Week 50 ICL Media Review

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Saturday, December 17, 2016 - 10:59

By ICL Media Review

In this week's review, news about  early release for former ICTR convicts, new head of Kosovo Tribunal announced, the conclusion of the Mladic closing statements, possible war crimes in Aleppo and more.

MICT grants convicted Nahimana and Rukundo early release

On 14 December 2016, the UN’s Mechanism for International Criminal Tribunals (MICT) announced that Ferdinand Nahimana and Emmanuel Rukundo will be released early. The decisions in the two cases were made in September and July respectively, but were only recently published. The Court in both cases took into consideration that two-thirds of their sentence had already been served and Nahimana and Rukundo demonstrated some signs of rehabilitation. Both individuals were sentenced by the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda for their role in the 1994 Rwandan genocide. Nahimana, a historian, was found guilty in 2003 of genocide, conspiracy to commit genocide, incitement, persecution and extermination. Rukundo, a priest, was convicted in 2009 of genocide, extermination, and murder. (Yahoo News)

Kosovo Tribunal names former ICC judge, Trendafilova, as head of court

On 14 December 2016, former International Criminal Court judge Ekaterina Trendafilova was appointed to head the Kosovo Specialist Chambers. The Hague-based court, which is expected to start operating in January, was created to prosecute crimes committed during and in the immediate aftermath of Kosovo’s war for independence. (Fox World News)

Mladic defence finishes closing arguments with plea for acquittal

On the final day of the closing statements delivered by lawyers for former Bosnian Serb Army Commander, Ratko Mladic, at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, his Defence urged the ICTY to acquit Mladic, in particular arguing that he should not be convicted for genocide over the events in Srebrenica because the Prosecution had not satisfactorily discharged its burden of proof: “the defence does not dispute that some men and boys were tragically killed in acts of personal vengeance in Srebrenica, but those murders have nothing with any commander or the intentions of Mladic.” Rather, Mladic’s defence lawyer Dragan Ivetic stated that the perpetrators of the killings were not acting under Mladic’s command; instead acting as “avengers.” Previous to these final statements, Mladic’s Defence argued that the charge that Mladic oversaw the terrorising of the population of Sarajevo during the 1992-5 siege of the city was fabricated to curry international sympathy, quoting a UN peacekeeping force report which stated that “the shelling has been significantly reduced… but the authorities continue creating a myth that the city is bombed” and reasoning that Bosnian Serb attacks were within the boundaries of proportionality. Defence lawyer Ivetic furthermore put forward that the Prosecution’s sole surviving witness present at trial had been wounded by an attack launched by Bosniak forces rather than Mladic’s Bosnian Serb army, and that Bosniak forces unlawfully used the presence of civilians to shield themselves. The Defence team delivered these closing statements from 9-13 December, following the Prosecution’s closing statements on 5-7 December. The verdict in Mladic’s trial is expected in November 2017. (Balkan Insight, Washington Post)

ICC judges

ICC Judges amend Court Regulations at 25th plenary session

The ICC Judges adopted seven amendments to the Regulations of the Court during their thirty-fifth plenary session. They are as follows: first, an amendment was made to Regulation 20(2) to state clearly that Chambers must make public their reasoning for ordering that certain hearings be heard in private session. Second, Regulation 24(5) was amended to clarify the permitted scope of a reply. Third, Regulation 33(1)(d) was amended to specify when exactly documents due on a specific date must be filed with the Registry. Fourth, amendments were made to Regulation 34 to alter time limits and procedures for responses and replies to responses. Fifth, specifications on document formats and page limits were added to Regulation 36. Sixth, modification to page limits and the addition of new documents were introduced to Regulation 38. Seventh and finally, Regulation 44(1) now specifies when an ICC Chamber has discretion to permit expert evidence from persons who are not on the Registry’s list of experts. These seven amendments take effect immediately, pursuant to Article 52(3) of the ICC Statute. They will now be circulated to State Parties for comment, and will remain in force if there are no objections from a majority of States Parties within six months. (ICC Press Release)

