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ICTY Weekly Press Briefing - 23 January 2013

Date:  23.01.2013
Time: 12:00

Registry and Chambers:

Magdalena Spalińska, Spokesperson for Registry and Chambers, made the following statement:

Good afternoon,

I will immediately turn to the courtroom schedule:

The closing arguments in the case of Jovica Stanišić and Franko Simatović will be held from next Tuesday, 29 January to Thursday, 31 January from 14:15 to 19:00 in Courtroom III.

Stanišić and Simatović are two high level officials from the Serbian Secret Service, who are accused of having directed, organised, equipped, trained, armed and financed units of the Serbian State Security which are alleged to have murdered, persecuted and deported Croats, Bosnian Muslims, Bosnian Croats and other non-Serb civilians from Bosnia and Herzegovina and Croatia between 1991 and 1995. The Prosecution’s presentation of evidence started on 29 June 2009 and concluded on 5 April 2011 after calling 62 live witnesses. The Defence case was held from 15 June 2011 to 17 September 2012, during which a total of 33 witnesses were called to testify in person.

The appeal hearing in the case of Nikola Šainović and others has been scheduled to be held from Monday 11 March through to Tuesday, 19 March. The Judgement in this case, involving senior Serbian political, military and police officials was rendered on 26 February 2009. It was the first Judgement handed down by the Tribunal for crimes committed by Serbian forces against Kosovo Albanians during the 1999 conflict in Kosovo. One of the co-accused, Milan Milutinović, the former President of Serbia, was acquitted of all charges and the Prosecution did not appeal his acquittal. The other five co-accused received sentences ranging from 15 to 22 years’ imprisonment.

 Proceedings in the trials of Radovan Karadžić, Ratko Mladić and Goran Hadžić continue this week and next as scheduled:

In the trial of Radovan Karadžić, the Chamber is currently hearing the testimony of Dragomir Milošević, a former Commander of the Sarajevo-Romanija Corps of the Republika Srpska Army, who is testifying about the events in Sarajevo. Milošević was sentenced by the ICTY to 29 years’ imprisonment for crimes committed against civilians of Sarajevo during the second half of the 1992-1995 siege of the city. He has been serving his sentence in Estonia since March 2011. He is the 64th witness to be called by the Defence.

In the case of Ratko Mladić, protected witness RM-055 who is a former UNPROFOR member is currently testifying about the events in Sarajevo. He is the 64th witness to be called by the Prosecution.

The hearings in the case of Goran Hadžić will resume tomorrow at 9:00 in Courtroom II.

Finally, I would like to inform you that on Friday, 25 January, President Meron will deliver an address in Strasbourg to mark the opening of the judicial year of the European Court of Human Rights, upon the invitation of the Court. The opening of the judicial year is a solemn occasion and takes place in the presence of Judges of the European Court of Human Rights, as well as Judges of the Constitutional and Supreme Courts of member States of the Council of Europe and other leading judicial and national figures. The title of President Meron's address will be "Human Rights Standards in the Jurisprudence of International Criminal Courts and Tribunals".

Office of the Prosecutor:

Frederick Swinnen, Special Advisor to the Prosecutor, made the following statement.

Upon the invitation of the Finnish authorities, Mr. Serge Brammertz, paid an official visit to Helsinki between 21-23 January. The Prosecutor met with representatives of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Justice and the Finnish prosecution authorities.

The topics addressed during these meetings included the ongoing judicial work at the ICTY, the progress in implementing the ICTY the Completion Strategy, cooperation of States of the former Yugoslavia with the ICTY Office of the Prosecutor and developments with regard to war crimes prosecutions in the former Yugoslavia.

During his visit, Mr. Brammertz has also taken part in a conference for Nordic war crime prosecutors, organized by the Office of the Prosecutor General. 

Mr. Brammertz was the main speaker at the seminar entitled “Investigation and Prosecution of Violations of International Humanitarian Law: Challenges and Perspectives” organized jointly by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and the Erik Castrén Institute of International Law and Human Rights (ECI).


No questions were asked.

International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia

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