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Tribunal and the Czech Republic sign Agreement for the loan of Prison Staff to the Tribunal

Press Release
(Exclusively for the use of the media. Not an official document)
The Hague, 23 March 2006

Tribunal and the Czech Republic sign Agreement for the loan of Prison Staff to the Tribunal

The Registrar of the Tribunal, Mr. Hans Holthuis, and the Ambassador of the Czech Republic, Mr. Petr Kubernát, signed today an agreement between the United Nations and the Government of the Czech Republic for the loan of prison staff to the Tribunal.

This agreement was concluded after several months of negotiations. On the basis of the agreement, the Czech government will loan four detention guards to the Tribunal. The guards will serve in the United Nations Detention Unit in Scheveningen (“UNDU”) under the authority of the Registrar, the Deputy Registrar and the UNDU Commanding Officer.

The Tribunal welcomes this agreement and is very appreciative of the Czech Government's support. The agreement allows the Tribunal to further increase the number of international personnel in its Detention Unit and benefit from their experience.

At the same time, the agreement offers Czech prison guards the opportunity to gain international experience in a detention facility run by the United Nations. This experience will be valuable not only for their personal career but also for the Czech penitentiary system once the prison guards return to their domestic duty stations.

The agreement is concluded for a period of three years. It may be extended with the consent of both parties on the same conditions and for a further agreed period.

The Tribunal had such an agreement with Denmark from 1998-2002. The Tribunal has a similar agreement with Austria which has been in effect since 1998. The Tribunal is interested in concluding such agreements with additional countries. Discussions in this regard are ongoing.