Bensouda gives UNSC bi-annual report on the situation in Darfur

ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda delivered her bi-annual report on the situation in Darfur to the United Nations Security Council on Tuesday, pursuant to Security Council Resolution 1593 of 2005. This is the 24th such report the Office of the Prosecutor has delivered to the Security Council. Prosecutor Bensouda underlined that nearly a decade has passed since the first warrant of arrest was issued by the ICC in the situation on Darfur, and stated that “it is with immense regret that I acknowledge once again that all five suspects against whom warrants of arrest have been issued by the International Criminal Court in this situation remain at large.” The Prosecutor then proceeded to provide an illustrative overview of the grave nature of the crimes committed in Darfur, and recalled the legal position regarding the obligation of States Parties to arrest and surrender sitting Sudanese President Omar Al Bashir should he travel to their territory. In connection with this obligation, she highlighted the failure of South Africa, Uganda, and Djibouti to comply with this legal duty. Finally, Prosecutor Bensouda urged the Security Council to “give new life to your Resolution 1593 by giving my Office the support it needs in order to advance its investigations and prosecutions in the Darfur situation. For the sake of the victims in Darfur, you must break the current impasse. Under the critical watch of history, we must not allow “Never Again” to ring hollow to taunt the memory of the victims in Darfur.” (ICC Press Release)

Colombian Congress considers amnesty law following peace deal

Following a revised peace deal between Colombia and the rebel Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), the government of Colombia has presented Congress with an amnesty law. The bill is a key element in ensuring the group’s demobilisation, as without it the FARC members have no guarantee of amnesty after they move into the demobilisation, disarmament and reintegration camps. Under the peace agreement, the FARC must move all its members into the camps before December 31. Due to time constraints, President Juan Manual Santos has called for extraordinary sessions during the Christmas break to ensure that the Congress approves the amnesty law before the deadline. Once moved to the camps, the decision of whether to grant amnesty will be taken by special amnesty tribunals. The ICC has been conducting a preliminary examination into crimes committed in Colombia since June 2014; encouraging prosecutions for crimes committed and discouraging amnesties. (Colombia Reports, Colombia Reports, ICC Press Release)

UN reports of possible war crimes on execution style killings in Aleppo

The UN High Commission for Human Rights, Zeid Raad al-Hussein has stated that the bombings of parts of Aleppo in northern Syria, held by rebels and packed with civilians, is “probably a war crime”. Under an evacuation deal brokered by Russia and Turkey, civilians and rebels were to be allowed to leave the city. However, hours after the ceasefire was agreed, fresh shelling was reported. The UN reported that up to 82 civilians, including children, were shot on the spot by government and allied forces on the previous day. The conflict has also seen hundreds of men and boys go missing from government controlled areas. In addition to the UN High Commissioner’s comments, the UK government has said that as well as using aerial surveillance, evidence is being collected of possible war crimes from social media and local testimony from activists on the ground. (BBC News, Relief Web, BBC News)


ICL Media Review is an independent UK small charity, which aims to provide a daily survey of news and developments affecting international criminal law and international human rights in a neutral and impartial manner. 

David D Y Choi

Under the Sky, One should be equal as long as Human Being.

Underprivileged social class, Before the birth, even after the death, this underprivileged group should follow the pre-framed given route.

Upon realizing that crossing the given route is limited, its trial object would be named as ‘Betrayer’ or targeted as ‘Gov. Sanction’.

Extending of this status, urged and resulted let David create hand written images between # 1 and # 58.

Still, there, no one, no response, no way to get out, its condition is extended. Its uselessness, barren condition has been extended as usual. David D Y Choi , June, 2018 ( e-mail ; [email protected], or [email protected] ) Personal URL : http://www.cdyera.wordpress.com ( at URL, on the bottom site, linked images are available )

Friday, June 1, 2018 - 04:14