Fourth cycle of the Mechanism’s Inter-University Video Lecture Programme concludes

The Hague
Fourth cycle of the Mechanism’s Inter-University Video Lecture Programme concludes

The fourth cycle of the Mechanism's Inter-University Video Lecture Programme (Programme) concluded today with a lecture by representatives of the Mechanism's Witness Support and Protection Unit (WISP) from The Hague. The WISP representatives spoke about the types of support and assistance provided to victims and witnesses appearing before the ICTY and the Mechanism.

The Programme, entitled “International Law and Facts Established before the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY)”, is organised by the Mechanism Information Programme for Affected Communities (MIP). Bringing together postgraduate students from 13 law and political science faculties across the former Yugoslavia, the aim of the Programme is to initiate a dialogue about the region's recent history, the role of the ICTY and the principles of international criminal law and international humanitarian law.

As with previous cycles of the Programme, the fourth cycle consisted of a series of lectures held over a period of six months. Participating students had the opportunity to learn about the ICTY's legacy and jurisprudence from legal experts, including current Principals, Judges and staff members of the Mechanism.

The President of the Mechanism, Judge Graciela Gatti Santana, launched the fourth cycle of the Programme in October 2022 with a lecture on the ICTY's establishment and jurisdiction. Current Mechanism Judge and former ICTY Judge Alphons Orie presented the second lecture of the cycle, during which he spoke about the role of Judges at the ICTY.

The Registrar of the Mechanism, Mr. Abubacarr Tambadou, also participated in the series, delivering a lecture on the role and functions of the Mechanism.

In addition, the following Mechanism staff members took part in the lecture series:

  • Laurel Baig, Senior Appeals Counsel in the Office of the Prosecutor, who gave a lecture on the work and mandate of the Office of the Prosecutor;
  • Emiliya Viktorova, Senior Legal Officer in the Chambers Legal Support Section, who introduced the students to the contributions of the ICTY and the Mechanism to the development of international law;
  • Christopher Lentz, Legal Officer in the Office of the President, who gave a lecture on the notion of joint criminal enterprise in the ICTY's jurisprudence;
  • Sarah Melikian, Legal Officer in the Office of the Prosecutor, who delivered a lecture on the destruction of cultural heritage;
  • Anisa Sućeska, MIP Coordinator for Youth Outreach, who explained the importance of the ICTY and Mechanism archival material and introduced students to the Mechanism's court records database, including how to access and use its resource materials; and
  • Rada Pejić-Sremac, MIP Coordinator, who talked about the lasting importance of the outreach programmes of the ICTY and the Mechanism.

Lectures in the fourth cycle were also delivered by:

  • Marie O'Leary, then-President of the Association of Defence Counsel Practising before the International Courts and Tribunals, who gave a lecture on safeguarding the rights of the accused and the right to self-representation;
  • Gregory Townsend, lecturer in law and former ICTY staff member, who talked about the prosecution of wartime sexual violence at the ICTY;
  • Ivan Jovanović, legal expert at the United Nations Development Programme, who spoke about the role of the ICTY and the Mechanism in the processing of war crimes cases before judiciaries in the former Yugoslavia; and
  • Goran Šimić, Professor of Criminal Law and Dean of the Faculty of Law at the University Vitez, Bosnia and Herzegovina, who explained the importance and challenges of transitional justice.

The Programme forms part of the wider MIP, which is funded by the European Union.

The aim of the MIP is to improve the knowledge and understanding of citizens and communities in the countries of the former Yugoslavia about the crimes committed during the conflicts of the 1990s, based on ICTY and Mechanism cases.