Mechanism Judges hold in-person Plenary Session in Arusha


On 26 and 27 February 2024, the Judges of the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals (Mechanism) gathered for an in-person Plenary Session at the seat of the Mechanism in Arusha, United Republic of Tanzania. This was the Mechanism's fourth in-person Plenary Session, with the previous one having been held in 2022 at the Mechanism’s Hague branch.

The Plenary was convened by Judge Graciela Gatti Santana, who assumed the Presidency of the Mechanism on 1 July 2022, and was attended by 20 other Mechanism Judges. The Judges discussed issues pertaining to the work of Chambers and the legal framework of the Mechanism, as well as other current priorities of the institution, including its future planning activities. Mechanism Prosecutor Serge Brammertz and Registrar Abubacarr M. Tambadou also participated in certain discussions and provided updates to the Judges on their respective areas of responsibility.

During the course of the Plenary, the Judges decided to adopt an amendment to the Mechanism’s Rules of Procedure and Evidence, which will soon be transmitted to the United Nations Security Council. In addition, they issued a statement on the “Ethical Principles for International Criminal Judges” that were adopted in Paris on 15 May 2023 within the framework of the “Ethica” project. Separately, the Judges received a briefing by the co-chiefs of the Chambers Legal Support Section on the working methods of the Section and the Mechanism’s Case Law Database.

The Mechanism maintains a roster of 25 Judges, who serve when called to do so by the President of the Mechanism. Judges are generally expected to carry out their functions remotely, unless their presence is required at one of the two branches of the Mechanism.