The Security Council today extended the terms of office of a number of judges serving on the United Nations tribunal set up to deal with the worst war crimes committed during the Balkan conflicts of the 1990s to help the court to finish its caseload at the earliest.
“The extension of the terms of office of the judges concerned will enhance the effectiveness of trial proceedings and contribute towards the implementation of the Completion Strategy,” the Council said in its unanimously adopted resolution.
Under the Completion Strategy for the Tribunal, which is based in The Hague, all trials at first instance are supposed to be completed by the end of this year and all appeals by 2010.
The terms of four members of the Appeals Chamber were extended until 31 December 2010, “or until the completion of the cases before the Appeals Chamber if sooner.”
In addition, 10 judges serving on the Trial Chamber and 14 ad litem, or temporary, judges currently serving at the Tribunal had their terms of office extended until 31 December 2009, or until the completion of the cases to which they are assigned if sooner.
Also extended until 31 December 2009, or until the completion of any cases to which they may be assigned if sooner, were 13 ad litem judges, who are not currently appointed to serve at the Tribunal.