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ICTY Weekly Press Briefing - 10th Oct 2001

ICTY Press Briefing - 10 October 2001

note that this is not a verbatim transcript of the Press Briefing. It is merely
a summary.

Weekly Press Briefing

Date: 10 October 2001

Time: 11:30 a.m.


Jim Landale, Spokesman for Registry and Chambers, made the following statement:

the Judges of the ICTY will be travelling to Dublin, Ireland, in the coming
days, where they will meet up with the Judges of the ICTR for a two-day seminar,
sponsored by Trinity College. During the seminar, three main topics will be
addressed: the President of the Tribunal, Judge Claude Jorda, will launch his
reform programme for the Appeals Chamber; the ICTR’s plan to introduce ad
judges will be discussed; and the harmonization of the Rules of Procedure
and Evidence will be discussed following a presentation on the subject by Trinity

Judges will be returning to The Hague on Sunday, with the exception of the Vice-President,
Judge Mumba, who will represent the ICTY Judges at a meeting with the Irish
President, Mary McAleese, on Monday.

on, I’d like to announce that the Kupreskic Appeals Judgement will be handed
down 23 October at 1.30 p.m. You are all of course welcome to attend.

the Galic case, we have received an order for pre-trial briefs. The OTP is to
file theirs by 15 October, the Defence by 23 October, and the pre-trial conference
has been set for 8 November.

those of you who don’t already have one, we have copies of the new Milosevic
indictment. The case has been assigned by President Jorda to Trial Chamber III,
with Judge May presiding.



Florence Hartmann, Spokeswoman for the Office of the Prosecutor, made no statement.


Asked for
clarification on what exactly the reform programme for the Appeals Chamber
was, Landale replied that it would explore ways to improve the collaboration
between the Judges and to work out ways of making sure that the appeals process
did not delay the Tribunal in finishing its mission. It was a way of making
sure that the process was more streamlined. He added that obviously the Tribunal
would face an increased number of appeal cases, so it was necessary to do
the groundwork to ensure that they ran smoothly.

Asked to
explain what ‘joint criminal enterprise’ was and why it was decided by the
OTP to give a warning to 15 people that they were under investigation by the
Tribunal, Hartmann replied that the Tribunal had jurisprudence on ‘common
purpose’, a notion which was quite similar to ‘joint criminal enterprise’.
This ‘common purpose’ was heard by the Appeals Chamber in the Tadic case and
in the Brdjanin and Talic case.

went on to say that on the subject of ‘joint criminal enterprise’, Milosevic,
the accused in this indictment, worked together with other people. ‘joint
criminal enterprise’, Hartmann added was very similar to the notion of ‘association
de malfaiteurs’ in continental law. The OTP had to explain that the fact
that Milosevic had de jure authority did not mean that he did not
have other de facto authority on structures other than those established
by the constitution and by internal law. The OTP had to point out those
structures and in which way Milosevic had a link with the crimes committed
in the field. She added that the names were given because even if they were
not, anyone could look through archives to find out what position in those
structures those people held. (for example the JNA, Ministry of Internal
Affairs, the STB or the secret police). Because the names of those people
were in the indictment the OTP answered the question on their positions
whether they were under indictment.

Asked whether
it was a new OTP strategy to make public the fact that people were under investigation,
Hartmann replied that it was not a question of strategy. The OTP had an indictee.
The Tribunal had to explain the grounds of this indictment and in the case
of Kosovo, the OTP had direct chain of command. Mr. Milosevic was the President
of Yugoslavia and Supreme Commander of all armed forces in his country. In
the case of Croatia or Bosnia and Herzegovina, however, the lines were not
direct and they had to be established. The OTP also had to explain what the
goal of the ‘joint criminal enterprise’ was but also how it worked through
each kind of structure and with whom. It was not a new strategy it was just
that the OTP was now reaching the highest echelons of power in the chain of

Asked when
the officers indicted in the Dubrovnik case were coming to the Tribunal, Hartmann
replied that it was quite confusing because in the hours following the disclosure
of the indictment to the public, (the competent authorities were informed
at the beginning of March about the arrest warrant and indictment against
those people) the OTP heard that two of them were ready to surrender voluntarily,
however there were no results at the moment. The authorities had to comply
promptly with arrest warrants, whether an accused was still thinking about
the option of voluntary surrender the authorities had to find a solution,
either arrest him or ask him to decide quickly. The OTP was not happy with
the lack of a result. The accused had been located and the authorities had
to comply immediately with the arrest warrant, this being the case for Montenegro
and for Serbia. The Yugoslav authorities could be to a degree involved because
some of them were either former of still active officers. Whoever in Yugoslavia
had the obligation, had to comply with this obligation quickly, she concluded.

Asked whether
the OTP had come to a decision as to whether it would appeal against the new
Sentencing Judgement in the Celebici case, Hartmann replied that the OTP had
not yet made a decision and was still studying the Judgement in detail.

Asked to
comment on a report that the Minister of Justice in Serbia said that Serbia
had no obligations towards the Tribunal, Landale replied that this was plainly
ridiculous. The authorities in Serbia had the obligation under International
Law to apprehend and transfer any person who had been indicted by the Tribunal
and had to do this without undue delay. The Tribunal hoped to see a concrete
sign of cooperation in the near future, he added.

Asked whether
there was any new information concerning the exhumations of the mass graves
in Serbia, Hartmann replied that information was coming to the Tribunal. The
OTP was in contact with the Prosecutor in Serbia who was investigating this
issue. The OTP was planning to extend the Milosevic indictment on Kosovo and
the new evidence and elements the Tribunal would collect on the basis of this
investigation would be included in that. She added that she did not believe
that they would be able for the moment make full identification of the bodies
exhumed and that the OTP had helped them get support for DNA materials for
that purpose.

went on to say that the exhumations for this year were more or less finished
now because of the weather. They could now work on the DNA identification
and that the OTP helped them by providing materials for that purpose. They
would also get materials from other countries, with the assistance of the
OTP, she said.

Asked whether
there was any contacts with Podgorica or the authorities in Belgrade on the
subject of the Dubrovnik indictment, Hartmann replied that she could not give
many details about that. She said that the OTP was informed by the usual interlocutors
about the case of Strugar and the fact that he was willing to surrender voluntarily.
The authorities had the arrest warrant and indictment and the OTP did not
need to give them any new documents on the case but the Tribunal was still
waiting. The OTP was also insisting in Belgrade through direct contact.

The answer the
OTP wanted was to see direct concrete results, people arriving in The Hague
by voluntary surrender or arrested. This meant the accused of the Dubrovnik
indictment but also other accused at large in Yugoslavia and the Bosnian Serb
entity of Republika Srpska.

Asked what
the exact answer was from the Belgrade side, Hartmann replied that the Belgrade
authorities were not saying no. Nobody was saying no, but no accused were
yet at the Tribunal.

Asked exactly
what they were saying whether it would be now or later, Hartmann replied they
were taking care of it but there were no results. It was not important to
say what they said or in which way. They had to comply immediately.

Asked whether
the Prosecutor planned to go to Belgrade in the near future, Hartmann replied
that the Prosecutor was planning to go to Belgrade. She added that the Prosecutor
was also planning to go in other places in the former Yugoslavia, mostly places
where the Tribunal did not have full cooperation. The schedule was not known

Landale announced
that the initial appearance of Milosevic for the new indictment would take
place on the 29 October, together with other matters which were already scheduled
for a hearing on that day.