Legacy website of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia

Since the ICTY’s closure on 31 December 2017, the Mechanism maintains this website as part of its mission to preserve and promote the legacy of the UN International Criminal Tribunals.

 Visit the Mechanism's website.

ICTY Weekly Press Briefing - 23rd Jun 2004

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: 23.06.2004

Time: 12.00 p.m.

Registry and Chambers:

Christian Chartier, Chief Public Information, made the following

Good afternoon,

As we speak, the President of the Tribunal is completing a
two-day mission to Sarajevo.

Yesterday he held meetings at the Office of the High Representative,
more specifically with Ambassador Fassier and his team; they discussed
progresses made with regard to the establishment of a War Crimes
Chamber within the State Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina. In the
afternoon, President Meron visited the State Court and met with
its President, Judge Raguz.

This morning, President Meron had a meeting with the High Representative,
Lord Ashdown, following which he flew to the Srebrenica Memorial
Cemetery, at Potocari, where he delivered an address. The full text
of the President’s address will be available to you after this briefing.

Starting this afternoon, a visit will be paid to the Tribunal
by the Minister of Justice of Croatia, Ms. Vesna Skare Ozbolt. The
Minister will be accompanied by Vice-Minister Muljacic, State Prosecutor
Bajic, and Ambassador Krnic. The delegation will hold talks focusing
on the on-going cooperation between Croatia and the ICTY, with Prosecutor
Del Ponte and Registrar Hans Holthuis, today, and with President
Meron tomorrow.

In terms of the court schedule:

On my way to this briefing, I was informed that the
Sentencing Judgement of Milan Babic will be delivered next Tuesday,
29 June 2004, at 11 a.m. in courtroom 1.

There will be a status conference in The Prosecutor v. Limaj,
Bala and Musliu
this Friday 25 June 2004 at 3 p.m. in courtroom

Another such status conference will take place on 9 July 2004
in the case The Prosecutor v. Mitar Rasevic.

In the contempt proceedings against Milka Maglov, Trial Chamber
II has ordered that the case resume on Tuesday 20 July 2004. The
Defence will have until 22 July 2004 at the latest to present her
case. And closing arguments will be heard on Thursday 29 July 2004.

With regard to Decisions issued by the Chambers,

In the Milosevic case, you should have received
at the end of last week, a press advisory on the Omnibus Order in
which Trial Chamber III recapped a number of decisions made during
the pre-defence conference. Another Order was issued separately
by the Trial Chamber on 17 June 2004, requesting the Accused to
apply in writing for the safe conducts he asked for with regard
to three of his witnesses

Also, for those who were not at the Tribunal yesterday, copies
were distributed of the Decision whereby Trial Chamber II denied
the Strugar Defence Motion for a Judgement of Acquittal, only admitting
that cruel treatment charges with regard to one victim could not
be sustained as well as charges related to the destruction of some
buildings and structures. The full text of this Decision has meanwhile
been released on our website.

In the Strugar case too, the Trial Chamber on 17 June 2004
denied the Defence request to be granted leave to appeal against
the groundbreaking Decision of 26 May 2004 in which Trial Chamber
found that the Accused was fit to stand trial, and accordingly refused
to terminate proceedings.

Finally, I would like to draw your attention to an interesting
decision by the Appeals Chamber in the case The Prosecutor v.
Sefer Halilovic,
granting in part an appeal by the Defence on
the issuance of subpoenas.

I understand that the ADC will give a briefing after this.

also the latest ADC-ICTY press briefing.

Office of the Prosecution:

Florence Hartman for the Office of the Prosecutor also announced
the visit of the Minister of Justice of Croatia, Ms. Vesna Skare
Ozbolt. She recalled that the Prosecutor together with the President
will travel to New York to address the Security Council on 29 June


Asked with regards to the visit of the Croatian
Minister of Justice and in relation to the pre-membership of Croatia
to the European Union whether this meant that the Tribunal received
full cooperation from Croatia and if the Tribunal expected to get
their hands on Gotovina, Hartmann replied that the situation not
was different since the OTP’s opinion was asked several weeks ago
by the European Commission on this matter. Hartmann explained that
becoming an EU member state was a long step-by-step process in which
several specific criteria’s had to be met. She added to say that
the Tribunal was waiting for the arrest of Gotovina.

