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Prosecutor Brammertz's Address Before The Security Council

Press Release
(Exclusively for the use of the media. Not an official document)

The Hague, 4 June 2008

Prosecutor Brammertz's Address Before The Security Council

The Prosecutor, Serge Brammertz addressed today the UN Security Council and provided his progress report on the completion strategy. This was his first report to the Security Council in his capacity as Prosecutor of the ICTY.

In his address, the Prosecutor focused on the ongoing and pending judicial proceedings, interaction with prosecutors in the region, and the cooperation of States.

In respect of judicial proceedings, the Prosecutor outlined the efforts of his Office in achieving the goal of presenting evidence in an efficient manner, recognising both the rights of the victims to have a representative number of the crimes brought to trial and the rights of the accused to a fair trial.

Prosecutor Brammertz also highlighted the importance of assisting colleagues in the region so that they can continue to effectively prosecute war crimes cases and reiterated his determination to reinforce professional ties with national prosecutors and develop true partnerships in this respect. The Prosecutor stated that he will continue to explore further methods of cooperation, such as engaging local prosecutors and experts at the Tribunal in The Hague with a view to facilitating the sharing of expertise and providing practical hands-on training.

Finally, in terms of cooperation of States, the Prosecutor emphasized its crucial importance to the ability of the Tribunal to fulfil its mandate and highlighted the current problems of cooperation.

With respect to Croatia, the Prosecutor informed the Council that, although certain archival material was made available, a number of requests for key documents in connection with ongoing trials are still pending. He reiterated his request to Croatia that these be made available immediately.

The Prosecutor encouraged the authorities of Bosnia and Herzegovina to adopt a more pro-active approach against those helping the fugitives evade justice.

With respect to Serbia, Prosecutor Brammertz informed the Security Council of the difficulties his Office is still encountering in obtaining some key documents and the required access to archives and stated that a court order was requested in this respect. He also repeated that, with the exception of the activities recently undertaken under the supervision of the Serbian War Crimes Prosecutor in an attempt to arrest Stojan Župljanin, there was no notable progress in the search for remaining fugitives.

The Prosecutor concluded by saying the following: “I cannot think of a situation in which the Tribunal, which has been established to try those most responsible for atrocious crimes, will close its doors without having tried all remaining fugitives. During my trip to Bosnia and Herzegovina last March, I met with a number of victims’ associations. After all these years, their demands for justice are unwavering and unanswered in respect of the fugitives. I was impressed by the courage of the survivors and the clarity of their message that the accused must be tried by the International Tribunal. They have never given up. And neither can we. We owe them the justice that was promised 15 years ago, when this Tribunal was set up.”


The full text of the Prosecutor’s speech can be found on the Tribunal’s website at:

In English: http://www.un.org/icty/pressreal/2008/pr1259e-annex.htm

In French: http://www.un.org/icty/pressreal/2008/pr1259f-annex.htm

The full report of the Completion Strategy Assessment can be found on the Tribunal’s website at:

In English: http://www.un.org/icty/publications-e/index.htm

In French: http://www.un.org/icty/publications-f/index.htm