecutor
demands full cooperation and not partial cooperation.


A correspondent
asked whether the Tribunal was afraid of setting an unwanted precedent, namely
that everybody accused in the future over 50 years old would ask for a detailed
medical examination and would try to get away with it? He continued that it
was not only the outcome of the medical report of Bobetko but that it seemed
to him that there had been two months of negotiations with Croatia as to whether
they would arrest him or would not arrest him, then the accused fell ill….
Was the Tribunal not afraid this would set a precedent for other States in
the region?

Hartmann replied
that there were no negotiations, there was the refusal of Croatia to cooperate
or the postponing of compliance with their obligations.

Landale said
that he did not think that this would set a bad precedent. Where there was
a real question as to the health of the accused that was something the Tribunal
would take very seriously and it would follow the appropriate procedures to
ensure whether or not someone could be transferred. In this particular case,
an expert team of doctors had gone out to examine the accused, a report had
been submitted through the Registrar to the Duty Judge and we would see what
decision would be taken on that basis. He did not think that this would set
a precedent. The health of the accused was something that obviously the Tribunal
was concerned about.

Asked for clarification
as to when the Duty Judge would make the decision based on the expert medical
report, Landale replied that this would be up to the Judge based on any feedback
that that Judge received from the Office of the Prosecutor.

In answer to
a journalist’s question as to how the continued monitoring of Bobetko’s health
would work and who would undertake it, Landale replied that it would be the
responsibility of the Registrar to undertake that task when appropriate. Any
possible future medical examination would most likely be conducted in cooperation
with the authorities in Zagreb, he added.

In reference
to Hartmann’s statement, a journalist asked what evidence the OTP had when
she mentioned that Ante Gotovina was travelling freely through Croatia. Hartmann
replied that as usual it was based on information that the OTP collected on
which of course she could not give details. When the OTP announced that Mladic
was in Serbia, it had information. When the OTP was insisting that some government
had to cooperate in locating or arresting fugitives it was because it had
the information that they were on their territory and therefore that government
should comply.

Asked for comments
about Seselj, both Hartmann and Landale declined.

Asked whether
an accused would need a visa in order to come to The Hague, Hartmann replied
that they did not need a visa.

Asked in the
Bobetko case about the role of the Dutch Government who had blocked the ratification
of the Association Agreement between the Republic of Croatia and the EU in
December, Hartmann replied that she was surprised with this question since
the OTP would never interfere on any bilateral relations. Landale added that
this also applied to the whole Tribunal.