Another journalist asked if the OTP was satisfied
with the cooperation of Croatia, putting the arrest of Gotovina
aside. Hartmann replied it was. The OTP had access to documents
and witnesses and had elaborated on this in several public reports
to the Security Council, the last one dated 31 May 2004.

Asked whether, during the visit of the Croatian
Minister of Justice, the question of transferring specific cases
to Croatia would be part of the discussion, Hartmann replied this
issue was already addressed and that Croatia was initiating a process
to adapt their criminal law in order to have cases deferred. She
continued to say that Croatia was in the process of doing so which
has not been finished and therefore it was too early to say anything
new about that.

Chartier added it was always difficult to anticipate
on meetings which were to take place. With regard to the issue of
transferring of cases he reiterated what Jim Landale had mentioned
last week namely that regardless of what had been or would be discussed
between the OTP and States, the final decision to allow a case to
be transferred was the decision of the Trial Chamber. He referred
to Rule 11 bis of the Rules of Procedure of Evidence.

In this same matter a journalist asked whether
the ICTY had read the OSCE report and what the opinion was. Chartier
answered that speaking on behalf of the Registry and Chambers he
was aware of this report and that the relevant ICTY officials would
study the full report and surely find elements which might have
an impact on ongoing discussions.

Hartmann answered that the OTP also had the report
and that again this was an ongoing process in Croatia and that the
OTP was aware of the problems and difficulties.

Finally a question was asked if the Prosecutor
had good reasons to believe that Radovan Karadzic would be in The
Hague before Tuesday, 29 June. Hartmann replied that the Prosecutor
believed that somebody who had been indicted for grave breaches
of international law should be arrested and transferred to The Hague.
This Indictment had been issued in 1995 and whatever the date, even
next Tuesday, was too late.

Chartier added that he would like to quote the
President who said this morning in Srebrenica: "It is simply
unacceptable that the authorities in the Republika Srpska have yet
to arrest and transfer any individual on their territory who has
been indicted by the Tribunal.''
adding that the President was
looking forward to a swift improvement in this situation by these
authorities to comply with their clear obligations under International
Law. Chartier continued to say that he believed that the words used
last night by the new President of the Republika Srpska sounded
like starting a new chapter.

Press Briefing documents

The Prosecutor v. Slobodan Milosevic

17 June 2004 "Order To Accused Concerning
Applications For Safe Conduct". 1pg

The Prosecutor v. Vidoje Blagojevic et al

16 June 2004 "Vidoje Blagojevic’s Notice Of
Disclosure Of Expert Witness Statement Under Rule 94bis." 25pg

21 June 2004 "Second Motion To Present Additional
Evidence Pursuant To Rule 115." 100pg

21 June 2004 "Motion To Present The Expert
Opinion Of Dr Stanko Pihler As Additional Evidence Pusuant To Rule
115." 20pg

The Prosecutor v. Pavle Strugar

11 June 2004 "Defence Submission: Expert Report."

11 June 2004 "Defence Submission: Expert Report
II." 10pg

17 June 2004 "Decision On Defence Motion For
Certification." 4pg

18 June 2004 "Defence Submission: Expert Report
III" 15pg

The Prosecutor v. Momir Nikolic

22 June 2004 "Momir Nikolic’s Response To
The Prosecution’s Motion To Strike Parts Of Defence Appeal Brief
And Evidence Not On Record." 8pg

The Prosecutor v. Sefer Halilovic

21 June 2004 "Decision On The Issuance Of
Supoenas". 11pg

The Prosecutor v. Radovan Stankovic

21 June 2004 "Defence’s Pre-Trial Brief".

The Prosecutor v. Naser Oric

18 June 2004 "Decision Of The Registry On
Assignment Of Counsel And The Extent To Which The Accused Is Able
To Remunerate Counsel". 7pg

The Prosecutor v. Mejakic,Gruban,Fustar,
and Knezevic

17 June 2004 "Decision On Prosecution’s Second
Motion To Resolve Conflict Of Interest Regarding Attorney Jovan
Simic." 4pg

The Prosecutor v. Blagoje Simic

17 June 2004 "Appellate Brief Of Blagoje Simic."