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ICTY Weekly Press Briefing - 21st Nov 2001

ICTY Press Briefing - 21 November 2001

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

Weekly Press Briefing

Date: 21 November 2001

Time: 11:00 a.m.


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

I would like to announce that the President of the Tribunal, will be addressing
the General Assembly in New York on 26 November and then the Security Council
the following day. We will endeavour to provide you with the texts of those
addresses once they have been delivered in New York.

a reminder that tomorrow, Thursday 22 November 2001, the six new permanent Judges
of the Tribunal will make their solemn declarations at 5.30 p.m. in Courtroom
I. The new Judges, elected by the General Assembly on 14 March 2001, are:

Theodor Meron from the United States of America

Mr. Mohamed Amin El Abbassi Elmahdi from Egypt

Mr. Carmel A. Agius from Malta

Mr. Alphonsus Martinus Maria Orie from the Netherlands

Mr. Wolfgang Schomburg from Germany, and

Mr. O-gon Kwon from the Republic of Korea

the same day, the Tribunal will host a Diplomatic Information Briefing, at which
representatives from The Hague’s diplomatic community will be given an overview
of the work of the Tribunal and the challenges that lie ahead. They will be
addressed by the President of the Tribunal, Judge Claude Jorda, the Prosecutor,
Carla Del Ponte, and the Registrar, Mr. Hans Holthuis.

following day, Friday 23 November 2001, during an extraordinary plenary session,
the permanent Judges will elect the President and Vice President of the Tribunal
and the new President will announce the composition of the Chambers.

have received copies of the Defence brief in the Talic case in French. Copies
are available for you after this.

I want to announce the publication by the Outreach Programme of the latest volume
of all the public indictments in BCS; a collection of all of the current case
information sheets in BCS; and the Judges report of 13 September 2000 on compensation
for victims.


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

The Prosecutor
was in Skopje yesterday. In the statement she made there she announced that
two investigations had been opened by the OTP on crimes committed in Macedonia
during the armed conflict. The first investigation was related to crimes allegedly
committed by Macedonian forces against protected persons, meaning civilians.
The other investigation involved a number of crimes allegedly committed by the
NLA. During yesterday’s meetings with officials in Skopje, the OTP received
clear commitment that the Macedonian authorities would cooperate fully on these
two investigations and on all requests made by the OTP regarding information
about crimes committed in Macedonia.



whether Pasko Ljubicic had arrived in The Hague, Landale replied that he had
not yet arrived at the Detention Unit. He added that he would inform the media
as soon as he had arrived there.

for a comment on a statement allegedly made by Mr. Milosevic’s lawyer in Belgrade
that Milosevic had not asked for the two lawyers to be assigned to him as
legal advisors, Landale replied that these two lawyers had been appointed
to aid in Mr. Milosevic’s defence, if he wanted legal advice, just like any
other accused. Milosevic would be entitled to meet them, as the order stipulated,
in a privileged setting. Mr. Milosevic did in fact request to see them on
26 October 2001, he concluded.

Asked why
these two specific lawyers had been assigned, Landale replied that in discussions
between Mr. Milosevic, the Registry and the Trial Chamber it had been decided
that those two lawyers would be chosen. He added that he could not comment
on what Mr. Tomanovic had said in Belgrade concerning any possible change
of heart. The Tribunal had not heard about this officially.

what ‘in discussion with the Registry’ meant, Landale replied that he did
not know the details of the discussion. The idea was put to Mr. Milosevic
that this was what would be happening and he was asked whether he had any
ideas who would be suitable. The end result was that these two lawyers were

whether Mr. Milosevic objected to these two names, Landale replied that he
had not objected to these two names at the time.

when this discussion between Registry and Mr. Milosevic happened, Landale
replied that he did not know a precise date and whether it was a single discussion
at a precise time. It might have been a correspondence that had taken place
over a number of days.

to confirm that it was 26 October that Mr. Milosevic had asked to see them,
Landale confirmed that it was. He added that this was all indicated in the

whether Mr. Milosevic had informed the Registrar that he rejected this idea,
Landale replied that he had not as far as he knew. He added that he would
check again but that he could not comment specifically on comments coming
out of Belgrade. He reiterated that the Registry had not heard any specific
objection at this time.

Asked whether
Milosevic had asked to see them in the role of legal advisors, members of
the International Committee for the Defence of Slobodan Milosevic, or as friends,
Landale replied that he did not know what category he had placed them in,
in terms of visits, whether as friends, supporters or legal advisors. All
he knew was that Mr. Milosevic has requested a visit from them.

whether Milosevic had requested a privileged visit on that occasion, Landale
replied that Mr. Milosevic had always maintained that he preferred that kind
of visit but he did not know whether that had been specified for these two
individuals or not. Milosevic had always requested visits in a privileged
setting, he concluded.

if Milosevic refused to have them whether the order would be revoked, Landale
replied that it would not be. He added that this was not being imposed upon
him. It was giving him an option of legal advice in a legal setting from legal
experts which was what every other accused could expect as well. The Tribunal
would not force him to meet with them but he had the option to do so.

if he could request someone else, Landale replied that he could not. He added
that the Judges had settled on these two and these were the two he had the
option of seeing. He went on to clarify that this order only concerned defence
and this case at this Tribunal. Milosevic would be able, if he wanted, to
see other lawyers who were working on cases that fell outside of this Tribunal
or other legal matters that did not relate to indictments he faced at this
Tribunal. That was not going to be prevented but these two were to help his
defence at this Tribunal.

Asked whether
there were any changes in Milosevic’s conditions of detention, Landale replied
that he would check.

whether the President would discuss issues relating to the Vukovar case before
the General Assembly, given that it was the tenth anniversary of the fall
of Vukovar, the sixth anniversary of the Vukovar indictment being filed, the
fifth anniversary of the filing of the arrest warrants against the accused
in the case, and given the fact that the President had already on at least
two occasions reported the FRY to the Security Council concerning the case,
Landale replied that he would not discuss what was included in the President’s
speech at this time. Once the President had made his speech copies would be
given to the media. The Tribunal’s position on this was very clear. It was
outrageous and totally unacceptable that these three individuals were still
at large. The Tribunal had always maintained this position, he added.

whether the Prosecutor would discuss the fact that General Gotovina was no
longer in Croatia with the Security Council, Hartmann replied that she would
not disclose the contents of the address before Monday. On the issue of Gotovina,
the obligation of the Tribunal, with the assistance and cooperation of member
states, was to locate fugitives and to bring them to The Hague. If Gotovina
had left Croatia, the OTP would seek the support of Croatia and other member
states to find out where he was, she concluded.