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Second Diplomatic Information Seminar held at the ICTY.

Press Release . Communiqué de presse

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



The Hague, 23 March 2001



Today, Friday 23 March 2001, representatives from the diplomatic missions to the Netherlands attended a Diplomatic Information Seminar held at the seat of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY).

Initiated by the President of the Tribunal, Judge Claude Jorda, this seminar was aimed at inviting Member States to nominate candidates for the elections of the ad litem judges. For this election to proceed, 54 applications are required and the ICTY’s President is anxious to obtain as many candidates as possible.

Proposed last year by the Judges of the ICTY, the establishment of a pool of additional judges was approved on 30 November 2000 by the Security Council who adopted resolution 1329. Providing also for the enlargement by two judges of the Appeals Chambers of the ICTY and the ICTR, this Resolution is designed "to enable the International Tribunals to expedite the conclusion of
their work at the earliest possible date".


In his welcoming address, Judge Claude Jorda stressed the importance of resolution 1329, and said that:

"the implementation of the ad litem judges mechanism, beginning in July of this year, is of the utmost importance for the future of the International Tribunal. The use of ad litem judges in conjunction with other reforms undertaken over the past 18 months -- from the implementation of the recommendations contained in the United Nations Experts' Group Report to the
enhancement of the pre-trial procedure -- will allow the Tribunal to complete its mandate much sooner than expected. Not only will this be very important in terms of the impact of the work of the Tribunal in the Balkans, it will also lead to significant savings for the United Nations. This is why we urge you to convey to your Governments the necessity for the largest possible number
of States to nominate candidates for the upcoming election of ad litem judges."

The Registrar. Mr. Hans Holthuis, then outlined the terms and conditions of service of the ad litem judges:

"While the ad litem judges will have the same status and general terms and conditions as those applicable to the permanent judges of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, the International Court of Justice and the Law of the Sea Tribunal, some modifications of the conditions have been necessary, in view
of the temporary nature of service and the different length in terms of the ad litem judges".

Finally, Mr. Stéphane Bourgon, Chef de Cabinet of the President, provided the diplomatic representatives with a detailed outline of the ad litem judges’ nomination process by States, election procedure by the General Assembly and the selection and assignment of the ad litem judges to the Trial Chambers. He further explained that the aim of having ad litem
judges was to augment the judgement capacity of the Tribunal and that for this reason their work would be focussed almost exclusively on trials. He also confirmed that ad litem judges would be assigned to Trial Chambers along with permanent judges and that upon their arrival at the Tribunal, they would undergo training on the Statute and the Rules of procedure and evidence, as
well as the Case Law of the Tribunal.


Composition of the Chambers

The new composition of the Chambers, as set out in an annex to resolution 1329, will be as follows:

The Chambers shall be composed of 16 permanent independent judges, no two of whom may be nationals of the same State, and a maximum at any one time of nine ad litem independent judges appointed in accordance with article 13 ter, paragraph 2, of the Statute, no two of whom may be nationals of the same State.

Three permanent judges and a maximum at any one time of six ad litem judges shall be members of each Trial Chamber. Each Trial Chamber to which ad litem judges are assigned may be divided into sections of three judges each, composed of both permanent and ad litem judges. A section of a Trial Chamber shall have the same powers and responsibilities as a Trial
Chamber under the Statute and shall render judgement in accordance with the same rules.

Seven of the permanent judges shall be members of the Appeals Chamber. The Appeals Chamber shall, for each appeal, be composed of five of its members.