Arusha(INTERNEWS) – U.N Prosecutors have called upon national and international authorities to assist their tribunals by arresting and transferring immediately indicted fugitives for serious war and human crimes committed in Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia .
In a joint statement issued at the end of their three-day colloquium November 27,2004, the prosecutors of International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR),International Criminal Court for former Yugoslavia (ICTY),Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL) and International Criminal Court(ICC), said that the fugitives must be brought to justice for their alleged acts.
They mentioned Radovan Karadzic, Ratko Mladic, Ante Gotovina, Felicien Kabuga and Charles Taylor as most wanted by the tribunals.
.The prosecutors reaffirm their commitment to ending impunity and deterring crimes against humanity,. stated the statement, adding that a culture of accountability must be installed and bringing about peace and reconciliation in post-conflict societies.
The colloquium was titled: ”Challenges of International Criminal Justice”.
The prosecutors also underscored progress achieved by the tribunals, and urged global community for continued support to accomplish their tasks.
“The ultimate success of these tribunals depends on the continued political support of the international community. Resources, co-operation, and assistance are essential to enforce the principle of accountability and rule of law”, the statement adds.
On prosecution of crimes, they recognized the vital role of national jurisdictions, but suggested that international institutions needed to step in when national systems lack strength or impartially.” Combined national and international efforts will be a guarantee of impartial justice.”
During their meeting, the prosecutors discussed a wide range of issues they face in bringing to justice key perpetrators of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity in conflict regions of the world.
The prosecutors exchanged views on successful strategies for conducting investigations, protecting witnesses and enforcing sentences against convicts of the international tribunals.
They also assessed how best to administer tribunals and to complete their work in the time limits prescribed by the United Nations.
The prosecutors have formed a task force to gather and exchange strategies and best practices for the prosecution of international crimes, and have agreed to meet again in six months in Sierra Leone .
Other presenters at the conference included, Adama Dieng, ICTR Registrar; Navanethem Pillay, Appeals Judge at the ICC and former President of the ICTR; Lovemore Munlo, Deputy Registrar of ICTR, Gavin Ruxton, Chief of Prosecutions at the ICTY; Martin Ngoga, Deputy Prosecutor Rwanda and Bernard Muna, former Deputy prosecutor ICTR.
The conference was funded by the Ford Foundation and the Open Society Institute.