Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

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 1                           Monday, 24 November 2008

 2                           [Status Conference]

 3                           [Open session]

 4                           [The appellants Haradinaj and Balaj not present in

 5                           court]

 6                           [The appellant Brahimaj entered court]

 7                           --- Upon commencing at 3.03 p.m.

 8             JUDGE POCAR:  Good afternoon.

 9             Mr. Registrar, could you please call the case.

10             THE REGISTRAR:  Good afternoon, Your Honour.  Good afternoon to

11     everyone in the courtroom.  This is case number IT-04-84-A, the

12     Prosecutor versus Ramush Haradinaj, et al.

13             JUDGE POCAR:  Thank you.

14             May I have the appearances of the parties.

15             The Prosecution.

16             MR. DALAL:  Good afternoon, Your Honour.  Marwan Dalal for the

17     Prosecution, together with appeals counsel, Barbara Goy, and our case

18     manager, Ms. Alma Imamovic-Ivanov.

19             JUDGE POCAR:  Thank you.

20             Now for Mr. Brahimaj?

21             MR. HARVEY:  Good afternoon, Your Honour.  Richard Harvey for

22     Mr. Brahimaj.

23             JUDGE POCAR:  Yes.

24             MR. DIXON:  Your Honour, good afternoon.  Rodney Dixon on behalf

25     of Mr. Ramush Haradinaj.

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 1             MS. ROHAN:  Good afternoon, Your Honour.  Colleen Rohan on behalf

 2     of Mr. Idriz Balaj.

 3             JUDGE POCAR:  Thank you.

 4             Now, Mr. Brahimaj, can you hear the proceedings in a language you

 5     understand?

 6             THE APPELLANT BRAHIMAJ: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour.

 7             JUDGE POCAR:  Thank you very much.

 8             This is a status conference called in accordance with Article 65

 9     bis of the Rules of Procedure and Evidence, and that, as you know,

10     requires a Status Conference to be convened within 120 days of the filing

11     of a notice of appeal and thereafter within 120 days after the last

12     Status Conference.

13             The previous Status Conference in this case was held on 22nd

14     August, 2008, so it comes a bit earlier today, but due to the fact that

15     the next Status Conference would have taken place during the judicial

16     recess and considering the scheduling of trials, I thought it was useful

17     to have it today, and so I issued the order on 12 November to have the

18     conference now.

19             Let me recall the situation of the case.  The Trial Chamber

20     rendered its judgement in this case on 3 April 2008.  The Prosecution

21     filed its notice of appeal on 2nd May, 2008, while counsel for

22     Mr. Brahimaj filed its notice of appeal 5 May 2008.  Then the Prosecution

23     filed its appeal brief on 16 July, while Mr. Brahimaj submitted his on 19

24     of July.  Responses and replies followed.  As of mid-September, the

25     briefing appears to be complete now in this case.  The Appeals Chamber

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 1     will consider the matters of the appeal in due course and advise about a

 2     possible hearing in the future.

 3             Is there anything concerning the schedule that the parties want

 4     to raise now?  That does not seem to be the case.

 5             So in light of the rules, I would like to inquire about

 6     Mr. Brahimaj's state of health and conditions of detention.  Let me

 7     recall to you, Mr. Brahimaj, that pursuant to Rules 80 and 81 of the

 8     Rules of Detention, if a detainee is not satisfied with the conditions of

 9     his or her detention, he or she is entitled to "make a complaint to the

10     Commanding Officer" and, in case of an unsatisfactory response, to "make

11     a written complaint ... to the Registrar, who shall inform the President"

12     of the Tribunal.

13             So I would like to inquire, Mr. Brahimaj, do you have any

14     concerns in relation to your state of health or conditions of detention?

15             THE APPELLANT BRAHIMAJ: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I have no

16     complaints.

17             JUDGE POCAR:  I thank you, Mr. Brahimaj.

18             Well, at this point I would like to ask the parties whether they

19     have any other issue they would like to raise at this time.

20             The Prosecution?

21             MR. DALAL:  Your Honour, the Prosecution has nothing to add at

22     this stage.  Thank you.

23             JUDGE POCAR:  I thank you.

24             And the Defence?

25             MR. DIXON:  Your Honour, on behalf of Mr. Haradinaj, there's

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 1     nothing to raise at this point in time.  Thank you.

 2             MS. ROHAN:  On behalf of Mr. Balaj, the same is true.  We have

 3     nothing to raise at this point.  Thank you.

 4             MR. HARVEY:  Your Honour, just one matter to raise on behalf of

 5     Mr. Brahimaj.

 6             As Your Honour has correctly recalled, the judgement of the Trial

 7     Chamber was issued on the 3rd of April.  As Your Honour will know, the

 8     rules require that a translation should be provided as soon as possible

 9     to the defendant.  The promised translation is still awaited here in

10     November and approaching December.

11             In September, we wrote to express our concern at the excessive

12     delay and were assured that the final translation would be provided to

13     Mr. Brahimaj by the 7th of November.  The 7th of November has been and

14     gone.  We have written again requesting further information on why this

15     additional delay.  The explanation we have been given is that there is a

16     serious shortage of Albanian interpreters available here at the Tribunal

17     and that one of the interpreters has been working apparently full-time -

18     I'm not quite sure for how much of the time that has been going on - on

19     trying to prepare this.

20             The situation is now that Mr. Brahimaj has other colleagues in

21     the Detention Unit who have copies of his judgement in B/C/S, and he

22     still doesn't have it in his own language.  So it's been translated into

23     B/C/S but not into Albanian as we stand here today.

24             I do understand from speaking with OLAD today that the draft of

25     the translation has been completed and the final version is, we are now

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 1     told, expected shortly, it is hoped by the 7th of December.  Well, I have

 2     to say, speaking for myself, that hopes have been dashed too many times

 3     in the past; and I think - at a minimum, at least - it would be

 4     appropriate for my client to be provided with the draft of the

 5     translation so that he can see that on the understanding that, of course,

 6     it is still only the draft and therefore should not be taken as

 7     word-for-word accurate.  But at least that would provide him with

 8     something to be going on with while the final version is being completed.

 9             I understand that this would be possible, but I think it probably

10     requires an order or at least a request from this Chamber so that that

11     can take place.  So that is what I ask today.

12             JUDGE POCAR:  Well, I thank you for raising this issue.  I will

13     look into that matter and see what can be done in order that your client

14     is provided with the translation as quickly as possible, and possibly, as

15     of now, the draft of the translation, if available.

16             MR. HARVEY:  May I tell the head of the Translation Unit that

17     this Chamber would approve of him being provided with a draft

18     immediately?

19             JUDGE POCAR:  I have no problem with that, of course, personally.

20     I don't know what are the uses of the Translation Unit because I know

21     interpreters don't like to have provisional translations going out.  But

22     I have no problem that your client is provided with a translation.  You

23     can certainly tell that.  I will tell them myself.

24             MR. HARVEY:  Thank you, Your Honour.  I appreciate that.

25             JUDGE POCAR:  Well, if there is no other issue to be raised now,

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 1     I believe this concludes our business today.  I thank the parties for

 2     their attendance and call the hearing to a close today.

 3                           --- Whereupon the Status Conference adjourned

 4                           at 3.13 p.m.