Rwanda: Security Council Extends Terms of Judges Serving On UN Rwanda Genocide Tribunal

The Security Council today extended the term of office of five judges serving with the United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) to facilitate the completion of the court's work. In a unanimously adopted resolution, the 15-member body extended the terms of the following permanent judges until 31 December 2014 or until the completion of the cases to which they are assigned: Mehmet Güney of Turkey, Khalida Rachid Khan of Pakistan, Arlette Ramaroson of Madagascar, Bakhtiyar Tuzmukhamedov of Russia, and Andrésia Vaz of Senegal.

Based in Arusha, Tanzania, the ICTR was set up after the Rwandan genocide, when at least 800,000 ethnic Tutsis and politically moderate Hutus were killed during a span of three months beginning in April 1994. The Council has urged both the ICTR and the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) to conclude their work by the end of 2014.

It set up the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals (IRMCT) in December 2010 and mandated it to take over and finish the remaining tasks of the two tribunals when they are closed after their mandates expire. The ICTR branch of the Residual Mechanism began its functions on 1 July, while the branch for ICTY will start on 1 July 2013.

In today's resolution, the Council requested updates on the transition of functions of the ICTR to the Residual Mechanism, and also urged all States to provide all needed assistance to the tribunal, particularly in relation to the arrest of remaining fugitives.

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