Magazine article UN Chronicle

Rwanda

Magazine article UN Chronicle

Rwanda

Article excerpt

In an effort to improve the efficiency of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, the Security Council unanimously adopted resolution 1165 (1998), by which it decided to establish a third Trial Chamber and, towards that end, amended three articles of the statute of the Tribunal. The Council also decided to hold elections for the judges of the three trial chambers for a term of office to expire on 24 May 2003.

The International Tribunal, established by resolution 955 (1994) to try persons responsible for the 1994 genocide in Rwanda, will now have 14 judges instead of 11 - three judges each for the Trial Chambers and five for the Appeals Chamber. As an exceptional measure, to enable the third Trial Chamber to begin to function at the earliest possible date, the Council decided that the three newly-elected judges should commence their terms of office as soon as possible. The Secretary-General was requested to make practical arrangements for the elections of the judges and for enhancing the effective functioning of the Tribunal, including the timely provision of personnel and facilities, in particular for the third Trial Chamber and related offices of the Prosecutor.

The Council had responded, in a letter dated 15 October 1997, to the Secretary-General's recommendation for the Tribunal's expansion, based on an earlier proposal by the President of the Tribunal, Laity Kama, in a 1 August 1997 letter, in which he noted the "overwhelming necessity to increase the number of judges in order to compose a Third Chamber", citing the increased number of detainees following a number of arrests made in Kenya. Anticipating that most of the detainees would be indicted by the Tribunal, Justice Laity made the recommendation in the interest of "expeditious justice".

The Council on 9 April asked Secretary-General Kofi Annan to reactivate the International Commission of Inquiry to investigate reports on the sale and supply of arms and related materiel to former Rwandan government forces (FAR) and militias, to identify parties aiding and abetting the illegal sale to or acquisition of arms by the FAR, and to make recommendations relating to the illegal flow of arms in the Great Lakes region, in violation of Council resolutions. …

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